Any Branson 2515 owners?

  • Active since 1995, Hearth.com is THE place on the internet for free information and advice about wood stoves, pellet stoves and other energy saving equipment.

    We strive to provide opinions, articles, discussions and history related to Hearth Products and in a more general sense, energy issues.

    We promote the EFFICIENT, RESPONSIBLE, CLEAN and SAFE use of all fuels, whether renewable or fossil.

andym

Feeling the Heat
Feb 6, 2020
409
Hicksville, Ohio
Anyone have first hand input on the Branson 2515 tractors? I'm not ready to purchase a new one, but have been casually shopping around for a newer tractor. I would love something in the 30-40 hp range but can't justify spending 20k for a used one.
These 25 HP tractors are advertised as being DPF free. To me that would be significant, but maybe I'm ignorant.
Just how capable is a tractor of this size with only 25hp? It's advertised as weighing in at 3,000 lbs without the loader. Would it always feel sluggish?
My main needs are something that can lift at least 1250 lbs, large enough to tug some logs, run a brush cutter etc. I've got ready access to larger tractors for any real ag work like plowing, etc. 80% of my needs could probably be met with a smaller tractor than the 2515 in reality.
If I would buy anything this year it would need to be under 15k. I would prefer hydrostatic, but would consider shuttle shift. I really like the specs on the bransons but am open to other brands.
 

duramaxman05

Minister of Fire
Aug 17, 2014
516
Perryville, Mo
I cant speak for the brand of tractor, but dont be afraid if its size. Will lift like a bigger tractor, no but you can make do. We have a kubota b7500 with a loader and a kubota b7100. I made a set of pallet forks for the b7500 and it will lift quite a bit. We have to bigger tractor and front end loaders for the heavy lifting. But for working in the woods the little kubota are pretty handy. Getting around is easy. The b7100 is our puller. I made a attachment that goes on the 3pt hitch to pull logs. Its ridiculous what that little thing pulls. Especially for weighing under 1500lbs. Hydrostat works great for loader work.
 

sloeffle

Minister of Fire
Mar 1, 2012
830
Central Ohio
When I bought my tractor a few years ago Branson didn't even make my initial list. There aren't any dealerships in my area and some of the reviews I read weren't very good. Anything <25HP ( technically it is based off kW ) doesn't need to have a DPF on it. I sold my 25HP JD 770 for a 47HP Yanmar YT347 because moving a 4x4 round bales ( 800lbs ) of hay on a weekly basis via the front end loader was not very safe.. I know the smaller HP machines they have out now can handle the weight better than my 770. If you plan on moving heavy things ( >1k lbs ) pretty frequently you'll be a lot happier in the 30 - 50HP range.

The tractor you are going to purchase is going to need maintenance, and possibly other work done to it. I'd choose a brand that has dealership near by and that you like and trust. That weighed big into my decision also. I really liked LS tractor but the closest dealership was over two hours away.
 
  • Like
Reactions: duramaxman05

blades

Minister of Fire
Nov 23, 2008
3,630
WI, Leroy
shop the dealer first, then worry about tractor make. i have a mf1230 (25hp) apx1998 vintage. there are times when I am short on hp . It does have mfwd which I use rarely. weight of the unit is a factor on what you can do also. I see some these 25 hp makes advertised with 2000lbs+ lift on the fel, but you better have a very large counter balance on the back to do that or you will pick the rear off the ground.
 

hedge wood

Burning Hunk
Mar 1, 2009
199
Eastern NE
I can't speak on the Branson brand of tractors. Its pretty green around my farm but I do have a Agco ST25 that I bought used about fifteen years ago. It had a couple hundred hours on it and now has a couple thousand on it. Pretty much only been oil and filters. I wouldn't have the shuttle shift in these smaller tractors. I mostly use mine for spot spraying and put a carrier on the three point for fixing fence and cutting smaller ceder trees from the pasture and CRP. If you are doing to lift 1250 pounds with it a lot you better move up to the next size tractors 30-50 Hp. The 25 HP is a little small for that much lifting. Its amazing what these little front wheel assist tractors can do.
 

andym

Feeling the Heat
Feb 6, 2020
409
Hicksville, Ohio
This same tractor is also available up to 45 hp I think. It weighs 3,000 lbs plus loader. It should be pretty capable, but my real question is if the 25hp is enough. I have no experience with such a tractor. Total it capacity does not need to be huge. Lift height would be more so. It would be a rare occasion that I would lift 2,100.
In my opinion this model looks to be the perfect size. I think my nearest dealer is about one hour away.
I have no large dealer of any brand (except JD and CIH) within 35 minutes. The only 4 brands im really considering are kubota, kioto, LS, and branson. Kubota I would buy in the 150-1200 hr range. The other three would need to be new or nearly so. Kubota is probably the safest bet on quality, dealer support, and resale value. The others would offer more options, capability, and/or less hours at reduced cost.
I would do virtually all maintenance and repairs myself. As I already do with all my other vehicles and equipment.
 

sloeffle

Minister of Fire
Mar 1, 2012
830
Central Ohio
As I said previously, if you are going to be moving heavy things often and high you will be disappointed in a 25HP machine. Cry once over buying a bigger machine, or cry every time you need to do something with the smaller machine and it won't do it. Via Kubota's web site, a machine in the 25HP range maximum lift capacity is around 1400lbs. There is no 25HP machine that can pick up 2,100lbs safely, that's a bunch of marketing BS. My 47HP machine can barely pick up a ton and the rear tires are off the ground and that's with an implement on the back and the rear tires are loaded with 800lbs of beet juice.

IMHO, quality wise between the four. I'd put Kubota at the top and Branson at the top the bottom and the other two are about equal.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: SpaceBus

andym

Feeling the Heat
Feb 6, 2020
409
Hicksville, Ohio
There is no 25HP machine that can pick up 2,100lbs safely, that's a bunch of marketing BS. My 47HP machine can barely pick up a ton and the rear tires are off the ground and that's with an implement on the back and the rear tires are loaded with 800lbs of beet juice.
So I shouldn't believe the manufacturers stated capacities? The model this post is about weighs the same as your tractor (minus the fluid in tires). Your exact model is advertised as capable of 2,500 lb lift.
The advertised lift is at the pivot point of the bucket. An 800 lb hay bale has enough forward weight to easily be the equivalent of 1200+ at the pivot.
I do realize the max lift and everyday usage should not be the same. My real question lies in other performance categories. Does the tractor have the power to pull any kind of load at all? Does it struggle to get its own weight up hill? Will it run out of power before traction?
 

sloeffle

Minister of Fire
Mar 1, 2012
830
Central Ohio
Lift capacity ratings on compact tractors are very similar to how GM, Dodge, and Ford rate their tow ratings on their trucks, one is trying to out due the other on paper. I'm a fan of real world usage, from real world usage I can tell you that my machine ( the tractor sitting in my barn ) cannot safely lift 2,500lbs. I had a pallet of sheep salt delivered to the house via semi truck and it was all it could do to pick up a little over 2,100lbs out of the semi. I had a 800 - 900lb wood chipper on the back of the tractor and rear tires were off the ground - 4WD FTW. That's why I'm confident in my statement that a 25HP machine cannot safely lift 2,100lbs.

I pull a 10' disc with my tractor and have never run out of power and traction in ideal conditions. Last year I pulled a 8' wide no till drill and it pulled it without issues also. My tractor has R4 tires, I'd suspect a machine with R1 tires is going to have better traction in dirt than what I will have. I've run out of traction before but I've always been in mud or deep snow.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,862
Downeast Maine
As I said previously, if you are going to be moving heavy things often and high you will be disappointed in a 25HP machine. Cry once over buying a bigger machine, or cry every time you need to do something with the smaller machine and it won't do it. Via Kubota's web site, a machine in the 25HP range maximum lift capacity is around 1400lbs. There is no 25HP machine that can pick up 2,100lbs safely, that's a bunch of marketing BS. My 47HP machine can barely pick up a ton and the rear tires are off the ground and that's with an implement on the back and the rear tires are loaded with 800lbs of beet juice.

IMHO, quality wise between the four. I'd put Kubota at the top and Branson at the top the bottom and the other two are about equal.
With no implement on the back my 45hp tractor struggled with carrying my PTO chipper shredder, tires came off the ground a little. Had to get the delivery guy to ride on the 3pt hitch!
 

duramaxman05

Minister of Fire
Aug 17, 2014
516
Perryville, Mo
As I said previously, if you are going to be moving heavy things often and high you will be disappointed in a 25HP machine. Cry once over buying a bigger machine, or cry every time you need to do something with the smaller machine and it won't do it. Via Kubota's web site, a machine in the 25HP range maximum lift capacity is around 1400lbs. There is no 25HP machine that can pick up 2,100lbs safely, that's a bunch of marketing BS. My 47HP machine can barely pick up a ton and the rear tires are off the ground and that's with an implement on the back and the rear tires are loaded with 800lbs of beet juice.

IMHO, quality wise between the four. I'd put Kubota at the top and Branson at the top the bottom and the other two are about equal.
You have to watch how they advertise the lifting specs. A lot of the Korean tractors looks like they have good lifting capacity but they use the breakout force for lifting capacity. Also when they said lifting however much weight to full height, is it at the pins or 500mm in front of the pins. Just pay close attention to that.
 
  • Like
Reactions: sloeffle

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,862
Downeast Maine
You have to watch how they advertise the lifting specs. A lot of the Korean tractors looks like they have good lifting capacity but they use the breakout force for lifting capacity. Also when they said lifting however much weight to full height, is it at the pins or 500mm in front of the pins. Just pay close attention to that.
Everyone does the same thing with the numbers. Most Cat 1 tractors are all made by the same outfit these days, but at least Kioti uses Woods loaders and backhoes. I think Woods might even make all of the Kioti branded tractor accessories/attachments/implements.
 

duramaxman05

Minister of Fire
Aug 17, 2014
516
Perryville, Mo
Everyone does the same thing with the numbers. Most Cat 1 tractors are all made by the same outfit these days, but at least Kioti uses Woods loaders and backhoes. I think Woods might even make all of the Kioti branded tractor accessories/attachments/implements.
Kioti makes everything themselves as far as I know. I used to work at a kioti dealer. But they could have changed in the recent years. I will say that deere and kubota are the only 2 major tractor brands that haven't been sold out. I know that a lot of older deere compacts were yanmar built and they still use yanmar engines today. Some of deere compacts now are deere built but powered by yanmar. Kubota has been kubota since day one. All other major USA branded tractors have all been bought out by other companies. New holland and caseih bought by fiat and the new compact tractors are built by ls. Massey ferguson is made by agco
 
  • Like
Reactions: sloeffle

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,862
Downeast Maine
Kioti makes everything themselves as far as I know. I used to work at a kioti dealer. But they could have changed in the recent years. I will say that deere and kubota are the only 2 major tractor brands that haven't been sold out. I know that a lot of older deere compacts were yanmar built and they still use yanmar engines today. Some of deere compacts now are deere built but powered by yanmar. Kubota has been kubota since day one. All other major USA branded tractors have all been bought out by other companies. New holland and caseih bought by fiat and the new compact tractors are built by ls. Massey ferguson is made by agco
I think Kioti switched to Woods for loaders and BH's in 2016. It must be a recent thing for JD to start building their own Cat 1 tractors again. Didn't know CaseIH went to Fiat, not that I think it's a bad thing.
 
  • Like
Reactions: duramaxman05

sloeffle

Minister of Fire
Mar 1, 2012
830
Central Ohio
Everyone does the same thing with the numbers. Most Cat 1 tractors are all made by the same outfit these days, but at least Kioti uses Woods loaders and backhoes. I think Woods might even make all of the Kioti branded tractor accessories/attachments/implements.
Yanmar uses all of their own components to build their tractor, even down to the loader. Most of the implements and backhoes they sell are made by Woods. I have a rebranded Yanmar cutter than is made by Woods. Woods is top of the line stuff along with Land Pride ( Kubota owns them now ).

Of the tractors I looked at, Kubota, Yanmar and Kioti were the only brands that were built completely by that company. From what I'm told Deere compact tractors are assembled by Deere by they don't "build" any of of the components. True or not, I don't know. Branson Tractors are owned by South Korean company. As @duramaxman05 pointed out Yanmar is one of the largest engine suppliers in the world. The last I heard TYM was the largest compact tractor manufacturer in the world.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,862
Downeast Maine
Yanmar uses all of their own components to build their tractor, even down to the loader. Most of the implements and backhoes they sell are made by Woods. I have a rebranded Yanmar cutter than is made by Woods. Woods is top of the line stuff along with Land Pride ( Kubota owns them now ).

Of the tractors I looked at, Kubota, Yanmar and Kioti were the only brands that were built completely by that company. From what I'm told Deere compact tractors are assembled by Deere by they don't "build" any of of the components. True or not, I don't know. Branson Tractors are owned by South Korean company. As @duramaxman05 pointed out Yanmar is one of the largest engine suppliers in the world. The last I heard TYM was the largest compact tractor manufacturer in the world.
TYM is the other company I was trying to think of that builds most of the compact tractors. I have no beef with Yanmar, I just have beef with paying JD prices for Yanmar stuff, hence why I have a Kioti. I don't blame anyone who buys a real Yanmar or a green one, they are quality tractors. I'm sure TYM tractors are fine tractors as well, but I would just buy a TYM and not a rebranded one.
 
  • Like
Reactions: sloeffle

duramaxman05

Minister of Fire
Aug 17, 2014
516
Perryville, Mo
The biggest thing to consider when buying a tractor is dealer network and parts availability. I have been real close to buying a tractor because the specs look good. But I always ask my self, is the dealer gonna be around in 10yrs and if not, where am I gonna get parts.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,862
Downeast Maine
The biggest thing to consider when buying a tractor is dealer network and parts availability. I have been real close to buying a tractor because the specs look good. But I always ask my self, is the dealer gonna be around in 10yrs and if not, where am I gonna get parts.
I can't agree with you more on this.
 
  • Like
Reactions: duramaxman05

hedge wood

Burning Hunk
Mar 1, 2009
199
Eastern NE
The biggest thing to consider when buying a tractor is dealer network and parts availability. I have been real close to buying a tractor because the specs look good. But I always ask my self, is the dealer gonna be around in 10yrs and if not, where am I gonna get parts.
This is very true. I worry more about the company being around. In my area years ago everyone had a Massey combine no matter what color tractor you ran. Massey went broke and parts got hard to get and everyone went to a Deere or CIH combine. Agco pickup Massey and the dealer came in the area and tried to sell Massey combine's no one bought one. Everyone still had that bad taste in there mouth. Massey's were good combines but if you can't get parts that's a big problem. That's why with my big tractors I stay with Deere I can get parts for a 200 HP 30 or 40 year old tractor. Try that with a 30-40 200 HP White.
 

andym

Feeling the Heat
Feb 6, 2020
409
Hicksville, Ohio
This is very true. I worry more about the company being around. In my area years ago everyone had a Massey combine no matter what color tractor you ran. Massey went broke and parts got hard to get and everyone went to a Deere or CIH combine. Agco pickup Massey and the dealer came in the area and tried to sell Massey combine's no one bought one. Everyone still had that bad taste in there mouth. Massey's were good combines but if you can't get parts that's a big problem. That's why with my big tractors I stay with Deere I can get parts for a 200 HP 30 or 40 year old tractor. Try that with a 30-40 200 HP White.
True enough. One big difference nowadays though is that most of the compact tractors are made by several South Korean companies that sell them world wide.
 
  • Like
Reactions: duramaxman05

duramaxman05

Minister of Fire
Aug 17, 2014
516
Perryville, Mo
One thing I also noticed when I worked at the kioti dealer. When I would torque bolts down, I always had to torque the bolts to the lowest number in the bolt torque range. I learned the hard way. I stripped out several bolt. I even sent off my snap on torque wrench to have recalibrated. The Korean tractors have the weight, but the steel quality is not on par with Deere or kubota. Again that's just something I noticed and should share with everyone.
 
  • Like
Reactions: brenndatomu

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,862
Downeast Maine
One thing I also noticed when I worked at the kioti dealer. When I would torque bolts down, I always had to torque the bolts to the lowest number in the bolt torque range. I learned the hard way. I stripped out several bolt. I even sent off my snap on torque wrench to have recalibrated. The Korean tractors have the weight, but the steel quality is not on par with Deere or kubota. Again that's just something I noticed and should share with everyone.
Maybe things have changed since you worked at a Kioti dealer or my dealer employs mechanics with a very light touch.
 
  • Like
Reactions: duramaxman05

duramaxman05

Minister of Fire
Aug 17, 2014
516
Perryville, Mo
Maybe things have changed since you worked at a Kioti dealer or my dealer employs mechanics with a very light touch.
I'm used to working on heavy equipment and everything is always tight and torqued high. Or maybe I had more wheaties than I usually do. Who knows.
 
  • Like
Reactions: SpaceBus

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,862
Downeast Maine
I'm used to working on heavy equipment and everything is always tight and torqued high. Or maybe I had more wheaties than I usually do. Who knows.
To be fair, I only took it in to get a valve stem replaced, and before that it was for a third function and second set of remotes. I don't particularly trust any dealers!
 
  • Like
Reactions: duramaxman05

sloeffle

Minister of Fire
Mar 1, 2012
830
Central Ohio
True enough. One big difference nowadays though is that most of the compact tractors are made by several South Korean companies that sell them world wide.
I don't know, I did still be a little hesitant. Ask the current owners of Cabela's and Bobcat v1 branded tractors and see what they have to say.