Homesteading Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
100 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Question...

We are looking to buy something for when we get another piece of property. This property will likely be 10 or less acres. Most of the acreage is wooded and won't be used for anything. The actual acreage would be 3-5 acres that need to be maintained regularly. That said, we don't want to spend 25K on a tractor with front loader and major attachments unless it's absolutely required.

My question is what is the minimum I can get away with? I know I will need 4wd for sure, but as far as horsepower? We will use it to push or blow snow and I see that even the compact riding mowers come with pull behind brush hog options and snow blower options. We will need to cut grass and brush hogs aren't great with grass cutting.... I guess I am torn because I do not know right now if a front loader option is something I would need. :/

My question is more related to Kubota specifically because I have used them and like them the most. General specs will work too though!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
569 Posts
I will say this. I've lived here for 20 years now on 6 acres - 1/2 wooded and 1/2 lawn. I spent the first 10 years with a Deere mower with a front plow and chains (2-wheel drive) - it was the typical size of a garden tractor (Deere 332). I then upgraded to a compact diesel 4WD with a loader and belly mower (Deere 2520). I don't know how I ever survived without the loader.

I thought the same thing all those years - that I didn't need a loader. Well I'm here to tell you that I was wrong. I use the loader for plowing snow on my 850' gravel drive. I now also have a set of forks for it which are also something that I would never be without.

Since you have Kubota in your title (I'm a Deere guy) do yourself a favor and try out a sub-compact or compact at the dealer. Having a 4WD tractor with a loader is priceless.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
100 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I would love a loader, and I know Kubota offers a BX series that have loader options and I believe those are the subcompact series. Just don't know if the $5k+ difference is worth it for a subcompact to a compact. Kubota is weird especially with the loader. If you build a package with a subcompact the loader package includes everything. If you bump up to a compact you have to build the loader package piece by piece... and the price starts to climb exponentially!

Thinking about it, it would really only be used for pushing snow, moving firewood, etc. typical light-medium duty work. Maybe a subcompact would work okay.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,075 Posts
You will spend your money twice.......I did.
Those mowers, ....with attachments are too small, too light, and not enough HP....and will just frustrate you.
Do it right
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,931 Posts
I bought a used Kuboda tractor... Best investment I made. Used it like a third arm. Had a bucket and a gannon - box scraper. You'd be surprised at what you find you can use it for.
 

·
Hello, hello....is there anybody in there.....?
Joined
·
78,933 Posts
You need a tractor and a smaller mower to do all the things you listed safely and efficiently.
A small Kubota diesel sips fuel and will outwork even the largest "garden tractors".
Just be extremely careful using a front end loader because the small tractors will turn over very easily.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,860 Posts
The older you get, the more valuable a good tractor becomes. That said, the phrase "buying the minimum tractor I can get away with" is most certainly a guarantee that you will not be fully satisfied with the tractor you purchase.
Buying less than you want can work for clothing, cars, boats and most discretional items; maybe buying underpowered equipment can work for an urban/suburban family. When you are a rural/self sufficient/homesteading type landowner, you are almost always better off buying the tractor you need rather than what you thought you could afford.
I knew a guy years ago who never would buy an oil filter wrench. He'd punch a screwdriver in the filter to break it loose. Horrible mess everytime to save $2.
If I had your concerns, I'd look in the used market. Compact tractors can out live most of us with regular maintenance, and you can likely find used tractors 5-7 years old for the price of a new sub compact.
Brush hogs are for keeping pasture grass cut down, finish mowers are for making it look good. SCUTs are limited to the smaller size pull behind units. I can't imagine not having a front end loader, but that is my own personal situation. You could probably get a three point carry all for behind the tractor as a cheaper option.
Scrimp on vacations and dinner out, don't short change yourself on your equipment.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
17 Posts
May I suggest a Ford 8XX series tractor. These go from $1000 to $5000. You can buy a used 860 or 840 for about $2500, and a full set of used implements costs another $2000. Don't be afraid of the 801 select-o-speed; that transmission, if it is running right when you buy it, will last your lifetime. Now you have everything you need for a small country place for less than $5000, and the tractor you buy will probably have 35 or higher HP. There is nothing like a backhoe bucket loader for convenience, but you don't have to own one because you can rent or borrow one. I went without a B/B loader for 20 years when I bought an old Ford model 775, and I wondered why I ever went without one. The BH/BL is the most useful tool on the place. Beware of bucket loader attachments for tractors because they are death traps that always need instant maintenance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
294 Posts
I've got an L3800 with loaded tires and a FEL. I cannot use it for mowing grass as it will tear up the lawn in anything but the driest weather.(especially in 4 wheel drive) I bought forks for the FEL and use it quite often. The bucket and a box blade are very handy. There has to be some weight behind the tractor to get any safe use out of the FEL. I poured a 55 gallon drum full of concrete(1000 lbs) and rigged it to attach to the 3 point hitch. I take the FEL off to do my bush hogging as the FEL makes the tractor less stable on uneven ground. The FEL is easy to attach/detach on fairly level ground. The 5 foot bush hog will knock down most anything you would want a bush hog for. I kind of wish I had bought a 6 foot bush hog but the extra weight might have caused steering problems as the front end can get light now.

I also have an older Ford 1110(16hp) with a 4 foot bush hog.(no fluid in the tires) It is slower going with the bush hog but has cut fields well enough. Sometimes I think I'm pushing it too hard. You can get a under belly mower for it but the 4 wheel drive still cuts up the lawn when you go to turn.

I can't answer your questions but hope my experience might be helpful in some way.

JMO
Doug
 

·
Do it in the dirt
Joined
·
269 Posts
I went with the BX-25, its the perfect SCUT for 10 acres. It has the 48 inch FEL, 60 inch MMM and BH mounted to sub-frame and came with 3 point hitch kit for other attachments. I clear snow on 1600 ft drive way, dig trenches, dig holes, carry all kinds of items aroubd in FEL, spread gravel in my drive way, I mow everything the mower eats up tall grass like Tasmanian Devil. Granted it does have limitations but I am extremely happy with that little tractor
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,992 Posts
I wouldn't want to mow my lawn with a field tractor. And I wouldn't want to do field work with my lawn mower.

One size fits all rarely fits all well.

I'd much rather have a decent lawn mower (I'm a fan of zero turn mowers) for non-field areas and a tractor for things more suited for it. Neither have to be super expensive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
It depends somewhat on how much of that will be lawnlike or more rough-cut pasture. How hilly your land is and how many obstacles you have to mow around will also be a consideration. I finish mow about 2 acres every 1-2 weeks. The first season I just used a little old Kubota B6100 4WD sub compact tractor with a 4 foot brush mower. Not ideal, but it's what I had to work with at the time. My place is fairly hilly and has enough stuff to mow around that it would take me over 3 hours to mow my place.

Since then I've gone to a dedicated mower and would never go back. I can go faster, with a smoother ride, and don't waste time maneuvering a tractor with a comparatively lousy turning radius. I cut my mowing time in half and that includes mowing a few extra spots that would have been dangerous to take the tractor. The mower I got was also a Kubota. It's a used GF1800 with 4WD. It's a smallish (by commercial standards) front-mount mower. It handles hills better than a zero turn. If my place was flatter I'd probably have opted for a zero turn though.

If you can swing it, go for a dedicated mower in addition to the tractor. For 3-5 acres a used commercial mower is a better investment than a brand new homeowner model from the big box stores.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top