Sitka Gear
Picking A Tractor
Equipment
Contributors to this thread:
Shaner94 22-Feb-23
Glunt@work 22-Feb-23
Shaner94 22-Feb-23
JTreeman 22-Feb-23
Vaquero 45 22-Feb-23
cnelk 22-Feb-23
Spoiler123 22-Feb-23
Charlie Rehor 22-Feb-23
Shaner94 22-Feb-23
JC3 22-Feb-23
Pat Lefemine 22-Feb-23
320Bull 22-Feb-23
Grey Ghost 22-Feb-23
Buckdeer 22-Feb-23
Pop-r 22-Feb-23
cnelk 22-Feb-23
Shaner94 22-Feb-23
KY EyeBow 22-Feb-23
BOHUNTER09 22-Feb-23
Kurt 22-Feb-23
Grey Ghost 22-Feb-23
buckhammer 22-Feb-23
scentman 22-Feb-23
Tradmike 22-Feb-23
INbowdude 22-Feb-23
milnrick 22-Feb-23
GFL 22-Feb-23
Vaquero 45 22-Feb-23
Wildan2 22-Feb-23
Pop-r 22-Feb-23
Vaquero 45 22-Feb-23
Glunt@work 22-Feb-23
Glunker 22-Feb-23
sundowner 22-Feb-23
Shaner94 22-Feb-23
Julius Koenig 23-Feb-23
Julius Koenig 23-Feb-23
Grey Ghost 23-Feb-23
Deertick 23-Feb-23
Topper 23-Feb-23
Topper 23-Feb-23
Vaquero 45 23-Feb-23
Beendare 23-Feb-23
KHNC 23-Feb-23
deerhunter72 23-Feb-23
Shaner94 23-Feb-23
Missouribreaks 23-Feb-23
Bake 23-Feb-23
Norseman 23-Feb-23
Shaner94 23-Feb-23
Shaner94 23-Feb-23
Ollie 23-Feb-23
deerhunter72 23-Feb-23
Norseman 23-Feb-23
t-roy 23-Feb-23
Smtn10PT 24-Feb-23
M.Pauls 24-Feb-23
fuzzy 24-Feb-23
Shaner94 24-Feb-23
Buckdeer 24-Feb-23
Jerry Gille 24-Feb-23
Shaner94 26-Feb-23
t-roy 26-Feb-23
GFL 26-Feb-23
Norseman 26-Feb-23
Smtn10PT 27-Feb-23
fuzzy 27-Feb-23
Jaybee 27-Feb-23
Grey Ghost 27-Feb-23
Shaner94 27-Feb-23
bluedog 27-Feb-23
Bwhnt 27-Feb-23
carcus 27-Feb-23
Beendare 19-Oct-23
From: Shaner94
22-Feb-23
Hello everyone. About 2 years ago my wife and I got 10 acres outside of town and built on it. I have lived in the city limits my whole life, so this owning land thing has been new to me. I have been borrowing my father in law's tractor for everything, but I'm sick of borrowing. I think it's time to buy. First of all let me say, the little work I've done with my father in law's tractor is the extent of my knowledge on tractors. Although I have been reading a lot the last 6 months and visited a few dealerships this last weekend. I will need the tractor for snow removal, corral cleaning, moving small amounts of dirt, back blade driveway, possibly some post hole drilling, every few years re-dragging/cleaning my ditches, spreading manure, other pasture work. No plans to start haying. In your opinion what size tractor would I need for all this? I do think I want 4WD. I have been thinking I want a 40-50 horse 4WD. Is that too big? Of course I do have a budget and those bigger tractors are very expensive, even used. Any opinions would be much appreciated. Thanks.

From: Glunt@work
22-Feb-23
For most of what you listed, a skid steer sounds like a better fit. None are inexpensive but skids are faster work better in close quarters and carry a lot. They are not good for any field work.

From: Shaner94
22-Feb-23
I thought about a skid steer, but I do have a decent amount of attachments I will use on the back of the tractor. Thanks.

From: JTreeman
22-Feb-23
I was gonna say the same thing, that sounds more like skid steer work.

—jim

From: Vaquero 45
22-Feb-23
If you go the tractor route buy the rite Kubota . Lol

I agree with Don on the SS pro's and cons . Maybe premium over the tire tracks when needed on the SS . LIKe near 2K . Also if you don't know what you are doing time consuming pain in the rear to put on especially. BTW the old IHI compact trackloaders , SS, excavators which were excellent units at a great price point are now sold under yellow branded " KATO " . I believe there main dist center in Ohio . Avoid DEF . Just my 2cents. Don't claim to be a know it All !

From: cnelk
22-Feb-23
Snow removal - you’ll definitely want a tractor with a cab. Especially since you’re in Wyoming

From: Spoiler123
22-Feb-23
I was on the fence and ended up with jd 1025r. Plenty of power in this machine to do what I need and don't need a big truck/trailer to haul it.

22-Feb-23
My brother Founded Summit Tractors. Check ‘em out.

25 HP for 20k. See them at Tractor Supply.

From: Shaner94
22-Feb-23
Am I correct that tractors under 25 horse you don't have to deal with burn off, emissions and DEF? Thought I read that somewhere. Yeah, everyone tells me to make sure I get a cab.... costs more too though.

From: JC3
22-Feb-23
Look at Kubota L 2501 4 wd 25 hp. no emission filters to deal with. Called a compact but not really, has alot of torque for the engine size, has a good sized frame and weighs enough. If you are a little mechanical you can modify the engine to over 30 hp. very easily. I have owned 3 other Kubota's this will be my last.

From: Pat Lefemine
22-Feb-23
I have a different view on this. I wouldn’t recommend a skidsteer, too much money and not great for plot chores.

I’d look at a popular brand like kubota, Deere, New Holland. I made the mistake of getting an off brand that I can’t get service or parts for and will never make that mistake again.

If your budget is unlimited then go with a cab in the 50hp range. But in all honesty for the size of your property you can save a lot of money by going with an open station in the 28-35hp range. You won’t be required to have DEF or any of that ridiculous emissions nonsense that screws up every tractor.

4x4 is a must, so is a loader.

Good luck.

From: 320Bull
22-Feb-23
I bought a John Deere 2320 about 10 years ago when I was in a similar situation. I think its 26hp basically the same motor as the 1025 mentioned. I mow my lawn, snow blow, move dirt and landscape rocks, grade the driveway (1000 ft), clear smallish trees and some larger ones as well but its hard on it. It has served me very well. In most cases a small tractor can do what a larger one can it just takes longer. Obviously they cant lift as much. If I were to do it over I would bump the size up into the 30 something and add a cab with a FRONT blower. I have a rear and its less than fun to use

From: Grey Ghost
22-Feb-23
Agree with Pat, only I'd go 40-50 HP with a loader. I have a 45 HP New Holland with a loader and no cab, and I do much of the same chores you are talking about.

One thing is certain, you will NEVER wish you had a less power. At least that's been my experience. I absolutely love my little tractor. I've owned it for 20 years. Other than routine maintenance, the only repairs I've had to make was one leaking hydraulic line.

Matt

From: Buckdeer
22-Feb-23
Most are 0% interest and make sure it's not a gray model Kubota if going with them.

From: Pop-r
22-Feb-23
Buy a John Deere and take care of it and you'll never regret it. Their E series tractors are all you need. Something like a 5045E.

From: cnelk
22-Feb-23
I grew up in N Minnesota moving snow, feeding cattle with a tractor/loader and no cab.

Never again. That’s just nuts in cold, snow country.

From: Shaner94
22-Feb-23
Thanks guys all good advice it seems. Any opinions on a John Deere 3038e? There is one in town here, 2017 model with only 90 hours. Resonably priced. I was also debating a brand new Bobcat 2040, 40 horse. $6000 more than the used 3038e, but I would have a waranty. I've been told the 40 horse Bobcat is the same as the 40 horse Kioti, just paited white. Opinions on that?

From: KY EyeBow
22-Feb-23
If you are getting a smaller HP tractor(less than 75 HP), definitely look at a Kubota if you have a dealer somewhat close to you.

From: BOHUNTER09
22-Feb-23
Shaneer94. A friend of mine had a 3038e. He did all the things you described and more. With those low hours, it would be a good choice

From: Kurt
22-Feb-23
I've had a 2002 model year JD 4600 hydro transmission 43 HP with 4-wheel drive and front end loader since 2007. Worked well in CO for snow removal with a 6' wide 3-point attached rear snow blower and Curtis Cab (like stock JD cab). Had a heater and wipers, but no AC.

Moved to BC and built a house on 7 acres so sold the rear blower and Curtis Cab in CO. Bought a JD 480 backhoe that is frame mounted for it. At 2400 hrs the tractor is going strong. Really like the hydro transmission for what I do which is mainly loader work for dirt, gravel or snow moving, plus positioning for backhoe work. For field work associated with farming, gears might be a better choice for most efficient power transfer to the tires.

No DEF in this era tractor. The tractor (Yanmar 4 cylinder, 2.0 liter diesel) starts easily with the block heater plugged in...I use winter weight oil in it for snow season. No cab where I live now is good, as unless it was air conditioned for summer use, it would be too HOT.

From: Grey Ghost
22-Feb-23
How much do they want for the JD 3038e? 90 hours is nothing. Does it have a loader?

Matt

From: buckhammer
22-Feb-23
Whatever manufacturer you purchase just make sure you have a dealer near by for support. For example don't drive by the John Deere dealer that is 20 miles from your house to get to the Kubota dealer that is 100 miles away because someone told you Kubota is the only tractor to buy.

I have lived on a farm my entire life and tractors that are trouble free are like a Boone & Crockett buck. They are out there but you may never see one in your life. And as a few others have suggested if at all possible stay away from any tractors that require DEF.

From: scentman
22-Feb-23
Pop-r x2, I have yet to hear any negatives...my friends who own them love Deere, and they don't lose their value on resale or trade in. Think of it as an investment,.

From: Tradmike
22-Feb-23
I have 2 tractors and a skid steer. I use the skidsteer way more than the tractors. Choose a tractor brand that has a local dealership and a good service department. Cabs are nice but take alot of damage if u work around trees. U may be able find a nice tractor on FB Marketplace.

From: INbowdude
22-Feb-23
I have a Kubota BX23. I use the hell out of that thing, bucket, backhoe, belly mower, and 4wd. I'm on only 5 acres but it goes it night places. I do wish the engine was bigger. I would go up higher and have a bit larger tires. Best of luck on your hunt for a tractor.

From: milnrick
22-Feb-23
We bought a 35 hp Branson (made in GA), 4wd, with loader bucket, bush hog and an auger in 2018, and purchased a 6' disc separately 2 years later. My only regret was/is not getting a cultipacker in place of the auger.

We're very happy with it.

From: GFL
22-Feb-23
I personally wouldn’t even look at an E model John Deere. You can pretty much Google why. M series is a totally different tractor.

From: Vaquero 45
22-Feb-23
"Vaquero 45, you mentioned "avoid DEF". What are the details of avoiding it? I used to know... Above a certain hsp or newer than a certain year, correct?" ? Yes kinda all of the above anything over 74 hp except some Mahindra tractors not sure don't remember . Requires DEF fluid . Sometimes even hard to find or big time rising cost . More maintanance etc . Except you don't need anything that large . As we know lots of Deere tractors run " Yanmar " engines . Yanmar makes tractors , etc also . Alittle of topic but Yanmar makes one heck of an excavator .

From: Wildan2
22-Feb-23
visit:www.tractorbynet.com for hours of reading.We have three Kubotas in the family.

From: Pop-r
22-Feb-23
You can't go wrong with the 3038E you've mentioned unless it's burnt or something and provided it has a loader.

From: Vaquero 45
22-Feb-23
To OP ' I like a gear tractor , 8 speed / 12 etc with clutch , but for quick forward and backward work etc , you'd be better of with a hydrostat / hydro tractor .

From: Glunt@work
22-Feb-23
When the temps drop, we have DEF issues on our newer tractors. They have heaters but all seem flakey. Lines away from heaters freeze, heaters go out. More than once we couldnt get going or a tractor de-rates when you need it.

From: Glunker
22-Feb-23
Have a dealer close by. 35 hp min. If hilly you need 4x4. Loader is mandatory, not sure about a cab. Kabuto, allis or new holland hold their value. If you need rear hydraulics make sure they are included. Consider loading rear tires with liquid for traction. No turf tires.

From: sundowner
22-Feb-23
Kubota +/- 45 hp, 4wd, shuttle-shift with front end loader. Add a tooth bar to the loader bucket.

From: Shaner94
22-Feb-23
Greyghost, the JD 3038 comes with a new brush hog and a garden box, whatever that is. Yes, it has a loader. He’s asking $20,500. Older guy. Says he has two older tractors and he just can’t get used to this tractor’s transmission so he’s selling it and sticking with his older tractors. And yes, we have a JD dealer here with what I’ve heard good service. We do have a Kubota dealer here too. Thanks for all the other input everyone, lots to think about.

23-Feb-23
I have a kioti 35 hp 4x4. It’s been fantastic. I do wish I had gone up to 45 hp. But for the most part I wouldn’t need it. I have a 64” snow blower, brush hog, rototiller, and a couple blades. It’s very handy in the woods, and can turn on a dime.

23-Feb-23
I have a kioti 35 hp 4x4. It’s been fantastic. I do wish I had gone up to 45 hp. But for the most part I wouldn’t need it. I have a 64” snow blower, brush hog, rototiller, and a couple blades. It’s very handy in the woods, and can turn on a dime.

From: Grey Ghost
23-Feb-23
I'd snag that JD 3038e in a heart beat for that price, especially with the additional implements.

Matt

From: Deertick
23-Feb-23
Sounds like as good a deal as you'll get for that 3038.

I've had a New Holland TC30 (similar size) for similar chores for >20 years ... damn thing won't quit, and it doesn't get babied.

From: Topper
23-Feb-23
Agree that the 3038E should do everything you are looking to do and that seems like a reasonable price in todays world. The only thing you may want to look at is if it has a mid pto installed. I don't think that a mid pto is a standard option on that model. Not a deal breaker but if your thinking about a jd front mounted snowblower it requires a mid pto

From: Topper
23-Feb-23
Sorry. got to click happy

From: Vaquero 45
23-Feb-23
TractorData.com good info .

DeerTick thats cause it has that Shibaura engines , that series bullet proof . Only gives some electrical issues like blowing fuses and stuff .

From: Beendare
23-Feb-23
A mid size Kubota fits the bill.

I would just add, someone that hasn’t driven a lot of equipment benefits from these models with the shuttle shift transmissions.

Anyone can drive them…they stop when you let your foot up…and they are fast and excel at typical Forward/back application

From: KHNC
23-Feb-23
I have a Kubota L3901 4WD HST with Loader. 37HP. Best implement i now own is a root grapple. Everyone should have one! Have to have a 3rd function valve added though. Easy to switch from bucket to grapple as well. Other implements i have are a 5' bush hog, 6' rake , 6' blade and a 6' spring plow.

From: deerhunter72
23-Feb-23
Seems like a good price on that 3038. I think it would everything you described and then some. You might be able to get a cab for it if you wanted. We have Case DX33 and it does pretty much everything I need it to for my 50 acres. If I had more ground or had to do much more mowing than what I have to do, then I would want something bigger. Good luck to you!

From: Shaner94
23-Feb-23
Again, thanks for all the input.

23-Feb-23
35 - 50 HP.

From: Bake
23-Feb-23
Get a big name and take care of it and keep it inside. It is an investment. My dad has an 85 hp Case that I use a lot. Bought new in the late '90s before DEF was a thing. It's worth damn near as much as he paid for it anymore. I jokingly say it's the only thing my brother and I will fight over some day. We only live 3 miles apart, we may just have to co-own it :)

From: Norseman
23-Feb-23
What is your father in-laws tractor? What do you like/dislike about that tractor you have been using. Use that experience to help you start the navigation you need for this purchase of your own ranch tractor. That 3028 is pretty light and narrow. I would go with a heavier tractor with more HP, especially if it’s hydrostatic. Avoid anything with emissions control. 2017 3028 price tag was probably around 20k. If you get it with a loader, building a 800# 3 point ballast for the back is the first thing you should do. Filling up that garden basket with sand bags is another option.

From: Shaner94
23-Feb-23
Norseman, father in law's tractor is a 45 horse Montana, 4WD, with a cab. I haven't heard much good about Montana tractors and I know they don't make them anymore. It has worked great for me when I borrow it, the problem is I'm not the only one borrowing it. Other family members do too and it's a pain in the ass. I want my own tractor parked in my own barn. In a dream world I would love to buy a 50 horse Kubota or JD with a cab, but I don't have $30,000+ right now.

From: Shaner94
23-Feb-23
On another note, I read a lot about avoiding tractors with emissions, buy pre-emissions. If I'm looking at 40-50 horse tractors what year is the latest I can buy to avoid emissions? How many hours is too many hours if I buy a used? I am seeing some decent 20 year old 50 horse tractors with cabs in the low $20,000s, but they have 3000+ hours on them.

From: Ollie
23-Feb-23
For what you have described, a 30-35 hp tractor should do fine. I had a 28 hp Mahindra with loader, 5’ bush hog mower, and 5 ‘ rotary tiller. Wished I had a little more hp to run the implements but was able to getter done with what I had.

From: deerhunter72
23-Feb-23
Shaner94, just my opinion, but if you are really wanting a 50hp with a cab and you are fine with spending $20k on a lesser tractor, then don’t let $10k more stand in your way.

From: Norseman
23-Feb-23
2015 - present is Tier 4 “emission” control

2012-2014 some emission control tractors started hitting the market

Pre 2012 is emission control-free

Dont be afraid to look at older tractors from the 70’s and 80’s with more hours Some of those older tractors were bullet proof and with 4,000 hours will still out last and out perform todays new technology. You can get one hell of a tractor with loader for 20k Get the “TractorHouse “ app and start looking. Compare brand data with Tractor Data. Build up some tractor ed and pricing so you know a good deal when you see it.

From: t-roy
23-Feb-23
^^^Norseman X2. Machinerypete.com is another good source.

From: Smtn10PT
24-Feb-23
On that amount of land you arent going to put a ton of hours on your machine. I wouldnt be afraid of an older machine. I found a JD 1250 last year and am quite happy with it. 4WD and mid 40's for HP. Its done everything Ive needed it to do on my 45 acres.

From: M.Pauls
24-Feb-23
Sounds like you’re narrowing in already on what you want. I’ll add my two cents anyways as threads can have value for others that are following along. I’ve had a few tractors and work with them quite a bit. My first unit was a Kubota MX5100 (50hp) with hydrostatic transmission. I miss this tractor. It was pre emissions, no cab, basic tractor, big enough and not too big. Could usually squeak 2000 pound lift out of the loader which it definitely wasn’t rated for and wasn’t comfortable, which ultimately led me to a bigger tractor.

Then I bought a Kubota 125X. Awesome machine. Most here probably wouldn’t look that big, but we got serious about farming, and it was time for a “real” tractor. But dang it, it’s big in the yard and around buildings, not like my 50hp.

Now I also bought a tracked skid steer (and kept the 125x) the skid steer allows me to work inside the barn, clean manure 4x as fast and about 100 other things on the farm 4x as fast. Honestly, since the snow flew here and I have the skid steer I haven’t even started the 125x. It actually went to my buddy’s cattle operation down the road as his new JD went down and dealer is waiting a few months for parts. This skid steer gets started pretty well daily and it is so dang handy and quick. If a guy doesn’t need to do field work, I’d recommended one any day of the week. Mine is a Kubota SVL-75 High Flow if it matters. But until there’s field work to do, it gets used over the big loader every time

From: fuzzy
24-Feb-23
I'd look at Kubota 4wd units in the 25 to 30 HP range and with a loader with interchangeable attachment capabilities. If money isn't a huge concern get a detachable backhoe

From: Shaner94
24-Feb-23
Thanks again everyone for the input.

From: Buckdeer
24-Feb-23
The American Land Man podcast that came out today is about picking a tractor and so happens the guys from Summit are on there. Another good podcast is The Land Podcast

From: Jerry Gille
24-Feb-23
I bought a new 3038e in 2012 with fel and a 6' JD blade for $18,500. I use it alot and have never had a single problem with it. No mid pto and no factory rear hydrolics but I have never needed either. It is light and narrow so keep that in mind. It is tippy on hillsides when you raise that bucket with any weight. It is not a bull dozier nor is it a serious row cropping machine. I have always stayed within its limits and it's done what I've asked. It trailers easily too. Just know what you expect to use a tractor for before you go buying one. Make your choice accordingly and stay within your limits.

From: Shaner94
26-Feb-23
Well as luck would have it I found a guy just down the road from me who is moving into town and doesn’t want his equipment anymore. He has a really really nice and clean 1980 John Deere 2440 loader with only 740 hours on it and with tire chains, post hole digger, ditcher, harrow, rear blade, John Deere brush hog, and there was something else that I’m forgetting. Everything works. $10,000 for all of it. This is a no-brainer isn’t it?

From: t-roy
26-Feb-23
If it’s as nice as you’re describing it, I’d say that’s a whale of a deal.

From: GFL
26-Feb-23
Way better than an E series. I was glad when mine sold. Not 1 but 3 of them. They were an electrical nightmare.

From: Norseman
26-Feb-23
If it runs and operates as it should, that is a very nice deal. There may be a reason it has <800 hours on it. Go check it out. That is a perfect size tractor and a solid 60hp.

From: Smtn10PT
27-Feb-23
Screaming deal, dont let that hit facebook marketplace or it'll be gone.

From: fuzzy
27-Feb-23
Sounds like a great deal!

From: Jaybee
27-Feb-23
If you plan on doing snow removal with it make sure you get a 4wd. Huge difference. I would suggest a 50-70 hp tractor with a loader and third function on the FEL. Also make sure you have a place inside to store it. In my opinion tractors should not be left outside. I have a New Holland TN65 with a FEL and 4wd. I love it. It is big enough to run a 7 foot tiller and also pull a fertilizer cart loaded with a ton of fertilizer up a hill but yet small enough to do smaller food plots. I also purchased a T190 bobcat last year and use that quite a bit as well.

From: Grey Ghost
27-Feb-23
Unfortunately, I don't think the JD 2440 is 4WD. That would be a deal breaker for me, since I plow snow with mine, and the 4WD does make a big difference.

Matt

From: Shaner94
27-Feb-23
Yeah it's not 4 WD. That's the only thing I'm bummed about. Figured for the price and all the attachments...what the heck, buy it. Hopefully the chains will help.

From: bluedog
27-Feb-23
Put liquid ballast in the rear tires. With chains it will do pretty good. Not as good as 4wd of course but good.

From: Bwhnt
27-Feb-23
You will definitely need weight in the back to do much of anything with the loader. Might need a 3 point hitch type of weight block. I have a New Holland tc40a with loaded rear tires, which is a 4 wd tractor. If I'm in 2 wd, I can't pick up a bucket of snow and back up if I am heading downhill. I leave my backhoe on all winter just for the ballast.

From: carcus
27-Feb-23
Skid steer gets my vote, pretty freaking handy

From: Beendare
19-Oct-23
I'm with Pat and the guys saying no skid steer. ...and thats from a guy thats owned 20 of them. SS is great for construction oriented projects....but farm requires tow behind implements, SS is all out in front of you, it's hard to see behind you.

The Hydrostatic tractors someone recommended are easy and fast- anyone can drive them with 5 minutes of instruction. I doubt you need 40hp...the small ones are pretty darn good on a small piece of property.

For the SS guys, I switched to Tacheuchi- superior to the Bobcats in every way....and cheaper.

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