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Dutch

Tractors Alive?

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Dutch
Sometimes I wonder if machines are "alive" (in a SciFi way). After every one of my machines broke down at the same time during last years blizzard, I considered getting rid of them all. I even went so far as to estimate what they would sell for on eBay. I was talking with a friend in the shop and said, "These tractors are worth more dead than alive. I'm going to give them one more chance. I'll do everything reasonable, but machines seem to have a mind of their own and I can't anticipate everything." So far this year they have performed admirably. Not even one flat tire or broken belt. [img]/club2/attach/dutch/snow-fleet.jpg[/img]

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johnmonkey
That sounds like me last summer. I have 8 tractors (5 running) and I could not mow the lawn. All the tractors were down for one reason or another. I got some real wise (read smart alec) remarks from the wife "YOU MEAN YOU HAVE ALL THOSE TRACTORS AND CAN"T MOW THE LAWN!!" my respose (meekly) "yes dear". The good news is that they are back strong and I even just picked up my motor for the 3410 and she should be running soon. John H

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Agricola
Heck Dutch, if you are like me, I wait until something needs to get fixed and then I fix it. While fixing what needs to be fixed I also fix the things that WILL need to be fixed soon. So, like you, often things are quiet for a season or two.

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Dutch
quote:
Originally posted by johnmonkey
That sounds like me last summer. I have 8 tractors (5 running) and I could not mow the lawn. All the tractors were down for one reason or another. I got some real wise (read smart alec) remarks from the wife "YOU MEAN YOU HAVE ALL THOSE TRACTORS AND CAN"T MOW THE LAWN!!" my respose (meekly) "yes dear". The good news is that they are back strong and I even just picked up my motor for the 3410 and she should be running soon. John H
I wonder if wives hang out at another website? They sure do seem to make similar snide remarks. Maybe it just comes naturally.

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Dutch
quote:
Originally posted by Agricola
Heck Dutch, if you are like me, I wait until something needs to get fixed and then I fix it. While fixing what needs to be fixed I also fix the things that WILL need to be fixed soon. So, like you, often things are quiet for a season or two.
That's me too. Often I wait for the wheel to squeak before I oil it. Sometimes all the wheels start squeaking at the same time, then fall off before I can drive back to the shop. It always seems to happen just before dark, in 2 feet of snow, at about 10 degrees, when the stores will be closed the next day.

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HubbardRA
My wife actually came up with a term for this as related to our automobiles. We have three cars, hers, mine and my old Suburban work horse. Last summer two of them were dead and so was my Son's car. She calls this a "Driveway Virus". It seems to hit our area every two to three years. Had a similar problem with my tractors last summer. Just pulled out the old push mower and mowed the lawn, twice, and never said anything to the wife. Got the tractors back up and running without any remarks this time. Most of the snied remarks that I get are when she wants me to use a tractor to help with her flowers or something of that sort. She gets a little irate when it takes me an hour to get the tractor ready to do the 10 minute job for her. She just can't seem to understand the re-configuration that it takes for her little off-the-wall jobs. Some women just don't understand.

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Guest
I hear ya Herb. I went nearly a month with my snow remover down. But man its making up for it now!!!!! Ive had similar thought about batching and trading up. I keep thinking of the 900 dollars i spent, compared to the thousands id have to. Besides, i LOVE using these old simplicitys.

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Karl_Brandt
Dutch,nice looking fleet.
quote:
I was talking with a friend in the shop and said, "These tractors are worth more dead than alive. I'm going to give them one more chance. I'll do everything reasonable, but machines seem to have a mind of their own and I can't anticipate everything."
You must have scared the tractors when you said that.;);):D Karl

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Roy
Yes, machinery is alive and like a woman. Every once in a while it breaks for no apparent reason other than it wants attention, money spent on it, and some TLC. After the appropriate amount of pain, agony, and cash the unhappy machine (woman) responds and works beautifully for a while before it pitches the next fit. ;o) Or, if the you do not subscribe to the above, Murphy is alive and well.

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D-17_Dave
I feel your pain Dutch. Been there, done that. Lucky when I got the 212 up and running, (complete rebuild front to back) I haven't had the can't hepp its. I also think ya'll are going about this the wrong way, I don't here the "can't mow the yard" question. Last time I herd it I told her to fix it and mow the yard.:D:D Truth is when I got the HB 212 painted and going, I can't keep her off of it.[:0]:p

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Leroy
quote:
Originally posted by Roy
Yes, machinery is alive and like a woman. Every once in a while it breaks for no apparent reason other than it wants attention, money spent on it, and some TLC. After the appropriate amount of pain, agony, and cash the unhappy machine (woman) responds and works beautifully for a while before it pitches the next fit. ;o) Or, if the you do not subscribe to the above, Murphy is alive and well.
That would be me. LOL My name is Murphy And what ever could happen has happend with regard to getting and keeping a tractor. I have three and none work, and she is right , when she says, They are all just junk how much are you going to waste this time? They are junk to her because of the money spent and the work returned is insufficent to offset the expenditure. That is why i have some support for getting a new kubota. I may get the B2910 or the B7500.

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Dutch
quote:
Originally posted by Leroy
I have three and none work..... That is why i have some support for getting a new kubota. I may get the B2910 or the B7500.
Just remember the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. Your three machines could be put in good working order for a fraction of the cost of one new Kubota, and there is no guarantee that the Kubota will be working when you need it. I considered doing the same thing. I looked at a new Kubota. The cost with only some of the attachments I wanted was more than a new car.

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Tom_Byrne
I know the feeling Herb. The last storm was about a foot with lots of drifts- perfect for my 707 Broadmoor with snowblower and the only reason I kept it after I bought the 2010. Of course, it wont start. I have a warm spot for it because it was my first tractor, the kids had a blast in the yard driving it so there are some memories. However, I spend more time working on it than doing actual work with it. Every time I want to use it somthing elase breaks- fix it, then another problem pops up. Think it's time to send it down the road- but it would probably break down halfway there!

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Leroy
Fer sure the broken can be made whole again but i dont have the resources for parts, as many here do. It is a rare day when i am able to see one of those Simplictys or Allis Chalmers at work. Let alone find one for sale. The Kubotas are spendy but those who i have met that own em don't swear at them. I have spoke to a few owners who said they were waiting for the tractor to break down for one thing or another and they just keep going. I have read about some who were unhappy on the price of parts and still others who say the quanity of parts they had to buy were few for the work they got out of em. I am thinking long term where i won't have a need to buy another tractor, and the dealer is 4 miles from me. I have never bought a new car and the time is growing near when i will have the means to. So why not buy a new tractor? I may still repower the 7117 because the mower deck on that Kubota is 1700. A new motor for the 7117 is 1100.

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Dutch
Leroy, After I looked at new Kubotas, I did a "reality check" and asked myself what jobs I actually needed a tractor to do. Mowing the lawn was about it. You're right, the Kubota deck alone is $1700. A brand new Craftsman 18hp lawn tractor with a 42" deck can be bought for under $1000. Maybe the Craftsman won't give that "Simplicity" cut, but neither will the Kubota. Besides, I'm not trying to win any contests for best looking lawn. It's convenient to be able to clear snow myself, but I can hire someone to do that a few times a year. Even if I have to pay every winter, I won't have the expense and headache of buying, storing and maintaining equipment. As for all the other things my tractors can do, some are only required once a year, others are novelties. I can rent or borrow equipment, or I can do the work by hand the way I used to. Bottom line is, to me tractors are a hobby. I sure don't need a $15,000 lawn mower. For those who own farms or a business, that's a different story. As far as repairs or reconditioning, regardless of tractor make or model, Briggs and Kohler engine parts are readily available everywhere as are tires, batteries, bearings, belts, etc. For manufacturer specific repair parts, replacements are available by phone or the Internet. I've got the same situation as you, I do not live in "Simplicity" country. In fact, there aren't any kind of tractors locally. If I find an attachment, I either take a trip or pay shipping. If you need an engine for your 7117, consider something other than a new $1100 Kohler twin. There are plenty of good used engines available. A 10-16 hp single cylinder Briggs or Kohler will fit with very little work, and you'll be up and running for a few bucks.

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simplicity707
Well, same things happen to my Broadmoor. The engine finally gave up on. In the summer, I'm thinking of hauling it out to my grandpa's farm and parking it for good in one of his barns. The motor finally quit for good in it, I don't have the time to work on it anymore, so I think it'll get hauled out there. I hate to do it, but when you have a Yeoman, '64 Broadmoor, and a '70 B-208 (that i'm going to put back together one of these days), you don't have no time to work on it. In a few years, I may put it on the market. BTW, the pivot froze up on me.

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Leroy
Thank you for the logistical approach Dutch. I could pay someone to landscape my property and level my driveway and mow my grass annually and maybe i should initially. The wife saw that i paid 245 dollars to have a 20 hp onan shipped to a location 30 miles away. and 220 to buy it. And i cannot find the support i need to make the connection to the 7117 and one of the feet were broken off. It has been a series of losing propositions in an effort to save money from buying a throw away tractor. She is not supportive of buying anything for the old and she does not want me to buy a new one. She has seen the junk pile up and she sees the junk being sold new only to find it in a heap in the sears parking lot the very next year. I am tired of the un level landscape and i don't see much a future in paying to have the rented tractor deliverd and picked up. only to have enough time to learn the controls before i have to give it back, because my weekend is over. I think the resale value of a good tractor will be better than that of a used car, year for year. Some new car owners have wanted to use their new cars as a plow from time to time but their frames can't take the abuse. Spending the money to get a new or a good used motor on my 7117 tractor still will only allow for mowin as i don't have any other implements due to the hens teeth that they are. I would end up paying thru the nose to get em or go without as i have. So paying thru the nose for a piece of equipment that has a favorable history and is still being made and will no doubt remain in business for many years to come is what i think is a wise decision. The main reason is i will continue to get atta boys from those who know Kubotas and my wife will eventually be at ease with it. As it is now she has a good following of those who can easily agree with her.

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