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Auctioned Roper

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I just got back from attending my first ever auction that had tractors up for grabs. There wasn't much in the way of garden tractors but one that caught my eye was a Roper 13. I couldn't stay around long enough to see it sold but was very impressed with how it was made. It had a hydrostatic drive, 13 hp engine and seemed to be well made. I tried to find some information on it online but couldn't find anything. Curious, what do you guys think of them?

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Morris
Hey Beez...I think Ropers were fairly good quality, but never owned one myself. If I'm not mistaken they were built tough not unlike the Gilsons, which were quality units. Unless I'm thinking of something else entirely....which is possible considering this past week I've put on a new roof coat, fixed a furnace, drove 3 hours to fix my dad's MTD and spent time getting a new (used) 4x4 truck. All in about 4 days. Plus work. I'm tired!

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GWGAllisfan
I was told the ropers were the same as older sears craftsmans? Some where the roper company merged with some others and became AYP? I was told that but I don't know it to be true.

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patrician12
It seems all the old stuff had great quality.It just didn't have the technology like electronic ignition,alternators and self starters.Frames were 1/4" steel,gear boxes cast iron and no plastic used.I appreciate the A/C s because ease to work on the and to switch attachments is unparalleled.Afriend gave me an old Gilson and anothet a Craftsman just to change drive belts was an odessey.

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Kent
quote:
Originally posted by Beeser
So, the Ropers are the same as the Sears Suburban tractors?
Not sure they're exactly the same, because Sears always has things made to their specifications. But, I think the running gear is the same...

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Sandy
Most of the Ropers from the era I'm thinking of which was around '69-75 or so had Briggs engines I believe while the Sears generally had Tecumsehs. I also know that for the 2 cylinder versions like the Sears SS16 which had an Onan engine. A Roper would've had a 2 cylinder opposed twin Briggs 16 hp. Also while a Sears was usually mustard yellow and white a Roper would be red and white and the grills were somewhat different but the rest of the frame and rear end would be identical. I'm almost sure the attachments between the units would fit each other also. There were a ton more Sears tractors made so those attachments would be far easier to locate. I've had quite a few of the old Suburbans and they are a real good tractors both for availability of parts and general upkeep. Richard

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dhardin
I know of 2 snow blowers for sale that fit a Ropper/Sears tractor. They were bought at a sale when they closed the plant near Chicago, some years back. I picked up a small Gillson/Wards blower this summer at a auction. No one would bid on it and they gave it to me, man its well made and heavy. Just my Irish luck I guess. I have been to maybe 20 auctions this summer and have not seen any good tractors(AC/Simplicitys). I did hear of a AC B 110 that was given to a wrecker friend of mine, that is siting in his bone yard. The next thing I read in the paper is the wrecker friend dies of a heart problems. Thank God thats not my Irish luck...

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goatfarmer
When I worked for Sears service in the early 80's,some of the tractors were sourced from Roper,some from AMF,and some from Murray.The Ropers were the best constructed.I don't know how to tell the difference,though.

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Chris727
Not all ropers were like Suburbans, though they did make the Suburbans beginning in 1966. I think some 80's roper units are fairly lightweight MTD-type junk. I have had a lot of Suburbans and have had it with them. Theres no easy access for service. The tecumseh engines have the potential to be a nightmare,and few new parts are available through sears. Some of the early 70's models such as the SS14, SS15, and HT14 had 14 and 15 hp Cast Iron briggs. If you're going to look for a Suburban, they're the best models.

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