Review By : barnstone on Jul 11 2007 12:00AM
Price Paid : $28,251.00
Years of Use : New Owner (0-1 Year)
Implements : 300cx loader and tooth bar, 60"tiller, 72" finish mower (3pt. hitch) post hole digger w/ 9" auger
Purchased From : cazenovia equipment NY
Strengths My very first tractor, and I was able to operate everything with a quick review of the manual. I quickly tilled three large gardens, moved the compost pile then began digging our large pond all in the same afternoon. I've so far put over seventy hours on it. (I performed the 50 hr maint. myself with excellent help from the owner's manual. I also checked out the other items on the schedule and they all look pretty easy) The pond site is composed of 2' of topsoil over 8' of clay. The 300cx loader with the tooth bar bolted on made easy work of the clay turning a 2 month-long job into a week's work. I am able to scoop out ditches and move ALOT of dirt in a short time. The 60" tiller makes for a decent ballast for the loader work so long as I'm slow and easy, but an actual ballast box would be much better combined with loaded tires. Mowing with this unit is easy, though I have a few high spots in the lawn that are being shaved down quite nicely. The four wheel drive and locking rear axle are invaluable for backing up hills and for digging. I would have loved to have also gotten a backhoe, but I've found that I've been able to do just about everything I wanted to do with just the loader and the teeth. When ever I can't get the bucket down into the earth to dig, the rototiller loosens it up first providing an easy point of entry. I appreciate the ease with which the loader bucket comes off and on. It's nice to get it out of the way for mowing around trees and close quartered obstacles. This brings to mind the excellent turning radius. I haven't tried the post hole digger yet but expect to this fall.
Weaknesses The storage compartment on the left fender is a great spot to keep a small hammer and punch etc. for dealing with the 3pt. hitch change from one implement to another, but it could have been built out of sturdier material and made a bit larger. I'm afraid it'll be the first thing that breaks. Oh, and Drinks in the black plastic cupholder tend to warm quickly in the summer sun (no kidding). The knob on the joystick could have been made with ergonomics in mind, it will aggravate any carpal tunnel you've got after four or five hours use. It would be nice if the easy hitch for the 3 pt. hitch were included with the tractor, but at least it's not expensive. I am still not as efficiant with implement changes as I'd like to be (I'm cursed with uneven ground for implement storage). Although the tooth bar was thrown in as part of the deal, I would mention that before you use it, you get another couple of nuts to cover up the exposed bolt threads as these would be easily damaged by anything you pick up with the loader thus rendering the teeth a permanant attachment(the threads extend beyond the supplied nuts and into the loader bucket) Even better would be to get a second bucket, but $650 compared to $1 and 15 minutes is not really a difficult desicion.
Overall This seems to be a tough tractor. Being a first time tractor owner, I am of course impressed by the work I'm getting done without the shovel and wheelbarrow, but I have a feeling that had I bought a lesser tractor I would have either been dissapointed or broken it in half by now. I've done alot of heavy work in a short time and am only limited by my own endurace. I'm 6'2" and find the seat very comfortable and all the levers and petal very conveniant. I put a wad down and financed the rest through JD at 0% for three years. The Ultra Guard Physical Damage Insurance was added into the payments - 3 yrs of coverage for $165. It covers everything; flood, tip-overs, lightning, fire, earthquakes, vandalism, hail, you name it. After purchacing the tractor , post hole digger and tiller (the tooth bar was thrown-in) I quickly went back (before the paperwork was sent out to JD) for the mower and it was added onto the financing as well. I've had a great experience so far with both the tractor and the dealer. Cazenovia Equipment has bent over backward to make me happy. I even got free hats and a coupon for free oil and a filter.
Parts : 9 Performance : 9
Ease of Use : 9 Financing : 9
Reliability : 9 Overall : 9