I plan to purchase a 3 point hitch sprayer for my 1025R in the next couple of weeks. I would like to know the experience of Forum members with the 40 gallon Fimco that TSC sells.
I have about 1.5 acres of lawn, so I need to be able to navigate around trees and buildings on fairly gentle terrain. I also have a 4.5 acre hay field that is gently sloping but has a much rougher terrain. I will need to spray broadleaf herbicide 2 or 3 times a year, and of course, I would clean any sprayer thoroughly after each use and add RV antifreeze to it in the winter,
I have seen posts about the fimco tank leaking, but I'm not sure how the tank would spring a leak. It looks like it is held on by a strap that wraps around the tank and bolts to the frame, so this shouldn't be a problem area. It also looks like there are a couple of bolts that go into inserts in the bottom of the tank, but these appear to be more for positioning than for anchoring the tank. Unless one over-tightened them, or didn't tighten the straps down enough, enabling the tank to shift around, then the bolts on the bottom shouldn't be a problem.
So, I am wondering - have these sprayers been holding up, or have folks been running into leaks or other problems such as failed motors? I am also wondering if it could stand up to the harsher terrain in the hay field. Have the negative online reviews been from folks that didn't use "best practices" when assembling or using them?
I like the Fimco because the price is right, and parts are readily available, even on a Sunday afternoon, but what kind of track record does it have recently, and does it seem like a suitable match for my purposes? I don't mind paying the premium for the JD unit, but only if the more economical Fimco unit isn't a good fit.
Update - I called Fimco, specifically to ask about the bolts that go through the bottom of the frame and into the tank. Before I got to the question, the rep asked what I intended to use it for. As soon as I mentioned the 4.5 acre hay field, he said (without hesitation) that the unit is not suitable because the tank will fail where the bottom bolts go into it! He indicated that this unit is designed for light duty/residential lawn use, and that it won't hold up to the rigors of agricultural use.
It leaves me wondering - they obviously know about this weak point. Why wouldn't they modify the design slightly by beefing up the hold down straps and eliminating the bolts that go into the tank? That failure point must manifest in residential applications too. I suspect that many "residential users" are just as hard, and maybe even harder on their equipment than the small time/hobby farmers.