Used Frontier RC2048
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Thread: Used Frontier RC2048

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    JustinHEMI's Avatar
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    Used Frontier RC2048

    Hello all,

    While waiting for my tractor, I had been searching for an RC2048, but was having a hard time finding one locally. The nearest one was a little used 1300 dollars, compared to my dealer quoted 1600 for new. Today, one appeared on Craigslist not far from me. He's asking 900 and says he bought it new in 2015 with slip cluch and chain guards. This seems like a good deal to me, but since I'm new to this, thought I would ask the experts here.

    I'm headed out first thing in the morning to check it out. Anything I should look out for? Is the price fair?

    Thanks!





    Last edited by JustinHEMI; 06-29-2018 at 09:11 PM.
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    1940 John Deere H with PTO, hand start.

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    I have one that I bought in 2016 that I haven’t used yet. It’s been sitting on wood blocks.


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    RetiredDoc's Avatar
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    Theres's one on ebay located in Florida with 20 hours use with a buy it now price of $699, or make offer.

    I have one I bought new, used maybe 20-30 hours just mowing pasture grass, and I'd be happy to get $700 cash for it. I paid $1200 for it from my local dealer. Has slip clutch and front rubber and rear metal guards rather than chains.

    So IMO the asking price of the one you are looking at is too high. You have room to deal.

    And make sure the gearbox is good. If it has failed, and the rest of the RC is pretty decent, and you have the inclination to replace the gearbox, offer half of whay you'd pay if the gearbox was good - maybe $300-400.
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    kylew's Avatar
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    It doesn't look too bad in the pictures but I do notice a couple small things.

    If you didn't know, the PTO shaft has a plastic cover over the shaft itself, with "bell" ends over the u-joints. These plastic guards are suppose to be retained so they don't rotate when the machine is running. The shaft will spin inside of them. This keeps body parts and clothing from being torn away if you were to make contact while it's running. I value my fingers and such, and I wouldn't run a spinning machine without its safety guards in place.

    That said, the chains for retaining the PTO shaft guard sleeve are disconnected. You can see the rears around the left rear upright support, not attached to the PTO guard sleeve. Can't even see the front one, so I'm guessing it's been removed entirely. My question is why? See this thread, along with the videos in it, that Kenny posted as to the dangers of a PTO and why it's important to have functional safety guards in place. https://www.greentractortalk.com/for...-bad-ugly.html With that in mind, I'm knocking some dollars off to have to fix that problem.

    Next, the plastic cover for the slip-clutch is the big cup-shaped cover bolted to the front of the gearbox, and you can see 1 access cover on it. It has 2, and they're 180° apart. So the other you can't see because it's now on the bottom and inaccessible. From what I understand from the manual, those access covers allow you to get in with wrenches to adjust/work on the slip-clutch (minor work). Mine is mounted with the access covers at 9 o'clock & 3 o'clock, so you can get in from both sides. So why is this one mounted at 12 o'clock & 6 o'clock? Someone's had it off. Why?

    Now...notice it looks like the top of the unit has grease stains all over it, especially where the gearbox mounts, and where the gearbox vent is (the little silver cap on top of the gearbox). Was it blowing gearbox oil? Could be an indication of a problem with the gearbox, and with the slip-clutch cover mounted 90°off makes me think something is up.

    Try to check the u-joints for sloppy-ness if you can. The coupler that attaches to the tractor's PTO shaft has a ring you pull to release the ball bearings, so it can slide forward enough to engage in the groove of the tractor's PTO shaft. I didn't know this at first, and mine was gummed up some, but WD-40/penetrating oil took care of that. Check the weld's aren't cracked/broken. If I have mine at mid to lower throttle, it can shake some. Runs smooth at higher RPMs though.

    See if you can look at the blades and deflector pan. Blades should pivot freely. Look for general damage, etc. The rear wheel should have a greasable axle. Don't remember about the spindle. Both should move freely. Check the level of the gearbox oil. It should drip out of the fill hole a little. See if you tell about it's condition. Does it need to be replaced? Are the gearbox seals leaking?

    FWIW...I recently picked up a 2015 RC2048 from my dealer he took in on trade, for $1000. I thought the price was fair for it. The paint was shiny and no chips. The belly pan didn't have any build up. No grease blowing out. U-joints were greased, etc. You could tell it wasn't used much and was near new condition so I snagged it. When it comes to craigslist, it seems many people are asking unreasonable top dollar for something that (in my mind) is only worth 1/2 to 3/4 of what they're asking. Just keep that in mind.

    Hope this helps and good luck. Maybe you can negotiate something.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kylew View Post
    It doesn't look too bad in the pictures but I do notice a couple small things.

    If you didn't know, the PTO shaft has a plastic cover over the shaft itself, with "bell" ends over the u-joints. These plastic guards are suppose to be retained so they don't rotate when the machine is running. The shaft will spin inside of them. This keeps body parts and clothing from being torn away if you were to make contact while it's running. I value my fingers and such, and I wouldn't run a spinning machine without its safety guards in place.

    That said, the chains for retaining the PTO shaft guard sleeve are disconnected. You can see the rears around the left rear upright support, not attached to the PTO guard sleeve. Can't even see the front one, so I'm guessing it's been removed entirely. My question is why? See this thread, along with the videos in it, that Kenny posted as to the dangers of a PTO and why it's important to have functional safety guards in place. https://www.greentractortalk.com/for...-bad-ugly.html With that in mind, I'm knocking some dollars off to have to fix that problem.

    Next, the plastic cover for the slip-clutch is the big cup-shaped cover bolted to the front of the gearbox, and you can see 1 access cover on it. It has 2, and they're 180° apart. So the other you can't see because it's now on the bottom and inaccessible. From what I understand from the manual, those access covers allow you to get in with wrenches to adjust/work on the slip-clutch (minor work). Mine is mounted with the access covers at 9 o'clock & 3 o'clock, so you can get in from both sides. So why is this one mounted at 12 o'clock & 6 o'clock? Someone's had it off. Why?

    Now...notice it looks like the top of the unit has grease stains all over it, especially where the gearbox mounts, and where the gearbox vent is (the little silver cap on top of the gearbox). Was it blowing gearbox oil? Could be an indication of a problem with the gearbox, and with the slip-clutch cover mounted 90°off makes me think something is up.

    Try to check the u-joints for sloppy-ness if you can. The coupler that attaches to the tractor's PTO shaft has a ring you pull to release the ball bearings, so it can slide forward enough to engage in the groove of the tractor's PTO shaft. I didn't know this at first, and mine was gummed up some, but WD-40/penetrating oil took care of that. Check the weld's aren't cracked/broken. If I have mine at mid to lower throttle, it can shake some. Runs smooth at higher RPMs though.

    See if you can look at the blades and deflector pan. Blades should pivot freely. Look for general damage, etc. The rear wheel should have a greasable axle. Don't remember about the spindle. Both should move freely. Check the level of the gearbox oil. It should drip out of the fill hole a little. See if you tell about it's condition. Does it need to be replaced? Are the gearbox seals leaking?

    FWIW...I recently picked up a 2015 RC2048 from my dealer he took in on trade, for $1000. I thought the price was fair for it. The paint was shiny and no chips. The belly pan didn't have any build up. No grease blowing out. U-joints were greased, etc. You could tell it wasn't used much and was near new condition so I snagged it. When it comes to craigslist, it seems many people are asking unreasonable top dollar for something that (in my mind) is only worth 1/2 to 3/4 of what they're asking. Just keep that in mind.

    Hope this helps and good luck. Maybe you can negotiate something.
    Thank you very much! I'm on my way to see it now, and this gives me some things to look for.
    wentonbrown and kylew like this.
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    1940 John Deere H with PTO, hand start.

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    Check the gearbox oil and level. Look for large dents / general condition of the deck and blades. If possible make sure nothing is wrapped around the main shaft underneath - that can be a really bad sign.
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    JustinHEMI's Avatar
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    Whelp my gut told me to walk away so I did. He got real coy when I asked about the obvious oil that has come out the breather and although it has one chain for the shaft guard, he said it never had another. I asked if he would take 800, he said no, then said he has to go because his baby was waking up.

    Since he didn't want to talk about the oil, and suddenly had to go, I just didn't feel good.

    On the positive note, scored another suitcase weight not far from him.
    Last edited by JustinHEMI; 06-30-2018 at 11:46 AM.
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    2019 2038R, dual rear vavles, power beyond, 220R loader, 57" HD bucket, iMatch, R3+ tires, JD premium LED light kit, wheel spacers, Artillian diverter, EA wicked root grapple, Heavy Hitch "flexible ballast" and bolt on toothbar, Ken's extended iMatch hook and loader grip, Titan forks, Woods BB60X rotary cutter, CRI stump bucket, Fit Rite hydraulics top link.

    1940 John Deere H with PTO, hand start.

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    kylew's Avatar
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    Well, now you know, and you probably did the smart thing by walking away. You know...actions like that from the seller typically means they're trying to hide something or at least hope it's not brought up. Good for you asking others before you dropped the cash. A repair could have gotten your investment over what a new would cost.

    As far as the front chain never being there. Don't buy that for a second. 99.999% horse hockey. And in case you're wondering....those shafts are 2 pieces that slip in & out of one another, so a single chain can't do both the front & back halves without making it a pain to remove so you can pull the front half off the back half. In his picture, that chain wasn't near longer enough to do both halves. Looks like it was barely long enough to do the back half.

    Surprised he didn't give you some bs about spilling a can of oil all over the deck.

    Good for you on scoring the suitcase weight
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    Just keep looking, I paid $700 for a RC2048 that was brand new from a guy on craigslist. It had the slip clutch and metal rear guard. The gentleman bought the tractor as a package (box blade, rotary cutter, trailer, etc) and didn't have a use for the rotary cutter. I searched craigslist for months and while I was searching on a Saturday morning he posted it and I was at his house within an hour picking it up!

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    Good for you! Always go with your gut! You will find one. I was lokking for a BB a few years ago and a guy posted it that morning and I was on the phone and in the truck to go get it. Got a great deal. Point is that one wasn't meant to be yours..

    Good luck in your search! Sounds like a few members might be willing to sell you theirs?
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