I started to type this yesterday however I got distracted by a few drinks and the JD website....
Rewind to yesterday evening around 7pm after sitting outside at a tequila restaurant/lounge, outside all to ourselves, under an umbrella, naturally three margaritas down for my wife an I.
Wife and I are discussing the load of logs (2 cords worth approx) sitting on the side of the house waiting to be cut along with the other logs (2-3 cords worth) around the perimeter of my brush line that I dropped and pushed off the grass. Realizing that cutting, splitting and transporting is different than what she remembers growing up at her parents place when he father had skid steer with a grapple along with 2 Kubota's with loaders and 3pt grapples. 5-10min into the conversation she confirms to herself that we either have to move all the logs closer to the location that we want to stack so it's a shorter walk out to the stack, or need to move the split chunks afterwards. She points out that moving the full size logs will tear up the grass and that a grapple "like dad's on the back" would make easier work than using a chain on the back of my x758. Also mentions that if we want to clear out some more of our 5acres for expanding the lawn, and a garden and a pool, and dragging timber that it's probably worth it. I point out that the grapple on a loader would be even nicer because then you can unstack the logs and cut them slightly elevated so the chunks can fall to the ground not requiring you to roll the logs by hand.
Then she starts firing off the questions, but the first and most important one is, "can a bigger tractor with a backhoe mow our lawn if we went bigger?" Mind you I'm trying to keep absolute composure and trying to prevent my smirk/ sh*t grin from appearing on my face . I explain to her how the x758 and one of the finest mowers deere makes and than the downside to a larger machine could risk the septic system if not buried deep enough and that in the spring when the lawn is soft i might sink a little more. She asks again if it can be done though and do others do it. I told her absolutely there's plenty of guys that do and have great results, with a flat lawn like ours it won't be bad either especially with no low hanging trees. It's at that point that I correct her because she continues to say a backhoe in place of "TLB" or "tractor with a back". I get the snarky you know what I mean.
Conversation goes onto can it mow easily, can we move logs easier, can you snowplow or snowblow with it, is it worth getting the backhoe, will it fit in the garage or do we use a carport to start, would you go up one size like mom's (1025R) or bigger, have you looked into bigger, if it's only double what the x758 costs us each month it's probably worth it...
- yes it can mow nearly as easy
- yes we can add a EA grapple on the loader & a 3pt one for grabbing and dragging,
- yes I can technically plow and likely re-use the CTA66" plow I have, plus I would rather go for a rear 3pt blower to keep the loader on for stacking
- the backhoe is $8k = (gets look on her face ) you can buy its up front and finance or later and pay 3/4 the price in cash. With all the 2-3' rocks in the lawn and when I dug two trenches for gutters it will probably pay for itself within the first 20hrs of use.
- yes it will fit in the garage (white lie not sure if it will with the backhoe on and definitely not with the ROPS up) if nothing else the shed i was going to build in the spring was going to be sized for a cabbed 3046R just in case
- no, we'd skip over the 1025R (like mom's) and go to a 2032R, 2038R or 3033R.
- yes dear, I looked into these about a year ago when we were preparing to buy this property and at the time it wasn't worth trading in the 2017 x758 because we owed more than it was worth despite have 30hrs on it. At this point it might be worth trading or selling privately. Keep the CTA 66" plow and sell the power flow triple bagger.
"Babe, go look at tractors and get back to me I think we can do it."
After leaving the restaurant we drove past our local dealer, I think she did it just to watch me break my neck as we drove by.
Needless to say after I finish doing payroll for all my guys this morning I will have to take a run to the JD dealer and start asking questions again. Last time I did this I was focusing on the 2038R and a few dealers suggested I look at the 3033R due to the stronger backhoe and lift capability. I think if we are in the right price range I'll have to have at least one machine if not two dropped off to see how it mows.
- mow 1-1.5 flat acres acres currently
- clay mix of soil so doesn't drain well with heavy pours
- remove snow from a 600' paved driveway and 10 parking spots at top
- woods are also flat-is and some wet due to wetlands
- mostly 6+ in trees in the woods, not much small brush so clearance isn't a huge factor
- drag trees and cut logs for wood, stack wood on pallets to lift onto a deck
- 7' garage door height (future shed will allow for more)
- gutter drainage need to prevent dumping at base of foundation, running power to a future gate, removing rocks from lawn