I usually post over on the 1025R forum, so forgive me for just dropping in with a drama. I had a problem with my LA135SE on the weekend, and I'm hoping you guys have some views on the way to go about sorting it out. I'm chewing over whether or not to have it repaired, or pull the trigger on an X series to permanently address the issue.
I bought the mower new 7 or so years ago and it's got 160 hours on it. I mow 5 acres with it, some of which is relatively level, other parts are sloping (it's not a goat track but I have to take it slow going side ways with the 1025r on some sections). I also have to drive it down a hill to mow an area about 2 acres, and then up the hill again, and that is fairly steep and about a 300m climb.
That said, I do all of this quite quickly as I use a Swisher T44 as well when I mow, so I have a huge cut and bowl the job over quite fast. My original mower was an old manual JD LT 150, and it struggled a bit with the longer grass and pulling of the T44, so I swapped up for the 22hp LA135.
Over the last few months it's become slower pulling the T44 up the slopes. I know this means the transmission could be on the way out, but yesterday I mowed again on a 34c day, and it stopped climbing the slope. There was an obvious hot chemical odour coming out of the rear of the mower. I disconnected the T44, let the LA135 cool down and then I was able to finish he job with it by itself, and it went up and down the slopes no problem. I finished the other parts of the yard just dragging the T44 behind my 1025R.
Anyway, JD equipment in Australia is quite expensive. I'm contemplating having the transmission looked at and maybe trying for the heavier oil option if there's no other damage, but if it comes to pass that it's busted, I'd probably look to trade it in on a X series.
Now my question is given my particular use, I'll need a transmission that can pull the Swisher no problems, the 10p steel yard cart etc, and do it comfortably. I was looking at the X590 (which looks to be about $14,000 in Australia). The alternative is possibly drop $2k on a new transmission, only to be possibly lumped with the same issue again. I thought about the mid-mount mower for the tractor, but I need to go between trees etc and it won't fit.
It's a shame, as the motor on the LA135 is great. The deck is useless and I can never get it to cut straight, but it could chew through the long grass effortlessly. I often lament giving away my LT150 as it cut great, towed anything and never gave me any trouble, apart from struggling in the thick grass. Live and learn I suppose.
I'd appreciate any views about the X590, or perhaps another X series that could be the way to go. The X300 series go for around the $7-11k mark, and if I'm going to drop that kind of money, it'll be a one shot deal so I can't screw it up.
Thanks in advance.