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    Firewood Bandit's Avatar
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    Safety and 4WD

    I constantly see threads regarding those struggling with traction issues whether it be in snow or steep slopes. I have had a few garden tractors and the small ones truly struggled with the slopes I have. After tipping one over and another twice I decided life is more precious than that and went to large ones with 4WD and have never come close since then many years ago. BTW, the "whirling blades of death" do not stop instantly while you are turning over no matter what kind of seat switch there is.

    Often many think the issue is going UP slopes when a more serious condition is going DOWN slopes as when it get very dry or wet a conventional rear end will skid one wheel and free wheel the other. At that point you had better point the nose in direction gravity is taking you and hold on for the out of control ride. Granted this is a thrill but a fairly hazardous one at that.

    The mechanical front wheel drive, MFWD work excellent but will tear up grass when turning short while going downhill with the outside tire. I have just discovered that the hydro 4WD of the 7xx series is just 2nd to none. Both will easily back up the steepest slopes without spinning a tire.

    The whole point of this is to emphasize the inherent risk of small machines on steep slopes.
    glc, DRobinson, ChrisR and 9 others like this.
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    Firewood Bandit's Avatar
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    Example of my hills. This doesn't quite show how steep this is.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DSC00074.JPG DSC00080.JPG
    glc, etcallhome, DRobinson and 9 others like this.
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    Jred 2159 ported
    Echo CS 355T, & pole saw
    F250 Super Duty CC 8' box and 10,000# 18' trailer

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    While you make some good points I would suggest looking at the big picture and answer the question why are you mowing an inherently steep/dangerous slopes in the first place?
    '06 JD 2720, FEL, Flail Mower.

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    Firewood Bandit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by klunker View Post
    While you make some good points I would suggest looking at the big picture and answer the question why are you mowing an inherently steep/dangerous slopes in the first place?
    My yard is 3.8 acres and 3 acres is on the slope. It is not dangerous with the proper equipment. If you have an entry level MTD on this slope it would be quite a handful. My yard is what I have to deal with and I think I've made pretty good use of it.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails DSC00053.JPG DSC00056.JPG DSC00048.JPG DSC00062.JPG DSC00064.JPG

    DSC00065.JPG DSC00066.JPG DSC00067.JPG
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    I agree with everything you said.

    I have a couple steep sections on my property. Iíve got a pretty good handle on it since Iíve been mowing it for 22 years now with various machines.

    I now mow it all with my 2520.

    I started out with a 214 when we first bought the place - all I could afford at the time. Then to a 332 which was a big help with the added weight - but still not 4WD.

    Then mowed with a 757 commercial zero turn. Had to quickly learn that I had to crab along the side hills rather than going up and down. Donít ask me how I learned that....

    On the one hill that I have I keep the 2520 it in 4WD when going straight up and down but take it out at the bottom where it levels off to make my turn. That way I donít tear up the turn turning with the front end pointing down. At the top I leave it in as the front wheels donít have much weight on them at that point and donít tear much. Really...itís not hard to flip a lever to take it in and out of 4WD.

    I can see how the x7xx with the full time AWD would be the perfect solution. That is what I will get if I ever get a dedicated mowing machine. In the meantime I use what I have and am thankful I have a 4WD mowing machine.
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    Wanted to add - what a beautiful place you have! Thanks for sharing the pics.
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    I agree with the OP that small machines are not good for slopes. I used to mow the steepest parts of my property with an old toro wheel horse. I feel a good bit better about them with my 2 series. If I use 4x4, I have to take it out to turn. This is especially important for me on the bottom of the hill because Iím on pavement. I go straight up and down the hill.

    The OP has a beautiful property and I wouldnít hesitate to mow it with that machine.
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    Hills and rolling terrain are just a fact of life in many parts of the country. Hills add danger, no doubt. But they also add beauty to many properties, such as Firewood Bandit's. Always approach hills with respect and you will be much better off than taking hills and slopes for granted, because eventually, one of them will bite you.

    Mowing on hills and slopes safely requires the operator to pay attention to what they are doing and to always be thinking ahead. While much of it is common sense (which seems to be in short supply at times among certain people.....) you want to pay attention to such things as wet grass, even from the dew and also be aware of wet leaves, etc. Even ground which is clear of any snow, ice or leaves, but is frozen, is very slick because of the ground's hardness and the moisture in the ground which permits it to freeze in such climates.

    Often, when someone new is considering which new machine to purchase and they are debating between a X7XX and a 1025r, the one critical question or input which is often overlooked is "What is the properties terrain which you are going to be mowing"? No question, the MFWD system of the X7x4, x7x8 with a MMM would be a superior machine for mowing Fire Bandit's Property. The hill stability is not requiring any input from the machine operator, which for a new operator is even more important.

    Many have wondered if the x7xx machines are going to continue to be built with the rapid growth of the SCUT and CUT market, especially when considering the price point for each machine. For MMM mowing on hilly and varying terrain, the x7x4 machines are a superior solution because of the MFWD system and the way it functions. Not sure? Try mowing with a x7x4 machine and a SCUT or CUT and if the terrain is adequately challenging, you will see first hand the tremendous advantage of the MFWD for this use.

    These are advantages to the MFWD system where you don't have to make a decision to manually engage or disengage the 4wd system. The different machines and the different systems have distinct advantages. For mowing hills and slopes with a MMM machine, the MFWD is the best system John Deere offers........and likely the best in the industry.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firewood Bandit View Post
    I constantly see threads regarding those struggling with traction issues whether it be in snow or steep slopes. I have had a few garden tractors and the small ones truly struggled with the slopes I have. After tipping one over and another twice I decided life is more precious than that and went to large ones with 4WD and have never come close since then many years ago. BTW, the "whirling blades of death" do not stop instantly while you are turning over no matter what kind of seat switch there is.

    Often many think the issue is going UP slopes when a more serious condition is going DOWN slopes as when it get very dry or wet a conventional rear end will skid one wheel and free wheel the other. At that point you had better point the nose in direction gravity is taking you and hold on for the out of control ride. Granted this is a thrill but a fairly hazardous one at that.

    The mechanical front wheel drive, MFWD work excellent but will tear up grass when turning short while going downhill with the outside tire. I have just discovered that the hydro 4WD of the 7xx series is just 2nd to none. Both will easily back up the steepest slopes without spinning a tire.

    The whole point of this is to emphasize the inherent risk of small machines on steep slopes.
    Why dont you really be safe and get a 40K Ventrac-- much better on hills than your X758,( not even close) and much safer. 4WD tractors are great- but they are expensive- so pretty silly to say why doesnt everyone get 4wd. Why doesnt everyone get a GT instead of a LT? People do the best they can given their resources and needs, some people have small section of yard( perhaps a ditch) they have problems with- should they go out and buy a 15K tractor, when they might only need 4WD a few times a year? Or maybe a better option is to invest a few hundred bucks in HDAPS. Point is everyone's situation is different
    jdforever and Oscar Leroy like this.
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    Firewood Bandit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SulleyBear View Post
    Hills and rolling terrain are just a fact of life in many parts of the country. Hills add danger, no doubt. But they also add beauty to many properties, such as Firewood Bandit's. Always approach hills with respect and you will be much better off than taking hills and slopes for granted, because eventually, one of them will bite you.

    Mowing on hills and slopes safely requires the operator to pay attention to what they are doing and to always be thinking ahead. While much of it is common sense (which seems to be in short supply at times among certain people.....) you want to pay attention to such things as wet grass, even from the dew and also be aware of wet leaves, etc. Even ground which is clear of any snow, ice or leaves, but is frozen, is very slick because of the ground's hardness and the moisture in the ground which permits it to freeze in such climates.

    Often, when someone new is considering which new machine to purchase and they are debating between a X7XX and a 1025r, the one critical question or input which is often overlooked is "What is the properties terrain which you are going to be mowing"? No question, the MFWD system of the X7x4, x7x8 with a MMM would be a superior machine for mowing Fire Bandit's Property. The hill stability is not requiring any input from the machine operator, which for a new operator is even more important.

    Many have wondered if the x7xx machines are going to continue to be built with the rapid growth of the SCUT and CUT market, especially when considering the price point for each machine. For MMM mowing on hilly and varying terrain, the x7x4 machines are a superior solution because of the MFWD system and the way it functions. Not sure? Try mowing with a x7x4 machine and a SCUT or CUT and if the terrain is adequately challenging, you will see first hand the tremendous advantage of the MFWD for this use.

    These are advantages to the MFWD system where you don't have to make a decision to manually engage or disengage the 4wd system. The different machines and the different systems have distinct advantages. For mowing hills and slopes with a MMM machine, the MFWD is the best system John Deere offers........and likely the best in the industry.

    Can't agree more regarding being aware of the conditions at all times. The bigger machines, 2305 and 758 will easily mow sideways where smaller machines could only be straight up and down. But I have even had the 2305 slide downhill in 2WD when the grass gets extremely dry. Prior times before the dry weather it never happened. As you said, "Be aware of your conditions".
    JD 2305
    2018 JD X758
    Simplicity Conquest W/turbo bagger
    Iron & Oak commercial splitter W/ hydro 4 way and log lift
    Husqvarna 346 XP ported x2, 357XP x 2, 562XPG, 372XPG, 288XP ported, 395XP NIB,
    Jred 2159 ported
    Echo CS 355T, & pole saw
    F250 Super Duty CC 8' box and 10,000# 18' trailer

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