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Right Model for my needs

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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I never thought I would live on such a beautiful 15-20 acre parcel, but the opportunity just fell into my lap! With that said, I am furiously looking at tractors and evaluating against my goals. I hope the members here can help shed some light and make some useful points for a specific tractor and HP level.

I expect to be doing a ton of grapple work moving trees and brush as well as a fair amount of loader work. I would also like to prep the site for a barn and driveway. I'm thinking a box blade and some patience would go a long way with these tasks. I'll need to scrape at least 6 inches of soil off the sites to prepare.

The soil is excellent. I've been working with the property owner to install electric services and there is nearly no rock down to 45" or so.

Based on my research, I'm 95% positive a 3 series is the right place to start. The budget won't allow a 4 series (or much of a 3 series either), but I figure it will pay for itself eventually.

I looked hard at the 3D models for a more budget friendly unit, but really like the additional features and capacity of the 3R models. I've come to terms with not using the tractor for mowing - at least not in the next 5-10 years. I have a great Exmark zero turn which takes about 2 1/2 hours to mow the area now. Everyone I've talked to indicates my mowing time would increase 50-75%. Don't have time for that!!

I would appreciate some insight from the wisdom of the members here!

TIA
 

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Do you have anything planned that requires a specific PTO HP? Rotary cutters? hay equiptment? Tillers?
Any of those will pull a box blade and run a grapple.

The best thing is to figure out the work that needs to be done, then size the tractor to that.

Definitely go with one of the R models though (y)
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Haven't seen much use for the PTO yet. Maybe an offset flair mower for cutting around the pond, but that is years off. Someone dug a trench thru the dam and drained it. There is a bunch of work needed to restore the pond. Good point Jimmy - Thanks!!
 

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For grading and loader work...I would recommend a hystat model...a loader with 3rd fuction...full ballasting...4wd is a must...good seat suspension....hp shouldn't be a issue with any model you listed...hp is more of a pto concern such as mowing
 

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3038E, AV20H Root Grapple, 370B Backhoe, BB50 Box Blade, RB20 Rear Blade, Woods BB72X Rotary Cutter
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3038E was the right blend of economy, capability, and portability for me on 35 acres. The higher PTO HP allowed for more options in that category and the lower price allowed for fun and practical stuff like a grapple, backhoe and box blade. Would I buy it again? Definitely! Unless I found an extra $10k lying around...then I'd get a R model.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
For grading and loader work...I would recommend a hystat model...a loader with 3rd fuction...full ballasting...4wd is a must...good seat suspension....hp shouldn't be a issue with any model you listed...hp is more of a pto concern such as mowing
I'm an old school manual transmission guy, but I agree, the hydro would be preferred for the loader work. I think clutching would slow things down and driving into piles of dirt and rock would seem to be rough on the clutch and my leg.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The other issue I am running into is actually seeing a model in person. I think it might be time for a test drive, but nobody has any inventory.
 

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3039R or 3046R would absolutely be my pics from the list given.
Might even recommend looking at a 4044R or 4044M or 4052s .
The 4M and 4R is substantially more capable. Load lift capacity difference is almost double. Stability is greatly improved with the 4 series as well. I have seen low hour like new used 4044s for less a then new 3046Rs.
 

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I am wondering where someone got that increase of 50-75% in mowing time using the tractor. I mow with a Befco 110 inch rear finish mower on my 4066R and there is no zero turn that can stay in sight of me when mowing. That mower would also work on a 3046R as it takes so little HP when mowing the yard that it never kicks in the turbo. I mow as fast as I can go in B range which is around 9 MPH. Compared with the 1025R I had, I mow twice as fast and the cut is twice as wide. You can do the math on that. The place south of me has the same acreage I do. Both them spend nearly a whole day mowing on the weekend (they both work) with their two zero turn mowers, whereas I am done in not much more than the time it takes them to get ready to mow. The only downside is that a zero turn can get into places I cannot. A chain saw on those lower limbs fixes that.

Dave
 
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Everything depends on where you live, what you do and how hot it is. In south AL we finally broke down and got a 4066R with a cab. It is saving our lives and we only mow around 15 acres. We also have the fork lifts that are invaluable. Wish we had gotten the grapple at the same time. The hydrostat tractors hold their value and are desirable and much more fun to operate.
 

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If you have been following this forum, you will note that there are many who are upgrading tractors, sometimes more than once. But rarely do you read where someone is downgrading tractors. As soon as you get a smaller tractor, you will already be wishing you had gotten a bigger tractor. Feel the pain once and go for it. Nothing less than a 3046R cab, but preferably a 4 series cab. The difference between a 3 series and a 4 series is amazing. And the 4 series has a cast iron rear end that can take spacers. I recently put 5 1/2 inch spacers on the rear of my 4066R. There are a lot of 4 series tractors coming off lease every year and with the shortage of new tractors, that might the best place to shop, while saving some money. BTW, I always mow in the hottest part of the day, in that A/C cab of course. I have never had to clean out the underside of the mower in 6 years due to it being the driest then.

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
If you have been following this forum, you will note that there are many who are upgrading tractors, sometimes more than once. But rarely do you read where someone is downgrading tractors. As soon as you get a smaller tractor, you will already be wishing you had gotten a bigger tractor. Feel the pain once and go for it. Nothing less than a 3046R cab, but preferably a 4 series cab. The difference between a 3 series and a 4 series is amazing. And the 4 series has a cast iron rear end that can take spacers. I recently put 5 1/2 inch spacers on the rear of my 4066R. There are a lot of 4 series tractors coming off lease every year and with the shortage of new tractors, that might the best place to shop, while saving some money. BTW, I always mow in the hottest part of the day, in that A/C cab of course. I have never had to clean out the underside of the mower in 6 years due to it being the driest then.

Dave
I looked at a 3046R today and took a magnet. It sticks to the axle housing, so I assume it is cast iron.
 

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I looked at a 3046R today and took a magnet. It sticks to the axle housing, so I assume it is cast iron.
That is contrary to all info that is available. The aluminum is the reason JD does not recommend spacers. Maybe the magnet found a bolt?

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
That is contrary to all info that is available. The aluminum is the reason JD does not recommend spacers. Maybe the magnet found a bolt?

Dave
I tried a couple of spots on the housing. Wasn't a strong magnetic hold, but it didn't fall off. I even thought of the bolt being a potential point of attraction and moved the magnet. Thing's that make you go Hmmmm?
 

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I tried a couple of spots on the housing. Wasn't a strong magnetic hold, but it didn't fall off. I even thought of the bolt being a potential point of attraction and moved the magnet. Thing's that make you go Hmmmm?
Maybe the steel axle inside the aluminum housing was attracting it????

Dave
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Was it highly attractive or was the magnet barely hanging on?
The magnet itself has a little weight to it. It didn't fall to the ground, but didn't grab like it does on another surface. I wouldn't expect the metallic composition of the rear axel to be such a point of discussion!!
 
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