2018 JD 3032E
New 3-Series Owner here. Been mostly lurking on GTT, reading posts and learning what I can. I purchased a bone stock 2018 3032E with 121 hours, a FEL and bush-hog a few months ago. The tractor was purchased as a repo, which likely means it wasn't well maintained, but who knows? It appears to be in great shape, from what I can tell. I'm handy with autos, but never owned a diesel or a tractor. I've used this site to answer questions and fill in the knowledge gaps. I genuinely appreciate everyone's advice. Some lessons-learned thus far:
- Since it was a repo, it did not come with anything other than a title and a key (no manual, service records, etc). I purchased an Operators Manual and some spare keys. After reading it cover to cover, I made a plan and started a worksheet to keep track of recommended service intervals.
- First, I did a full service on all the fluids and filters (oil, transmission, fuel & air filters, front axle fluid, coolant and lubrication points). It looked like the factory filters were all still in place, so no previous service had been attempted. It was a great exercise and helped to familiarize me with the machine. I also learned that there are idiosyncrasies with these tractors. Just because the manual states a part number fits my tractor doesn't mean its gonna fit my tractor, particularly where the Oil and Fuel filters are concerned.
- The trans/hydraulic fluid that came out of the tractor had a greenish tinge to it, unlike the new oil which was clear and golden in color. Should I be worried?
- Now, I'm fixing some JD weaknesses and vulnerabilities to make this thing safe to operate, primarily since I live on top of a mountain and will rarely be on perfectly flat, level ground. It is amazing to me that JD sells these things as safe and ready to use when according to my research and limited time in the seat, they clearly are not. It is my opinion that this tractor is dangerously tippy as it comes from the factory. The improvements I've made thus far include:
- I swapped out the front axle dipstick with a vented one. Not sure why JD doesn't rectify this at the factory.
- Ordered 4" wheel spacers for the back wheels to widen the stance.
- Once the spacers are on, I will fill the front and rear tires with beet juice to lower the center of gravity and add about 500lbs of rear ballast.
- I will flip the front wheels, using the greater offset for a wider stance.
- I purchased a ballast box.
- That's roughly $1,400 just to make this thing safe for use.
- Oh, and I purchased an 18' trailer to haul my Green Machine around along with safety chains and tensioners. That was another $4,400 but sadly, just the start of the investment needed to make this tractor ready to serve its intended purpose.
- Implements - I intend to use this tractor to clear 8 wooded, rocky and mostly level acres on top of a ridge, for a home and a 1 acre garden and to maintain a long, sometimes steeply inclined gravel driveway. The garden will be a special challenge since I'll need to remove all of the rocks and debris from the soil before attempting to till and plant. Investments made thus far:
- Wicked 55 Grapple, $2k
- 3rd Function Kit, $1k
- Stump Bucket, $600
- Chain hook plate for the FEL bucket $175
- Pallet Forks, $700
- Heavy Duty Landscape Rake, $1k
- Box blade, $1k
- Bolt on tooth bar for loader bucket, $300
- iMatch Quick Hitch and bushings, $480
- Maintenance Fluids, filters, lubricants, Lube Shuttle grease gun, etc: $300
- Rear tow bar kit $156 (incredibly, this was an optional item with this tractor)
- Tiller ?? (yet to be purchased)
- Wait times for orders has been incredible, due to materials shortages. The grapple and landscape rake both have 3 month ship times.
- To sum it up, I had no idea what I was getting into. I know this sounds like a rant, but it isn't, its more a reflection of my experiences with the learning curve. So far, it has been a financial black hole before I even put a single implement to the ground. I hope this thing pans out and proves to be useful! And, I hope I don't kill myself with this amazing machine. Since owning it, I've put 5 hours on the tach, mostly just driving it around the neighborhood and practicing with the joystick. I'm stunned by how much torque is generated by a 31hp motor.
- I welcome any advice, tips, and tricks for a noob operator. I intend to voraciously read the posts on this forum, be a sponge, learn all I can, and apply it while I'm in the "operator station". I'm particularly interested in learning how to use the PTO. Thanks in advance for your help and guidance! This site has been quite a blessing.