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Discussion Starter #1
Try this:

Visual
Seat & seat support condition
Signs of welding or mismatched parts
Seals- rear axle, front axle, pto
Oil or fuel on engine
Engine and hyd oil full
Battery and connections
Air inlet tube- no cracks or holes
Air filter intact not too dirty or torn
Water pump weep hole
Radiator clean, fluid dark green, no white scum
No moisture at bottom of radiator
Fan belt tight, good shape
Name brand filters
Engine model number
Steering linkage slop
Sheet metal damage
Check for loose or missing hardware
Check field lights and warning lamps operation
Ask seller about any Liens on machine

START-UP
Feel crankcase for cold engine
Turn key and check lights and gauges
Start easy, indicator lights go off, oil pressure comes up
Any smoke stops after warm up
Exhaust leaks
Check hour meter & tachometer operation
Check alternator output
Check 3pt and pto
Test all gears
Try to get clutch to slip
Check both brakes
Check 4wd(if applicable)
Check crankcase ventilation tube for smoke

POST DRIVE
Check water temp
Look for new leaks
Remove oil fill cap and look for excessive blow-by
 
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