Agri Vehicles Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: do I need a tractor?  (Read 12400 times)

embo

  • Joined May 2012
    • the meaden project
do I need a tractor?
« on: June 03, 2012, 07:20:27 pm »
Hello All,

Just after a bit of advice re machinery. Thus far, we've had a garden the size of a postage stamp but on Friday, we move to a four acre-ish plot.
The paddock (about 2 acres) has been sprayed, ploughed, harrowed, reseeded etc for the horses to move into later in the year. However, when the house has been rebuilt, the gardens are going to be about 2 acres. We're planning a manege (eventually) and an orchard (complete with chickens) with wild flowers for about 3/4 acre and a large kitchen garden. The rest will be laid to lawn. In theory, we'll need something that'll do the occasional topping and chain-harrowing of paddock, leveling of manege and cutting the lawns. I don't need billiard-table lawn finish, but I also don't want something that's going to take forever. Should we go down the sit-on mower, compact tractor or quad bike and implements route? The grounds are all completely level.
Any advice would be much appreciated, I don't think the old Flymo is going to cut it  :D

Thankies

Embo

HappyHippy

  • Guest
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2012, 07:43:44 am »
A compact tractor would probably be the most versitile, but you do get a whole load of attachments for quads - I think a sit-on mower would be a waste as it only does grass cutting  :-\
Good luck with the move and keep us all posted  :thumbsup:
Karen  :wave:

lachlanandmarcus

  • Joined Aug 2010
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2012, 08:05:15 am »
I would go for one of the little Kubota tractors if you can stretch to it. Forget sit on mower, a mower or topper on a wee tractor will take a tenth of the time, less billiard table but you will have a life and it will look nice and mown. Also the little tractors if you get the right tyres wont muck up the grass or the arena and will turn nice and tightly to get into the corners.
In theory quad bike good BUT you would then need any implements to be self powered which are many times more expensive and fewer around seocndhand, and by the time you have bought quad and one implement you could have had the far more flexible mini tractor and quads are also prime for theft and expensive to insure because of it. And the tractor can run on red diesel if you get yourself a little tank which means cheaper running and not having to keep going to the service station with a can in hand.

Fowgill Farm

  • Joined Feb 2009
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2012, 12:27:38 pm »
Would second getting a Kubota we have a 1610 (not made anymore think its either 1410 or 1710 now but check their website) We could not manage without it, Northern Tool catalogue has a mind boggling array of attachments suitable for it (just bought an ATV sprayer which OH has adapted to go on back of Kubster)but i also have two cutters (rough & smooth), rear forks, grass collector, spreader, rotivator (Kuhn), sub soiler and a little ATV trailer. Its very girl friendly from my point of view and very good on diesel.
Ours was bought new (my present for finding farm!) and has hardly lost any value (a dealer at Yorks Show told us he would give us what we paid for it!) as they are hard to find second hand as they just go forever. We follow the handbook for servicing and filters can be picked up at your local tractor merchant or via internet.
HTh
mandy  :pig:

Small Farmer

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • Bedfordshire
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2012, 07:28:46 pm »
You're in compromise territory unless you get lots of kit because nothing will quite do all the things you're going to want to do.  We have horses, sheep, chickens and a half acre orchard and have been doing it long enough to have made a few equipment errors. 


I'd forget quad bikes for the reasons that lachlanandmarcus outlined.  You don't anyway have lumpy ground or big distances.


A ride-on mower or lawn tractor will collect the arisings which for the size of gardens you're talking about will be substantial.   Leaving the cuttings on the ground looks crap on a lawn and is messy underfoot on paths in the orchard.   A mower will also fit under the branches of trees in the orchard but most will do no more than that.  If you have something like an expensive John Deere (I have an X534) though you then have a heavy duty machines that will attack metre high nettles with ease.  It will tow a 6' grass harrow or a small trailer if you remove the grass deck, but turf tyres limit adhesion (and damage).  It is completely workable to use for topping a horse paddock but can't leave more than about 4" of uncut grass.  And obviously lacks PTO and hydraulics.


Neither a topper nor a finishing mower will collect grass.  My Fleming topper is no good as a mower because it stacks the cuttings into a line which need dispersing before it rots and kills the grass.  But a tractor can take all the attachments like pallet forks, a loader and tipping trailer that makes general horse stuff easier.


Horses for courses, and like everything else to do with horses, expensive.





Being certain just means you haven't got all the facts

bazzais

  • Joined Jan 2010
    • Allt Y Coed Farm and Campsite
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #5 on: June 10, 2012, 08:57:13 am »
Everybody needs a tractor  :innocent:

Small Farmer

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • Bedfordshire
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2012, 06:42:59 pm »
Being certain just means you haven't got all the facts

jaykay

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Cumbria/N Yorks border
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2012, 06:53:08 pm »
It's a question along the lines of 'do I need a pair of red shoes' I think  ;)

deepinthewoods

  • Guest
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2012, 07:10:57 pm »
i so sorry but i couldnt help myself.
 
Kate Bush The Red Shoes

jaykay

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Cumbria/N Yorks border
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2012, 07:37:36 pm »
Red shoes do all that and more  ;)

deepinthewoods

  • Guest
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2012, 07:59:33 pm »
god,dont i know it. my one and only weakness..... :D

jaykay

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Cumbria/N Yorks border
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2012, 08:00:54 pm »
 ;D

Maggie

  • Joined Jul 2011
  • Umberleigh, Devon
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2012, 10:14:15 am »
Husband is looking at the Chinese made Landlegend, they do a 25hp and 40hp one which he seems to think will suit our budget and needs here on 60 acres of not very flat land.  Anyone else have any experience of these?  I did see a very favourable review of it on the River Cottage forum, from a guy who previously owned a Brown for 24 years....  so that's one positive one so far!

Small Farmer

  • Joined Jan 2012
  • Bedfordshire
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #13 on: June 16, 2012, 10:41:33 pm »
If there were a simple answer to this question then the Chinese and Japanese tractor prices would be a great deal closer.


With the Japanese tractor - Kubota, Iseki et al - you get not only a known reliable product but an established parts network across the country.  You pay a lot extra for the brand name but they hold their values secondhand. It's just as well they're reliable because spares prices are also very high.  But the dealerships stock parts for models that haven't been made for a long time.


The Chinese tractor is hard to assess.   There are some huge Chinese tractor factories but their products are an unknown quantity, not the least because different levels of specification and quality are easily made by such a factory.  I doubt that the UK is regarded as a significant market for them - export numbers must be tiny compared with, say, most African countries.  And agriculture is still substantially done by manual labour in China, so there isn't yet a strong domestic market base to validate the products.


Thus you are in the hands of the importer, his financial strength and his relationship with the manufacturer.  You need to be sure that the bits you may need in five years will still be stocked.


This isn't as easy as the choice between VW and Skoda where most of the same technology and all of the financial strength can be accessed for a cheaper price.   It's more like trying to get the new car warranty on a year-old Saab honoured. 



Being certain just means you haven't got all the facts

Maggie

  • Joined Jul 2011
  • Umberleigh, Devon
Re: do I need a tractor?
« Reply #14 on: June 21, 2012, 09:10:50 am »
Thanks for that Small Farmer.  You're right of course, it's going to be hard to assess but I feel that, knowing my dear husband, it's a done deal already and we will probably come back from the dealer today fully signed up to a Landlegend.  All that remains is for me to let you all know, in good faith, just how good or otherwise it turns out to be. 

Cheers.
Maggie

 

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