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Old 09-28-2004, 11:05 PM
Smalltimer1's Avatar
Smalltimer1 Smalltimer1 is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Raleigh, NC area
Posts: 1,243
The first years

Well as most of you know, I'm 18 years old, and in college. I've been doing small jobs (hence my handle--smalltimer) since I was 12 years old.

I guess my humble beginnings would go back to when I was 5 years old. I was at my grandfather's house, watching him mow and trim. I asked him if he would teach me how to drive the mower. He did, and I would drive for hours on end on that old Craftsman 10/36 in 1st gear, thought I was king of the yard. Then he gradually he showed me how to mow with it, and then how to drive it in higher gears and mow. I guess I was about 7 when I mastered that Craftsman tractor. He then bought a new one, and I ran that one then too. Then my father showed me how to use our old '77 Montgomery Ward 11/38, and I was unstoppable in our yard with it. Finally, my other grandfather got me on his John Deere 180, and I mowed 5 acres with it, I guess I was 9 years old then. I just kept mowing the yard at home and at pop's and when I was 12, that old Montgomery Ward died.

We bought a Honda HT-3810 then, I used it for a year, then the starter died, cost $500 to replace, so then we bought a brand new John Deere GT-235 and sold the Honda when I was 14. I used that at home for about 2 years, then my next door neighbor went blind. So I began mowing his yard, and he'd give me $100 for every 3 times I'd mow it.

Then I got into the repair aspect. I resurrected his old walk behind blower that had sat for 8 years. Then people started giving me their old or dead equipment. I brought back a John Deere 83G trimmer from the dead and used it for about 6 months before it was gone for good. Then I picked up a couple of other neighbors' yards and did them over summer breaks.

Then I started getting more and more repair stuff as well. Finally when I turned 16, I got my driver's license and I had saved up enough from mowing and repairing to pay for a good chunk of my F-250 and my folks picked up the rest. Then I was able to expand my area some. I got a couple other yards and did them. Finally, during the summer between Junior and Senior year in HS, ('03), I hit a gold mine. I went to the dump, and found about 15 Murray and MTD pushmowers about to receive the ultimate fate , I pulled them out, and made 3 trips in my pickup to save them all. One by one, I examined them, and there was not much wrong with any of them, and gradually I changed plugs in them, or cleaned the carbs out, put fresh gas in them, and one by one, I got them running, and sold them for $20 a piece.

Then about a week later, I went to the other local dump, and found 3 more, and 2 engines. Put the 2 engines in 2 decks I had, got them going, sold them for $15 a piece, and then 2 of the 3 complete ones I was able to get running, the last one I stripped parts from.

Then I got a Simplicity 4211 and I fixed it up, used it for about 10 months, then sold it. Then I took the money and 2 months later, bought a 1969 John Deere 140 Garden Tractor. I'm planning to restore it. I got it running about 3 weeks after I got it. Then I had to replace the axle seal and it's still on blocks right now, because I've been so busy. Anyway, ever since I've been in college, I ain't had much time to do much yard work or repair stuff.

Hope I wasn't too long winded.

2004 Ford F-250 XL RC/LB 4x2 Power Stroke Diesel
2010 John Deere Z710A 48" cut
1999 John Deere GT-235/54" deck
1985 John Deere 212 w/38" deck
1983 John Deere 420 w/54" hydraulic front blade
1974 John Deere 140, 54" hydraulic blade, 3pt. hitch, tandem disc, plow, 48" deck
1971 John Deere 112, 38" deck, all original, down for engine rebuild.
1967 IH Cub Cadet 124 w/creeper box, disc, plow
1947 Economy/Power King Tractor S/N 590, fully restored.

Certified John Deere Technician
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Old 09-28-2004, 11:56 PM
Wreak's Avatar
Wreak Wreak is offline
LawnSite Member
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Brandon, FL
Posts: 90
That's awesome. You could either make a country and western song out of this or a movie. Either way, it sound like one of these days you might just design and build your own customer mower and become the found of a new company like Exmark or Toro.

Never know.
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