Mower or Tractor?

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by wildwood99, Jun 25, 2008.

  1. wildwood99

    wildwood99 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 1

    We live on 3 acres with 2 horses. The pasture space is most of the property (about 2 acres). Mowing around the house with our garden tractor, a 23hp Craftsman with a 48" deck, is difficult because of the many obstacles and hills. We usually default to a push mower. In addition, using a garden tractor in the pasture is dangerous because of steep hills and hidden ruts. We usually ask a neighbor with a large tractor to brush-hog it several times a year. Is there a single machine that can help us in ALL areas without breaking the bank? We also have a small manure spreader (about 13 bushels) we would like to tow around the pasture.
  2. Marcos

    Marcos LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,720

    Why don't you post a few digital pics on this thread...showing some good examples of some of these slopes you're talking about ?

    I'm not EVEN a professional mowing contractor....but I know the differences between what's out there.
    I've gotta think that any hydro walk behind mower (maybe with a stand-on sulky, that you could jump on and off of occasionally, as warranted, according to mowing situation) would do this kind of terrain much better than the considerably high center of gravity that you get with a Craftsman garden tractor.

    I would think a hydro WB, such as a Scag or Exmark, with a HP of between 19-21 would be satisfactory to pull an AVERAGE SIZED person on a sulky along hills (however..... not necessarily 'up and down' each and every hill. Sometimes you've got to 'step off' when the mower needs the extra power for traction !!).
    That HP is about right to also run a deck size of between 52"-54", usually.

    And you'd want to make sure the rear wheels are at least 16" diameter.
    This will help you get out of tough spots !

    I'm sure there are others on this site more intimate with the 'ins and outs' of WB mowers who could better expand upon this for well as recommendations for specific makes and models.
  3. jeffinsgf

    jeffinsgf LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 641

    A tractor big enough to brush hog your pasture is going to be just as (or more) awkward in your lawn. It may handle the hills better than the garden tractor, but obstacles would be the same. Never the less, in your situation I would have what is known as a sub-compact tractor (SCUT). Look at the Kubota B and BX series and the John Deere 2305, 2210, and 2520
  4. Jay Ray

    Jay Ray LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,510

    For my garden tractor I got some wheel spacers to go between the rear wheels and hubs on the axle (from a machinist who makes them on eBay) for a wider stance. Then I got some rear wheel weights to lower the center of gravity. It is a much safer machine on hills.

    You could trim it out with a good 21" or a used wb.

    I see old International Cubs and Allis Chalmers model B tractor's with belly mowers going pretty cheap. Have heard they are good on pastures but have never used one. Huge turning radius is probably the biggest drawback.
  5. jkason

    jkason LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 546

    Keep the Craftsman for the manure spreader and get a 32" or 36" hydro walk behind (if a 48" is too big).

    If you want a sulky that is easy to get on and off of without having to worry about balancing on it, check out the Proslide advertisement on this site.

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