We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
BD, I think my Deere's 11 or 12 years old now and I love it. Very reliable. I don't want to fix it myself so I have a "crony capitalist" friend (we both own JD stock) give it a maintenance once-over every year. On the hilly, treed acre around my house I occasionally find myself mowing rocks, but the Deere takes a beating. We would be in a sad state if our (relative) "phitness" depended on whether or not we had a riding mower. Not to get too philosophical, but there is something very satisfying about mowing. You look back on things (from that yellow *seat*!) and really feel you've accomplished something.
Ralph Kinney Bennett
>I don't want to fix it myself so I have a "crony capitalist" friend (we both own JD stock)
Is this in response to my initial statement?
because I was referring to the fact that the bigger manufacturers put equipment "keys" on their computer modules that can only be accessed by "authorized repair persons" aka dealerships which charge upwards of $180/hr vs. our small independent shop that charges $50-60/hr. because You don't really own that piece of equipment.
I should also note that all this computerization has to do with emissions. Left to our devices (without gvt handholding and constant global worming fears) we'd leave sulfur in fuel and corn/water out. The fields NEED the sulfur and your carburetor doesn't need the water.
Be assured, that was just a light-hearted pickup on your phrase. I understood what you were driving at and I pretty much agree with everything you said, especially about the role of the environazis in making machinery more troublesome. My "crony" is a retired Deere dealer/mechanic. Manufacturers are always dreaming of ways to build "loyalty" into their products and they love it when they manage to get legislators and bureaucrats to back them up. The "Check Engine" light seldom has anything to do with the engine, but usually signals some transgression against clean air pecksniffery.
Ralph Kinney Bennett
Nice Deere. I have a 1970 JD120. It is no longer in the mowing rotation and is just a keepsake. I now mow with a Kubota that is about 8 years old.
You have to keep on top of that grass or it will no longer be a pleasure to mow. Mowing rocks happens. A dinged blade can be replaced but do not compromise the driveshaft.
A new yellow seat from JD runs about $100. Kubota seats are about the same but in black.
Always wear gloves and ear protection.
Driving a little tractor is almost as much fun as running a big one. There is something about operating machinery.
Deere makes good stuff, but around here (smaller city, deep south) Deere dealers are losers. Poorly located, poor parts inventories, poor service turnarounds... I bought a Deere rider in 1978 from our local local dealer COD my driveway, and he still hasn't delivered it. After a week or so, I went out and bought a Snapper and have used them ever since. On my third or fourth one now. And word on the street is don't buy Deere except from a Deere dealer. The stuff they make for big box stores is said to be, uh, different, as in cheaply made.
On the bright side, I did buy a Deere edger with a B&S I/C off the floor from the same dealer in 1977, which I've maintained myself. It's supposedly a re-branded McLane. Still going strong. I had to do a little de-rusting over the years, change the guts of the cutterhead, replace the belt and pull cord a time or two and rebuild the carb. (I edge about 1,200 lf every couple of weeks from April to November, so it's been worked pretty hard for non-commercial use.)
I bought a Deere string trimmer once. Made in Mexico. I immediately returned it to the Home Depot. Went and bought a Stihl. That was pre-Y2K and it still runs.
I dug up a 30-40 pound field rock the other day. Now I don't run over it but I do have a good sized hole to fill. The rocks that show through are like icebergs: a little showing on the top and so much more beneath the surface.
That "green goo" does look problematic. It looks damp and apparently suffers from lack of sunlight. Moss grows in the worst dirt.
No Johnny Deere in my little burg. Kubota is the only choice in town if you want a dealer nearby. That orange Japanese stuff is really good. Not to say that there aren't some JD drivers around.
If only anything I own or could buy would give the service of my old '49 Farmall. I do like modern equipment but it will not be around for 65 years. The old H starts first time every time. It is not particularly easy to operate and is somewhat of a gas hog but I can work on it myself and it has a very distinctive growl at full throttle. Hundreds of thousands were made so it is not rare at all. Plenty are still in service and parts are available although not always cheap--nothing of any quality is these days.