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Many Opions; I have had both Still have a 335 and 2 318 . The facts that We have are like this . The onan engine is a 3000, hour plus engine, The Kawie, Is about 1500, hours engine, The kaw, maintenance is double on the onan. for exanple the air filter the the kaw. is half the onan size yet it costs more.I'm talking over the counter. Not EBAY shopping., We classafy the 325/335/345. as lawn tractors. The 300/314/316/318 fall in the Garden tractors; My wife mows most of our lawns meny achers, I had a collection of 38 tractors, Including 2 425 s Her favorite, mower was the 318. and I bought her a X300 that was a mistake so was the L130. she cut for a while on them , then back to the 318. And as you all know . the women is allways right, Hay take your wife have her cut a bit of grass. You will go home with the right one , a happy man.
 

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Engine Tech , :Welcome1: !!!

Interesting post you have shared on the JD 318's (Cons) , I've never heard of these these before ...

Later,x595
I have had a 318 for years. I have friends that have had them for 15+ years. None of have had hardly any of the issues you speak of. Hydro is solid, mule drive is not hard on belts, and is not hard to get off, Steering wheel in the gut??? I'm not a big guy but I am 6'0" 200lbs, and I disagree completely. Hand hydro - yes foot hydro are a little more comfortable, but it is all what you have. I don't mind it at all.

For $2K you can have 345 with a deck (maybe) or a 318 with deck, blower, blade.

In my experienced opinion.
 

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Somebody please educate me. What is this hand hydro and foot hydro y'all are talking about?
 

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The 318's hydro lever is on the dash that pull back and forth for forward and reverse. The 345 is controlled by foot pedal on your right foot.
 

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Here is a picture. The hand hydro is the chrome handle with orange knob on the right side of the dash.
 

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I have had a 318 for years. I have friends that have had them for 15+ years. None of have had hardly any of the issues you speak of. Hydro is solid, mule drive is not hard on belts, and is not hard to get off, Steering wheel in the gut??? I'm not a big guy but I am 6'0" 200lbs, and I disagree completely. Hand hydro - yes foot hydro are a little more comfortable, but it is all what you have. I don't mind it at all.

For $2K you can have 345 with a deck (maybe) or a 318 with deck, blower, blade.

In my experienced opinion.
Hey, thanks for the welcome to MTF folks! I love to see so much interest in current and older JD machines. I love 'em all

My experience with 318's comes from supporting these machines when they were still used commercially by landscapers. These days, they are only run by residential folks. So, a lot of what I'm talking about were on those units that saw a lot of hours. Often hard hours. However, I feel they are legitimate concerns given that a lot of residential units are growing in hours too. Trust me, I've traded many a 318 for a 345 and folks were tickled pink. Granted, they were not using the "heavy-duty garden tractor" aspects of the 318...they were only mowing.

And in my opinion, an Onan is toast at 1,500 hrs. Some last longer for sure, but I'm spooked beginning at 1,000hrs. From there it's a downhill ride of lost power, smoke, and oil consumption. I've traded for many over the years, and that's what I've seen from average folks. This Onan experience is also from the 420 and the commercial front mowers that used the Onans. A Kaw will out last a Onan any day, air cooled or L/C. Both are rebuildable, which is good.

The 318 transmission is very robust. The hydro is extremely stout given it's pump design and slipper-foot hydro pistons. The turing brakes are a poor-man's diff lock, which is awesome. Just brake the spinning tire and you'll **** power to the other side.

The ergonomic comments are moot if you've never owned or extensively run any post-318 model. 318's are cramped compared to newer models.

Did you know early 318's would crack frames? The fix...JD removed one tranny bolt so the trans could twist some to take some stress off the frame. There was a service bulletin on it back in the day. You just don't hear about that stuff these days. :lalala:

Like I sort of stated, I expected these comments to rock the boat a bit. I bleed green, I really do. And, I love the old 300's and 400's. But, these machines do have some issues that anyone looking to buy one should be aware of. All of this said, a 318 was far and away better than any of the other machines on the market at the time.
 

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Many Opions; I have had both Still have a 335 and 2 318 . The facts that We have are like this . The onan engine is a 3000, hour plus engine, The Kawie, Is about 1500, hours engine, The kaw, maintenance is double on the onan. for exanple the air filter the the kaw. is half the onan size yet it costs more.I'm talking over the counter. Not EBAY shopping., We classafy the 325/335/345. as lawn tractors. The 300/314/316/318 fall in the Garden tractors; My wife mows most of our lawns meny achers, I had a collection of 38 tractors, Including 2 425 s Her favorite, mower was the 318. and I bought her a X300 that was a mistake so was the L130. she cut for a while on them , then back to the 318. And as you all know . the women is allways right, Hay take your wife have her cut a bit of grass. You will go home with the right one , a happy man.
Great review Tony bachler,
- I just assumed a Liquid Cooled Kawasaki would outlast an Air Cooled ONAN / interesting hour life estimate, maybe the old die hard ONAN is practically bulletproof @ double the life
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If the budget is ~~~ $2K
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- getting either a nice reliable old 318 or low hour more modern 345, can be somewhat difficult in some areas / just don't pop up as often as one would like

Here is a current link from our own MTF classifieds - see what $1900 will buy today / within these forum walls:
2003 Deere GT235- 18HP Kawasaki twin. 48C mower deck. Only 229.6hrs. Engine runs smooth and the transmission is tight. Deck spindles and bearings are all good. Cosmetically the tractor is in good shape (front bumper is missing). Mechanically its in great shape. $1900.
http://www.mytractorforum.com/showthread.php?t=133865

The $2000 deals will be had, by those that live-&-breath DEERE & constantly search for the good finds:
- others may have to be content, in going over-minimum-budget to get a good reliable machine - just depends how much time is available to look

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Beaumont { :>))
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www.petperfectexpress.com
1992 JD 318 original paint w/484 hr. on P218g Onan & #49 snow blower / 1998 JD GT262 w/brand new Kawasaki OHV & 48" rebuilt deck
http://www.mytractorforum.com/showthread.php?t=135838
 

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Mark, I would agree that if you're looking to get a 345 you need to up your limit a bit. It should be less maintenance and a well maintained one will last your for a long time. The FEL will be easier to operate with a foot control, of that there is no doubt! I'll be interested to see what you end up with!
 

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Has anyone seen ChimChim?
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It reads like a 318 cult in here.... I personally would take the word of the guy who worked at a dealership and serviced the machines when they were new, over the opinions of people like myself (John or Jane Six Pack).

But at the end of the day my opinion is, they are both beasts :) One is a bit more ergo!

Beau,

Your dobie is precious! :)
 

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ThkU Brett-JDX748 ----- for the dog complement re. our loving AMY / old girl now !!

She had a burger off the BBQ tonight & waits politely until it's cooked / most other times just lazing around, until its time to play.
Every morning my wife gets her a plain TimBit with our morning coffee - she's a little spoiled, but totally worth it / just how we like it.
AMY simply loves friends, family and vehicle rides and even gets mad if she misses the mailman's daily outside visit...Enjoy the pics. buddy.

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Beaumont { :>)) www.petperfectexpress.com
1992 JD 318 original paint w/484 hr. on P218g Onan & #49 snow blower / 1998 JD GT262 w/brand new Kawasaki OHV & 48" rebuilt deck
http://www.mytractorforum.com/showthread.php?t=135838
 

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Beau,

Yep Amy is a beautiful girl! My Dutchess also lives a very similar life :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
Thanks again guys. I will resurect this thread when I finally pick one up. For now, I will probably look first for the right 345 and if I stumble upon great 318 deal who knows?

Mark
 
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