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Discussion Starter #1
I have gone back and fourth with all of my posts and finally started to narrow down my new tractor decision. I have been now convinced from everyone on here that I need a "GT" and I want a gear drive. Few questions:

1) Am I correct in thinking that the DGS6500 is a bigger/better machine then the GT5000 (only from reading the numbers 5000 vs 6500)? The price seems to be saying somethng else, it is appears that the GT5000 usuallly is a bit more expensive.

2) I know with the hydros that there are a few different trannys, is that the same as with the gear driven? Any to stay away from?

3) I am looking serious at the DGS6500 (seem to find better prices on that). I want a 48" deck though (to easily put it on my trailer, with out taking off the deck) and a gear driven. Can anyone assist with the Sears part number for that? I have seen 54" hydros, 48" hydros and a 54" gear but no 48" gear.

Thanks for all the help on this site!

Glenn
 

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Why don't you want a hydro tranny? I had 2 gear drive tractors and can tell you from experience that a Hydro is much easier to manuever and operate especially if you're doing a bunch of back & forth type of work. I'd find it hard to go back to a gear drive at this point.

You can do a side by side comparison of tractors at the Sears website. This is probably the easiest way to figure out the subtle differences (and sometimes you still can't) between the many choices they offer.

Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I am looking for this and was started to be steered away from a hydro becuase of the heat built up. I have an old 1971 Sears 8E custom that does the yard work (that is staying around) and a 1985 MTD that cuts my grass. OF course anything will cut my grass (less then an acre flat). The issues that came in was that I have an 800lbs car dolly that I move form the back yard to the front (whenever I need to use it/once a month maybe) which I currently do with my old Sears. I also want something to plow snow and I move firewood from the backyard (again flat) to my house when I need it. I use one of the bigger size Sears carts (do not have the part number) load it up with wood and bring it closer to the house to burn in the winter once a week. I was told some of the hydros will not hold up due to the tranny heating up etc.... I just want something that (hopefully) will last a very long time and be trouble free. So, I had several people steer me away from a hydro for those reasons.
 

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A GT (garden tractor) will have a heavy duty tranny capable of handling all the tasks you've mentioned plus you have a nice flat yard. Any of the Sears GT's that you're interested in fall into this category. You'll be much happier with a hydro than a gear drive.
 

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I do all of that with my YT3000 that has a light duty Hydro-Gear. Just look at my avatar. That's nearly a third of a cord on there.

I would never go to a manual gear transaxle and give up the hydro but if I were buying a new tractor today, I would go with the GT series with a tougher hydro.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
If this is true then I have a few other questions:
1) Which hydro or does it matter once you get into the GT arena. I have heard the TT K46, TT k66 the hydrogear or what?

2) What about the heat built up I have read about? What is the maintenance on these? Do you just change the fluid, is it transmission fluid?

I guess this should give me years of trouble free service correct? Some of the ones I have watch on youtube etc... Sounds like they have a whine to them. Is that normal for them or are they going bad?

Impressive picture with the YT3000. What model hydro is that?

Thanks again for everything
 

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Most of the horror stories you hear or read about involve the infamous Tuff Torq K46. This is a good tranny if used as it was designed to be used. Most failures are the result of overworking the tranny, i.e. pulling a heavily loaded cart, weighted aerator/lawn roller, real hilly terrain, etc... The oil can overheat and roast the internal workings in its own juices, especially if the cooling fan is clogged with debris or has broken blades. The K46 is a non-serviceable tranny although some guy's have removed them from the transaxle to drain and replace the fluid.

Most if not all GT trannies are serviceable and are built to last. They often have filter screens that catch any debris floating around in the oil and can be replaced when needed. Most folks here recommend getting one tractor up from what you think you need to be on the safe side.
 

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What model hydro is that?
It has a light duty Hydro-Gear 0510 that lacks a drain plug and has only an internal filter.

I don't plow snow with mine but IMHO, a hydro softens the jarring of plowing. Wheels that spin and then suddenly grab can be hard on a manual. When it comes to plowing with a truck, they don't advise that you do it with a manual transmission.

How long a hydro will last has a lot to do with how you drive it. If you baby it a bit and not drive it like you stole it, it should last as long as a manual would.
 

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The hydo-Gear G7 in my 09 GT5000 has a regular screw on oil filter (for the Hydro) with a shield over it. I was surprised to see that!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I just went to Sears and found out that the DGS6500 was last years model (according to Sears) and they can no longer get it. I am guessing I am going to get the GT5000 just wondering on the tranny now. The gear driven one is $2300 and the Hydro was $2600. I am thinking about that price difference and maybe going to the gear driven. Still tossing it around though, I just did not want to go to much higher then $2100 originally so I am getting higher then I want.
 

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I saw a brand new DGS 6500 just like mine sitting at my local Sears a couple of days ago. If you look around you may find a store near you that still has one in stock.

It has the K66 and uses synthetic engine oil in the trans.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
So if I can only find the GT 5000 and get that. Then the one I saw today has the hydrogear transmission in it (Listed underseat). This is the one that is serviceable and will hold up correct? The motor has an oil filter on it and so does the transmission? I imagine it has a typical drain bolt and a fill hole correct?
 

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Brett-JD3320 (post #9) says it's a Hydro-Gear G7 with a screw-on filter. I would think that it is fully serviceable and would also have a drain plug.

Can anyone confirm this???
 

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I will go down after supper and confirm the drain plug, but chances are, if it has a screw on automotive filter for the Hydro, it's serviceable (will take photos of the Hydro in an hour or so) this is on an 09 Excellerator GT5000.

*edit* Photos taken...

My observation is that I don't see a drain plug in the typical sense, but I do see a plate at the front of the Hydro with two bolts securing the plate, I am guessing there is another filter in there (wire mesh?) you can probably drain the fluid from that location? Any super experienced Hydro Gear experts wish to chime in and make sure I'm right here?





 

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Discussion Starter #15
I will go down after supper and confirm the drain plug, but chances are, if it has a screw on automotive filter for the Hydro, it's serviceable (will take photos of the Hydro in an hour or so) this is on an 09 Excellerator GT5000
Thanks so much Brett - This is what I am hopefully looking to get. Comparing this with the gear driven one. It looks to be about $200 dollars more. Have you had any issues?
 

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Franky,

The only issue I have had is lack of traction and slow in reverse (Sears makes them to be slow in reverse, it's limited by pedal travel) forward ground speed is mind blowing! It really does FLY! It does not moan or groan like cheap hydro's sometimes do, it moves the machine with authority and the machine is traction limited by the tires.

I mowed for more than an hour solid today and I did not give the machine any break time in that hour plus. Ran great!
 
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