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Used the Gator to pull a log out of a low wet spot so it can be processed.

 
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Discussion Starter #42
Busy day today, and since the tractor is still without front wheels, though the new tie-rod and ball joints are installed, I used the ATV for some skidding of the limbs on this big oak to a more convenient processing point:

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We've had a week of great weather, by which I mean no rain, some sun, and temps in the 30's - perfect firewood making weather.
 

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That's awesome. We've had similar weather, with nuisance flurries thrown in. I've been to busy at work to be able to get anything done outdoors at home.

Mike
 
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Jere, have you ever plowed snow with your ATV? Is it better than the tractor or about the same?
 

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Discussion Starter #45
Jere, have you ever plowed snow with your ATV? Is it better than the tractor or about the same?
I've never plowed with this one, though I've plowed with my neighbor's SxS. In my opinion, the SxS has the advantage of a full cab, heat, and wipers. None of those would be true on the ATV. As far as the actual plowing, I believe the JD tractor has several significant advantages:

  1. The tractor pedal actuated hydro is much easier to apply than the thumb actuated ATV for the go
  2. And, by extension, the pedal switch for reverse is much faster than shifting for reverse
  3. I find the hydro plow raise and lower is easier to feather for lifting as I push snow from asphalt to over lawn or other obstacles. The electrical actuated raise and lower on the ATV is jerkier, less precise, and just feels less comfortable. I think you've probably noticed that my driveway is side by side with two other neighbors for the last hundred yards. At the end, it is easy to compare this precision when the snow melts. The neighbor with the SxS has typically gouged up his turf when we clear the ends, while my turf is generally clear of gouging.
  4. I do take advantage of down pressure of the hydro plow in practice, none of the ATV actuators I've ever seen offer down pressure.
  5. I think the weight of the JD provides better traction than the ATV would, though some of this is due to filled tires, it felt better connected even before I filled them.
All opinion, and subject to argument by ATV fans.
 

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I've never plowed with this one, though I've plowed with my neighbor's SxS. In my opinion, the SxS has the advantage of a full cab, heat, and wipers. None of those would be true on the ATV. As far as the actual plowing, I believe the JD tractor has several significant advantages:

  1. The tractor pedal actuated hydro is much easier to apply than the thumb actuated ATV for the go
  2. And, by extension, the pedal switch for reverse is much faster than shifting for reverse
  3. I find the hydro plow raise and lower is easier to feather for lifting as I push snow from asphalt to over lawn or other obstacles. The electrical actuated raise and lower on the ATV is jerkier, less precise, and just feels less comfortable. I think you've probably noticed that my driveway is side by side with two other neighbors for the last hundred yards. At the end, it is easy to compare this precision when the snow melts. The neighbor with the SxS has typically gouged up his turf when we clear the ends, while my turf is generally clear of gouging.
  4. I do take advantage of down pressure of the hydro plow in practice, none of the ATV actuators I've ever seen offer down pressure.
  5. I think the weight of the JD provides better traction than the ATV would, though some of this is due to filled tires, it felt better connected even before I filled them.
All opinion, and subject to argument by ATV fans.
I wouldn't argue with anything but #5. I have a JD445 with a snow blower and a Polaris 800 with a 60" plow. The Polaris is actually a little heavier and has 4WD, though I rarely need to engage it. There is no comparison in the traction department.



The biggest advantage of the ATV is speed. The only time I use the JD anymore is for A LOT of snow. The blower lets me throw the snow far out away from the driveways. But that's more an advantage of a blower over a plow.
 

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Discussion Starter #47
@g huns I knew not everyone would agree, and wasn't trying to convince anyone my answers were universal truths. Just a couple comments to explain why my point 5 might be different than yours:

  1. I plowed with a 2wd 445 for about 14 years and had to add chains and weight to get reliable service on my driveway. My 728 is full time 4wd, has the HDAP tires, filled, and is flat out better by a large margin than my very good 445 was.
  2. My Bombardier XT650 ATV is lighter than my 728. It is faster too, by a lot, and has suspension, so it is easier on the operator. My tires are not as aggressive as yours appear, but even mine are much better in snow in the woods (or in case I see a need to do hot laps in the lawn). It has slightly better ground clearance, and a full skid pan, so busting trail to my wood stacks is better with the ATV. But, once the trail is busted, I usually go back with the 728 to push a double wide path for the next several trips.
  3. On the driveway though, my x728 will work better for me, whether in snow, on snow pack, or on ice.
Like you, I find have access to both lets me choose which one will be best for the task at hand. I rarely (like once every 4-5 years) get enough snow to need a blower. I don't have one, so I either abuse my tractor and bull my way through that plow job.

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Or once every three decades I rely on a bigger machine:
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But, this has all become a diversion from the topic of this thread. Thanks for your comments. Sounds like you have a perfect pair for your homestead.
 

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Jere, comparing the 3 driveways sounds like a perfect job for the drone!

Sounds like the only thing you're lacking (vs the SxS) is a cab. When does that arrive???

Mike
 
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Busy day today, and since the tractor is still without front wheels, though the new tie-rod and ball joints are installed, I used the ATV for some skidding of the limbs on this big oak to a more convenient processing point:

View attachment 2486775

We've had a week of great weather, by which I mean no rain, some sun, and temps in the 30's - perfect firewood making weather.
Jere, I wish we had ground like yours. Looks firm and well drained unlike our wet muddy ground. When I need to pull a log out of a really wet area the logs end up coated in mud which is hard on the chains. I use to just cut rounds where ever the tree fell and carry them to higher, drier ground, but my back is getting weaker and it seems like gravity is getting stronger so I opt for skidding them out now.

We could really use a week of good weather here to lower the water table which is a few inches above ground in a lot of places. Our temps have been in the low 40's and mostly rain for weeks. Last year I was still driving thru several wet muddy spots in our main trail in the middle of August.
 

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Discussion Starter #51
Alternating days, skid one day; saw, split, and stack the next. I'm still working up the top of this big old oak. This will be a very familiar picture, but trust me, it is fresh from this afternoon, and hooked to a new top log:


2487383
 
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