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Hey everyone...hope you are all well.

I am in desperate (according to me, not my wife) need of a new machine with which to mow, etc. Up until a couple weeks ago, I had been running a 75 or 76 212 JD. She finally gave out, and I couldn't justify the cost of a repower on the old girl.

I need to find a replacement, and am looking for some suggestions on what to buy or possibly someone who has something that will do the trick.

I currently have a yard of about 0.6 acre to mow, much of which is sloped and have a few trees/obstacles to mow around, and my driveway is approx. 120 feet of concrete which is a pain for snow removal when less than several inches of accumulation.

I'm familiar with the JD models, and would really like to get my hands on a 318 with 46-ish deck (I think the 50" would be too much for the yard now) and a blade. I know this is probably way more of a machine than I need currently, but at some point we will move and have a larger yard/acreage to take care of.

My budget is probably going to be in the neighborhood of $2000 max. I am apprehensive of buying something that turns out to be a big steaming pile, and the wife definitely won't let me live that down (she thinks spending 5 hours pushing it with a worn out 40 year old pusher is the way to go...obviously she doesn't do much mowing...lol).

I've been looking at dealers in central IA and there are quite a few options out there, but I'm wondering what to look at, problem areas for models, etc., essentially just some buying advice. I don't want to go to sears or home despot, etc. and buy some junker that will break down and be easier to replace than to fix in two years.

Any input you could provide would be greatly appreciated. I really need to get something in my garage soon. I have a loaner machine for the moment, but I want out from under that obligation asap.

I'll probably post again in a JD forum.

Thanks in advance for your help!
 
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