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HI all,

I am keeping my eyes open for a JD under $500. I have found a few 170's, 175's, 185's, LX's etc. But they sell quickly.

As you can see I am eyeing older models (non GT), BUT I want them to be in reasonable condition, certainly not mint. Guess there is some nostalgia in my criteria as well. Home Depot LT's, L's are not even on my shortlist.

I am 1 acre, in FL trees and obstacles, and a gradual slope. 38-46 max deck size. No points ignition.

What are some other desirable models within my range?

Also I am somewhat mechanically inclined. Whats a good basic checklist to have when looking at a mower?

Thanks.

GS
 

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I am wary of any of the gear drive models (160, 170, 180) because the transaxles can be problematic. Not that I would avoid the right deal on a gear drive but I'd definitely take it for a thorough test drive in all gears. Avoid anything that has been extensively plowed although in Florida what you'll find probably hasn't seen snow duty. My favorite is still the 185 with a 38" deck. I'll never mow without a hydro again and the 17HP does all I need. The 175 is pretty capable as well although I've not had much seat time on it. The older Kawasaki motors tend to be almost bulletproof unless you run them without oil. I have no experience with the LX series or other motors except the Kohler in my 214. If you look at anything that has sat in sheds/barns extensively be sure to check for rodent infestation in the motors. The old Kohlers are mansions for the little vermin. My 175 sat for 4+ years before I got it and no mice in the Kawasaki.
 
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