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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

I am going to purchase another tractor the replace my Craftsman LT1000. I spent $950 on it 7 years ago. I need to keep the new tractor $1800 or under. I just cannot believe that the specs on these 2 mowers could be so askew. Both are $1799 but the similarities end there:
The Snapper has a much larger gas tank, a bigger 23 hp V-twin ELS, it weights more, is larger all around, has a 14" turning radius versus 18", a 15" seat versus 11", and has the better K46 transmission.
Am I missing something here, or do I need to spend more money to get equal features. The John Deere dealer suggests a 135SE, but it's a few hundred more.
The funny thing is, I saw a Snapper LT125 at Sears and didn't give it too much thought. I did the comparison on the Deere web site. Many of the specs on the Snapper were blank, which prompted me to fill in the blanks.

Any suggestions? Is the Snapper all sizzle no steak?

Bobby
 

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:Welcome1:

both are entry level machines and you can reasonably expect either to last about the length of tiem the LT1000 did, maybe more maybe a little less. neither are made to the quality their name implies, so don't let that fool you! when dealing with box store model tractors, find the one that fits your body and your wallet the best, that is the only REAL difference in them.
 

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Gosh, I hope that's not right... If it is, I will just buy another cheapie tractor. I thought $1800 would give you a bit more quality
Wouldn't that be nice?
 

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I have too be honest. When I was first looking at tractors before I found my 332. I was impressed with the snapper I saw in sears. It looked like it was built very well. The sheet metal was heavier then the craftsman and it had a larger engine and was actually cheaper. I don't have any experience with the LT john Deere series but the snapper actually looked good. ok, now don't criticize me to much. . . . . .:hide:
 

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unfortunately, you are paying extra for the JD name on those LA models.

But just to clarify on that tranny. The T40 and K46 are the same. Why they label them differently I don't know, but when I emailed Tuff Torq on the specs for the T40 they referred me to the K46 spec sheet.
 

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For whatever reason, the sub $3K market is pretty much all the same. Go on-line and compare the spec's - if you blacked out the mfg. name the differences would be marginal. JMHO
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks Guys,
But I am really more confused now. My budget is fixed and $1800 is the highest I could possibly go.
If the T40 transmission is the same, why does the x300 get the K46????
I heard engines, transmissions and frame strength are things I need to focus on. I think that all of the frames & decks in my price range are 12 gauge... anyone know otherwise?
In the Briggs & Stratton engine line Intek, ESL, Vangaurd in order of quality. Is this correct?
I find it hard to believe all tractors under $3000 are essentially the same. I mean they all have different engines. I don't buy a tractor all that often, so I'm comparing specs. I really had my heart set on a Deere, but comparing these models, I think the Snapper is a better deal [for me].
This process has been kinda disheartening. Folks saying that the 100 series is no good..... stay away from box stores..... there's no differences between models, etc, etc. My need are relatively average; mowing 3/4 acres, mowing parts of my very wet back yard, pulling a dump cart. No blades or snow blowing. Heck, I spent 2 weeks a few years ago hauling tons of dirt with my Craftsman 17.5 single cylinder Intek. Never had a problem. To hear some people talk, I couldn't do all that with a sub $2000 tractor with a K46 transmission! I just don't know what to believe at this point.
 

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These low end LT's do get alot of "bashing" but most of us can't afford 5k for to mow our < 1 acre lawns. I personally am very happy with my LA135 I use for mowing, aerating and dethatching less than 1/2 arce. Now I am no expert on the "Snappers" but I believe they are a lessor quality machine compared to the "Simplicity's". ( hope I don't catch **** for that statement):sport30:

I was actually going to buy the LA115 but went with the 135 for the twin cylinder, bigger tires,bigger seat,etc.

Lowes has had a 10% off sale putting the 135 right at $1800.00 and the 115 at about $1600.00.....that is alot of money for some of us, but as I have said before, I don't know how anyone can produce a rider and make a profit at these price points.

It's my understanding that for mowing and light duty task's, with proper maintinance, either of your choices will be just fine for your needs.:goodl:
 

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I do not know why JD uses a T40 or exactly what the differences are between it and a K46, I just know it has been widely stated on this board that they were the same. When I tried to investigate it myself and sent the email to Tuff Torq asking for the T40 spec sheet they sent me a link to the K46 spec sheet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks c1tobor,
I didn't know that Lowes ran 10% off sales. Now I will take a closer look at the 135. My budget is inflexible... I hate the thought I'm just throwing my money away buying $1800 worth of tractor. My neighbors Toro going on 10 years.... and runs fine. I think he paid 1700 years ago. I really didn't care the the Toro 425... the gas pedal seemed to high and not too comfortable
 

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I have the lowest of the low end JD and haven't had any real problems with yet (3rd year) except for a occasional annoying squeak which i have yet to find.I could of bought a little higher model but i wanted a manual transmission.My low end LA100 has a spicer dana 4360 tranny that i never here much about maybe because not many buy manual anymore.I dont know much about snappers so cant help you on that one.I believe the lower end tractors of today are designed for mowing fairly level low acreage lawns and pulling a small cart around.If thats what you plan on doing in your yard i would say ether low end tractor listed above will do a good job and last 10 years or more with proper maintenance.
 

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I don't mean to throw you a curve, but have you considered a used Deere? There are plenty of models that will fit the bill with a little better build quality. Try machinefinder.com and you can get a good price on used units. Or Craigslist for that matter...

Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks Guys for the replies. It's nice to hear other are enjoying their entry level tractors. Used is an option, but it's hard to justify the math:
I saw a pretty nice Simplicity Regent that 5 years old for $1200 + I'd have to rent a truck to get it home. If the life span of that tractor is 12 years... that leaves 7 years left. Plus no warrantee. The higher end Deere's around here don't seem to listed at bargain prices. Seems like an $1800 tractor that will last 10 years new isn't that more expensive than used. Also, the used tractor here seem to be 10-12 years old as it is.
 

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Just a note about the K-46/T-40. When I was researching my tractor, a 2008 X304, at the end of the 2007, start of the 2008 season, the T-40 was listed in the Tuff-Torq Website. It was not listed with the lawn/garden tractor trannys, the K-46 was the lightest you could buy. It was listed as an industrial/utility tranny, think Gator/Mule/light utility vehicle. It was NOT designed to pull anything. It is NOT a tractor transmission. Since then, I guess JD has grown tired of answering questions about it, so they bought exclusive license to the design, removed it from the TT website, and told them to say it is equal to a K46. If it is equal to a K46, why not just use a K46. Craftsman puts K46s in their cheapest tractors with hydros, why can't Deere.
steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Not sure. It's clear that John Deere does use K46 on some higher priced models. It doesn't make sense that it's all the same. Regarding the Craftsman tractor.... the one I looked at last night (3000/4000 series) did not have a K46. I got underneath and it said Hydrostat and looked a lot smaller than the Snapper that uses a K46
 

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Used is an option, but it's hard to justify the math:
I saw a pretty nice Simplicity Regent that 5 years old for $1200 + I'd have to rent a truck to get it home. If the life span of that tractor is 12 years... that leaves 7 years left. Plus no warrantee. The higher end Deere's around here don't seem to listed at bargain prices. Seems like an $1800 tractor that will last 10 years new isn't that more expensive than used. Also, the used tractor here seem to be 10-12 years old as it is.
I think if you look around you can find deals

I paid $1700 for my X320 with a bagger.

http://www.mytractorforum.com/showthread.php?t=85338&highlight=x320
 

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The T-40 is on TuffTorq's site. If you go to "Services" then to "Catalouge"...it will be listed there. I made a post last week to have someone who is good with mechanical drawings take a look at the two and see what the difference was, but got no replies. The exploded views of each transaxle are "almost" identical.
 
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