My Tractor Forum banner

1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
First I have to say thanks to all of you guys. I have spent a considerable amount of time at this web site and have learned a great deal about tractors. It has really helped my decision making.

Like many here I am buying a new house and need to upgrade my equipment. However, unlike many my primary objective is snow removal with a minor objective being mowing. When you live in Alaska winter is a lot longer than summer. At my current residence I spend about three hours with a walk behind Craftsman Snow blower. This thing is no slouch at 11 hp and 30” but still takes a considerable amount of time. It is near twenty years old and I simply cannot complain about this machine. A few belts, cables, and regular oil changes and it has not missed a beat. If it quit tomorrow it owes me nothing. My mowing has been confined to about an hour with a self-propelled push mower. Therefore not much grass to mow.

I am now moving and will have more grass and snow to remove. Probably ¾ acre of relatively flat grass and about that much snow given driveways and such. I don’t see my current equipment making life any easier. Truthfully I could get by with a mower/blower from Lowes, Home Depot, or Sears for many years with little complaints. However, I’m just not up for that any more. Given what I expect my uses would be and then going one step higher I could land with an X300 series and probably do quite well. Especially with an x320 or x340. But then again I am more than tired of dreading my snow removal chores. I subscribe to the “Buy Once Cry Once” theory so my decision has landed me with a 48” x500. This should get my chores done in very good fashion in short order. Not to mention the tractor will probably outlast me. Who knows, I might need some more “attachments” so I can have a small garden. Wife likes to plant things anyway.

I have compared just about everything. We only have Deere and Kubota dealers locally with a scattering of Husqvarna places that can order stuff. I do my own maintenance so short of warranty work and parts I probably won’t be spending much time at the dealer. Isn’t that what we all want…Not having to spend time at the dealer! I considered all of the 500 series but running hydraulics when the temps are south of zero fahrenheit I think I want to avoid. The tractor will be kept in a heated garage but still hydraulics are just something I think I would prefer to avoid. I realize this doesn’t really apply but an x500 will be somewhat overkill for what I really need. The only substitute for torque and horsepower is more torque and horsepower! Especially with a positive traction transaxle.

I have two 500cc Arctic Cat ATV’s that I considered using but I just would prefer a snow blower to a plow. There is a snow blower available for ATV’s as well as a grooming mower but I think the little tractor is a better route.

Anyway, just wanted to say thanks and I intend to be a happy x500 owner very soon. Here is what I intend to get with the tractor. Please let me know of anything else I might need for mowing and snow removal.

44” Snow Blower
4 ea Suitcase Weights
Rear Wheel Weights
Heavy Duty Tires
Tire Chains
Front Engine Cover
Front Bumper
Brush Guard.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
13,363 Posts
Welcome to MTF. I think you are on the right track. Maybe some of our Canadian members can chime in on the temps and hydro. You will still have a hydro trans at the temps I think you are talking about it might give everything fits. I know there was a thread this winter dealing with how cold is too cold.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the welcomes! According to the JD web site the rear bracket is standard equipment for the 2013 x500. Doesn't say this for the 2012 so if I do not get a 2013 will certainly be getting the weight bracket.

My concerns for the hydraulics in low temps is the oil contained in the hoses. The transaxle holds more than a gallon and as long as the tractor is moving the oil will be moving around and generating at least a little bit of heat. In my experience this isn't necessarily so with oil in hydraulic hoses and actuators. I would suspect the hoses would hold no more than about 1/2 gallon but I really don't want very cold oil going back into the transaxle. Same for power steering. While we do not have a lot of problems with automobile power steering until about -45 degrees it seems to me that not having power steering isn't that big of an issue and eliminating it just removes one more potential problem. Is this line of thought in the right direction? I too will be really interested to hear what others that live in very cold climates have to say.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
13,363 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
GOOD INFO! Thanks for the links. This sort of reaffirms my choice for staying away from the hydraulics. It also raises the question of since I'll be storing it in a heated environment of at least 50 degrees F hydraulics might not be such a bad idea. Only time they will be exposed to cold temps is while they are actually out working. So....I have some more reading to do.

Most of my work is at -10 degrees F or above. To get much below this point the weather has to be very clear. Clear weather = No snow. FWIW My experiences are that almost any machine on the market will perform down to about zero degrees F as delivered. After zero degrees F you need to start thinking about synthetic fluids, engine block heaters, warm up cycles, etc. With these it will be okay until about -30 degrees F then after that just PARK it and wait for warmer weather. There are some who run their equipment into the -40 and -50 degree F range but they are hardier souls than I. Or is it I am ah...more experienced than they.

After I run my new tractor in the winter a bit with the blower I may consider one of the "Canvas Cab's". Perhaps a small heater in the canvas cab and I would be all set!
 

·
Run ahead of the pack
Joined
·
9,968 Posts
The bracket for the suitcase weights :fing32:
Thanks for the welcomes! According to the JD web site the rear bracket is standard equipment for the 2013 x500. Doesn't say this for the 2012 so if I do not get a 2013 will certainly be getting the weight bracket.

My concerns for the hydraulics in low temps is the oil contained in the hoses. The transaxle holds more than a gallon and as long as the tractor is moving the oil will be moving around and generating at least a little bit of heat. In my experience this isn't necessarily so with oil in hydraulic hoses and actuators. I would suspect the hoses would hold no more than about 1/2 gallon but I really don't want very cold oil going back into the transaxle. Same for power steering. While we do not have a lot of problems with automobile power steering until about -45 degrees it seems to me that not having power steering isn't that big of an issue and eliminating it just removes one more potential problem. Is this line of thought in the right direction? I too will be really interested to hear what others that live in very cold climates have to say.

Welcome to MTF :howdy:

You have choose a very good machine, like mention above a weather enclosure is very recommended to "cut the wind"

John Deere make a nice model of enclosure for the X select series.



But I prefer the OTC one my self. :)



About the weight bracket all X3__ and X5__ Select series don't need an extra bracket they all use the rear hitch plate for the suitcase weights.

Like you I use mainly my tractor for snow duty. :fing32:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Those are indeed some very nice weather enclosures. I expect I will have to do some investigating into these. First thing will be to measure the opening into my garage to make sure it isn't too tall.
 

·
X530, 48 Deck/44 Blower
Joined
·
899 Posts
Re: Moving Up (Electric lift kit)

Another option to consider when buying an X500 with a blower is the electric lift kit. One of the other forum members commented recently that they bought one for $330 (US).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Re: Moving Up (Electric lift kit)

Another option to consider when buying an X500 with a blower is the electric lift kit. One of the other forum members commented recently that they bought one for $330 (US).

Really good point. I have considered this, especially if wife is going to use it. It occurs to me that the electric lift actuator must have some sort of sealed hydraulics that actually does the lifting. Lifting a full size snow blower would be a tall order for the toughest 12 vdc motor to lift. So now I'm back to having hydraulics on the tractor. Perhaps a 530 is looking better. Especially if I can get it with a 48" deck.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
16,678 Posts
Re: Moving Up (Electric lift kit)

Really good point. I have considered this, especially if wife is going to use it. It occurs to me that the electric lift actuator must have some sort of sealed hydraulics that actually does the lifting. Lifting a full size snow blower would be a tall order for the toughest 12 vdc motor to lift. So now I'm back to having hydraulics on the tractor. Perhaps a 530 is looking better. Especially if I can get it with a 48" deck.
No the electric actuator In the electric lift Kit Deere Uses has a Long threaded Rod Through Gears to raise and Lower. Keep In Mind Most actuators are better today then they were 40 Years ago. I Have a Cub Cadet 106 with a 40 Year Old actuator That has Never Been rebuilt and It's Still working great. That said I Prefer Hydraulics if I Can Have them On a Tractor. Yes You Can Get a 48inch deck On a X530 we Have a Few Members with them. See the X530 is shipped from the factory with a 54inch deck and all You dealer has to do is swap out the deck with another X500 or X300 series with a 48inch deck. BTW You can even Use the 44inch Blower with the X530 as well:thThumbsU
 

·
4K Poster!!!!
Joined
·
4,552 Posts
Great choice your going to love it! I had a x500 and it was a great tractor!


Sent from the MTF Free App
 

·
X530, 48 Deck/44 Blower
Joined
·
899 Posts
Re: Moving Up (Electric lift kit)

Sergeant beat me to this answer (though I'm sure he has more details than I would have had, too). I'm one of the X530-with-48-deck owners and I can tell you that the combination works well for me in my situation (Minneapolis 'burbs). Others with this combo live in Minnesota and Canada, so, though it ain't Alaska, it isn't Miami either! I also have the 44" blower since storage space is at a premium for me in the heated garage, especially in the winter when the blower is mounted, etc.

Anyway, I think an X500 with the electric lift kit is a good alternative if you don't want hydraulics, otherwise, I'd simply suggest the X530. Are there any other X530 owners near you that the dealer might be able to refer you to for a brief chat? It might help you decide if others are (or are not) using an X530 successfully in very similar conditions, etc.

No the electric actuator In the electric lift Kit Deere Uses has a Long threaded Rod Through Gears to raise and Lower. Keep In Mind Most actuators are better today then they were 40 Years ago. I Have a Cub Cadet 106 with a 40 Year Old actuator That has Never Been rebuilt and It's Still working great. That said I Prefer Hydraulics if I Can Have them On a Tractor. Yes You Can Get a 48inch deck On a X530 we Have a Few Members with them. See the X530 is shipped from the factory with a 54inch deck and all You dealer has to do is swap out the deck with another X500 or X300 series with a 48inch deck. BTW You can even Use the 44inch Blower with the X530 as well:thThumbsU
 

·
MTF Tractor Nut
Joined
·
4,432 Posts
Sounds like the X500 should suit you well. Enjoy!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,182 Posts
The x500 should serve you well but I like my x530, especially in the winter with the power steering and hydraulic lift. Very easy to steer and no effort to raise and lower the blower. It does get cold here in PEI in the winter, but not as cold as Alaska for sure. No issues with any of my hydraulics but only been used for 2 winters so far. The picture stladrill posted with the OTC cab is mine and I like it a lot for winter use. I do remove it for the summer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
132 Posts
I like my X500 with the manual lift and the 44 blower. Do yourself a favor though, get the weather enclosure. I only have the soft one but with really keeps the blowing snow off you when your trying to get the job done.

I did not initially buy the enclosure and one snowfall was enought to convince me otherwise.

Enjoy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
We indeed have winter in Alaska but often my friends in NWT and Wisconsin report more severe winters than we are having up here.

Sgt. thanks for the info about the electric actuator. Having never seen one I just expected it was an eletro-hydraulic shuttle valve arrangement. A rotary screw actuator would indeed have the torque to lift a considerable load. I'll have to investigate this further. However, I am leaning more and more to the 530 especially since I know I can get a 48" deck. I just have no need for a 54" deck and if it wasn't more narrow than the tractor itself I would be looking for a 42" deck. The 47" snow blower being hydraulic driven and just a considerably tougher piece of equipment overall is another determining factor. Decisions...Decisions....Decisions.
 

·
X530, 48 Deck/44 Blower
Joined
·
899 Posts
DanAKAL, Just as you can get a 48 deck with the X500, you can get a 47 blower. However, you will really want to have the electric lift kit if you go this route since the 47 blower weighs much more than the 44 blower.

Basically, you can get either the X530 or the X500 with an electric lift kit and have the same attachments options. I got the smaller attachments mostly for the space savings they offered.

I didn't need a 47 blower and I didn't need a 54 deck, so I got the smaller versions of each.

Also, as I understand it, the hydraulically driven 47 blower is for the X700-series tractors only. The 47 blower that fits the X500-series tractors is belt driven. Others can confirm this, but that is my understanding.

We indeed have winter in Alaska but often my friends in NWT and Wisconsin report more severe winters than we are having up here.

Sgt. thanks for the info about the electric actuator. Having never seen one I just expected it was an eletro-hydraulic shuttle valve arrangement. A rotary screw actuator would indeed have the torque to lift a considerable load. I'll have to investigate this further. However, I am leaning more and more to the 530 especially since I know I can get a 48" deck. I just have no need for a 54" deck and if it wasn't more narrow than the tractor itself I would be looking for a 42" deck. The 47" snow blower being hydraulic driven and just a considerably tougher piece of equipment overall is another determining factor. Decisions...Decisions....Decisions.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top