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GT5000 22HP 54"
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28 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys,

I just got my first tractor a couple weeks ago:

2004 GT5000 Briggs ELS 22HP Hydro with the 54" deck.

I'm actually very impressed with this unit so far. Just the owners manual alone impresses me- It is for the exact model with the exact engine I have. No separate generic manual for the engine, no generic manual covering all the models. I don't know if this is industry standard, but I also just bought a new boat in Feb. (again last year's model- get em' cheaper that way) and it's manual was for the whole product line and it had a separate engine manual for a whole series of engines. I would not have expected that from a lawn tractor.

I have just over one acre of flat lawn and I will probably use it for snow and maybe some gardening down the road. The only thing I have for it right now are the 12 cu ft cart, large sun shade, mulch kit and front bumper (was attached to this floor model- they never bothered to take it off)

Is the front blade attachement useful for anything else besides pushing snow?

I've been reading the Garden Web forums and listening to all the advice.
(I like the format of this forum much better.)

I've installed an hour meter like the ones that others have mentioned.
Checked wiring, oil, battery etc. Purged the hydro Starts great.
Otherwise I don't even have the deck on yet.

There was mention of painting parts with a clear coat- What is everyone's take on this? Also what other tidbits of advice are you guys willing to share with the first time tractor owner?
 

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Member Extraordinaire - Deceased March 2017
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Welcome HGames. I have the Craftsman 3000 series with the Honda motor. But be patient, there are guys on here who have done really sweet things with their GT5000 Craftsman. The site is still new so they will be putting it up soon.

Durwood
 

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HRGames, I have the exact same tractor. It is a horse! You'll love it.

You've got a good start by checking the oil and those type things. The deck is a tad on the heavy side, but that's a good thing in my book. Be sure to shoot a little grease in the front end and on your deck mandrels. Don't overdo it on those mandrels though, or else you may blow the seals out of them.

I don't have the front blade yet, but I have heard others that do have it and they say very good things about it.

Right now, here is how my machine is set up...

Hourmeter
Brush guard
Ag tread rear tires
4-55# rear wheel weights
Sleeve hitch w/electric lift
Upgraded headlamps
Moldboard plow
Disc harrow
Rear grader blade
Sunshade
10 cu. ft. lawn cart (leftover from my Sabre)
175# Brinly Spreader

I did a little test plowing the other day and the hydro handled it very well. Hooked up real nice and didn't spin a tire.

The 22 HP Briggs seems to have some real power, in fact when I did plow with it, it really didn't appear to be maxing out powerwise.

Also, the deck gives a sweet cut. I've cut a few spots in my back yard already this season, just keeping it all even for when the real growth starts.

Enjoy your new tractor!
 

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Old Fart
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3,225 Posts
HRgames -

This is how my GT5000 is set up.

The bucket on the front is a Johnny Bucket Jr. (JBJr) and can be purchased from www.johnnyproducts.com which makes other products also. I use to have a grader/snow blade on the front but sold it after getting the JBJr. I use the JBJr for everything now - dirt/gravel work, snow plowing, etc.. The blade on the back is a rear grader blade that I got from Sears - Part No.24239.

There's a gazillion things you can buy for these things and it seems there's a gazillion things you can do with them.

Enjoy your tractor.

ED
:dancingpa
 

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m-ODD-r8r
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2,357 Posts
Yo HRGames!

I'm veering off topic, but I just noticed your avatar.

You a Sinfest fan too?

Angel
 

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HRGames…

Welcome to the forum. :Welcome:
I have a GT5000 with the 25hp Kohler and 48” deck.
You have gotten yourself a very capable little tractor and I’m sure
you’ll be happy with it.

PS: Post a picture of it.
 

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GT5000 22HP 54"
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28 Posts
Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
RE: CatDaddy

Yes, yes I am. I love the artwork, it reminds me of Calvin & Hobbes.

Everyone else, I will post a picture soon.

Thanks for the responses, I hope this forum takes off.


Also other than greasing the mandrels on the deck, what else to lube up?
And do you think the front deck roller is a good idea or should I see what it does to the lawn first? (Just got the house at the end of the mowing season last year)
 

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m-ODD-r8r
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2,357 Posts
I think the deck roller is a good idea. Even though my yard is 'relatively' flat, there always seems to be something (Live Oak roots near the surface, high spots, something) that bumps the lead edge of the deck. I have noticed that I need to clean it (the pin & clip) because it tends to get wrapped up with grass, etc.

-=A=-
 

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Member 800 post club !!
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953 Posts
Go with the roller, I can't count the times it saved my deck from the same lousy root. I have chopped it, beat it, cut it to no avail. Every summer it will be back and my roller will save my deck...again.
 

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GT5000 22HP 54"
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28 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Deck Roller

I went to Sears the other day to see about ordering a front deck roller and it didn't seem to exist. The girl working there did not seem to know much though. Do you other 54" owners have it on yours and can you give me the model number?
 

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HRGames said:
I went to Sears the other day to see about ordering a front deck roller and it didn't seem to exist. The girl working there did not seem to know much though. Do you other 54" owners have it on yours and can you give me the model number?
I put one on mine that originally didn't come on it. What I did was I found a tractor on Sears website that had the roller, and then entered that model no. in the parts page and ordered it that way. Maybe there is a kit available, but I couldn't find it around these parts so I just put it all together piecemeal and ordered it that way.
 

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If you're not sure about that one here's three 2005 GT5000's. Go to http://www3.sears.com/ and enter any of these tractors in model #

917.276330
917.276340
917.276380

They all have the 54" deck. The part #'s shown under the deck are different than the ones in the kit but look to be the same.
 

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GT5000 22HP 54"
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28 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Thanks

Thanks guys,

I went to the parts site of Sears and ordered the parts I needed. It turned out cheaper that way than to order the kit!


My next question: Putting the deck on. I had a bit of a hard time putting this deck on the other day. The issue was with the spring loaded rear suspendion pin. First of all they are not very springy, it was quite the task getting them to pop back in place- perhaps some lubricant of some kind? But then what about dirt and debris?
combining the lack of springiness with the fact I could not line up the pins with the bracket without disconnecting the front plate made for a frustrating experience. (At this point some guys would have packed it up and taken it back-from posts in other forums, but I find that kind of dumb) I guess this is the way for me to install it from now on, but I wish I hadn't wasted all that time messing around with it following the directions.

Am I the only one, or have others encountered problems with installing it according to directions?
 

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GT5000 22HP 54"
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28 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
I finally got a chance to use my GT today, so I felt it was a good time to snap some pictures.
 

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Good looking machine, HR! How ya liking it so far? Mine cuts grass like butter.

I was telling Jody yesterday in a post that I finally got to use my GT5000 to plow with. It takes a little getting used to with the electric lift on it. I think what I'm going to do is use my manual lift for plowing and disking, and use my electric lift in the winter for grading and such.
 

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HRGames said:
My next question: Putting the deck on. I had a bit of a hard time putting this deck on the other day. The issue was with the spring loaded rear suspendion pin. First of all they are not very springy, it was quite the task getting them to pop back in place- perhaps some lubricant of some kind? But then what about dirt and debris?
combining the lack of springiness with the fact I could not line up the pins with the bracket without disconnecting the front plate made for a frustrating experience. (At this point some guys would have packed it up and taken it back-from posts in other forums, but I find that kind of dumb) I guess this is the way for me to install it from now on, but I wish I hadn't wasted all that time messing around with it following the directions.

Am I the only one, or have others encountered problems with installing it according to directions?
HR, I've yanked mine off twice now, and what seems to work for me is starting with the rear pins each time, both when I take it off and when I put it back on. Once those are engaged, I move to the front and put the front plate on, then attach the plate to the deck.

Like I said, that seems to work best for me. Maybe other GT5000 owners will chime in with their preferred methods. Hope that helps.
 

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KenP
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22 Posts
Put my deck back on for first time today, and agree with 911radioman. Start with back pins first. I did all by myself in about 15 mins like this:
Slide deck under from right, move to front enough to put belt into pulley.
Use short 2x4 between front tire and deck to push deck back and tension belt and allow insert of back pins and clips.
Attach front plate to front hangers, then again use 2x4 to move deck and align front pins. Insert pins and clips.

Went quicker than I thought it would.
Hardest part was manhandling the deck out of the shop where I had cleaned and painted underneath of it. Thing weighs a ton.
 

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GT5000 22HP 54"
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28 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Deck

Can't quite tell from teh picture, but the grass just started to pop up three days ago, so no mowing yet. Probably in a couple days. (I have just over a half hour on it with the little yard work I did this weekend)

I can see where starting at the back to get the deck on is going to be much easier. I'm going to try it again tomorrow when I put the nose roller and mulch kit on. I think I might throw another coat of paint on, while I am painting my older push mower deck. I can already see some nicks and scratches.
 

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GT5000 22HP 54"
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Discussion Starter #20
I got my third cut in yesterday (Read my story in Backyard Forum).
I am impressed with the cut, it really looks nice. I have the mulching kit on and I love it. No clumps (unless you turn too sharp, then it will dump some grass- but just back up and it redistributes it) and no missed grass (except when the grass is a little damp, then the tires push the grass down and it does not pop up enough to get cut properly). I have also gotten pretty good at manuevering this thing so I have minimal trimming with the push mower. Each time I mow, I see how far I can go with it.

My neighbors all have fancy/ expensive machines- A 60" deck Deere, and old Cub and a newer Cub and all have pretty ugly looking lawns right now. Clumps of grass and scalps everywhere. I think they were all the result of poor techniques, but I'll take the best looking lawn in the neighborhood anyway I can.

One thing I noticed last night (Thickest grass so far): On the right side of the deck the grass would blow up and out. By the end of the mowing session, I had a pretty good layer of grass on top of the deck on just the right. THe left was clean. Is this a side-effect of the mulching kit? I have not mowed without it, so I have no comparison.

Also, how often do you guys grease the deck mandrels?
 
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