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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking at a 1999 JD 345 with less than 70 hours on it. Since the machine is about 10 years old, should I have any concerns with the lack of use? From what I understand it was used for two seasons and then the owner was disabled and could no longer use it.

The owner has stated that the tractor was prepared and stored by a dealer. Is there anything I should be looking for when checking out the tractor? Some of the use has been recent so I know that currently everything is operating properly.

Do any of you JD enthusiasts have pointers or tests/checks that I can perform to be relatively confident that the machine is in good condition? I am most concerned with the engine and transmission. Thanks for your help!
 

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First thing you need to do is check and then change the oil and all other fluids. You need to look at every place that has a seal/gasket and make sure it's not leaking. If it sat for years then you run the risk of having seals dry rot etc. Since you think its already been run recently look and see if you see any damp spots on the motor/transmission that would indicate a leak.

Look at the carb and the rest of the fuel system and make it's working correctly.

If this has hydraulic, make sure all the cylinders function like they should and don't leak. Check the hoses for dry rot. Same goes for the PTO.

Check the tires for dry rot as well. I would also lube everything that has a zerk fitting on it. If it has the deck check the deck bearings and the belts.

Basically you need to give the whole thing a very close look. Of course you could always just use it and see what breaks first, that is a method..Sounds like you have a brand new mower. Might want to take a lot of picts so you can post them for restorers to look at in case folks want to know what an "original" tractor looks like.
 

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The Magnificent
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Seals would be a concern to me. I'm not sure what the dealer would have done to prep it for storage other than draining or changing fluids, and possibly fogging the engine. Has is been restored to operating condition already?

Depending on where it was stored, you may want to look for mouse nests.
 

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my father inlaw has this model, I use it often when im at his house, to mow his lawn(gets me out of the house for awhile). he has some large, and steep hills, he bought it new several yrs ago, no problems, it runs great and does an excellent job mowing. power steering is nice, and the 20hp kawasaki seems to have plenty of polwer. as long as everything looks good and everything works as it should (if dealer maintained, it should be fine) You will have a good piece of equipment that will last !
 

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Make you a great mower. I bought 1 the first year JD came out with them. Not sure of year but salesman told me it replaced the bulletproof 318. I owned both and personally think the 318 was more of a workhorse of the 2. Just my .02
 

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First thing I would watch out for is fellow MTF member trying to scoop it up :sidelaugh
Drive it easy for a while and keep a good look out for any leaks,
My guess it will run great right out of the gate.
10 years is about 1/3 of a 318's, life if that helps.:thThumbsU
 

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Pull the plugs, fog the engine and turn over by hand. Drain all of the fluids and replace. If this has been stored inside more than likely the rubber should be in good shape. Run some Seafoam through the carb and fuel system. Look for any leaks. My neighbor just bought a 1998 with less than 400 hours for $1000. It's been trouble free so far and a heck of a tractor on his steep hills. slkpk
 

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I'm on my 2nd 345 and my first one I sold to a neighbor. My 1st 345 had 2160 hrs when I sold it last April. I had a chance to buy a 2005 GX345 that sat in storage barn for 3 years and had 112 hrs on it. These are the best belt tractors JD has ever built.
 

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The Admin from... Nowhere!
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First thing I would watch out for is fellow MTF member trying to scoop it up :sidelaugh
Second thing I'd watch out for would be signs of the "Green Addiction"... like buying several JDs just so you can swap the Deere hood ornament from a junker onto a good tractor! :)
 

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Hi and welcome from a fellow Marylander and very happy 345 owner. Where are you in the tax state? If you are anywhere near Fallston, Harford Co I'd be glad to look at it with you. Not an expert mind you but I have gotten pretty familar with the 345.

Just an offer, NO KATT, I'm not tryting to buy it!!!!!!!!!! :aetsch:
 

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Of course your not Dave:biglaugh::14_6_5:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for the offer Dave. We are in Dunkirk, Southern Maryland so I think that would be a little bit too far for you to travel. And, I am taking a look tomorrow morning. I will let you know how it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Well, I checked out the 345 this morning and am pretty sure that I am going to pull the trigger.:fing32: It has a grand total of 65 hours on it and is in great condition. I checked all of the fluids and also gave it a good thorough looking over. Other than being pretty dusty/dirty it runs well and pretty much seems new. It even has the original battery which I can't believe is still cranking - although I know it did need a charge recently to bring it back to life. I could not see any leaks whatsoever and the fluids all look clear and clean. Once I give it a good cleaning I think it will look and feel like a brand new machine.

The owner bought a thatcher, aerator, and spreader brand new with the tractor. They are still in the original boxes so I'll have to assemble them. And he also has an older JD dump cart that looks rough but should have plenty of years left in it. He is asking $4k for all of it, that seems like a very good deal to me considering it is pretty much all new. Let me know what you think.
 

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I think you will be very happy with the 345. Can't say I've heard any negative comments on the tractor. $4,000 for that deal sounds pretty decent and an equivalent tractor today would set you back about $7,000 or more.

By the way the "Tractor Hunter" would be Glockem!
 
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