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Hi everybody!
I have a 1996'ish Simplicity Broadmoor (model #1692414) 14 hp V-twin, 38" deck with Turbovac and also have mulch kit setup. I am the original owner and living in NW Wisconsin.

As seems to be the case on these tractors...the HydroGear tranny (311-0750) is getting tired. Last year I pulled it out and replaced the oil (did not open it up). The performance is much better but still not good enough where I can pull a roller or aerator. I can still mow with it and use the Turbovac but I miss not being able to roll, sweep or generally pull anything behind me. I have 1.5 acres of actual grass to mow and towards the end of mowing the tranny is starting to "protest".

Like for many of us, money is tight and I really can't afford a new tractor right now. I only use it for summer yard work...no winter snowblowing. The tractor looks and runs great! I really hate to get rid of it!

I called a couple of local shops that repair HydroGear units. One said to not spend the money on a repair....buy a new one. The other was non-committal as to giving me even a ballpark range of repair dollars.

So I guess some of my questions are:

1. Anybody have firsthand knowledge of how these units perform after being rebuilt?
2. Cost range of rebuilding?
3. GOOD regional sources for rebuilding?
4. If I buy a new unit, who has the best prices?
5. In your opinion, should I even bother putting money into a 17 yr old tractor?

Sorry for the long post...this whole deal has me quite perplexed!

Thanks!
 

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I can't help you with your queries, but I'd probably keep the machine if it's in good general shape. A replacement machine will cost a lot more than a hydro (if you can get a new hydro).
If you are mechanically inclined, you may be able to get a rebuild kit and do the work yourself, saving a fair amount of money.
 
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