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Individually powered tools

Old 12-21-2010, 08:51 AM
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Default Individually powered tools

There are post after post asking about generators, mowers, tillers, snowblowers, etc, etc each with its own engine usually gasoline that has to purchased, maintained, etc all costing money. What happened to the idea of the gravely or old farm tractor where there was only one engine to maintain and keep running with an almost endless number of attachments to do different jobs?

The old gravely's and their new replacements provide(d) the same multipurpose utility to home owners that skid steers and compact tractors provide to contractors and small farmers today yet they do not seem to be very popular. Where do they fall short or why have they fallen out of favor with homeowners?
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Old 12-21-2010, 08:58 AM
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I'd be inclined to say it's a cost factor. The average Joe can not afford an all-in-one tool. And as soon as there is one feature in that all-in-one tool that the buyer doesn't feel they need or they will ever use the price factor really comes into play. It's just a guess.
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Old 12-21-2010, 09:07 AM
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With something like a gravely though you only buy the attachments you want/need/can afford. If you only need to do one think like say cut grass then a push mower would definitely be cheaper but when there are two or three or more uses like mower, till, snow blower then it seems to make sense.
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Old 12-21-2010, 09:20 AM
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My yard tractor was worth approx. 5 and with all of my attachments I'm upwards of 8, but I don't have PTO. A $1,500 lawn tractor would cut the grass and pull a small trailor, but that's about all it will do.
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Old 12-21-2010, 09:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Garett View Post
A $1,500 lawn tractor would cut the grass and pull a small trailor, but that's about all it will do.

Thats correct my neighbor has a Kubota lawn tractor and he bought a few different attachments for it one being a plow I said to him in a big storm thats not gonna move any real snow he's like nah I got the tire chains I'm good well last year we got hit with like 22" of snow he's out there and he plowed about 10' and then complete stop his tires werent slipping but it didnt have enough torque to push the heavy wet snow I was out with him with my snowblower and i said Rob hows it going he goes can i rent your snowblower from you
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Old 12-21-2010, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Garett View Post
My yard tractor was worth approx. 5 and with all of my attachments I'm upwards of 8, but I don't have PTO. A $1,500 lawn tractor would cut the grass and pull a small trailor, but that's about all it will do.
Does your tractor have a hydraulic pump on it to run a hydraulic pto?
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Old 12-21-2010, 11:05 AM
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Cost is the major factor as stated above.

Tractor 1500
Snow Blower 1000
Generator 600
Tiller??? Not sure everybody needs that
So Figure $3500 all in

You Can't even get a tractor for twice that with a PTO Plus all the attachements are a grand or more and you have to sotre it. Unless you have 4+ acres and a barn and enjoy working with stuff it doesn't make sense!
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Old 12-21-2010, 11:20 AM
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I was thinking specifically of the 2 wheeled tractors like the old gravely L8 or a modern equivalent. Not a riding tractor which I agree is not practical for most.
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Old 12-21-2010, 12:19 PM
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I have a riding mower which can accept a snowblower attachment or plow blade.
The snowblower attachment is more than the cost of a dedicated snow blower, and requires me to take the mower deck off, mount the snow attachment, keep the mower battery charged all winter, and trudge out to the shed in the back yard every time it snows.

The dedicated snowblower does a better job, is easier to maneuver, easer to repair/replace, and can stay right in the garage between the two cars. Also its electric start doesn't require a battery.
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Old 12-21-2010, 03:07 PM
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Originally Posted by jobowker View Post
Also its electric start doesn't require a battery.
Does it plug into a 110v outlet?
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Old 12-22-2010, 07:52 AM
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Originally Posted by bsmit24 View Post
Does your tractor have a hydraulic pump on it to run a hydraulic pto?
Yes sir.......hmmm, interesting, never thought of that.
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Old 12-22-2010, 07:58 AM
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I'll go one step farther. I've always wondered, why not just make a removable engine? How hard would it be to "unbolt" a 5 hp engine from your lawnmower and bolt it into your generator, snowblower, tiller, etc, etc. Only catch seems to be that some of those applications today are verticle shafts and some horizontal, but I'm sure the lawnmower guys could get with the program if they tried.
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Old 12-22-2010, 08:07 AM
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A 5 hp Flot is going to do much for snow removal or tilling the earth, one pretty much needs at least double that to be in the game (at the junior level).

For whatever it's worth, I'm packing 27 ponies.
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Old 12-22-2010, 08:16 AM
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I have a BCS rototiller that is able to switch attachments withits PTO. It has a 8 horse motor. You can get blowers, snowplows, concrete sweepers, trimmers, mulchers, scissor-cut mowers, grass mowers. It even has a sulkie for it to ride to my upper lot. I abuse the hell out of this thing and it is flawless. No belts, just stainless gears.
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Old 12-22-2010, 08:26 AM
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On a smaller scale, I have a Ryobi "head unit", with multiple attachments that I bought when I had a MUCH smaller property then I do now. I have a string trimmer, tiller - which works great, 2 blowers/Vac, an edger, shrub trimmer and snow thrower. ALL of the attachments work great, including the snow thrower at 12" wide for doing the steps.

That's in addition to the snowblower for the driveway.
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Old 12-22-2010, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Flot View Post
I'll go one step farther. I've always wondered, why not just make a removable engine? How hard would it be to "unbolt" a 5 hp engine from your lawnmower and bolt it into your generator, snowblower, tiller, etc, etc. Only catch seems to be that some of those applications today are verticle shafts and some horizontal, but I'm sure the lawnmower guys could get with the program if they tried.
Essentially that is what I am talking about but instead of moving an engine around the engine is bolted to its own transmission and wheels. Like the BCS setup mentioned above.
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Old 12-22-2010, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by jobowker View Post
I have a riding mower which can accept a snowblower attachment or plow blade.
The snowblower attachment is more than the cost of a dedicated snow blower, and requires me to take the mower deck off, mount the snow attachment, keep the mower battery charged all winter, and trudge out to the shed in the back yard every time it snows.

The dedicated snowblower does a better job, is easier to maneuver, easer to repair/replace, and can stay right in the garage between the two cars. Also its electric start doesn't require a battery.
~ heavens forbid you have to go outside to deal with the snow....that must be a painful walk back to the shed. ~

I have to do the same thing with my setup, remove the mower deck and install the snowblower....eh, I've got it down to a little over a half hour each way. What I do like about it is, I get a chance to properly inspect, clean and maintain each unit before it goes away for the off season.

I've got wide open space to maneuver my 4' wide snowblower with ease.
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Old 12-22-2010, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Garett View Post
~ heavens forbid you have to go outside to deal with the snow....that must be a painful walk back to the shed. ~

I have to do the same thing with my setup, remove the mower deck and install the snowblower....eh, I've got it down to a little over a half hour each way. What I do like about it is, I get a chance to properly inspect, clean and maintain each unit before it goes away for the off season.

I've got wide open space to maneuver my 4' wide snowblower with ease.
Critical difference right there.. I'm lazier than you are.

And to whomever asked about the electric start, yes it's just a 110v outlet on it.
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Old 12-22-2010, 01:58 PM
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Over all, I'm in agreement with you but also consider the time it takes to change attachments. If you can afford more than one "power base" you can transition more efficiently from task to task, or sub-process to sub-process. Additionally only one power source means all work stops if you have a mechanical isue.
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Old 12-22-2010, 02:16 PM
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I would think it would be kind of like a Shop Mate, or a motor sailor. The worst of both worlds.

Last edited by CONCHY CRACKER; 12-22-2010 at 03:51 PM.
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