B2401DT

Tractor Beamer

New member
Nov 18, 2020
7
6
3
Michigan
Hi everyone,
I'm thinking of picking up a B2401 as a first tractor. I need it to mow 1 acre of very nice irrigated lawn, plow my asphalt driveway, and help me develop and maintain an adjacent 5 acre parcel that we are going to eventually build on.

I'm leaning towards this model because it's affordable, simple, and has gear drive. I found what a feel is a decent deal on one with the loader.

I'm hoping to get the new hybrid tires as I think they would be a good compromise between not tearing up my lawn and offering good traction in the snow.

As far as the mower goes, would I be better served with a mid mount or a PTO finish mower? The dealer told me this tractor, to run a mid mount, would require a mid PTO to be installed. I thought this model has a mid PTO from the factory?

Does this sound like a good tractor for my needs?

Thanks for any opinions.
 

JimmyJazz

Well-known member

Equipment
B2601
Aug 8, 2020
836
468
63
Pittsburgh, Pa
Hi everyone,
I'm thinking of picking up a B2401 as a first tractor. I need it to mow 1 acre of very nice irrigated lawn, plow my asphalt driveway, and help me develop and maintain an adjacent 5 acre parcel that we are going to eventually build on.

I'm leaning towards this model because it's affordable, simple, and has gear drive. I found what a feel is a decent deal on one with the loader.

I'm hoping to get the new hybrid tires as I think they would be a good compromise between not tearing up my lawn and offering good traction in the snow.

As far as the mower goes, would I be better served with a mid mount or a PTO finish mower? The dealer told me this tractor, to run a mid mount, would require a mid PTO to be installed. I thought this model has a mid PTO from the factory?

Does this sound like a good tractor for my needs?

Thanks for any opinions.
Your best move in my opinion would to buy one with the mower and loader already installed. There are hundreds available at any given time within a couple of hours drive of most metropolitan areas. Check Craigslist and Tractorhouse. Don't be afraid to make an offer suitable to your circumstance over the phone before driving all over. There is no shame in having an offer rejected. Thats what I would do.
 
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PaulL

Well-known member

Equipment
B2601
Jul 17, 2017
1,273
487
83
NZ
I assume the B2401 is new, since it's a model that's only been out recently.

The B2401 is a "stripper" model - they've left some features off to save money. Namely, the mid-PTO, the HST, and a few other things I forget.

If you want to mow with a MMM, then get a B2601 or B2301 instead. I'd also closely look at an HST, for the tasks you mention I personally would find an HST much better (especially mowing, but probably plowing too).

In terms of MMM or RFM, it's horses for courses. Messicks have a good video on it on Youtube. It really comes down to:
1. RFM is usually rear discharge. Question if you're fine with that on your lawn
2. MMM is usually side discharge, or bagger (I hate baggers). With my side discharge I usually discharge to the centre then go over it again on the next circuit, I get almost no visible clippings at the end
3. RFM and MMM handle quite differently, for a less experienced user (and, dare I say it, if your wife is going to mow occasionally) the MMM is much easier to get close to things
4. RFM lets you push it under trees and the like backwards, MMM is harder if you have overhanging trees
5. RFM tend to be a bit wider, and a bit heavier duty. With those 5 acres, if you might want to mow them, RFM is probably the way to go as it will tolerate mowing some land that is close to pasture better than a MMM
6. Also consider a flail if you need a dual duty mower - that can do your lawn and also the 5 acres. It doesn't do either job perfectly, but it does both passably

If your tidy up on your 5 acres involves a lot of loader or grapple work, you'll find an HST easier to deal with.
 

PoTreeBoy

Well-known member
Lifetime Member

Equipment
L35 Ford 3930
Mar 24, 2020
1,067
417
83
WestTn/NoMs
I'm pretty much with PaulL. The B model is the right range, but I don't think gear transmission is what you want. Unless it's synchronized, shifting it's a PITA. The Kubota site isn't specific. And the PTO on the gear model is transmission driven, meaning when you clutch to change gears the PTO coasts down. And the mower doesn't start until the tractor starts moving, which tends to leave unmowed spots.
The 2401 will get the job done, but you'll be wishing you had something else. Have you considered used?
 

Tractor Beamer

New member
Nov 18, 2020
7
6
3
Michigan
Well I'm bummed that you guys think the 2401 wouldn't be an ideal choice. Back to the drawing board I guess. I have checked used and there weren't any that I could find locally, or if there were the prices seemed too high. Plus financing wouldn't be as good.

Thanks guys for the detailed responses.
 

El Jefe

Member

Equipment
B2401
May 18, 2020
37
14
8
Santa Cruz, CA
The B2401
I assume the B2401 is new, since it's a model that's only been out recently.

The B2401 is a "stripper" model - they've left some features off to save money. Namely, the mid-PTO, the HST, and a few other things I forget.
This is incorrect, the B2401 comes with a mid PTO. The comments about the PTO being driven by a single stage clutch are correct. With this arrangement every time you clutch you will stop your mower. This is great for field mowing but probably not great for lawn mowing. If your 1 acre lawn is open like a field, grab a RFM and it will be a great setup. If your 1 acre has trees or structures to mow around the gear drive might not be optimal. In that case I'd pick up a used zero turn and use the B2401 for tractor stuff. If you like a gear drive the B2401 is a great tractor . I have one and I wouldn't hesitate to buy another.
 
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jbolt001

Member

Equipment
B2401, LA435, BB1254, Qick Hitch, Straw Rake, Debris Forks
Jul 13, 2020
55
34
18
California / Oregon
I also have a B2410. As El Jefe pointed out it does come with a mid PTO. I have 1.5 acres of irrigated grass but I don't use it to mow. I have a 30 year old riding mower that does that just fine.

I do a 50/50 split between loader work and ground engaging work with the 3-point. The non-synchro transmission takes some getting used to for loader work. It took me a couple of days of loader work to get my rhythm with the clutch/transmission. I have driven a lot of non-synchro tractors so it was not a concern for me.

The foot throttle /brake peddle placement makes it easy to heal/toe between the two which make shifting on the fly possible. It does require more clutch work with the loader so time will tell how long the clutch will last. Replacing the clutch is a bit of a job so something to consider if you do your own service work or not. If most of my work was loader work a HST would be a better choice.

For ground engaging work or moving things around the transmission is not an issue, works great. My wife has no trouble with it either.

I have the R14 tires. I had ordered the R4's but it was delivered with the R14's. My dealer told me to use them for a while and if I did not like them they would change them. So far the have been great with our soil conditions. The tractor needs good ballast. I have bio-ballast in the rear tires and am planning on adding wheel weights.

While I am not a fan of the HST whine I think It does not bother most people.

The price point is also very attractive and you get a lot of machine for the dollar. My B2401 w/QA loader, two rear implements and a set of pallet forks was less than a HST.

Good luck on your search.
 

Tractor Beamer

New member
Nov 18, 2020
7
6
3
Michigan
Thanks for the input jbolt. I'm still shopping and weighing the options. I was quoted 13.6k for the 2401 with QA loader and 54" bucket and 17.8k for the 2601 with the same set up. For that savings I could get a darn good dedicated mower. But still I'm not sure if I'd regret the gear drive since I plan on doing a lot of loader work. The same dealer also has the L2501 HST for 18.8k so I'm also considering that. Safe to say I wouldn't be mowing with that however with how heavy it is.
 

jbolt001

Member

Equipment
B2401, LA435, BB1254, Qick Hitch, Straw Rake, Debris Forks
Jul 13, 2020
55
34
18
California / Oregon
Thanks for the input jbolt. I'm still shopping and weighing the options. I was quoted 13.6k for the 2401 with QA loader and 54" bucket and 17.8k for the 2601 with the same set up. For that savings I could get a darn good dedicated mower. But still I'm not sure if I'd regret the gear drive since I plan on doing a lot of loader work. The same dealer also has the L2501 HST for 18.8k so I'm also considering that. Safe to say I wouldn't be mowing with that however with how heavy it is.
That is a fantastic price for a 2401 w/loader & bucket, about 15-16% off MSRP.

I hummed and hawed about getting a little larger L model but the way my property is the B series is a perfect fit size wise. Plus my budget was about 18k. It would be nice to have a little heavier machine for some of the ground work. The 2401 will spin the tires pretty easy w/o any additional rear weight, even with the bio ballast in the tires. I will be adding wheel weights. Tons of torque in the lower gear ranges.

If you think you will do a lot of loader work the HST might be a better fit. I would suggest you test drive one if possible. On the 2301 that I was able to test drive (no 2401s on the lot) I didn't care for the fwd/rev rocker peddle. Ergonomically it was not comfortable for me or my wife.
 

jbolt001

Member

Equipment
B2401, LA435, BB1254, Qick Hitch, Straw Rake, Debris Forks
Jul 13, 2020
55
34
18
California / Oregon
Was that price for the 2401 in line with what you guys are seeing or paying?
I think my 2401w/loader & bucket was $14.6k. I purchased the 2401, a BB1254 box blade, PFl2042 pallet forks and a RB1560 rear blade for $16.2k. I purchased in July. Inventory was low and not much dealing on price. Paying cash it was 10-11% off all items plus they threw in the bio-ballast and delivery which was 40 miles away.
 

El Jefe

Member

Equipment
B2401
May 18, 2020
37
14
8
Santa Cruz, CA
I think my 2401w/loader & bucket was $14.6k. I purchased the 2401, a BB1254 box blade, PFl2042 pallet forks and a RB1560 rear blade for $16.2k. I purchased in July. Inventory was low and not much dealing on price. Paying cash it was 10-11% off all items plus they threw in the bio-ballast and delivery which was 40 miles away.
My 2401 was just under $17k with a bb1254, ssqa loader, pfl2042 financed 0% for 84 months. Your price is fantastic. Like jbolt the b series was particularly well suited to my property or I would have definitely gone with the L2501 for the small price difference.
 

DS524

New member

Equipment
None (yet!)
Dec 29, 2020
22
1
3
Mid Atlantic
I also have a B2410. As El Jefe pointed out it does come with a mid PTO. I have 1.5 acres of irrigated grass but I don't use it to mow. I have a 30 year old riding mower that does that just fine.

I do a 50/50 split between loader work and ground engaging work with the 3-point. The non-synchro transmission takes some getting used to for loader work. It took me a couple of days of loader work to get my rhythm with the clutch/transmission. I have driven a lot of non-synchro tractors so it was not a concern for me.

The foot throttle /brake peddle placement makes it easy to heal/toe between the two which make shifting on the fly possible. It does require more clutch work with the loader so time will tell how long the clutch will last. Replacing the clutch is a bit of a job so something to consider if you do your own service work or not. If most of my work was loader work a HST would be a better choice.

For ground engaging work or moving things around the transmission is not an issue, works great. My wife has no trouble with it either.

I have the R14 tires. I had ordered the R4's but it was delivered with the R14's. My dealer told me to use them for a while and if I did not like them they would change them. So far the have been great with our soil conditions. The tractor needs good ballast. I have bio-ballast in the rear tires and am planning on adding wheel weights.

While I am not a fan of the HST whine I think It does not bother most people.

The price point is also very attractive and you get a lot of machine for the dollar. My B2401 w/QA loader, two rear implements and a set of pallet forks was less than a HST.

Good luck on your search.
First post here. Looking at a B2401DT or B2601 (1st tractor) so good to read the experience of someone who has one. I've done a lot of research/visiting dealers up to this point and am 99% settled on a B01 (w/FEL & BH). A BX is probably big enough for my property (if subcompact I'd actually go w/a 1025R) but I really want something just a tad larger and it seems like a clear cut difference to me that in this frame size that the B01's beat out a 2025R in "real tractor" features and capacities while the JD excels in convenience/appearance features (exception being Kubota's single point hydraulic connector).

The hard part for me is I don't know exactly what I'll be doing. I will be mowing w/it (mid mount) but don't anticipate doing a tremendous amount of that. A small riding mower would accomplish what I need to do on my property but mowing is the justification to my wife that I "need" a tractor, lol). I do have several other projects I want to do on my my property that'll require the FEL & BH but he only way I can justify a tractor of this magnitude is to do some "work for hire" with it which I anticipate will be mostly on smaller residential lots but just not exactly sure what it'll entail. I shut my old business down so need something to do and expect I'll have more work than I can handle or want.

I'm going to go test drive one of each (or a B2301). Messick's has a couple B2401's in stock. I saw/sat on a B2601 at my local dealer and as soon as I saw it I knew it was exactly the frame size I wanted (I'd already been to the JD dealer & drove a 1025R but they didn't have a 2025R) . Wasn't crazy about my local Kubota dealership however. There are a couple others closer than Messick's but the salesman there has been extremely helpful and they're only 90 minutes away. One closer dealer I checked w/ doesn't have any B01's in stock.

I agree w/you on the loader work and please correct me if I'm wrong but it seems like the shifter was set up to be optimized (best as possible) for doing loader work. It also seems that the gear drive would be able to get into a pile with less bucket finesse than a HST and that one could effectively load the front axle for better traction as the bucket goes in. Seems with some practice that while the HST would be better for extensive loader work that the gear drive would be just fine.

For me, it's not a cost issue per se. I just think I'll like the gear drive better. The salesman thinks I'm nuts for considering it and that may turn out to be the case. I like my manual transmission cars & truck. Not only actually shifting them but the control it allows. Honestly, the 2401 looks fun to drive (there's a great initial test drive by Kubota tech Ryan Lynch on YT). Like you, I'm not crazy about the treadle pedal although everyone says you get used to it but that's an added "benefit" of the gear drive as is the reduced maintenance & fuel cost (until it needs a clutch but I'm super easy on clutches).

I think the confusion on the mid-PTO is because the B2401DTN (narrow model) does not come w/a mid PTO. I'm still trying to figure out all the differences between the HST models & the gear drive. The B2401 uses the same engine as the B2601 but it's either de-tuned or is being measured differently (brochure says all being measured by same SAE std. but on Neil Messick's vid he implied that was not the case). So far it seems like the seat, lack of cruise/tilt, and maybe the ball pivots on the swing arms. The seat & swing arms can easily be upgraded if desired. I also see the gpm of the hydraulics is less and there's a reduced 3pt. hitch capacity but the brochure makes no mention of reduced FEL capacity which seems strange. When building one on Kubota's site, there are also rear hydraulic & lighing options listed for the HST's that are not listed for the gear drive. Surprisingly, neither lists an optional 3rd function valve for the FEL.
 

David's 4701dt

New member

Equipment
L4701 gear drive /kubota sidekick4m
Dec 27, 2020
6
1
3
Alabama
The b2401 was mainly built to fill in a gap for orchard and grape farmers and small acre type farms that require a small gear drive tractor for pulling carts. some tillage and other chores on those type farms and two meet a more affordable price point but it would make a great little tractor for small acre farms.
My opinion is do what you think is best i love my gear drive l4701dt
And all my neighbors have hydrostatic
I have plowed there gardens more times when there hydrostatic trans get to hot but im old school anyway .
Not to take away from or steer you away from hydrostatic . There all good tractors
 
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DS524

New member

Equipment
None (yet!)
Dec 29, 2020
22
1
3
Mid Atlantic
Thanks! I'm kinda old school too and tend to go against the grain. Bought a new Diesel pickup once w/an automatic& sold w/in a year. It only cost me the payments. Didn't put anything down & sold it for the loan balance. I missed the control and was bored driving it. Can't even buy a new HD pickup anymore w/a manual but given the choice I still would so that's where I am vs. that market.

My understanding was the B2401DTN was intended for exactly the purpose you mentioned wrt orchards, vineyards, etc. (hence no mid-PTO). Maybe at that point to transfer that engineering to to the B01 Frame was easy & the B2401DT, basically as you said, was intended to fill a niche & compete with some of the lesser brands that did still offer a small compact w/a gear drive. I wish they hadn't de-spec'd the features - It's stuff that didn't amount to anything from their cost standpoint. It should probably really be a B2420 but they did away w/the B20 series and I guess didn'twant to muddy the model lines anymore than they already are having just cleaned it up with new LX replacing the B50's.

It won't take much to steer me away from the HST:). I would definitely be in a very small minority buying a gear drive for my intended usage but I think I'd really like it and would actually prefer it to a HST. It'll be hard to tell just based on a short test drive @ the dealership esp. having never owned one, but worst case is I get a year or two into it and figure out I made the wrong choice & sell it to buy an HST. Not the end of the world & all my attachments would still be fine. Heck, even the MMM, BH, & FEL are the same if a small farm wanted it and only needed the 3pt.
 
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jbolt001

Member

Equipment
B2401, LA435, BB1254, Qick Hitch, Straw Rake, Debris Forks
Jul 13, 2020
55
34
18
California / Oregon
For me the tractor is a tool. I don't need the bells a whistles such as arm rests and tilt steering.

The only awkward thing I find with the shifter is the loader lever and gear shifter are somewhat close to each other. I occasionally grab the loader lever when when shifting fwd/rev-rev/fwd. I'm sure more seat time will help.

I wouldn't read too much into the HP ratings. The HST has a different hydraulic pump system with a little higher gpm due to the transmission differences. The loader lift rating is the same as the B2601. The 3 point hydraulics on the B2401 is a completely different design than the B2301/B2601. The load rating difference is about 100 lbs less on the B2401.

The B2601 base weight is about 100 lbs heavier. The B2401 needs additional weight with the gear drive. Even with bio-ballast in the rear tires, with the FEL on I can easily spin the tires when scooping. FWD drive helps but I prefer to leave it in 2wd unless the terrain calls for it. They recommend having a heavy implement on the back when doing loader work which is fine but sometimes the situation does not allow for it. I also prefer to have un-sprung weight on the wheels vs. the extra weight on the axel. I plan on adding 200-300 lbs to the rear wheels in the future.

Let us know how the test drive goes.
 
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PaulL

Well-known member

Equipment
B2601
Jul 17, 2017
1,273
487
83
NZ
If you're working around other people's properties a lot, particularly in small spaces, I'd personally go HST. The ability to creep backwards and forwards is a lot better, I always feel like you get more control. With a gear drive you have to slip the clutch or go in a very low gear to get control (which then means changing gear to speed up). Remember that a tractor gear drive is not like a car or truck, usually there are no synchros (stop to change gear), and the clutches are heavy and harder to work. In my opinion the default should be HST, gear drive is only if you have a specific purpose that rewards gear drive (and that usually means you are doing a task where you need power on the ground, but your tractor has more traction than HP - i.e. the increased HP on the ground of a gear drive will actually turn into more work instead of more wheel spin). There aren't a lot of small tractors that are HP limited for ground engaging tasks.
 

DS524

New member

Equipment
None (yet!)
Dec 29, 2020
22
1
3
Mid Atlantic
For me the tractor is a tool. I don't need the bells a whistles such as arm rests and tilt steering.

The only awkward thing I find with the shifter is the loader lever and gear shifter are somewhat close to each other. I occasionally grab the loader lever when when shifting fwd/rev-rev/fwd. I'm sure more seat time will help.

I wouldn't read too much into the HP ratings. The HST has a different hydraulic pump system with a little higher gpm due to the transmission differences. The loader lift rating is the same as the B2601. The 3 point hydraulics on the B2401 is a completely different design than the B2301/B2601. The load rating difference is about 100 lbs less on the B2401.

The B2601 base weight is about 100 lbs heavier. The B2401 needs additional weight with the gear drive. Even with bio-ballast in the rear tires, with the FEL on I can easily spin the tires when scooping. FWD drive helps but I prefer to leave it in 2wd unless the terrain calls for it. They recommend having a heavy implement on the back when doing loader work which is fine but sometimes the situation does not allow for it. I also prefer to have un-sprung weight on the wheels vs. the extra weight on the axel. I plan on adding 200-300 lbs to the rear wheels in the future.

Let us know how the test drive goes.
Thanks - The FEL rating was a concern despite the literature showing it the same when I saw that the GPM/3PT was lower. Based on the very limited B2401 video footage on YT I can see where the shifter proximity could cause what you described but I agree it'll become 2nd nature after awhile. It seems they they tried to design it to make loader work easier.

I wasn't too concerned about the HP (a B2301 would do what I need) but is nice that it comes w/the B2601 (D1105) engine regardless. I can see where the armrest/tilt might be nice if spending many hours on the machine (yes, it is a tool) but certainly not necessary and that cruise wouldn't be be feasible on a gear drive. IMHO & if I (finally) sorta understand Kubota's model numbering system if it's a B01 it should all the (possible) features of the other B01's. It could also be that tilt is integrated into the same steering column w/cruise and isn't feasible in which case, how much cost difference is there in the seat.

I did notice the difference in weight as well so yes, good points on the need to add weight. Weight hanging off the back is seemingly more effective but good point on the unsprung vs. loading/excess wear on the axle. Wheel weights and juice will be in order. I'm hoping to not have to change tires (thinking bar/turf) although the std. R1's on the B2301/B2401 narrow the machine up considerably if I have to get through any narrowly gated fences so I was considering getting them and then an extra set of wheels with either R3 Turf or the Bar/Turf.

Can't wait for the test drive! Will definitely report back.
 

DS524

New member

Equipment
None (yet!)
Dec 29, 2020
22
1
3
Mid Atlantic
If you're working around other people's properties a lot, particularly in small spaces, I'd personally go HST. The ability to creep backwards and forwards is a lot better, I always feel like you get more control. With a gear drive you have to slip the clutch or go in a very low gear to get control (which then means changing gear to speed up). Remember that a tractor gear drive is not like a car or truck, usually there are no synchros (stop to change gear), and the clutches are heavy and harder to work. In my opinion the default should be HST, gear drive is only if you have a specific purpose that rewards gear drive (and that usually means you are doing a task where you need power on the ground, but your tractor has more traction than HP - i.e. the increased HP on the ground of a gear drive will actually turn into more work instead of more wheel spin). There aren't a lot of small tractors that are HP limited for ground engaging tasks.
Agree on all your points regarding the advantages of HST for my application:). My heart wants a gear drive but my head says HST. I was/am aware of the non-synchro issue and that it would mean a lot more shifting but I think I'm OK w/that. It might get old too:). It'll be hard to determine that on a test drive but I'm hoping test driving them side by side will make it a pretty clear cut decision one way or the other.
 

PaulL

Well-known member

Equipment
B2601
Jul 17, 2017
1,273
487
83
NZ
Agree on all your points regarding the advantages of HST for my application:). My heart wants a gear drive but my head says HST. I was/am aware of the non-synchro issue and that it would mean a lot more shifting but I think I'm OK w/that. It might get old too:). It'll be hard to determine that on a test drive but I'm hoping test driving them side by side will make it a pretty clear cut decision one way or the other.
To be fair, my HST experience is largely newer machines, my gear driven experience older machines. No doubt newer gear machines are nicer to drive. To me it's not the shifting, no different than driving a manual car. It's the stopping to shift, or double declutching (if you can even do that on a tractor), and the fact that I often creep my tractor into small spaces, and I hate the thought of riding the clutch to do that. The HST pedal on my B2601 is quite stiff, and gives my knee a bit of a hard time. I'd imagine the clutch would be worse, but neither are good.

The cruise on my B2601 appears useless. I wouldn't use that as a deciding factor. I can't get it to lock in at full speed, it always runs a bit slower than you set it, and even mowing on the large field I mow it's never flat enough to run constant speed anyway, so a bit of a waste of time. Maybe on the road, but even then I'm dubious.

The tilt steering is kinda nice, but the lever for it is in a stupid place so you kick it every time you get on and off. I assume it's made for people with a large belly who put the wheel up every time they get off, then readjust when they get on.

In NZ we don't get the single lever manifold for the FEL. I really wish I had it, I was waiting for it and the Kubota rep in NZ said they're choosing not to import it, they think NZers wouldn't pay extra for it (apparently it's $500-600 extra on the wholesale cost). I curse every time I taket he loader off, the pioneer couplers are in an inconvenient place and one in particular is sticky and hard to get on. I graze my hands if I don't wear gloves, and if I wear gloves I get hydraulic fluid on them so they slip and I can't get enough grip to push them one. It all sucks. The single lever is worth it if that's not on the B2401 (you definitely want the FEL off when mowing if you can).

You'll also want the quick attach bucket (SSQA). Because you need forks and/or a grapple. If it's the grapple you need, you'll need third function. I have a pin on bucket (again, apparently NZers are too cheap to ever want a quick attach, so they don't import them). It's a real pain to switch bucket for forks, but I can't easily take the FEL off with the forks on (you can't crowd it to lift the wheels, as the forks are folding). I'm waiting for the pin-on quick attach, but it has to be special ordered and for some reason my dealer finds that to be complex and/or hard, and still hasn't done it for me.

Usual question on BH. Are you sure? I'd personally like one but I already know I don't have enough use for one. I had Dad's mini-ex for 8 months, and hardly used it, and that was when I had a lot of excavator type work. Now that we're done with building the tractor shed I only have the occasional hole to dig, and they're small enough I can dig with a spade quicker than i could put a backhoe on.