Buying help - 1995 L35 or 2008 L39

CdnSldr.ret

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Good day folks, I can’t tell you guys (and gals) how much help this forum has been in my research.

I’m just about to complete the purchase on a 153acre vacant parcel of land. A couple very small clearings and the rest is heavy forest. In anticipation I’ve been searching for a TLB to help with land development. I’ve also researched construction backhoes and mini excavators.
My location is fairly rural and next to no selection of used equipment, but I’ve got no problem driving 20+ hours for the right unit. It will make a thorough inspection very difficult, unless I can find a credible mechanic in the area.

I’ve located a 1995 L35 TLB a distance away. Approx 2855hrs. Extras include bolt on forks, a complete new-in-box cab with heat, new tire chains, industrial tires (new front spares) and a 27.5kw PTO generator. The seller has negotiated himself down to $20k CAD ($15,700 usd). I’m confident I could get a few thousand more off. This tractor is about a 20 hour drive one way. 8F995603-DFC7-47C7-8605-08B3924FD94B.jpeg B7A38452-E8B9-482B-BAC4-6EEF3F1CF10C.jpeg CE905DB7-2487-427C-8363-C51F5057B3E7.jpeg


My second option is a 2008 L39 TLB with around 750hrs. It’s looks to be in very good shape. Only extras are 2 rear hyd aux circuits. Seller is asking $37,500 cad ($29,500 usd). This tractor is around a 17hr one way drive.
798A810D-B039-41BF-A87C-70F68518CF5F.jpeg AC0CAD65-4BB5-4D61-BE55-4656E9C53336.jpeg 87C27CC5-0911-454B-AF26-B31BEFFC114F.jpeg 51A2D608-C442-498A-8C7B-3AF951273596.jpeg 6C6C4FF3-471B-48A4-A0AC-34E80D7CEEC7.jpeg

Both are private sales.

My budget is around $30k cad ($23600usd). Both tractors have been for sale for a bit of time. I’d very much love the L39 and feel I could negotiate his price closer to 30k.

Any input on these prices?

cheers,
 

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PaulL

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I don't have any insight into the Canadian market, and as you know the used market is all over the place everywhere at the moment. But from looking at the photos, the L39 is a much better looking machine, and it has a lot fewer hours. I would expect that the L35 would often need fixing, the L39 would rarely need fixing. I can't comment on your budget and your financial circumstances, but for me I'd go with a machine that would pretty much always work when I wanted to use it.

I assume the rear "pilots" would be rear hydraulic ports, although that seems a little unusual on a TLB.

Buy once, cry once, as they say. That's a good machine.
 
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CdnSldr.ret

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I don't have any insight into the Canadian market, and as you know the used market is all over the place everywhere at the moment. But from looking at the photos, the L39 is a much better looking machine, and it has a lot fewer hours. I would expect that the L35 would often need fixing, the L39 would rarely need fixing. I can't comment on your budget and your financial circumstances, but for me I'd go with a machine that would pretty much always work when I wanted to use it.

I assume the rear "pilots" would be rear hydraulic ports, although that seems a little unusual on a TLB.

Buy once, cry once, as they say. That's a good machine.
Yes, 2 rear aux hookups.

I certainly know what the proper choice is!
I would be adding a rear thumb (hyd if possible) and getting a grapple for the front. Later would be a box blade and a flail mower.

I’m slightly worried that the land purchase will go over budget, hence why I’m also looking at cheaper options.

I’m sure the extra few HP of the L39 would really help out a flail.

There is also an Mx4800 with a loader/backhoe that’s available for around $32,500. Around 1100hrs. I’d like to steer clear of the tier 4 engines, and I’m not a fan of how much pto hp the hst eats.
 

JimmyJazz

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You mention your cash outlay budget but have you considered the economics of buying a new unit and making payments at 0% interest over I think 84 months. If you factor in the residual value of the tractor it might make more sense. I have alway bought used equipment and spent countless hours fixing the stuff. After looking at used units for over a year I bought a new B2601 a few months ago.I didn't have to finance it but chose to given the attractive terms. It runs like a top, starts every time and may last me the rest of my life. If I had to sell it tomorrow the financial hit would not wreck the balance sheet as there is an active secondary or used market for it. I am a big believer in buying used but all considered bought new. Reporting from Pittsburgh PA
"The Paris of Appalachia"
 

CdnSldr.ret

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You mention your cash outlay budget but have you considered the economics of buying a new unit and making payments at 0% interest over I think 84 months. If you factor in the residual value of the tractor it might make more sense. I have alway bought used equipment and spent countless hours fixing the stuff. After looking at used units for over a year I bought a new B2601 a few months ago.I didn't have to finance it but chose to given the attractive terms. It runs like a top, starts every time and may last me the rest of my life. If I had to sell it tomorrow the financial hit would not wreck the balance sheet as there is an active secondary or used market for it. I am a big believer in buying used but all considered bought new. Reporting from Pittsburgh PA
"The Paris of Appalachia"
It’s slightly different up here. Max term is 72 months. I went in and got an L3560 and L4760 priced out. They come in at between $800-$1000 CAD per month.

Development on the property will be slow going and as we can afford it, so our monthly budget plays an important role.
That being said, I was also a heavy equipment mechanic in the army for 12 years. I certainly dont what to be doing repairs all the time, but should the need arise, I could manage.
Also, sales tax here is 13% which is why I’m avoiding dealers like the plague. That works out to over 10 grand on the L4760.
 

PaulL

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I would be adding a rear thumb (hyd if possible) and getting a grapple for the front. Later would be a box blade and a flail mower.

I’m sure the extra few HP of the L39 would really help out a flail.
I thought some of those TLB models were quite hard to take the backhoe off? I thought the L39 etc were basically construction machines - they're made to be used hard on work sites, and often end up in rental fleets. But they also I thought didn't have quick attach loaders and back hoes. It sounds like you have lots of 3ph work - make sure you're getting the 3ph parts, and that it's sensible/possible to take the hoe on and off easily.

There is also an Mx4800 with a loader/backhoe that’s available for around $32,500. Around 1100hrs. I’d like to steer clear of the tier 4 engines, and I’m not a fan of how much pto hp the hst eats.
Wow. I'd have gone absolutely the opposite. The MX is quite a bit more machine, the backhoe probably comes on and off easier, and that's less cost than the nicer L.

HST is a magic thing for anything other than field work, and I believe the HP lost is mostly unnoticeable in real life. You lose HP to the wheels - but it's not like these machines can use all the HP at the wheels anyway - once the wheels are spinning more HP doesn't make any difference, and they break traction well before they run out of HP.

In terms of losing PTO HP - the MX4800 would start with quite a bit more HP, so your PTO HP even with HST would be more than the L39.

There might be a case for it being a problem running a big mower up a hill, or other things like that at speed where a few more HP could make a difference and you're not traction limited. But doesn't sound like you have much work like that, whereas for loader work, box blade work, anything in close quarters like in the woods, an HST is much nicer to use.

As for tier 4 - it is what it is. People get excited, but most equipment seems to be going fine. It seems that using the machine hard is what keeps emissions stuff going best - running hot keeps it happy.
 
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PaulL

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I did forget to mention though. You're in Canada. I presume it's cold. Despite the L35 being old and high hours, you did say it had a brand new cab in a box. All the things we're talking about might be irrelevant if you can be warm......
 
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CdnSldr.ret

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I thought some of those TLB models were quite hard to take the backhoe off? I thought the L39 etc were basically construction machines - they're made to be used hard on work sites, and often end up in rental fleets. But they also I thought didn't have quick attach loaders and back hoes. It sounds like you have lots of 3ph work - make sure you're getting the 3ph parts, and that it's sensible/possible to take the hoe on and off easily.


Wow. I'd have gone absolutely the opposite. The MX is quite a bit more machine, the backhoe probably comes on and off easier, and that's less cost than the nicer L.

HST is a magic thing for anything other than field work, and I believe the HP lost is mostly unnoticeable in real life. You lose HP to the wheels - but it's not like these machines can use all the HP at the wheels anyway - once the wheels are spinning more HP doesn't make any difference, and they break traction well before they run out of HP.

In terms of losing PTO HP - the MX4800 would start with quite a bit more HP, so your PTO HP even with HST would be more than the L39.

There might be a case for it being a problem running a big mower up a hill, or other things like that at speed where a few more HP could make a difference and you're not traction limited. But doesn't sound like you have much work like that, whereas for loader work, box blade work, anything in close quarters like in the woods, an HST is much nicer to use.

As for tier 4 - it is what it is. People get excited, but most equipment seems to be going fine. It seems that using the machine hard is what keeps emissions stuff going best - running hot keeps it happy.
From my research, the backhoe on the dedicated TLB models doesn’t appear to be overly difficult to remove. Seems the biggest issues come from older models where the backhoe has never been removed and the pins are nicely corroded. The 3 point equipment has a nice storage space under the L39. I confirmed this unit still has those pieces.

I do like the dedicated tlb models as they have a swivel seat. I’ll be doing a decent amount of trenching, stump removal, rock moving and general land clearing. I figure the beefier L series would handle the abuse a bit better, plus the increase loader and BH capacity (compared to other 30-40hp tractors) is a big plus (I also plan to run a personal sawmill).

The L39 weights more than the MX4800 with backhoe (approx 7000lbs vs approx 5500). The Mx4800 loader capacity is only 65kg more, but the L39’s BH out performs the BH92 on the MX.

With sales tax on the MX4800, the price becomes equal to the L39….

ohhh decisions..
 

PaulL

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From my research, the backhoe on the dedicated TLB models doesn’t appear to be overly difficult to remove. Seems the biggest issues come from older models where the backhoe has never been removed and the pins are nicely corroded. The 3 point equipment has a nice storage space under the L39. I confirmed this unit still has those pieces.

I do like the dedicated tlb models as they have a swivel seat. I’ll be doing a decent amount of trenching, stump removal, rock moving and general land clearing. I figure the beefier L series would handle the abuse a bit better, plus the increase loader and BH capacity (compared to other 30-40hp tractors) is a big plus (I also plan to run a personal sawmill).

The L39 weights more than the MX4800 with backhoe (approx 7000lbs vs approx 5500). The Mx4800 loader capacity is only 65kg more, but the L39’s BH out performs the BH92 on the MX.

With sales tax on the MX4800, the price becomes equal to the L39….

ohhh decisions..
Right. The TLB models do have more backhoe and loader capacity - and are built like tanks apparently. The MX probably has more "tractor capacity", but for specific loader and backhoe work, I can see why you'd go the TLB.

What are your key tasks - more backhoe/loader related, or more general tractor?
 
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PoTreeBoy

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Wow. I'm trying to grasp 40 hours of driving to buy a tractor - used at that!
I can't really give advice, just observations based on my 2004 L35. I bought my L35 about 2 years ago with 2000 hrs for $14,000 (west Tn $). It has FEL and BH, but was missing the 3PH parts, which is common. The BH may have never been off. Its first owner was a Texas utility I'm told, and it hasn't been babied.
2800 hrs sounds like a lot of hours, but the L35 is 26 years old. The L35 and L39 both have the Glideshift transmission, 8F8R on the L35 and 12F8R on the L39 - the L35 is all mechanical and I think the L39 may have some electrics involved.
The FEL is permanent and the bucket is pinned - no SSQA, yet. The backhoe comes off the same way as other Kubota's.
My biggest maintenance issues have been hydraulic hoses and cylinders. The L35 has about 30 hoses and 11 cylinders. The pins and bushings are reasonably tight, except the swing, which I've been putting off.
Last, the TLB's are sturdy machines. But, like any tractor, there are a lot of vulnerable items underneath that can be damaged by roots, stumps, or stabs (staubs?) in the woods.
 
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GreensvilleJay

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I have no idea about repairs to the tractors, which is 'better',they seem 'similar',dang 'a rock and a hard place'..... but... the older, more hrs, more goodies one is 15K cheaper AND has a CAB ! It's withstood the 'test of time' and I'd get it,toss $5k into a 'parts bank account',use the 'free $10K' to buy fuel and supplies for your new home.
still grasping the 20hr one way trip,you gotta be N of the lakehead,so Manitoba is 'nearby' ?? whereever it gets cold so the cab would be real nice. whatever you get be sure to packa lunch, snacks and dinner, it'ld be a long trip !
 
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Thunder chicken

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I must live near you CdnSldr, I also had a 20hr drive to find a machine. I ended up buying used from a dealer, sight unseen and having it sent up on a transport, negotiated in the price. I had drove about 10 hours to look at another machine but I couldn’t find a friend willing to tow it home :)
It’s tough living up here in the boonies for some things, but the lack of riff raff and the quiet and clean air (minus forest fire smoke) make it worth it!
 
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JimmyJazz

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I have no idea about repairs to the tractors, which is 'better',they seem 'similar',dang 'a rock and a hard place'..... but... the older, more hrs, more goodies one is 15K cheaper AND has a CAB ! It's withstood the 'test of time' and I'd get it,toss $5k into a 'parts bank account',use the 'free $10K' to buy fuel and supplies for your new home.
still grasping the 20hr one way trip,you gotta be N of the lakehead,so Manitoba is 'nearby' ?? whereever it gets cold so the cab would be real nice. whatever you get be sure to packa lunch, snacks and dinner, it'ld be a long trip !
Particularly since he has the mechanical aptitude referenced earlier. I agree with you.
 

PaulL

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How does the cab work with backhoe and flip seat? Is that why the cab isn't installed?
 

CdnSldr.ret

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Right. The TLB models do have more backhoe and loader capacity - and are built like tanks apparently. The MX probably has more "tractor capacity", but for specific loader and backhoe work, I can see why you'd go the TLB.

What are your key tasks - more backhoe/loader related, or more general tractor?
How does the cab work with backhoe and flip seat? Is that why the cab isn't installed?
Initially with the property there will be lots of hoe and loader tasks. Rough Road/driveway building, clearing/pushing brush, moving sawn trees. Stripping top soil to prep for a house slab. The property has lots of shallow rock as well. It will be later on that 3pt functions come more into play, box blading, trail building, brush cutting etc.

This is what I’ll be working with to start.
312CBCB0-2644-4D8B-B67F-22E8FA7EF492.jpeg


Backhoes are available even on most Kobota cab models. You’re just forced to get off the tractor then re mount to get on the backhoe seat. I’d hope that aftermarket models would have a removable rear window or something similar.
 
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CdnSldr.ret

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Here are some more pictures of the land. It’s a constant uphill to the north property line. A decent size creek running down the property and lots of rock outcrops. Quite a few areas are quite steep.

It’s mostly poplar (trembling aspen), balsam fir, white/black spruce, white cedar around the creek and some birch. Only a handful of pines.

CD6499F8-6F49-4381-8A3D-4EF6E9ED1019.jpeg A2E2E0EA-7D49-488C-9EED-95F342A35051.jpeg 5B7FC62D-4275-4AAC-A586-F9786463E909.jpeg E1C76111-4426-4573-BEF6-E1D852DFDFB5.jpeg D7BE27CA-071B-4CEE-8710-A89F4A988136.jpeg EFEFC070-0EB3-4352-9683-F847BCD1B6A5.jpeg 131FA6F9-C92A-4F5D-9E69-C910B0322CB7.jpeg B8D1EE18-B974-44DB-AF6E-244175ADDCDA.jpeg
 

CdnSldr.ret

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This is the MX4800 I mentioned earlier. Being sold by an equipment dealer (non Kubota). $32500 plus 13% tax. Just under 1100 hours I believe. There a current deal on it pending financing.

2937BCB0-95FE-44F5-8F12-D33C1F3CBAAB.jpeg 7EACA522-9538-4C9D-B2AB-D8228CC4E9D0.jpeg 34396C78-C63E-4E80-B93A-C6F3A3BA525E.jpeg 04BC4541-8AE0-499B-9523-4C887E29C498.jpeg
 

DDCD

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I was considering a backhoe or mini X until this forum talked me out of it. Even with softwoods digging stumps with a backhoe sounds terrible. Hire a bulldozer for 1,000 and have it done in a day. Get a smaller tractor to maintain it (brush hog). Maybe I'm the only one with this opinion.
 
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PaulL

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I was considering a backhoe or mini X until this forum talked me out of it. Even with softwoods digging stumps with a backhoe sounds terrible. Hire a bulldozer for 1,000 and have it done in a day. Get a smaller tractor to maintain it (brush hog). Maybe I'm the only one with this opinion.
Lots of people have that opinion (myself included). What we all have in common is that we don't have a backhoe. :) If I had a property that justified a backhoe, even though I know it's probably not a good spend of money, I'd buy one. I'd rather have one there that I can just go and use than save up all my little jobs and hire a guy for a day.
 

hedgerow

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Malcolm NE
My take on this is get you funds ready. Pack your clothes and food and spend a week on the road with the truck and trailer and go look at the L39 and L35. I have drove many times 10-12 hours one way to get a piece of equipment. Usually you can weed out the BS on the phone and dig down to the real story. Sounds like you can do your own work so I wouldn't be scared of the L39 if it has been maintained. You can usually look around someones place and see how they take care of there equipment. I agreed you have high sales tax I would stay out of the dealers. There's good used equipment out there but you have to shop and in your case you will have to drive. Looks like you live in a beautiful piece of the world.
 
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