Compact tractor purchase

jparker

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Sep 1, 2022
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I am looking to purchase a compact tractor for my 3 acre property. About 1/2 acre accounts for the house and the yard with the rest consisting of woods. An acre of the woods currently consists primarily dying trees that will be felled and the stumps will be excavated.

Primary duties for the tractor:

- Clear brush, downed trees, distribute fill, and level the one acre being cleared
- Maintain 600 ft gravel driveway
- Process and transport firewood
- Build and maintain one acre garden
- Maintain woods
- General property maintenance (move gravel, dirt, mulch, compost, downed trees)
- Chipper
- No mowing/No snow removal

I am currently looking at the following:

- B2601 and LX2610
- Loader w/QA
- 3rd Function
- Grapple
- Forks
- Box Blade
- Tooth bar

Possible future implements:

- Chipper
- Flail

I'm sure that a B2601 would accomplish all of the above tasks but I am trying to identify if it is worth the slight price increase to move up to an LX2610 to pick up a little additional weight, lift capacity, and ground clearance. An LX only has a slightly larger foot print so size in the woods shouldn't be a concern.

Is an LX too big of a tractor for 3 acres?
 

Mark_BX25D

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Bx25D
Jul 19, 2020
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Is an LX too big of a tractor for 3 acres?

I wouldn't think so. Better a tad big than a tad small. But then, a small tractor can do a lot of work. It just takes a bit longer.

But those two are so close that I don't think you will go wrong in going bigger. I don't know much about the LX series, so I hope others will chime in.

For that driveway, consider one of these ratchet rakes. After watching a bunch of videos, and reading comments on this forum, I'm ordering one.
 

PaulL

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B2601
Jul 17, 2017
1,361
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They're similar tractors. I'd be tempted to go the LX3310 than the LX2610, otherwise you're getting into a bigger machine with the same HP, so a little less ability to pull/move. But again, not that much difference at the end of the day - it really comes down to whether you'd buy bigger implements on the LX than you would on the B - same size implement will probably go about the same......but then, why bother upgrading if you're going to do that?

Things you might notice the difference on:
- I think the LX has a bit bigger operator platform. Sit on them and see which is more comfortable
- I've always found the treadle on my B to be stiff/firm. I gather the LX doesn't have this problem
- The B has an analogue dash, the LX a digital dash. In the sun and with a bit of dirt/dust on it, I reckon that digital dash would be annoying
- Lifting logs/trees/grapple work, the LX will probably lift quite a bit more, becuase the grapples will be the same weight. If you can lift 300 pounds, and you put on a 100 pound grapple, there's 200 pounds left. If the LX lifts 400 pounds with the same 100 pound grapple, usable capacity is now 300 pounds - 50% more.
- Gravel work, the LX will have more pull / more weight

Doesn't sound like you need the mid PTO. You could get the LX-SU. No mid PTO, but you get the big wheels (which look cool), and it's a bit cheaper.

At the end of the day, the LX would probably be a bit better for your use, but not so much that you'd notice the difference unless you had them both side by side. Both will lift a bucket of gravel (the LX bucket will be a bit bigger, but you won't notice that). Both will pull a box blade (the LX box blade might be a bit bigger - but you drive up one side of your driveway, back down the other, does it matter if the middle overlaps another 6 inches?).

If spending a couple grand more for the bigger machine makes you happy, do it. Don't spend the next 10 years wishing you'd done it.
 
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notforhire

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Kubota L47
Dec 5, 2019
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Is an LX too big of a tractor for 3 acres?
It all depends on what you do on the three acres.
I used to unload 2200 lbs pallets of coal. The tractor didn't care if it was on a small lot or a large one.
However it did care about working on side slopes.

I'd rather have a machine that is a little big for my use than too small.
If possible I would see if I could borrow or rent before buying.
 
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BAP

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How tight is your budget? Going with the B2601 will give you money for another implement. Don’t fall into the trap of buying bigger because it is only a little more, because if you analyze every tractor that way eventually you are up to a 100hp tractor. Look at what you are realistically going to be doing with the tractor and the long run. After you get your garden built, and other stuff done, what are your long term tractor needs going to be? Figure out both short term and long term needs. A small tractor can do a lot with time and patience.
 
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DustyRusty

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When picking options for any machine such as PTO or no PTO, also consider the resale value of the option. Like in the old days you could buy a Cadillac with crank windows, but when the time came to trade it, the crank windows made the car a lot less desirable to most buyers. The higher end of the machine, the more important the options that require factory installation on the tractor are to get for resale value. No matter how much we say that we will never be selling the machine, one day your no longer have a need for it, and it will most likely be sold, unless you are like one of the old farmers around here that just puts them in the barn where they stay until the grandchildren are selling the farm and scrapping everything.
 

Bmyers

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I don't know if you have watched GP Outdoors on Youtube. That will give you a good idea of what the LX2601 can do. He uses it on his four acres, plus helping out the neighbors.

As Paul pointed out, I would be more tempted to go with a little bigger (LX3301) verses going to small. Also, I'm a HUGE fan of cabs and yes the cost, but boy are they wonderful.

Yet as BAP pointed out, you need to leave enough money in your budget to allow for implements. You can have the nicest tractor in the world, but without implements, you just get drive around and look good.
 
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RalphVa

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Jan 19, 2020
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I'd scratch the tooth bar. Don't need it with box blade.

I went with the B2601 instead of the LX2601. There are some issues with HST control and whine. No B2601 whine. Just don't like its reverse treadle pedal, but LX is same.
 

skeets

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BX 2360 /B2601
Oct 2, 2009
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To be honest, you might want to look at the 26hp BX. I have an old BX that has done everything you are talking about, push snow gravel, hauled fire wood, in fact I have pulled logs to be cut had a 4 foot tiller for a while, and a back blade. I have cleared more wild roses, wild black and raspberry plots than I care to think about, I still have the scars to prove it. I dont know about hill sides but down here in the coal country we have them, which is something else to think about. Also, the BX will get into and around things and places the LX will not and a MMM is something else to think about. It is your money to be sure, and unless you are really wanting a big tractor, dont let the idea of bigger being better take over for common sense. I got the B because I didnt think things through and finding a FEL for an old tractor is a bit hard. At any rate just think it through and you can do anything with the BX you want on 3 acers.
 
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fried1765

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To be honest, you might want to look at the 26hp BX. I have an old BX that has done everything you are talking about, push snow gravel, hauled fire wood, in fact I have pulled logs to be cut had a 4 foot tiller for a while, and a back blade. I have cleared more wild roses, wild black and raspberry plots than I care to think about, I still have the scars to prove it. I dont know about hill sides but down here in the coal country we have them, which is something else to think about. Also, the BX will get into and around things and places the LX will not and a MMM is something else to think about. It is your money to be sure, and unless you are really wanting a big tractor, dont let the idea of bigger being better take over for common sense. I got the B because I didnt think things through and finding a FEL for an old tractor is a bit hard. At any rate just think it through and you can do anything with the BX you want on 3 acers.
Excellent advice!
 

Elliott in GA

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LX 2610SU w/535,LP RCR1860,LP FDR1660,LP SGC0554, LP FSP500, DD BBX60005
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FWIW, I have an LX 2610 SU (plus everything you see in my signature plus a toothbar). The price of the LX SU and the B HST 26 HP are almost the same (per Kubota's website). If you do not drop down to a BX (more maneuverable with less capacity and much less ground clearance), I would suggest the LX SU versus an LX. You lose the mid-PTO and the better seat, but you gain more ground clearance, bigger tires (more traction and stability) and save money. Also, get R4 tires (strongest sidewalls, thickest tread) for work in the woods.

What task do you have for a flail mower (you said no mowing)? I know they are all the rage, but a rotary cutter will do a better job clearing/maintaining rough areas for less money.

Good luck with your purchase.
 
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jimh406

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HP isn't HP. That is, the bigger tractor has a larger displacement engine and more torque. If you plan to run a tiller, a larger tractor will help pull it. More HP is better, but more torque is more important. That being said, Tractor Time with Tim on YouTube tills gardens with his tiny JD 1025R which is between the BX and B2601 in size.

The most challenging part of your work is moving the firewood and handling the grapple. For that, you are better off with a larger tractor. If you want to stay non-DPF, I'd go with the L2501. It's a lot heavier/stronger than either the B2601 or LX2601 with a lot stronger heavier loader.

The weight of the grapple comes off your loader capacity, and if you plan to lift very much with your forks more loader capacity will help. The L2501 has a lot more lift height. One thing to remember about lift capacity for Kubota is that it is measured at full height. That means. that the bigger loader will generally lift quite a bit more off the ground than the smaller loader and also lift more to the same height as the smaller loader.

I use my L2501 to maintain a section of the "unmaintained" gravel driveway in our community. I use a grader scraper and it works just fine even at my 4000+ elevation. Sure, I have to let off my treadle going up hill, but otherwise, M works fine on level or downhill.

If you want the more deluxe tractor, go with the LX2601 or LX2601SU. I would be a bit concerned about going LX2601SU for resale value because many people use midptos on that size of tractor. If you want a bit more power and durability, go with the L2501.

If you want even more lift capacity, go with a L3560LE with upgraded loader, but I think that's pushing your size limit and maybe budget.
 
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dirtydeed

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B2650 BH77, BX23TLBM, box blade, rear blade, flail mower, Stump Grinder
Dec 8, 2017
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There's very little weight difference between the B01 and LX01 tractors. However, the LX will lift more and higher and also has better ground clearance with larger tires. It also has useable split brakes (not sure if the B'01 have split brakes on left foot).

For what you are describing, I'd forgo the grapple and use that savings towards the larger (LX) machine. Perhaps, the SU version would save you even more $. You can carry more material/weight on a set of forks than you can with a grapple...and they're simple stupid.

The LX machines (formerly B'50) make for a great "landscaping" tractor and punch above their weight class. Add some rear wheel spacers and you'll be set.

Best of luck to you in your decision.
 

Freeheeler

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b2650 tlb
Aug 16, 2018
660
457
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I agree with everything DirtyDeed just said. Then again, we both opted for the B2650 with BH (old name for the new LX), so I guess we would agree.

I have right around 3 acres with woods. I've taken down more trees and dug up more stumps than I'd like to admit. I use the forks and have not come across something a grapple could do that the forks wouldn't as far as clearing logs and building burn piles. The added ground clearance vs the 2601 comes in handy in the woods. I also opted to not get a tooth bar since the backhoe can actually dig.

Both machines will work for you, I would guess you'd be happier in the long run with the LX. Good luck either way and have fun with it.
 

Mark_BX25D

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Bx25D
Jul 19, 2020
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The L2501 has a lot more lift height. One thing to remember about lift capacity for Kubota is that it is measured at full height. That means. that the bigger loader will generally lift quite a bit more off the ground than the smaller loader and also lift more to the same height as the smaller loader.

That lift height becomes especially important if you are trying to load a trailer or pickup bed. If that's in your future, count this factor heavily.

And loader weight capacity is probably one of the most important things. You'll be really frustrated if your loader won't lift what you want to lift and dump it where you want to dump it.

That's my biggest gripe with my BX - lift capacity.
 
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RCW

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HP isn't HP. That is, the bigger tractor has a larger displacement engine and more torque.
True - torque and the tractor's weight greatly affect capability.

My old Minneapolis Moline is just 30-32 hp, Gas, 4cyl 231 cu. in. engine. It weighs in around 6,000+ pounds or so.

As a row crop tractor, the weight makes for good traction and use of the limited horsepower.

I think that's why many guys here like the L2501 versus some B or LX models. Same HP, just a bigger and heavier machine.
 
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mcmxi

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True - torque and the tractor's weight greatly affect capability.

My old Minneapolis Moline is just 30-32 hp, Gas, 4cyl 231 cu. in. engine. It weighs in around 6,000+ pounds or so.

As a row crop tractor, the weight makes for good traction and use of the limited horsepower.

I think that's why many guys here like the L2501 versus some B or LX models. Same HP, just a bigger and heavier machine.
This is very apparent with the MX6000 and M6060. They have very similar hp ratings at around 63 hp, but are very different animals in terms of torque. Both are four cylinder engines but the larger displacement of the M6060 engine makes a big difference with 3.3L vs. 2.4L.
 
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edritchey

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A bunch of cute little Kubotas
Jul 19, 2014
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My .02 is get the LX2610 they are basically the same tractor as the older B2650 and in my opinion would suit your needs perfectly. Get the HST model and it will have the mid pto instead of the SU stripped down models it will hold it's value better and the little difference up front is well worth it.

Let us know what you end up going with I still have a B2601 here and it's an awesome little machine too but I still wish they would have had a B2650 in stock when I got mine I would have jumped on it :) Have fun tractor shopping.
 
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jparker

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Sep 1, 2022
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Thanks for all of the great feedback.

I never considered a BX simply because of the low ground clearance and lift capacity/lift height. I also ruled out the LX2610SU because the cost savings were not enough to justify loss of features and mid PTO (resale).

Price difference between the 26HP compacts isn't a concern and won't impact my decision. It also won't impact what implements I purchase. The main goal of this purchase is to get some of my time back as I am currently doing all of my defined tasks manually. So from my point of view, this is money well spent.

I have been on the B2601, LX2610, and L2501. They all felt huge to me which I guess it to be expected as I have never even been on a riding mower before. I guess my primary concern is getting the tractor home and having it be huge on my property. Maybe this is just a mental thing since all three are within inches of each other.

I did state no mowing but I was referring to not needing to mow grass. I mentioned a possible future flail in order to deal with underbrush.
 
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