Is it worth messing with

Serp0421

New member

Equipment
L4150
Nov 16, 2022
29
20
3
Louisiana
I’m looking for a used tractor for not too much that can use some tlc. Friend’s brother has kubota l4150 that the don’t use anymore. 2wd, no loader and 1800hrs. Parked up 4-5 years ago and last cranked about 2 years ago. Said the lift arms would not respond or not lift last they used it. Assuming it starts with new battery or pull-starting. Is it worth messing with for $1000-$1500 and someone that has mechanical skills but doesn’t know jack hydraulics? A tinker project without major money invested.
 

jimh406

Well-known member
Lifetime Member

Equipment
Kubota L2501 with R4 tires
Jan 29, 2021
1,366
903
113
Western MT
If it's been outside, the pivots could be rusted or the grease if there is any could have hardened. Unless you are seeing leaks, I think penetrating oil may get the pivots to break loose. You could remove the grease zerks and spray penetrating oil in those holes and wait a day or two. You would need to be patient.
 

Serp0421

New member

Equipment
L4150
Nov 16, 2022
29
20
3
Louisiana
If it's been outside, the pivots could be rusted or the grease if there is any could have hardened. Unless you are seeing leaks, I think penetrating oil may get the pivots to break loose. You could remove the grease zerks and spray penetrating oil in those holes and wait a day or two. You would need to be patient.
It’s been outside but under cover. I’m just worried of a major hydro problem. I read some stuff about the return screen on the pump can get clogged and cause issues. That seems like a simple fix but I don’t want to get into have to split the tractor or do anything major like that.
 

DustyRusty

Well-known member

Equipment
BX23S
Nov 8, 2015
2,723
1,770
113
North East
It is worth no more than scrap steel value because you may be buying yourself an expensive piece of yard art. Until it is running and moving under its own power, it is just scrap steel in my opinion.
 
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Fedup

Member
Apr 6, 2016
139
17
18
Winchester
Scrap price? You might throw that into negotiations, but don't YOU believe it. If you can get for $1000 or so you can't go wrong. If it turns over it will most likely start and run. As for hydraulic issues, it's probably more work than expense on that front. If nothing's actually busted, the worst case expense wise might be a new pump.

If you have any mechanical skills, own more than two screwdrivers, a hammer and a Crescent wrench, don't worry over what you know or don't know about hydraulics. The system on that tractor isn't complicated enough to be concerned about. You can work through that.

2WD and lack of a loader are only crybaby detriments. That tractor in usable condition is still worth a sizable down payment on something with a loader should you feel the need.

Around here, $1500 buys you a barely running N series Ford.
 
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DustyRusty

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BX23S
Nov 8, 2015
2,723
1,770
113
North East
You point out 3 very important "ifs". As for the $1500 barely running N series Ford, well that one is at least running. The $1000 tractor isn't running, and the last time it "supposedly" ran was 4 or 5 years ago. As for the "cranked 2 years ago", that doesn't prove very much. A worn-out engine will crank, but it won't run unless you put a lot of money into rebuilding it. You might not agree with me, but I won't give someone encouragement to waste their time and money.
 
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PaulL

Well-known member

Equipment
B2601
Jul 17, 2017
1,403
625
113
NZ
If you buy it, and spend time on it, it's only your time and maybe a bit of parts and consumables like fluids and filters. Hard to go to wrong as long as you're having fun. If you get to the end of it and it doesn't go, you've only got $1,000 and some time in it, and probably learned something. I reckon Kubotas are generally pretty robust, if it was running 5 years ago and was stored reasonably well (no water down the exhaust for example) there's a reasonable chance it'll run again.

If I had the time I'd give it a go. Then it's just down to price, and that really comes down to how much you can afford to lose. If you can pay $1,000 and it turns out it never runs and that's OK, then do it. If that would break a friendship because you'd be upset, then don't go there.

I also think some of these tractors are worth a bit if you part them out. If you can afford to have it lying around and sell of pieces bit by bit, you'd potentially get your money back. The loader on its own could be worth $1,000 if it were working.
 

Serp0421

New member

Equipment
L4150
Nov 16, 2022
29
20
3
Louisiana
If I get time this afternoon I’m gonna try and jump it off and see if she runs. That will be a big deciding factor. I’ll keep y’all posted.
 

fried1765

Well-known member

Equipment
Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
1,996
1,395
113
Eastham, Ma
If you buy it, and spend time on it, it's only your time and maybe a bit of parts and consumables like fluids and filters. Hard to go to wrong as long as you're having fun. If you get to the end of it and it doesn't go, you've only got $1,000 and some time in it, and probably learned something. I reckon Kubotas are generally pretty robust, if it was running 5 years ago and was stored reasonably well (no water down the exhaust for example) there's a reasonable chance it'll run again.

If I had the time I'd give it a go. Then it's just down to price, and that really comes down to how much you can afford to lose. If you can pay $1,000 and it turns out it never runs and that's OK, then do it. If that would break a friendship because you'd be upset, then don't go there.

I also think some of these tractors are worth a bit if you part them out. If you can afford to have it lying around and sell of pieces bit by bit, you'd potentially get your money back. The loader on its own could be worth $1,000 if it were working.
"The loader on it's own could be worth $1,000"

Loader????
What loader?
OP stateed that the tractor does NOT have a loader?
 

D2Cat

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Lifetime Member

Equipment
L305DT, B7100HST, TG1860, TG1860D, L4240
Mar 27, 2014
11,093
2,307
113
40 miles south of Kansas City
L4150 was probably geared transmission, 40 HP fat PTO. Nice size tractor. They quit making them about 1990 so the hours are not high, indicating not hard use hour wise.

i'd be checking tires because if you need to replace them it's a long hunt for used or expensive for new. If you get it and can't finish the project you can advertise it on CL or Marketplace and you'll find someone who will have a scrap yard. They can scrap that out and make their money back easily, just takes time.

I bought an L3250 a few years back. Drove 4 hr. to get it. Knew it had a knock, but I didn't care. We had agreed on a price of $500. I thought I might be lucky and the noise being an injector. Not so. Had spun a bearing and the crankshaft was gaulded. Tinkered for a while, then sold it. I used alt. and some other parts for my skid steer project and sold the old beast for $1200.
 

Serp0421

New member

Equipment
L4150
Nov 16, 2022
29
20
3
Louisiana
Well had a big rat nest under the hood wouldn’t jump off. Jumped the starter and got it to turn over a few times. I’m putting the battery on charge then gonna try again. I think this model has the glow plug when you turn key to the left. Hoping a hot battery will make all this work.
 

PaulL

Well-known member

Equipment
B2601
Jul 17, 2017
1,403
625
113
NZ
"The loader on it's own could be worth $1,000"

Loader????
What loader?
OP stateed that the tractor does NOT have a loader?
Ugh. I misread the lift arms as being loader arms.

OK, so no loader to salvage. But still an OK machine.
 
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Serp0421

New member

Equipment
L4150
Nov 16, 2022
29
20
3
Louisiana
Well got it to fire up! Had to keep jumping the starter and it finally started. Sounded good. Never put it in gear because it has a rear flat. Wouldn’t get any move out of the lift arms. Felt like they were free floating because I could lift them buy hand easily. I pulled the inside lever that said something about deep-high and they shot up but couldn’t get them to move again. I feel like this lever set a range for the lift arms. It might be operator error. Going to pick up Saturday for $600
 
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Serp0421

New member

Equipment
L4150
Nov 16, 2022
29
20
3
Louisiana
Feel like I got a good deal! Thanks for the input and I’m sure I’ll be asking for more info/pointers and this project unfolds.