After much pondering, I came to a startling conclusion. Based upon strictly hours of operation, it is very possible I have put more hours on this machine than any of my other 2 vehicles. Normally i don't think about it that way, but its still got 4 wheels, its RWD, and has a flat vtwin packing 26hp. And sadly, it is time to say goodbye. As she is now for sale. This is my short testament to a quality machine.
So i suppose some of you on here have large yards to take care of. Figured id write about my experience with our choice of machine.
Where do I begin?
One might think.... "Hm, i didnt know craftsman made mowers. At least not tractor mowers!"
Well, neither did I. And more surprisingly, it sports an engine by Kohler. A company i was familiar with making house appliance items. Well, the more you know!
I have to mow about 3 acres worth of grass. After using this particular machine, i wouldnt want to use anything less than a 54inch cutting deck for more than 3 acres. Mowing and trimming turns out to be nearly an all day affair. So i could expect to be on that seat for well over 4-5 hours, with refuel breakes in between (before weedwacking). Surprisingly, the ride isnt too rough. The seat is just comfortable enough to allow for extended periods of use. Just make sure you wear ear protection and eye protection. Good habit anyways.
Maintenance on a mower of this size has been a breeze. The engine has been SOLID! I mean that, I truly do! Apart from a new battery and regular oil changes, this has been one of the most reliable machines Ive used to date.
The mowing deck is incredibly simple to remove for maintenance. I think its like 3 or 4 pins, and the whole deck drops down. To do a complete blade replacement and repack the bearings with grease takes about an hour if you are quick. It looks complicated, but i assure you, they made work on these things easy.
I was never able to get the thing to do a wheelie on my steep hills, but i could get a good slide/drift as i went down the hill with the brakes locked... ;)
Gas mileage is something i never really kept track of. But to do about 2 acres empties about a whole tank. And its like a 3-4 gallon tank i believe. But it also depends on how long your grass is. So you could get more or less.
Power and Torque. Its not a fast machine by any means. But it is quick enough to get 1 or two wheels off the ground around during a hard turn. However this is a tractor. Its meant to haul stuff. From pulling stumps,trailer fulls of dirt, rocks, and water, to pulling a chicken coop, the engine has enough power to do more than what you'd expect.
In the end if i have to give it a number rating, overall id say 7.5/10
I dont know how John deer tractors are incomparison, or any other competitors, so i want to be fair, there still could be better mowers out there.
The reason i wrote up this little tidbit is two things. One, i am actually gonna miss this machine. I for whatever reason love mowing grass for long periods of time. Two, hopefully might help someone out if they come across a craftsman mower for sale themselves. In my opinion, a craftsman mower with a kohler motor is a good buy.