I have a friend who is looking to buy his first tractor. He asked me how many hours is too many.
My answer was that it depends on the history of the tractor. The hour meter on the dash, even if it works, doesn't tell you anything about how long it has been since -- well -- an engine rebuild, for example.
In my case, the hour meter is missing entirely from my older tractor. I don't recall ever bothering to look at the meter on my newer tractor. Both are over 50 years old and I've owned them for only a couple of years -- with no knowledge of their maintenance history -- so I consider the hours irrelevant.
I'm lucky if I get in 50 hours of seat time per year, so as long as I do an oil change, lube, ignition check, etc. every winter I figure I'm covered. If I ever did an overhaul or major maintenance, then I'd have a meaningful baseline to start from for tracking hours.
So, just as a ballpark and starting with a brand new tractor, how many hours do you think a gas tractor and a diesel tractor should operate before needing an engine rebuild? Or are there other fairly major things (transmission, hydraulics, etc.) that would tend to go out before the engine?
Mark W. in MI