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View Full Version : Mule vs. Gator vs. Volunteer (Cub Cadet) any thoughts???



Joyrider
Jul. 28, 2010, 12:21 PM
Hi All!

Our barn is looking to replace a very old, very dead Gator. It was a handy thing for sure and we are missing it. Am looking into other brands besides John Deere. Need 4x4, 1000 lb payload capacity with bed lift and gas powered.
Want to spend under 10k and would LOVE to find a lightly used one.
Thoughts??? Thanks.

Bluey
Jul. 28, 2010, 02:36 PM
Well, you already know how handy they are and as for the brand, whatever you can find and have someone to work on them close, that is what I would go to.
Ask your local such dealers/shops to keep their eye on a used one for you.:)

SunkenMeadow
Jul. 28, 2010, 02:46 PM
I love my Cushman. They don't make them anymore as far as I know, but would recommend a used one, mine is a 70 something and is a real workhorse. I believe Polaris makes some utility vehicles too...

Scruffy
Jul. 28, 2010, 05:22 PM
Love my kawalsaki mule. Paid 7000 for it brand new and have had no problems.

Berkley
Jul. 28, 2010, 06:34 PM
With Deere's Equine Discount Program you may be able to get a new gas 4x4 ( H&L with locking differential ) gator with dump body for around $10,000......see a lot of Gators sitting on dealer lots these days.....

I bought one for the farm last year about this time.....it was really great this past winter....The Gator we have has electronic fuel injection and cold starting is no longer an issue....With 28HP it does a good job

Bluey
Jul. 28, 2010, 07:06 PM
We too have one of the newer JD gators with ROPS and bucket seats.
It has electric lift on the bed.
We like everything about it except the bucket seats.
A long bench seat would be more practical for us, if somewhat less comfortable.

I expect we would have liked most any one kind, they are all good, but the JD dealer was the closest to us by many miles.

anchodavis
Jul. 28, 2010, 08:05 PM
No offense to JD lovers, and I think most of their machines are good - but all the gators I've dealt with have been major pains in the arse. Chains popping off, batteries dying young, easily flatted tires, won't start even in reasonable temps, etc. I've never owned one but I've worked at three barns that had them and all of them had trouble (granted they were a few years old, but not THAT old). If it were reliable, it would be a great machine though!! Does Kubota make something similar (just curious because I've been looking at their tractors)?

OneonOne
Jul. 28, 2010, 10:21 PM
Yes, Kubota makes a very nice utility vehicle. We have a Gator, but when it comes time to replace it we'll likely look at a Kubota or Polaris 6-wheeler. My husband uses a Polaris (Ranger, I think is the model) regularly at work on very rough/wet ground and he loves it. Our Gator get stuck everywhere. It's nearly useless in the snow (it's just 2wd).

alabama
Jul. 29, 2010, 12:38 AM
I have a 4x4 '05 Mule that I bought used a couple of years ago. I love it. It's probably the most used piece of farm "equipment" on the place.

(I can't speak to the other brands because I have no experience with them.)

Zu Zu
Jul. 29, 2010, 09:07 AM
Love my Kawasaki Mule -- tried a Gator -was not impressed ~ slow starting even in reasonable temperatures and was not as powerful or strong ~ IMHO

neversaynever
Jul. 29, 2010, 11:15 AM
Have a 4WD JD Gator for 3 years and would not get one again. Have had transmission problems twice, off-road tires went flat (finally had inner tubes put in all), and can be hard to start.

Tommy's Girl
Jul. 29, 2010, 08:02 PM
I got a used 06 4X4 Mule with 1400 hours on it last year for 5K. I've spent another $1300 on accessories (plow, cab, winch, chains) and had the carburetor rebuilt for another $200. I could get the hydraulic lift for the bed for another 1K. It's been a workhorse, and I haven't regretted buying it for a second.

I can't speak for the others as I don't have any experience with them, but this mule has tackled hills, deep snow, dragged logs out of the woods, etc. Wonderful piece of equipment.

Huntertwo
Jul. 29, 2010, 09:27 PM
No offense to JD lovers, and I think most of their machines are good - but all the gators I've dealt with have been major pains in the arse. Chains popping off, batteries dying young, easily flatted tires, won't start even in reasonable temps, etc. I've never owned one but I've worked at three barns that had them and all of them had trouble (granted they were a few years old, but not THAT old). If it were reliable, it would be a great machine though!! Does Kubota make something similar (just curious because I've been looking at their tractors)?

I'm surprised to hear that. I use a JD Gator, (diesel) and even with our cold winters, it starts extremely easy. No mechanical problems whatsoever in two years. Plus excellent in the snow. That baby gets through anything!!

walktrot
Jul. 30, 2010, 01:04 PM
My b/o is on her 2nd Gator. The first she bought from a guy who bought it to help clear a little land. It had 25 hours on it, virtually brand new. I forget how many years ago, but probably around 6. Yes, it needed some repairs over the years, but just about anybody was driving it. It never had problems starting in Maine winters. Somebody did build up the sides and front of the bed to increase capacity. It finally wore out and she found another one last fall with about 85 hours at the local JD store. I know she got a good deal because she bought new round baler a year ago. Now we'll see how long it takes to run this one into the ground.

jacksmom
Jul. 30, 2010, 01:11 PM
nothing constructive to add.

i'm just totally bummed out that this thread is about mechanical devices.

i would have put my money on the mule in this fight :)

Megaladon
Jul. 30, 2010, 09:52 PM
:lol: I am so stupid! I was like "OMG a mule went after a gator!!"

Guess it's been a really...long...day. :)

onthebit
Jul. 31, 2010, 08:05 AM
We have both a Gator and a Kubota RTV 900. When the Gator dies it will be replaced with another Kubota.

Zu Zu
Jul. 31, 2010, 10:05 AM
We have both a Gator and a Kubota RTV 900. When the Gator dies it will be replaced with another Kubota.
Details about your Kubota RTV 900 ~ please ~

onthebit
Jul. 31, 2010, 01:32 PM
Hi Zu Zu, it is a diesel, 4WD and has a hydraulic dump bed. It drives better, seems to be built a bit sturdier, and generally just seems to be a notch above the Gator. We absolutely prefer it over the Gator. We've used the Kubota RTV 900 to tow the Gator in from the pasture on more than one occasion when it has died . . .

Bluey
Jul. 31, 2010, 01:53 PM
The Kubota diesel UTVs are the mac trucks of the UTVs.
They are stronger, better made, less toy like, rougher riding and handling and slower too.
You don't try to bring cattle in with them AND they cost, when I checked, since a neighbor has one he loves, about 1/3 more than the rest of the lighter UTVs.

So, if you need might in your UTV, want to pay that much more and will ask for heavy, hard use, consider Kubotas.:)

At that time, for less money, we could have bought a used Ford Ranger 4x4 little pickup and done almost the same, gone to the same places, inside a cab with heat and air PLUS driven it on the highway.
So we got a Gator and the Polaris was right there with it.
The difference, the JD dealer was many miles closer and better at servicing them than the Polaris dealer.

Zu Zu
Jul. 31, 2010, 04:54 PM
Hi Zu Zu, it is a diesel, 4WD and has a hydraulic dump bed. It drives better, seems to be built a bit sturdier, and generally just seems to be a notch above the Gator. We absolutely prefer it over the Gator. We've used the Kubota RTV 900 to tow the Gator in from the pasture on more than one occasion when it has died . . .
Thank you :D for the information ~ will look into the Kubota RTV :yes: ~ as we have a Polaris ATV and a Kawasaki Mule for zooming around and fixing things. BUT .. need to replace the Mule soon as it is ancient. We did not like the Gator , we had on "trail basis" as it was very hard to start or at best = slow starting and seemed wimpy actually sent it back early as it was a PITA really ~~~ so thank you I needed this push towards Kubota :yes::D:cool:

Unfforgettable
Jul. 31, 2010, 11:52 PM
After having 3 Gators, I went to the Polaris Ranger UTV. There is no comparison. The Ranger is head and shoulders above the gator in every way....it is a real workhorse. The Kubotas are nice too, but pretty spendy, and I find the diesel noise annoying. I Love my Ranger!!

Bluey
Aug. 1, 2010, 08:13 AM
After having 3 Gators, I went to the Polaris Ranger UTV. There is no comparison. The Ranger is head and shoulders above the gator in every way....it is a real workhorse. The Kubotas are nice too, but pretty spendy, and I find the diesel noise annoying. I Love my Ranger!!

I also like the Polaris better, but they were on back order when we were looking, several months behind and the service department is very bad here.
We went with a still good one on the gator we bought, that every year are being improved very much, so they are almost as good.:yes:

Zu Zu
Aug. 1, 2010, 09:23 AM
After having 3 Gators, I went to the Polaris Ranger UTV. There is no comparison. The Ranger is head and shoulders above the gator in every way....it is a real workhorse. The Kubotas are nice too, but pretty spendy, and I find the diesel noise annoying. I Love my Ranger!!
Thanks for posting ~ will look into this Polaris Ranger UTV ~ :cool::D

Halt At X
Aug. 5, 2010, 08:58 AM
No one has mentioned Honda. They make the "Big Red" UTV. We have Honda atvs, pretty much any small power equipment we own has a Honda engine. Dunno what the price is on it, but you truly get what you pay for. I would check them out before you make up your mind.