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Power equipment quality; Big Box store vs. Local mom/pop shops

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by timbo, Apr 25, 2019.

  1. Asaltweapon

    Asaltweapon NES Member

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    Fact.
    My buddy who was a manager at a lawn mower dealership put HD and Blows mowers in the back of the repair orders.
    They couldn’t refuse to do the work but they had an obligation to take care of their customers first.

    As for power tools they are not the same.
     
  2. Dennis in MA

    Dennis in MA NES Member

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    I know this: the same models of Ariens snowblowers at HD are sold at the local mom and pop. That said, I’ll take the mom and pop. Build that relationship with the people who will end up servicing it.
     
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  3. mwalsh9152

    mwalsh9152 NES Member

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    If you buy a lawn tractor at a dealership, you are getting a mechanic that will be doing a more delivery setup on it. At HD or Lowes, it's a minimum wage halfwit smashing it together.

    When that box store tractor has a problem and you have to bring it to the mom and pop for repairs, you will be at the back of the line with zero preferential treatment like the people that bought from them
     
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  4. AntiHippie

    AntiHippie

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    This.
     
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  5. Sparkey

    Sparkey NES Member

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    The guys who put the tractors, lawnmowers, grills etc together at Lowe’s and HD are paid per piece so you have to question some of that.
    There are a few guys on C.L who have some nice quality stuff all refurbed for fair prices.
    With a hilly lot get wheel weights and something all wheel drive if possible
     
  6. beaker

    beaker NES Member

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    It is true. The box stores get cheapened versions of the tools. Especially true for lawn tractors, mowers ets. I would buy a push mower, but nothing more than that from a box store. A dealer shop is where to sp-end your drachmas on power equipment if you want it to last and be taken care if you need warranty service.
     
  7. Chris

    Chris NES Member

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    The weak link is the transaxle. This is the piece that the rear wheels bolt to and a belt drives it from the engine.

    Almost all of them are made by a company called Tuff Torque.

    IF you see a K46 as the model, (or anything similar) RUN. The transmission will never last the hills.

    K57 is good, larger numbers are better, but usually only on much more expensive machines.

    [​IMG]
     
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  8. highlander

    highlander

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    Go to the mom & pop store they more than likely will pick up and deliver if you're in need of a repair. Lowe's and HD you'll need a friend with a truck or trailer to bring it to be repaired.
     
  9. Asaltweapon

    Asaltweapon NES Member

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    Do I buy my guns at XYZ box store or a local guy.
    I’m local.
     
  10. *chris*

    *chris* NES Member

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    Here is an example of a garden tractor.

    Husqvarna Riding Lawn Mowers TS 354X

    Notice the "ground engaging" nomenclature. You are spending $3000-$4000 for something that will last.

    Right now I have a zero turn and a diesel tractor, so I am not really up to date with the current garden tractors.

    Chris
     
  11. andrew1220

    andrew1220 NES Member

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    Yup. This is what I’ve been told from a couple shops.
     
  12. TLB

    TLB

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    I have a K72 in my rig. You really need to buy the best transaxle you can if you want to move trailers of material, especially on a hilly lot.
     
  13. mtnbiker26

    mtnbiker26 NES Member

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    I worked at Home Depot in the late 90's when I was in college. I know the John Deere mowers they sold then were actually made by Murray.
     
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  14. Snora

    Snora

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    This.

    Big box stores with enough buying power will say to manufacturers "if you make this coffee maker for $XXX we'll stock it in thousands of our stores." In order to cut costs / not cannibalize sales of their higher end models they'll need to create a unique SKU and cut corners to hit said price point. Same goes for Black Friday sales.
     
  15. drgrant

    drgrant Moderator NES Member

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    They might not do it now, but Ariens used to do it with the box stores. Box store machines got chinese motors and real stores more often than not had Briggs & Stratton. Now I think they just play games per model
    number and the box stores carry more of the junk models than the better ones. (because needless to say, having a model number shared and two different machines causes brand confusion etc. )

    -Mike
     
  16. garandman

    garandman Instructor NES Member

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    Taking Ariens as an example, they have lines that start with Sno Tek, Compact, Classic, DeLuxe, and Pro. HD only stocks the lower-end lines. Those machines are identical to the same model sold at the dealer.

    The Honda mower we bought at a local dealer was identical to what was sold at HD. Same price as well.

    Some mom & pops are great, others are small because they aren’t very good businessmen.
     
  17. Rob Boudrie

    Rob Boudrie NES Member

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    In some businesses (consumer electronics) a big box store will order an existing product and require a model number specific to that chain only be applied to the product so they can offer a generous price matching guarantee on the same model found selling for less elsewhere.
     
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  18. Len-2A Training

    Len-2A Training Instructor Instructor NES Life Member NES Member

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    I know that Costco will have a mfr add an accessory (extra battery, cable, attachment, etc.) to the product and thus it will have a different SKU number even though the underlying product is identical to that found in other stores.
     
  19. babygorilla

    babygorilla NES Member

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    Some manufacturers of power equipment make a secific model for sale at box stores. Some do not. If the numbers are the same, then they are the same product. They aren't going to revamp the production line just to add a plastic piece to a metal piece for the same model. But they will for a different model.
     
  20. robjax

    robjax

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    I have a Toro Snow Thrower. Bought it from a Toro dealer. HD and Lowes do not carry this model.

    I have a John Deere Riding Lawn Mower. HD and Lowes do not carry this model...

    I bought a Toro Snow Thrower from HD a couple of years ago...similar model and similar model number....much weaker machine.
     
  21. Mark from MA

    Mark from MA NES Member

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    Agree. They are built to a price point. And cheapened down thru the years. Buy the 1500 hundred dollar model nowadays, Plan on fixing some shit over its life. Yes, shit that shouldnt break but does now cause its cheap. Where in the 80’s it wasnt because companies actually cared about name and quality.

    Buy the 5000 dollar, Scag, JD, Hustler etc pro landscaping mower and you wont touch it for years with the exception of maybe a belt and blades and oil change. And if you do have to replace a wear part, they are MADE to be replaced quick and easy by the user. The Hydros are pro grade with filters and quality that should last a lifetime, especially if your just using it for your one lawn once or twice a week half the year.

    Pay now or pay later. But I can guarantee you wont find any of these pro grade models at the big box store.
     
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  22. Shark_Cage

    Shark_Cage NES Member

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    My 2cents. I bought my dishwasher from a local company (Grays Appliance) and my snowblower from Mastranzi &Sons. I’ve had really good experiences with both companies.
     
  23. Romokid

    Romokid

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    My in-laws bought their Toro from a big box store (HD) and when it was having problems (just out of warranty time period) I checked around and found that that particular model was only made for HD. When they finally decicded to get it replaced they went to a local dealer and they guy there told them that a lot of times those machines will be slightly different bushings instead of bearing for example (as was mentioned above). Just my .02 that I found out while trying to help my in-laws.
     
  24. Asaltweapon

    Asaltweapon NES Member

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    A few years back, well more than a few I bought a Vermont Castings BBQ at a rather attractive end of season price from HD. We have a large overhang and grill year round. Anyway it needed some new burners and I went to buy them from VC and nope. No replacement parts available for that model as it was only made for HD. WTF??? I was furious buying a 600.00 grill that still looked near new yet couldn't buy burners for it anywhere. It was replaced by a Webber. And yes, VC is on my shit list for companies.
     
  25. EMTDAD

    EMTDAD

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    FWIW, Standing outside here at Lowe's looking at the tractors and I see this on the back of a John Deere.

    20190504_090141.jpg
     
  26. TLB

    TLB

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    Big box stores don't sell "tractors". Those are all lawn mowers. Deere and others have decided to tap into that market with lower end machines. But they are night and day.
     
  27. EMTDAD

    EMTDAD

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    Yes it's a lawn mower tractor, but is it the same that you'd get at the John Deere dealer?
     
  28. nstassel

    nstassel NES Member

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  29. TLB

    TLB

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    No it isn't and it is much cheaper too.
     
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  30. Paul455

    Paul455 NES Member

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    I just bought a John Deere X370 tractor from a local dealer.

    The transaxle has an oil filter and is 100% serviceable.

    That differentiates it from the lower end tractors that have sealed transaxles.

    It also is fully hydraulic - steering, implement lift, etc.
     

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