farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:40 pm

seems like sub compacts are all the "rage". seems like everyone want's and buys these things. besides 4wd what is big deal with these things, is 4wd the only real difference. someone at work showed me a picture of his new john deere sub compact. i told him it was a nice looking machine but i also told him that it wasnt any bigger then my farmall cub. i also told him that it didnt have the history or prestige of a farmall. serously what can these things do that a cub cannot. we have loaders, belly mowers, sickle bars, push blades, single bottom plows, cultivators, seeders, and decent reliable 4 cylinder engines. what makes these sub compacts so desireable? they arent cheap.

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 2:05 pm

I love my cub, but those sub compacts? They'll do it twice as fast as a cub. And you're right, they aren't cheap. That's why I don't own one! :-)

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 4:02 pm

The Cub Was Designed As A Row Crop Tractor And Thats What It Excels At. This "Smart" Phone On The Other Hand Automatically Capitalizes Every Word I Type. Must Be Made By The Compact Tractor People...

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 6:38 pm

I had seen the Simplicity 4x4 "super-tractor-with-super-capabilities" but then saw the price tag and lost all interest. It's true that there's a special something about a Farmall and you can't beat the price tag of even a restored Cub! You'd have to literally do a side by side comparison. Depending on who you are (you know, the neighbor who wants all the newest and fanciest) I think most people, especially here, will tell you the Cub is a winner. The only caveat is the availability of a loader for most if not all subcompacts. Not many around for the Cubs. Oooo I sense a business opportunity! :D

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 8:03 pm

The super compacts have advantages. More power, a real hydraulic system. Low center of gravity. My cub does most things well. Compacts are expensive and unless I could afford a new one -and I can't - I would rather have an International 460 or 454. An Allis D17 looks to me like a lot of tractor for the money. I'll keep my cub. Vern

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 8:10 pm

I have a feeling y'all know what I think of Cubs vs Sub Compacts :big smile:

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 8:21 pm

v w wrote:The super compacts have advantages. More power, a real hydraulic system. Low center of gravity. My cub does most things well. Compacts are expensive and unless I could afford a new one -and I can't - I would rather have an International 460 or 454. An Allis D17 looks to me like a lot of tractor for the money. I'll keep my cub. Vern

My FIL is tractor poor. He has a Cub for gardening, a redbelly Ford that he has had restored and semi-retired, a MF 235 diesel, a Cub 185 Lo-Boy, and a Kubota compact with a front end loader and belly mower. The Kubota has all the advantages Vern describes, and in many cases it is his "got to" rig. Though I have never used a Cub with loader, I believe the Kubota can do more, harder work with a loader than a Cub. Add to that it has a ROPS for safety, modern lighting, hydro transmission, etc.

We have enough farm tractors to do most chores I need to do. If I wanted an "acreage" tractor for piddling around the yard, etc. and if money was no object I would probably want an International 484 or a JD 2240.


Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 8:40 pm

Now that I am on a computer, I will try to say what I wanted to say earlier. When I was in the market for a tractor, I looked at sub compacts, I looked at grey markets, I looked at all of them. My main goal was gardening, so it kept coming back to the cub. It is the perfect machine for maintaining a row crop. Having said that, if I had more acreage, and a lot of tractor chores to do, it would be something with a 3point, loader, hydrostatic, etc. But for row cropping the cub wins hands down. I don't think todays farmers even "cultivate" anything anymore. Everything is sprayed for weed control, so ground clearance is no longer a thought. That is, of course, with the exception of tobacco.

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Thu Aug 29, 2013 8:54 pm

Don't forget taters clodhopper! I worked them (cultivating and hilling) until they got so high for the cub I couldn't get over them without laying them over. :)

And Jim if you see this picture you can see my tater patch is on a slop. I just had a little hard time getting the funnel working right. :lol:

You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Fri Aug 30, 2013 6:15 am

I love my Cub...and I love my '81 JD 750. But if I had to pick one, I'd have to take the 750 sub-compact. My JD has a FEL and a JD 7 Cub doesn't. JD has ROPS, 4WD, power steering, and a live pto, Cub doesn't. My JD has more power for the same size. I can simply flip the hood open to work on the engine of my to take the darn thing off the Cub to do the same. With the 3 pt. hitch on my JD I can use a wider variety of universal Cat. 1 modern implements and I can hook them up quickly...for example a 4' rototiller. On my Cub I can only use Cub specific implements...some of which have become collector's items and are very expensive...for example, my old Howard Rotavator, which was also a pain in the arse to set up.

Don't get me wrong...I'm a history buff. I love the patina on my Cub. I appreciate the nostalgia...old iron...simplicity of design. I love the way it sounds and drives and operates. My kids love it. It definitely is a useful little tractor around my place.

Just my 2 cents.
Last edited by Bigschuss on Fri Aug 30, 2013 10:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:07 am

I think they are very popular for the same reasons the MCC exists. It is too time consuming to change implements on a cub.
The "quick attach" loaders and standard 3-point category implements make life easy. Having a standardized PTO is also a huge benefit.
With today's 'finance it' society, and dealers sellling new sheet metal (not iron) turnkey and drive tractors have a certain attractiveness to it.

I also would love to have a higher seat time to repair time ratio. Probably need to get to a cub fest or two to make repair time a more enjoyable experience. :coffee: :beer:

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:11 am

Guys, you all know I've been on here for a long time, and I grew up with Cubs, lo Boys, Cub Cadets, and love those tractors. I've owned, worked on, and used all of them. You all know that I'm a pretty straight shooter too, so that's all the apology you'll get from me.

However, my mowing machine, the one that I use every day, is a Simplicity Legacy 4x4 diesel. It's more powerful, faster, has foot controlled hydraulics, mows better than anything! It has quick hitch for implements, AND, you can have the loader, belly mower, and tiller all on the tractor AT THE SAME TIME if needed or wanted, and YES, I've had all on at the same time. The front loader walks itself on, all you have to do is hook up the hydraulic lines then sit on the seat and guide it in to place. With the 3-point hitch and 540 RPM PTO, I can switch between rear implements in about 2 minutes, and not have to lift, pry, leverage, anything, just back up to it and pull/install the pins.

The reason I got this tractor was that I needed a front loader. My back was really giving me problems, and I had a lot of drainage/landscaping work that I needed to do around my place. At the time, I had a 1977 Cub, a 1965 Lo boy, and a Cub Cadet 124, all in like new condition. I was able to sell those 3 tractors along with my mowing tractor at the time (Simplicity Conquest) and pay cash for the Legacy. I can honestly say that I've never looked back! I loved the 1977 Cub, but it didn't have a mower, and changing implements was a PITA! You all know it, which is why so many of you have multiple Cubs.

One thing that nobody has brought up, and it was a HUGE issue for my lawn, was weight and ground pressure. At my place, I basically live in a swamp. Most of my yard used to flood every winter. There was no way I could even drive a Cub around at my house in the spring (until about July) or in the fall (October on). The ground was just too soft. Even going from the barn up to the driveway, which never floods and is the dryest part of the yard, a Cub would sink in and leave tire ruts. The simplicity, even though it weighs about the same as the Cub, with the wide turf tires and 4x4, never marks up the lawn, and I've even mowed in May when parts of the yard are still flooded, just raising the mower up to go through the water.

Here is something else that most eveyone has overlooked. I've owned a bunch of Cubs and Lo boys, and restored most of them. Even the ones I picked up for $800, I had over $5000 invested in after restroring. The ones I've not restored, the one I picked up for $500, by the time I got "most" of the oil leaks fixed, tuned up, cleaned up, working properly where I could use it every day, I had another $1000 in it, not counting labor. You all are kidding yourselves if you think you can own (and have in good operating condition) 3 Cubs for less money than buying a new Subcompact diesel. Sorry, it's the truth, I've lived it!

I've owned the Legacy since 2007 and it has 528 hours on it now. The only thing I've ever done is change oil and filters, and grease it. The diesel engine ALWAYS starts! There are no gears, the foot controlled hydro ALWAYS works! I've never had a single leak in it, I've never had anything break on it, I've never even put a new battery in it. I can't say that for ANY of the Cubs or Cub Cadet's I've owned. Even in perfect condition, there's always something to work on with the Cubs, even simple things.

So, having said all of that, Here's where I stand. If I was planting crops, large gardneing, row-crop farming, had a small truck farm, where I was plowing, disking, cultivating, a Cub would be a great tractor, but a Super A/100/130/140 would be a better choice because of the dual hydraulics, potential for 3-point hitch, and standard 540 RPM PTO, all in a more powerful machine that is roughly the same size just a little larger. If I had more land to mow than I do now, and swamp land wasn't an issue, I'd probaly go with a zero turn mower because they're fast! If I needed a utility tractor to use (not play around with) it would definitely be a sub compact diesel, there's no question. If i was retired, and time was not an issue, and I had all day to work on things if needed, the a Cub would be just fine to have, maybe 2 or 3 of them, but then you've got just as much invested as a nice new Sub Compact Diesel :D Hmmmm.

You can't get into owning, restoring Cubs, asking this question. People on here throw all of this common sense out the window because they love the machines. That trumps everything. I know, I always have one or two Cubs around here to play with. I love them. I love working on them. My kids love them. That pretty much covers it.

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:13 am

I forgot to mention 540 RPM PTO. That is a big one.

I have always found it fun in a weird sort of way to change attachments on a Farmall. However the other day while 'rasslin' with my A-22 mower, trying to attach it to the Super A, I couldn't help but think "Man I sure see why the three point hitch became the standard...."

I wouldn't take anything for my Cub (Well maybe one of the first 81 Super A's) but I will admit part of that is because I have access to newer, more modern stuff when needed. If I could have only one tractor, it would probably be something else.


Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:50 am

When y'all decide to sell or give away your useless outdated Cub stuff and buy a sub compact, keep some of us old iron collectors in mind please. :D

Re: farmall cub vs. sub compacts

Fri Aug 30, 2013 8:33 am

Well now, at first I really didn't have an opinion on this because there really is no comparison. If you buy a Cub thinking it will do what a sub compact will do then you are sadly mistaken. Like what has been stated F-Cubs were engineered and built to be pretty job specific which they do exceptionally well. A sub compact can't compare on farming chores ...and yes, it's pretty apparent that we do love our Cubs. For what it's worth I don't think it's that big of a deal to change Farmall implements, with the possible exception of the Cub 22 mower. Aftermarket implements are another story, like mower decks and FEL's. Is a Cub the perfect tractor? No. A three point hitch and a 540 PTO would have been nice. They are an incredible piece of useable history and a tribute to old fashioned American pride in ones' product and the farmers that used them. That is to say building and using a product that has endured for six decades, even after having been abused and abandoned. As for spending up to five thousand of dollars restoring a Cub, I, for one, am not even close to a number like that, nor will I be. I feel that unless there is a specific reason or reasons to justify the big money for a sub compact tractor (5, 6,10 or more times the price of a Cub) it's worth a bit of tinkering, even if that involves a complete engine overhaul, a new clutch, and/or new tires all around. Are the sub compacts nice machines? Yes. They too do what they were designed to do very well. Try to buy a new one with cultivators, discs, bottom plow, grading blade, mower deck, rotovator, and a front end loader for five grand, even used, it can't be done. Not to mention serviceability and cost of repairs. I like them, but ...lets see how well they're doing in 60 years or so.