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Another odd tasked assigned to me at work, Polaris vs John Deere and EZ GO..

Cray Paper

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I'm on project that will run through 2020 and sits on 43 acres of land right next to the Puget Sound in Seattle. My scope of work for the next 8 months involves almost 1800 lineal feet at the property line of ground stabilization work and major utility rerouting for the new buildings . This scope of work will also include scraping off all the topsoil and stockpiling, installing a 2500' long by 30' wide paved haul road for 2018 - 2019 scopes of work etc. My budget includes about 35K for 2-3 site utility vehicles for the field to use. I know better than that, as soon as one of these vehicles shows up it's going to be a free for all with the PM's and engineers, as well as the 5 architectural firms that visit the site almost everyday as well as the owners rep who loves to hang out in our office. We have money stashed in each phase of work so eventually there will be a fleet of these types of vehicles, I'm just the first to pull the trigger.

Back to my question. I am looking at an EZ Go 4 person all terrain golf cart with a bed that flips up for two more seats. It is about 3 years old and the rental outfit that has them just replaced the batteries. I drove it last Friday, it seemed like it would work OK for flaggers to run around the site or to haul 4 people around on tours. Anyone have experience with these things? Anything to check on before buying? The purchase price is some where around 8500.00 for the golf cart.

The other vehicle I am leaning towards is a John Deere Gator. The same outfit has a brand new enclosed cab diesel 2 seater for 25K. I asked if they had anything else and our sales rep said he had a 590i? gas powered gator that has the windshield, winch, dump bed, lighting etc for 12,500. It has about 20 rental hours on it. I think it's a 2014?

I dont know shit about these things, if you have expereince with the Gators as well as Polaris stuff that fits the needs, please post up. It seems that Polaris is a cheaper buy in?
 

Cray Paper

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I'm not buying this for myself, these things are going to be operated by my employees, most of them are younger and wont know how to drive them or they will be very familiar with them as well as dirtbikes, jeeps, sandrails, shifter carts, drag racing, street bikes etc.
 

n2otoofast4u

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We bought an AC Prowler for this same purpose. It works very well! It also has a higher tow and bed capacity then others we looked at.
 

Icky

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The faster they go, the more people are going to be doing dumb shit in them and break them. Some if the UTVs have work keys that limit speed.
Might also look at renting the units depending on cost,no maintenance. I know United rentals and Sunbelt have them.
 

Cray Paper

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Thank you for posting the link, even though it's Canadian, and I had to convert the top speed and US dollar pricing, much appreciated. Have not had to use my toes for math in a while, it was a much needed exercise. The Kubota actually looks like it is a no frills rig that would fit the bill perfectly. Just need to find a local dealer so I can look at one and get comparative pricing.
 

Cray Paper

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We bought an AC Prowler for this same purpose. It works very well! It also has a higher tow and bed capacity then others we looked at.
Looks like AC Prowler is Arctic Cat?

I am quickly seeing that every big name company that makes snowmobiles and construction equipment has some type of vehicle that would fit this need. I just need one that will hold up, has a semi enclosed cab with a OSHA rated lid and doesnt let my guys get in to much trouble.
 

Cray Paper

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The faster they go, the more people are going to be doing dumb shit in them and break them. Some if the UTVs have work keys that limit speed.
Might also look at renting the units depending on cost,no maintenance. I know United rentals and Sunbelt have them.
I am looking at renting, 1100.00+ a month adds up quick when I look at overall duration of the project. Still have 26+ months left to turn over phase 1. Our contract says that our yard has to cut off any tool rental that reaches 75% of it's purchase price. Thats a shit deal for my company, most tools purchased for less than a couple of grand will be burned up on this project, hence my comments about our yard and an RPO agreement for said vehicles. Rental company rents it to the job for 12 months, then sells the equipment to our yard with 70% of the years rental applied to the agreed upon purchase price. Our yard would then get to rent that same piece of equipment back to the project at full market rate until it hit 75% of replacement costs. I did the math, in the grand scheme of things our yard would own the vehicles, but they would be beat to shit by then, as are most things left on a job-site for years, but they would make 3 - 4 K on the rental overall, if they didn't break while our yard owned them. Thats a big "IF".

The other option is for the job to straight up purchase. Owner would pay all maintenance costs, unless of course we did something stupid with them, but would own them at the end. I dont really care about all that, I just want to make sure I recommend buying the right tool for the job to my superiors / PIC and the rest is up to them. Again, I dont shit about golf carts or work site UTV's or what ever they are called. I would assume diesel rigs are much slower, get better fuel economy, but also cost 3 - 5 grand more and if something does break, the costs is about 35% more to fix. This site isnt out in the bunnies, it's in downtown Seattle and most of it is paved. If I need something to move light plants, trailer mounted road signs, gensets, mobile office trailers I will have our yard send out a couple of 3/4 ton or 1 ton trucks they have stock piled.
 

rivrrts429

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Buy or rent the John Deere. I'm in the equipment rental business and rent both of the units you are looking at.

We have the best luck with the JD's. Service costs are way down on them and electric carts are junk unless you're working in the convention business.

The JD won't be clapped out at the end of the job as long as you maintain them. We rent Polaris, Kobota, Bobcat, and JD. Buy the John Deere and you won't be sorry.

The rest are money pits when talking job carts.
 

Cray Paper

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Buy or rent the John Deere. I'm in the equipment rental business and rent both of the units you are looking at.

We have the best luck with the JD's. Service costs are way down on them and electric carts are junk unless you're working in the convention business.

The JD won't be clapped out at the end of the job as long as you maintain them. We rent Polaris, Kobota, Bobcat, and JD. Buy the John Deere and you won't be sorry.

The rest are money pits when talking job carts.
That's exactly the kind of advise i was looking for, thank you.

One more question for you though, is it worth the 4 grand more to step up to the diesel model? I would think maintenance is cheaper with the gas engine, but longevity and fuel economy is better with diesel?
 

rivrrts429

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That's exactly the kind of advise i was looking for, thank you.

One more question for you though, is it worth the 4 grand more to step up to the diesel model? I would think maintenance is cheaper with the gas engine, but longevity and fuel economy is better with diesel?
We only buy diesel models. We buy thousands of units a year and diesel is always the preferred model. We do a lot of business in the ports and natural gas fired power plants so gasoline is a no-go in those environments. Always diesel because of the explosion hazard.

Trust me, buy or rent the JD and you'll be money ahead.
 

Cray Paper

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I have been trying to educate myself on these things via the internet, and it seems that gas engines will perform the tasks asked of them adequately. Not looking for speed, just reliability and ability to get out of some light duty all terrain situations. If they get stuck, they could be picked out of the whole with a tower crane, 400 excavator or 10K forklift. But they need to look appropriate for the job at hand and be reliable.

I drove the 6 passenger EZ GO off road golf cart and it felt really cheap and flimsy. That will not fly on this job unless it's being used inside buildings, witch I am not responsible for right now. Considering your comments I am about to punt the idea of the golf cart and push for a quad seat Gator. Doesn't need to be new, or 4 wheel drive. I spent some time on JD's website and it appears I could pick up new a 4 seater with a couple of options, gas powered, for about 16K along new with the nicely optioned 2 seater for strictly field use I posted pictures of earlier for 12 K.

The diesel models would be preferred for decades of use, but my company doesn't get projects like this very often. The project owner may weight in at some point as they may want to keep the UTV vehicles, but that hasn't happened yet.
 

evantwheeler

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No experience with the JD units, but we had 6 Kubota RTV900 units on a tunnel project I was on in Vancouver for 5 years. The miners abused the shit out of those things daily and they were great units. One unit lost an engine, but other the other units required just normal maintenance and a few frame reinforcements for the overloading that they always saw. I ended up buying 5 from the project and flipped 4 of them to put myself into a Polaris XP1000:D. I still have one Kubota located in Port Angeles, Wa that I am looking to offload and my cousin is looking to offload the one I sold him. Sounds like you need something newer and more geared towards personnel hauling instead of materials & PTO duties though. They also look like they were used in a tunnel/mine, so they probably wouldn't pass the visual test for a new project. They are fun to rip around in, so much better than walking!
 

Cray Paper

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No experience with the JD units, but we had 6 Kubota RTV900 units on a tunnel project I was on in Vancouver for 5 years. The miners abused the shit out of those things daily and they were great units. One unit lost an engine, but other the other units required just normal maintenance and a few frame reinforcements for the overloading that they always saw. I ended up buying 5 from the project and flipped 4 of them to put myself into a Polaris XP1000:D. I still have one Kubota located in Port Angeles, Wa that I am looking to offload and my cousin is looking to offload the one I sold him. Sounds like you need something newer and more geared towards personnel hauling instead of materials & PTO duties though. They also look like they were used in a tunnel/mine, so they probably wouldn't pass the visual test for a new project. They are fun to rip around in, so much better than walking!
We wont be taxing the hauling capability or towing capabilities, but will put some serious mileage on them. If I was the owner of the project I would want to know I have something left for the facility manager to use every day. That is a consideration of the question I posed.
 

Taboma

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Given that it sounds like the project owner will assume ownership and as a general consideration. Diesel is safer and more easily stored and handled, storage longevity will be better as well.
 

Bigbore500r

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I needed a jobsite vehicle for my project up at Cal Poly SLO, ended up choosing a used pickup truck. Cheaper to buy, can carry a real load, and if needed can be taken off site and on public roads. I looked hard at the gator / UTV deal but it just didn't make sense
 

Bobby V

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I needed a jobsite vehicle for my project up at Cal Poly SLO, ended up choosing a used pickup truck. Cheaper to buy, can carry a real load, and if needed can be taken off site and on public roads. I looked hard at the gator / UTV deal but it just didn't make sense
Was that for Sundt Construction.

Are you guys on the Geffen Academy job at UCLA?
 

Bigbore500r

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Was that for Sundt Construction.

Are you guys on the Geffen Academy job at UCLA?
We just finished a few Sundt jobs last year at CSUCI. This one is Cal Poly student housing, 10 buildings and a parking structure in San Luis Obispo with Webcor.

The last job I ran at UCLA was the Engineering 6 building with Amoroso construction.

We just finished the UCLA football facility, the Luskin conference center, and I think we have a new one starting now. Might be Geffen?
 

Bobby V

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We just finished a few Sundt jobs last year at CSUCI. This one is Cal Poly student housing, 10 buildings and a parking structure in San Luis Obispo with Webcor.

The last job I ran at UCLA was the Engineering 6 building with Amoroso construction.

We just finished the UCLA football facility, the Luskin conference center, and I think we have a new one starting now. Might be Geffen?
I seen a guy with a ISEC hard hat at the Geffen job a few weeks ago. I thought you may work for them.

I bid a (2) 9 story dorms at Cal Poly Pomona and am now bidding a project at UC Riverside with Sundt.
 

Bigbore500r

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I seen a guy with a ISEC hard hat at the Geffen job a few weeks ago. I thought you may work for them.

I bid a (2) 9 story dorms at Cal Poly Pomona and am now bidding a project at UC Riverside with Sundt.
Nice, what company are you with?
 

Sharpy

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I bought a 4X4 diesel Gator in '05 to use around my property. It did everything I asked of it. I ended up taking it onto many of my cross country mapping projects and only got it stuck (high centered on a rice check) once. Some positives on the Gator I'd see for you would be:
1. Easy maintinance, all I ever did was oil changes every 100 hours and a drive belt every couple years, never had any major issues.
2. The diesel is a work horse not a race car, so the crews would get bored with the performance (or lack of) and just use it for what it's intended for.
3. Low COG so rollovers weren't a concern for me.

I'm not sure if they've changed the drive train or not, but one major downfall was mine was centrifugal, so letting your foot off the accelerator on a down hill could get dicey for an inexperienced operator.
 

Cray Paper

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I needed a jobsite vehicle for my project up at Cal Poly SLO, ended up choosing a used pickup truck. Cheaper to buy, can carry a real load, and if needed can be taken off site and on public roads. I looked hard at the gator / UTV deal but it just didn't make sense

I need to clarify the pricing I previously mentioned for the 590i Gator. It's a lightly used 2016 model with several options and has 20 hours on it. The straight up purchase price is 18,900. I was on vacation last week and the Friday before I left I asked if there was anyway we could demo the Gator. Our sales guy had it dropped off at the site the following Monday. I put together a select list of about 6 people people that could drive it and they drove the shit out of it last week. They all said it was great, and wanted one for themselves for the site, but also said it was to fast for other to use.

I went back to work this morning and drove it for about a 1/2 hour. First thing I noticed is that my big ass fits in it easily, then I quickly noticed it didn't have any rear view mirrors and the CVT transmission while in reverse lurches big time and their was no back up alarm. It is softly sprung and will quickly get to 40+ MPH of you mash the throttle. It has a low center of gravity and traversed everything obstacle on the site as it sits right now in 2 WD, easliy, including several sets of site concrete CIP stairs. The only draw back I see besides the 19K price is speed capability, that could quickly become a liability with personnel driving it. I loved it though, so small and easy to hop in to and buzz across the site at less than a minute or two.

Our yard has said they could buy some used 4x4 pickups, but I think that adds an entirely different dilemma to whats appropriate for onsite vehicles. Buying 10 YO trucks that can do much more than 40 MPH and letting people hammer down on them also becomes a liability as well as it doesn't fit the professionalism appearance we are looking for. This project is in downtown Seattle, for a high profile client, and honestly, is the only chunk of property of it's size left that could accommodate a campus project of this size.

So now I am trying to find a 4 seat John Deere 560 S4 model (only has 16 HP instead of 32 as the 590i has) but still has power steering, the larger rims and tires, headlights, ANSI roof, seat belts, and back window. Our PAPE salesman found a 590i S4 (4 seats) this morning for 22K out the door in Oregon, but it sold later in the day.

I have ben scoring online and cant find solid pricing on these things, anyone have a connection?
 

TPC

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Wifes family has a farm and ranch in Bethesda.
They bought some new E series John Deeres and the trans would puke every 70 to 80 Hours.
Properly serviced, they'd grenade anyway.
Expen$ive when out of warranty.

Got rid of them and got Kubotas.
No issues at all.
 

j21black

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We have been thru a lot of UTV's over the years...

Depends on what you are looking for...

My stepdad has a JD 825 with an all glass cab that I will not him get rid of. If he tries to get rid of it I will pay him cash on the spot. He has had 2 Honda's that we all hated and just bought a new one last year (1000 Pioneer) after I tried to talk him into getting a Polaris and he wouldn't listen. Now I think he wishes he would have. The engine sits directly under the seat and will damn never boil water it gets so hot in there. I had to put some of the leftover bubble insulation from my shop build in between the seat and the engine to make it bearable and it still gets way to hot IMO. I am also not a fan of the transmission shifting gears. The thing has some top end however.

My dad has a Kubota 1100 Diesel fully enclosed cab with heat and AC. That thing is an absolute workhorse but only runs 28-30 MPH tops.

I just bought a 17 Polaris Ranger 900 a couple months back and am very happy with it. Daughter uses it to tend the horses. I rarely get it in but do take it for an occasional blast down the road. I wanted a General, but the wife put her foot down and wanted a bench seat so we could go 3 deep if we wanted. I couldn't bring myself to buy a 4 seater as those things are the size of a small pickup. I'll probably keep this one and get a general as well in the coming months.

EDIT: - I have been on a few Hog Hunts in swampy areas - Every guide I have been on, the outfits used Polaris Rangers.
 

Old Texan

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I haven't seen Cushmans around much lately, but also haven't paid attention. Cushman has been around along time and were the highest seller in golf and industrial vehicles for many years. I worked for one of their largest fleet dealers that had a couple thousand lease golfcarts and a national contract with GM for plant vehicles in the '70s.

Worth a look.


https://youtu.be/CgZTVkjQwto?t=1
 

Cray Paper

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I haven't seen Cushmans around much lately, but also haven't paid attention. Cushman has been around along time and were the highest seller in golf and industrial vehicles for many years. I worked for one of their largest fleet dealers that had a couple thousand lease golfcarts and a national contract with GM for plant vehicles in the '70s.

Worth a look.


https://youtu.be/CgZTVkjQwto?t=1
LOL, you might want to check the link you posted. It was funny, but not what you were intending:skull
 

Cray Paper

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I have been spending a ton of my own time researching these UTV's and have come to the conclusion that I am still on the right track. I checked out the Kubota's and yes, they are much more industrial looking and come with a diesel engine but when optioned to the point of meeting OSHA / DOSH requirements on the site are very close to the price of John Deere's offerings. I am finding that most JD dealers carry any stock on Gators, and searching for alternates doesnt provide any different results.

My "guy" from PAPE located a 590i S4 a couple of days ago in Oregon but it sold 2 hours after he sent me the email. He is now telling me that it needs to be ordered and wont be available until September. Anyone have a hook up for John Deere Gators?
 

Cray Paper

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So I got serious, did a bunch of searching, found a couple of what I thought were good deals on the John Deere Gators, then had the options priced that we need and presented them to my Project Manager, site General Supt and PIC of our company in charge of the project. I got tons of push back as each unit would cost, with setup, tax and license about 19K each. That's for one 590i (2 seater) and one XUV 855D S4 for seat diesel. Those were the only units available, the 4 seater started at 13,999 but the options and tax add up quick.

I told the site supt you take a look and provide me some direction. He started off with, well lets just by some used toyota 4x4 pickups for 7 grand each. I made him sit and watch while I pulled up used Toyota pick ups on CL. I then explained the downside for having fulling enclosed trucks, with 150K or more on the clock running around the job site being beat to shit by people that now they are through away vehicles.

He later sent me a link to Cub Cadets, some modern day sears and roebuck mail order place with 1800.00 dollar Chinese UTVs and an add for a clearance / loss leader model of a Polaris.

First up, The Cub Cadet. It comes fully optioned for 10,000 bucks, but after doing some research, they are a Chinese knockoff of some UTV manufacture that went out of business and is the same model that can be bought with a different name from multiple places for as cheap as 7K. That's a deal killer for me.

I then started digging in to the Polaris Ranger Series. One of local dealers has a ton of them and I stopped by on the way home tonight. They priced a Ranger full size 570 for 8200.00 plus 850.00 for setup and delivery. This is the base olive green model with round tubing cab construction.

They priced a Ranger Crew 570-4 base model, olive green with round cab structure at 8900.00 plus 850.00 set up and delivery. Both will have additional tax, title and license costs, but that is an entirely different deal as they don't need to be licensed to run on private property.

Do these prices seem fair or is there more wiggle room?

I had them price several options that each will need for construction site use and it came to about 1800.00 each for options plus installation. Full roof's, windshields, back windows, turn signals, strobes, back up alarms, horns, mirrors etc.
 

JRS1939

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So I got serious, did a bunch of searching, found a couple of what I thought were good deals on the John Deere Gators, then had the options priced that we need and presented them to my Project Manager, site General Supt and PIC of our company in charge of the project. I got tons of push back as each unit would cost, with setup, tax and license about 19K each. That's for one 590i (2 seater) and one XUV 855D S4 for seat diesel. Those were the only units available, the 4 seater started at 13,999 but the options and tax add up quick.

I told the site supt you take a look and provide me some direction. He started off with, well lets just by some used toyota 4x4 pickups for 7 grand each. I made him sit and watch while I pulled up used Toyota pick ups on CL. I then explained the downside for having fulling enclosed trucks, with 150K or more on the clock running around the job site being beat to shit by people that now they are through away vehicles.

He later sent me a link to Cub Cadets, some modern day sears and roebuck mail order place with 1800.00 dollar Chinese UTVs and an add for a clearance / loss leader model of a Polaris.

First up, The Cub Cadet. It comes fully optioned for 10,000 bucks, but after doing some research, they are a Chinese knockoff of some UTV manufacture that went out of business and is the same model that can be bought with a different name from multiple places for as cheap as 7K. That's a deal killer for me.

I then started digging in to the Polaris Ranger Series. One of local dealers has a ton of them and I stopped by on the way home tonight. They priced a Ranger full size 570 for 8200.00 plus 850.00 for setup and delivery. This is the base olive green model with round tubing cab construction.

They priced a Ranger Crew 570-4 base model, olive green with round cab structure at 8900.00 plus 850.00 set up and delivery. Both will have additional tax, title and license costs, but that is an entirely different deal as they don't need to be licensed to run on private property.

Do these prices seem fair or is there more wiggle room?

I had them price several options that each will need for construction site use and it came to about 1800.00 each for options plus installation. Full roof's, windshields, back windows, turn signals, strobes, back up alarms, horns, mirrors etc.
Are you in California?
 

Cray Paper

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I am in Seattle. Looks like were being allowed to buy the two rangers. It's amazing how the buy in price is so low but when you walk out the door it 35% more. The combined price for both units came to 17K, out the door the tab is 28K. We added 1800.00 in options for each and my PM insisted we have the dealer install them which costs almost as much as the parts.

I don't think I got hosed on the price of each unit, the options, maybe, the install, definitely.
 
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