Why we didn't get this sooner???? We have gardens the same sq footage as most peoples houses and had been using a front tine tiller for 17 years....The completeness of the work in one pass is outstanding. We often relocate our fruit plants and this RT65 has made this an easy project!! Love that we bought this and that the staff at Arnold's of St Cloud were as helpful and informative as they were.
After only 1/2 season last year and the start of this one, I am already looking for parts!!
I have a sum total of about 5 hours on my brand new tiller purchased last year and I'm already looking for belts and spending valuable time jacking with belt tensioners and the like.
POOR DESIGN There is absolutely no speed variable to the drive wheels. While in rear tine mode the tires constantly spin faster than the machine can go. While in forward tine mode even in the loosest of soil it will run away with itself and holding it back is near impossible. Need variable speeds for both tilling and non tilling as walking behind the drive while not tilling will bore you to death.
Additionally, there is no oscillation on the tiller so when one sides tire falls off into previously tilled soil or a low spot, the whole tiller tilts off into that direction digging an even bigger hole that exaggerates the problem (because the tires are constantly spinning faster than the machine travels as stated above). This causes you to hold up one side of the tiller and push it through the low spot....and repeat.
I find this tiller to be more work than the traditional drive less kind with the very limited exception of tilling back over freshly tilled soil, and by that point who needs the drive assist.
I will be selling my "cadet" and purchasing a pto driven tiller for the back of my tractor, which is what I should have done to start with!
Let me summarize in case someone doesn't want to read past my initial comments. It's not as easy to use as stated. It gives you a work out especially turning it on the 90 degree corners. It does turn the soil over sufficiently as stated. The clutch/idler pulley must be adjusted in a manner that it still tills and pulls forward but doesn't burn up the belt sides up when in idle. There is no way someone can till the full depth unless you have a real soft garden soil. Therefore, you will have to till numerous times with increasing the depth each time. The transportation forward speed is a little slow, and larger gear ratio would have been better for this application.
We have had a lot of rain in our area so there was a spell with 48 hours of no rain so I tried tilling the garden. The engine started on first pull after gassing it up and putting in oil. First I'm going to say it's not a walk beside the tiller unless the garden Gnomes have tilled your soil for you already, an if that is the case you don't need the tiller. My garden soil is real soft but with winter grass and weeds growing on the top, and therefore was gummy due to the rain. During my first hour of tilling, I was doing the full 10 inches deep since my garden had been tilled last fall prior to winter. In the tillers defense I should have been doing only about 4 inches. The tiller motor was straining most of the time and the tiller would jump out ahead(try to run away) if it hit a tough area, especially a tree root which grows out into my the garden from the sides. (I should have done the tilling in layers but this would have taken 3 times as long, to do it in 3 increments).
After 1 hour and the tiller stopped moving forward and the tines wouldn't rotate. I removed the belt cover, first the engineers should be horse whipped. They used two sizes of nuts to hold the cover on. What's wrong with a little standardizing. After removing the cover it was apparent what the problem was. The belt had rolled in the pulley drives and was no longer engaging the grooves on the pulleys. So I called Cub Cadet( really MTD answered the phone) and they never heard of the belt rolling. They stated they would send me a new belt but for future problems I would have to take it in for repair. (This would be a real pain in the rear since the machine requires two guys to lift into a pickup). In the mean time I purchased another belt and put it on. However, I left the belt cover off so I could see what was happening.
After resuming the tilling, after replacing the belt(with belt cover off) I noticed the engine is not aligned with the rear large drive pulley. I also noticed if you don't have the clutch adjusted just right it so it can engage the tiller and forward drive at the very end of the clutch engagement bar then the belt starts to burn in the motor pulley. If too loose then it burns when under load at the engine pulley. So there is a fine line between the two. Also I would suggest that if you are going to idle more than a few minutes you shut the tiller off since you are rubbing the side of the belt in the motor pulley during this whole time and will glaze the belt sides, because the belt is not turning during idling.
Turning the tiller monster at corners is not easy and I'm a big and strong guy. This has nothing to do with depth of tilling so turning is hard no matter what. This is no machine for the weak. I have fences on all four sides of my garden so I can't just go back and forth making turns on the two ends outside the garden area. So I had to turn at every corner which required a lot of transmission shifting in reverse and then back to forward if you were going to get all the soil tilled and not leave untilled corners.
I previously had a front tine tiller that would do 5" deep for 30 years(went thru 3 motors) and feel the my old front tine tiller was about as tough to muscle around as this new rear tiller. So as far as ease of operation I find the rear tine tiller not any easier to use than a front tine tiller. If you are going to have to make multiple passes to do your garden then I see no advantage to this rear tine tiller.
great tiller but i should have done a little more research. the only issue i have is that you cannot get any attachments with this tiller. i just assumed you could when i bought it. then after searching online and calling local dealers, i find out that you cannot get a hiller with this tiller. if you dont need one, then i would definitely recommend. if you do, then look elsewhere. you dont want to end up like me with an expensive tiller, but asking people to come over to make your rows.
I read several of the other reviews listed both positive and negative. I have had mine for 3 months and am glad I did not follow the Negatives. The forward and reverse tine rotatation is one of the greatest assets. Starts 1st time everytime and cuts through everything. Reading the reviews helped me to watch for the errors that were made by assemblers. Check the book for proper assembly before and if you are having problems with the operation. If you are considering by a new tiller I highly recommend the cub cadet. You won't go wrong.
Did the research, put hands on several machines, read reviews, watched every "youtube" I could find and talked to people who own a Cub Cadet RT 65 Had issue starting machine first time and discovered plug gap was restricted with "gum" like substance. Cleared the "gum" and machine started. Used about 5 hours, no trouble. Shifting improved with use.
Clean up is super easy. The removable side shields are great idea.
I did notice some of the "tines" were loose. So I would recommend checking all nuts and bolts after first use
I wanted a rear tine tiller for a long time. I feel for the money this is an excellent machine
I bought this tiller at Tractor Supply three years ago. This tiller does all the work and then some. I've tilled my garden, Cindy's garden, and bought some land where I put in a half-acre garden area. I feel like this must be an "Industrial Strength" tiller because it works hard and well EVERY time. There is a trick to setting into the right gear and tine direction; but after a while I got the hang of it. My only draw-back so far is the drive belt came off a couple of times. I had no trouble getting it back on (4 bolts/screws off and back on). The problem I have is finding the size of the belt listed ANYWHERE on this Cub Cadet Parts Site - so I can buy a new one. I'll have to take it to a local car parts place where they'll measure it and sell me a replacement.
In my opinion, this is the BEST garden tiller ever made. Oh, and the Honda motor starts every time.
I have had this model around 4 years. First two seasons it worked great, this year and last year will not run. Hard to get parts for. I worked on it last year for two days and gave up, I have only used the tiller for 2 seasons, and really how much do you use one with a small garden. I would say it may have 5 hours on the motor. When it ran it did great.
I have had the RT 65 roto tiller for about 3 months and have used it 4 times,breaking new ground and working loose soil so far the RT 65 has performed excellent. It does go a little fast in loose soil, but it is nothing that can't be handled, once you get use to it. It all boils down to getting use to using it.
Excellent engine and power to weight ratio. One review indicated it was a little fast with tines in forward position, just lift up on handle it will cease shoving the unit. Like all tillers they require getting used to. With one year of gardening and yard work I have no complaints. The gear selector hang ups are are result of the unit being in a bind, simply use the clutching handle to set the gear box in a neutral position and wah-lah it goes in gear with no problems. The bi-directional tines are great when your soil changes with moisture etc. I found out that by running a little slower I have better control and better tilling results. Being retired I'm in no hurry anyway.
In my use in a small garden, I cannot rate this tiller well. The gear box was stiff from day one, but I thought it would work it's way out. The tines now do not work. This happened a couple months after the warrenty expired. The cost of a new gearbox would buy a new tiller. Should I buy a Cub cadet? Don't think so.
Bought this awesome tiller spring 2011 for a very neglected farm. It has the power I need, and have learned how to handle it comfortably after 20+ hours. Love the safety features. When it hits all the buried junk it has unearthed, it shuts off. Self-sharpening blades are a blessing (can we get this feature for the mower?). Rear tine with forward/reverse is ideal for all types of soils. The tires are good size; anything smaller would get stuck on the final pass. We are so pleased with Cub Cadet, we are looking at their other equipment.
I have had a troy bilt pony and a honda rotor tiller. The troy was a workhorse but was hard to start on times. The honda lower transmission gave out and was very expensive to fix. I bought a cub cadet and was pleasantly surprised with the performance. It really gets into the ground and is easy to operate. The changing gears features are on on control which is not the case with either the troy or the honda. They are a little uncooperative on times but a little jiggling and they are fine, I really like the reverse tines feature.
I have had this tiller for a year now. I probably have 30-40hrs on it. Overall it works very well. Starts easily. Runs without bogging down. The two features of this tiller that I have found that could use some improved engineering are No.1- the changing of the tine digging depth by removing the pin keeper and pin to line up the depth hole could somehow be made easier, No.2- shifting, it can be hard to shift from one mode to the next, in particular out of reverse. If the shift pin is not in the right place it is very difficult. I cuss a lot when it gets stuck, but with a few choice words it usually helps get it to shift.
Bought one last fall, used it a few time for winter prep. Motor in front, long handles in back keeps it from getting into corners of garden. In soft dirt (fwd/fwd) it'll bog down and stop engine. In hard dirt (fwd/fwd) it'll run away from you (I'm 280#.) Over winter transmission locked up (warranty replaced.) Now it pops out of gear during normal (light) use. It does a great job of taking grassy area and turning it into garden area if you have a large area to work in. Adjusting the depth with each pas, on virgin ground it works great. Narrow footprint makes it "tippy" on rough ground. Gearing to wheels should be slower to allow the tines to work more. This thing just chops and scoots.
I bought my tiller Mar 2009, finally used it 2010 about 1/2 hour, then stored again. Pulled it out two days ago to work flower beds, only problem I have is the depth holes do not line up past the 3rd mark, I'll probably have to re-drill them to work. Pronto starting, no struggle for a 67 yr. old woman's equipment and all the power I want plus some.
I'm pleasantly surprised with the quality of this machine. I've used TroyBilts for thirty years, and dollar for dollar the Cub Cadet out performs them all. It's a rugged, easily manueuverable, powerful machine. The reverse tines feature is years ahead of the rest.