"A Case IH 495 came with the property I purchased. ItÃ¢Â€Â™s the first tractor I've owned or operated so take that into account.
The Case IH 495 is a conventional compact utility or small agriculture tractor. The one I'm reviewing is a three cylinder 2.9 liter naturally aspirated engine driving MFWD through a four speed two-range conventional gear box. The engine makes 53 horsepower and 43 is available at the power take-off. It has about 1100 hours on it.
It has a Cat II hitch and a factory loader. There is one rear remote with room for two others. There is an ether starting system integral to the machine but even in below freezing weather it starts without the ether. Electrical equipment is limited to a 7-pin trailer hookup, high/low headlights, a rear work light, and signal lights.
Hydraulic capacity is 8 gallons of combined transmission and hydraulic oil, hydraulic capacity is rated at 15.6 GPM standard or 16.4 GPM optional. I don't know which is fitted to my machine. 3-point horizontal lift is listed as 3700 lbs.
The weight is listed as 5200 lbs. With filled rear tires, backhoe, and FEL I estimate it as close to 8000 lbs combined.
The Case IH 495 was manufactured in Doncaster UK in the early to mid-'90s. Go read a bit about industrial labor relations and the English industrial sector at that time to get a sense of the build quality. It is generally made of very high quality materials and components but the fit, finish, and assembly is poor. This tractor features Lucas electrics.
In our uses; woods work, light construction, road work, and general small farm uses; its proved to be very robust, more than powerful enough, and has never been limited by its capabilities. It has been limited in its usefulness in two ways. First, operator environment and ease of operation is only fair. Controls are often difficult to engage and operate, the loader valve linkages were too worn out to repair and the entire valve was replaced, a lot of care must go into mounting the seat without slipping or being banged up on some exposed metal of the operators station. I have replaced the original suspension seat with an inexpensive aftermarket suspension seat. The original seat had rusted and degraded beyond repair, the smaller aftermarket seat fits and works very well and leaves a bit of room on the operator platform to have a few things like with you like gloves or water. There are no places of any kind to keep anything on the tractor. The three-point hitch has a nice set of adjustments but no convenience; everything to be done on the hitch requires contortions, swinging large tools in confined spaces, and several non-standard brand-specific pins and linkages.
The stack exhaust creates a situation in very slow going, like road or groundwork, and little wind of making the operator sit in an exhaust cloud. On the other hand, even in very cold and rainy weather with the heat of the exhaust and canopy its very comfortable even for long periods.
The second limiting factor has been repair and maintenance. I believe this is specific to this particular machine. We have had a large amount of downtime waiting for parts, filters, fluids, fasteners, and other items to keep the tractor in running and working shape. I believe everything is caught up with now and with regular and prescribed care it will be reliable but will need to see.
We've used the tractor extensively for hauling logs out of the woods, and for moving materials around including using the loader for excavation in heavy wet clay. A tooth bar on the loader makes a huge difference in digging ability. Its been up to the axels in saturated heavy clay, while pulling a 78" box blade, completely filled with the same saturated clay and hasn't slowed down.
The Case IH 495 is a basic conventional tractor with substantial capabilities. Its best uses will be in ag applications including ground engaging and small to mid-sized haying operations. It isn't well suited to loader work because of the constant shifting, tight areas, or sensitive ground. Its ability to use Cat II implements and substantial PTO power mean it can punch above its weight class when needed. The MFWD and differential lock make this machine unstoppable. In one case we had a gravel dump truck get stuck facing downhill and unable to reverse, just spinning its wheels. We were able to pull this 40,000 lb. truck and gravel load out with the tractor, in the mud and uphill. That was at the very edge of its capabilities but itÃ¢Â€Â™s the only time I've seen this machine struggle.
Most criticism of this type of machine are not specific to the machine but to its suitability for an intended use. If you want a HST then you don't want this gear tractor, if you want to operate on turf then you don't want this machine, if you're going to be doing mainly construction work then you probably don't want this either. If you're doing ag work, if you're logging, or working on roads, then this is a great machine.