Which John Deere lawn tractor? L130 or LT190

I cut about 1.5 achers each week in the deep south... about 8-9 months of the year. I am trying to decide between the L130 (which I had for 8 months before it was stolen last week) and the LT190. The L130 had plenty of power with the Kohler 23HP but I did not like the mulching capabilities of the 48" deck. It left trails of grass and when I backed up, it left a clump in the middle. The question is... Should I spend $1350 more (plus another $125 for the mulching kit) for the LT190. With the LT190, I get a heavier frame, greasable mandrils on the deck, bearings on the front axles instead of plastic bushings, adjustable steering rods, an 18HP Kawasaki engine(5HP less than the L130's Kohler). I believe the difference in displacement is 585cc for the 18HP Kawasaki and 675cc for the 23HP Kohler. Will the smaller Kawasaki have as much torque as the larger Kohler? I am not sure if the transmission is the same on both units. They are both listed as K46 transmissions but they have different part numbers. I do not know if the electric PTO is the same on both models. The electric PTO on my L130 went out after only a few months. I believe the 48" cutting deck on both machines is 11 gauge steel, but they are not identical. Am I missing something else? Is that stuff worth $1350? Will it make the machine last some number of years longer?
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I think the L130 has a 12 gauge deck and the LT's is 11. You sound like me a few months back. I was trying to justify the difference in price between the L130 and the LX280. I finally went with the LX because I have an undulating yard with tight turns and some rough spots. I liked the extra horsepower of the L130 but I really needed the smaller deck (42") that wasn't available on the L130. That plus the heavier gauge deck and frame figures to give me a longer lifetime.
I can tell you that a friend of mine has an LT model with the mulching deck. He swears by it though the JD salesman said that they were prone to problems with their timing belts.
Good luck in making your decision.
John

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Thanks John. I too had a dealer tell me about problems with that 42" mulching only deck. He said they were breaking a lot of belts. I'll likely stick with the standard convertable deck. The L130 just seems like a good value to me. It's hard to justify the additional $1350 plus another $125 for the mulching kit. Also, I do not like the brake pedle on the LT, right beside and above the forward/reverse pedels. It's a little awkward.
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I was told the the mulching deck mulches very well because the blades are on a timing belt and turn in opposite directions but if you hit something hard they can get out of sink and hit each other. Tom

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