I'm right there with you Dave. For $600 it should be a drive away deal.A $600 Cub Cadet should be a turn key drive away deal, period.
I don't know what to think of this 1200 yet. One thing that impressed me was the rubber grommet for the spark plug was still there (at least laying next to the spark plug). The Kohler AQS engine needs this grommet for proper air cooling but 95% of the time they are missing (I'm pretty certain Charlie still has hundreds in stock). The next thing I noticed is a "bolt" holding the clutch lever hanger in place. I'm nearly positive that is supposed to be a pin. Makes me think the clutch has had some work not done correctly, but don't know for certain. I do know I just don't like those clutch discs used on the QL units - they always crack. So the clutch is another thing to add to the list of probable items needing work.
And besides all this, if this tractor was running 6 months ago it really shouldn't take much to get it running again - no matter how busy the guy is. Not only run but also drive, and drive good for $600.