Compact Tractor Stability: Tractor Projects  -- General Tractor Discussion Forum and Review Compact Tractor Stability: Tractor Projects -- General Tractor Discussion Forum

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 03-25-2001, 06:36 Post: 25837
gill barlow



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 Compact Tractor Stability

Dear Board:I continue my struggle with picking a compact tractor. My finalists are the KB7500, JD4100 and NHTC18.I am concerned about stability and turning radius. I would like take my tractor in the woods to make trails and pull a tree or two out. I have steep slopes and rough land. I am not doing this commerically. Are these compacts stable enough for this. Some folks are telling me that I need that extra length and width of a 30 hp to do this and yet I want to mow with my tractor and save the money.Are any of the brands substantially more stable than the others?My other question is turning radius. I am not into special turning options. How can I get turning radius info. Is there a brand that is more manuverable?thanks,gill barlowgcbarl@aol.com






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 03-25-2001, 07:51 Post: 25843
TomG

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 Compact Tractor Stability

Gill: Those are real good questions. I'll defer to others who are better at comparing tractors than I am. I will comment that your questions are about safety issues. There are lengthy safety discussion in the archives here and other boards. It's a real good idea to read every thing you can about safety before you get your tractor. To give you a flavour of the subject, there is a think called a tractor run-away. If traction breaks on a hill, you get a wild ride to the bottom if you're lucky. Most times, one wheel will get more traction at some point, the differential counter-rotates, and the tractor flips before you can say what ever it is you say in such circumstances. Brakes are mostly useless, because there already is no traction. If you are unfamiliar with this sort of thing, then reading about it would be very good.






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 03-25-2001, 10:16 Post: 25850
Frank



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 Compact Tractor Stability

Most brands and models of tractors can have the rear tires and rims switched sides so that the rear tire width is wider and thereby safer. My TC35D became
12 inches wider (6 inches per side) by having the dealer switch them before delivery. Some models actully have 3 or 4 widths available by switching the relationship between the hub and the tire. If you leave the FEL on the added weight on the front will keep your front end down. Be careful Frank






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 03-25-2001, 12:52 Post: 25860
Roger L.



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 Compact Tractor Stability

Gill, much as I like the compacts, there are some jobs which are much better left to the full size tractors. Although the full size tractors may only be about 20% wider on tire width, they are close to 50% longer wheel base, and normally about double the weight. I'm not sure exactly why, but my old farm tractor doesn't even notice an incline which causes a severe pucker factor when I'm on the compact. It may be that some of brands of compacts are more stable than others but I sure haven't noticed it and I've tried most.






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 03-27-2001, 08:23 Post: 25954
Dave Wells



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 Compact Tractor Stability

Gill, I have a small compact tractor (JD4100Hydro w/Turf Tires, FEL, Mower, etc. etc.) I think Roger makes a good point about bigger tractors being more appropriate for some jobs. I suspect they truly are more stable in certain situations. Sort of like a Cadillac versus a lil Toyota. But having said that, I've used (and will be using) my 4100 to do what you described - cutting a path through woods (second growth) on my property to make paths and a walkway around the perimeter. I'm using a scarifier, FEL, rake w/grader blade, pulling a dump cart and and 8-ft trailer in and out. Of course I also use it to mow, snowblow, sweep, etc. The benefit of a compact is it's manueverability. I get in and out and around things a lot easier than a 30-40 HP does. It mostly comes down to your experience and practice in operating your tractor. Most dealers have information (visit their websites) about the turning radius of their tractors. I don't know this for sure, but I believe the rule of thumb for any tractor is to not exceed about 18 degrees tilt left or right to prevent rollever. My place is pretty hilly, and I've gotten my tractor tilted pretty far over a time or to - but never rolled over yet. But I PAY ATTENTION, go slow, take my time, watch what I'm doing. There's nothing that I'm doing here that's worth rolling my tractor over. For that matter, there's nothing I'm doing here that's worth anyone getting even scratched. Another benefit of using a compact tractor is that it's "easier on the land", ie. doesn't tear the soil up as bad, cause ruts, etc.






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 03-27-2001, 09:46 Post: 25958
Ted Kennedy



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 Compact Tractor Stability

Gill, compact tractor owners are not exempt from Darwin's theory of natural selection. Operating these machines in less than a thoughtful manner can result in some form of penalty (see Murph's latest on "Sticky..."Wink yeah right. No matter what you buy, you'll have to accept its limitations, and not excede them. You'll be amazed at the versatility of the compact, but it may not be the right tool for the job you have in mind. I, like most people, don't have a built-in inclinometer - what looks like so many degrees of incline may in fact be much more. This is why you should mow up, and down, a steep slope whenever possible. "Ridge Running" is not for the faint of heart. Your homework has narrowed you down to several excellent machines, have you asked the dealers for an on-sight demo? Most dealers will be glad to let you try running the machine at your place, under their supervision, and you'd be surprised at how much you'll learn about the dealer and his product from this experience. This could help you narrow the field in a hurry. Longer wheelbase machines have some advantages over compacts, Cat D11's have some advantages over D6's, where do you draw your line? My best suggestion to you is "try before you buy."






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