Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements: Tractor Safety  -- General Tractor Discussion Forum and Review Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements: Tractor Safety -- General Tractor Discussion Forum

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 05-08-2003, 11:35 Post: 54526
Chief



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 Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements

Have any of you taken a look at what the owner's manual for your FEL actually calls for?????? I was told by the dealer that the 110 gallons of fluid tire fill was all I needed. After reading a post in another section about FEL ballast and a post from Mark Hunstiger; I review my owner's manual and discovered that the dealer was wrong and that I was actually 1320 lbs. short on ballast for the 3 pt. hitch. I had glanced through the manual earlier but I evidently read it wrong. You all may want to take a second look at what your owner's manual actually says. Could help you avoid joining the "Man of Steel" Club.






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 05-12-2003, 09:57 Post: 54722
Art White



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 Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements

Gentlemen, lighter is better! But we have work to do, and we need weight to get the job done. It is important that somebody with knowledge of the equipment makes some good decisions for you. You don't want to have to weight a tractor for the full weight allowable by the manufacturer if you don't need to. Now, if you own stock in your fuel provider as well as your tractor manufacturer as well as your local dealer do go ahead and ballast fully because by making that heavy you will wear out your drivetrain prematurely, burn more fuel than nessecary for most all of your work and keep both the dealer and manufacturers parts system busy.






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 05-12-2003, 12:00 Post: 54732
DRankin



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 Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements

That is why I use cement blocks. They are cheap, relatively heavy and go on and off in a flash.

Unlike many folks who mow and cut brush, almost all of what I do with my tractors is move dirt.

And like most things there are trade-offs. With my newest new tire set-up on the JD4100, if I keep 500 pounds on the 3 point, I can operate in 2wd 95 percent of the time, saving wear and tear on the drive train (I think?).






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 06-20-2003, 10:52 Post: 58057
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 Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements

Art, my dealer told me to operate in 4wd all the time. Does that sound right to you?? If a tractor's drive train is anything like a 4wd p/u truck then that's bad advise. What is your opinion? I'm a newbie and my thinking is only use 4wd when needed.

Foghorn






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 06-20-2003, 11:31 Post: 58060
Murf



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 Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements

Foggy, unless you live in the mountains, or at least someplace your likely to be 'tractionally challenged' your thinking is not far from the mark, run in 2wd till you need 4wd, or the going gets tough and it's warranted for safety reasons.

Besides if you constantly run in 4wd all the time you will eat up a lot of front tires and probably a few other hard parts.

A lot of the time we are using the loader to 'ferry' sod or trees out to a repair/rebuild site on a golf course, since we are going out with a load on the loader and we need ballast, on the way back the loader is empty and we no longer need the ballast. We combine both needs into one operation.

We run 3pth water tanks, supplied by a pto-powered water pump. When we need ballast we pump the water tank full, pick up the sod or tree(s) and go, when we get to the destination we now have water for the newly installed product. Even if all we are moving is soil we often use this method, but instead sprinkle the water along the pathway to keep the dust down on the return trip.

For home use a plastic drum on a 3pth utility platform would work as wel, a hand pump will fill it in short order and gravity is pretty dependable for emptying it.

Best of luck.






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 06-22-2003, 06:56 Post: 58114
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 Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements

Fog: I don't know which tractor you have. Most 4wd tractors are designed with a front axle lead (the front tires travel a few percent further than the rears). That means the fronts will have some slippage in addition to conventional tire scrubbing. That stresses the front drive train a bit and even more when on high traction surfaces or with heavy weight in the loader (especially if the tractor has turf tires). For most tractors, it's pretty common advice to avoid using 4wd on hard surfaces.






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 06-25-2003, 06:25 Post: 58248
Art White



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 Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements

Fog horn, I would ask him why. Ask him about lead on the front axle and if it would not create stress on the tires and the worst part the drivetrain. Normally even on a well balanced drivetrain you can feel the wind-up with-in a short distance. After you stop and try and disengage the lever it will be difficult. I recommend all you can without it engaged, but if you feel you ae going to need it for what you are doing by all means leave it in.






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 06-25-2003, 08:13 Post: 58256
Misenplace

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 Tractor FEL Ballast Requirements

Murf, do you know of any manufactures who make a pth platform ? I think that sounds like a prettly slick idea. Are you useing steel or plastic drums and how do you drain ? spiget, hose etc ? My owners manual says to only use 4wd when necessary and ditto for the limited slip, although because my tractor is so light I find myself useing both a lot unless just driveing from spot to spot.






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 06-25-2003, 09:21 Post: 58263
DRankin



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Doc, I can send some pics of my 3 pt platform. You can sort of see it in the background of my current #1 Pic.

It was very easy to make- no welding required- and has a 2 inch receiver for a trailer hitch built in.






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 06-25-2003, 12:03 Post: 58272
Misenplace

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Please Do I'd like to see them, its a heck of a good idea.






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