Metal vs Plastic: Size Tractor Needed  -- General Tractor Discussion Forum and Review Metal vs Plastic: Size Tractor Needed -- General Tractor Discussion Forum

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 08-06-2003, 13:31 Post: 61084
BountyHunter



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 Metal vs Plastic

Does anyone have an opinion on metal bodies (hood, fenders) etc... like Kubota vs their plastic counterparts like Deere, or New Holland? I am looking to purchase something in the 30-35 hp range in the near future and just wondered what everyone thought.

Thanks






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 08-06-2003, 14:05 Post: 61085
kwschumm



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 Metal vs Plastic

This debate comes up all the time, and both sides have their believers, but I don't think there will ever be a winner.

The believers in metal believe that it is more substantial and will last forever. I agree that it feels more substantial, however in our heavily wooded area the tractors with metal body panels look pretty beat up. The panels are often dented and the paint is badly scratched with many starting to rust.

Most of the plastic body panels seem to be holding up fine. However, those that are stored outside are starting to show their age a bit because the plastic panels slowly deteriorate with UV exposure.

In my opinion this is the LAST thing to worry about when making a tractor purchase. I went with JD and plastic body panels and have no regrets so far. Although I've only had my tractor for six weeks or so I've crashed through lots of fir branches and thorny brush and have no scratches whatsoever to show for it.

For what it's worth, somebody who said he was in the industry posted a message a couple of months ago saying that the plastic panels actually cost more to manufacture than metal stampings, so I'm not sure plastic equates to cheapness on the part of the manufacturer.






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 08-06-2003, 14:59 Post: 61088
plots1

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 Metal vs Plastic

I have a metal paneled deere 790 and it has a few dings already from mowing trails through timber, had to touch up a few spots to keep rust at bay also. plastic is probley a good thing for longer life with less maintance, although when plastic get's cold it is more opt to just break off or crack when going through timber instead of just denting. you make the choice.






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 08-06-2003, 14:59 Post: 61089
Murf

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 Metal vs Plastic

As was stated before, it's mostly personal preference.

Having said that I do think that just as with cars, etc., the odd little ding is going to happen and the plastic does seem to stand up to that a little better.

Best of luck.






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 08-06-2003, 15:02 Post: 61091
Billy

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 Metal vs Plastic

Ken is right, this debate will go on forever.

I would like to add my story. I had a JD 4600, with the plastic. I was mowing up against an old fence, grown up with polk bushes. I couldn't see the fence but knew it was there. I was going right along when all of a sudden, this 5 foot 2 by 10 flew out in front of me. The board had came loose from the post and was sticking out just enough to catch the edge of my plastic fender. The fender had broken the board in half (it was 10 ft long). It did put about an inch long crack in the fender. I do believe if it had been a metal fender, it would have ripped it loose. I don't know that to be a fact but that's my thinking.

I did swap that 4600 2WD collar shift in on a 4610 4WD eHydro with FEL. So you see, plastic doesn't bother me.

What it boils down to is, what would you prefer?






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 08-06-2003, 15:37 Post: 61094
AC5ZO

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 Metal vs Plastic

The body on my NH tractor is plastic and I really like it. I also have a Hummer H2 and the hood and front fenders of that are made of the same plastic that they have been using on Corvettes and other high performance cars for years.

It holds up well. No dings on either.






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 08-07-2003, 07:01 Post: 61129
Misenplace

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 Metal vs Plastic

This is one of those debates that is never ending. Its like trying to decide who makes the "best" oil. Once you narrow your choices down I think most of us would agree there are going to be far bigger choices than metal Vs Plastic. It really is a non-issue. But if it is important to the purchaser I think you can end the debate with two words...Personal Preference.






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 08-08-2003, 04:47 Post: 61198
TomG

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 Metal vs Plastic

I wonder what happened to cross-bonded polymer plastics. They're supposed to retain a memory for the shape in which it was molded. In the early 70's I saw a TV news story where the stuff was demonstrated. A typical rowboat was dropped bow first from fair height. The bow was crumpled. A guy with a blowtorch started heating the bow and it just popped back in shape. Seemed like a good idea but I never saw anything more about it.






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 08-08-2003, 09:43 Post: 61231
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 Metal vs Plastic

If it was available I'd opt for that Roswell metal. What's Roswell metal you ask? That's the mysterious metal they allegedly found at the Roswell UFO sight that sprung right back to it's original shape when crumpled up.






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 08-08-2003, 11:38 Post: 61252
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 Metal vs Plastic

Thats probably the stuff that they make those memory wire glasses frames out of






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