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  1. #1

    Default Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    Among the many issues I'm thinking about regarding tractors is the question of the merits and drawbacks of the two front axle styles.

    I realize that a wide front end is more stable, a requirement for loader operations, and the standard for newer tractors.

    However...

    I am considering getting two units, a loader/backhoe for the grunt work, and a separate tractor for agricultural use. Since my farm is a hobby, and I happen to like old iron, I am thinking about an older unit for field use. Seeing as how there will be no loader on the ag tractor, I'm wondering what the drawbacks to the tricycle front end would be? My land is pretty flat, with no steep hills or other dangerous features, so stability isn't as big of an issue. How about steering effort and turning radius? Are these old non power steering tricycle tractors a bear to turn, or does the ratio and small footprint make up for lack of assist? Also, for a small farm, how much of a pain in the neck does a direct PTO really represent?

    I guess the real question is given my affection for old machines, will I be able to function with a really old (40's or 50's) machine, or would I be better off with something 60's or newer? I realize this is mostly an issue of personal opinion, but the feedback I see here is ALWAYS informative!!

    Thanks

    Gregg

  2. #2
    Super Star Member Egon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    The farmers of the past functioned quite well with the tractors of their times.

    Egon

  3. #3
    Elite Member
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    IH 2444

    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    The tricycle front ends are better for row crop type of useage. You can turn sharper at the end of a row is one big advantage when working row crops.

  4. #4
    Super Member
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    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    LIke Egon said the tricycle front works well for farming. Just stay away from hills. They tip over very easy.

  5. #5
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    Greg, of course I agree with the other guys, but there's another little drawback to the narrow front end that I haven't seen mentioned. Those two wheels and tires that most of the narrow front end tractors have are tilted (in at the bottom or out at the top?). In mud, especially clay, the mud can build up between them to the point that the tires no longer roll; just slide along. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img] The only solution for that I've seen is to just remove one tire and wheel and use the tractor with a single front wheel.

  6. #6
    Silver Member
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    Kansas City, MO
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    JD 4310 MFWD HST

    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    Grew up using my grandfather's Farmall H which was used quite safely and effectively by multiple grandchildren as well as the grandfather in running his farm. The machine is still in the family. It is a tricycle with 2 front wheels. There is nothing like operating this tractor for a person who appreciates old iron.

    On the other hand, it is no comparison to myJD 4310 in terms of ease of operation, safety and ability to get work done.

    Still, if you ask me, hopping on the old H [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] makes me smile even more than the new JD [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

    Just my opinion.

  7. #7

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    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( You can turn sharper at the end of a row )</font>

    One evening when I was a boy helping plant a field close to dark,the guy was running a old farmall with a tricycle front end and went to turn the steering wheel and the bolts holding the front wheels snapped off and the nose of the tractor was stuck in the dirt,we had to go get the jacks/flashlights/cement blocks and the easy outs.

    Talk about a job going bad.

  8. #8
    Super Member
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    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    There is nothing like operating this tractor for a person who appreciates old iron.

    On the other hand, it is no comparison to myJD 4310 in terms of ease of operation, safety and ability to get work done.



    I certainly appreciate what you're saying. I've got a WD-45 that we use on occasion. It was given to me by my grandfather this last year. It is nostalgic to drive and gives you a warm feeling but they are nothing like the new tractors to drive.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member GreenRules's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    I grew up driving a John Deere 50, Farmall Super C and a Farmall 200. The only time I ever wished that I had a wide front end was when I was cultivating sweet corn across a slope. I wasn't worried about tipping, but it was hard to keep the front end from sliding over to the downhill side.
    A wide front end tractor will ride alittle better as the front end will oscillate. Our John Deere 50 had a Rollo-matic front end which was pretty neat. Like anything, you just need to practice common sense. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

  10. #10

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    Kubota B1700 TLB

    Default Re: Wide front end vs. tricycle?

    Gregg
    If you decide to go with the narrow front tires( THUMBS UP TO YOU ) and I do mean THUMBS UP. I haven't driven many narrow front end tractors but the one I did drive when I was a teen ager was a thumb buster. If you had your thumbs wrapped around the steering wheel and those front tires hit a rut the wheel would spin and the spokes on the steering wheel would brake your thumbs. The farmer that let me drive it would allways remind anyone that used it to drive with your thumbs sticking up.

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