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  1. #11
    Veteran Member wmonroe's Avatar
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    Nov 2005
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    Southwestern, PA
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    1958 Ford 961 Powermaster

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    Quote Originally Posted by JimRB View Post
    I have used a 2x4 for 17 years with a loader. Farm before that had a 2wd tractor. Once in a while I get annoyed at not having 4x4 when trying to bring compost up out of the low spot where it composts to a customer's truck. South of Savannah maybe your property is relatively level like mine. My neighbor has two 2wd tractors and he makes hay, moves manure, and mows. His neighbor has two 4x4 machines to make hay. Lots of people using 2x4 tractors but they usually have old heavy tractors that do not need 4wd to work. Lightweight tractors sometimes do better with 4wd. Sometimes it is a question of what you can find at the dealer or in the Georgia Market Bulletin.
    Like you said if the property is relatively flat than 4x4 is a luxury, but if there are steep hills involved it is required. I have an old 2wd tractor with rear ballast (and no loader) and there is some equipment I won't take down some of my hills just because when the rear tires start to slip I'm in trouble, it's even worse going down that hill with a heavy load in the bucket.
    Kubota L5240 with loader and backhoe

    1958 Ford 961 Powermaster LP

  2. #12
    Platinum Member
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    Sep 2010
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    688
    Location
    Eastern Ontario
    Tractor
    Kubota MX5100

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    For maintaining a garden and bushing hogging the fence line, a 2x4 would be fine. It's usually when you have the tractor that you find additional uses for it and if that involves any interesting terrain, snow, mud, etc., that is when 4x4 shines. I personally would not buy a tractor without it but that is all I have had plus my tasks require it. A lot of farmers have gotten along fine with 2x4 for many years so it all goes back to what you plan to use the tractor for.
    2011 Kubota MX5100, BH92, BH BB72, Walco Bush Hog and Snowblower, Wallenstein 310 Splitter & Forks

  3. #13
    Elite Member ovrszd's Avatar
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    May 2006
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    4,204
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    Missouri
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    Kubota M9540, JD2210

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    Quote Originally Posted by GManBart View Post
    For loader work the FWA makes a big difference, but your tire selection also has a significant impact on overall ability. My LS and Massey are 47hp and 48hp machines of similar weight, the LS has FWA with R4 tires, and the Massey is 2wd with R1 tires. I've worked the exact same area (essentially flat) that had some muddy spots, on the same day, with both machines, and the LS with R4s was slipping, and sliding, where the Massey just cruised right through. I was able to get by with the LS, because of the FWA, but it still wasn't as good as the Massey with the R1s?part of the reason I have each machine set up with different tires. You can put R1s on a FWA machine, but they aren't as good for doing loader work on dry/flat surfaces because they have a much smaller contact patch (less stability). I guess that's a long way of saying there isn't any one perfect answer?either is a compromise.
    I agree concerning the difference in R4/R1 tires. But in this case I think you are comparing two completely different tractor designs. The Massey's weight ratio is probably 70% rear/30% front, maybe even 80/20. The LS is real close to 50% front/50% rear. So the Massey in 2wd becomes very effective. Then add the difference in tires and you get the results you saw.

    To the OP, if you are buying a 2wd, go for an AG tractor. What you get is the weight ratio I talked about above. That's why they are somewhat effective with an FEL. They, by design, carry a large percentage of their weight on the rear tires. A 2wd CUT is not designed that way.
    Richard
    Kubota M9540, JD2210

  4. #14
    Veteran Member
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    Apr 2011
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    Erie Pa.
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    Montana R4944, Ford Jubilee, Ford 621, Ford 841

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    No matter what if you get a 2x4 with a loader you have to have weight in the rear or you are not going to go anywhere! My old ford has a backhoe on the rear so when it is on it's a beast, but if I take the backhoe off and try to use the FEL forget it as soon as I pickup a load in the bucket it just sits there and spins even with R1 tires (not loaded) it's kind of embarrassing! Oh yea as mentioned before power steering with a loader is an absolute must!
    Montana R4944
    Ford Jubliee, Ford 841, Ford 621 industrial with FEL & BH

  5. #15
    Veteran Member nybirdman's Avatar
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    Feb 2009
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    1,910
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    north of upstate ny
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    Kubota L4240 HSTC,L3000DT

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    Go with 4WD,it's like adding 10 HP.Also get the AG(R1) tires.

  6. #16
    Veteran Member GManBart's Avatar
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    Belleville, MI
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    Ford 8N, LS R4047H, Massey Ferguson 241, Hustler Sport ZTR

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    Quote Originally Posted by ovrszd View Post
    I agree concerning the difference in R4/R1 tires. But in this case I think you are comparing two completely different tractor designs. The Massey's weight ratio is probably 70% rear/30% front, maybe even 80/20. The LS is real close to 50% front/50% rear. So the Massey in 2wd becomes very effective. Then add the difference in tires and you get the results you saw.
    That's an interesting point about front/rear weight distribution. With the FEL on the LS, it probably changes the weight distribution significantly, and adds a lot to the front. I'd bet that if you took the FEL off, it might be closer to the way the Massey is balanced. I know the people at the local scrap yard (2mi away) pretty well, and when the weather is better, I might see if they'll let me weigh my tractors so that I can see how they're balanced...and I'd love to know how close the factor specs are to reality.

    Still, I was pretty surprised at how much slipping, and sliding I was getting in 4wd compared with the Massey just rolling along with almost no wheel spin at all....really made it obvious how much the R1s are better when it gets sloppy.

  7. #17
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    Central Ohio
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    Kubota l3400

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    The FEL is 10x's more useful with 4wd
    ".........there is only one way to find out."
    "Ok, hold my beer and watch this.........."


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  8. #18
    Elite Member ovrszd's Avatar
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    Missouri
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    Kubota M9540, JD2210

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    Quote Originally Posted by GManBart View Post
    That's an interesting point about front/rear weight distribution. With the FEL on the LS, it probably changes the weight distribution significantly, and adds a lot to the front. I'd bet that if you took the FEL off, it might be closer to the way the Massey is balanced. I know the people at the local scrap yard (2mi away) pretty well, and when the weather is better, I might see if they'll let me weigh my tractors so that I can see how they're balanced...and I'd love to know how close the factor specs are to reality.
    I weighed my M9540 with FEL and 7' standard bucket, loaded rears, cast iron centers in rear wheels. It weighed 10lbs more on the front than the rear. How bad would that have been without 1350lbs of fluid and 700lb cast iron centers on the rears??

    When it warms up a bit I'll remove the FEL and weigh it again. Gotta road it about 2 miles to a scale. I think it'll still be wayyyy more heavy in the front than your Massey (weight ratio).

    Yep, I'm still with ya on the R1 versus R4 discussion.
    Richard
    Kubota M9540, JD2210

  9. #19
    Veteran Member GManBart's Avatar
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    Belleville, MI
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    Ford 8N, LS R4047H, Massey Ferguson 241, Hustler Sport ZTR

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    Quote Originally Posted by ovrszd View Post
    I weighed my M9540 with FEL and 7' standard bucket, loaded rears, cast iron centers in rear wheels. It weighed 10lbs more on the front than the rear. How bad would that have been without 1350lbs of fluid and 700lb cast iron centers on the rears??

    When it warms up a bit I'll remove the FEL and weigh it again. Gotta road it about 2 miles to a scale. I think it'll still be wayyyy more heavy in the front than your Massey (weight ratio).

    Yep, I'm still with ya on the R1 versus R4 discussion.
    Wow....pretty dramatic numbers. Among other things, it could be all the extra steel forward of the middle to support the loader mounts etc. Now I just gotta weigh mine!

  10. #20
    Elite Member ovrszd's Avatar
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    Kubota M9540, JD2210

    Default Re: 4x4 vs 2x4

    Quote Originally Posted by GManBart View Post
    Wow....pretty dramatic numbers. Among other things, it could be all the extra steel forward of the middle to support the loader mounts etc. Now I just gotta weigh mine!
    Yep. That's why anything with an FEL on, other than an AG tractor, is pretty much worthless in 2wd. Think how front heavy my tractor would have been without cast centers and fluid!!!! My Brother's L3240 kubota with FEL has loaded rears but still won't back up any kind of hill in 2wd.

    So to the OP, if you're gonna buy 2wd with FEL, go for an AG tractor. By design they carry most of their weight on the rear tires.
    Richard
    Kubota M9540, JD2210

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