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  1. #1
    Silver Member
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    Jun 2005
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    150
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    Western North Carolina
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    Deere CT332 hi-flow

    Default What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    I've been reading through this forum off and on for quite some time now. I've searched every conceivable keyword.
    I've even touched on the issue in my own threads.

    So now, I thought I'd post THE DEFINITIVE thread. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]

    What would be the BEST rough/steep terrain tractor?
    Nothing crazy like a walking excavator. We're talking farm tractors. 4x4 obviously. Locking differentials are good. Many tractors still don't have front lockers standard. It needs to be capable of operating a FEL/grapple and a brush-hog/flail-mower. And let's put a limit of 90hp on the tractor.

    I've been eyeballing all of the major manufacturers, but also Landini, Antonio Carraro, and Power-trac.

    Landini and Antonio Carraro are Italian tractors. I would imagine that makes parts harder to come by. The AC tractors also are limited in the FEL department. In fact, I haven't seen one with a FEL, but a dealer told me that there is one available. That oscillation and reversible operator's station would be nice. The TRG and TGF look quite capable.

    The Power-trac 1460 looks quite interesting, but I'm concerned about the proprietary attachments. You are primarily limited to what Power-trac makes. Plus, you couldn't have it outfitted with a grapple and a brush-cutter at the same time. But the articulation, heavy-duty construction, low COG, and deutz engine are appealing.

    The Massey Ferguson 400 series looks like a strong contender. Lower than most newer-style tractors these days while still maintaining ground clearance. Add in the low-profile versions . . . and you're looking at a pretty stable machine. But it sure would be nice to have some updated features. The Landini Evolution (60 series) appears to be virtually identical to the Massey 400. And this design seems to offer a decent front axle oscillation.

    New Holland TN series looks pretty good too. I would think the Landini Powerfarm would be comparable.

    Nothing in the JD lineup has really called to me. I have gotten the distinct impression that other manufacturers are offering more features/hp per $.

    The new kubota M40s seem to have good potential, but they're still scarce. More than any other, the Kubota lines confuse me about which would be best on steep/rough terrain.

    The Farmtrac 7-series looks pretty robust and capable too, but . . . what little I've seen about them suggests that the new 7-series is expensive.

    I could go on and on. I've checked every manufacturer I've seen mentioned. I've called dealerships. But I'm guessing that the collected experience/knowledge of the people on this board will be able to provide better answers.

    So, peeps, enlighten me!
    [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  2. #2
    Super Member JerryG's Avatar
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    Apr 2000
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    7,219
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    Northwest Arkansas
    Tractor
    MF 1440-4 PowerShuttle

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    For rough terrain go with either a MF 400 series Low Profile or a MF 3300 series. The 3300s are really low and have a very, very low center of gravity. They would need to have the wheels set out or custom wheels made. To bad you can't get a low profile MF industrial with 8' wide axles anymore.

  3. #3
    Silver Member
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    Jun 2005
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    Location
    Western North Carolina
    Tractor
    Deere CT332 hi-flow

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    JerryG, you're my massey expert! I've seen many, many of your posts. And I know you've been with me on this 400 series idea.

    It's a shame that there aren't any Holder tractor dealers in the Southeast. That forestry tractor of theirs looks great (if a bit tall cuz of the cab).

  4. #4
    Super Member JerryG's Avatar
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    Northwest Arkansas
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    MF 1440-4 PowerShuttle

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    How bad is your land?

  5. #5
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    Western North Carolina
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    Deere CT332 hi-flow

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    Well, last week the snow was bad enough to point out my RAM's less than stellar 4x4 system. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]


    Hehe. Glad I've got another full-time 4x4 truck for the rough stuff!

    Anyway, my land is pretty steep. I keep changing my mind about how much I want to accomplish with the tractor. Part of me just wants to maintain the logging roads that are already there. Most of these would be fairly easy to negotiate with a good 4x4 tractor, but . . . there are places that I'm pretty sure a tractor wouldn't go.
    Here's a pic of my buddy on an ATV coming up one of the trails:


    and I'd love to get into some of the areas like this to do some briar control


    It's hard to tell in this picture, but the trail that goes up to the right is pretty steep. I'd love to have something that could tackle that (other than the ATV and my truck)--then I'd be set.


    This is pure fantasy, but I wish I could afford to make some of my property look like this (a neighbor's property)


    Even in that picture you can get a little more feel for the slope.

    The trails I'd want to work are usually cut into the sides like so:


    But you can still tell that there are some inclines to work with.

    Here's an area near the abandoned house-site (from the early 1900s) that I'd love to clean up and keep open.


    Almost tipped the motorcycle over for this one, but it shows the slope pretty well (and this is pretty mild)




  6. #6
    Super Member JerryG's Avatar
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    Northwest Arkansas
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    MF 1440-4 PowerShuttle

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    I think that you are right about needing a LP tractor. I would say that either one of the two above would do as good a job, if not better that most an tractor that you find.

  7. #7
    Elite Member
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    Red Bluff, CA
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    Changes often!

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    A small Komatsu dozer would be the hot ticket. I know that isn't a farm tractor, but you have some steep country!

  8. #8
    Super Star Member Egon's Avatar
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    Aug 2001
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    19,253
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    Ditto on a small wide pad dozer. Tractor just ain't gonna work on most of those hills.

    If you really want to put a tractor on those slopes I'd suggest a full roll cage with metal mesh and a 5 point seat harness. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

    Egon

  9. #9
    Veteran Member
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    Jul 2003
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    1,969
    Location
    Kansas
    Tractor
    2003 BX2200

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    Agree on the small dozer. Wide tracks and low profile. It will help you make trailer MUCH easier.

    Can't help with brands though.

    ron

  10. #10
    Veteran Member
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    Apr 2004
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    Michigan
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    Deere 3720 Cab eHydro , JD 455AWS, JD X749AWS, JD 2720, 2015 Toolcat, Bobcat E42 Excavator, BRP Maverick Max, JD 2032R

    Default Re: What would be the BEST rough terrain tractor?

    I would suggest a tracked skid steer like an ASV-100, I've rented one a few times to do slope work and found it very capable of pushing light soils as well as hauling dirt in the bucket.

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