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  1. #1
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    1,614
    Location
    The County, ME
    Tractor
    Kubota M5640SUD

    Default Is 4WD necessary?

    I've been tractor shopping for almost a year now. Looked at most major brands new and used. I'm leaning toward the Mahindra and in particular the 5525. I'm still new to tractors, though I've managed to pick up a few things along the way of this year long quest.

    I think I need something north of 50 engine horsepower to mow about 50, mostly flat acres and to groom and snowblow a long driveway. I picked up an MF model 41, 7' sickle bar mower this past summer and plan to purchase a brush hog and box blade along with the tractor. The FEL, and blower will likely come later as I feel like I'm biting off quite a bit at this point as it is.

    I've been undecided about whether or not 4WD is necessary. I plan to keep the tractor for the duration so my sense of it is, if 2wd does the job, resale won't be an issue. But while the added cost of 4wd is significant, I don't want to lean too hard on cost and get something that's not completely up to the tasks at hand. I'm very comfortable operating the manual gear transmission.

    My next door neighbor farms a few hundred acres of potato and grain. He says absolutely no need for 4WD. What say you?

    TIA.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member cartod's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    729
    Location
    Northern, West Virginia
    Tractor
    JD 3320, 820,400,255

    Default Re: Is 4WD necessary?

    If you are adding a FEL you should get the 4wd. You will need it.

  3. #3
    Super Star Member RoyJackson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Posts
    18,518
    Location
    Bethel, Vermont
    Tractor
    John Deere 4400 MFWD, Deere 855D UTV, Z920A Zero Turn Mower and assorted implements

    Default Re: Is 4WD necessary?

    Necessary? Probably not. But it will make your work easier for a relatively modest investment. 4WD will also add to resale value, if and when that time comes.
    Roy Jackson

    "Any government that does not trust its citizens with firearms is either a tyranny, or planning to become one."
    -Joseph P. Martino

  4. #4
    Veteran Member weldingisfun's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    1,539
    Location
    West Bell County, Texas
    Tractor
    Mahindra 4500 4WD w/FEL, and Scotts S2048 lawn tractor

    Default Re: Is 4WD necessary?

    Not wanting to sound like a wise a--, but 4WD is only necessary when you need it. Think about your situation, the uses you intend, the weather, the terrain and your budget. Now, think about when it will be needed and you don't have 4WD. What will you do then?

  5. #5
    Elite Member Duffster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    4,372
    Location
    Wisconsin

    Default Re: Is 4WD necessary?

    If you are gettting a loader then I would say 4wd is a no brainer. But still not necessary.
    "If everyone is thinking alike, someone isn't thinking." George Patton

  6. #6
    Veteran Member Deere Dude's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    1,083
    Location
    Hee Haw He!!, TN
    Tractor
    John Deere 3720

    Default Re: Is 4WD necessary?

    Not knowing where you live and the snow conditions, being on flat land for the most part, I don't see why a 4WD is necessary. If you find our later traction is a problem, load the tires. But, many times a smaller tractor can be used for the same job provided it is 4WD. If you get a FEL later, you can still do a lot with a loaded, but maybe not quite as much as a 4WD. Farmers never had 4WD until not all that long ago and they did just fine. I don't know the cost difference between 2WD and 4WD, but if it was close I would still get the 4WD.
    JD 3720 with R4s
    X740

  7. #7
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,270
    Location
    Southern Indiana
    Tractor
    Kubota/B7800

    Default

    If you have any hills, 4wd is a big safety bonus. Gives you braking on all four corners. Not sure where you are located buy I wouldn't buy a tool designed to pull, which has traction as part of its name by the way, and leave about 50% of its capacity on the table.

  8. #8
    Super Star Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    16,193
    Location
    Missouri
    Tractor
    Kubota, John Deere, Case, Massey Ferguson, Ford

    Default Re: Is 4WD necessary?

    We own 4WD and 2WD tractors; on our hill farms 4WD is necessary, but on our flat land farm, it is nice especially with a FEL but not necessary.

  9. #9
    Super Star Member k0ua's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    14,878
    Location
    Branson, Mo.
    Tractor
    Kioti DK35se Hydrostat

    Default Re: Is 4WD necessary?

    Is 4wd necessary? No. It it really really handy? Yes. If you choose a large tractor, load the tires and ballast heavy on the 3pt you can use a loader with 2wd. Will it ever be as good as a 4wd tractor? No. Remember when you load your bucket the first thing that happens is you "unload" the rear tires when you need the them the most. Now go down a steep hill with your loaded bucket, and a light rear end, and watch your rear tires break traction.. It can be a wild ride down that hill Woo Hoo!.. see you at the bottom! With 4WD when you scoop up a load you have the fronts to keep you moving because they are heavily loaded now and have excellent traction. When you go down that hill, they will keep traction with the road and not slip and allow your brakes and/or compression braking to function. You may be thinking, but wait there are no brakes on the front of tractor anyway? Yes but your axles are mechanically hooked together thru the gearing and the drive-shafts and when you brake on the rear by pressing on the brakes or by compression braking from the engine you also slow down the front axle and that braking is applied to the road. You can go up and DOWN much steeper and slipperier surfaces with 4wd than 2wd. When you are nose down with 2wd and you cannot back out you are done. time to get the come-a-long or your "other" tractor. if you have 4wd on tap, just engage 4wd and keep on moving. Also as pointed out a smaller 4wd tractor will do the work of a much larger 2wd tractor and what are "tractors" all about? traction. if you reduce traction, you have less tractor. The flatter the ground you operate on, and the drier conditions you operate in, then the less need for 4wd.

    James K0UA
    James KUA

    Kioti DK35se hydrostat with 2 QA buckets, 48 inch. King Kutter Rotary Cutter. 750 lbs ballast box. Loaded tires, Construction Attachments SSQA Lightweight Pallet forks. EA 50 inch single lid "wicked" Grapple. Satisfied Everlast PA160 welder owner How to add a link to a post . Best way to search TBN


  10. #10
    Elite Member Baby Grand's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    3,619
    Location
    Windsor, CT.
    Tractor
    Kubotas: L3240GST B2320HST B5100D & G5200H

    Default Re: Is 4WD necessary?

    Only time I use 4WD is when I get stuck or think I will in 2WD, which in this clay soil is pretty often.
    That's the problem with trouble.
    It always starts out as such fun."
    - Randall Brown

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