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  1. #11
    Veteran Member daTeacha's Avatar
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    Oct 2005
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    2,352
    Location
    Funk, Ohio

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    Doc -- As in most questions asked here, it depends on how you use your tractor, what you are doing at any given time, and the conditions under which you are doing it.

    With just 45 hours on my tractor, I notice the front tires are showing wear. Reason? I need 4wd moving loads around the property, and do a lot of that moving on my hard gravel over packed crusher run driveway. I transition from that hard surface to soft/semi muddy ground with every load, so leave it in 4wd, but the driveway is wearing my front tires. . I could run across the lawn instead of the driveway, but that tears up the grass in a hurry with Ags mounted on a 4400 lb tractor with 800 or so lb in the bucket.

    I don't mow, but if I did, I would try 2wd first since the tires are on top of the ground, not pushing through soft plowed ground. If it was wet enough to need 4wd, I probablyh would stay off the lawn, even with turfs. If I was doing real farm work -- plow, disc, cultivator, etc., I would probably use 4wd for the traction increase and to spread the pulling load over more drivetrain components.

    Many tractor 4wd systems are front wheel ASSIST and not true 4wd like in a car or truck. Even there, many different systems are around, but relatively few are intended for full time 4wd operation -- Subaru is one I can think of offhand -- since it simply takes more energy to spin all those gears and shafts when 2wd will get the job done.

    My opinion is to use 4wd only when it is needed, as indicated by the rears spinning or the fronts plowing sideways when you would prefer to turn. You'll very quickly learn to recognize the conditions under which 4wd will be of benefit, whether for braking, turning, or pulling. Any other time, use 2wd.

  2. #12
    Gold Member BamaRob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    464
    Location
    Alabama
    Tractor
    Mahindra 2615 4WD

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    Mine's in 4WD all the time unless I'm on the lawn or pavement. I'd be interested in seeing some manufacturer's suggestions in regards to this topic.

    BR

  3. #13
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    154
    Location
    MA North Shore
    Tractor
    Kubota BX1500

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    Probably nothing new I'm going to say here, but:

    I tend to operate in 2WD unless I need 4WD.
    With a little experience, you pretty much know when you'll need 4WD.
    As was said, when mowing, 4WD is out. However, there is one place on my property where I need it to get up a hill without wheel spin. I do that hill with the steering pointed straight, so there is no front tire scrubbing. I switch back to 2WD at the top.

    Something learned while four-wheeling trucks (both intentionally and unintentionally): By running in 2WD as long as possible, you can use 4WD as a way out. Once you get stuck in 4WD, you're done - or in for a lot of work.

    All said, if you understand what happens in both modes, the selection between them makes sense, and becomes "obvious".

  4. #14
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    370
    Location
    Merrimack county, NH
    Tractor
    JD 110 TLB

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( Once you get stuck in 4WD, you're done - or in for a lot of work )</font>

    But your truck didn't have a FEL or a backhoe [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

  5. #15
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Posts
    1,534
    Location
    Blair, Ne.
    Tractor
    L3130

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    I don't see how running a tractor in 2wd is going to hurt anything. I'm assuming you have a lever or button to switch between modes.

    My L3130 stays in 2wd unless needed or is helpfull. For example...mowing across a 15-20 deg slope in 2wd the back has a tendancy to slip. Its only a tiny bit but enough that you can tell. Put in 4wd and its helpfull by getting rid of any tire slippage then once off the slope it goes back into 2wd.

    Pulling a BB can be done in 2wd but as the box fills up there is tire slippage so 4wd takes the speed back up .5 mph when the slip becomes noticable. So its more efficient in this case to just use 4wd for anything except skimming. Where as mowing is generaly more efficient to use 2wd, for me anyway.

    I have noticed a soft field where your pushing/pumping dirt with the front tires its better to use 4wd.

  6. #16
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    254
    Location
    Talladega county, Sylacauga, AL
    Tractor
    Yanmar YM2020D Satoh Beaver III Yanmar 1500

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    Almost all mechanically driven 4wd tractors use a slight overrun of front to rear in 4wd. (a small amount of front wheel slippage will always occur). If the wheels cannot slip a little it will dammage the frive line..

  7. #17
    Veteran Member IH3444's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,760

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    I only put the TC48 into 4wd when needed, or safety with braking is needed. Mostly run around in 2wd. Mine is 4 wheel assist. Your TN maybe true 4wd.

  8. #18
    Super Member JerryG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    7,217
    Location
    Northwest Arkansas
    Tractor
    MF 1440-4 PowerShuttle

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    The manufactures association lists these tractors as 2wd with front assist. They were designed as 2wd and adding the front drive axle was an after thought just like loaders were. Running is 2wd is normal and doesn't hurt anything.

  9. #19
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    541
    Location
    Brookeville, MD
    Tractor
    TC33D

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    I use 2WD most of the time. However, as mentioned above, it's easy to end up with too little weight on the rear wheels doing FEL work. If you are on a slope you can end up with the rears locked up and the front rolling free down the hill. Switching to 4WD is one more safety item to keep in your head.

  10. #20
    Gold Member BamaRob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
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    464
    Location
    Alabama
    Tractor
    Mahindra 2615 4WD

    Default Re: pros and cons to running a 4WD tractor in 2WD

    Sounds like I may need to change my practice and run in 2WD unless 4WD is needed. Thanks for the postings, everyone.

    BR

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