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  1. #1
    Silver Member
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    Jul 2001
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    NW of St. Louis, MO area
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    B2150DT

    Default Loaded tires dilema

    I have unloaded turf tires on my kubota B2150. I mostly use the tractor for mowing my 3-acre lawn. When I bought the tractor, it came with loaded R-1 (ag) type tires. I use the R-1's for loader work. Also, the in-laws have a 150-acre "recreation" farm. Before I trailer my tractor there, I swap over to the R-1 tires. The ballast in the R-1's is calcium choride (I'm thinking, it's kinda tan colored). Anyway, both rear rims have large rust chunks around the valve hole. When I brought the tractor home this last weekend from the farm, there was a small amount of fluid leaking out of the valve hole area. I swapped over to the turf's (because I had mowing to do!), and checked out that leaky tire/rim. I unscrewed the valve cap and the valve was completely full of white, hard powder. Next, the valve stem broke off! BTW, there are tubes in these tires, so the stem is all brass. I drained the fluid and have it in a drum right now.

    Here's my dilema: Do I repair/replace the rims, get new tubes and just refill with the saved CaCl, or use something else? These tires are 12.4-16, so a 75% fill would only be 200lbs ea. of CaCl, so antifreeze/water or washer fluid won't cut it (around 140lbs ea.). Also, it seems that CaCl is corrosive to the brass vavle stems. Has anyone had trouble with CaCl loaded tires and vavle stems. Someone here says that he replaces his valve cores every year. I've read about Rim Guard here on TBN, but it seems that it's hard to find outside of Michigan. I think Miller Tire and/or Gempler's might have it. I'll have to check my catalogs at home, but shipping this stuff woulld be outragous! Lastly, I do all my own work, so cost is quite a concideration. That's why I'm contemplating refilling with the saved CaCl.

    What would you do?

  2. #2
    Veteran Member
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    2003 Kubota L3430

    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    I don't have any actual experience with this situation, but I just happened to have the Goodyear Farm Tire Handbook here next to me. It states that CaCl will not corrode a rim unless a wet rim comes in contact with air. This could happen if your tube leaked and fluid flowed down between the tube and rim, or if the fluid leaked out of the valve stem and dribbled down around the valve stem hole. Maybe you can tell whether the corrosion came from the inside or outside the rim. Perhaps both. The Handbook makes the common sense points that a rim exposed to CaCl must be scrubbed and washed "immediately" in order to prevent "extremely rapid" corrosion. Also, any corrosion, rust or other damage should be wire brushed off and cleaned before remounting a tire.

    I think you have four issues.

    1. Should you use new tubes? I would. There may be leaks and the valve cores are obviously shot.

    2. Should you get new rims? That could be quite expensive. Hundreds of dollars. New tubes will contain the fluid, so I think the real issue is whether the rims will be structurally sound and true, especially around the bead, after you clean them. That's a judgment call. Perhaps you could show them to a tire professional.

    3. Should you refill with CaCl or something else? The only something else's for cold climates that I know of are washer fluid (not heavy, as you note), Rim Guard "beet juice" (rare and probably expensive), or Arnco superflex foam (very expensive). Some people avoid CaCl for environmental and toxicity reasons--i.e., spills will kill grass or other vegetation. I don't have that concern, myself. To me, it's just salt water, and CaCl is spread all over the streets here in the N.E. after every snowstorm. But different strokes for different folks.

    4. If you decide to stay with CaCl, should you reuse the old stuff? I don't see why you couldn't, other than the fact that you don't seem to know what it really is. I have no idea how expensive CaCl is, but if it isn't too expensive I would be inclined to remix a new batch at the proper concentration for your winter climate just so I knew what I had in my tires and that it was done right.

    You can download the Goodyear Farm Tire Handbook in PDF format. It has a section at the end of the book on mixing CaCl fill, and the proper way to load and drain tires.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    Glenn has it right. Just to add a couple of points on my own though. Before refilling tires with anything inspect the rims and clean and paint any rusty areas with a good rustkiller/paint. Do use new tubes. And I see no reason not to use the Calcuim Chloride soloution that you removed. The stuff is not cheap, about $1.00/LB.
    Sorry if I doubled up on any of your statements Glenn, It is early.

  4. #4
    Silver Member
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    NW of St. Louis, MO area
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    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    Thanks, guys, for the suggestions. I will check the rims for damage and buy new tubes. I'm still kinda leary of the brass in the stems, but if I replace the valve cores every year, maybe I can keep a check on them. I wonder if CaCl can be tested for freeze point with an engine coolant tester? I'll try it and let you know. I agree that CaCl is not cheap, so I really want to re-use it. I think I'll search for Rim Guard a little bit more, then just use my old CaCl.

  5. #5
    Veteran Member hayden's Avatar
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    Kubota L5740 cab + FEL, Cat D5G dozer, Kubota KX121 excavtor

    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    $1.00/pound for CaCl? Wow that's more than I expected. I filled my front tires with SuperFlex to the tune of $1.40/lb, and I thought it was much more expensive than CaCl, though I've never actually prices CaCl.

    If it's 40% more expensive, I'd consider the superflex.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    Not to pound this topic to death, but let's not be pennywise but pound foolish.

    You pay for foam by how many pounds of actual foam get pumped into the tire. As a fellow 2910 owner, I'm curious as to how many pounds of foam each of your front tires took, Peter. I have gotten quotes here in CT for $1.00 per pound for foam.

    The CaCl is mixed with water. The water provides most of the weight. A solution of 3.5 pounds of CaCl per gallon of water will be slush free to -12 degrees F. A solution of 5 pounds per gallon will be slush free to -52 degrees F. John has a 12.4 x 16 tire. Here are the requirements to fill that tire 75% full (top of the rim). For a 3.5 lb./gal. solution, that tire will require 63 lbs of CaCl and 18 gallons of water, providing a total fill weight of 213 lbs. For a 5 lb./gal. solution, that tire will require 85 lbs of CaCl and 17 gallons of water, providing a total fill weight of 227 lbs.

    All these figures are courtesy of the aforementioned Goodyear Farm Tire Handbook. So multiply those CaCl poundage requirements by the price of CaCl crystals. Water, I assume, is free.

  7. #7
    Super Member
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    Cedartown, Ga and N. Ga mountains
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    1998 Kubota B21, 2005 Kubota L39

    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    John, one additional note. You said that there was rust around the valve stem hole in the rim. When the tire is removed you need to check and see how much rusting has happened at that point. If to much, you can have a problem with a new tube getting cut by thin metal at the stem hole. It is not uncommon to weld and grind a patch over this hole and drill a new one to save the rim. Hopefully your is just surface rust and you noticed it in time.

    MarkV

  8. #8

    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    <font color="blue"> You pay for foam by how many pounds of actual foam get pumped into the tire. As a fellow 2910 owner, I'm curious as to how many pounds of foam each of your front tires took, Peter. I have gotten quotes here in CT for $1.00 per pound for foam. </font>

    That sounds like about what I paid for the foam filling of my front tires on my B2910. I paid something like $65 each. I was quoted $247 [each] for the back tires if I wanted to have them foam filled but used WW fluid instead.

    Not sure of the number of lbs of foam that went into those front tires, but they sure got heavy!

  9. #9
    Veteran Member hayden's Avatar
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    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    If the $1/lb figure is for CaCl BEFORE mixing, then everything makes sense. I always thought foam was several times more expensive than CaCl solution, and that would still be the case.

    My front tires took about 70-75lbs each. I went for foam over liquid because I was getting flats frequently so I killed two birds with one stone. The extra weight in the front helps, but it's not a huge difference. $1 per lb is a good price, at least compared to around here.

  10. #10
    Veteran Member Rowski's Avatar
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    North Central Vermont, Jay Peak Area
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    2004 New Holland TN70DA with 32LC loader, 2000 New Holland 2120 with Curtis cab, 7309 loader

    Default Re: Loaded tires dilema

    I had a similar problem with my rear tires.

    Overloaded loaded tires

    Here is my solution. Rim Guard Near the end of the thread are some pictures of my rusty rim and my "loading" setup.

    I'll never use calcium chloride again!

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