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  1. #1
    Bronze Member BurningBushFarm's Avatar
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    Nov 2010
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    WNC
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    YM2000D

    Default Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    Hey -- maybe someone answered this already. Can't find it searching.

    Is there any plus to filling the front tires with water / antifreeze mix?

    We have a YM2000D. Rear tires are weighted with water/anti-freeze mix (tubes in, original tires). Hubby was fixing slow leak in one of my front tires (no tube) and found it had no water in it -- had thought they were filled too.

    It has a FEL. I use that and my bush hog (which I leave on mostly -- good counterweight for FEL work?)

    So -- any thoughts?

    Thanks in advance.
    YM2000D
    1846 QT Bush Hog FEL, 5' bucket
    4' King Kutter (TSC) bush hog
    Pallet forks (bucket/binder mount)
    Anonymous quick hitch, Borrowed REM drag harrow
    Helpful Husband

  2. #2
    Gold Member streamin's Avatar
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    Nov 2006
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    280
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    Conroe, Texas. Franklinville, N.Y.
    Tractor
    Mahindra 5035 HST

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    I'm no expert but I would think it could add more stress for the front steering. not sure I would chance it for what small amount the tires would add up front.

  3. #3
    Veteran Member
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    Southern California
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    International Harvester 284, Yanmar 1401D, Yanmar 240, and others...many others...

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    All of the manuals I've seen for compact tractors explicitly prohibit liquid filling the front tires. On one of my Yanmars I have filled the front tires with liquid ballast, but I have not done so with any of the loader-equipped machines. I don't have any empirical data, but I would rather have the cushioning impact of more compliant, air-filled tires when carrying a heavy load across broken ground than the harsher and more potentially damaging impacts to the front axle components that liquid filled tires would give.

    On my non-loader tractor, it gives a little bit more traction from the front end, and my use doesn't involve the kind of impacts or the loads that a loader-equipped tractor would experience, so I want all the traction I can get. With a loader, if more front weight is needed, I can just scoop up a bucket of dirt, but I feel more comfortable with squishier tires to provide more cushioning to expensive front end components.

    I think the heaviest implement one has is the wisest for safe and effective loader work.

  4. #4
    Elite Member DT86's Avatar
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    SWVA
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    Kubota 9540, RTV 900 and David Brown 885.

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    Unless you are having issues with the front end feeling light I don't see gaining anything.

  5. #5
    Super Member California's Avatar
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    Sonoma County
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    Yanmar YM240, YM186D, and another YM186D

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    I agree with 284, we need to protect the expensive and sometimes unavailable front ends in our Yanmars. So just air, for resiliency, seems best for the front tires.

    On the other hand - The commercial farmers around here recommend water ballast in all tires to improve traction and rollover resistance. This is a bias toward productivity, reasonable since these guys all have spare tractors to put in use if one breaks.

  6. #6
    Bronze Member BurningBushFarm's Avatar
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    YM2000D

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    Thanks guys. Makes sense.

    So the wheel will be on tomorrow and off I will go.

    Merrily, of course.

    YM2000D
    1846 QT Bush Hog FEL, 5' bucket
    4' King Kutter (TSC) bush hog
    Pallet forks (bucket/binder mount)
    Anonymous quick hitch, Borrowed REM drag harrow
    Helpful Husband

  7. #7
    Super Member kenmac's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
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    5,599
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    The Heart of Dixie
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    yanmar 3110D

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    B-4 I had my loader installed ,I had water in the fronts to keep the front on the ground when using the boom pole. Now that I have a loader ,I have no need for water in the fronts only water in the rears
    Yanmar 3110D
    07 Dodge 2500 5.9 Cummins
    Husky 372xp
    Husky 55 Rancher
    Maruyama trimmer
    Husky trimmer
    Redmax BP blower
    Toro zero turn
    North Star 4 K PSI pressure washer
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    16' Tow Master Dump Trailer ,20' Yanmar Hauler

  8. #8
    Super Member Gary Fowler's Avatar
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    Bismarck Arkansas
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    2009 Kubota RTV 900, 2009 Kubota B26 TLB & 2010 model LS P7010

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    Contrary to what a lot of folks post here, a properly filled tire (70-75%) will have the same resiliency as an air filled tire. You leave the 25-30% air cushion at the top so it will compress just like solid air. When properly inflated to the same pressures, you shouldn't see or feel any difference in ride between the two.
    Yes, most CUT manufacturer's recommend not filling the front tires with water as there reason is it promotes wear on the steering components. This could be a somewhate true statement as a weighted tire will take more pressure to turn when not moving especially which could promote some additional wear although turning with a full FEL bucket puts way more stress on the steering components and axle. For the weight you would gain on a small CUT tire (maybe 80 pounds per tire), it really isn't an issue worth investing time in. If you intend to install front weights to gain 100 pounds, I think the water would be a better choice.
    My opinion (and it is just that) is that if adding 100 pounds to the front end will damage the components, then they aren't designed properly to start with.
    2010 LS P-7010C 20F/20R gear tractor & FEL, 2009 Kubota B 26 TLB, RTV 900 Kubota,17 foot Lund boat with 70HP motor, 2012-20 ft 12k GVW trailer, 2011- 52" Craftsman ZTR mower, 2013 Ferris Zero Turn, 3 weed whackers, pressure washer, leaf blowers, 7 foot bush hog, 8 foot landscape rake , 8 foot 3 PH disc, 2 row cultivator, 350 amp Miller AC/DC welding machine and all the tools needed to keep them all repaired and running.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member RDrancher's Avatar
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    Sanger, Texas
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    New Holland TC35D, Case TR320 CTL

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    I ran my old fronts loaded for a few months and noticed no difference in performance whatsoever. It did rut things up with a full bucket a bit more. Not worth the time it took to do it in my opinion. Replacing the fronts with 10 ply SS tires made a huge improvement though!
    John

    My Work & Stuff Photo Thread: http://www.tractorbynet.com/forums/p...to-thread.html

    Slow is smooth, smooth is fast.

  10. #10
    Super Member California's Avatar
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    Sonoma County
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    Yanmar YM240, YM186D, and another YM186D

    Default Re: Ballast front tires on 4WD?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Fowler View Post
    ... promotes wear on the steering components. This could be a somewhat true statement as a weighted tire will take more pressure to turn when not moving
    Without power steering (many people in this Yanmar forum) we aren't as much cautious about stressing steering components as the front drive train. Loaded front tires that improve front traction can increase shock loading when rear tires lose traction. On 30+ year old equipment it doesn't seem a good idea to create stresses beyond the original designer's intent.

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