Be wary of industrial bar tread

Kubota Newbie

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Dec 28, 2010
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Just came home from the County Fair and was noticing something on many of the new compact utilities (Kubota included). Most of them are being offered with the industrial/loader type bar tread tires rather than traditional ag bar tread tires of the same size. I don't think they're doing this out of the goodness of their hearts. Why? because the bar height on the loader type tires was significantly shorter than the normal ag bars. I think if your dealer gives you the choice for even cost I'd choose the ag bar tread over the industrial/loader bar tread because you're getting taller bars.
Taller bars = longer tire wear, and probably better traction in soft conditions. I'm betting their cost on the loader type bar tires is lower because there's less rubber in them. Yeah, the squarish profile and "beefy looking" bar shape on the loader type tires looks good, but there isn't very much room there for wear before you'll be thinking you need a new set rubber.
 

Eric McCarthy

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If these R4's are what your talking about, they are the way to go now a days and almost everybody wants them. You get the same traction as old school ag's but no ruttin on soft areas like lawns.
 

firejunkie

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Kubota Mx4700 4w/FEL, Modern Ag cutter,Dirt dog Box blade and Rake, Custom forks
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Ag tires are good for traction but are very soft and the compound and ply ratings are lower for traction.but are not good on hard surfaces, and harder dry ground your taller "bars" will wear faster

Industrial tires are for long wear on harder surfaces with good traction in the mud, they also are a higher ply rating and cost more (hence the price hike)most industrial and commercial equipment use industrial tires for a reason, and the same reason they are on my incoming tractor.Also the wider track and increased surface area increase you floatation in wet conditions, and lessen surface impact on more sensitive spots like grass.We get a 1000+ hrs on a set of tires on most of our equipment at work.
 
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Kubota Newbie

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Yeah, those, or Titans, or whatever the other brands were, they were all about the same. Bars are mighty short, & no clearance for the tire to self clean in muddy conditions. I'm willing to bet side by side in medium soft or wet soil conditions that the ag bars will will walk away from the loader type tires (just the opinion of an old farm boy & tractor puller).
Besides, these weren't lawn mower size tractors we're talking about, they were small farm/compact utilities, meant to be doing at least some semi-serious work. You wear a half an inch off those tires and they're worn out (from a traction standpoint), wear a half off a regular height ag bar and it's only half worn out.
FJ - ply ratings on these were same as the next tractor over with ag tires.
I think if you were buying heavy duty backhoe or end loader tires you would have a good point about the compound and ply rating. But I don't think that's what they're selling people for their compact tractors. I think they're selling you less rubber for the same or higher price. If I recall some of Ohio State University's soil compaction field studys correctly, size for size the ground contact footprint/flotation for either tire would be similar, and the pressure exerted on the soil would be the same, even though the profile looks different. Tire size mattered less from a soil compaction standpoint than did the total axle load (I know, that doesn't make sense). Probably could google the info, Randall Reeder was the OSU proff who did the studies.

BTW, According to the Michelin Ag Data Handbook. The gross flat plate area measured at maximum load and pressure for their R1 ag style AGRIBIB TL 16.9-28 is 262 square inches. For the 16.9-28 XMCL industrial bar - 254 square inches. I suppose that can vary by brand, but it demonstrates that what looks good on the top of the tire doesn't necessarily equate to what's happening "where the rubber meets the road".
 
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hodge

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I think your logic is a little skewed. R4 industrial tires are the normal now, because for the most conditions, they serve the best. No one tire, just like on trucks and cars, will serve as the best for every condition- therefore, you look for what does the most, most of the time. Unless you are pulling heavy implements through muddy fields all day long, industrial R4's serve the compact tractor owner the best.
I seriously doubt that the amount of rubber used has anything to do with it. What little is saved in the bar height is certainly used up in the increased width...
Plus, the compounds used, type of surface operated on, maintenance, etc. has much more to do with wear than the height of the bars.
I would much prefer R4's for what I use my Kubota for, but I just don't have the money to put a set of them on my tractor. If I did, and could make an informed choice between R4's and conventional ags, I would go for R4's.
 

Kytim

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Hodge, I would like a set of the R-4's as well. But, for our tractors the b7100 finding a economically painless and matched sizes for the DT's (4x4) would prove difficult. At least it has for me. I got lucky when I needed a set of tires last time, fronts very worn, rears 50% my nephew ( Kybota here on OTT) gave me a set of slightly worn fronts for $0. sweet!! which means i've got another 3-5 years before I haveta replace all of them. maybe by then we will have viable choices, at least I can hope!
 

hodge

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Hodge, I would like a set of the R-4's as well. But, for our tractors the b7100 finding a economically painless and matched sizes for the DT's (4x4) would prove difficult. At least it has for me. I got lucky when I needed a set of tires last time, fronts very worn, rears 50% my nephew ( Kybota here on OTT) gave me a set of slightly worn fronts for $0. sweet!! which means i've got another 3-5 years before I haveta replace all of them. maybe by then we will have viable choices, at least I can hope!
The only current solution I found was to buy new rims and tires- an expensive option. For my uses, the turf tires have done fine. Especially in snow- I doubt that bar tread tires would have been an improvement- so, I am satisfied at this point. But, I would still love some R4's, and feel that for my land and uses, they wouldn't tear things up.
If we didn't have anything to look forward to, then life would get boring. One day, maybe my tractor will look more tractor-like....
 

firejunkie

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Kubota Mx4700 4w/FEL, Modern Ag cutter,Dirt dog Box blade and Rake, Custom forks
Mar 19, 2011
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Give Solideal a call, tell them what you have as well as wheel sizes etc. They have a very large selection of tires, this is an international company so I would imagine they would have them, I have not found a tire of any type then don't supply and I have been in many varied industrial jobs. they can give you part #s at that point you can find a dealer to order them ( most major rental companies deal with them, RSC, United Rentals, Sunbelt etc. and can sell them to you)

http://www.solidealusa.com
 

Kingcreek

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Grand L3010 GST 4wd, LA481FEL, various attachments and accessories
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I have R4s on a loader tractor that gets used on rock driveway and some concrete and hard packed dirt and clay with some rough mowing and blading, etc. still very servicable with 1050hrs on them but I'll have to think about replacing around 1200 or so. If I was using it more for field work, pulling a disc, plow, or cultivator I would want the ag tires. I saw an auction listing with new Kubota wheels with mounted ag tires coming up and I think I should probably be there for it. Gotta check again but I think they were L series.
wondering what price point would be a bargain?
The last couple auctions I've been to have been great for sellers, bad for buyers.
 

Bulldog

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Bars are mighty short, & no clearance for the tire to self clean in muddy conditions. I'm willing to bet side by side in medium soft or wet soil conditions that the ag bars will will walk away from the loader type tires (just the opinion of an old farm boy & tractor puller).
Kubota Newbie, I'll go with you on this one. Industrial tires are junk in the mud. Now before I get jumped I do agree that the R4's do have their place and serve a great purpose. If I was using a tractor on asphalt or concrete daily I think the R4 tires would be the best choice. When it comes to dirt/farm use I think the ag tires are a must. I'm thinking right now about several times I would have been stuck with R4's but made it thru with ag's. Not that I plan on mudding but sometimes it just sneaks up on you.

As far as the tire wear goes the tire brand is a huge factor. Right now I have Firestone, Bridgestone and Titan. The 2 stones are far from being rock solid. Not that they are bad tires but by far not what the Titans are. Not only are the Titans wearing much better they also do better in the mud. I have the long bar / short bar Titans and as of right now they are the best tractor tire I have ever been around.

This is about as bad as starting a oil thread. Everyone has their own opinion about what works the best and nothing will change our mind. I'm glad that we have different options so each of us can choose what tire works best for our needs. No one tire style will work for everyone.
 

Kubota Newbie

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Bulldog,
I've got the Goodyear DynaTorque II's on my old M. They're a long bar short bar tire too. If money were no object, radials would be the way to go, but for the amount I use the tractor the bias ply's will have to do. When we were pulling the little tractors there was absolutely nothing that would touch the Firestone 23 degree bar, most newer pulling tires are based on that bar design, some even a little straighter. But the straighter the bar the less readily the tire will self-clean, which is a problem in soft soil or mud.
I understand the attraction to the R4's where folks want a "hybrid type" tire and aren't doing any heavy draft "farm type" work like pulling a plow, disk, or moving round bales in the mud/snow. I guess my observation was that the bars on the latest offerings are awfully short, new R4's of the same size were barely more than half the bar height on my Goodyear ag tires. The exception was probably the Goodyear R4's on some of the newer tractors, they had a deeper bar on them than most any of the others.
I do think people are being fooled a little by the "squarish" profile of the R4's by thinking they have more rubber on the ground or better flotation. Michelin's numbers for the 16.9-28's (just because that's what size is on my tractor) demonstrate that the ag tire has a contact print that's +8 square inches over the R4 of the same size at the recommended load/pressure. That probably varies by brand some though.
But then again, my tractor is for plowing, disking, mowing hay and moving round bales. I don't have to worry about tearing up the yard and don't have a paved drive to plow. If those were my priorities I might look at something a little less agressive than an ag bar too (but I'd still want as deep a lug as I could get).
 

Bulldog

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M 9000 DTC, L 3000 DT
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Bulldog,
If money were no object, radials would be the way to go, but for the amount I use the tractor the bias ply's will have to do.

I agree about the radials. It amazed me how great they do in the mud. I have a friend with a 110 hp NH that has radials on it. A couple of winters ago I watched him go thru a whole with a roll of hay on the front and the belly of the tractor was dragging the ground. It didn't even slow him up. I have been in the field and on the road with it and the ride quality is much better than bias tires. The bad side of them is the price to say the least. He had a front tire seperate the belts and had to replace it. $900 for one tire, ouch. The man at the tire store said that was cheap compaired to the rears for it, $2200 ea.


But the straighter the bar the less readily the tire will self-clean, which is a problem in soft soil or mud.
I formerly was a heavy equ operator. My old loader (Cat 980 G) had tires with lugs almost 6" deep. Going on rock they were fine. Put it in barely , moist dirt you could do fairly well. In mud, they might as well been slicks. They were packed full and the mud wouldn't move.

Like I said before, I'm glad we have more than one choice of tire pattern so we can choose which one works best for us. Myself, mine are farm tractors and AG tires are the only choice for me. I don't play golf and don't have sod so tearing up a little grass in the yard doesn't bother me a bit. I'm still kicking the idea around of fencing most of my yard of and turning the cows out in it. Have the grass cut and fertilized for free by some 4 legged black lawn mowers. The more I talk about it the better it sounds. :D
 

firejunkie

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Kubota Mx4700 4w/FEL, Modern Ag cutter,Dirt dog Box blade and Rake, Custom forks
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greenwood, SC
^^^^^^
WHAT?

Back to original topic.
Newbie I will agree that some industrial tires are better than others, it highly depends on what brand and the particular model you choose that will factor how it performs, the same with any tire. Here where I am at we have heavy red clay, when it's wet it's like baby diaper mush, any any tires ag or ind, get loaded up and become slicks, it sticks to everything, then when it's dry it is like concrete, for the most part heavy plowing, rowing, seeding I can see your point and agree that a deeper lug design of Ags might be better.I have used my Father in laws John Deere with Ags a few times around here, and if it just rained, hang it up, I have gotten it stuck a few times with just an inch of mud, and that was just moving hay bales.
 

hodge

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The original topic was about compact tractors, not large farm equipment. I think that the reason that most compact tractors come with industrial tires is because the industrials serve a compact tractor best, for what they are used for. There is no question that deep ags serve best in mud and heavy field work, but industrials bridge the gap between turf and ags, where the owner wants better traction, but doesn't want to tear the lawn up any more than necessary.

Moderator- can posts like annoo's be filtered out? Obviously it isn't for the benefit of the forum.
 

cmorningstar01

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but industrials bridge the gap between turf and ags, where the owner wants better traction, but doesn't want to tear the lawn up any more than necessary.
I think the R4's also provide a somewhat smoother/softer ride for the driver who will be operating the tractor sometimes for hours on a compacted surface like gravel,turf or asphalt where Ag's might tend to be very uncomfortable after a while. I have R4's on one of my machines and Goodyear Terra Turfs on another and the turfs are a much more comfortable ride so I could only imagine what the Ags would be like


Moderator- can posts like annoo's be filtered out? Obviously it isn't for the benefit of the forum.
I hit the report post button as soon as I saw it,I have to wonder if the idiot that made those post actually thinks that anyone from a tractor forum would be interested in shoes
 
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rednecklimo85

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78 B6100E(brush hog, boxblade, snowplow) 85 B7200DT(loader and backhoe)
Oct 24, 2009
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torrington,ct
My B7200 has the original turf tires on it, they are filled with tubes, slime, and fix a flat, and washer fluid for weight, the sides are torn up and barely hold air. but the tread on them is still decent, and they didn't have but a half an inch of tread to begin with. I cant say I've really had it in a situation requiring more traction, in mud they float great and still dig, and are awesome in snow.

My B6100 with roughly the same hours has non original ag's and they are worn to nothing. So, a tire with a half an inch of tread has never been replaced, but a tire with 3 inch's of tread is ready for it's third set. I don't think tread depth alone determs tire life at all.

By the way, if I had to choose, unless I was doing alot of ground engaging work I'de probably go with a good turf tire, they have more then proven them selves to me in terms of traction and life.
 

Brewer

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I'm in the industrial & agricultural tyre trade, and I would say that a tyre is probably 90% compound and construction, 10% pattern.

R4's are not a scam - their compound & construction is much tougher and they are designed, essentially, for abrasive yard work and hard ground. They have more rubber in contact with hard surfaces than R1's giving you better traction and longer wear. You see them on bobcats, graders, telehandlers, backhoes etc for a reason.

Ag tyres (R1's) are designed to provide better traction only in soft terrain. Their compound is soft and they have very little rubber in contact with hard ground. They wear extremely quickly on hard surfaces and suffer from 'heel and toe', where the bars wear unevenly leading to a very bumpy ride, increased vibration and even shorter life.

You need to choose based on your own application. If your work requires maximum traction on soft surfaces (and you don't mind carving up that surface) then go for R1's. If you use your machine for multiple purposes on a mix of terrains including hard ground (and don't want to mangle your lawn) then R4's are definitely a better option. Turf tyres (R3) are the gentlest on your lawn and have great traction on hard, flat, dry surfaces, but they will bog quickly in mud and are usually of lighter construction, making them more prone to stake damage.

Hope this helps.
 
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gpreuss

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You should take a look at load rating on these tires.
The AG 7x16 front tire on the L3200DT rates about 1100 lbs/tire. I reckon the tractor and empty loader/bucket come very close to this. Add a 1000 lb rock way out front, and you are well over the rating!
The AG 11.2x24 on the rear rates about 2100 lbs/tire.
The R4 tires by contrast are rated over 2000 lbs/tire on the front, and over 6000 lbs/tire on the rear. They get my vote every time, if you are considering loader work.
 

TripleR

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These types of threads are kinda good for a laugh or an argument or both; seems everyone has a strong opinion whether they own one tractor or several; put less than a 100 hours a years or hundreds to thousands. Often we get into an apples/oranges comparison "real farming" v utility work; full size v compact.

We use Industrial tires on some of our tractors, Ags on some and even turf on another and are pleased with the performance of all of them.

The "real farmers" who farm our land use Ags on their John Deere 7000 and 8000 Series field tractors and Industrial tires on their John Deere 4610 etc.; pretty sure they know what they are doing since one is in his 80's and been farming all of his life.

There is a use/demand for all types, that's why they make them.