Spacers - Front and Rear, or Rear Only?

Henro

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You still don't get it but that is OK.

EVEN inside the tippping axis of the axle wider IS STILL MORE STABLE (not less or equal, but more) and certainly at the stops. In the "it must tip all the way over scenario", I hope some day the lightbulb goes off and you realize the wider you get the harder it is to get to the stops, ie the harder it is to tip over, ie it is more stable.
(y) And may some day may your light bulb go out, and realize the front axle has no real effect on stability until an axle stop is reached! LOL

It has been nice talking...live long and prosper!

PS... I am going to give serious consideration to your perspective that wider makes it harder to get to the stops...but then, that supports what I have been saying...maybe...
 

BigG

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The narrow front end tractors with either a single or double wheel in the front were basically three points on a plane. Three points are enough to define a plane but they are truly dangerous at times, i.e. easy to tip. As you spread the front wheels apart the tractor will have a 4 point stance. The simple fact that there are 4 points of contact will make the tractor more stable.

Now add in the pivot point on the axle and the problem reverts back to a three point stance. The front pivot and the 2 rear wheels. This allows the front wheels to remain in contact with the ground over a much larger arc of travel. But you are still on three points of contact. The wider axle acts as a shock absorber to make the affects of a pothole or bump less to the tractor.

Looking at the small tractors the axle is somewhere in the area of 40 inches wide. Adding 3 inch spacers to each side making 46 inches total. This will affect the steering geometry and may cause issues. The very small amount of additional leverage added by the spacers will have a very limited amount of addition stability.

Therefor the impact of front spacers is greatly limited and not worth the cost.

For those of you old enough to remember when 3 wheelers were outlawed in favor of 4 wheelers it was due to the stability the 4th wheel added to the machine. However the 4 wheeler will still roll. I can assure you of that.
 

armylifer

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I had wheel spacers on my front axle for a short period of time. I took them off because I noticed that the axle hit the stops earlier than they did before I put the spacers on. I noticed that my axle stops were taking a beating and getting wear marks and actually starting to create a divot on the top of the axle where the stops hit the axle. I also noticed that my center pivot bolt started leaking fluid in my garage. I was able to fix that leak by tightening the pivot bolt but there was a sure failure of the bearing and seal coming soon if I did not remove the spacers from the front axle. It has been a year or so since I removed the spacers and I have not experienced any problems since then. My advice is; don't add spacers to the front axle. You are asking for trouble if you put spacers on the front wheels.
 

Henro

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I had wheel spacers on my front axle for a short period of time. I took them off because I noticed that the axle hit the stops earlier than they did before I put the spacers on. I noticed that my axle stops were taking a beating and getting wear marks and actually starting to create a divot on the top of the axle where the stops hit the axle. I also noticed that my center pivot bolt started leaking fluid in my garage. I was able to fix that leak by tightening the pivot bolt but there was a sure failure of the bearing and seal coming soon if I did not remove the spacers from the front axle. It has been a year or so since I removed the spacers and I have not experienced any problems since then. My advice is; don't add spacers to the front axle. You are asking for trouble if you put spacers on the front wheels.
That is very interesting! So with spacers your front axle was hitting the stops more frequently than without spacers.

At first look it appeared to me that this would support NHSleddog's position that wider on the front is better.

But thinking about it, imagine a tractor on a cross slope, (sloping to the right as moving forward) with the right side front wheel going over something that raises it, and it hits the stop. The upward force would tend to counter any force trying to make the tractor tip over to the right.

Now if there is a dip on the right side, the LEFT stop may be reached. The resulting force would tend to lift the left side of the tractor, which would add to forces that may be trying to tip the tractor to the right side...

So your experience may actually indicate that front spacer could be disadvantages as far as decreasing the chances of a tip over.

As much as I tried to leave this thread alone at this point, I could not help but comment on Armylifer's experience...:oops:
 

armylifer

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That is very interesting! So with spacers your front axle was hitting the stops more frequently than without spacers.

At first look it appeared to me that this would support NHSleddog's position that wider on the front is better.

But thinking about it, imagine a tractor on a cross slope, (sloping to the right as moving forward) with the right side front wheel going over something that raises it, and it hits the stop. The upward force would tend to counter any force trying to make the tractor tip over to the right.

Now if there is a dip on the right side, the LEFT stop may be reached. The resulting force would tend to lift the left side of the tractor, which would add to forces that may be trying to tip the tractor to the right side...

So your experience may actually indicate that front spacer could be disadvantages as far as decreasing the chances of a tip over.

As much as I tried to leave this thread alone at this point, I could not help but comment on Armylifer's experience...:oops:
You are correct, in my experience what you describe is exactly what happens on uneven ground. I suspect that is because the front of the tractor is lighter than the rear.

I did not want to comment on the tippiness aspect because every situation is going to be different. I will leave that argument to others. I can only relate my experience.
 

NHSleddog

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I take a couple days off and the thread heads straight to Bizzaroworld.

Henro, could you provide a SINGLE example where narrower is more stable? Just one is fine. It is obvious you will not let your false assumption go no matter what.

BigG - Seriously? You content that you only have 3 contact points because of the axle pivot? If you go take one of the FOUR tires off your tractor what happens? Asking for a friend. This would be funny with the DOT, "hey, you can't weigh that 4th tire, the axle pivots, that magically removes all the weight from the other tire".

ArmyLifter - Are you talking about the steering stops?

Increasing the width of the front will reduce the angle of the tractor in relationship to the pivot stops. It will have the opposite effect of what you describe. The picture I posted should show that preety clearly, but I could add a tractor and stops to the picture for visuals. For sure more force will be applied to the stops when it gets there due to the increased torque so I can understand damaging them. The geometry however would still put the stops further away.

Sorry guys but this isn't a "how I feel" issue. it is math. Math doesn't lie rather you get it or not.

This is like arguing with a kid about something he doesn't quite get.

I say heat rises.
The kid says but it is colder at the top of the mountain.
Yes son, because the air is thinner - but heat still rises.
To which he replies not according to the mountain, it is colder
Rinse and repeat.

Wider is more stable..... now back to Bizzaroworld.
 

armylifer

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I take a couple days off and the thread heads straight to Bizzaroworld.

Henro, could you provide a SINGLE example where narrower is more stable? Just one is fine. It is obvious you will not let your false assumption go no matter what.

BigG - Seriously? You content that you only have 3 contact points because of the axle pivot? If you go take one of the FOUR tires off your tractor what happens? Asking for a friend. This would be funny with the DOT, "hey, you can't weigh that 4th tire, the axle pivots, that magically removes all the weight from the other tire".

ArmyLifter - Are you talking about the steering stops?

Increasing the width of the front will reduce the angle of the tractor in relationship to the pivot stops. It will have the opposite effect of what you describe. The picture I posted should show that preety clearly, but I could add a tractor and stops to the picture for visuals. For sure more force will be applied to the stops when it gets there due to the increased torque so I can understand damaging them. The geometry however would still put the stops further away.

Sorry guys but this isn't a "how I feel" issue. it is math. Math doesn't lie rather you get it or not.

This is like arguing with a kid about something he doesn't quite get.

I say heat rises.
The kid says but it is colder at the top of the mountain.
Yes son, because the air is thinner - but heat still rises.
To which he replies not according to the mountain, it is colder
Rinse and repeat.

Wider is more stable..... now back to Bizzaroworld.
I was not speaking about the turn stops, I was speaking of the point where the top of axle hits the tractor frame when the axle pivots. There is a little pad cast into the axle at that point. That point is what I was talking about.

I am not arguing about your math but there are some factors in your equation that are missing. The fact that the tractor does not have a suspension is a very important part to that equation.

If the tractor had a spring suspension I would agree with you. If that were the case, then wider is more stable. BUT, a tractor does not have a spring suspension and that is the reason that wider is not always more stable.

Another factor that you are not accounting for is the weight distribution between the front and rear. If the weight distribution were equal, then the argument for additional stability with a wider front stance would have merit.

Put together the facts that the tractor is not sprung and the weight distribution between the front and rear is weighted more toward the rear, then your math is not working.

There is one scenario that your math would absolutely work though. That is on perfectly level ground with no uneven surfaces.
 

NHSleddog

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I'm not sure where springs entered the conversation. They have never been a factor in what I am talking about.

All things being equal, the fraction of front/rear weight will not effect the statement that wider is more stable on the front as well as the rear. And given the SAME assembly and SAME ratio of weight (+/- regardless) - wider is still more stable, front or rear. As the angle increases the benefit only gets bigger.

This isn't my math, this is everyone's math. I strongly encourage everyone to use it.

Based on the number of PM's I have received from well respected members and fabricators here, it is good to know that a good many do understand it.
 
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Henro

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I take a couple days off and the thread heads straight to Bizzaroworld.

Henro, could you provide a SINGLE example where narrower is more stable? Just one is fine. It is obvious you will not let your false assumption go no matter what.

Wider is more stable..... now back to Bizzaroworld.
I gave you a specific example as to why width of the front tires makes no difference on a center pivot axle until an axle stop is reached. Which is that the front axle has no effect on side to side stability, until an axle stop is reached.

How about if you explain why you think wheel width on a front axle has any effect on what is going on, when the axle is free to pivot at the center? It is more than math...it is understanding the dynamics of how things work.

Just to repeat what was stated previously, the front axle does lift when a tire on either side goes over something...

Frankly Bizzaroworld seems to be the right place for you to return back to...LOL
 

BigG

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Read this: https://extension.psu.edu/tractor-stability-and-instability



From the above article:
" Front stability baselines exist but have limited use in stability/instability considerations, and are not normally included in such discussions. "

As I stated earlier the front axle adds very little to the stability of the tractor.

The last time I heard Penn State has a pretty good rep. If they do not figure the front end as a big influence in stability then the benefits of the front spaces is limited, In fact the other studies that I looked at do not mention anything about front axle's value at preventing roll overs. They spend much of the effort in making the rear axle more stable. Wide tires, dual tires or the adjustment of the tires to the widest setting are the most often preventatives mentioned.
 
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NHSleddog

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I gave you a specific example as to why width of the front tires makes no difference on a center pivot axle until an axle stop is reached. Which is that the front axle has no effect on side to side stability, until an axle stop is reached.

How about if you explain why you think wheel width on a front axle has any effect on what is going on, when the axle is free to pivot at the center? It is more than math...it is understanding the dynamics of how things work.

Just to repeat what was stated previously, the front axle does lift when a tire on either side goes over something...

Frankly Bizzaroworld seems to be the right place for you to return back to...LOL
You go on believing narrower is more stable, I will go on believing wider is more stable. For sure one of us is right and I have math on my side.
 

armylifer

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Look, I am not trying to belabor the point but that article is saying exactly what we have been telling you. From the article: "Front stability baselines exist but have limited use in stability/instability considerations, and are not normally included in such discussions."

Read the article again and you will see that in several places it mentions other exigent factors that relate to tractor stability.

Edit to add: I do not think anyone said that narrower is better than wider. I think that everyone involved said that going wider than stock is often not beneficial.

I am out now!
 
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Henro

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Read this: https://extension.psu.edu/tractor-stability-and-instability



From the above article:
" Front stability baselines exist but have limited use in stability/instability considerations, and are not normally included in such discussions. "

As I stated earlier the front axle adds very little to the stability of the tractor.

The last time I heard Penn State has a pretty good rep. If they do not figure the front end as a big influence in stability then the benefits of the front spaces is limited, In fact the other studies that I looked at do not mention anything about front axle's value at preventing roll overs. They spend much of the effort in making the rear axle more stable. Wide tires, dual tires or the adjustment of the tires to the widest setting are the most often preventatives mentioned.
That is a good article but it fails to address the hair we have been splitting here.

That is that ( in my analysis anyway) that a wide front axle tractor, witha center pivot, behaves the same as a narrow front end tractor, UNTILL AN AXLE STOP IS REACHED.
 

Henro

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That is a good read, but it will fall on deaf ears. In a nutshell, increasing width effectively lowers the COG, which makes it more stable.
That is true due to extra weight added, but it it does nothing else until a front axle stop is reached.

Edit: I am going to follow Armylifer out the door now...honest!
 

Freeheeler

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I say heat rises.
The kid says but it is colder at the top of the mountain.
Yes son, because the air is thinner - but heat still rises.
To which he replies not according to the mountain, it is colder
Rinse and repeat.
In and undergrad physics class I once had a test question that read
" so if heat rises, why is the top of the mountain covered in snow while the valley has no snow? "
3 pages, got an A. Would not get an A today, but still understand ;)
 
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Freeheeler

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Just for fun, I'd like to point out that the front axle is on a pivot. To assume this plays no role until the pivot stops are hit implies a frictionless pivot. Those don't exist ;)
 
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802Driver

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In and undergrad physics class I once had a test question that read
" so if heat rises, why is the top of the mountain covered in snow while the valley has no snow? "
3 pages, got an A. Would not get an A today, but still understand ;)
I had to bite....solar energy is absorbed at ground level, in essence, the earth is actually heated "from the ground up". As air is heated, it rises, expands and cools, on an average of 3.5 degrees F for every 1000ft, taking into consideration it is not saturated which would involve a different lapse rate. By the time you factor in the height of a particular snow capped mountain, at that elevation you are into the negative temperature range. :)
 
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Henro

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Just for fun, I'd like to point out that the front axle is on a pivot. To assume this plays no role until the pivot stops are hit implies a frictionless pivot. Those don't exist ;)
Ok, but try living the practical world for a bit...LOL. Wind on a tractor also has a negative effect if it is blowing from the high side to the low side...who can argue with this fact?

It is all a matter of what the net effect is...both front axle pivot friction and wind are likely minimal to the point of being non issues...

Edit: I do agree discussions can be fun...
 
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