When you ask users why they have tracks, the number one response is I want to avoid compaction and have a better traction (especially this year!). But is it true? For example, for the compaction it is true that the total footprint of a track is larger but the weight is not equally distributed as there is more weight under the boggy wheels. Then what about the traction and fuel economy?
This text is based on an interview given by Bradely Harris from the Firestone Ag division. Modern Tire Dealer October 2018 « Tracks vs. Tires ».
• If the inflation pressure of the tire is less than 20psi: the tire transmits less pressure to the soil compared to a track.
• From 20 to 35psi: the track and tire are comparable.
• If the inflation pressure of the tire is above 35psi: the track has a lower pressure on the ground.
On wet soils the track will have approximately 3 times the traction of a tire and will enable an early start in the season.
Regarding the fuel economy the tests revealed that it is similar except if the tires are overinflated. In this last case a tracked tractor would use less fuel.
The last item a customer should consider it the cost of ownership. Typically a tracked tractor will cost more to purchase.
Have a good season!
Daniel Marleau – CEO LanOTR