Gravel & CTL's?

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by thepawnshop, Apr 8, 2006.

  1. thepawnshop

    thepawnshop LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 387

    OK, as most of you guys know, I am considering a rubber tire skid to add to my mini and CTL and one of the reasons for that addition is the concern I have that running in 57's (gravel) can tear up the undercarriage/tracks of my JD 322 CTL. Should that be a realistic concern?
  2. westernpa

    westernpa LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    Reading my TL130 operator's guide it says running in pure sand or gravel with a CTL is not recommended because it will work over the undercarriage. Rocks and sand increases the wear and tear getting in between the rollers, idlers, drive and tracks. It will put a hurtin' on the undercarriage for sure. If you will be operating in gravel piles and sand most of the time then IMO you would be better off with a machine with tires.
  3. iowacatman

    iowacatman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 93

    There are some operating tips and maintenance items you should be aware of before running in gravel. Check with your rep.

    I agree with weternpa, better off just avoiding gravel and rock with your CTL.
  4. YellowDogSVC

    YellowDogSVC LawnSite Gold Member
    from TX
    Messages: 3,792

    can ctl's hold up in land clearing applications where I may encounter surface rocks and some sharper stumps?
  5. dozerman21

    dozerman21 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,171

    Like the other guys said, it will shorten the life of the tracks, but IMO, it's not enough to buy a wheeled skid just for that. Unless you're constantly working in stone, I couldn't justify it. I don't think #57's would be that bad. When you're working around a larger stone like #4's and 2's, that's where you can do the most damage because the rock won't be able to go through the sprocket, and especially between the rollers and track, as easy. I have to use my CT332 in all conditions, and I put in a lot of stone drives, and dig out existing stone drives. The main thing you need to avoid is spinning on large stone. Try to do quarter turns, and if you're working in mud be careful, because that's how you can detrack a machine. Mud covered rocks can get between the roller and track, and if you're in a turn, it can lift the track and make it crooked and start to come off. I just don't think #57's would do much damage. It would definetly be a whole lot cheaper to figure in a little shorter track life span, than to buy another machine, unless you need a wheeled skid for pavement and other uses.

    Yellow- There are many land clearers around here that have switched to CTL's. I would still prefer OTT steel tracks because things like sharp stumps will cut the he!! out of the rubber tracks. That has to be one of the worst things you could run over. If you really want to go the CTL route in those conditions, just expect on a much shorter track life...maybe half. If you can tack that on to your price, maybe a CTL would work for you. The surface rocks aren't a problem, it's the sharp things that will cut a track, and once you have a cut, it will continue to get bigger, like a boxer's eye!:hammerhead: The OEM won't cover anything like that. Most don't even cover service time if a machine detracks.
  6. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    Regular bulldozers with steel tracks have the same problems when running in gravel. Say a D-8 pushing up piles of processed gravel all day wear out tracks faster from wear than a D-8 pushing dirt. The processed gravel is finer and has sharper edges and its like sand paper and wears out the undercarriage faster.
  7. dozerman21

    dozerman21 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,171

    You're right. Sand is the worst thing for a dozer. It will really shorten the U/C life span if you run in it on a regular basis. But on a dozer, you have steel on steel, and the sand gets between the sprocket, bushings, idlers, and rollers, and acts like sandpaper. It will wear the grouser pads faster too. On a CTL, it's not steel on steel, it's steel rollers, idlers, and sprockets working against rubber tracks and rails.

    Sand and gravel probably isn't the best material for a CTL to run in, since the tracks are steel imbedded and the sprocket is steel, but it doesn't have the same effect as a dozer in those conditions.
  8. AWJ Services

    AWJ Services LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Ga
    Messages: 4,281

    Actually Takeuchi has steel on steel with there track system.
    The rubber does not touch the undercarriage.
  9. tallrick

    tallrick LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 682

    Not sure about other models, but with the ASV there's no steel on steel, and the tracks generally stay on the gravel, you don't see much of it getting inside. I have seen a lot of them after working in sand, and it really doesn't have the same effect as a segmented steel track system like a dozer. With metal on metal, sand and gravel can be ground into an abrasive, add water and you have a slurry eating up your steel parts. Rubber tracks often get more wear working on pavement, where the outside of the track gets ground away, and the inside is repeatedly strained from having to slip on pavement in turns. From what I have seen, machines used for road or concrete work had more undercarriage problems that those used to spread gravel or that worked on sandy sites. Since every CTL is different, and every part of the country has different types of rocks this may not apply to you.
  10. dozerman21

    dozerman21 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,171

    Right, but he has a Deere, which doesn't have steel rails. The majority of CTL's aren't steel on steel.:)

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