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need Temp Solution to traction issues

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by YellowDogSVC, Jan 3, 2010.

  1. YellowDogSVC

    YellowDogSVC LawnSite Gold Member
    from TX
    Messages: 3,793

    As some of you know, I have a Bobcat s330. to save on weight and width, I bought the machine and swapped out the 14-17.5 for the 12-16.5 hulk tires.
    Question to some of you who may run bigger tires on a skid. Is the swap back worth it for more flotation and traction?

    I'm looking for a temporary solution to get me through the damp season. Nothing is really drying out and some of the log loads I carry are above 3k lbs. Not only am I leaving ruts, I am simply not getting much traction. Of course, part of the issue is the hulk tires but would a wider footprint make much of a difference?

    I'm holding off on OTT tracks because I haven't gotten enough answers on weather or not they will allow me to work without tearing up properties when I move the dead oaks. I remember the old days running my OTT loegering trailblazers and they were rough on the ground. I've been looking at rubber pad OTT tracks but I still think they will be rough.

    Thanks for the input! --- Yellow Dog
  2. AEL

    AEL LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,724

    Yellowdog- I find the bigger tires do help on our 330, but its not by any means a night and day difference. Have you looked into an A300 bobcat. You could always swap to turf tires when working in sensitive areas, and if you really wanted just get the extra counterweight for it...
  3. YellowDogSVC

    YellowDogSVC LawnSite Gold Member
    from TX
    Messages: 3,793

    I may have 5 different jobs in the course of a week. All different so it's tough to swap out tires. That why I don't want OTT metal tracks again. Too much time swapping stuff out.
    I used to want to run bulky hulks because hulks last me 1500 to 2000 hours but didn't want the width. I have a brand new set of s330 14 ply tires and rims just sitting here and thought I would give it a go but if it's not that big a difference, I may not go through the trouble ( I also have to swap the bobtach back out because they are angled different).

    It will dry out again and won't be an issue for a lot of jobs but this winter and spring are supposed to be wet or damp. So many seeps and springs are running that traction/flotation will certainly be an issue especially when I'm cleaning up the oak wilt and carrying the very heavy trunks and logs over the same areas all day.

    Oh, I already stripped all the counterweights I could off my s330 (axle and back door weights) to help keep me from bogging the machine down. When I had my machine weighed, with cab, AC and 74 CI bucket I weighed 8,900 lbs. That tells me the book weight is off because the stock rims and tires are much heavier than the hulks plus I took off somewhere around 360lbs of counterweights (6 axle weights and 2 door weights).
  4. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,162

    I bought a set of the 33X15's for my 440 a couple years ago. I used them in heavy mud. It was the most difficult conditions I had run in. I would say that the difference was substantial. Buying those tires saved that job for me. Those floatation tires can be a good alternative I think to tracks. Makes the machine wider and the tires are more expensive, but they certainly make a big difference.
  5. Fieldman12

    Fieldman12 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,504

    I have not swapped tires on a skid but many times on farm equipment which would be at times running in similar conditions as you. Anytime you can go with a wider footprint you have less compaction and your foot print is not as deep in the ground. Only positive thing also that I am sure you have thought of but will not help you allot is if you could make some type of temporary road. Even at that though you will be driving off the road to where ever the log may be. The temporary road may not even be an option for you. I know in real wet areas it is common to incorporate lime into the soil which really helps dry it out. Maybe that could be used on a temporary road to help dry things a bit. I know I may be getting out there a little with my answer but just thought I would throw that out there.
  6. YellowDogSVC

    YellowDogSVC LawnSite Gold Member
    from TX
    Messages: 3,793

    That would be a good idea except that I am usually working around a home that has established yard (notice I don't say lawn because it's usually weeds holding hands) and the owners are concerned about ruts and "yard" damage. Oak Wilt cleanup is inherently messy because these trees are often very large and fall to pieces when dropped. This pic is an example of a small piece of trunk...

    murf 2.JPG
  7. Construct'O

    Construct'O LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Sw Iowa
    Messages: 1,387

    If me in your situration i still believe OTT solid rubber tracks would work and the cheaper way for now.Look for a used pair on ironplanet or ebay.

    A guy not to far from me had a pair on his Case 430 and he was working in some muddy places that you wouldn't believe.Down fall of them as said on here before is tires inside might spin and scuff your tire.

    In the worst mud you will be leaving tracks no matter what you have,look at dirt diggers post of the rut he was making with their CTL.

    If i chnaged out to the bigger tires and still need more traction chain it up,i know pain ,but if it gets the job do do what you have too or set and wait for dryer days,whenever that will be.

    No fix is going to work 100% of the time,no matter what you do.Mud here is solid ground this morning -22 below here:cry:Good luck:usflag:
  8. RockSet N' Grade

    RockSet N' Grade LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,454

    YellowDog........I know it is too little too late, but a year or so ago KSSS bought a complete pair of VTS for his machine for $5k.......I remember because he got his set for less than I got mine at $8k. I have not seen any on ironplanet as of late.......if I do, I will ping you.....

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Messages: 5,132

    i gave up on trying to not rut up the place
    i use plywood or should i say chip board about 6 bucks a sheet
    its not the anwser for everyone but works for what i do
  10. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,162

    I do the same thing even with VTS or my excavator which the specs say is 5 psi. I would like to get some of those poly mats that are advertised in the dirt mags.

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