1988 - Volume #12, Issue #4, Page #16[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Reversed tractor gives driver great visibilityA"reversed" 85 hp SAME tractor provides great visibility and precise handling for the Bolthouse Brothers, commercial vegetable growers near Marne, Mich.
Their "reversed" tractor was custom revamped by John Breen and Terry Weaver, both of Grand Rapids, Mich. Breen and Weaver reversed and repositioned the tractor's seat and steering wheel so that the driver sits above the pto, only 4 ft. off the ground, providing a great view of the cultivator and other implements directly in front.
The tractor's repositioned front axle and wheels are supported by an overhead frame made of 4 by 6 in. tubing. The new "nose job" gives it an 11 ft. wheelbase, with the front and rear wheels spaced for 30 in. rows.
A 3 pt. hitch behind the repositioned front wheels carries the cultivator and other implements. A cultivator, for example, can be mounted on the 3 pt. by sliding it in from the side on a couple boards. Or, a second tractor can be used to pick up the reversed tractor's front end, Breen points out.
He notes that the SAME tractor was selected for the $10,000 custom conversion because it offers a wide selection of gears ù 12 in reverse and 12 in forward gear. Operating speed ranges from 1 to 18 mph.
Breen and Weaver didn't have to change gears, but they did have to change the link-age. A shaft extends from the top of the transmission back to a shift lever, positioned next to the driver's seat.
"We're working on plans for a reversed tractor with more horsepower that could handle 12 row implements and be used for ridge till. The operator will be able to keep his eyes on the row without having to turn around to view planting or cultivating equipment," says Breen.
For more information, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, John Breen, 1417 Frontenac S.E., Grand Rapids, Mich. 49508 (ph 616 243-9757).
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