Rubber Track Kit For Pickups

One of the showstoppers at the recent Farm Progress Show was a Ford Ranger pickup equipped with big floater tires and 15-in. wide rubber tracks on the rear wheels. A tandem axle sprayer -- also equipped with rubber tracks -- carried a 200-gal. tank and a 60-ft. boom, pulled by a gooseneck hitch.

The tracks are part of a kit by Rawson Enterprises. Farwell, Mich., and is also sold by JM Innovations, Inc., Edwardsville, Ill.,

"They combine the floatability of an ATV with the comfort of a pickup while taking advantage of the pickup's traction and weight carrying capabilities," says Jeff Mick, J M Innovations."The tracks work great with either pull-type or truck-mounted sprayers and can be quickly removed to convert the pickup back to normal use."

The kit includes the tracks, four 31 by 11.50 flotation tires, an idler wheel axle, "lift kit" suspension, and an idler arm that bolts onto the pickup frame. You remove the pickup's existing springs and shocks and replace them with bigger springs that provide more ground clearance.

The idler arm works as a torsion arm to keep the idler wheel axle in place," says Steve Rawson. "The arm bolts to the frame and stays with the pickup whenever you remove the tracks. There's no need to let air out of the tires. The continuous loop tracks have no seams to pull apart. Guide lugs keep the track running straight.

"The entire spray package was developed specifically for no-till and zone-till farming. It lets you get into even the wettest fields without compacting the soil, which makes it ideal for early pre-plant chemical applications. We tested it on our farm last spring and covered 300 acres per day with a 50-ft. boom with much less soil compaction."

The kit is offered on Ford Ranger and Chevrolet 5-10 mid-size pickups.

The J M tandem axle sprayer can be equipped either with a 32 1/2 or 47 1/2-ft., 50-ft., or 60-ft. self-leveling boom, 150 to 200-gal. tank, a 5 1/2 hp Honda gas engine, axles that adjust from 80 to 120-in. centers, 10 or 20-gal. foam markers, and a Micro-Trak MT-3000 spray controller.