American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers



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Engineering Tractors for Higher Speeds

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org

Citation:  Engineering Tractors for Higher Speeds. ASAE Distinguished Lecture No. 25, pp. 1-16. Agricultural Equipment Technology Conference, 12-14 February 2001, Louisville, Kentucky  913C0008.(doi:)
Authors:   Ray Clay and Paul Hemingway

This paper examines the market demand for tractors capable of higher than normal working speeds and discusses the evolution of such tractors in the market place over the past 20 years. The key engineering issues which have to be addressed in the construction of tractors of up to 80 kph (50 mph) speed capability are discussed in detail. Particular attention is paid to the areas of vehicle ride and handling, wheel and tire technology, steering, suspension and braking systems.

To illustrate that all necessary engineering requirements can be met in a vehicle that also develops comparable off road traction to that of a similar horsepower conventional tractor, the JCB Fastrac is discussed as a case study. Particular reference is made to the way in which the key vehicle systems above have been engineered into the vehicle.