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Order Ford 4000 Parts Online

3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000

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Author  [Modern View]

10-08-2019 09:31:06

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I want to add to my stable of hundred series Fords and thinking about a 3 cyl 4000. I have a life time of experience with hundreds and next to none with later models. In my area, 3 cyl brings more than a 4 cyl in equal condition. My only complaint with my 801 and other hundereds is lack of power steering and live pto. My questions for those with experience with both are (A) Are 3cyl thousands equally durable overall as hundereds and 4 cyl? (B) Is power steering measurably better on a 3 cyl ? (C) 4000s side by side,equal condition,how much more (if any) would you pay for the 3 cyl?
Thanks for your opinion and you can thank me for not stirring up a fight by asking for color opinions . LOL

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10-09-2019 14:30:19

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
The 3 cylinder engine is way more rugged than the 4. The 3 diesel is very tuff the gas models if worked hard seams to have short ring life. We are talking heavy tillage hour after hour.

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10-09-2019 10:54:23

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
Thank you one and all for comments and advice. I feel better after assurance thousands are as well built as the hundreds I've always really liked. The only thing remaining is power steering. I had always thought PS was standard on 1966 and later but that doesn't appear to be true. If a 3 cyl 4000 didn't come with factory PS,is it possible, pratical and worth cost to add or is it wiser holding out for one already equipted with ps? Odds are I will put a loader on it. At 1700 additional pounds plus a loader,ps will likly be necessary.

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Keith Williams

10-09-2019 10:04:23

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
If you see one in good condition, don't think too long. It will be gone!
You did not ask about gas or diesel, but here are my thoughts.
The red tiger engine was designed as a gas and was made a diesel as an afterthought.
The world series fords were designed as diesels and made a gas as a retrofit.

I own a 1964 4000 gas AP and a 1978 4600 Diesel AP.
The differences are numerous and great.

The cooling system is much better on the 4600.
The 8 speed crash box is vastly superior to the 5 speed. I do not like the reverse speeds though, low is too slow and high is too fast, the 5 speed is better here.
The clutch pedal is much easier to push on the 4600. A day on the 4000 makes my knee hurt.
Independent PTO is easier to use than the 2 stage clutch. You can engage and disengage on the fly.
The front suspension is much stronger on the 4600.
Brakes are night and day better on the 4600.
Faster road speed, 5 speed is SLOW to go on the road. 4600 still had the power to climb steep road hills without shifting.
Hydraulic system is much improved. More flow and control.
Both are 12 volt now as I converted the 4000 long ago. The 4 & 3 cyl 4000 would have a Generator while the 4600 has an Alternator.
Fuel consumption is much less on the diesel 4600 vs the gas 4000. and I get a lot more done with the extra power of the 4600.
I have manual steering on the 4000 (ARMSTRONG steering LOL!), the 4600 is one finger steering.
I added front weights to the 4600. Easy on and off with suitcase weights. I had to use the inside the wheel weights on the 4000. They are a PITA! The front of the 4000 still will come up with a 6 foot hog on the back.
I believe the newer models are more durable than the 4 cyl models. Time will tell on that one. They sure are heavier built.
I could go on......
I paid 6500 for my 4600. I would guess my 4000 at around 3000-3500. The 4600 is well worth the extra to me.
I hope that all makes sense and is helpful.

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Destroked 450

10-09-2019 09:20:41

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
I grew up on a Ford 850 and own 2 versions of the later 4000's today.

I'm going to answer (C) first! Comparing the 800/801/early 4000 series tractors to the 65 and later 4000 series is like comparing apples to grapefruits, their nothing alike, the later 4000's are bigger, heavier (over 1700 lbs), and stronger built than the early 4000's.

A more equal comparison the the early 4000 would be the 65 and later 3000 model, same basic chassis but with the 3 cylinder engine.

Now back to (A) I consider the 3 and 4 cylinder gas engines to be equal in durability but the 3 cylinder models governor system is a bit finicky and the ones I've driven where not as responsive is the 4 cylinder models. I consider the 3 cylinder diesel to be superior to either of gas engines and early 4 cylinder diesel.

(B) 801 and early 4000's where available with power steering which is the same system as used on the 3000 models but wasn't used on the later 4000's.

Here's some comparisons.

63-64 4000 - 172 ci engine rated at 46 hp, swept back front axle, 13.6-28 rear tires, single reduction rear axle with drum brakes, live pto with 2 stage clutch, weighs around 3200 lbs

65-up 3000 - 158 ci gas or 175 ci diesel rated at 40 hp, swept back front axle, 13.6-28 rear tires, single reduction rear axle with drum brakes, live pto with 2 stage clutch weighs around 3700 lbs

65-mid 68 4000 - 192 ci gas or 201 ci diesel rated at 45 hp, straight boxed front axle, 16.9-30 rear tires, planetary axles with wet disc brakes, hydraulically controlled independent pto weighs around 4900 lbs

68-up 4000 - 201 ci gas or diesel rated at 52 hp, other specs are the same.

The 3000's extra 500 lbs is the additional gears in the trans and the much heavier built 3 cylinder engine placing most of the additional weight on the front axles, this makes for a better balanced tractor than prier models but increases low speed steering effort, for is reason I consider power steering a must for the 3000 and later models.

65-69 4000's used a manual steering box with a externally valved steering cylinder, this worked well but was slow and it is easy to out run the hydraulics even at operating speeds.

70-up 4000's had the much improved integral power steering.

All this said there is the 1 oddball, the 65-up 4000SU for special utility!
It has the same engine, trans, planetary axles with wet disc brakes and ind. pto of the 4000, but has the swept back front axle and 28" rear tires used on the 3000 models.

Here's a few pics of my tractors.
62 801 diesel with factory power steering

72 4000SU, same basic size as a 3000

69 4000 all purpose with later model flat top fenders

Disclamer: The tire sizes I listed are what is normally found on those models in my area although other sizes where available and could be more popular in other areas.

Example: 13.6-38 rear tires where more popular on the 65-up 4000's in some areas but I've only seen a few around my area.

Although I like the -000 series tractors I have, for a first time upgrade if money allows I would recommend looking at the newer 3600/4600 models.

Dry element air cleaner over oil bath

Relocated and more user friendly parking brake control

Engine driven tach over generator driven

4600 has same integral power steering as found only on late model 4000's

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10-09-2019 11:31:42

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to Destroked 450, 10-09-2019 09:20:41  

I tried for a several years to find a good 4000 SU (preferably) diesel with either S-O-S (I like them) or 4X2 transmission before giving up and buying a new MF 533 (the 2007, 201 CI Perkins modernized version of the 135). I wanted the LP SU version of the 4000 for mowing duties on steep ground but simply could not find a decent one.

Subsequently, I bought a second, new 60 PTO HP MF because I wanted to keep my local CNH dealer honest.

Ultimately, both MFs turned out to be mistakes and I sold both at losses, replacing both with Kubotas. Since then, I have bought three more Kubotas and there is no going back.


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10-09-2019 06:57:43

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
As to durable, I think the 3 cyl will last longer, and use less fuel. I think the overall controls are slightly better as to operator comfort and ease of use, especially in the 8 sp trans. I think the additional weight helps as well. I believe that in all day use, the 3 cyl will win over the 4 cyl, but not by much.

As to what I would buy... a 3cyl every time. They cost more, but sell for more.

If money were a problem, however I would not hesitate to use a 4 cyl, but the 3cyl diesels are like fleas as to availability, and the 4 cyl diesels are like unicorns....
Summary,,, a very slight lead and VERY strong preference to the 3 cyls.

But I would have the same argument on a 4600 vs a 3cy 4000 as well. And then the 4610 vs the 4600....

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Larry NCKS

10-09-2019 06:21:15

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
Quoting Removed, click Modern View to see

You will not find a 4 cylinder 4000 (other than a 4 speed model) without a live or independent PTO. The transmission PTO in the 5 speed was discontinued with the advent of the early *000 series.

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Sean in PA

10-09-2019 03:29:28

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
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Ultradog, not sure why you're arguing about the 3 cylinder 2000 & 3000 steering being basically the same as the prior 4 cylinders. I agree with you, but the OP was asking specifically about a 3 cylinder 4000, which as you noted has a completely different and superior power steering setup, and is what Lynn was responding to.

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Ultradog MN

10-09-2019 09:06:37

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to Sean in PA, 10-09-2019 03:29:28  
I replied to this:

"but my "big" tractor is a 3000 gasser."

"B. It has good power, the power steering is better than any 100 series I have had (if I'm not mistaken, even Ford called it Power Assist, not power steering)"

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10-08-2019 14:45:29

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
Pre-'65 4 cylinder: 3 main bearings. '65-up 3 cylinder: 4 main bearings. And a MUCH more robust crank. Given equal maintenance, I can't see a prior's engine lasting as long as a '65-up. Plus, on the 4000, you get the double reduction rear axle with wet disk brakes (vastly superior) and independent PTO. Some people don't care for the IPTO, but most like it once they're used to it, and it's very reliable. My 4600 is past 10,000 hours with -zero- work done on the PTO. A double clutch isn't going to last that long. Power steering was still an option, but from my limited experience with priors with power steering, a 3-cylinder's is better.
All else being equal, I'd go $1500 higher on a 3-cylinder... maybe more.

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10-08-2019 13:11:17

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
I would take a four cylinder 4000 gasoline S-O-S (or even a five speed) vis a vis a 3000 gasoline unit (possibly excepting a S-O-S model) any day, regardless of other options. Multiple reasons.

Diesel models: Subject of another thread.


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10-08-2019 17:55:13

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to Dean, 10-08-2019 13:11:17  
Mis-read the OPs original post. Thought OP was comparing a 4 cylinder 4000 to a three cylinder 3000, in which case see my previous comments.

The three cylinder 4000 is considerably heavier than the 4 cylinder 4000, has improved hydraulics, and double reduction axle. That said, PTO HP of the earlier units is about the same as that of the 4 cylinder 4000 (diesels excluded (see previous post))and the 4 cylinder is considerably more nimble.

I've owned and used both and prefer the 4 cylinder for my purposes.

PS is a red herring. Aside from this forum, I've never encountered a "distinction" between "power steering" and "power assist" steering. All power steering is power assist steering, though there are multiple ways of implementing such. Hydrostatic PS is a different animal, however, though unrelated to this discussion.


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Sean in PA

10-08-2019 12:31:08

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
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The '01 series had power steering and live PTO available. Any '01 with the middle digit of the model number is a 6 (661,761, 861, 961) has live PTO, and the power steering was an option on all of them after a certain date. The same is true for the 4 cylinder 4000 (and 2000) series.

With that being said, in addition to what the others have said, the 3 cylinder 4000 takes you beyond even live PTO to independent PTO. It is completely independent of the clutch.
As for the power steering on th e3 cylinder 4000, there were two different power steering designs on the 3 cylinder 4000 ag chassis tractors. The early ones, up to 3/70 had a cylinder down the left side of the tractor along the length of the single tie rod. After that they switched to a system with the cylinder inside the steering column. The early design had a control valve in one end of the cylinder that was controlled by an external linkage that detected the movement of the steering arm and so the power assist was a little delayed from the actual input from the steering wheel, and the sloppier the linkage or more worn or out of adjustment it became, the less like true power steering it became. The later design has the control valve and the cylinder itself inside the steering column and reaction time is as near to instantaneous as it can be. So I would recommend that you get one with the later design if you can find one.

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Ultradog MN

10-08-2019 12:09:07

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
A 3 cyl 4000 is an F-250 compared to a 4 cyl 4000 is a F-150.
Both are good pickups/tractors but a 250 is just more pickup.
Also, the 4 cyl tractors, though refined through the years, are still a 1954 design.
A 3 cyl 4000 was designed in about 1964.
That's a whole nother 10 years of design and engineering.

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Billy NY

10-08-2019 10:22:04

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
The 3 cylinder general purpose ford tractors are the next generation of what the hundred series is and they are vastly improved with the same "bullet proof" kind of reputation. I still have an 850 and a 640, had a 3600 too, and since '15 have had a 4630 FWD/. 4630 with the features mine has, is just miles ahead of the 850. Between the diesel 3600 and the 850, it too is just more tractor, differential lock, power steering, optional 2 stage clutch, 3 cylinder diesel being easy on fuel, no comparison. However both are very good, will do a lot of work and purely capable of most general purpose tasks, just the newer 3 cylinder models are better with more modern features. Maybe not a good analogy, but the hundred series is to the M1 Garand Rifle as the 3 cylinder models would be to the M14 or M1A rifle. Both very good tractors, just the newer ones are just more modern and I think the best bang for the buck. Power steering on my 4630 is just about 1 finger operational, it is a pleasure to drive, but so was our '64 4000 with S-O-S transmission, it too was easy to drive.

The 4630 I have is perfect for every task I need it for and it does not even have a loader, never did, was a good buy and low hours. Hard to go wrong with a 3 cylinder general purpose tractor that is in field ready condition.

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Lynn Patrick

10-08-2019 10:05:57

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to da.bees, 10-08-2019 09:31:06  
I can't answer all your questions or speak for everyone, but my "big" tractor is a 3000 gasser.
As to "A", I have found the 3 cyl's to be almost bullet-proof, but so were the 100's.
B. It has good power, the power steering is better than any 100 series I have had (if I'm not mistaken, even Ford called it Power Assist, not power steering), but I prefer the sound a 4 cyl makes when I'm working it!
C. Strictly a personal choice! 3 cyl usually bring more here, too.

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Ultradog MN

10-08-2019 15:22:46

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 Re: 3 cyl vs 4 cyl 4000 in reply to Lynn Patrick, 10-08-2019 10:05:57  
The power assist steering on a 4 cyl and 3 cyl with wishbone front end are identical in the way they work. In fact, if you bent the hydraulic lines from the pump to the column a wee bit you could use the hydraulic block from a 4 cyl in a 3 cyl and vice versa. They use the same seals, same plungers and springs in the hyd block, same upper thrust bearings and same steering cylinders and lines.
I think the pump on a 3 cyl is better as it's gear driven instead of belt driven but I would say the power assist provided by one model is as good as the other.
None of the wishbone PS systems are as good as the integral steering like you'd find in a late 3 cyl 4000 or 4600 as you can out run the hydraulics at low rpms on a wishbone type.
My pal Kenny's 4600 steers like a dream even at low rpms.

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