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Tractor Pulling Discussion Forum

A question

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03-21-2020 06:52:37

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I don't pull much anymore but I still love the sport at all levels of competition. My job is a lab tech in a small foundry here in central Illinois. Every once in a while we'll melt in a furnace that'll come up with a chemistry so screwed we pretty much hafta empty out and start over. Sometimes we can pour it on a inhouse casting that's not gonna get shipped nor does it hafta fall into good analysis parameters. Sometimes we gotta empty it into big cavities and send it to scrap which I hate to see because I used to be a furnace operator. Lot of hard work for nothing. I'm thinking if I could get the pattern shop to whittle out a pattern for tractor weights we could get rid of that iron that way and make something tractor pullers could use. My questions: would there be any kind of market for such a venture? How big would we cast em? What configuration would we want? (don't want to get any patent liability problem). Lots of stuff to think about. The end result would be a weight probably lighter than the 100 pounders most people use made out of ductile iron so ya ain't gonna break it, might be a little high in manganese or chrome but they'll work. Obviously the boss ain't let me do this for free so by the time we get a pattern made, pay for the additives and finishing (or not, we all got grinders ain't we?) it may not be cost effective. In other words you ain't gonna pay 110 for a something you can get for a 100 or less on the old interweb. And then there's shipping. That's a lot of weight. I ain't gonna waste the bosses time unless there's enough interest for me to do so. Tell me what you think. DP

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03-29-2020 09:32:12

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 Re: A question in reply to Dpittman, 03-21-2020 06:52:37  
I agree with Vic. The best weight would be 50# that's no more than 1/2" thick and who cares what the profile actually is. You won't be infringing on anyone's design if you just make it look generic. The biggest problem we run into in using factory suitcase weights is that they're too thick, which means you run out of weight bracket space. For example, Deere 40# weights are really nice, but they are like 2-1/2" thick and fill up a weight bracket fast and that's why we keep heavier weights around. Personally, I don't like handling 100# weights if I don't have to. I keep thinking one of these days I'm going to bite the bullet and just get a set of laser cut weights and be done with any factory weights.


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Indiana Ken

03-22-2020 07:37:59

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 Re: A question in reply to Dpittman, 03-21-2020 06:52:37  
I would think the idea is worth investigating. There are various suppliers of parts for old tractors...this site being one! Your company could inquire and see what interest if any there is.

One thing these suppliers should know is what the market would be for various weight types. For example, the Ford Pie weights fit many of the early Ford models and there are large numbers of these tractors in use.

So sad to see companies send supposed scrap to the scrap yard.

If nothing else you should be commended for thinking of it - maybe other applications/products will come from investigating the weight idea. Don't limit your focus to just weights or tractor weights.

BTW - As I write this I have been snacking on bite sized carrots. It is my understanding these carrots used to be discarded. Now they are sold as "Cut & Peeled Baby Carrots".

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03-22-2020 09:24:53

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 Re: A question in reply to Indiana Ken, 03-22-2020 07:37:59  
Thank you for the response. Unfortunately casting replicated weights would probably not happen for the simple fact our molding machine can't make a mold much bigger than 75#. Even if it could we'd stand a good chance of burning up the cooling belt and other stuff. I also think whoever holds the trademark on any tractor ever made would frown on us casting their weights without permission. We could modify the pattern to not be an exact replica but then there's the size problem. Our bread and butter is the railroad industry so I expect by the end of next month we'll be covered up with more ductile orders than we can deal with. My original thought was to make a weight that is lighter cheaper and made out of ductile. Again boss man may not want anything to do with it, or he might see another penny to pinch. And again these would only be made when we come up with a furnace we can't use on pieces parts they drive trains over. Which makes me wonder if supply could keep up with demand if they were a big hit. Again thanks for the input. DP

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03-21-2020 13:21:22

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 Re: A question in reply to Dpittman, 03-21-2020 06:52:37  
You can pattern the deere 20 series double stack weight starter. They weigh 225# and are worth $350.

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03-21-2020 11:12:59

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 Re: A question in reply to Dpittman, 03-21-2020 06:52:37  
their would be plenty of interest if price is right & are easy to mount.

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03-21-2020 09:27:45

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 Re: A question in reply to Dpittman, 03-21-2020 06:52:37  
IH style but 1" thick so they would weight roughly 50lbs would be popular w the pulling crowd, laser cut weight are NOT cheap !

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03-22-2020 10:49:59

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 Re: A question in reply to Earlyb, 03-21-2020 09:27:45  
Nothing over 50 lbs. 25 and 10 good also.

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03-21-2020 14:39:25

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 Re: A question in reply to Earlyb, 03-21-2020 09:27:45  
I would second this, 50lb IH pattern weights. IH weights typically bring $1.00/lb used. So you would need to compete with that.

I know there are a few JD dealers that have late model weights cast. Must be cheaper than buying them from Deere.

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03-21-2020 09:45:17

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 Re: A question in reply to Earlyb, 03-21-2020 09:27:45  
you need to have a friend with scrape, - then cheap

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03-21-2020 08:44:02

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 Re: A question in reply to Dpittman, 03-21-2020 06:52:37  
laser cut is fast cheap, smooth and easy.

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