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The Differences Between Turf and Lug Treads:
TURF tread is typically found on most common riding mowers and lawn & garden tractors (mainly grass cutting equipment). Turf tread doesn't provide good traction on dirt for pulling heavy loads, but it's easy on grass. (Carlisle tires pictured.)
LUG tread is the traditional farm tractor or agricultural type of tread (angled with raised bars). Lug tread provides superior traction on dirt for pulling heavy loads, but it'll tear up grass. (Carlisle tires pictured. The 26-12.00x12 Super Lugs are no longer available.)
The rule of thumb for ALL pulling tractors is to get the front end as low as possible for better weight distribution and leverage. By doing this, the rear of the tractor or hitch is "raised up," and when the weight of the sled starts to place pressure on the hitch, this will make it harder to raise the front end. Causing the rear tires to bite more. Also, the front wheels (or tires) can be smaller because all they do is support the front weight of the tractor and steer. And the rear wheels (or tires) has to be bigger because they must support most of the weight and provide the traction.
|If you're interested in any of the parts or services below, please contact A-1 Miller's Performance Enterprises | 1501 W. Old Plank Rd. | Columbia, MO 65203-9136 USA | Phone: 1-573-875-4033. Please call Monday-Friday, 9am to 5pm, Central time. If no answer, please try again later. (When speaking with Brian, please be patient because I stutter.) Fax: 1-573-449-7347. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also contact us through Yahoo! Messenger: Find us here: Directions to our shop | Yahoo! Maps, 1501 W. Old Plank Rd., Columbia, MO | 1501 West Old Plank Road, Columbia, MO - Google Maps or Map of 1501 West Old Plank Road, Columbia, MO by MapQuest. Click here for more of my parts and services.|
Weld brace to reinforce spindle shafts for your narrow frame Cub Cadet: $25.00 parts and labor for two spindles, plus return shipping & handling.
Lower spindle shafts 2-3/8" on steering knuckles for your wide or spread frame Cub Cadet: $50.00 parts and labor for two spindles, plus return shipping & handling.
Do-it-yourself weld-in spindle shafts to lower front end on wide and spread frame Cub Cadets. NOTE: Cut off old shafts and drill a 3/4" hole 2-3/8" higher than original shafts in steering knuckles. Replacement shafts will need to be positioned perpendicular (90°) to the flat and then weld to backside of knuckle for non-interference with the spacing of the wheel. Has 3/8-16 NC threaded hole in end of each shaft for wheel retaining bolt/washer (not included). $30.00 per set of two, plus shipping & handling.
Always try to purchase pulling tires in a MATCHED SET!
The reason for this is because one tire could be slightly taller than the other (at the same air pressure), resulting in the tractor pulling to one side of the track at times. So get them from a reputable tire dealer who takes the time to mount and inflate them (at 10 p.s.i.), then writes the measurement of the circumference on each tire. The circumference of each tire can vary when not mounted and properly inflated. Because tires are stored stacked on one another or side by side on a rack, the circumference can't be accurately measured (when it isn't mounted and properly inflated).
If you're going to use Carlisle's 23-8.50x12 or 23-10.50x12 tires, you really need a set of 4 ply's to be competitive. The 2 ply tires have a tendency for the lugs to fold or bend back when under pulling force, causing the tires to lose traction. The 4 ply tires stiffens the entire tire, including the lugs. And always match the wheels to the size (width) of the tire! For example: for 8-1/2" wide wheels, it's best to use 23-8.50x12 tires. The middle number in the tire size represents the width of the sidewall bulge when the tire is fully inflated and mounted on the proper width wheel.
And if you're running a set of new 26-12.00x12 Carlisle tires, well, these tires can pull with the best of them when the lugs are professionally "double-cut." Cut or angled lugs act like a wedge that digs in and grip the dirt better to pull the vehicle further. To double-cut the lugs for more traction, first cut the backside of the lugs so they'll be at a 45º angle, more or less (slope them back). If a 45º angle don't look quite right, sharpen the lugs at a 30º angle, more or less. Then cut a wedge between the lugs (the flat part) about 1/4" deep so this area will grip the dirt, too.
By the way - the tire on the right, I bought a set of them new in 1989, and they have been sharpened only three times.
If you're wondering how to cut, sharpen or reshape tire lugs, personally, we use a 4" handheld angle grinder with a metal tread cutting disc to cut or reshape our tire lugs. Tread cutting or grinding makes a big mess, so you may want to do outside your shop. You can also use an electric wood planer to cut the lugs. Electric wood planers works great and they make little smoke.
"Professional" VS "Non-Professional" Pulling Tires -
Some pulling club's sanctioning rules state that "no professional pulling tires shall be used in a stock class," Ever wondered what a "professional" and "non-professional" pulling tire is? Well, professional pulling tires come from the factory with molded cut lugs. They're used mainly on the higher horsepower tractors for better traction. Non-professional pulling tires have squared lugs. They're used (when rules require them) mainly on stock pulling tractors, probably for economical reasons.
Non-professional pulling tires are:
Carlisle Super Lug (26-12.00x12 size no longer available), Firestone Flotation 23 (no longer available), McCreary Traxion and Titan/Carlisle Tru Power.
And when it comes to "hardening the tread," new tires come with soft rubber on the outer edge of the tread. As the thread wears, the rubber gets harder further down in the tread. All tires are like this, even automotive tires. For a pulling tire to grip the dirt better and to prevent the lugs from "laying back" when under pressure, the process of hardening the tread is to draw the oil from the rubber so the outer part of the tread will be harder. And the older a pulling tire gets, the better edge it will hold because the rubber dries out and gets hard.
Adjust or Set the Air Pressure for Best Traction!
When inflating your rear tires, add air pressure so that the entire width of the tread will lay flat (evenly) on the ground. Too little pressure will allow the outside edges of the tread to make most contact with the ground resulting in poor traction plus the tire will be shortened in overall height. The opposite will happen with too much pressure. With too little pressure, the hitch height will also be lowered when the tractor is pulling the sled.
As tire pressure varies from one tire manufacturer to another, and depending on the width of the wheels that's being used, it seems that Carlisle tires seems to work best with about 10 p.s.i. Cepeks seems to work best with 4-6 p.s.i., when mounted on 12"-13" wide wheels. But use your own judgment when inflating tires! Actually, this is how to tell if the pressure is right: on a hard, dry track, immediately after making a pull, look at the tread for uneven scraping before moving the tractor away from the sled (as this will destroy any evidence on the tread). If there's a lot of scraping in the center of the tread, let some air out of the tires.
If running very low air pressure however, it may be necessary to screw the wheels to the tires to prevent the beads from slipping on the rims. If using inner tubes, failure to do this might ruin the tube(s).
Pulling tire sizes are determined by the overall height, maximum width (including the side wall bulge) and the inside diameter. For example, 26-12.00x12 size represents that the tire is 26" tall (when fully inflated), has an overall width of 12" (bulge of sidewalls) and mounts on a 12" diameter wheel. These tires originally mount on 10.5" wide wheels, but for pulling purposes, it's best to mount them on 12" or 13" (which is better) wide wheels so the tread will lay flat. And mount 23-10.50x12 tires on 11" wide wheels so the tread will have better ground contact.
As far as wheel width is concerned, the correct width for most 26x12.00-12 pulling tires is 13" (when measured inside the bead lip - see drawing). Actually, the correct wheel width for any pulling tire should be equal to or slightly more than the middle number of the tire size (maximum side wall bulge). This allows all of the tread to lay flat on the ground when the tire is inflated to about 10 p.s.i. air pressure. If a wheel is too narrow, the center of the tread will make most contact with the ground. Air pressure can be reduced with narrow wheels for improved ground contact, but this will cause the circumference of the tires to become smaller and it'll also cause the hitch to lower when the sled's weight is on the tractor, losing valuable ground speed, traction and proper weight transfer.
(Added 9/7/12) If a pulling club's rules require that 23-10.50x12 [Carlisle Super Lug or Vogel] tires to be used, then these tires can be mounted on 12" wide wheels. I've seen this done many times on pulling tractors with great results. The wider wheels will allow the tire tread to lay flatter for better traction, but it'll also shorten the overall tire height slightly which will reduce the tractor's ground speed. Therefore, to regain the ground speed, if it's a Cub Cadet, perhaps installing 10% overdrive gears should do the trick. Also, 23-10.50x12 inner tubes may need to be installed to get the tire(s) to take air due to the wider wheels and narrow tires.
To determine the bolt pattern of a wheel (or mounting flange), measure from the outer edge of one bolt hole to the center of another that's farthest away.
Most rear garden tractor wheels have a 5-hole bolt pattern and a circle diameter of 4-1/2". This is the same bolt pattern used on most early domestic (American made) Ford (car wheels), domestic (American made) Chrysler, Dodge, Plymouth (cars and light trucks) and most 5-hole utility trailer wheels. The 12" trailer wheels can be widened to whatever width needs to be to match the tire to be mounted on it.
Adapting Wheels for Use with a Different Axle Flange Bolt Pattern -
When adapting Douglas or Real (no longer in production) aluminum wheels or ordinary garden tractor wheels to an axle flange with a different bolt pattern, new holes will need to be drilled in the flanges. For precision accuracy and so the wheels will not move "up and down" when rotating, the holes in the flanges must be drilled in a super spacer that's fastened on the table of a milling machine. The bolt pattern for most garden tractor wheels is 4.500". This means that the center of the super spacer needs to be moved 2.250" offset. Then each hole will need to be drilled precisely in five positions, starting at 0°, then at 72°, 144°, 216° and finally at 288°. If the holes are not drilled this way, the wheels will not be centered with the axles. Automotive wheels can be adapted to another vehicle using this method too, as long as the flange is big enough to accept a larger bolt pattern. IE: Using Chevy car wheels on a Ford 9" truck rear end.
Remember - when choosing or widening a set of rear wheels, buy them or have them made so they'll set as close as possible to the tractor frame. This will allow for a narrow wheel base width on the rear because it's hard to guide a tractor with one's body weight when the rear wheels set out a lot. The reason for this is if a tractor starts heading toward the boundary line, one would need to shift their body weight or lean less with [rear] tires that set inward or closer together. Narrowing of the fenders may need to be done in order to position the wheels close as possible to the frame. That way, the operator can lean less. Move and reweld the centers in steel wheels if necessary to accomplish this.
To move or relocate the centers in steel wheels...
What does "offset" of the wheel mean?
The offset of the wheel is where the center is positioned in the wheel. If a wheel has a 4" x 8" offset, this means that the center is positioned or measured 4" from the backside and 8" from the front side. This particular offset sets the wheels outward from the tractor frame. The 6" x 6" wheels are centered and not offset, which sets the wheels closer to the frame.
Using Aluminum Wheels On A Cub Cadet That's Equipped With External Brakes -
The older 6" x 6" centered Douglas aluminum wheels will not clear external brakes. If you are a weight-conscience puller, use spacers that's 5/16" thickness made of either steel, aluminum or hard solid plastic to provide clearance for the external brakes and/or fenders. Drill holes in each spacer for the lug bolts and use longer (and hardened) bolts to mount the wheels. The new style Douglas wheels now have a larger center which allows their use on external disc brake Cub Cadet transaxles without the need for wheel spacers.
If you are worried about the excessive rotating mass weight of using STEEL spacers, the diameter of the spacers are so small, they won't effect the spinning weight which slow down tires. It's not like running large diameter wheel weights. If you make your own spacers, make sure they're trued up in a metal lathe. And use a Super Spacer or Indexing Fixture to accurately locate and bore the holes for the lug bolts/studs.
If you're using the older Douglas aluminum wheels with the deep drop-center, be leery about using inner tubes. It'll be best to run the tires tubeless with silicone tire sealant applied around the rims and tire beads because with tubes, the deep area in the wheel could stretch the rubber a little too much and blow out the tube. But if you're using the newer style wheels with a shallow drop-center, then it should be safe to run inner tubes.
How to Widen Steel Wheels -
If you have a set of 5" wide wheels (measured on the inside lip of the rim), then 8" wide of rolled metal will need to be added in the wheels to make them 13" wide. To do this, you will need to...
How to weld the flat steel to the drop-center section of the wheel halves:
If inner tubes are going to be used (which is recommended), grind the bead of weld smooth. But if they're going to be tubeless, grind off the "high spots" in the weld so the tire bead won't get damaged when mounting the tire on the wheel. NOTE: It's best to use inner tubes with welded-together wheels. Because if it's not a superior welding job, air can seep out through the weld bead. And as with any tubeless tire, it's best to sand smooth the inner rims on the wheel, paint the inside for lasting protection and then apply silicone sealant or "bead sealant" on the inside of the rim to prevent air leakage. If the tire slowly looses air over time, try some SLIME Flat Tire Repair. This stuff works great!
|Adam Jannene of Burlington,
WI. Phone: 1-262-210-2842 | E-mail:
email@example.com. Custom widening
of 12" steel wheels. Wheels are cut (split) and widened with a steel band.
They are finished and ready to clean and paint. (As of 1/11)
For TWO wheels:
Or: Kevin Allicks, 23741-1950 East St., Ohio, IL 61349 | Phone:
How to Dismount and Mount Tires -
DISCLAIMER: The below is the old fashioned and manual way to mount and dismount tires. It works great for steel wheels, but if you don't feel comfortable using a hammer next to expensive aluminum wheels, spend a few dollars and take them to a reputable automotive tire repair shop and have them mount the tires with a tire changing machine. And if the tires are mounted tubeless, have the tire tech person apply plenty of tire sealant on both the tire bead and wheel rim for a leakproof seal.
Dismount a tire from the wheel:
Mount the tire on a wheel:
If you don't feel like using a lot of manual labor as described above, then what you probably need is a manual bead breaker and tire changer from Harbor Freight Tools. This works great for breaking the beads on and changing automotive and rear garden tractor tires. For stability, fasten it to a concrete floor or on a wide, heavy steel plate with hardened bolts. For more information on this quality tool from Harbor Freight Tools, It's item number 34542, or find it on eBay.
Harbor Freight offers a smaller bead breaker. It's item number 98875 or find this on eBay. Another small bead breaker is available from Russell Karting Specialties, 500 S. Lincoln, Raymore, Missouri 64083, Phone: 1-816-322-3330, Fax: 1-816-322-2860, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Repairing a Pin Hole in an Inner Tube -
Purchase an inner tube patch kit. Before you smear the sealant on the tube, be sure to thoroughly clean the area first with cleaning solvent, and light the sealant with a match, let it burn for a few seconds and then blow it out and then apply the patch. Use the roller to secure it in place. This is called hot patching. It holds the patch in place better.
When sharpening the tread on a pulling tire, sometimes the grinding disc will cut through the cords, creating a hole in the tread area of the tire. When this happens, all hope for the [expensive] tire is not lost. Simply have a tire repair shop install a boot, which is a large, thick patch, over the cut place on the inside of the tire and then install an inner tube in the tire. The purpose of "boot" repair is to fix a tear in the tread. This is necessary to prevent the inner tube from poking through the hole once the tire is inflated.
By the way - most people call wheels "rims." This is wrong. A rim is the outer part or edge of a wheel that holds the tire bead in place. And a "wheel" is the whole thing, including the rim and center section.
Webster's dictionary defines the word Rim as:
[Middle English, from Old English rima; akin to Old Norse rimi strip of land]
First appeared 13th Century
1: the outer often curved or circular edge or border of something
2: the outer part of a wheel joined to the hub usually by spokes
3: a removable outer metal band on an automobile wheel to which the tire is attached
Original Pit Bull Pulling Tire:
Free Pit Bull II tire sticker:
Pit Bull II tires are completely different from the Original. Improved
To make it easier to mount wheels on the rear of a garden tractor, there are three ways to install studs in the axle flanges:
Only on tractors with an internal brake:
Only on tractors with external disc brakes:
By installing studs to mount the wheels, ordinary, chrome-plated or stainless steel tapered-seat automotive lug nuts can be used to secure the wheels. To use lug nuts with steel garden tractor wheels, drill the mounting holes to 21/32" diameter, to make up the difference because of the larger taper that's on the automotive lug nuts. Any hardware store should carry a 21/32" drill bit. No other size bit will allow the lug nuts to seat properly, keep them tight and keep the wheel centered. But for aluminum wheels that have 1/2" mounting holes, drill the holes in the axle flanges larger and install a set of 1/2-20 (fine thread) bolts or studs and matching lug nuts to keep the wheels centered with the axles.
If you need any of the items listed below for your garden tractor, please contact A-1 Miller's Performance Enterprises | 1501 W. Old Plank Rd. | Columbia, MO 65203-9136 USA | Phone: 1-573-875-4033. Please call any day, 9am to 5pm, Central time. If no answer, please try again later. (When speaking with Brian, please be patient because I stutter.) Fax: 1-573-449-7347. E-mail: email@example.com. You can also contact us through Yahoo! Messenger: Find us here: Directions to our shop | Yahoo! Maps, 1501 W. Old Plank Rd., Columbia, MO | 1501 West Old Plank Road, Columbia, MO - Google Maps or Map of 1501 West Old Plank Road, Columbia, MO by MapQuest.
Plastic Wheelie Bar Wheels with spherical (rounded) tread surface. Dimensions: 5" tall x 2" wide x 5/8" center hole. $8.00 per pair, plus shipping & handling. Part # 07-11819
4" Two-Piece, Bolt-Together Steel Wheel. Painted white. Dimensions: 4" diameter x 2-1/2" wide x 2-1/8" width centered hub. Use with inner tube. Less bearings. Two wheels weighs 3 lb. 8 oz. $21.00 each, plus shipping & handling.
5" Two-Piece, Bolt-Together Steel Wheel. Painted white. Dimensions: 5" diameter x 2-3/4" wide x 2-1/4" width centered hub. Use with inner tube. Less bearings. Two wheels weighs 4 lb. 6 oz. $25.00 each, plus shipping & handling.
6" Two-Piece, Bolt-Together Steel Wheel. Painted white. Dimensions: 6" diameter x 3-1/4" wide x 3-1/2" width centered hub. Use with inner tube. Less bearings. Two wheels weighs 5 lb. 4 oz. $30.00 each, plus shipping & handling.
Heavy duty, low speed (up to 5 mph), oil-impregnated metal graphite flanged wheel bushing for Cub Cadets with 3/4" diameter front spindles and wheels with 1-3/8" inside diameter. Oil impregnated means the hardened metal is porous to absorb oil and grease so it will last longer. The oil acts as a cushion between the bearing and shaft, adding resistance to wear. These last a long time as long as they're lubricated with grease (chassis lube) once a year. If there is no grease fitting in the hub of the wheel, then one will need to be installed. Universal fit. Dimensions: 3/4" i.d. x 1-3/8" o.d. x 1" width x 1-1/2" o.d. flange. Replaces Cub Cadet part # IH-384881-R94. $3.50 each, plus shipping & handling. Our part # 09-3305-3/4
Heavy duty, low speed (up to 5 mph), oil-impregnated metal graphite flanged wheel bushing for Cub Cadet "Original" front wheels. Dimensions: 7/8" i.d. x 1-3/8" o.d. x 1" width x 1-1/2" o.d. flange. These are the same as above except I bore them to 7/8" in my metal lathe. $5.00 each, plus shipping & handling.
Heavy duty, low speed (up to 5 mph), oil-impregnated metal graphite flanged wheel bushing for Cub Cadets with 1" diameter front spindles and 1-3/8" inside diameter wheels. Dimensions: 1" i.d. x 1-3/8" o.d. x 1" width x 1-1/2" o.d. flange. These are the same as above except I bore them to 1" in my metal lathe. $8.00 each, plus shipping & handling.
Heavy duty, low speed (up to 20 mph), sealed (both sides) w/grease ball bearing flanged front wheel bearing. These have hardened, heated-treated steel races and roller balls inside and are pre-packed with grease so they will last longer. Dimensions: 3/4" i.d. x 1-3/8" o.d. x 1/2" width (3/8" fits inside wheel hub) x 1-1/2" o.d. flange. Universal fit for many makes and models of garden tractors. Will hold up to a lot of weight and rough abuse. Replaces Cub Cadet part # IH-384881-R94. $6.00 each, plus shipping & handling. Our part # 150-020
Heavy duty, low speed (up to 20 mph), sealed (both sides) ball bearing flanged front wheel bearing. These have hardened, heated-treated steel races and roller balls inside and are pre-packed with grease so they will last a long time. Dimensions: 1" i.d. x 2" o.d. x 9/16" width (1/2" fits inside wheel hub), flange o.d. is 2-1/8". Universal fit. Will hold up to a lot of weight and rough abuse. Replaces Cub Cadet part # 941-3002. $8.00 each, plus shipping & handling. Our part # 150-023
|NOTE: Other sizes and styles of bearings and bushings are available. Please let us know what you need and I can probably get it for you at a reasonable price.|
7/16-20 NF x 1-1/2" long (thread length) hardened steel screw-in studs for easier mounting of wheels on rear axle flanges. Made in USA NOTE: Not for tractors with external brake disc welded to axle.
7/16-20 NF hardened steel screw-in studs for easy mounting of wheels on rear axle flanges with external disc/axle brakes. Made in USA Each set includes 10 studs and 10 jam nuts.
|7/16-20 NF open-end zinc-plated lug/wheel nuts for steel wheels. NOTE: The mounting holes in steel wheels will need to be drilled (enlarged) to 21/32" diameter, to allow these lug nuts to seat properly, stay tight and keep the wheel centered. $20.00 per set of 10, plus shipping.||7/16-20 NF closed-end chrome acorn lug nuts for steel wheels. NOTE: The mounting holes in wheels will need to be drilled (enlarged) to 21/32" diameter, to allow these lug nuts to seat properly, stay tight and keep the wheel centered. $25.00 per set of 10, plus shipping.|
|If you need some new, heat treated OEM-quality tie-rod or aircraft-quality
ball joint ends, please contact A-1 Miller's Performance Enterprises | 1501
W. Old Plank Rd. | Columbia, MO 65203-9136 USA |
Phone: 1-573-875-4033. Please
call Monday-Friday, 9am to 5pm, Central time. If no answer, please try again
later. (When speaking with Brian, please be patient because I stutter.)
firstname.lastname@example.org. You can
also contact us through Yahoo! Messenger:
Find us here:
Directions to our shop |
Yahoo! Maps, 1501 W. Old Plank Rd., Columbia, MO |
1501 West Old Plank Road, Columbia, MO - Google Maps or
Map of 1501 West Old Plank
Road, Columbia, MO by MapQuest.
New, Heat-Treated Tie Rod and Ball Joint Ends -
Here's the most common for direct replacements found on most lawn & garden tractors:
Do-it-yourself weld-in spindle shafts to lower front end as much as 2-3/8" on wide and spread frame Cub Cadets. NOTE: To install, cut off old shafts and drill a 3/4" hole 2-3/8" higher than original shafts in steering knuckles. Replacement shafts will need to be positioned perpendicular (90°) to the flat and then weld to backside of knuckle for non-interference with the spacing of the wheel. Has 3/8-16 NC threaded hole in end of each shaft for wheel retaining bolt/washer (not included). Machined from hardened grade 5 bolts. $22.00 per set of two, plus shipping & handling.
Installation Service: Install spindle shafts to lower front end as much as 2-3/8" on your wide and spread frame Cub Cadet. $50.00 parts and labor for two spindles, plus return shipping & handling.
Installation Service: Weld brace to reinforce spindle shafts for your narrow frame Cub Cadet: $25.00 parts and labor for two spindles, plus return shipping & handling.
Linked pages to our parts & services:
A-1 Miller's Performance
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