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Exclusive Article

Talk of the Town:
Trailering a Tractor - Use Chains or Straps?

Another great discussion from the Tractor Talk Discussion Forum.

The discussion started out with the following post:

" I bought a trailer and plan to take my CASE VAS to some shows. I don't yet have anything to secure it to the trailer. So which is better to buy and use; the ratchet-type straps or binders and binder chains? "

What followed are some interesting replies:

" Straps are fine if they don't rub on anything, otherwise use chains and binders. It's basicaly just personal preferance. Just make sure whatever you use, the load rating limit is enough for what you are tying down. "

" I prefer chains, grade 70. Some people get along fine with straps. I always use a seperate chain for each corner of the tractor, that way if one chain breaks in a sudden stop there is always the second one still attached. A VA series Case weighs between 3000 and 4000 lbs. so 5/16" grade 70 chain would hold it through about anything. I think 3" wide straps would be comparable in strength. "

" I attend an equipment auction where some really nice pieces are sold occasionally and I have observed that these pieces are being tied down using an idea from the antique/classic car haulers. A loop of chain is formed around the top 20% of each rear tire and secured usually at the back of each rear wheel to the trailer. The front portion on the loop has a chain hooked to it and is secured to the front of the trailer. The tractor is put in neutral and a chain binder is tightened on the front chain. This is repeated to the remaining rear wheel. This effort removes the slack and secures the tractor to the trailer and the tractor is put back in gear. This method appears to afford a save method of transport and at the same time the paint is not damaged. As the chain is sitting only on rubber even the rims paint stay free on damage. The tires act as tensioners/shock absorbers and you are not constantly having to check to see if the binders are staying tight. "

" When you use chains and binders be sure to buy rachet binders, they are safer and easier to tighten up your slack. "

" I prefer chains to straps. I worked for a dealer that sold mostly compact tractors and I did a lot of the hauling. We used both chains and straps wichever was more convenient for the piece of equip. we were hauling. The straps always seemed to have a mile of extra tail on them, until they tore, then they were too short. On my tractors, I have a loop bracket bolted to the front to run a chain through, and put a clevis on the drawbar to run a chain through. This saves the paint. "

" When I haul lawnmower stuff, like a riding mower, I use straps with ratchets. When I move our MH50 I use 3/8 chains front and rear. I tighten the chains with appropriate ratchet load binders I got from Harbor Frieght. It's unlikely that big enough straps would fray or tear during a trip, but I know that 3/8 chain won't. "

This information was gathered at the Tractor Talk Discussion Board.

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