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Red 4WD Tractors

Red 4WD Tractors
by Lee Klancher

Octane Press, 2017

"All the colors of tractors and the people who made them have good stories, and those stories share a common thread: innovative farm boy geniuses who built solutions to a problem rooted in the growing American farm," writes Lee Klancher in his introduction to this substantial history of high-horsepower four-wheel-drive tractors manufactured by International Harvester, Steiger, J.I. Case and Case IH.

This history covers six decades from the winter of 1957 -- when Douglass and Maurice Steiger converted a Cat DW-15 scraper into a high-horsepower farm tractor in their dairy barn in order to make their Minnesota family farm more efficient -- to the present day. In eight separate chapters, Klancher and contributors track four-wheel drive development in tractors from turn of the century experimentation to the first farm production models (1950-1969), the "Steiger Age" (1969-1986), the "Red Revolution" (1970-1984), IH tractors abroad (1960-1985), the hard times at Case and Case IH (1986-1994), the resurgence of the Steiger brand (1995-2006) and its innovations in the 21st century (2006-2017).

Red 4WD Tractors

Altogether, these pages document broad fields of mechanical, technological and cultural history through the life stories of some of the most powerful and capable tractors ever built. Interviews with the designers and manufacturers of these machines provide an inside glimpse of the processes of innovation and product development. Concept drawings, prototypes, test mules and numerous product photos illustrate the text.

Look to the index for reference to any of the hundreds of tractors mentioned in the book, and to the Red 4WD Tractors Model List in the Appendix for a itemization detailing the years they were built.

Manhattan Cocktail by Susan Osborne
Case IH Steiger 620 Quadtrac Tractor

The big news in 2014 was power and efficiency. The new Steiger 620 offered 682 maximum horsepower, with another 35 horsepower available through the power boost feature.

"For our tractor, the biggest engine in the fleet, getting the right amount of mixing volume in the right amount of substrate volume and packaging that into a package that would fit decent on the tractor, and all work, was a huge challenge," said Tier 4A and 4B project manager David Tveito.

The larger muffler and a big cam were both key parts of the development - and making sure the muffler wasn't so big it obstructed vision was a concern. The two-stage turbocharger was key to this. Intake air went into one turbo, then went into the second turbo, and then was cooled down with water. After traveling through two turbos and two intercoolers, the air went into the engine. The whole system used comparably short intake tracts so air moved through this quickly.

The result was quicker engine response and more horsepower. Coupled with the SCR system, the engine also produced lower emissions. Other upgrades included refinements to the cab, improved controls, and a fuel-saving shift management tool.




Red Combines 1915-2015
Red Combines 1915-2015

Red 4WD Tractors
Red Tractors 1958-2013

Deep Lug R-1 Tires
Deep Lug R-1 Tires

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