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Heavy Equipment Forum Trac Hoe, Back Hoe, Dozers, etc.

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Old 01-17-2010, 11:47 AM
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Default I fought a 600 pound Gumby....4 times!

Well, I did have assistance from my wife. Otherwise, I think I would have lost for sure. I didn't realize how physically difficult it would be to change the tracks on my compact excavator. I think my little excavator is in the 6 ton class and the new rubber tracks for it just didn't look that big. Besides, I've changed the tracks and taken steel tracks off to repair idlers etc. a dozen times or more on far larger pieces of equipment. I guess I just wasn't prepared to deal with what basically amounts to a steel track encased in heavy rubber. Not heating my barn the night before assured the rubber would be nice and stiff too. Dunce!

Anyway, it's hard to describe how difficult it is to handle a 620 pound loop of rubber with a steel core. All movements feel dampened and so so heavy! It really wasn't a problem to get the old tracks off, but just dragging and rolling them out of the way was just so draining. I have a fork lift, but I didn't want to take a chance of cutting or damaging the new tracks, so everything was done by hand. All that had to be done was to pick up one end of the new track and get it put over the rear sprocket. Then pull it tight and put the front up over the idler. The inside of the rubber tracks have what amounts to a giant chain in the middle with inner teeth to keep them on the idler and keep the track lined up on the sprocket. I'm sure all the Snow Cat guys are familiar with stiff rubber tracks. I just don't think the tracks have a steel core and are as heavy though. Feel free to tell me if they do.

I think even my eyeballs are sore today. My back hurt the most right after the job, but it's okay now. I'd start describing what all hurts but I don't know where it would end. My hands and forearms are so sore it's hard to even type. I guess this old man is really out of shape. I knew we'd handle basically 4 tracks; two off and then two on. It just didn't seem like it would be that physically taxing. But, it's done now and the new tracks look great and should last me forever. The last tracks lasted 2500 hours. I'll never put another 2500 hours on the machine. Here are a few pictures of the Gumby beasts.
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Old 01-17-2010, 12:18 PM
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Default Re: I fought a 600 pound Gumby....4 times!

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Old 01-17-2010, 12:31 PM
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Default Re: I fought a 600 pound Gumby....4 times!

Stop your crying! You got the wife to clean everything up for you while you popped a beer.LOL Tracks are never a fun job. When I would change or repair them I used the backhoe as much as possible but it is still a lot of work. Never dealt with the rubber ones but I am sure they are a wrestling match. You will actually be able to go in mud now.
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Old 01-17-2010, 03:31 PM
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Default Re: I fought a 600 pound Gumby....4 times!

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Originally Posted by muleman View Post
Stop your crying! You got the wife to clean everything up for you while you popped a beer.LOL Tracks are never a fun job. When I would change or repair them I used the backhoe as much as possible but it is still a lot of work. Never dealt with the rubber ones but I am sure they are a wrestling match. You will actually be able to go in mud now.
LOL, isn't it the truth!? I feel, um, well, old today. When I was lifting competitively I was always more sore the 2nd day after a workout. That's me still. Today is day two. I'll have to take a picture of the inside of my forearm and show the pull that's actually visible. Like you, I've used backhoes, other trackhoes, forklifts and whatever to help changing tracks. As expensive as these rubber tracks are, I wasn't about to risk cutting or ripping one.

At least it's done now. Hopefully, as like you mentioned, I will be able to go in the mud now. I think from the picture you can tell that the old tracks were pretty well shot. It was getting old having to pull myself everywhere with the stick. My wife actually said she would be interested in learning how to operate the machine! When she saw all that it could do she's already dreaming up all sorts of landscaping ideas. As long as she doesn't knock down the house or dig up something, I've got no problem with my wife being able to hop on the excavator, tractor, track loader etc. and go after it. Now, where is that Ben-Gay LOL!
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Old 01-28-2010, 05:51 PM
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Default Re: I fought a 600 pound Gumby....4 times!

bv 206 tracks are just as bad and about the same weight they are also longer and wider and with no support they are like handeling a drunk that is passed out
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Old 09-30-2010, 10:10 AM
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Default Re: I fought a 600 pound Gumby....4 times!

The guy that worked at our place with a 4 ton machine threw a track but he used the stick to pull it back on. He's the guy who while standing around at 60$ an hour was asked to help out leveling the septic tank and said,"I'd love to but I'm allergic to shovels"
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