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Hydro Controls


ComancheStarFarms

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I’m looking at purchasing a large frame Hydro.  However, I need some explanations on how to properly drive one.  1.  The dash console lever on the right moves the transmission into high speed range or low speed range - should lever forward be the fast or slow speed?  2.  The lever on the left dash console moves the tractor forward in the forward position & backwards in the rear position plus increases or decreases ground speed based on how far the lever is away from the centered position - correct?  3.  For pulling a 15’ PTO bush hog over a pasture where should I anticipate the levers should be?  4.  What about something like lighter duty hay raking?  Any rules of thumb would be useful.  Thanks in advance - Jonathan 

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If you are going less than 8mph you should use low range. You shouldn't pull anything that requires more drawbar pull then it will make at 3mph for long periods of time. They will pull a lot  more for short time, I  had mine up on it's rear tires spinning both tires, Loaded 18.4R38 with 12 weights up front.

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I'm pretty sure the hydros aren't the delicate flowers that they're often made out to be on this and other forums. You're not going to "do it wrong" or "break something" by feeling it out just like you would with a gear drive tractor. Start slow and work your way up.

If something does break, it was ready to break, and nothing you did caused it. The seller either wasn't aware of the impending doom, or lied to you about it.

About the only "culture shocks" I can think of with running a hydro is that you vary the speed with the hydro lever not the engine, and stop by bringing the hydro lever back to center not pushing the clutch pedal and coasting. 

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The hydrostatic units in construction equipment need the engine spinning at its rated speed.

 Do not think you are doing the unit a favor by throttling back.

 Work done equals heat. Work done at a lower engine speed equals the same heat, with less oil flow.

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1. Range lever on rt side- L

                                           N

                                           H

2. Correct. The pattern of toward the cowl and ahead = forward, sideways= change direction/no motion, and away from cowl and back = reverse is good for 656/826/1026 series. Not sure where the Hydro 70/100 pattern is, but my 186 had forward= away from cowl and ahead, middle/sideways= change, reverse= toward cowl and back. Just a little learning curve.

3. A 15' bush hog would probably take engine @ PTO speed, low range and about halfway ahead on the speed lever, depending on how thick the grass is and how sharp your blades are. Tractor will tell you if you are pushing speed too much- if so, just back the lever off a little. That's the beauty of the Hydro.

4. For lighter work like raking, I use half throttle, about half speed, and high range. My fields are not smooth like boulevards, so 6-9 mph is just fine for me.

Matt Kirsch has a good point above, about delicate. I have been using a hydro since 1971, when Dad bought a new 826. Which promptly got hooked to a 550 5-16" plow. I plowed about 200+/- acres a year until the 826 got traded toward a new 1086 in 1978 or 79. With no hydro issues except the blown oil cooler line later in its tenure. Now, I have a different 826 hydro and several 656 hydros. I tell everyone when I'm showing them how to run one, after the tractor is started, keep your left foot on the floor and control motion with just the left hand lever (and brakes if needed- which shouldn't be very often).

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5 hours ago, Matt Kirsch said:

I'm pretty sure the hydros aren't the delicate flowers that they're often made out to be on this and other forums. You're not going to "do it wrong" or "break something" by feeling it out just like you would with a gear drive tractor. Start slow and work your way up.

If something does break, it was ready to break, and nothing you did caused it. The seller either wasn't aware of the impending doom, or lied to you about it.

About the only "culture shocks" I can think of with running a hydro is that you vary the speed with the hydro lever not the engine, and stop by bringing the hydro lever back to center not pushing the clutch pedal and coasting. 

I agree with everything Matt has said.

After a major engine overhaul, I would hook it to the dyno wind it up until up to temperature.

Then I would lite a cigarette and throw the nuts to it.

It would set at full horsepower for 15 minutes or more.

All the time I was listening for any signs of doom.

You will usually hear it before it goes, "BOOM".

Being gentle only delays the inevitable. Use it and don't abuse it!

PS: Use the mechanical advantage of low range whenever you can but don't be afraid of high range if it works well for you.

 

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9 hours ago, supermechanic said:

The hydrostatic units in construction equipment need the engine spinning at its rated speed.

 Do not think you are doing the unit a favor by throttling back.

 Work done equals heat. Work done at a lower engine speed equals the same heat, with less oil flow.

This is what I have been told higher RPM is better than lower because oil flow increases with RPM along with lubrication and cooling . 

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I appreciate everyone’s help.  Can anyone tell me how to properly use the lever on the right (on a gear tractor it would be the two levers for shifting gears)?  I would guess that forward increases speed while back (aft) decreases speed.  But with the only two Hydros I’ve checked out it is the opposite - - forward is slow & aft is fast.  How should it be?

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5 minutes ago, ComancheStarFarms said:

I appreciate everyone’s help.  Can anyone tell me how to properly use the lever on the right (on a gear tractor it would be the two levers for shifting gears)?  I would guess that forward increases speed while back (aft) decreases speed.  But with the only two Hydros I’ve checked out it is the opposite - - forward is slow & aft is fast.  How should it be?

Low was forward until the 86 Series when they reversed the scheme.

We have a 186 with 16k on the original hydro. Always shaded to the higher side of the rpms but not excessive, especially in close quarter work where throttle down for safety was the rule like anything else. Generally it's been treated like a gear drive but with the eye on the realities of the system where more oil is better.

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41 minutes ago, ComancheStarFarms said:

I appreciate everyone’s help.  Can anyone tell me how to properly use the lever on the right (on a gear tractor it would be the two levers for shifting gears)?  I would guess that forward increases speed while back (aft) decreases speed.  But with the only two Hydros I’ve checked out it is the opposite - - forward is slow & aft is fast.  How should it be?

Hydro control in neutral, clutch and brake pedals depressed to shift range 

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8 hours ago, ComancheStarFarms said:

Thanks again to all.  We picked up a nice looking (& seems nice running) 1026 today - much of my decision based on your help.

Keep the advice, suggestions & proper methods of driving this tractor coming!

Love my 1026

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9 hours ago, ComancheStarFarms said:

Thanks again to all.  We picked up a nice looking (& seems nice running) 1026 today - much of my decision based on your help.

Keep the advice, suggestions & proper methods of driving this tractor coming!

ahh- a 1026. One tractor I always wanted but still don't have. And probably never will. Pictures??

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