Compact track loaders are highly productive, especially with the right tracks on. They have a dedicated undercarriage and are usually equipped with rubber tracks, making them ideal for tackling delicate work surfaces and slippery inclines. However, tracks are not a one-type-fits-all component because they are available in different sizes and tread patterns. Read on to learn how to select the right rubber track treads for your compact track loader to ensure high performance.
Wide Tracks vs. Narrow Rubber Tracks
If you want to reduce ground disturbance on your job site for landscaping or turf application, consider wider rubber tracks for the best results. The wider your tracks are, the less ground pressure the equipment will exert. This is because they tend to distribute the machine’s weight uniformly over a greater surface area and increase its flotation, making working on soft soil more comfortable.
Narrower rubber tracks are a good choice for compact loaders when flotation is not much of a concern, but traction is your priority for the job. These components help concentrate the machine’s weight in a smaller surface area, increasing traction and ground pressure. They are ideal for working in icy or slippery conditions and maximizing the equipment’s push force on a surface.
Rubber Track Tread Patterns for Compact Track Loaders
You have many tread pattern options for CTL rubber tracks. Each has its strengths and weaknesses, making them perfect for specific jobs and ground conditions. Here are popular tread options for compact equipment tracks:
Staggered Block Tread
This tread is the standard pattern that manufacturers typically recommend. This includes Case, Bobcat, John Deere, Volvo, Takeuchi, Gehl, New Holland, and others. It is well-suited for operating on abrasive and hard surfaces such as gravel and paved highways and is the most general-purpose pattern available for compact track loaders. This pattern helps to enhance the longevity of tracks even when frequently operating on hot paved surfaces. In addition, they cause minimal ground disturbances when working on finished lawns and are suitable for dirt, clay, sand, asphalt, and mud.
C or H -Lug Tread
This rubber track tread pattern is similar to the staggered block tread. However, it has apertures in a sideways “C” cut out of each block, distinguishing it from the latter. The C-lug tread is the most flexible option across different terrains if you need to work both on and off-road. It is durable and has many cutting edges to allow superior handling, increase traction, and enhance performance. Moreover, it is designed to provide a smooth ride over many surface types such as sand, gravel, asphalt, concrete, mud, and clay.
Zig Zag Tread
This tread pattern can help maximize traction and is specifically designed for operators who frequently work compact loaders on muddy or wet terrain. It can significantly reduce the chances of getting stuck in the mud compared to C-lug or staggered block patterns. It is the least likely to damage finished turf, allowing you to pivot and operate at high or low speeds according to your needs. They are known for all-season traction and durability, offering superior performance on various terrains.
The multi-bar rubber track tread pattern is appropriate when you need to move back and forth between hard surfaces and loose ground cover. This tread design allows you to switch swiftly between the increased traction required for operating on loose ground and a smooth ride on paved surfaces. Moreover, compared to the straight bar tread pattern, multi-bar treads offer a smoother ride across terrains, including working in the snow.
Maximizing the Service Life of Your New Rubber Tracks
Sharp direction changes and counter-rotation are primary causes of premature undercarriage wear when operating a compact track loader. This is particularly valid when working over highly abrasive material. Counter-rotations may lead to cuts in your track, accelerating wear and tear.
The five essential factors that contribute to enhancing the overall service life of your rubber tracks are:
- Proper installation of the rubber tracks on your compact loader
- The ground condition that you are operating on
- Condition of your undercarriage and its components, such as the drive sprockets
- Experience, awareness, and expertise of your operator
- A thorough inspection and clean up after using the compact equipment
You can get the most extended life out of your tracks if you install them accurately as per the manufacturers’ specifications and have an experienced operator handle the compact equipment in a suitable environment. In addition, avoid spinning the tracks, specifically on abrasive grounds and use three-point turns to minimize the risk of track damage. Similar to counter-rotation, spinning can lead to undercarriage wear and cuts on the track. It helps to have a proper maintenance routine to ensure your tracks are in the desired condition and know whether they require replacement.
We Can Help You Choose the Right Rubber Track Tread Pattern
Tag Equipment is a prominent supplier of rubber tracks and high-quality attachments for compact equipment in Canada. We offer Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) quality at after-market prices for tracks and reliable guidance to help you choose the most suitable options for your machine, ensuring customer satisfaction. Our products are backed by the best non-prorated warranty.
Our Selection of Rubber Tracks for CTLs and Skid Steer loaders
- Camso CTL SD – Known for all-season traction and durability, offering superior performance on various terrains
- Camso CTL HXD – Ideal for excellent traction to reduce downtime on heavy-duty jobs
- Traxter CTL – Delivers the ultimate performance with a unique side roller compound to resist tears and cracks and a continuous steel cord for flexibility and strength
Whether you are looking for Bobcat tracks, over-the-tire tracks, or a specific tread pattern for your application, we can help you. We have a wide range of rubber tracks for all makes and models of compact loaders.
For more information about our selection, you can call us at 416-716-5850 or fill out our online contact form. We will be happy to guide you through and ensure you have the most suitable track for your machine.