Mitas high-horsepower tyres helped a Claas Axos 320 tractor weighing 4 tons to ‘walk’ on water. Without the massive flotation tyres the tractor would inevitably sink. But thanks to careful calculation and Archimedes’ principle the tractor successfully navigated the port and then returned to dry land without the captain getting his feet wet.
Mitas, part of Trelleborg Group, and its partners carried out the unusual stunt in Netherlands this month. One of the world’s largest agricultural tyres, Mitas1250/50 R 32 SFT, was fitted on the rear axle and Mitas 750/55 R 30 SFT on the front axle of the floating Claas tractor.
Pavel Kott, Product Manager for Mitas agricultural tyres, said: “Mitas is focused on what benefits farmers. Flotation tyres can not only make a yacht out of farmers’ tractors but it can also bring them higher yields thanks to lower soil compaction caused by flotation tyre during field operation.
“It is all about flotation. The combined volume of air in the mounted tyres made a 4-ton tractor walk on water. Imagine the gentle distribution of weight over soil when the machine does its day job.”
The experiment took place on September 14 in Offingawier, Netherlands. Together with its partners BOS mechanisatie, Gruva techniek and B&O Bandenservice, Mitas organized this event to showcase the potential of agricultural tyres with a clear link to the topic of soil compaction.
Bert Kuiper, Head of Sales Claas at Kamps de Wild, the Dutch importer of Claas, added: “We are excited to be part of this project which shows the possibilities of agricultural machinery from a different angle. We could never guess that our tractor would be walking on the water.”
The overall weight of the Claas Axos 320 tractor with a full fuel tank, front base weight and driver, was 4,068 kilograms. The volume of Mitas 1250/50 R 32 SFT is an impressive 2,157 liters, and 750/55 R 30 SFT boasts 685 liters at a nominal pressure of 2.4 bar.
Mitas 1250/50 R 32 SFT is designed for grain carts, combine harvesters and other powerful agricultural machinery. Mitas 1250/50 R 32 SFT 188A8/185B has a diameter of 2.02 meters and is capable of carrying loads of up to 14 metric tons (10 kilometers per hour, cyclic). Weighing in at 571 kilograms, this size of Super Flexion Tyre (SFT) is also the heaviest tyre in Mitas’ product portfolio. The tyre is available globally.