A 3-point hitch is an essential part of almost all tractors today.This tool connects an agricultural or industrial tractor to plows and other implements. Using it will also give your tractor more usable traction. This article gives you a detailed descriptionOverview of 3-point hitches for tractors and their usein your daily farming work, along with diagrams to help you find the right hitch for your situation.
Table of contents
- 3-point hitches for tractors and their use
- Diagram of the dimensions of the 3-point hitch
- How does a tractor three-point hitch work?
- Category 0
- Category 1
- Restricted Category 1
- Category 2
- Category 3
- Category 4
- Narrow variants
- How do I connect a tractor 3-point hitch?
- Step 1: Connect the hitch to the rear of your tractor
- Step 2: Adjust the attachment
- Step 3: Adjust the stabilizers
- Step 4: Attach the PTO shaft
- How do you adjust a three-point hitch?
- frequently asked Questions
- 1. Are all tractor three-point hitches the same?
- 2. How much weight can a 3-point hitch lift?
- 3. What is the smallest tractor with a 3-point hitch?
- 4. What is the difference between category 1 and category 2 towbars?
- 5. What is the standard width of a 3-point hitch?
- last words
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3-point hitches for tractors and their use
A 3-point hitch (or 3-point hitch) is a simple connection between a tractor andan implement (or an attachment)B. in agricultural machines. Three point hitches look like triangles and consist of 3 moving parts: two lower arms controlled by the hydraulic system and the upper center arm or top link. By using a three-point hitch, you can transfer this implements weight and resistance to the drive wheels of the tractor with this connection. The invention of the 3-point hitch opened a new era in farming life as it helps farmers increase yields, reduce labor costs and increase tractor functionality. The first 3-point hitch was invented byHarry Fergusonin 1936. In 1938, Ferguson entered into a manufacturing agreement with the Ford Corporation to fit the first 3-point hitch to the 1939 Ford Model 9N tractors, which then became a great success for Ford. After the success of the 3-point hitch continued the Ford 9N series, other manufacturers started producing their 3-point hitches. By 1960 the specifications of theThe 3-point hitch has been standardizedin the agricultural industry by the American Society of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE 217) and then the International Association for Standardizations (ISO 730-1).
Diagram of the dimensions of the 3-point hitch
A 3-point hitch consists of the following 4 parts to attach a wheeled tractor to an implement:
- Tractor hydraulic system
- raise drums
- attaching parts
The diagram above shows how these parts of a 3-point hitch connect. These components are found in most category 0, 1, 2 and 3 towbars. A higher category hitch has stronger lift arms and larger connecting pins.
|Trailer hitch category||tractor power||Diameter upper link pin||Lift arm pin diameter||Reduced coupling distance|
|Category 0||Up to 20 hp||5/6”||5/8”||20”|
|Category 2||40-100PS||1"||1 1/8”||34"|
|Category 3||80-225 PS||1 ¼”||1 7/16”||40”|
|Category 4||>180 PS||1 ¾”||2"||48"|
How does a tractor three-point hitch work?
A 3-point trailer hitch is permanently attached to the rear of a tractor and consists of 2 lifting arms and an upper link with the following operating concepts:
- Two lift arms:The tractor's hydraulic system controls the up and down movement of these lift arms and the movement of the attachment.
- Top-Link:Keeps attached implement raised and lowered in the same vertical plane. Depending on your needs, you can adjust the length of the top link horizontally or inclined.
The receiver connection holes are located at the end of the lift arms and the top links. You can connect the three-point hitch to the equipment by connecting the holes to the equipment bolts. You can also quickly remove or attach different implements to the tractor depending on your work needs. The size of the connection hole depends on the category of the 3-point hitch. For example, a category 3 hitch is used with an 80-225 hp tractor. This hitch has a top link pin diameter of 1¼" and a lift arm pin diameter of 1-7/16".
General dimensions and categories
In general, three-point hitches are divided into 5 size classes from category 0 to category 4. However, they differ in the power of the attached tractor, the diameter of the top link pin, the diameter of the lift arm pin and the spacing of the lower links.
Category 0 three-point hitches are lightweight, and they fit farming implements that are 20" wide and 12" from bottom pin to top connector pins. A category 0 three-point hitch works with popular tractor brands such as John Deere, Bolens, Cub Cadet, Case and so on. And they can attach many implements such as tillers, plows, rear knives, cultivators, lawn mowers, etc. Category 0 three-point hitches were popular in the 1970s through the 1990s. So far they're only seen on used garden tractors and lawn tractors or vintage sub-compact tractors (like the Sotah Beaver). Due to increasing demands from farmers, new sub-compact tractor models work better with a Category 1 clutch.
Category 1 3-point hitches fit micro and compact tractorswith hp from 20 hp to 45 hp. This hitch has a ¾ inch top link pin diameter, a 7/8 inch lift arm diameter, and the two lift arms are 26 inches apart. As well as category size, you should consider your tractor's weight capacity to accommodate suitable implements. For example, my 6-foot Category 1 tailshield weighs 300 pounds, which is too heavy for my small Bolens sub-compact tractor.
Restricted Category 1
Restricted Category 1 three-point hitches can beUsed with some small sub-compact tractors.This type of hitch has the exact mounting dimensions as the category 1 hitch, but differs in the type of tractor, the movement of the lower links and their ground clearance.
Tractors with power from 40 hp to 100 hp can work with category 2 3-point hitches. These couplers use 1" top link pins and 1 1/8" lift arm pins with a lift arm spacing of 32" dimensions,Category 2 couplings can handle heavier implementsthan those of Category 1. For example, they can carry knives, box scrapers and rakes of heavier weights and sizes. If you already have a category 1 hitch you can change the pins or use sockets to get the diameter like a category 2 one. And vice versa, thanks to the interchangeable balls at the end of the lift arms, you can convert a category 2 hitch into a category 1 hitch.
You can use a Category 3 three-point hitch on tractors from 80 hp to 225 hp. This hitch has 1 ¼ inch top link pins and 1 7/16 inch lift arm pins and accepts all medium sized 3 point hitch implements such asRow hoes or field hoes.
Category 4 three-point hitches canWork with tractors from 180 hp.This hitch has a 1 ¾ inch top link pin diameter and a 2 inch lift arm pin diameter. The distance between two lift arm pins on this hitch type is approximately 46 inches.
In addition to the above categories, there are also N (narrow) coupling variants. These variants have the same pin diameters but a narrower width compared to their main categories.
A Category 3N hitch has a lift arm spacing of only 32 inches. You should be aware of the difference between these 3 point hitches when purchasing equipment as some category 3 hitches can be quickly converted to a category 3N hitch the same width as category 2 can also be used with the same equipment provided They attach bushings to the pins.
A Category 4N hitch has a slightly narrower lift arm spacing of 38 inches. You can often see these above narrow variants on "quick couplers" (e.g. John Deere iMatch quick coupler). These N variants allow heavy-duty tractors to be easily attached to smaller attachments.Continue reading: How to drive a tractor videoand guide. If you're new to tractors, this beginner's guide is for you! Learn about safety rules, read statistics and watch a helpful video.
How do I connect a tractor 3-point hitch?
After buying a tractor, the first thing to do is learn how to build a 3-point hitch. However, you can complete this task more easily by practicing it several times.
Step 1: Connect the hitch to the rear of your tractor
First look at the rear end of your tractor. You will notice one adjustable lift arm that can go up and down and the remaining one that is fixed. Start attaching the fixed arm to the right side of your tractor. Then adjust its height with a lynch pin until it aligns with the tractor.
Step 2: Adjust the attachment
After the fixed side is done you can move on to the adjustable lift arm. Try to adjust the lower link so that it aligns with the hole on the device. Then adjust the top link to the correct length to return to the attachment hole and insert a pin to finish. Finally, insert a pin through the top link and attachment to complete the process. Now the hitch has been successfully connected to the tractor. You can use the tractor to lift your implement.
Step 3: Adjust the stabilizers
You should adjust the stabilizers to avoid tractor tire damage. The stabilizers are the turnbuckles that go from the tractor axle to the lower 3-point lift arms. If you skip this step, the attachment will tilt back and forth. Some attachments and implements can tip so far that they hit and damage the tires of the tractor. So remember to adjust the stabilizers to keep the implement taut and protect your tractor's tires.Continue reading: How to change a tractor tire yourself. Changing a tractor tire can be a challenging task, but we'll show you step-by-step how AND link to a useful video!
Step 4: Attach the PTO shaft
Before attaching the PTO, you must turn off your tractor. Pull the boot back and slide it onto the PTO shaft until it clears the groove in the shaft. Then pull it back and loosen the collar to finish attaching the PTO shaft.
How do you adjust a three-point hitch?
If you have multiple implements and need to swap them out, you need to know how to adjust your 3-point hitch. You can customize your hitch by modifying its two main parts - the top link and the stabilizer bars. Please watch the following video to learn how to do it:
frequently asked Questions
1. Are all tractor three-point hitches the same?
No. There are 5 different 3-point suspensions. They differ in the dimensions of the triangle and the size of the connecting pins.
2. How much weight can a 3-point hitch lift?
The approximate maximum lifting weight of a 3-point hitch depends on the hitch category. For example, a category 0 hitch can lift up to 500 pounds, while a category 4 hitch can lift up to 20,000 pounds.
3. What is the smallest tractor with a 3-point hitch?
Category 0 tractor is the smallest tractor for a 3-point hitch - for example John Deere 140 H3.
4. What is the difference between category 1 and category 2 towbars?
The differences between the category 1 and category 2 3-point hitches are in their tractor horsepower, top link pin diameter (20-45 hp vs 40-100 hp), lift arm pin diameter (3/4 inch vs 1 inch) and closer hitch spacing (7/8 inch versus 1 1/8 inch).
5. What is the standard width of a 3-point hitch?
The standard width of a three-point hitch depends on which category you are looking at. For Category 1 three-point hitches, the standard width is 26 inches (with 7/8 lift pins, 3/4 top pin and 18 inches height). .For Category 2 3-point trailers, the standard width is 32 inches (with 1 1/8 lift pins, 1 top pin and 24 inches height). For Category 3 3-point trailers, the standard width is 38 inches (with 1 7/16 lift pins, 1 1/4 top pin and 27 inches height).Continue reading: Best excavator attachments for tractors. After testing the best tractor backhoe attachments, here are our thoughts and reviews!
The invention of3-point trailer for tractorshas helped revolutionize the agricultural industry since the 1930sWhat a 3-point hitch is and how it works, you can now use it to maximize your tractor's performance and increase your crop production.
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