UNDERCARRIAGE AND RUBBER TRACK
WEAR AND CARE GUIDE
Approximately 20% of your crawlers purchase
price is for undercarriage. More importantly,
nearly 50% of your maintenance costs will go
into maintaining it.
The information provided below is for
maintaining and getting the most out of your
undercarriage and tracks. It is not a repair
manual. This guide will show you what causes
wear and provides you with the best method to
maximize your production. By checking wear
patterns on key components often and
understanding the causes of wear, you will be
equipped to make the best maintenance decisions
What can cause wear?
An undercarriage works as a system. When a
machine is in motion, there will be normal
unavoidable wear. With good undercarriage
maintenance and operating techniques, the rate
of wear can be reduced.
Maintenance practices that can reduce wear are:
1. Track tension or
|2. Track Width
Correct tension on smaller
rubber track machines is about 3/4 to 1
Correct tension on larger rubber track machines
can be as much as 2.
Please refer to your owners manual for
Track tension and track sag affect wear.
The most important controllable factor in
undercarriage wear is correct track adjustment.
Correct track sag for all smaller mini excavator
rubber track units is 1 (+ or 1/4). Tight
tracks can increase wear up to 50%. On larger
rubber tracked crawlers in the range of 80
horsepower with 1/2 track sag results in 5,600
pounds of track chain tension when measured at
the track adjuster. The same machine with the
suggest track sag results in 800 pounds of track
chain tension when measured at the track
adjuster. A tight track magnifies the load and
puts more wear on the link and sprocket tooth
contact. Increased wear occurs at the track-link
to idler contact point and track-link to roller
contact points. More load means more wear on the
entire undercarriage system.
Also, a tight track requires more horsepower and
more fuel to do the job. Follow these steps to
adjust track tension:
|1. Move the machine forward,
|2. Let the machine roll to a
|3. A track link must be centered
over the carrier roller.
|4. Put a straight edge over the
track from the carrier roller to the
|5. Measure the sag at the lowest
Track width makes a
Select the narrowest tracks possible for your
machine. The O.E.M. provided width track
provided for your machine has been chosen
because it optimizes that particular machines
performance. Make sure they give you the
floatation you need. Wide tracks used on hard
surfaces will put an increased load on the track
link system and can affect link retention in the
rubber track. A wider than necessary track also
increases stress and loads on the idlers,
rollers, and sprockets.
The wider the track and the harder the
under-track surface, the faster the track
treads, links, rollers, idlers, sprockets will