There are many different types of tractors in today’s marketplace. Depending on its expected use, there is a tractor available to accomplish nearly any task. By definition, a tractor delivers high torque at low speeds. This is ideal for working the rugged land back when our country was more focused on agriculture in the 19th century. The first types of tractors were steam powered, and used for pulling a plow. The steam engine tractors were replaced by the combustion engine tractors in the twentieth century, once combustion engines were determined to be reliable. Although most people would think of a tractor as only being found on a farm, plowing a field or harvesting a field of crops, there are actually several different tractors that have uses outside of a farm.
A standard tractor has a fixed distance between its front wheels, while a tricycle-style tractor will have just one front wheel, or two front wheels very close together. The farm tractor, or agricultural tractor, has come a long way since its early inception. Different types of hitches were developed in order to pull different types of plows, wagons, or farm harvesting equipment. There are a few world famous companies that make these types of tractors. One of them has all of their equipment painted green and yellow.
A much smaller version of this type of tractor is the lawn tractor. Used mainly for mowing or landscaping, the lawn tractor can be used to pull much smaller versions of wagons, or pull other light agricultural or landscaping equipment. A slightly larger version of the lawn tractor is called a compact utility tractor. This tractor can be used for larger landscaping and agricultural use and are usually four-wheel drive.
A backhoe loader is a type of tractor that can be used in construction work. It is a variation of the basic farm tractor, but it has a bucket loader assembly in the front, and a backhoe in the back. Variations on this type of tractor would include many types of engineering tractors that can be fitted with drilling equipment, ripper, or hoe.
Another type of tractor is one that has tracks instead of wheel, like a bulldozer. They have a track or tracks on either side of the cab and are very strong. They are mainly used for pushing or dragging heavy materials or objects. This concept is even used by NASA, as they use a track-style tractor with four giant tracks to move booster rockets and space shuttle from their hangars to the launch pad.
A road tractor hauls equipment over the road, and is also called a semi or tractor-trailer. They are heavy duty tractors with large engines, and in England they are called articulated cab tractors. They use a fifth wheel coupling to attach themselves to trailers to haul cargo. Without these types of tractors, much of our food supply and other consumer goods would not be able to move around the country.