Tractor Axle Testing Fixture

John Deere has been a leading innovator of farm equipment since 1837. Today, instead of perfecting black smith techniques for plows, they constantly improve their designs as well as their testing techniques. Recently, John Deere managers decided to look into internalizing and customize a current external procedures. We were asked to help in this decision by providing a design for a test fixture according to their desired testing parameters, which were to simulate the transverse loads of a tractor axle in operation. The design we need to produce was to apply various loads to an axle as if it were experiencing weight on level or inclines, such as a tractor driving across a hillside.

As the image shows, the final test fixture design is adjustable for angles, applies various loads via hydraulic pressure control, and can be used for various axles. One of the greatest challenges of the test design was designing for a large variety of shapes and sizes of tractor axles. The design we settled on is adjustable for each of the axles specified, and other adapters can be designed for future axle designs. One other major challenge of this design was the verification. Since we could not build and test our design on campus due to its size and other safety factors, we proved our concept with a scaled prototype setup shown below.

With the multiple settings available, John Deere can perform the custom tests they desire with complete confidence and control of the parameters. As mentioned before, they can also easily test other axles as designs evolve by simply manufacturing height and flange adapters.

School Year (term): 
John Deere: Drivetrain PV & V
Team Name: 
David Barker
Team Members: 
Larsen Webb, Jeff Winegar, Tanner Monson, Andrew McMullin, Matthew Merrill

Brigham Young University - Provo | Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
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