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Why are trucks called Tractors?

Discussion in 'Off the Topic Forum' started by McCulloch1-52, May 12, 2012.

  1. McCulloch1-52

    McCulloch1-52 AboristSite Guru

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    I don't get it Is because they can pull trailers so can pickups, Somebody started to talk about Peterbilt Tractors I was like they don't Tractors, like John deere or IH Case then I was watching a video how to how to hook up a trailer they said set the parking on the tractors and it went on. A truck hauling two or more trailers are called Road Trains makes more sense then calling them tractors. most of the people would think different if I started to talk about IH tractors but I am talking Semi trucks than they change their name to Navistar International, Why are they called tractors.
     
  2. wyk

    wyk WYK

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  3. Dalmatian90

    Dalmatian90 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    A truck is a wheeled vehicle for moving objects.

    Notice there's no mention of a motor.

    Thus the term "hand truck."

    Tractor is short for Traction Engine.

    I seem to recall what we now usually refer to as "running gear" (wheels, axles, and frame) was called the "truck" during the horse-drawn era. Upon which you'd place the proper type of body for the load you were carrying, into which you'd place the load.

    Of course I can't find a Google cite for that and don't feel like digging through my books right now. If you could find a 1800s era catalog someone has scanned and put online, that would probably provide the answer.
     
  4. boutselis

    boutselis Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I think the reason is in the MAIN use of the machine in question.

    While trucks can pull a trailer it is not their main function (though many of us use them that way) The main function of a truck is personal transport or bed load transport.

    In a Mck or peterbilt the main purpose is to pull some other trailer. They are not used to transport people or a small load in the bed, they are used to pull a box or a tank that holds its contents.

    Thats why they are often called tractor trailers.
     
  5. McCulloch1-52

    McCulloch1-52 AboristSite Guru

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    So that means my Dodge Ram 150 is now a Pickup Tractor because it can pull trailers.
     
  6. promac850

    promac850 formerly promac610

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    Just call them a lorry. Problem solved. It's still used in Europe to describe a tractor trailer or a box truck
     
  7. boutselis

    boutselis Addicted to ArboristSite

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    No. Its main function is still for passengers. A honda civic can pull a trailer also but it has no open bed so it isnt a truck or a tractor either.

    a tractor has to be primarily used for pulling other equipment or a load.

    unless its a lawn tractor which is a tractor because its main use is not to transport a person but to move a blade deck. Its main objective is to move something else other than the operator.
     
  8. chowdozer

    chowdozer Addicted to ArboristSite

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    So a truck can be a tractor, but a tractor can't be a truck.
    A tractor can drive down the freeway, unless it's not a truck. So a tractor that's not a truck should stay on local roads.
    A tractor can't be confused with something used to pull a load when it's on rails though.
    Then it's a locomotive. Unless it's yard engine, then it's not really a locomotive. A yard engine can't be a yard tractor, because we already have those.
    But a yard tractor is different than a lawn tractor.
    We all know the difference between a lawn and a yard.
     
  9. turnkey4099

    turnkey4099 Tree Freak

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    I agree...or...ummm...I think I do...

    Harry K
     
  10. o8f150

    o8f150 Tree Freak

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    now i am freaking confused after reading these replies
     
  11. Guido Salvage

    Guido Salvage Supreme Saw Whoreder

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    Trucks also refer to the wheel mechanisms on rail cars or skateboards. The running gear under hit and miss engines is also known as a truck.

    Or a tractor could almost be a car....

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  12. DANOAM

    DANOAM Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I got into a friendly argument with my buddy's dad on a camping trip when I called my blazer a truck. He said it wasn't because it didn't have a bed. I towed a trailer full of firewood and beer behind me so I guess that made my blazer a tractor.

    Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk 2
     
  13. boutselis

    boutselis Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I'd say thats all correct:msp_tongue:
     
  14. boutselis

    boutselis Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Nope. It was just a passenger vehicle pulling a trailer full of good stuff.
     
  15. boutselis

    boutselis Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Well that one in the picture has got me stumped but its pretty damn cool looking.
     
  16. wyk

    wyk WYK

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    Now you're just be facetious.
     
  17. McCulloch1-52

    McCulloch1-52 AboristSite Guru

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    There are pickups that are made for hauling thats what the box is for not for people. some pickups can haul 2 or 3 people like semi's and some pickups have fifth wheels , not all pickups are for home use.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2012
  18. Dalmatian90

    Dalmatian90 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Minneapolis Moline UDLX.

    By the way, if your grandma has one sitting under a sheet in the barn...the last one to go to auction sold for $78,000.

    Two others hold the #2 ($100,000) and #1 ($155,000) spots on antique tractor auctions.
     
  19. Marco

    Marco Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I was thinking, but you beat me to it.
     
  20. Marco

    Marco Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Sucks to have to take the fender off to do belt work.
     

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