The Tough International Harvester Cub Cadet Compact Garden Tractor
(Page 4 of 7)
Wide frames and more
After nearly a decade of narrow-frame machines, IH relied entirely on a wide-front design after 1971. "Once the fender change was made on the 73-147 line, the frame change was not difficult," Harold explains about the genesis of the wide-frame Cub Cadets. "The new, formed frame had more space and it also made the tractor look beefier."
The sixth line of Cub Cadet tractors was introduced in late 1971, and included models 86, 108, 109, 128, 129, 149 and 169. The tractors sported new hoods, grilles, instrument panels and many safety and convenience updates. Of course, the frame was wider up front to accommodate larger engines. For the first time the grille casting was painted white, and the grille was constructed of black plastic.
The gear-driven models – 86, 108, and 128 – used the Farmall Cub's transmission. The other models were hydrostatic, including the Model 169, which was the first with a 16-hp engine. All models used the original Cub Cadet's cast iron rear end and differential. The hydrostatic pumps on the two highest horsepower Cub Cadets were fitted with auxiliary ports to serve the machine’s lifting and remote hydraulic needs.
In the fall of 1974, IH introduced a new series called the Quietline. These wide-frame Cub Cadets had a new numbering scheme, rubber isolation of the engine from the frame and an enclosed engine compartment. Initially, the Quietline Series included three gear-driven units in 8-, 10- and 12-hp called the 800, 1000 and 1200, respectively. Cub Cadet Model 1250, Model 1450 and Model 1650 were the 12-, 14- and 16-hp hydrostatic models. All three still used Kohler engines. In order to remain competitive in the lower price range, IH introduced the Model 1100.
The Model 1100 was a significant deviation from the rest of the wide-frame Cub Cadets. IH dropped the Farmall Cub transaxle, opting for a less expensive four-speed Peerless brand lawn tractor transmission, which was standard for most competing models. The Model 1100 was powered by an 11-hp Briggs & Stratton engine. To further cut costs, engine compartment side panels weren't included ... which meant that it wasn’t a true Quietline, because the side panels were the main noise-abating component of the Quietline Series.
Although it wasn't planned, the 1977 design was based on what would become the last of the IH Cub Cadet lines scheduled for release two years later.
Finest of the fleet
In 1979 – Cub Cadet's most profitable year – IH again introduced a significantly redesigned line of Cub Cadets. Styling included an all-enclosed engine compartment. However, the tractors were updated with safety and comfort changes, enhanced hydraulics and many more engine sizes and brands. After 19 years of yellow and white paint, IH painted the new Cub Cadets red and again changed the numbering scheme.
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