I’ve been wanting to add a step for my 1025R. That big step up a full 20 inches is getting harder, especially during a tractor project where I might get up and down dozens of times. There have been a lot of creative solutions offered on GTT. Many posters have noted that easy removability is important, especially for installing the mowing deck. I started to duplicate the creative step that spferdil posted and then I realized it wouldn’t work for me. I’ve never hit my garage door or its header with my ROPs. The only reason I haven’t joined this prestigious club is that I have about 2 inches of clearance. If this was not the case, I’d be a multiple-incident member of the club. So I could imagine getting up on the tractor to drive over the MMM, using the step to get up there even, and completely forgetting to remove it before the drive-over. Then there would be a mangled mess of MMM and step and I’d spend maybe hours with a hacksaw trying to get everything free again.
So I decided that my step had to be there when I needed it, but otherwise get the heck out of the way without my needing to intervene. When the MMM is not installed, the step will come down to roughly the half-way position between the operator’s platform and the ground when a foot is placed on it. The step normally sits at a level that will not interfere with installing the MMM and it will not contact the MMM when it is in the fully raised (lock) position. With the MMM installed, the pin on the step receiver can be moved to the upper position. In this case, the step can be used to get on or off the tractor, but it will only come down about 1.5 inches above the halfway point, avoiding contact with the MMM if it is lowered to the mowing position. (I have my mowing height set to 3.5 inches.) I’m pretty good about lowering my implements before leaving the tractor, and not having the MMM lowered makes it harder to disembark. Just in case I forget, I’ll be adding a rubber bumper to the bottom of the step or to the top of the MMM. I’ll do this the next time I have the MMM on the tractor so that I can position it accurately. The rubber bumper will probably not be on the MMM since the area of potential contact is the drive-over area on the left side. I don’t want the bumper destroyed by the tractor tire during MMM installation.
This step requires a FEL pedestal with a backhoe frame bracket on it. While it’s another great reason to get a backhoe, you could just order the frame bracket parts from JD parts and skip the backhoe.
In the course of this project, I gained even more respect for people who design things for tractors. There are a lot of scenarios to consider, and implements and accessories that move add to the complexity. Any change requires reevaluation of all safety issues.
I’ll add posts to this thread with build and testing details at a later time.