Good afternoon. I was wondering if there are any good ideas for a receiver hitch for a JD 318. Would like to pull some smaler trailers around the yard and would like to build a hitch. Nothing fancy but something I won't break the tractor with.
Some guys have been known to just mount a ball to the rear hitch plate and call it a day.
I cant say thats a good idea, because I dont think it is. That is rated to pull, not for a weight load pushing down. Whats too much? No idea.
It would be pretty bad to find out since thats bolted directly to the axle housing, and a crack would be VERY bad news.
The housing itself is pretty stout, and if you could make something that also bolted to the rear of the housing, I think youd be fine.
Heck, if the trailer doesnt weigh much, youd probably be fine mounting the ball and just using that. I just would make sure you didnt have a lot of tongue weight.
Ive seen lots of little MTD type riders move trailers in a similar way, and they arent anywhere near as strong.
3-point would be best, but if you dont have one, its a costly addition just to move a trailer once in a while.
Ive got one on my 3-point that I use fairly regularly, but have other uses for the 3-point too.
Be careful where you mount any hitch adapter. The under axle mounts for the 3 point combined with the rock-shaft support for the top link of the 3 point and the side frame mounts provide the most secure attachment -- this is why the load lifter and combination hitches for these tractors are popular accessories. Here is one on my x495, but others are made for the 318 and similar tractors.
Whatever you do, don't rely on the simple draw bar mount of the factory rear plate due to the weight carrying limitations noted above, and don't add any tension/pulling forces to the threaded bosses of the transmission housing as it is just an alloy casting and not strong in that direction -- see below: