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This is all hypothetical, I don't have any plans to change, BUT.....

I have a 2520 with 23x8.5-12 front and 14x17.5 rear R4 tires. The R4 is the only tire I see that is made for the 17.5 wheel. If I wanted to switch to an ag-style bar tread tire (front and rear), like the Carlisle Farm Specialist, what sizes would I need to keep a similar rolling diameter and proper front-to-back diameter ratio (for the 4WD) as the R4's I have? I understand it would mean changing the rear wheel as well as the tire, and possibly the front, too.
 

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Some time back a not-so-regular poster here posted the ratios and the math to do what you are talking about. I guess I should have bookmarked it as I will never find it again.

But you are correct in that you would have to change out the wheels both front and back.

I would only consider something like this if the newer HDAP radials were available for our tractors. I would love to have them in place of my R4’s.

The new 2032/2038 is available with them - that’s where I saw them.

I don’t think I have ever seen a 2520/2720 with R1’s.
 

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This is all hypothetical, I don't have any plans to change, BUT.....

I have a 2520 with 23x8.5-12 front and 14x17.5 rear R4 tires. The R4 is the only tire I see that is made for the 17.5 wheel. If I wanted to switch to an ag-style bar tread tire (front and rear), like the Carlisle Farm Specialist, what sizes would I need to keep a similar rolling diameter and proper front-to-back diameter ratio (for the 4WD) as the R4's I have? I understand it would mean changing the rear wheel as well as the tire, and possibly the front, too.
Contact Miller Tire, they are one of the site vendors, they'll set you straight on what your options are.
 

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Your 23x8.5x12 fronts have a rolling circumference of 68.9".
The 14x17.5 rears have a rolling circumference of 109.5"

That breaks down to a ratio of ~1.6. (1.589 if you want to get picky). So that's the ratio you'd want to maintain. You'd have to look at the rolling circumference of tires you'd want to buy and find something that works out correctly.

I've seen several people mention looking for R-1 tires for the older 2-series but have never seen anyone post info about finding rims/wheels that will work.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
From what I've found, swapping the rear wheels wouldn't be a big deal; the 2520, 2720, 3032, and 3038 are all 6-lug with the same bolt pattern. A 24" wheel from a 3-series would fit the 2-series, and either the radials coaltrain speaks of would fit, or a 11.2-24 R1.

The problem is the front wheels, which are 4-lug on the 2520 and 2720, but 6 lug on the 3-series. I suppose a thin adapter (thin so as not to spread the front track much) could solve that, but I guess they'd have to be custom-made. Then any of the offerings in a 14" wheel, like the 3's use, would be possible and maintain the front-to-rear drive ratio.

It's all academic, really, but it seems a shame that the older 2-series are locked in to either a turf tire (which also takes different wheels) or an R4. What got me to thinking about this was plowing and tilling my garden. with the 2520 and R4's. There was noticeably more wheel slip than I had with my X748, which had R1 Trupower tires and about 600 pounds less weight. I could get by in 2WD most of the time with the X7 using the tiller, but found myself going to 4WD almost immediately with the 2520. I also didn't have much of an issue with ripping up the lawn when mowing and having the R1's, but I suppose that extra 600 or so pounds might change that if I went to R1's on the larger tractor.

oh, well, just a thought. I'm otherwise happy with the R4's, they're round, hold air, have lots of tread, and best of all, are PAID FOR.
 

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From what I've found, swapping the rear wheels wouldn't be a big deal; the 2520, 2720, 3032, and 3038 are all 6-lug with the same bolt pattern. A 24" wheel from a 3-series would fit the 2-series, and either the radials coaltrain speaks of would fit, or a 11.2-24 R1.

The problem is the front wheels, which are 4-lug on the 2520 and 2720, but 6 lug on the 3-series. I suppose a thin adapter (thin so as not to spread the front track much) could solve that, but I guess they'd have to be custom-made. Then any of the offerings in a 14" wheel, like the 3's use, would be possible and maintain the front-to-rear drive ratio.

It's all academic, really, but it seems a shame that the older 2-series are locked in to either a turf tire (which also takes different wheels) or an R4. What got me to thinking about this was plowing and tilling my garden. with the 2520 and R4's. There was noticeably more wheel slip than I had with my X748, which had R1 Trupower tires and about 600 pounds less weight. I could get by in 2WD most of the time with the X7 using the tiller, but found myself going to 4WD almost immediately with the 2520. I also didn't have much of an issue with ripping up the lawn when mowing and having the R1's, but I suppose that extra 600 or so pounds might change that if I went to R1's on the larger tractor.

oh, well, just a thought. I'm otherwise happy with the R4's, they're round, hold air, have lots of tread, and best of all, are PAID FOR.
You aren't the first to lament the lack of tire options and you probably won't be the last.

I'm not sure how much you've looked but even with the R3 and R4 offerings, there isn't much to choose from. If you want R3's, the only company that makes a 36x14.00-15 R3 tire is Carlisle and they only offer it in the Multi Trac CS tread pattern. There are a handful of choices for R4s to fit but still, not very many.
 
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