A few years ago, R. Bruce McDonald figured it was time to do something unique with his 1966 Cub Cadet. The obvious solution was of course to remove the stock 12 HP Kohler engine and replace it with a Garrett GTP 30-67 gas turbine.
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R. Bruce McDannald is not new to tinkering with things. 60 years ago, when he was 12 years old he built a Go-Cart with an old cast-iron, hand-crank Briggs & Stratton motor. For his latest project, Bruce adapted the guts of a large generator to take 8,000 RPM off the turbine, and with the help of a multi-groove belt, reduced the RPM down to 3,600 on the input side of his original hydrostat drive. He had to make or design many parts including his custom exhaust. The project took him about 150 hours over three years.
After spending $4,000 on the engine and another $4,000 on other parts, it still has the same performance it did when he started. But having a gas turbine in your tractor that runs at 112 dB? Well, for the garage tinkerer, that is priceless.
Mr. McDonald will not be cutting grass with his baby but will take it to the Tractor Museum in Vista, CA and other "outdoor" shows. Listen for that turbine screaming.
Staff photographer John B. Carnett is no stranger to superfluous turbine projects. Check out more on his own insane jet-powered four-wheeler mod here.
Dude 8 grand and it can't do 0-60 in under 4 seconds get the ***** out of here. He must not of watch the handy man Tim Taylor much this bad boy would be pwning SS's by now
What a foolish waste of $8,000.
He's probably retired at 72, and what else do you do when you're retired other than spend your money on things you enjoy doing? Derp.
My turbine powered boat:
WHAT A DUMBASS!
Gimmy and gizmowiz,
You'd have to know my neighbor Bruce to understand this. First of all he is not retired, at 72 he works many more than 40 hours a week at his pump business and is VERY Generous with both his time and his resources. He has rebuilt a couple of tractors and quads and so many other things that the guy is a genius at figuring out how to do things mechanical.
He could be deep in a pump house cavern and still answers his phone with a cheery voice and is willing to patiently answer any questions. He has solved complex geothermal problems even when the vendor was stumped as to how to heat/cool his home. I wish we had a TOWNFULL of people like Bruce!
I think that this is really cool. A pat on the back and an "ataboy" to Mr. McDonald! Gizmowiz and Neuenkir, if you are not excited by this kind stuff, then why are you wasting your time reading Popular Science?
lol rest of the world is trying to reduce consumption meanwhile the old bats on the way out say screw it I am going to use the fastest burning engine... assuming this jet like the f-15/16 JFS uses 70 gallons per hour.
Looking at the spec sheets and basic design that is about the same machine. Thanks for adding to the large displacement of resources we can't recover.
And to those saying anything about us complainers of something like this well if you get published for doing something wasteful your asking for it. After all I like making things go boom but you don't see me doing it. I left it in the military where it belonged.
O another side note glad he isn't my neighbor or I would show him how turkey testing is done.
f*ck YES! WOO! 3 2 1 time for a ride! >=) crazy but an awesome idea!
waste of money though yeah, not coo man -,,,,-
Awesome Tractor, it reminds me of Tim Allen's on the TV show Home Improvement, but yours in on steroids with a turbine! Nice work.