Tractor & Construction Plant Wiki
Caterpillar 983 Crawler Loader
Cat 983 working at EMwd 2011 - IMG 0534.JPG
Cat 983 in action at the East Midlands Vintage Working Weekend 2011
Model history
Model introduced 1969
Model discontinued 1970
Model status Discontinued
Engine Specification
Engine make Caterpillar
Engine model D343
Fuel type Diesel
Power hp 275
No. of Cylinders 6
Cooling system Water
Transmission Details
Transmission type Unknown
Drive tracked
Linkage Category Unknown
Other info
Factories USA
Plow rating Unknown
Web site
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The Caterpillar 983 crawler loader was introduced in 1969. It was manufactured by Caterpillar Inc. in the USA only.


The 983 has a six-cylinder Caterpillar D343 engine fitted with a Turbocharger, producing 275 hp (205 kW) (FWHP). It has a three-speed powershift transmission. It comes standard with oil cooled brakes and clutches, pedal steer, electric start, hydraulic track adjusters, and a 22-inch (56-cm) double Grouser Shoes track.

The Cat 983 was given a 38K serial number prefix.


In 1970 Caterpillar added an automatic bucket positioner, beginning with 38K00472. Laminated lift arms were also added, beginning with 38K00530.

In 1971 Cat added a two-piece master link, beginning with 38K00666.

In 1972 the wheel base was lengthened, a solid section roller frame was added, and a steel final drive case was made standard, beginning with 38K00684. A rollover protection system (ROPS) and sealed loader linkage was added, beginning with 38K00765.

In 1974 Cat added a sealed and lubricated track (SALT), beginning with 38K01080.

In 1975 the ROPS canopy was made standard, beginning with 38K01378.

Production of 983 ended in 1978; it was replaced by the Caterpillar 983B.

Based on data from the sales database of Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, it is estimated that more than 1,600 Caterpillar 983 crawler loaders have been produced.

5 Tine ripper on a Caterpillar 983 traxcavator loader

Highest Serial #
38K 01648
Total = 1,648


Caterpillar 983 crawler loader fitted with ripper attachment, seen at Russell Saywell Open Day in 2012

This very large machine was not very common in the UK with most of the examples that originally worked here exported.

Only 2 examples are believed to be in the UK now.

  • The S.E. Davis & Son collection has one which has apeared at a number of events and has been demonstrated working at Great Dorset Steam Fair and at the East Midlands Vintage Working Weekend were it was filmed in action by ? productions for there vintage machines working series of DVDs.
  • The Russell Saywell collection of Caterpillar tractors also has a restored example of one, which was seen in action at the 2012 Russell Saywell Open Day. This machine is fitted with a single shank ripper attachment.

See also

References / sources

External links

This page includes content from RitchieWiki