Caterpillar Sixty
Holt Caterpillar.JPG
The Caterpillar Sixty of J.C. Balls & Sons on display at the SED show
Model history
Model introduced 1925
Model discontinued 1931
Model status Discontinued
No. produced 13,516
Preceded by Holt 60
Engine Specification
Fuel type Gasoline (Petrol)
Power hp 65
Power kW 48
No. of Cylinders 4
Cooling system Water
Transmission Details
Transmission type Unknown
Drive tracked
General Data
Linkage Category NA
Tyre Sizes (std/options)
Rear Tracks
Tractor Dimensions
Width (inches/meters) 73 inch gauge
Cab Details
Type of Cab Canopy
Other info
Factories Peoria, Illinois, USA
San Leandro, California, USA
Plow rating
Web site
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The Caterpillar Sixty Horsepower tractor crawler of 1919 became the world's first successful bulldozer. Initially developed by the C.L.Best Company of California, USA, it was one of the models carried over when they merged in 1925 with the Holt Company to form the company that would become known as Caterpillar.

History[edit | edit source]

Holt[edit | edit source]

The earlier designs from Benjamin Holt's company had a tricycle-type crawler in that it had rear drive tracks and a forward steering wheel. Holt tractors had become successful in West coast logging and farming industries. They used technology similar to that which William Foster & Co. of England used to build the Mark I tanks for the British Army in the First World War. Holt bought the patents to tracks from Richard Hornsby & Sons of England in 1914.[1] The design of Chain-tracks was patented by Hornsby's chief engineer David Roberts in 1904. The original Hornsby tractor has been found in Canada.[2] Benjamin Holt died in 1920.

Best[edit | edit source]

The Best Manufacturing Company (sometimes known as the Daniel Best Company) of San Leandro, California was a manufacturer of farm machinery, now probably best known for its steam tractors. The company was formed in 1871 by Daniel Best. The company's initial products were a portable grain cleaner and steam tractors. The company was acquired by the Holt Manufacturing Company in 1908 after a legal battle. C.L. Best, the son of the founder, then formed his own rival company: the C. L. Best Gas Traction Company, which built gasoline-powered tractors. This new Best company acquired the rights to manufacture the "Lombard Log Hauler," an early tracked crawler, and the company began producing "tracklayer" tractors.

The crawler tractor had arrived. Holt and Best continued to build them into the early 1920s when the two companies merged in 1925 to form Caterpillar Tractor Company; the Caterpillar name was applied to Holt's earlier designs.

The Sixty[edit | edit source]

Early Caterpillar logo

The Caterpillar Sixty was famous for its overhanging radiator, individually mounted cylinders, lever controls, and open clutch. Also, the straight exhaust, rough seat, and exposed fuel tank made the Sixty a work machine. It was to rival the Holt 10 Ton model.

The Sixty was a 72-inch (1.8 m) Gauge machine and weighed 20,500 lb (9,300 kg), with a 65 hp (48 kW) 4-cylinder engine. By 1931 when production ended, 13,516 had been built at Peoria, Illinois, USA and 5,432 at San Leandro, California, USA. They were sold as a Logger Cruiser.[3]

Initially, the crawlers were used to pull farm equipment and road scrapers. They did not have a blade on the front. Later, cable lift blades were rigged up, so that the crawlers could be used as a bulldozer.

Diesel Conversion[edit | edit source]

Atlas Imperial Diesel Engine in a Caterpillar Sixty tractor

The Sixty was converted to Diesel by industrialist H. Kaiser who had several fitted with Atlas Imperial Diesel Engine Co. diesel engines.

Caterpillar then started experimenting with diesel engines for other models.

Preservation[edit | edit source]

Several examples are in preservation in the UK and around the world.

Template:PML Caterpillar Sixty

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  • SNL G022 army parts cat.
  1. Wikipedia:Richard_Hornsby _&_Sons
  2. Hornsby Steam Crawler | Main / Home Page
  3. Caterpillar Pocket guide, Icongrafix, ISBN 1-58388-022-4

External links[edit | edit source]

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