First Things

| October/November 1995

P.O. Box 178, Thompson, Connecticut 06277

It's called the Lay-Trac G-2 tractor, and is probably the world's smallest true production bulldozer. This marvel of engineering was briefly produced back in the 1950s by a small company located in Seattle, Washington. Width at the tracks is a scant 30', and the overall length without attachments is only 48'! With a front push blade and a rear cultivator bar, this little unit does a fine job emulating its generic big brothers like the Caterpillar D-8.

The subject of this article was obtained in inoperable condition, needing a lot of tender loving care. This Lay-Trac Mini-Bull-dozer is now the proud possession of one Richard Rawson of Thompson, Connecticut, and has been lovingly restored to pristine condition.

Having full machine shop facilities at his disposal, 'Dick' Rawson effected some minor improvements to the transmission mounts. Other than this, the unit is now in factory-new original condition.

Here is the mechanical 'skinny' on the little G-2. A 9 HP, air cooled, Clinton gas engine supplies the power. The engine is ingeniously mounted on a spring-loaded pivoting platform that also serves as the main clutch. The transmission is a Borg-Warner T-92 model with three speeds forward and one reverse. (This is the very same model that was used in the Crossly car of the same vintage.)

Steering is accomplished via a very hefty, well engineered set of cone clutches and band brakes. When the steering levers are all the way forward, the clutch is engaged; pull back on either lever and you activate the individual band brakes. The carriage consists of two solid cast idlers and two solid cast steel sprockets. No idler rolls are used due to the short distance between the idler wheels and the sprockets. The tracks are amazingly heavy duty in construction; in fact, the pads and the links are cast as one solid unit. This feature, as well as so many other high quality cast parts, leads me to believe the Lay-Trac people had their own foundry capabilities.