from the first time I saw an ad for them in Popular Science as a young teen more years ago than I like to think about, I have lusted after a mini dozer. I got a set of plans from a Magnatrac from Struck, but didn't have the means to buy a Peerless transmission nor a source for the track chain.
A few years ago, before they relaunched the MiniDozer, RS1000, and RS 196, Struck had PDFs of the drawings for the early MD models on their website. At that time, they obviously considered the design obsolete and downloaded copies would do them little commercial harm. I downloaded and saved a copy of the plans for the MD1200/1600. I did make a modified copy of the MDs, but that would be another lengthy thread in it's own right.....
Anyway, as this story goes, when Struck relaunched the design as the RS1000/RS196K, they took the PDF plans off their website. After some success with the slightly improved RS1000, which sold as fully assembled and tested units, they saw a demand for a return to Kit dozers and launched the RS196K kits dozers. The RS196 comes as a set of unpainted parts, but includes most of the improvements of the RS line with a smaller engine and manual attachments.
The basic principle is the buyer can paint and assemble the dozer and save some $. The other thing that caught my attention was that they marketed it as an ideal parent/child construction project. Save $ on a new toy and have an opportunity to pass along some mechanical skills to the kids? It was a relatively easy sell to the Chief Finance Officer, so I ordered the kit.
The biggest differences between the RS196 and the older MDs is the conversion from the serpentine hex belt running the counter shafts to a +/- HD 40 chain and the extra height from placing the engine (now reversed) on a +/- 4" pedestal. The RS1000 has these features as well as some beefed up transmission and engine stuff as well as having hydraulics for attachments.
More to come later..... including pictures IF I can figure out the upload routine and maybe even video, again IF I can reduce the file size to something manageable and get them uploaded.
Edited by camdigger, May 04, 2015 - 07:23 AM.