Cheap auto steer for tractor is a reality in 2023! No longer do you need to pay tens of thousands to the greedy dealers for something that shouldn’t be that expensive anyway. My agriculture GPS guidance systems are fully compatible with this cheap auto steer setup. However, it requires some work sourcing, and assembling the parts. It’s a project, but it’s well worth it considering the savings you can achieve. Please contact me to discuss, or continue reading below! What the grand total cost for a guidance display plus all the auto steer components, and a sub inch accurate RTK kit with radio link and base station? Well, it should be under ~$5000 all in, and no subscriptions of any kind!
What parts are involved? The big picture of cheap auto steer
The guidance part of the GPS system. I supply this, ready for use:
- (1) windows-based device, in my case a Toughbook tablet or laptop, (2) loaded with GPS guidance software, and (3) a high quality GPS antenna or even an RTK kit. I supply Toughbooks with farming GPS guidance software which is fully compatible with this auto steer build. Auto steer works great with RTK, since it can take advantage of the accuracy. Consider this guidance package to run the auto steer, which is the most popular I supply for this purpose: Ultimate+ RTK from $2525.
Without the below components this is a guidance only system ready for auto steer, and can be used as such! You can order that from me.
The actual auto steer components. I do not supply the auto steer components, but I can point you in the right direction on where to acquire them. This should cost under $1000, give or take, even if you buy some pre-assembled components!
- The interface box based on an Arduino with sensors, motor controllers, and more. The costs here are a few hundred dollars.
- What actually turns the wheel. This can be steering wheel motor on a bracket, or a hydraulic valve. Both of these are supported, and have their pros and cons. The costs here are from zero if you have a hydraulic valve up to a thousand or so.
For a full breakdown on parts and component sources, please check this page, and the links from there. There are a lot of resources listed on the other page, whereas this page serves as a general overview.
Cheap auto steer for tractor: wheel motor vs hydraulic valve
Both a steering wheel motor and a hydraulic valve can steer the tractor. If your tractor has a hydraulic valve already installed, it’s a no brainer. If you do not, then going the steering wheel motor route is usually cheaper and easier. Generally, a hydraulic valve setup is more out of the way and less intrusive in the cab. It’s a personal decision which depends on your tractor, what each option will cost you, and how much time you want to spend on implementing it.
Cheap auto steer for tractor: old tractor refit
This is totally fine, and in many cases even easier than trying to do it on a newer tractor. Any model tractor can be made to work. Here’s an example:
Video demo of cheap auto steer for tractor w/ DIY wheel motor
Auto steer ready GPS guidance systems w/ RTK
- $2525-2800 Ultimate+ RTK have crazy bright displays and enough processing power for auto-steer.
- $3075-3360 Everything 30 RTK range upgrade to 50 km (31 mi) and even more options.
Why get a an affordable farming GPS system from me?
My GPS guidance systems are compatible with with all tractor brands, such as: John Deere, Case IH, Massey Ferguson, New Holland, Fendt Mahindra, Deutz-Fahr, Kubota, Valtra, Claas, International, and others. Please contact me with any questions! All of the units below can’t beat the value I offer. They can’t beat the fact that there’s no subscription. Their functionality is similar. It’s a clear win, from a value perspective! EZ-Guide 250 | Topcon X14 | Agricision onTrak | Patchwork BlackBox Air | Sixty-5 Grass-Guide | FarmerGPS | Ag Leader Compass | Teejet Matrix 430 | Raven Cruizer | CenterLine 220 | John Deere | Trimble CFX-750 | FieldBee.