A Comprehensive Guide on the Solis S26 Shuttle XL Compact Tractor

S26 Shuttle
Solis Tractors


The Solis S26 Shuttle XL compact tractor is the middle of the range 26hp compact tractor made by Solis. It is designed as a small holding workhorse, especially when equipped with its 4-1 loader and a multitude of attachments. It boasts the trusted Solis 5 year warranty and a easy to operate shuttle transmission. In this guide, we will delve into harnessing the full potential of your new Solis S26 Shuttle XL, with a focus on its key attributes. These include the simple to use shuttle transmission, the rear hydraulics, the three-point linkage and more.

If your finding yourself asking the question, How do I use my Solis 26? then this guide is for you.


Safety and Pre-Operation Checklist for Your Solis S26 Shuttle XL Compact Tractor

When it comes to operating the Solis S26 Shuttle XL Compact Tractor, your safety is paramount. Ensuring a secure working environment involves adhering to PPE (personal protective equipment) recommendations and consistently fastening your seatbelt while using the equipment. With safety as our top concern, let’s now delve into the pre-operation checklist that should be completed before you embark on any tasks with your Solis S26 Shuttle XL Compact Tractor. This essential checklist not only bolsters safety measures but also guarantees the seamless operation of your Solis S26 Compact Tractor.

  1. Engine Oil Check: Begin by checking the engine oil level. Locate the dipstick on the right-hand side beneath the bonnet, adjacent to the engine oil filter. Make sure the machine is parked on a flat, level surface, then remove the dipstick. Confirm that the oil level falls within the designated range between the two lines on the dipstick.
  2. Visual Engine Check: While inspecting the engine compartment of your Solis S26, visually examine its components. Search for any visible damage or indications of leaks. Also, ensure that the radiator screen is free of debris. At the front of the engine, switch the isolator to the ON position if it’s not already there, and securely close the bonnet.
  3. Visual Machine Check: As you walk around the machine, meticulously inspect various components from the front to the rear, including the Front Axle, bonnet, and panels. Check for any apparent leaks or damages to the machine.
  4. Grease the Machine: Maintaining proper lubrication is essential for the tractor’s peak performance. It’s advisable to grease the machine approximately every 10 hours of operation or after extended periods of inactivity. For specific grease point locations, consult your operator’s manual.

By completing this pre-operation checklist, you’ll be well-prepared to carry out your tasks using the Solis S26 Compact tractor with confidence, ensuring not only your safety but also the machine’s optimal performance.


Lets get started!

Now that we’ve covered the essential pre-operation checks for your Solis S26 Shuttle XL, it’s time to get ready for the machine’s operation. Starting the Solis S26 Shuttle XL involves a sequence of crucial steps that must be followed in the correct order:

  1. Engage the Park Brake: Begin by engaging the tractor’s park brake if you haven’t already. Simply lift the park brake lever located between your legs.
  2. Place the Range Lever in Neutral: On the left-hand side of the operator’s station, you’ll find the range lever, marked with a distinctive orange handle. Ensure it’s in the neutral position, which is located in the middle.
  3. Place the Transmission Lever in Neutral: If the main transmission lever, situated on the right-hand side of the operator’s station with an orange handle, isn’t already in neutral, move it to the neutral position.
  4. Place the forward reverse lever in neutral: The forward reverse lever is the lever positioned to the Left hand side of the seat, place this in the Middle “N” Position.
  5. Place the PTO Selector in Neutral: Locate the PTO selector on the lower left-hand side of the footwell, identified by a yellow handle. Make sure it’s in the neutral position.
  6. Depress the Clutch Pedal: With your left foot, fully depress the clutch pedal.
  7. Heat Up the Glow Plugs: Turn the ignition switch one click to the right to activate the glow plugs. The heating duration depends on the outside ambient temperature, ranging from 3 seconds to 20 seconds.
  8. Bring It to Life: Continue turning the key further to the right and listen as the Mitsubishi 3-cylinder engine springs to life with a reassuring purr.

Congratulations! You’re now in a poised position to operate your Solis S26 Shuttle. These steps ensure a smooth and safe start for your machine, enabling you to operate it effectively and with confidence.


Its time to drive!

You have now successfully completed the pre-op checklist and the start procedure to get your new Solis S26 Shuttle XL started. Now the engine is running its time to take your first voyage in the Solis. The Solis S26 Shuttle XL features a 9 forward, 9 reverse shuttle transmission with a directional forward reverse control lever. To begin your first drive, follow the below procedure

  1. Disengage the park brake: Firstly, Place your Right foot firmly on the brake pedal and then using the park brake lever located between your legs pull the locking collar and lower the park brake lever towards the foot well
  2. Engage the Clutch: Fully depress the clutch lever to the floor using your Left Foot.
  3. Engage “A” Range: By using the range lever on the Left Hand side of the operator station, select the “A” Range, this is the slowest range.
  4. Engage First Gear: By using the main transmission lever on the Right hand Side of the operator station engage the First Gear.
  5. Engage the Forward Reverse Lever: By using the forward reverse lever on the left hand side of the operator station engage it into the Forward Position.
  6. Begin your drive; Slowly release the clutch and you will feel the machine moving forward.

Congratulations, you are now driving your new Solis S26 Shuttle XL.


Changing Gears. 

Your brand-new Solis S26 Shuttle XL Compact Tractor is equipped with a shuttle transmission, which means you’ll need to change gears as you operate it. Shifting gears while in motion is possible, but it’s equally simple to bring the machine to a stop, engage the appropriate gear, and then resume your journey.

However, it’s important to note that when switching between forward and reverse, the S26 Shuttle XL must always be completely stationary and the clutch must always be used. This ensures safe and seamless transitions between these two essential modes of operation.


Throttle and Accelerator

The Solis S26 Shuttle makes it easy for users to control the engine’s speed with a convenient hand throttle located on the right side of the steering column. If you want to increase the Engine RPM (Revolutions Per Minute), simply push the hand throttle gently forward. Conversely, to decrease the RPM, pull it backward.

For everyday driving tasks with the Solis S26 Shuttle, it’s recommended to maintain an RPM of approximately 2000. However, when you need to engage the Power Take-Off (PTO), it’s best to operate at around 2600 RPM. When using the PTO, it’s crucial to ensure that the RPM stays within the range of 2500 to 2700 RPM to ensure that the PTO functions at the correct rotational speed. You can easily verify this by observing the yellow line that surrounds the RPM gauge.


Attaching Your Machine to an Implement Using the Three-Point Linkage

To establish a connection between your machine and an implement using the three-point linkage, adhere to these simple steps:

  1. Position your machine: Carefully reverse your machine towards the implement until the rear arms align with the two lower pins on the implement. Once aligned, ensure the tractor is in neutral, engage the parking brake, and switch off the machine. Exit the tractor and proceed to the rear.
  2. Connect the lower link arms: Concentrate on the left-hand side (LHS) rear lower link arm. Attach it to the LHS pin of the implement by inserting the link pin on the implement through the hole at the end of the lower link arm. Secure it in place using the clip provided on the lower linkage pin. Repeat this procedure for the opposite side.
  3. Address the top link: Attach the top link to the top pin on the implement. If necessary, adjust the length of the top link by turning the turnbuckle. Once the top link is correctly connected, move on to link the PTO (Power Take-Off) of the implement to the PTO shaft of the tractor.
  4. Connect the PTO shaft: Align the splines of the PTO shaft with those on the tractor and depress the locking pins on the PTO shaft. Push it firmly onto the tractor’s PTO shaft. After full insertion, retract the PTO shaft slightly until the locking pin engages with the locking collar on the tractor’s PTO shaft. It’s advisable to clean and grease the PTO splines on the tractor for smooth future removal and installation.
  5. Final inspection: Ensure that everything is securely locked in place, and all pins on the linkage are properly secured.

By following these steps, you will successfully establish a secure connection between your machine and the implement using the three-point linkage.


Using your implement

Now that we’ve covered the basics of starting and driving your Solis S26 Shuttle tractor and attaching an implement, let’s explore the effective use of various implements. It’s important to keep in mind that the operation of different implements can vary, so we strongly recommend reading the operator’s manual specific to each implement for a comprehensive understanding of its functionality. For the purpose of this guide, we’ll use a flail mower as an illustrative example.

Return to the operator’s seat of your Solis S26 Shuttle and follow the start-up procedure to restart the machine.

The Solis S26 Shuttle is equipped with a mechanical Rear PTO (Power Take-Off). to engage the PTO follow the below procedure.

  1. Press the Clutch: Depress the clutch pedal completely
  2. Select a PTO Speed: Engage the PTO lever from neutral to the desired speed The PTO lever is the yellow handled lever positioned on the Left hand side of the operators seat.
  3. Be safe: Look around to ensure there are no bystanders and ensure the implement is off the ground
  4. Select your gear: Follow the procedure above for driving your machine to select your desirted forward gear
  5. Remove the clutch: Slowly remove the clutch pedal and your machine will begin moving forward and the PTO will also come to life. Your Flail mower will now be spinning.

With these steps completed, you are now fully prepared to begin your cutting task with your Solis S26 Shuttle tractor and chosen implement. If using a PTO implement that requires you to get off the tractor while operating the PTO then follow the above procedure, however, do not engage a forward speed and leave the machine in neutral with the Park Brake engaged.


Adjusting the Three-Point Linkage’s Height

When it comes to operating heavy machinery, precision is key. And when you’re dealing with a three-point linkage, the ability to fine-tune its height is absolutely crucial. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the linkage raise and lower control lever, an essential component that allows you to precisely adjust the lift of the rear linkage.

Located conveniently on the right-hand side of your operator’s seat, this control lever takes the form of a black Tee-bar handle. Its function is straightforward: pushing it forward lowers the linkage, while pulling it backward raises it. This level of control is especially valuable when you’ve just attached a flail mower and need to set it at the perfect cutting height or resting position on its skid plates and rear roller. To achieve this, simply slide the linkage control lever all the way forward.

Now, here’s a pro tip: after completing each run, it’s advisable to raise the flail mower slightly to facilitate your endpoint turn. Then, lower it again for the next cutting pass. This approach allows you to maintain precise control over the implement’s height throughout your task while preventing any unwanted scuffing that the skid plates might cause on the ground.

But what if you find that the linkage is moving too fast or too slow when lowering the implement? No worries – there’s a solution. Look for the Rate of Drop knob situated between your legs. By turning it clockwise, you can slow down the rate at which the linkage arms lower the implement. Conversely, rotating it counterclockwise will speed up the lowering process. Bonus: this knob also serves as a hitch transport lock. Turning it completely clockwise will prevent the implement from lowering, allowing for a secure locked position during machine transport.

Sometimes, you might notice that one side of the implement is sitting lower than the other. In such cases, you can easily rectify the situation by adjusting the vertical turnbuckles located on both the left and right sides of the lower 3-point linkage arms.

And finally, if you find that the machine isn’t level in the fore/aft direction, don’t worry – there’s a solution for that too. Use the turnbuckle on the top link to make the necessary adjustments. It’s essential to carry out these adjustments with the implement resting on the ground and with any weight removed from the rear linkage for the best results.


Optimising Tractor Conditions

In most typical situations, operating your machine in two-wheel drive mode is the way to go. However, when you find yourself facing tough and demanding conditions, it’s essential to know how to overcome them effectively. Here’s your guide on how to navigate out of a bind:

  1. Activate Four-Wheel Drive: When confronted with challenging terrain or slippery surfaces, you can engage the four-wheel drive to bolster your machine’s traction. To do this, locate the 4WD selector on the lower left-hand side of your operator’s seat, near the footwell. You can easily identify it by its distinctive orange handle.
  2. Enhance Traction with Differential Lock: When you require even more traction than four-wheel drive alone can provide, your machine is equipped with a differential lock for the rear wheels. To activate this feature, press the foot pedal using your left heel. You’ll find the differential lock control positioned just below the 4WD engagement lever.

By making use of these advanced features, you can ensure that your machine maintains optimal traction and can effectively navigate through challenging terrain and adverse conditions whenever the need arises. These capabilities give you the confidence to tackle even the toughest operating conditions with ease and precision.


Working with Hydraulic Spool Valves: Safety and Proper Procedures

When you’re working with specific implements, like the hydraulic offset flail mower from Iron & Earth Equipment, utilizing the rear hydraulic spool valves is a necessity.

You’ll find the hydraulic quick couplers located at the rear of your machine. To attach a hydraulic coupler, follow these steps:

  1. Turn off the machine.
  2. Firmly push the hydraulic coupler into the quick coupler.

When it’s time to detach the coupler, do the following:

  1. Again, turn off the machine.
  2. When it’s safe to do so, move the hydraulic control lever forwards and backwards. This action releases all pressure from the hydraulic lines.
  3. Retract the quick coupler collar on the tractor, and use a “push and pull” motion to remove the quick coupler from the tractor.

Once you’ve securely attached the implement, you can manipulate the DCV (Directional Control Valve) control lever to regulate the hydraulic flow. The direction you move the lever depends on how the implement is plumbed.

A crucial reminder: when dealing with hydraulics, it’s absolutely essential to wear complete PPE (Personal Protective Equipment). Mishandling hydraulic oil pressure can pose serious hazards, so make sure to take all necessary precautions to ensure your safety and the safety of those around you. Your well-being is paramount when working with hydraulic systems.


Ensuring Comfort in Your New Solis S26 Shuttle XL

The Solis S26 Shuttle is designed with your comfort in mind, ensuring that your workdays are not just productive but also enjoyable. Here’s how you can customize and maximize your comfort:

  1. Fore-aft Seat Adjustment: Tailor the driver’s seat to your liking with ease. To move it forward or backward, simply use the lever located on the lower left-hand side of the operator’s seat.
  2. Adjust the Spring tension: Fine-tune the spring tension of the seat to your preference by adjusting the dial positioned at the top of the seat’s back. Tighten the dial to increase tension, or loosen it to decrease tension.
  3. Vertical Height Adjustment: To find the perfect seating height, look to the lower right-hand side of the seat’s back. You’ll find the vertical height adjuster. Turn this mechanism to effortlessly raise or lower the seat to your desired height.
  4. Armrest Comfort: Your Solis S26 comes equipped with armrests for added comfort during those long work hours. These armrests can be customized to your preference. Adjust the inclination of each armrest using the dials located beneath them.

By making these ergonomic adjustments, you’ll ensure that your time spent operating the Solis S26 Shuttle is both productive and comfortable. This, in turn, enables you to work efficiently and with ease, making your daily tasks more enjoyable.


Seeking Further Information

While we’ve made every effort to provide comprehensive information in this guide, we strongly recommend reviewing the operator manual for your new Solis S26 Shuttle XL. If you find yourself with any lingering questions or uncertainties, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our approachable team at Iron & Earth Equipment. You can reach us at 01452 452 535.

Remember, there are no foolish questions when it comes to your equipment. Feel free to ask, and our team is here to provide the assistance you need.

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