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Dan McLaughlin
09-12-2003, 6:38 PM
I'm looking to buy a two stage snow blower. Most of the reviews I have read are for blowers that are no longer in production. Looking for recommendations :) or warnings :( concerning either specific models or brands in general (Toro, MTD etc). Thanks.

David LaRue
09-12-2003, 7:04 PM
I'm looking to buy a two stage snow blower. Most of the reviews I have read are for blowers that are no longer in production. Looking for recommendations :) or warnings :( concerning either specific models or brands in general (Toro, MTD etc). Thanks.


I used to repair just about anything with a motor on it, and with snowblowers my favorite in the 2-stage homeowner size is Ariens. although I have never been a big fan of Tecumseh engines, they seem to do the job with their Snow King seems to do a great job. :)

Btw, I have heard rumors :confused: that there is two versions of the Ariens products, one that is sold at big boxes and one that is sold at mower shops. The Big Box versions I hear are thrifted in certain areas like bearings, transmissions, to get cost efficiencies.

Dan McLaughlin
09-12-2003, 7:15 PM
Thanks for the quick reply. I thought (dangerous with so little knowledge) that most of the blowers, regardless of the mfg, were using Tecumseh engines. Stopped at HD (buying the discounted PC8529) and found out that most of the snowblowers will be on display within the next two weeks. Also found out that what stock they have today is basically all of the stock they will have for the season, unless they can do some intrastore transfers. Mfgs make snowblowers in the summer and lawn mowers in the winter.

Of course, if I buy a snowblower, it probably won't snow all winter - cheap insurance :D

Kevin Gerstenecker
09-12-2003, 9:57 PM
Dan, most of the manufacturers use the Tecumseh Engine for Snowblower applications. The seem to be a better cold weather engine than B&S. John Deere makes a good Snowblower, as does Ariens. Stay away from Craftsman, they can be a nightmare to get parts for. Now that HD has the John Deere line, you may get the best deal on a JD Blower there. Toro used to make snowblowers, not sure if they still do. Some of the Toro blowers had 2 cycle engines, but they were mostly the small models. A local business has a Snowblower with rubber tracks on it instead of tires. I'm not sure what brand it is, they have had it as long as I can remember, and it is a BEAST! Really moves the white stuff though! ;)

Dan Smith
09-12-2003, 9:58 PM
I will throw in my $0.02 here....

Where I grew (northern adirondacks) up we had SNOW from November until May, and usually at least a foot or so at a time. We had a rather small 5 hp Snapper (Tecumseh) that worked great. Really tossed the snow and never had a problem.

Last year, after we moved into our house, and shoveling our much larger than it looks driveway after the first two heavy snow falls, I got a blower. a 7HP Troybuilt at Lowes. It also has a Tecumseh engine. It does ok, but I seem to remember the little Snapper handling the wetter and heavier snow better. The Troybuilt does great when it is cold enough to keep the snow powdery, but once it gets slushy, it is lucky to clear much beyond its own path.

again just my $0.02, and I have also heard about the lower quality products specially made for the box stores as well as Walmart.

Dave Anderson NH
09-12-2003, 11:05 PM
Three years ago I got tired of either shoveling a 80 foot driveway with a hill or waiting for the plow guy to eventually show up. I asked for advice on the old Badger Pond website. As a result I bought an 8 HP Simplicity. These aren't sold in the big box sand tend to be a bit on the expensive side, but living in NH where we usually get a wee bit of snow I figured it was worth the money. It has done a fine job for me up to and including storms of 18" of heavy wet stuff. Just remember that none of the snowblowers will work well with snow which has a bottom layer consisting of slush. They eventually produce a plug of ice in the chute which has to be removed manually with the snowblower turned off and the sparkplug disconnected. Failure to take these precautions could cost you part of your hand.
Here's hoping we don't get a foot on Thanksgiving day like we did last year.

Ken Frantz
09-13-2003, 12:39 PM
OT OF THE OT

Isn't it kinda early to talk about "SNOW" what ever that is??????

"SNOW" is the reason I live in Central Florida---I love it!!!! HI HI HI.
Born and raised in the plains of Oklahoma and Kansas. I heard a fella on the Ford N tractor board that made the following comment about snow: THE ONLY THING BETWEEN OKLAHOMA AND ALASKA TO KEEP THE SNOW OUT IS A BARB WIRE FENCE AND IT WAS DOWN!!!

My screen saver (wallpaper) is a snow scene from a fella by the name Dave Smith in upper part of NY state just to remind me of that stuff!!!

Everytime I hear about snowblowers, I think of my Buddy here in Florida that had a small equipment business in RI.

He said one year he had snowblowers, a good stock of them and didn't get much snow that year. So one of the chicken farmers ask him if one of them snowblowers would work on cleaning out the chicken barn. So they put there heads together and modified one and made a chicken _____ blower. He told me that the word got around and sold all of his stock!!! But he did say---I don't recall--- that there was just one or two that would work right with the mod on it.

If anyone is interested in this modification, I will give him a holler and get the information if it still work on some of the newer models.

I am not telling you a story about this now!!!

KEN

Lee Schierer
09-15-2003, 12:19 PM
I have an 8Hp Toro two stage that is about 20 years old that blows snow really well. Toro still makes snow blowers, so I would look closely at them. The easiest starting snowblower I've ever seen is the 5 Hp Honda that my mother purchased. It pull starts (she's 72) with just my finger tips. Even after sitting all summer, it will start on the first pull in the fall. It has tracks instead of tires and does a good job of moving snow.

No matter which blower you get here are a few tips that will make your snowblowing life easier.

Before the first snow fall, Start the engine and spray WD-40 all over the impellar, chute and auger. Make sure the surfaces are well coated.

In the spring after tha last snow, change the oil and put gas stabilizer in the gas tank. that way its ready for that first surprise snow in the fall.

Never, never use your hand to clear a clog even if the blower is turned off.

An ounce or two of Dry gas in the gas tank every other fill up will take care of any gas line moisture problems.

Never point the chute toward the house while blowing snow. Rocks will go twice as far as the snow being thrown. DAMHIKT.

Dave Avery
09-15-2003, 2:18 PM
I have a 8 or 9 hp Honda, can't remember which, and it's simply amazing..... throws deep, heavy snow 25+feet. As Lee said, it's also VERY easy to start. One other thing about Honda's, they hold their resale value extremely well.

Carl Eyman
09-15-2003, 6:41 PM
I don't know how a modified machine would wok in the cow or bull barn, but I can give you a list of people that probably can do better than any machine.

Rob Russell
09-26-2003, 10:05 AM
I've got a 1979 Ariens 10HP, 32" blower that I bought used about 8 years ago. It was (ab)used commercially before I bought it, so over the years I've replaced the front differential and 2 years ago replaced the motor (now 11 HP). Still costs less than a new one.

There are indeed 2 versions of the Ariens. The one you buy at the local service shop has some heavier duty components. For example, look at the skids. On mine, they're almost 1/2" thick plate on the bottom. The HD ones are thin sheet metal.

My neighbor has a Honda. It throws the snow a mile and is quieter than the Ariens. I'd probably still buy the Ariens to keep more of my $ in the USA, even if it's not quite as good as the Honda.

I have to believe that the John Deere sold at HD is not the same machine sold at a "dealer", similarly to the Ariens.

A neighbor was looking at blowers and found the prices to be about the same on the bigger blowers. The local guy also sets up and delivers the machine.

Rob

Ace Karner
09-26-2003, 10:31 AM
"Snow blowers" we don't need no steeking "Snow Blowers"
:D

Doug Jones
09-26-2003, 6:32 PM
He said the "S" word.

Ken, would that be considered a discriminatory word? Subject for removal from the forum.






All in good humor, Doug

Jerry Crawford
09-28-2003, 4:00 PM
I'm looking to buy a two stage snow blower. Most of the reviews I have read are for blowers that are no longer in production. Looking for recommendations :) or warnings :( concerning either specific models or brands in general (Toro, MTD etc). Thanks.


I don't know what a two-stage blower is? But, I bought a Husqvara (sp) 7-32 a couple of winters ago and it has done well for me. I have to plow a path out to mey shop every winter and the snow pack is about 4-5 feet int eh back yard by end of February. The 7 HP Husky is 32 " wide and will drive right through the garage side door into the back yard. Throws a stream of snow about 20-30 feet and I can change the throw direction with the crank of a handle when I begin getting it back in my face from the wind. It has an electric start too so I plug it in and push the button - no hauling on that rope. I bought mine used at the local "Tool Crib" in Sommersworth NH and paid $700 for it. A bargan and I'm keeping it!

Jason Roehl
09-28-2003, 5:48 PM
I don't know what a two-stage blower is?

Jerry, a 2-stage snowblower has a screw to collect the snow (the horizontal one you see in front) and a second, vertical screw to throw the snow out the chute.

Dan McLaughlin
09-28-2003, 6:53 PM
A brief explanation of a two stage blower from ConsumerSearch.com

http://www.consumersearch.com/www/lawn_and_garden/snow_blowers/fullstory.html


"If you have deeper snow and a greater area to clear, or you have a gravel driveway, you'll need a two-stage snow thrower. The first stage of these machines is a slow-turning metal auger, unlike the rapidly spinning auger of single-stage units. The second stage is a fast-spinning impeller that takes the snow from the auger and zaps it out the chute - which, naturally, consumes more power. A 4-cycle engine (at 5 to 12 horsepower) with at least four forward and several reverse speeds powers these machines, so they're actually self-propelled. You provide the guidance, and make sure not to run over things you don't want scooped up and shot out the chute - like, say, small pets.

Unlike single-stage augers, two-stage auger blades aren't supposed to touch the plowing surface and will consequently leave some snow. But you don't want to leave too much, so check to see how close the scraper bar adjusts relative to the skid shoes (clearing paths vary between 21 and 33 inches). Two-stage models will work fine on surfaces with loose material and on slopes. For most home use, two-stagers with 7- to 9-horsepower engines will work quite well, and handle between 8 and 16 inches of snow; they cost between $600 and $1300. Once you reach 10- to 13-horsepower engines, you're talking top dollar ($1300 to $2000) and top performance; these machines will handle steep slopes, uneven surfaces and deep, wet snow. They'll probably keep your hands warm, too, with a heater in the handles."

Jerry Crawford
09-29-2003, 10:30 AM
Jerry, a 2-stage snowblower has a screw to collect the snow (the horizontal one you see in front) and a second, vertical screw to throw the snow out the chute.

AH! of course - that makes sense. thanks.

All this talk about 1 and 2 stage's caused me to go out and take a good look at my Husky and it would appear it's two stage. Behind the horizontal auger is an impeller unit. The auger packs the snow into the impeller and that blows the snow up and out of the chute very effectivly. Completly self propelled and with 4 fwd and 2 rev gears I've run that thing down my 300 foot drive way and it is a real champion. Which reminds me, I need to get it over to the store for a tune up before winter hits here in Maine. :mad:

Damn, the interesting stuff you can learn here. Anyone have a soultion for the mid east crisis :D

Jason Roehl
09-29-2003, 11:10 AM
Damn, the interesting stuff you can learn here. Anyone have a soultion for the mid east crisis :D

Yes, several of us do, but we're not supposed to discuss politics here. :D :cool:

Jerry Crawford
09-30-2003, 9:58 AM
Yes, several of us do, but we're not supposed to discuss politics here. :D :cool:

:D got it! ;)