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jester121
Premium
join:2003-08-09
Lake Zurich, IL
reply to SwedishRider

Re: Wheel-drive vs Track-drive vs Tractor-mounted Snow Blowers

Click for full size
Click for full size
Not so much on the super deep snow, but this one kicks ass for width. I forget how much it costs though...


SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1

Again, that looks cool, but even with the dualie wheels, I would have to question performance on a consistent 9-degree slope. it's not the width and speed that's the issue as much as it's the traction on the way up (and also on the way down).


robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1

What is the availability of snow equipment for your rider? Is it something the dealer keeps in stock or at a regional warehouse or does it take a month to get it?



SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1

said by robbin:

What is the availability of snow equipment for your rider? Is it something the dealer keeps in stock or at a regional warehouse or does it take a month to get it?

Good question. I'm in the process of getting that answer. Rider parts and accessories seem to be available, but timeframe from order to pick-up thus far has been more than for an average tractor.


pike
Premium,MVM
join:2001-02-01
Washington, DC
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to Draiman

said by Draiman:

It's a state road so the end of the driveway gets heavy wet snow.

Was not aware the authority responsible for maintaining the right-of-way determined the type and density of snowfall accumulation!


Draiman
Let me see those devil horns in the sky

join:2012-06-01
Kill Devil Hills, NC
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS

said by pike:

said by Draiman:

It's a state road so the end of the driveway gets heavy wet snow.

Was not aware the authority responsible for maintaining the right-of-way determined the type and density of snowfall accumulation!

Then I'm glad I could broaden your knowledge!
--
IF YOU FIND ANY MISTAKES IN MY WORK...Please consider that they are there for a purpose. I try to please everyone and there is always someone looking for mistakes!


Pacrat
Old and Cranky
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-10
Cortland, OH
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
reply to pike

I believe the statement referred more to the accumulation of wet/slush deposited at the end of the driveway by the snow plows. I get that around here. Seems it never fails that I just get the drive done and the city decides to send the plows around for one more pass and the end of the drive gets buried with slush. Fortunately, my Cub makes short work of all that "gunk". I have learned to delay as long as possible, before cleaning my drive.

I remember some years ago, we seemed to get a lot of very heavy snows during the day, and the slush the plows deposited at the ends of the drives in the neighborhood had a distinct tendency to freeze in a solid mass right after dark. I helped out a lot of the neighbors that year... just clearing the bottom 15' of their drives after the plows went through. At that was with my old, smaller tractor and 40" blower. The new Cub 2550 w/42" blower just eats up that stuff and tosses it aside.

I have found, through "trial & error", over the years, is that traction is no problem if you get to the drive before it has been driven on and packed down. I used to need chains on my old Cub, but the new one is considerably heavier, so far, the chains have been unnecessary. The suitcase weights I have on the back serve more to counter-balance the snow-blower attachment hanging off the front than they do for traction. I'm sure they do aid the traction, but I'm not sure they're necessary.
--
Keep your eye on the ball, your shoulder to the wheel, your nose to the grindstone, and your ear to the ground. Now, try to work in that position!!!


robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1

1 edit
reply to SwedishRider

Just had a thought -- what if you bought a second set of tires for winter use and put ice studs in them? It says that they can be taken out but seems easier to just keep a winter set.

»www.kenjones.com/Scripts/XListAl···ledFrom=

[edit] Then have the tires foam filled and it won't matter if the studs penetrated the tire

»www.airfreetires.com/shopping/c-···ill.aspx



dwane
I recommend Start.ca

join:2003-10-08
Pembroke, ON
Reviews:
·Start Communicat..
·Cogeco Cable
reply to SwedishRider

I own a big beast of a track driven snowblower.
It does an fine job, but pivoting and turning can require a little more physical effort than a wheeled machine.
A lot of how your blower performs has to do with what kind of snow you're moving - light powder vs. packed wet snow.
I'd dread having to move wet snow while on a steep grade, everything gets slippery.
My driveway is chipped limestone. My first winter blowing it out was last year, but like someone else commented, you purposly leave some snow down to pack and create a nice hard surface so you don't end up sending chips all over your lawn. I just set the skis higher about an inch on the front of the blower.
In the long and short of it, I don't think there's a huge benefit/difference between track driven or wheel driven blowers.
Track drives just look more kick-ass.
--
"There are no dangerous weapons, only dangerous men." - Sgt. Zim.



Chinabound
Premium
join:2002-12-21
Antioch, IL
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to SwedishRider

Click for full size
Hi Jim. I've read your dilemma, I've watched all of the videos, and I'm from Westport, so I'm very familiar with your environment. I think this is going to bug me until I post.

Every video gave me the same feeling inside. You get your share of heavy, wet snow in Connecticut - more than the light, fluffy stuff. I honestly don't think you will be happy with any attachment you decide on for your Swedish Rider. It doesn't move fast enough and you know the wheels are going to slip. The tires on it now are designed to be easy on turf, so I can't imagine they'd be worth a damn in the snow.

I bought a very nice used Toro two stage a few years ago. I was shoveling a 100 foot driveway for years, and decided I had had it and found a great deal on the blower. Big, powerful son-of-a-bitch. Well, it made the job a lot easier, but I was still out there for an hour or two (depending on the amount of snow), only this time I was freezing my ass off because I wasn't working my body.

That's when I decided to look into an atv. It was the best decision I could have made, and I was still unaware that we'd be buying a house three months later with a much longer driveway. 340 feet from the road to my attached garage, and then another 230 feet around to the buildings in the back.
Not only does it handle any amount of any kind of snow, including the heavy crap the plows leave at the end of our driveways, but it never slips and the added speed available is a lot of help when encountering high, dense snow drifts. The speed and momentum allows it to handle anything. Plus, I can't forget to mention it is a very fun way to do something we all find a pain in the ass to do, as well.

If you have the funds and the space to store it - this is what I'd strongly suggest. You can also use it for a lot of other tasks, depending on the size of your property.

iknow
Premium
join:2012-03-25

said by Chinabound:

Hi Jim. I've read your dilemma, I've watched all of the videos, and I'm from Westport, so I'm very familiar with your environment. I think this is going to bug me until I post.

Every video gave me the same feeling inside. You get your share of heavy, wet snow in Connecticut - more than the light, fluffy stuff. I honestly don't think you will be happy with any attachment you decide on for your Swedish Rider. It doesn't move fast enough and you know the wheels are going to slip. The tires on it now are designed to be easy on turf, so I can't imagine they'd be worth a damn in the snow.

I bought a very nice used Toro two stage a few years ago. I was shoveling a 100 foot driveway for years, and decided I had had it and found a great deal on the blower. Big, powerful son-of-a-bitch. Well, it made the job a lot easier, but I was still out there for an hour or two (depending on the amount of snow), only this time I was freezing my ass off because I wasn't working my body.

That's when I decided to look into an atv. It was the best decision I could have made, and I was still unaware that we'd be buying a house three months later with a much longer driveway. 340 feet from the road to my attached garage, and then another 230 feet around to the buildings in the back.
Not only does it handle any amount of any kind of snow, including the heavy crap the plows leave at the end of our driveways, but it never slips and the added speed available is a lot of help when encountering high, dense snow drifts. The speed and momentum allows it to handle anything. Plus, I can't forget to mention it is a very fun way to do something we all find a pain in the ass to do, as well.

If you have the funds and the space to store it - this is what I'd strongly suggest. You can also use it for a lot of other tasks, depending on the size of your property.

those are big AG tires, much bigger and more aggressive than the turf tires on the swedish rider, which are made for grass. also, you'll get coated in snow, maybe so coated, you have to stop often and brush it off so you can access the controls on that, unless you have a hard cab for it, which has a nice windshield wiper. with the soft cabs you have to get out and wipe the windshield by hand often. and they are made of soft plastic, so have to be replaced often.


SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1
reply to SwedishRider

I called Husqvarna customer support, and the support rep said that chains CAN be used so long as ALL four wheels are chained at the same time. He indicated the problem is when only one axle is chained and not the other. Both dealers I spoke with are investigating further on their ends with dealer tech support, but they agree with that rep's position with respect to chains on all four tires.

This makes me rethink my position. I was just about decided on the track-drive walk-behind snow blower, but this changes the playing field substantially. AWD with chains and the counterweight could very easily outperform the tracks and allow me to sit and ride rather than have to wrestle with a standalone unit. And the blower/chains combo is substantially cheaper than the track drive unit...

Rider Snow Blower: $1400
Track Drive Blower: $2000
Rider Snow Blade: ? (but probably $300ish)
Rider set of chains: ?

I could probably buy the plow blade, blower, and chains for about the same, or less than, the track drive unit. Guess I'm back to square one in my own mind... time to ponder...



SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1
reply to SwedishRider

I've looked high and low for a video of an AWD Rider removing snow on a steep driveway with a snow thrower or plow blade, and just can't find one. This is probably the best video I found of hillside performance while mowing though:

»www.youtube.com/watch?v=vMfAAoaLur0


SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1
reply to SwedishRider

Well, I think I'm 98% sure that I've made my decision. I'm pretty sure I'm going with the 1830EXLT 30" Track-drive Snow Thrower:

»www.husqvarna.com/us/products/sn···830exlt/

**********

My reasoning:

1) I have significant sloping walkways that can't be done with the Rider/snow thrower combo.

2) I can store the tracked snow thrower in my garage along with my vehicles while the Rider is out back in the shed for the winter. Otherwise, the Rider and attachments will need to be housed in one bay and one of my vehicles will need to be kicked out of the garage for the winter.

3) If I'm unhappy with the track snow thrower, I can find a buyer much easier than a buyer for the Rider snow thrower (which is a really small pool of potential buyers).

4) Less wear and tear on my Rider, which has a primary function of lawn care.

5) I'm not locked into the Rider design if/when I upgrade my tractor. In X years, I can get rid of the Rider and get any other mower design I choose and not have to consider now removal issues.

6) I'm confident the track drive will work on my sloping driveway... I am NOT sure if the Rider is up to the challenge of my sloped driveway and can't get a consistent straight answer from anyone (manufacturer or otherwise) as to what it legitimately can and can't use for snow grip assistance.

**********

The downsides to the track-drive is extra cost (which is quite a bit less than $600 difference when chains and ballast costs are included) and the fact that I've got another engine and unit to maintain. Those seem to be minor compared to the problems with the Rider/attachment issues.

The difference in price between the 27" and 30" track-drive units is 50 bucks ($1949 vs $1999, respectively) so it makes no sense to get the 27" machine.

Anything I haven't considered before I lock in my answer?



Msradell
P.E.
Premium
join:2008-12-25
Louisville, KY
reply to SwedishRider

All of your reasoning seems logical. The only one thing I'd have to really think about is the 27" vs. 30". Assuming they both have the same engine etc. the narrower one is going to be able to throw a little farther and be easier to maneuver on sidewalks. Also the wider one will really not save you that much. On a 20'wide driveway you're talking one more pass to finish it. Not that much difference.



SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1

said by Msradell:

All of your reasoning seems logical. The only one thing I'd have to really think about is the 27" vs. 30". Assuming they both have the same engine etc. the narrower one is going to be able to throw a little farther and be easier to maneuver on sidewalks. Also the wider one will really not save you that much. On a 20'wide driveway you're talking one more pass to finish it. Not that much difference.

I've had a few people who have said the same thing. Both dealers i consulted with have the 30" in stock, and neither carry the 27" model. They said that the 3" is easily worth the extra 50 bucks. I'm sure I could order the 27" if I really wanted one. I guess I should take a few measurements of my walkways and make a choice.

On the surface, I would tend to agree that 50 bucks is negligible in the grand scheme of things, but i guess I should be looking at functionality more than a 50 dollar bill.


SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1
reply to SwedishRider

Well, after much thought and wrangling, I ended up going with the Swedish Rider Snow Thrower. Husqvarna ended up confirming that I CAN use snow chains IF all four tires are chained (all or none). I decided that I'd buy the blower and try it without chains, and then buy the chains if I find I need them. Unit is 229 lbs and needs some assembly... I have my weekend project all lined up!


garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI

That will kick some serious snow ass, wow! I'd figure on the chains, though, with the slope you're talking about. Just hauling all that weight back up the hill will take some serious traction.


iknow
Premium
join:2012-03-25
reply to SwedishRider

you can try putting AG tires on the rider, maybe you won't need chains as often that way. the rider has grass tires on it now, they are designed to slip so they don't tear up the grass.


robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1

Still like the ice studs idea!

Expand your moderator at work


SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1
reply to SwedishRider

Re: Wheel-drive vs Track-drive vs Tractor-mounted Snow Blowers

Click for full size
Click for full size
Click for full size
Got it all assembled and mounted. Time to throw some serious snow! Bring on the white stuff!!

wth
Premium
join:2002-02-20
Iowa City,IA
Reviews:
·Mediacom
reply to Lurch77

said by Lurch77:

Trade in your Husky for this, problem solved.

Like WOW.... 7500 Tons per hour @ 25mph

wth
Premium
join:2002-02-20
Iowa City,IA
Reviews:
·Mediacom
reply to SwedishRider

said by SwedishRider:

Time to throw some serious snow! Bring on the white stuff!!

Now that you got the snowblower, you know your not going to get any snow this winter, but the rest of us will probably get buried.

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
Reviews:
·Callcentric
·callwithus

said by wth:

said by SwedishRider:

Time to throw some serious snow! Bring on the white stuff!!

Now that you got the snowblower, you know your not going to get any snow this winter, but the rest of us will probably get buried.

^ ^ What he said. The probability of snow is inversely proportional to the amount of money you spend getting ready for it. Expect five years of no snow.

But do get some chains for those wheels, with your grade you're going to need them.


SwedishRider
Rider on the Storm
Premium
join:2006-01-11
not Sweden
kudos:1
reply to SwedishRider

Question: How should I set the scraper blade and skid plates on the snowblower? I've referenced this site: »www.ereplacementparts.com/articl···wer.html

Seems to be two basic schools of thought on this: either scraper flush on the asphalt, or about 1/4 inch up from the tar. My thought would be to drop the scraper flush on the asphalt so as to clean as much snow as possible. That should help me travel up and down that 9* incline (16.5%). How do you folks set your blower skid plates and scraper?



Pacrat
Old and Cranky
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-10
Cortland, OH
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable

I have always set the scraper blade on my snowblowers about an eigth of an inch above the pavement. What I do is use a couple of wooden paint stirrers under the blade, lower the blower, then drop the skid shoes down to the pavement. Scraper blades are relatively pricey to replace, so it's recommended to not let them contact the paved surface too heavily. It also protects them from slight "humps & bumps" that might "ding" them up if they're flat on the ground. I've never had a problem with the blower not cleaning the drive completely down to the surface. On packed ice, I suppose it could be an issue, but for just snow removal, it works out just fine.
--
Keep your eye on the ball, your shoulder to the wheel, your nose to the grindstone, and your ear to the ground. Now, try to work in that position!!!


MrFixit1

join:1999-11-26
Madison, WI

I would also recommend doing a test run over all areas that you plan on removing snow from . Just in case there are some "bumps " that you did not notice .