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Bought a Snowthrower - Any Tips?


Truck, Trailer, and Outdoor Power Equipment Discussion, Repairs.

Questions on your truck, trailer, commercial lawn mowers, lawn mower, mower parts, lawn tractors, engines, edgers, trimmers, pole saws, aerators, hydro seeders, snow plows, chain saws, stump grinders??
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  #21  
Old 10-15-2010, 09:17 PM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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Snowthrower number three to be delivered next Wednesday - in it's original box, with the instructions "DO NOT ASSEMBLE" added to the new order per store manager.

The manager was very nice about the whole thing. He didn't understand why anyone would have assembled it, as he has a code to enter prompting such service if desired, and he did not request it.
When it was dropped off, I asked "Who assembled it?", the delivery guy said that "the warehouse did" - that "they do that when people have trouble assembling a product". I guess that could be seen as a nice gesture, but I take it as an insult... I'm not a moron - there are only a few steps needed to "assemble" the thing, (yet THEY screwed it up - go figure) but when the parts are out of spec, there isn't much anyone can do about it.

Like I explained to the manager, I didn't ask to have it assembled, nor did anyone tell me that the replacement would come assembled - if they had, I would have told them not to do so. I don't trust someone at a store to assemble a wheelbarrow properly, and I sure as heck don't want them dicking around with a $1,000 piece of equipment.

Honestly, I could have taken it apart, and put it together properly, but why should I? America seems to have accepted this type of poor quality/ineptitude as the norm. Screw that - speak up when something isn't right. To do otherwise is to say that it's "OK" to do a poor job.

Cripes, we may actually have snow on the ground before this is resolved.
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  #22  
Old 10-20-2010, 03:54 PM
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Snowthrower number "3" was delivered today - in the box.

I just finished putting it together. No real issues - the part that would not align on the other unit went together with no problem.

Well, break time is over... time to go put some gas in it and fire her up. Gotta try the electric start - that cracks me up. Just how lazy have we become?

... says the guy who opted for POWER STEERING!

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  #23  
Old 10-20-2010, 11:17 PM
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and to think how many people get their mowers serviced by a sears tech....
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  #24  
Old 11-07-2010, 06:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hedgemaster View Post
Snowthrower number "3" was delivered today - in the box.

I just finished putting it together. No real issues - the part that would not align on the other unit went together with no problem.

Well, break time is over... time to go put some gas in it and fire her up. Gotta try the electric start - that cracks me up. Just how lazy have we become?

... says the guy who opted for POWER STEERING!

An electric start in my part of the county isn't a luxury. When its 0 F and below and the wind is blowing it's all most imposable to pull start my machine. But then I leave it in the truck bed outside, as I have no garage. Also that chute adjusting mechanism failed on mine when it was sub-zero(less then a month old). It wouldn't hold the upper chute in place. The cable seamed gummy an wouldn't aloue it to lock in place.Luck would have it the a old auger and chute off my old blower fit on the new one. so I use that. That was 2 years ago and still going strong. Maybe they made some modification since.But it didnt work for me. My machine(White, made by MTD) also has heated handles which are !!GREAT!!
Good luck blowing.
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  #25  
Old 11-07-2010, 08:51 PM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martywdx View Post
An electric start in my part of the county isn't a luxury. When its 0 F and below and the wind is blowing it's all most imposable to pull start my machine. But then I leave it in the truck bed outside, as I have no garage. Also that chute adjusting mechanism failed on mine when it was sub-zero(less then a month old). It wouldn't hold the upper chute in place. The cable seamed gummy an wouldn't aloue it to lock in place.Luck would have it the a old auger and chute off my old blower fit on the new one. so I use that. That was 2 years ago and still going strong. Maybe they made some modification since.But it didnt work for me. My machine(White, made by MTD) also has heated handles which are !!GREAT!!
Good luck blowing.
Thanks for the input.

I have my doubts about that "joystick" controller... it's a great concept, but we'll see how it holds up in actual usage. I think I read that they have reworked them as there were issues with earlier models - time will tell.

********

Oh yeah, I forgot to post this before, but after I put it together and ran it around in he yard, I noted that the auger was turning slowly when it was idling. The cable was too snug... because it got jammed into a slot for another cable when I unfolded the handle while assembling it. It's STUCK in there. I SWEAR there's a black cloud following me.

I'm using the warranty to have it repaired. I opted for the "at home" service when purchasing it, so they are coming next week to replace that cable for me. (The cable shielding is stripped where it's jammed in)


It ran well - started on the first pull and the power steering is pretty nice. Just need that cable replaced, and I'm ready for the snow!

I'll keep you all updated on my continuing saga.


ETA:
Does anyone wax, or apply silicone to the inner surfaces to help keep snow from sticking? Just curious if that would help or hurt.
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  #26  
Old 11-08-2010, 08:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hedgemaster View Post

ETA:
Does anyone wax, or apply silicone to the inner surfaces to help keep snow from sticking? Just curious if that would help or hurt.
you might try fluid film, it would last longer and you are using a rust preventive. It should work better then silicone just not sure how it will do.
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  #27  
Old 11-08-2010, 03:43 PM
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I would be tempted to just use WD40 and then Purple Power to cleanup later.
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  #28  
Old 11-18-2010, 03:27 PM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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Bring on the white stuff!

Here's some pics of the now-fixed snowthrower...











I found that it JUST fits on my cargo carrier. That will be ideal for doing jobs around the neighborhood and perhaps less hassle than using the utility trailer...













I was running it in the back yard the other day to test it out and must say that the power steering works pretty well. I also learned that the "plug in" headlight kit will not work on this model.
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  #29  
Old 11-18-2010, 04:04 PM
brian'slawncare brian'slawncare is offline
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Default power steering

so what exactly is "power steering"?

and do you find it easier than regular? if so is it worth $100? because the same blower is at sears but $100 less because the only thing its missing is power steering.....

Also, overall how do you like the product?
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  #30  
Old 11-18-2010, 04:10 PM
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The thing I realized with Craftsman, is that gas goes fast!

I suggest having 5 bags of salt in your truck and no less. I'm used to Montreal winters, so I'm looking at the snow blower wondering if you are going to die out there or not.

I used a snow blower on year on several properties, the thing is; it's still not efficient. This could just be me here in Montreal... We could wake up every single morning to realize yet again, the snow is up to our necks. lol.

The tool you have should take you about 60 minutes per property, though you will figure out that your going to need several shovels also. Snow throwers/blowers don't exactly do a clean job and will sometimes drive over compacted snow.

You may also come in contact with ice, which is impossible to remove with a snow blower/thrower. It will take you HOURS with a shovel as well.... I suggest throwing some salt down and using a pick axe to destroy the ice (not the property).

Also, tractors have the advantage of removing compacted mounds. Here in Montreal if the city comes to plow the streets, all the snow from the street goes right back into the end of the driveways.... A snow blower WILL NOT work for this. The snow will need to be removed with a shovel.

60 mins - 3 hours per job if you are working consistently ignoring the pain in your arms and back.

Which means, you may not be able to service more than one property every time it snows... 3 customers may be your max. But after one, you may be exhausted too exhausted to continue.




^ This is all from experience. Snow blowers suck... You need a tractor for driveways.

The only way you can make it worth it, is if customers were willing to pay you $100 per shot... But competition already has you severely beaten, and they have better equipment... discouraging man....

If you want to break your back and go through hell for $35.00/$50.00 per shot, it wont add up in the end. You will get customers, you just wont be able to do them.

If you charge them for the entire season matching your competitors price, you will lose big time... You are doing 50 times more work with less customers for peanuts, and a ton more chances to lose customers. Your only way into doing this is by charging per shot, though you'd be getting the worst customers considering all the smart and not cheap ones went with the guys with tractors.


I can suggest getting a plow for your truck, you really need heavy gear.




This is not a rant, it's more of me looking into my past and being mad lol... I learned a lot trying this out one year... never will I do it again..

The only snow removal I'll think of doing without a tractor, is walkway shoveling - that's it!

Last edited by CHEESE2009; 11-18-2010 at 04:19 PM.
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