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post #1 of 12 Old 01-14-2015, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
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Raising handles?

I'm new to snowblowers in general, so if there's some common knowledge I'm obviously missing please tell me.

Just got a new-to-me #920014 Compact 24" and tried it out for the first time today. Two related problems immediately became apparent:

1) It doesn't scrape down as well as I'd expect. It has a tendency to ride up over icy snow instead of digging in. (When I get it digging in it handles it just fine).

2) The handles are too short. The handles sit just below mid-thigh, which means I have to stoop slightly to hold them. My back isn't happy.

I imagine the solutions are to add some front weights and manufacture some handle extensions, or perhaps get bigger tires. Thoughts?
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post #2 of 12 Old 01-14-2015, 06:52 PM
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I believe any machine you have will ride up as yours is doing. I have heard some put weights on the auger housing, but don't know how well it works.

As for the handle height, we all suffer from that problem. I have seen some remedies for this online, but would not put them on my machine

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post #3 of 12 Old 01-14-2015, 07:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoyP View Post
I believe any machine you have will ride up as yours is doing. I have heard some put weights on the auger housing, but don't know how well it works.

As for the handle height, we all suffer from that problem. I have seen some remedies for this online, but would not put them on my machine

Welcome aboard !!
Can you show a few of the remedy's for the handles?
Or throw a link?

I don't have a problem with my Craftsman but the Snow Bird's are a bit low.
I have been trying to figure out a way to add something.

I hate shoveling SNOW!
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post #4 of 12 Old 01-17-2015, 07:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Ed View Post
Can you show a few of the remedy's for the handles?
Or throw a link?

I don't have a problem with my Craftsman but the Snow Bird's are a bit low.
I have been trying to figure out a way to add something.
Boy are you right. With absolutely no back problems whatsoever give me an hour out there and I feel like it takes me right back to the days I got stuck sleeping out in a hole with the US Army. I have always had a thing for super short guys ever since I had enough abuse and tossed my long ago girlfriends father into his own kitchen sink but ****. If I ever catch the midget Mini Me evil dirtbag engineer who decided all of us are 4' nothn tall I would feed him through the impeller.
Of all the crappy ideas in a long history of idiotic thoughts why hasn't anyone figured out that since the 1970's the majority of us are over 5'8"? It seems snowblowers are one of the worst examples of unyielding design. Just how often does the little woman go out there and blow snow anyways and even they are taller today so leaving the handles as they are is just plain stupid. I would thing that a company who took it upon themselves to make this ridiculously small leap of technology would gain fantastic sales.
Looking at mine the big hassle is having to redo the auger and drive cable's . The handlebars would be easy using cheap steel tubing from a steel mill or an old wrecked blowers handle section and welding it. Of course you would have to make up your own most likely since everything goes out of whack extending the handles. I did make my own drive cable assy last year after waiting 5 weeks for my idiot local dealer to get me one and it really works fine. Just a length of 1/8" cable 2 small turnbuckles and a 4 small cable clamps. Lead swage clamps are neater once it's all set up. Not as pretty but not going to stretch out of shape like the too tiny OEM's and cost $5 instead of $40. I haven't gotten around to doing the auger side yet but if I can pull it off stretching those handlebars is definitely going to happen. The problem with the auger is it works that body mounted lever downwards and isn't a straight pull like the drive. That most likely means having to find some generic motorcycle cable ect of the right length and cobing that together. That's not exactly the sort of Mickey Mouse crap you need to be getting into during snow season.

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post #5 of 12 Old 01-17-2015, 09:34 AM
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I hear you, there must be midgets out there designing these!

My Craftsman's height is fine, I extended the shift lever so I don't have to bend down to reach it all the time. That was too low.

For my Old Snow Bird it would be easy, I think. The old blower doesn't have anything that you have to hold to operate it, has no dead man control. If you slip and fall it will just keep going down the street.

Here are my handle bars off, I don't have a welder but I could have someone just weld me up some taller bars and get them chromed?
Click me,
Raising handles?-pb290048.jpg


Or else just make some up and clamp them on somehow?
I don't want to mess up the original bars. Maybe look for another junker machine and redo the bars? That way I have the originals?

I still have yet to use this on snow as we have not had any snow yet, but I know they are too low for me.
Raising handles?-pc130005-1.jpg


You won't be able to do much with your new one, it won't be as easy as mine would be.

I hate shoveling SNOW!
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5 Horse, Tecumseh HSSK50-67392S
22" Dual Stage
***********************
"Classic" 1963 S-226 Snowbird
4 Horse (orig) Briggs & Stratton#6305201
22" Dual Stage
***********************
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post #6 of 12 Old 01-17-2015, 11:02 AM
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Can't advise you about the handles, but if you can't figure it out I'd bet a good yard machines repair shop, or bike shop would do a nice mod for you (one that sells high-end bikes and custom frames, not a big box store).

As for the tendency to climb, I'd recommend you add 20 pounds to the front above the auger housing. (25 pounds if you have a snow cab). Don't bother with the expensive 10 pound weights sold by the snow thrower makers -- improvise with some heavy stock from a junk yard instead. I used dumbbell weights on my last machine (a Noma 27") for about 8 years with excellent results.
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post #7 of 12 Old 01-17-2015, 11:16 AM
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Can't advise you about the handles, but if you can't figure it out I'd bet a good yard machines repair shop, or bike shop would do a nice mod for you (one that sells high-end bikes and custom frames, not a big box store).

As for the tendency to climb, I'd recommend you add 20 pounds to the front above the auger housing. (25 pounds if you have a snow cab). Don't bother with the expensive 10 pound weights sold by the snow thrower makers -- improvise with some heavy stock from a junk yard instead. I used dumbbell weights on my last machine (a Noma 27") for about 8 years with excellent results.

Mine rides up too. I think much of that has to do with having the skids set high due to 700 feet of gravel driveway. When I had them down flush for the blacktop portion the tendency is much reduced. Good idea about the weights. I'm going to make a couple nice ones when I get home using 2 old pickup wheel drums filled with concrete. The hard part is finding a way to bracket them on without messing things up. Ah well, I guess if I just finished making a whole rear frame for my Chitty Chevy truck then a weight box is just a walk in the park.
That bicycle style handlbar rig should be simple to mod. All you need is someone to bend it for you. Even if they aren't 100 percent the same it won't really matter. How anybody except Mini Me could use an outfit like that is beyond me. I notice all the new lawn mowers are like that too, cursed midgets. That's why I mow my grass with a farm tractor. The only thing missing is a cup holder to hold my beer and I got that on my bigger tractor if need be.

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post #8 of 12 Old 01-17-2015, 12:32 PM
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Has anybody noticed that in the original post the handle height is not up to par for him but he bought a compact model. Just thinking out loud here but those who are tall may have to buy a larger machine. I have seen the machines out there since I love snowblowers I look at many and I have noticed they are not all small. There are some really small ones though I agree even with two-stage models. My friend went with an average size machine he specifically bought one that his daughter could use what he wasn't home so I guess when they design machines they have to design all sizes. Maybe the tallest of you will not find one tall enough for you, I suppose the manufactures should make some with extended handles as my neighbor is 6 foot 5 and he clearly has a sore back after he's done but I do believe that most of these machines are designed for people in the average range and my friends simplicity 824 is usable by his 11-year-old daughter who has been trained to use it and is very safe with it.

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post #9 of 12 Old 01-17-2015, 12:35 PM
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If you are looking for a machine that will not " ride up " tryout a used Powershift. ;-)

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post #10 of 12 Old 01-17-2015, 02:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driz View Post
snip
That's why I mow my grass with a farm tractor. The only thing missing is a cup holder to hold my beer and I got that on my bigger tractor if need be.
If you had the cup holder you wouldn't be able to call it "work".
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