Impeller kit fail- question - Snowblower Forum : Snow Blower Forums
 
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post #1 of 8 Old 08-13-2015, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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Impeller kit fail- question

So I bought a $35 impeller kit for my 35 year old ariens st824. I put the first rubber paddle on and noticed that the clearance was different at different parts of the housing. So the rubber would rub a ton on one side of the housing but not the other. When I cut back on the rubber paddle so it could rotate, there clearance on the other side (the side with the chute) was almost the same as before I put the **** thing on. I think the impeller housing warped over the years slightly? Either way, I took the paddle out and just left the two bolts in.

Will leaving those bolts in do damage to the balance of the impeller at full speed? Or will it be worse to have 2- 3/8 inch holes in one of the impeller fins?

What a pain this was and a let down.
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post #2 of 8 Old 08-13-2015, 10:23 PM
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The popular theory is once you get snow and ice stuck in there while using the machine the balance is gone anyway so I wouldn't bother too much. I also noticed that on my first install, but not too bad. In general the 2 I have done are slightly wider on the chute side. I did grind the weld down on one slightly where it was sticking up.

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post #3 of 8 Old 08-14-2015, 07:39 AM
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I would remove the bolts..I think it would upset the balance..
yes, snow and ice sticks when the machine is use, but the impeller is spinning so fast it probably sticks mostly evenly..because centrifugal force will spread it around evenly.

I would take the bolts out..

scot


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post #4 of 8 Old 08-14-2015, 02:22 PM
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They are both right depending.

If you only did this to one of the blades I'd take the bolts out. Rather have the loss of a little metal than the addition of two nuts and bolts causing an imbalance. For as small as the impeller is the bolts really aren't going to make much of a difference but it's just one thing less that might go wrong. Wrong as somehow coming loose and hitting your house, car, neighbor, dog ....

If you have the bolts on opposite blades or on all the blades you can remove them or leave them in. I'd likely remove them simply to have less weight the engine needs to spin.

Usually when you install the rubber you try to have it just a bit bigger than the smallest space and then you let it run a bit and the friction will automatically "clearance" it for you. You might check to see if somehow the bearing that supports the impeller has too much play or somehow shifted. Yours is the first time anyone has mentioned the mod not helping.
Could be a twisted housing too, might try loosening up the mounting bolts from body to auger housing and re-tightening.

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post #5 of 8 Old 08-14-2015, 08:52 PM
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I would check the bearing for slop. juts my 50 cents on that 1.

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post #6 of 8 Old 08-14-2015, 09:43 PM
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As long as the impeller/rubber clearance is tight at some point during its rotation shouldn't that result in increased efficiency?

any reduction in blowby = increased efficiency?

Regarding balance: isn't a properly designed impeller supposed to be loaded with snow during some part of its rotation, and unloaded during another? If this is true then its always going to be out of balance anyway (a la Shyrp's comment above)

The weight of the nuts/bolts are probably only a small percentage of the overall rotating mass (impeller + impeller shaft + snow) so they wont affect much.

All just hypothetical thoughts here of course

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Last edited by tdipaul; 08-14-2015 at 10:15 PM.
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post #7 of 8 Old 08-15-2015, 11:08 AM
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I've done this mod on three machines, one craftsman two ariens, get back at it, it's worth it! First time I did all four blades at once, buy the time I was doing the fourth I could no longer turn the impeller by hand and the belt screamed and smoked. Last one I did I ran machine to clearance it after each blade, the end product never looks like there's much added to the impeller, MAYBE 1/4". In my limited experience it was a vast improvement to the machine, and it polished the inside of the housing! Now get out and finish the job! Cursing and saying filthy things about it's mother helps tremendously.
Rob
Ps if u choose not to do it I'd remove the bolts. Don't worry about the imbalance
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post #8 of 8 Old 08-15-2015, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jenkinsm2 View Post
So I bought a $35 impeller kit for my 35 year old ariens st824. I put the first rubber paddle on and noticed that the clearance was different at different parts of the housing. So the rubber would rub a ton on one side of the housing but not the other. When I cut back on the rubber paddle so it could rotate, there clearance on the other side (the side with the chute) was almost the same as before I put the **** thing on. I think the impeller housing warped over the years slightly? Either way, I took the paddle out and just left the two bolts in.

Will leaving those bolts in do damage to the balance of the impeller at full speed? Or will it be worse to have 2- 3/8 inch holes in one of the impeller fins?

What a pain this was and a let down.
A couple of thoughts on this install: First, a 35 year old snowblower, regardless of make, may have developed some impeller bearing wear; probably was built to a more generous tolerance (for gap) and there may be some structural deformation over time. Mark the impellers, check and record the clearance distance for each blade on each side of the chute. If the numbers are all over the place - the "kit" might not be all that useful. Smaller variations might allow for an "average" setting that should still improve the overall throwing distance/efficiency.
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