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post #1 of 6 Old 03-06-2016, 12:20 AM Thread Starter
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Auger Speed

I have a 4 month old Ariens Deluxe 24 Model 921024 and was wondering how fast should the auger be turning when it is not under load. This is my first Snow Blower so not sure about all of this. I noticed today that mind turns very slowly and sometimes doesn't throw snow as far as it did before. I also noticed that occasionally the right auger seems to just push snow instead of hauling it into the impeller. I checked the shear pin ( i actually removed it and it is not broken) I adjusted the auger control cable to specs and that did not help. Could the belts be stretched due to getting my impeller jammed and stopping my motor abruptly during the last snow storm, but if the belts are stretched and are slipping now and than would this cause both left and right augers to not turn, not just the right one? The right auger is the auger on the right when you are standing in front of the control panel. Any help on this would be appreciated.
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post #2 of 6 Old 03-06-2016, 01:15 AM
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Tighten up the belt. otherwise something could be in a state of confussion up in the gear box.

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post #3 of 6 Old 03-06-2016, 09:23 AM
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My machine is older, but my augers are supposed to turn at about 110 RPM, as I recall. So about 2 revolutions per second.

There is no "valid" reason for the right auger to be turning more slowly than the left auger. Especially if both shear pins are intact (did you remove and check the other side's pin as well?). They are mounted to a single shaft, and the shear pin in each auger is what locks them to the shaft. With intact shear pins, the only way that one could turn more slowly should be if the auger shaft broke.

The shear pins *are* going through the holes in the auger shaft, right? If this has a partial-length auger shaft, then the shaft would not extend all the way through the augers. Perhaps there is a way for the shear pin to not actually be going through the hole in the auger shaft. Like if the augers are installed backwards, or something like that, and the pins are installed beyond where the auger shaft ends.

It's good that you actually removed the shear pin to check it, vs just looking for whether it's present. In some cases, the pin can shear off, but the ends of it can stay stuck to the augers, so it can *look* intact, if you don't remove it.

Shut the engine off, and grab each auger firmly. Can either one be rotated backwards or forwards on the shaft, if you give them a good twist? Neither should be able to move.

How about if you rotate both augers together, in the same direction? It's possible that when you jammed the impeller, you could have damaged the auger gearbox. If you can get both augers to suddenly rotate forward or back, together, with the engine off, then the auger gearbox probably has something broken inside of it.

The belt cannot cause one side to turn more slowly, no. They are driven by a common input. It's possible your belt has stretched tremendously, but it seems unlikely. With the engine off, if you remove the belt cover, you can watch the idler pulley as you squeeze the handle. It should pull tight against the belt.

Further down the list of possible causes, maybe the impeller pulley is slipping on the shaft that drives the impeller & augers. If you jammed the impeller, not the augers, perhaps something failed where the pulley mounts to the shaft. One symptom of this would be that the impeller would also spin slowly, in addition to the augers turning slowly. Again with the engine off, and the auger handle *not* squeezed, you could grab the large impeller pulley (the one on the impeller shaft, not on the engine) and see if feels like it can wiggle on the shaft. I guess you could check the small pulley that mounts to the engine's crankshaft as well.

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Last edited by RedOctobyr; 03-06-2016 at 09:25 AM.
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post #4 of 6 Old 03-06-2016, 10:40 AM
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Excellent post, Red, except for one comment that I have :

Whenever putting your hands inside the snowblower, I think that - not only should you shut off the snowblower, but it is also advisable to remove the plug wire from the spark plug, just in case rotating the shafts happen to start up the machine. While it is unlikely, it is better to be safe than sorry.

Just my $0.02...
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post #5 of 6 Old 03-06-2016, 11:14 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all your suggestions!! I will try and see if I can turn both augers forward or backward as Red said. I also was wondering with the motor off and spark plug wire off I tried turning the impeller and it turns quite easily with a little resistance is this normal? Also I started the blower and clamped down the Auger handle so I could watch the auger turn and I noticed that there is a little side ways movement of the bottom gear box, about a1/4 inch movement back and forth. Is this normal as well? Again sorry for all the questions but like said I am new to using a snowblower.
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post #6 of 6 Old 03-06-2016, 11:39 AM
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RIT333, you're right, the safest approach is to also pull the spark plug wire. Having the throttle in the "off" position, where it shuts down the engine, should also help accomplish the same thing, but yes, pull the plug wire if you want to be sure.

Builder, with the engine off, and spark plug wire pulled:

- If you don't squeeze the handle, the impeller will likely turn with mild resistance if you try and turn it by hand. The reason is that the belt isn't tight around the pulley, so it's not "locking" the pulley to the engine. The only drag you'd feel is from the brake that slows the pulley when you release the handle, if it has a brake, and the belt dragging loosely against the pulley.

- If you *do* have the auger handle squeezed, you should not be able to turn the impeller easily. Or if you can make it turn, the belt should also be trying to make the engine turn at the same time. You'd hear the engine turning. Definitely remove the spark plug wire if trying this test! And honestly, please be *very* careful regardless. In this scenario, with the auger handle squeezed, you'll also be trying to turn the engine. So fighting compression from the engine could make the impeller try and push back against you. Possibly pinching your fingers. Accidents happen, please don't get hurt. If you want to try rotating the impeller like this, it would be better to use a stick/broom handle/etc to reach in and push on the impeller.

Which "bottom" gearbox are you referring to? The one at the middle of the augers? If so, does that gearbox have a bracket or something coming off of it, going to the auger bucket? I don't recall noticing my auger gearbox moving, but it's rare that I watch the augers run while at the front of the machine. And mine machine is older, I don't have the style with a bracket coming off the auger gearbox. That bracket is usually there if you have a partial-length auger shaft, which does not extend all the way from the auger gearbox to the sides of the auger bucket.

I just checked the parts list at
Ariens Order Owners Manuals

It looks like your machine does have a partial-length auger shaft. So definitely make sure that the auger shear pins are actually going through the holes in the auger shaft. It's possible that some sort of assembly issue could cause the shear pin holes in the auger tubes to be located beyond the end of the auger shaft, in which case the shear pins wouldn't do anything.

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