Impeller Kit: Craftsman 88173? - Snowblower Forum : Snow Blower Forums
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post #1 of 12 Old 01-09-2017, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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Impeller Kit: Craftsman 88173?

I've read many postings here on impeller kits and did considerable research elsewhere. Now I'm trying to figure out whether an impeller kit is worthwhile for my Craftsman 88173, purchased 12/2014. Like anyone interested in impeller kits, I'm less than enthusiastic on my current snow thrower's ability to throw snow (around 20 feet) compared to others I've owned.

My 88173 has an impeller gap of 5/8". For some reason this seems to be the cutoff point where impeller kits cease to be effective: 1/4"-5/8" kits are effective; 5/8" and over kits are not effective. I'm hopeful someone can tell me whether the kit would be effective for a Craftsman 88173, a popular machine. Beyond that, perhaps someone can explain to me why over 5/8' is OK and under 5/8" is a problem.

This is my first post and I'd like to thank everyone in advance.
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post #2 of 12 Old 01-09-2017, 05:58 PM
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You may have worded it wrong. The bigger the gap, the more effective the kit will be. You should do it. You'll be impressed.
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post #3 of 12 Old 01-09-2017, 06:01 PM
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I think they mentioned ⅝" as the upper limit only because they couldn't imagine anyone having a gap larger than that !

A ⅝" gap at the ends of your impeller blades is enormous !

The word "kit" is thrown around loosely; but you can actually buy your own nuts and bolts and washers and reinforced rubber . . . . and make your own so-called "kit".
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post #4 of 12 Old 01-09-2017, 06:11 PM
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My Jacobsen had a 3/8 gap...and really sucked in wet snow. I only did two of the four blades and tried her out on the same patch of snow and was amazed at the difference. I did her sister Jacobsen with all four blades, and didn't miss a beat on the last storm. My neighbor across the street wanted to know what I did to make such a difference. I'll bet he was secretly mocking me when I was clogging!
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post #5 of 12 Old 01-09-2017, 11:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cranman View Post
My Jacobsen had a 3/8 gap...and really sucked in wet snow. I only did two of the four blades and tried her out on the same patch of snow and was amazed at the difference. I did her sister Jacobsen with all four blades, and didn't miss a beat on the last storm. My neighbor across the street wanted to know what I did to make such a difference. I'll bet he was secretly mocking me when I was clogging!
Very cool. Did you notice any difference between the 2-blade mod vs the 4-blade mod?

My machine:
1979 Ariens 924039 (24", 8hp w/ differential)
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post #6 of 12 Old 01-10-2017, 04:51 AM
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hello tony, welcome to SBF!! I can't remember anyone on the board doing an impeller kit and not seeing an improvement in the throwing distance of their machine

current machines
1-toro2450E-38419. 1-toro3000E-38435. 1-toro 3650E-38445
2-toro 521E-38052. 1-toro xl824pt 38086
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post #7 of 12 Old 01-10-2017, 08:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vermont007 View Post
I think they mentioned ⅝" as the upper limit only because they couldn't imagine anyone having a gap larger than that !

A ⅝" gap at the ends of your impeller blades is enormous !

The word "kit" is thrown around loosely; but you can actually buy your own nuts and bolts and washers and reinforced rubber . . . . and make your own so-called "kit".
see snow blowers from about 1985 and earlier i bet they were 1/2" and even some larger.

Toro snow commander 7hp RTEK ...honda HS720 GC190 OHC
Toro ccr3650 6.5hp RTEK ....Ariens sno-tek 26" 208cc LCT
Ariens st824 924082 HMSK 80 ....Ariens path pro 136cc
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post #8 of 12 Old 01-10-2017, 10:27 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks to all for your help. The kits do seem to be very expensive. In fact, when I started looking I thought the price of one blade kit was the price for the entire impeller. I'd prefer to make it myself but I'm finding rubber skirtboard to be SBR which concerns me because of its less than stellar resistance to petro-based chemicals (I spray my snow thrower to reduce snow accumulation.) and salt. Instead, I came across 3/8" neoprene (unable to include a link, specs below) and would like to know if anyone thinks it could do the job:

Neoprene Specs:

Min. Temp. (F): -30

Max. Temp. (F): 225

Durometer: 70A

Elongation: 200%

Tensile Strength (PSI): 1500

Also, are there other rubber materials I should be considering?

Last edited by Tony P.; 01-10-2017 at 10:31 AM.
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post #9 of 12 Old 01-10-2017, 10:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony P. View Post
Thanks to all for your help. The kits do seem to be very expensive. In fact, when I started looking I thought the price of one blade kit was the price for the entire impeller. I'd prefer to make it myself but I'm finding rubber skirtboard to be SBR which concerns me because of its less than stellar resistance to petro-based chemicals (I spray my snow thrower to reduce snow accumulation.) and salt. Instead, I came across this 3/8" neoprene (unable to include a link) and would like to know if anyone thinks it could do the job:



Also, are there other rubber materials I should be considering?
When I did it on an old machine I had just changed the tires on it... So I cut out sections of sidewall and used that. It has the appropriate strength and stiffness.
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post #10 of 12 Old 01-10-2017, 10:34 AM
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to SBF Tony


I think you'd be happy with the improvement.

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Make sure the windows are up before the snow plow goes by !!

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