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post #1 of 31 Old 11-23-2019, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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What is the best?

I know you guys get asked this a lot. I want something that can handle Michigan winters. I live on a busy street and the snowplow guy always makes sure to shove as much heavy snow at the end of my drive as possible.

The machine HAS to have hydraulic trans -- no gear/clutch set up. I'm okay with wheels because my drive doesn't have much incline and is paved. Track drive is fine, just not essential.

I'm a bit partial to Honda, but I'm not sure the new ones are made as well as they used to make them. Honda is also expensive, which isn't a deal breaker, but a concern.

What machine would you recommend?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 31 Old 11-23-2019, 05:41 PM
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Well, I'd argue some of your requirements . . . 50+ years in the Upper Peninsula with Ariens with "normal" drive and up to 400" a year, and zero problems. To me, hydro drive may be nice, but I have never felt any need or desire to have it - seems like just something else to run the price up and possibly have an expensive failure. 55th year, just bought the third blower, changed 1 or 2 drive discs max . . . used by two families, and typically 3 to 4 driveways, many days a week. (Read:They hold up fine!)

Ariens does have hydro models, though, if you are adamant about throwing money down that hole.
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post #3 of 31 Old 11-23-2019, 05:49 PM
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I would go with an Ariens and the rubber disc tranny without EFI
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post #4 of 31 Old 11-23-2019, 07:11 PM
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If you are 100% set on a hydro, no turning back, then:
HSS1332AT / HSS1332ATD Honda's are nice and will get the job done. The Ariens Pro 28" Hydro MODEL NUMBER 926060 with the Briggs 420cc is also very nice. All are hydro's and all will do a great job. The only way I'd spend that kind of money is with a full line dealer, so there's your dinner.

2016 Ariens Professional 28
2017 Toro Power Clear 721R
2018 Simplicity Select 1024
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post #5 of 31 Old 11-23-2019, 11:30 PM
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Garage
I once desired a hydro Honda. Turns out I have been super impressed with a decade old disc drive Ariens. Just today I simply bombed it into a pile of snow on a deck that came off the roof 2 days ago and since froze. Went through it like a trooper, throws snow really well. The disc drive holds well enough to run it up and down atv ramps in and out of my truck. Most of all get the highest power for your chosen size. 1332 Honda would be awesome but the price... Not willing to go there since there are tons of old disc drive machines that work flawlessly for decades and can be had for much less.

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post #6 of 31 Old 11-23-2019, 11:45 PM
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You need torque and more horsepower gives you that.
The Toro 1428 OXE with the patented no clog system would be more than adequate for what you need for less money or purchase two of them having one as a spare for that kind of money.
Having a set of chains is a good thing too.

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post #7 of 31 Old 11-24-2019, 05:44 AM
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It is a good and hard Question

For me I made a list of need to have and nice to have

needs:
handle warmers (I have had so cold hands that I have had issues with unlocking the door when done)
max width below 30" to be able to get through a door to my workshop (yes it should be rebuilt with a bigger door)
high HP/clearing width ratio (to throw snow further away)
lights
reliability and easy to obtain spare parts

wants
variable speed drive
tracks


In the end I got an Ariens Pro 28 - on wheels and disc driven
The need for reliability and spare parts outweighed the desire for variable speed. In worst case i can get an oem disc within 30 km for less than US30$ instead of waiting X days/weeks for parts. And yes $800 in price difference had a part in it too

The classic tracks cant climb the stairs in my garden and the rapidtrack was about US1800$ more expensive so I decided that it was way to much for a nice to have

The stock light - well lets just say that a 12 year old worn out Stiga is better so some "saved" money will be used to fix that issue

“A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.”
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post #8 of 31 Old 11-24-2019, 06:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mats View Post
It is a good and hard Question

For me I made a list of need to have and nice to have

needs:
handle warmers (I have had so cold hands that I have had issues with unlocking the door when done)
max width below 30" to be able to get through a door to my workshop (yes it should be rebuilt with a bigger door)
high HP/clearing width ratio (to throw snow further away)
lights
reliability and easy to obtain spare parts

wants
variable speed drive
tracks


In the end I got an Ariens Pro 28 - on wheels and disc driven
The need for reliability and spare parts outweighed the desire for variable speed. In worst case i can get an oem disc within 30 km for less than US30$ instead of waiting X days/weeks for parts. And yes $800 in price difference had a part in it too

The classic tracks cant climb the stairs in my garden and the rapidtrack was about US1800$ more expensive so I decided that it was way to much for a nice to have

The stock light - well lets just say that a 12 year old worn out Stiga is better so some "saved" money will be used to fix that issue
Hey nice purchase, that's what I have!! I agree with everything you said. The OP however really wants a hydro and as he said "Honda is also expensive, which isn't a deal breaker, but a concern." So I figure he's got deep pockets which is great!
Enjoy your Ariens Pro 28 you made an excellent choice. Oh, BTW here's a pic of my PRO 28"
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2016 Ariens Professional 28
2017 Toro Power Clear 721R
2018 Simplicity Select 1024
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post #9 of 31 Old 11-24-2019, 06:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leonz View Post
You need torque and more horsepower gives you that.
The Toro 1428 OXE with the patented no clog system would be more than adequate for what you need for less money or purchase two of them having one as a spare for that kind of money.
Having a set of chains is a good thing too.
I'd like to shop at your dealer. Power Max® HD 1428 OHXE Commercial (38843) 2 x $2599.99 at my dealer is $5199.98 and I might get a small discount for cash. The Honda's and Ariens come in a couple of thousand less.
I like the Toro but the OP says must have hydro and it's his $$ so lets spend it!

2016 Ariens Professional 28
2017 Toro Power Clear 721R
2018 Simplicity Select 1024
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post #10 of 31 Old 11-24-2019, 08:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zavie View Post
If you are 100% set on a hydro, no turning back, then:
HSS1332AT / HSS1332ATD Honda's are nice and will get the job done. The Ariens Pro 28" Hydro MODEL NUMBER 926060 with the Briggs 420cc is also very nice. All are hydro's and all will do a great job. The only way I'd spend that kind of money is with a full line dealer, so there's your dinner.
dealer!! the magic word,
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