Top Brands/Models to Salvage and Restore - Snowblower Forum : Snow Blower Forums
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post #1 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 10:30 AM Thread Starter
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Top Brands/Models to Salvage and Restore

I recently lost an opportunity to salvage a possibly nice 2008-2012 Husqvarna 1330 blower at my towns transfer station (see husqvarna thread). until receiving a used ariens this Fall, i never owned a blower or cared to. i am a shovel person. but what got my interest is the fact that many manufactured goods get thrown out for minor reasons. a big one is that so many people don't have any background or interest in self-repair.

i just helped a friend save their washing machine. it is a 2005 whirlpool commercial model. in pretty good shape except that for several months the high spin has been failing. all cycles work, but clothes were remaining very wet. so they were hand-wringing and stressing out the dryer. i had not done much washer repair before, and it would not be unreasonable to replace a 15 year old washer that was having a chronic issue.

i did a period of online research, and long story short, decided to replace the clutch. it was a $25 oem part. washer. i watched several youtube tutorials, and did the job. the machine is now spinning nearly dry, and saved $800-$1200 on a new machine and kept this one out of the scrap pile.

so, back to the thread title. not all snow blowers should be salvaged. but i am thinking that it would be good to create a list, by brand, of the models that are most recommended to watch out for. overall desirability, reliability, self-servicabilty, parts availability, historic, etc are factors to consider. there are probably models that would be recommended to drag home just to keep parts in circulation. a lot of new parts are very expensive, undermining the effort to keep older blowers functioning.

i'm new to blowers, so i hope veterans can contribute suggestions based on experience and knowledge. would be a good cheat sheet to keep in the glove box as i drive by the scrap metal pile!

Last edited by rwh963; 12-28-2019 at 10:50 AM.
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post #2 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 10:42 AM
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Both the Yamaha and Hondaís are completely rebuildable, and worth rebuilding. There are other brands and specific models that are being restored by people on this site. Iím more familiar with the Japanese models.

Yamaha tracked 624
Honda tracked 928
Honda Foreman 60Ē plow
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post #3 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 10:44 AM
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There is no such thing, in my opinion, as a cheat sheet.

People that work on and repair snowblowers will grab just about everything, and the majority of people, which discard this stuff, are certainly not going to be bringing any already discarded stuff home.

People like myself, that have the knowledge and the where-with-all to repair many things, like many in this forum, are in my opinion, a very small segment of people. The society of today has a throw away and replace mentality, and most just discard and buy new, or have an item repaired by someone.

The majority in here, already know what there preferences are, and many like me have reached there quota on machines/units to own. But that goes without saying, that coming across a freebie, our addiction to the snowblower would kick in, and we would have to fight the resistance to bring it home Ö.
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post #4 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 10:53 AM
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Look for the following clues: All-steel construction, steel or cast-iron gearbox housings, heavy gauge metal discharge chutes, rod-operated controls, grease fittings on the auger tubes, engine can freely rotate.

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post #5 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 10:57 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oneacer View Post
There is no such thing, in my opinion, as a cheat sheet.

People that work on and repair snowblowers will grab just about everything, and the majority of people, which discard this stuff, are certainly not going to be bringing any already discarded stuff home.

People like myself, that have the knowledge and the where-with-all to repair many things, like many in this forum, are in my opinion, a very small segment of people. The society of today has a throw away and replace mentality, and most just discard and buy new, or have an item repaired by someone.

The majority in here, already know what there preferences are, and many like me have reached there quota on machines/units to own. But that goes without saying, that coming across a freebie, our addiction to the snowblower would kick in, and we would have to fight the resistance to bring it home ….
well, i'm kind of thinking of a hall of fame type list of great blowers that should not be crushed if restorable at low cost (some owners might think a blower is broken if the shear pins snap and the auger no longer functions!). not trying to rescue every rusty broken down blower, but there is probably a create-able list of greatest hits. plus, as mentioned in this thread, many users have specific brand knowledge, but wouldn't know what great models exist in other brands. oneacer seems to love the ariens 10000 model. i had never heard about it until joining this forum.

Last edited by rwh963; 12-28-2019 at 11:14 AM.
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post #6 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 11:01 AM
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i would agree that you can't really make a cheat sheet. you can never really tell what a snowblower needs when you pick it up for free. best thing to look at is just overall condition of the machine. if the metal is solid and not rotting that is a pretty good start since a lot of newer machines rot out. if you want something with thicker metal you are best to look for a older machine. sometimes you have to access the machine and figure out what it will need for parts. if it needs $200+ in parts it would likely become a parts machine to me.

arien 520 snow blower 6.5hp swap
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post #7 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 11:55 AM
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I find the MTD products after 2000 or so sell very well ,are easy to fix and parts are cheap. Ariens from 1980 forward are good sellers and are plentiful for parts. Noma, and Murray and Murray made Craftsman's are great blowers, but parts are hard to source...I end up making my own scraper blades and adapting skids from other manufacturers or welding new metal on the originals ....cables that are broken have to be fabricated from something else or repaired with cable clamps and another piece of cable. Old Ariens I don't play with as they don't sell, and really oddball stuff like Hans Eclipse, Jacobsen and such, I like to play with for the experience ,but not worth it from a business aspect. The MTD products sell so well because they are relatively new when someone gives up on them, while the other more robust blowers are older when junked. Also I should mention that the older Toro blowers are without peer, but the electronic safeties on the machines that are obsolete and the lack of a clutch on some of the models, necessitating finding neutral to stop are a negative. Also the Powershift for whatever reason, doesn't hold its value here in NE, and I think it is one of the best blowers ever made...I pick them up when I find them cheap, then kick myself when they pile up and don't sell.

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post #8 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 12:09 PM
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It seems that the older blowers from the 60-70's were built like tanks and built to last a lifetime plus. I heard the old Ariens are like this and parts are plentiful. They also still command a respectable price.

I picked up a 1973-4 Gilson last year and could not believe how well made they are. There is a facebook group just for them as there are many collectors still around. I would add one to a museum.

During the off season you can pick up a LOT of free snowblowers and you will see what the junk is and what is not. If you can get a Yamaha ......grab it. Very well made. See the occasional Noma. Some of these brands do not have a very good resale value because most people don't know about them. It's mainly the die hard collector that would want some of these.

a word of caution........if you start doing this , you may get hooked and you will have to join the ever growing group SA ( snowblowers anonymous ) which meets every summer in Reno Nevada around the 21st of June.

good luck.

"It Feels Like Beer O'Clock "
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post #9 of 20 Old 12-28-2019, 01:15 PM
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A Yamaha or Honda in good shape is a slam dunk. I have refrained! I was offered an YS828 Yamaha for a good price but had to place to put it (and it was a very hard used machine as he did road clearance with it)

Agreed its worth a look but also a judgment call as it if its worth putting money into as sometimes the failures just cascade and better off with a newer and in some cases better unit for same or lower cost and less mucking about. We got the washer and dryer with the house and they were 15 years old or more. Pushing 20 years when we had problems.

Off topic a bit but some years back my wife wiped out the cloths washer. She does fabric work and felted the drum to the body. I got it cleaned out after I realized that neat film was not normal, never could get it to settle down for a fill.

Lo and behold, Fisher Paykel out of Australia built washers for the Aussie and New Zealanders that did not do that (yep, all them thar sheep). So, if she is just going to do this again, how about getting the bullet proof unit? During the crisis (money was an issue though we have built up a slush fund for that stuff now) the dryer quits, easily fixed via a timer but she wanted the set (and she has been great about not asking for much so......)


Then they both had issues. Dryer rollers went bad, but they were designed to be worked on, a couple of U Tubes and noises and the worst part was getting them out of the Alcove.


Now the Washer had a clear water issue but also another temp one that not conforming to any diagnosis, so it was a search and find out mission. Also nice it has a diagnostician setup you can select functions and test which showed the one valve bad, but no explain the no pump out issue as the pump worked (actually it was a special reuse water cycle)



So I have the thing opened up and upside down and sideways and the one part replaced and looking up the tubes and its, hmm, shiny thing in the valve area but its a bit far up and I have not seen that color on any of the parts lists (valve diverter itself bright orange) . You know, it looks more like a dime than anything.



So I fished up and it was a dime. How the **** a dime got in there let alone in that location is beyond me, but there it was. That allowed it to do the special pump part and progress to the next part of the wash cycle.

We have had them for 18 years or more and still going good.

1998 YT624 Have Owners and Service Manual, Rubber Disc Drive (not hydrostatic)
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post #10 of 20 Old 12-29-2019, 12:36 AM
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There is no doubt a certain satisfaction in resurrecting something worth resurrecting. But when the OCD Psychosis sets in and you canít pass up another junker to add to the pile...just go get some help...

Yamaha tracked 624
Honda tracked 928
Honda Foreman 60Ē plow
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