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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Guys -

I'm in Billings, Mt and we just got 15" of snow dumped on us, and very cold.

I just bought my first two-stage snowbloer this Summer, a Toro Powermax 6000, and it's an awesome machine.

My big brother bought a brand new Cub cadet at Depot, and it throws snow no better than my decade-old Toro.

My blower has power to spare, but how do you keep them from wanting to climb up the side of berms instead of digging into them?

On drifted, or fallen snow it has no problem, but those packed berms are work to get through, but it does do it if I do my part.

I was thinking about maybe 20-30 pounds of weight on the front - anybody ever tried it?

Or better suggestions maybe?
 

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This older snowblower doesn't have any auto-turn, and it's a little better if I take a pass on a berm in parallel to it and 'square up' the edge, and granny low gear helps too, but it'd be nice if I could keep it's nose down more!
 

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I have a 24" Ariens, when I bought it, it had a 20-lb (I think) bar bolted to the front of the bucket. It was a counterweight for the Ariens cab that the previous owner was using. I sold the cab, but kept the weight on the front. It's helped keep the nose down somewhat while climbing my driveway's incline.

Last year I added another 5 lbs to the front, and liked the improvement. So yes, I'd definitely try adding some weight to the front of the bucket, and see if it helps.

I think people have said that the tracked machines do well at not simply climbing up snowbanks, and instead driving into them. But I don't have tracks, and that's not really the sort of thing you can just retrofit.

You could also try maybe kind of breaking up the snow with a metal shovel or something, just to help loosen it. Not move it yourself, just to break up some of the chunks. Other than that, use a slow forward speed, and hope it can chew the stuff up.

I think some of the older (60's?) machines had augers that stuck out beyond the bucket. It seems to me like that design would be better for chewing through snowbanks, as the augers would be the first thing to contact it (not the bucket). But I suspect that safety concerns, and damaging fences, etc, is probably why that's no longer done.
 

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If you haven't tried a Powershift Toro.......you might want to.....for the EOD piles.....they are magic.....right Todd?
 

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During the winter I use a number of different snowblowers as I fix, recondition, and sell them. I like to try everyone out before I sell them and during a snow I may use 5.

For this year I decided to build a wooden box to hold a 20 lb lead brick that lies on top of the auger housing. It's held on by a bungee cord that goes through slots in the box so it's easily moved from blower to blower. We haven't had sufficient snow yet for me to try it out.
 

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I've experienced the same phenomenon with both the Toros and MTD I've owned. However, it is usually only when making the initial pass through the berm. I just have a metal shovel handy to break it up a bit and then move it out of the way. Afterwards, I usually only take about 25 -50% of the bucket width and go slow. That and a good set of drift cutters does the trick. HTH.
 

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Some helpful hints. Get them as quickly as possible so they don't have time to freeze. S!owed speed. Half a cut or less to begin. Add weight if you feel it will help. Anything will work.
 

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idk why they dont design the augers too spin in the other direction, it would help in keeping the bucket down using the downforce the augers would give, as theyre deigned now they will naturally climb up a hardened snow bank
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Good suggestions guys!

I won't be as lazy next time, and I'll chop them with a shovel a little.

As far as getting them right away, that is good advice too I think.
 

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I have a 28" Ariens and a two car driveway that has parked cars on the right. So I get a 5' x 30' berm where the city plows swing around the parked cars. A couple of years ago I looked at the Ariens weights but I just couldn't bear spending $100 each for a weight. I measured the width on my unit and then got 4" x XX x 3/8" bar stock from the local metal house I drilled the holes and sanded them with an orbital sander to clean off the slag. Prime and two coats of Chevy engine block orange and I have weights. I use to bars stacked on the front and it makes a nice hold down.

Does it fix every thing? No, but it helps. The stuff is fairly heavy, so I'm thinking of added impeller extenders to help keep the shut clean.

I plow a width straight down the middle and then whittle it down to the left and to the right. I don't have much space to throw the stuff, so I just stack it in big piles on either side. In my case I have about 100' of no parking zone to the left. If I'm out there before they come back to do the trim work, I'll actually clean the street back to the curve so the city plows don't come back and plow me back in.

Basically something like this;
https://www.fastenal.com/products/details/0953258;jsessionid=2cVWNDujTajc349BgKyThgiJ.443d7b2e-1555-3602-a586-c0d73327934b?r=~|categoryl1:"600930 Raw Materials"|~ ~|categoryl2:"600932 Bar Stock"|~ ~|categoryl3:"600933 Flat Bar Stock"|~

But it was much cheaper from a local supplier.

I make four of them and use two on the 28". I have another 24" that I have one on but it doesn't do heavy drifts like that so can can't really comment on it. The last one is in the garage awaiting assignment, hahahaha.

PS: Make sure you use self locking nuts and stainless or coated bolts.
 

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The technique that I use to go through EOD 'berm' or even frozen snow banks is to let the machine 'eat' it one bite at a time, pulling the machine back a bit and then going forward into the pile. Each time, if the machine has risen up on the prior bite, it digs deeper on the following bite.

Weights are fine, but that tends to make the machine less agile.

Toro Powershift is particularly designed for this sort of thing.
 

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...people have said that the tracked machines do well at not simply climbing up snowbanks, and instead driving into them. But I don't have tracks, and that's not really the sort of thing you can just retrofit.

You could also try maybe kind of breaking up the snow with a metal shovel or something, just to help loosen it. Not move it yourself, just to break up some of the chunks.
I've only used tracked machines and I can say they still will climb – just not as much as the tire machines, so...in other words trackers are not perfect.

If I did not have a blower that is acceptable at breaking the EOD berm, I would definitely use an ice spud (sometimes called an ice chipper) to break up that set-up snow concrete and ice pack. I have found that a regular steel snow shovel is not good enough...and the plastic shovels will be reduced to scrap if you can get them to break through.

Good advice there RedOctobyr.
 

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I moved the skids to the back of the bucket, that helps a lot. I've been thinking about making my machine, into a Drift Breaker. Maybe next summer, if the BW doesn't object too much.
Sid
 

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If the EOD berm is so bad that you have to resort to breaking it up manually before the blower can further grind it up and send it away, I find few tools that work better for that than an old fashioned long handled mattock. There aren't many berms that can stand up to a few wacks from one of those. I've used one quite a few times before, though mine is not as nice looking as this one.....lol

 
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