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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My first post- been reading this forum and found some great info!

I've had my HS928TAS for 10 years and it's been as reliable as ****. I have a driveway that has a big hill and has slopes at different angles so I thought maybe my driveway was the cause of the catching and dragging that so many people have posted here about. I've carefully adjusted the rear skids and scraper bar many times.

However when I place my blower in my garage (level floor) I've noticed the one side of the auger/auger housing is definitely lower that the other when the tracks are level on the ground (in the mid/high auger position). So what happens is if I level the skids so that the auger has the same clearance from the ground, the tracks don't sit evenly… putting lots of weight (and drag) on the lower end.

So I've compromised my adjustments a bit and adjusted the skids on the low side so I have the correct amount of auger clearance… but allowed for more clearance for the other side to help the tracks run smooth/flat on the ground. Correspondingly I have to lower the scraper bar quite a bit lower on the "higher" side. I'd say the difference is about 3/8" or so. Maybe not a huge amount but enough to cause problems.

Anyone else ever run into this situation? As far as I can tell the housing has no adjustments and I haven't removed it to try. Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Oh and I just yesterday installed the Honda side skids due to recommendations on this forum and elsewhere! Haven't tried them yet. Should I remove the rear skids? I've heard mixed feedback on that.
 

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Dave - It sounds like your scraper bar might not be level which is why you're having a tough time getting the skid shoes level with the scraper bar.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks Freezn. The first thing I try to adjust is the auger height. I make sure the scraper bar is high as it can be and out of the way till the last step.

With the skids not touching on either side, with the scraper bar out of the way, the housing/auger on the right side is noticeably lower than the left with the blower/tracks level on the ground. It's like the auger/auger housing is rotated/indexed wrong on the blower frame or something. :confused:

To get the min auger height on the right side, and for the tracks to ride relatively level the skid/scraper on the left side have to be dropped a bunch more than the left. I wish I could get pics to show this but hopefully I'm making sense.
 

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I know exactly what your saying. I think my housing may be cocked also. Not uneven as your is, but tilted down, as if I had the height adj in the lowest position. I have to put mine in the highest position to keep tracks level with the driveway surface. But, the previous owner of my machine had a stone driveway and really pitted and chewed up the impeller housing. So much so that I think it has cocked the whole housing. But, I'm satisfied with the adj now. It is fine. Just need to put shoes on the housing instead of the shoes behind the housing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I know exactly what your saying. I think my housing may be cocked also. Not uneven as your is, but tilted down, as if I had the height adj in the lowest position. I have to put mine in the highest position to keep tracks level with the driveway surface. But, the previous owner of my machine had a stone driveway and really pitted and chewed up the impeller housing. So much so that I think it has cocked the whole housing. But, I'm satisfied with the adj now. It is fine. Just need to put shoes on the housing instead of the shoes behind the housing.
Yeah mine was like this from the day I bought it. I thought it was just a common behavior on track drives (dragging, jumping). Unfortunately it makes it a little tricky to set up as the auger housing/auger aren't parallel so to speak with the tracks! If I set it up by spacing the auger/skids evenly then the tracks are "off" a bit.

The best thing I've figured, as I mentioned, is to adjust the skid on the "low" side to get me the correct clearance…. then adjust everything else so that the tracks are level and the scraper skids have the correct clearance from the ground. On the "high" side the skids/scraper are extended a bunch more so it moves smoothly. After 10 years I don't think going back to the dealer makes sense. ;)
 

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Yeah mine was like this from the day I bought it. I thought it was just a common behavior on track drives (dragging, jumping). Unfortunately it makes it a little tricky to set up as the auger housing/auger aren't parallel so to speak with the tracks! If I set it up by spacing the auger/skids evenly then the tracks are "off" a bit.

The best thing I've figured, as I mentioned, is to adjust the skid on the "low" side to get me the correct clearance…. then adjust everything else so that the tracks are level and the scraper skids have the correct clearance from the ground. On the "high" side the skids/scraper are extended a bunch more so it moves smoothly. After 10 years I don't think going back to the dealer makes sense. ;)
Your machine was cocked from day 1 ??? I swear that somewhere, I don't remember where, I saw, read where Honda had some blower housing that were made wrong from the mfg, and those machines were available for a replacement housing from Honda. BUT, I can't find that literature anywhere, maybe it was a dream. Hope I'm not dreaming about my Honda.

For me, to keep tracks flat on the ground. I have to put my machine in the high position, then lower the shoes and scraper bar to a nice height for clearance. I have done this, remove the scraper bar and the shoes, try to put the height at the middle position and the housing scraps very bad on the blacktop..more like a rototiller then a blower. this is without shoes or scraper bar,,,,,bare housing metal hitting the ground, of course this is unacceptable.
 

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Dave - Sorry I can't be of more help. I have a wheeled Honda, so I'm not too familiar with leveling the auger bucket and track height. Let me take a look at the shop manual and see if I can stumble across some useful info.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Your machine was cocked from day 1 ??? I swear that somewhere, I don't remember where, I saw, read where Honda had some blower housing that were made wrong from the mfg, and those machines were available for a replacement housing from Honda. BUT, I can't find that literature anywhere, maybe it was a dream. Hope I'm not dreaming about my Honda.

For me, to keep tracks flat on the ground. I have to put my machine in the high position, then lower the shoes and scraper bar to a nice height for clearance. I have done this, remove the scraper bar and the shoes, try to put the height at the middle position and the housing scraps very bad on the blacktop..more like a rototiller then a blower. this is without shoes or scraper bar,,,,,bare housing metal hitting the ground, of course this is unacceptable.
Wow… I'd love to know if Honda did have some kind of defective housings! I'll do more searching on this.

As far as the housing scraping- I can see that for sure. I'd expect that. What I would also expect is that if you set the machine in the high position- that the bottom of the housing should be close to parallel with the ground. :) Hence when you set if up for the mid position the skids and scraper should be close to set up the same side to side. Mine isn't. :(

I think I recall the dealer insisting my blower was set up correctly… at the time I just didn't know any better… and I was able to adjust it so it was mostly fine. Just bugs me still!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Oh my… look what I found on another forum:

" My 1132 is about 3 years old. When I first got it, same issue you're having. Pull to the right. I called my local guy and he said, "Is it always to the right?" It turns out that there were several units made in which the entire housing was misaligned. Apparantly they weren't confirming the alignment when the two main pieces of the housing were coupled. (Honda states that this part was subcontracted.) This is a $1000 part. The dealer picked up the machine and installed a new housing under warranty…….
The key to noticing if this is your problem is that despite the fact you've setup the machine, per the manual, as you rock it forward from the highest position, take notice of which side of the housing contracts the ground first. If it's the right, by an inch or so, you've got a defective housing. Now, getting your dealer to honor this is another challenge."

Amazingly… it's the right side of mine that is the low side. Now what to do???
 

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My first post- been reading this forum and found some great info!

I've had my HS928TAS for 10 years and it's been as reliable as ****. I have a driveway that has a big hill and has slopes at different angles so I thought maybe my driveway was the cause of the catching and dragging that so many people have posted here about. I've carefully adjusted the rear skids and scraper bar many times.

However when I place my blower in my garage (level floor) I've noticed the one side of the auger/auger housing is definitely lower that the other when the tracks are level on the ground (in the mid/high auger position). So what happens is if I level the skids so that the auger has the same clearance from the ground, the tracks don't sit evenly… putting lots of weight (and drag) on the lower end.

So I've compromised my adjustments a bit and adjusted the skids on the low side so I have the correct amount of auger clearance… but allowed for more clearance for the other side to help the tracks run smooth/flat on the ground. Correspondingly I have to lower the scraper bar quite a bit lower on the "higher" side. I'd say the difference is about 3/8" or so. Maybe not a huge amount but enough to cause problems.

Anyone else ever run into this situation? As far as I can tell the housing has no adjustments and I haven't removed it to try. Thanks!
Yes Honda did make a couple thousand auger housings that were twisted.
They were subcontracted out, built by another company.
I think they were made in Canada, I'm not sure.
I used to be a "Power Pro" technician for American Honda back in the 90's early 2000's.
I had noticed the problem with the 828 models and brought it to the attention of my district service representative. I went into extreme detail of the problem and what was the cause of it.
About 6 months later he got back to me about it, he took it up with the engineering department, and they realized the problem and had to make adjustments with the fabricating "jig" to align the parts correctly during assembly.
I also have a cocked auger housing on my 828 snowblower. I asked Honda if they would replace my housing since I worked at a Honda Power Equipment dealership at the time, and he told me that Honda would not replace my housing because my snowblower was out of warrenty. That upset me quite a bit because I was the technician who alerted them in much technical detail of the problem, and I also worked for a Honda dealership at the time.
Honda said "No" because of the cost of the part, if I had a newer snowblower, they would have made good on it.
Almost every model 2 stage snowblower model is subject to the cocked auger housing, but not every one has a bad housing.
Many were made with a bad part and many got through quality control and were shipped that way, until they realized the problem and made a "fix", meaning a non cocked housing.
It happens every year with many different products, not only Honda.
I hope this will be of some help to you.
I used to have the service bulletin about the problem back in the 90's, but I don't have it anymore.
 

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Yes Honda did make a couple thousand auger housings that were twisted.
They were subcontracted out, built by another company.
I think they were made in Canada, I'm not sure.
I used to be a "Power Pro" technician for American Honda back in the 90's early 2000's.
I had noticed the problem with the 828 models and brought it to the attention of my district service representative. I went into extreme detail of the problem and what was the cause of it.
About 6 months later he got back to me about it, he took it up with the engineering department, and they realized the problem and had to make adjustments with the fabricating "jig" to align the parts correctly during assembly.
I also have a cocked auger housing on my 828 snowblower. I asked Honda if they would replace my housing since I worked at a Honda Power Equipment dealership at the time, and he told me that Honda would not replace my housing because my snowblower was out of warrenty. That upset me quite a bit because I was the technician who alerted them in much technical detail of the problem, and I also worked for a Honda dealership at the time.
Honda said "No" because of the cost of the part, if I had a newer snowblower, they would have made good on it.
Almost every model 2 stage snowblower model is subject to the cocked auger housing, but not every one has a bad housing.
Many were made with a bad part and many got through quality control and were shipped that way, until they realized the problem and made a "fix", meaning a non cocked housing.
It happens every year with many different products, not only Honda.
I hope this will be of some help to you.
I used to have the service bulletin about the problem back in the 90's, but I don't have it anymore.
The same housings were used on both the wheel and track drive models.
They had problems originally starting with the 624 models all the way up through the 1132's.
That happens in a fast paced production shop, unfortunately mistakes are made and it takes how long for the problem to be noticed, a quality control issue.
 

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Can we assume that on the production line when installed you could get one with the "slop" in the bolt hole to stud/bolt you could get a straighter auger or a less straight auger do to bolt hole to stud/bolt location while cinching up the nut? So if you have one of these screwed up models, time to loosen up the auger and turn the twist out as far as you can and re tighten the nuts.
 

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I recently restored what I believe was once a landscaper's machine...ridden hard & put away wet. It's a Toro 824 so the only similarities between yours and my machine is that they're both RED. :)

My machine handled poorly. It was impossible to set the skids & scraper; 1 side was about 1/2" higher than the other I assume from something being caught-up in the impeller...even when trying to loosen bolts & take advantage of any slop (very little).

I ground-off all of the welds and was easily able to correct the twist with a few "precision" slugs with a small sledge.

It's pretty ambitious but I'm glad that I did it; machine handles beautifully now.





it only took 3/16" of rotation to correct the twist:




 

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Dave - Do you think there would be any improvement if you removed the rear bucket skids (assuming you have rear bucket skids right now) and upgraded to Honda Commercial Side Skids or Armor Side Skids? I'm seriously thinking about making the switch myself. At the very least, adding the Honda Commercial Side Skids and raising the rear bucket skids just slightly off the ground. Rich
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Dave - Do you think there would be any improvement if you removed the rear bucket skids (assuming you have rear bucket skids right now) and upgraded to Honda Commercial Side Skids or Armor Side Skids? I'm seriously thinking about making the switch myself. At the very least, adding the Honda Commercial Side Skids and raising the rear bucket skids just slightly off the ground. Rich
Ironically, I just installed the side skids for this reason. That is how I noticed just how off my auger housing was. My left side front skid is quite a bit low. But I haven't tested it yet… fortunately, or unfortunately, we have lots of snow coming this week end so I'll get to see. I did give it a quick spin around my driveway and it seems good… but my driveway now has a fair amount of packed snow/ice on it now.

I think they will work good. FWIW here is how I adjusted them with my "modified/tilted" housing: Loosen and raise all skids and scraper. I set the snow blower in the middle position. Set a spacer under the auger to make sure I have 3/8" spacing on the "low"/right side. Adjust the right skids and tighten to maintain that spacing… leaving the left skids loose for the time being. Remove the spacer. Now is the tricky part. At this point the blower is wobbly and will easily dip/drop to the front left. I try to find the correct lift of the left skids to keep the blower tracks even/flat on both sides. The idea is that is if the blower is on level ground there needs to be a good balance and weight on the skids/tracks. Because of the screwed up housing- there is NO WAY to set the auger/auger housing with the spacer for proper clearance without screwing up the way the tracks sit. So I adjust the left skids so the blower seems to sit level and flat. This will result in the left skids being much lower (in my case). Ideally you would want a good balance of weight on the left/right tracks and the left/right skids. Finding this balance is done by feel…. I can't see any easy way to do it.

With my housing cocked to the right… the resultant set up has the auger/auger clearance about 1/2" higher on the left side. I then set up the scraper to be about 1/8" spacer all across the entire bottom… and again, because of the housing, the scraper will be adjusted much lower in the housing on the left side than the right.

I hope I'm being clear because in reality it's pretty simple to visualize. Oh and for now… I have the rear skids in too… I might take them off depending on how it works this weekend. FWIW- I basically did a similar thing with just the rear skids the last several years… but I was always wondering why the heck doing it by the book didn't seem right. My dealer just kept telling me I was doing it wrong… nice huh?

Oh Freezn- I'm guessing that the housing issue causes more of an issue with the tracks than with the wheeled version. But I can see similar challenges to some extent…
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I recently restored what I believe was once a landscaper's machine...ridden hard & put away wet. It's a Toro 824 so the only similarities between yours and my machine is that they're both RED. :)

My machine handled poorly. It was impossible to set the skids & scraper; 1 side was about 1/2" higher than the other I assume from something being caught-up in the impeller...even when trying to loosen bolts & take advantage of any slop (very little).

I ground-off all of the welds and was easily able to correct the twist with a few "precision" slugs with a small sledge.

It's pretty ambitious but I'm glad that I did it; machine handles beautifully now.
Very impressive… and I'm sure a similar approach would work on mine as well- seems like the same exact issue. I just wish I was that handy!! Nicely done.

Unfortunately I'll just has to live with this the best I can… just like my aging back! LOL
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Can we assume that on the production line when installed you could get one with the "slop" in the bolt hole to stud/bolt you could get a straighter auger or a less straight auger do to bolt hole to stud/bolt location while cinching up the nut? So if you have one of these screwed up models, time to loosen up the auger and turn the twist out as far as you can and re tighten the nuts.
I can't see how this could work- the mounting of the housing the frame is square, can't tweak the rotation. The front of the auger housing is tac welded to the round tunnel-like part of the housing so no adjustment there either.
 
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