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hen I was trying out the Ariens at Lowes I thought the same about the crank that it was weird to have to lean over so far to do so.
I'm in the same position of trying to decide between these models.

As was noted earlier, a more equal comparison would be the Toro 928 with the Ariens Deluxe 28 SHO, which has a larger engine, and runs the 14-inch impeller about 7% faster (than the non-SHO version) leading to a higher tip exit speed. This both clears the area behind the auger faster, and propels the snow at a higher initial speed: = > greater distance.

I wonder how the Toro does this with the smaller engine than the Deluxe SHO version.

There's also the Ariens Platinum 24 SHO. Larger engine still, but same impeller operation. However, it doesn't have that awkward crank position; instead, there's a side-to-side lever on the dashboard to rotate the chute. But there is a cost for this.

Need something to tip the scale . . .
 

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I'm in the same position of trying to decide between these models.

I wonder how the Toro does this with the smaller engine than the Deluxe SHO version.
That was impressive to me in the video I posted earlier. ..
the Toro Power Max 928 OAE threw snow just as far and nearly as fast as a $3,000 Ariens Pro 28 PowerTrak . . . and did it with the smaller 265cc engine.

The key is in the Toro impeller and bucket/impeller chamber design. The Toro is more fuel efficient as well.


That's one thing I liked about my Craftsman 26" . .. . I could fill the tank and usually use it to clear my areas twice before filling the tank again.
 
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If you are even considering one get it. They are incredibly powerful.
Not out of the realm of possibility, although the larger 369 cc engine might be more than I would normally need, and the added weight, and cost, are factors I'm considering. (Weight, because I do have to move it in and out of my storage shed, with a slight ramp up, and also be sure the raised floor can handle it.

In regard to the engine, indeed, I'd much prefer that it be able to keep the rpm and throw distances up when tackling the EOD piles, especially when it the moist, hard-packed type. If that's the real distinction between the 369 cc and the 306 (or 254), that would be significant for me. (For the snow elsewhere on the driveway and walks, I suspect the smaller engines should be just fine, most of the time.) The 24-inch size would also be acceptable -- a few more passes at most, in exchange for manoeuvrability and less storage space requirement.

Tell me/us more . . .

What was impressive to me in the video I posted earlier. .. the Toro Power Max 928 OAE threw snow just as far and nearly as fast as a $3,000 Ariens Pro 28 PowerTrak . . . and did it with the smaller 265cc engine.
Agreed. I found his other video on the 928 throwing 8-inches of rain soaked snow even more impressive -- I'm used to seeing machines (e.g., the one I have now) just pile it up on the bucket housing. In the video he's getting what looks like a 20-foot reach. I haven't yet found videos of other machines focusing on similar conditions. (Maybe there's a reason for that!)

@jranger How are looking at this? Let's compare notes!
 

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Agreed. I found his other video on the 928 throwing 8-inches of rain soaked snow even more impressive -- I'm used to seeing machines (e.g., the one I have now) just pile it up on the bucket housing. In the video he's getting what looks like a 20-foot reach. I haven't yet found videos of other machines focusing on similar conditions. (Maybe there's a reason for that!)
What I like about Paul's videos is that he buys and impartially tests machines from many brands and usually the ones that are available to us as ordinary folk and in a wide price range and size.
He has so many videos and explains what he finds as pluses and minuses if any for each.

I was also considering the Ariens 28" Deluxe for $1,199 or the Toro Power Max 828 for $1,199. I opted for the Toro Power Max HD 928 OAE based on other reviews and the excellent job Paul does showing details of many of the machines.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
[QUOTE="PlOM, post: 1744242, member: 140943"

Agreed. I found his other video on the 928 throwing 8-inches of rain soaked snow even more impressive -- I'm used to seeing machines (e.g., the one I have now) just pile it up on the bucket housing. In the video he's getting what looks like a 20-foot reach. I haven't yet found videos of other machines focusing on similar conditions. (Maybe there's a reason for that!)

@jranger How are looking at this? Let's compare notes!
[/QUOTE]

Wow, just watched that video as well and that just sold it for me. I was already leaning towards the Toro with the chute handle. We get a good amount of lake effect snow and then with addition of the snow plow filling up the end of the drive way that would clog my little YTD machine, this is going to be fantastic.
 

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Wow, just watched that video as well and that just sold it for me. I was already leaning towards the Toro with the chute handle. We get a good amount of lake effect snow and then with addition of the snow plow filling up the end of the drive way that would clog my little YTD machine, this is going to be fantastic.
Paul Simka also has a video or tow of the Toto Power Max 828 OAE that does just about as well as the HD 928. The 928 will throw a bit further, otherwise the 828 does as well even in wet snow. Also it has a chute more like the Ariens single piece one.
If you want a Power Max HD 928 OAE better check around soon. They are not as well stocked as the Power Max 828 OAE.
 

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please don't scream your posts by LARGE BOLD type, or brightly colored type it's not necessary.

please read the do's and don'ts's in the house rules thread
 

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I think people are beating up on the Ariens "fish auger" chute rotation handle just a little more than it deserves to be beat on. True, it's sort of awkward and most of us might design it differently, but it does have some advantages. Advantages being-
1. Far fewer and less expensive parts.
2. Greater leverage to move the chute.
3. Easier to move the chute a small amount so that the discharge clears the house tree, or bird feeder, etc.,
4. The ability to modify the rotate mechanism to increase the total amount of chute rotation.
5. Separation of chute deflector angle from the chute rotation. This may be a good or bad thing, depending on your specific snowblowing situation.
 

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BazookaJoe, I think your points are bang on.

Ice drill style takes a couple of snow events to get used to it. It works very well and will not freeze up.
Like the crank style on my 10000 series, it is lightning fast, and easy to control. I like the simple robust system.

My only experience with stick chute control was a 2010 MTD Gold machine. I hated it, it used cables to move the chute, they would often freeze and I found the control accuracy terrible (often over shooting rotation then would have to adjust left then right).

Toro and Ariens use a metal rod to connect the stick to the chute and should not have the problems I experienced. The Toro Stick control has great reviews, and is probably the best stick control out there, but there are people who are happy with the ice drill style.
 

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4. The ability to modify the rotate mechanism to increase the total amount of chute rotation.
I'm one of those that had concerns about the Deluxe mechanism because when I tried it (showroom) while holding down the "drive" handle, I couldn't reach the crank directly because of the speed selector lever. When in positions 1 - 3, it seemed the handle was in the path my arm would normally follow to reach the crank without shifting my position relative to drive handle and dashboard. No doubt others have adjusted for this, and I probably would as well.

With that in mind, can you expand on, or provide links to, the rotation modification? The same limited swing on my old MTD was an issue, but was remedied with a few more notches in the chute base where the crank spiral is located.
 

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I'm one of those that had concerns about the Deluxe mechanism because when I tried it (showroom) while holding down the "drive" handle, I couldn't reach the crank directly because of the speed selector lever. When in positions 1 - 3, it seemed the handle was in the path my arm would normally follow to reach the crank without shifting my position relative to drive handle and dashboard. No doubt others have adjusted for this, and I probably would as well.
I found the same depending on where the speed selector was. Just awkward a not and good match IMO for the newer auto steer drives as I mention below.

I've had crank version chute adjusts my older machine and the "joy stick" type on both my Cub Cadet and Craftsman. The hand crank chute control worked fine on those one piece solid axle machines even with trigger steering.

To be honest, the crank is fine on the standard old solid axle or trigger steer machines.
To me. . when trying to make chute adjusts in motion on a snow blower with Auto-Steer (or "Auto-turn" ) differential drive - -- the issue is leaning over or reaching for the crank will cause pressure on the hand on the handles and thus have a tendency to turn the machine. Otherwise, the hand crank system would be fine.

The Toro joystick still operates like the Ariens with a shaft driven gear to the chute rotation. It's just more ergonomic IMO, with the stick right there to control with no leaning or reaching for the crank over the handle bars.
 
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I'm one of those that had concerns about the Deluxe mechanism because when I tried it (showroom) while holding down the "drive" handle, I couldn't reach the crank directly because of the speed selector lever. When in positions 1 - 3, it seemed the handle was in the path my arm would normally follow to reach the crank without shifting my position relative to drive handle and dashboard. No doubt others have adjusted for this, and I probably would as well.

With that in mind, can you expand on, or provide links to, the rotation modification? The same limited swing on my old MTD was an issue, but was remedied with a few more notches in the chute base where the crank spiral is located.
You and I think alike- I used to own a Yard Man and I did that same trick of "extra notch at the spiral crank" . After the Yard Man, I owned a Craftsman with the joystick. I missed the extra chute rotation and disliked the joystick in general. The Craftsman joystick on my snowblower didn't allow for precise chute & deflector control. The joystick was good to rapidly move right to left at the end of the driveway, but not much else. If I recall correctly, the chute deflector would creep position as well. The whole joystick probably needed replacement, but it was not an inexpensive part.

To increase the Ariens chute rotation on the machines with the "auger handle"... Remove the black plastic cover at the rotation area. You'll see the chute gear, item #4. Remove that chute gear, taking note of the orientations and positions of the various washers and springs. Take the chute gear to your work area and remove the two stops- just cut them off. And then reassemble it all.
Once it's all back together, the black cover will be crunched when you fully rotate the chute. I gave my cover a bit of a haircut and then it's all good. Also, I added rubber bumpers so that the chute doesn't hit steel on steel with the chute support. One last thing, I rerouted the chute deflector cable so that it would flex more happily.

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To increase the Ariens chute rotation on the machines with the "auger handle"...
Thanks for the detailed how-to". I do like the deflection range in the first photo -- much the same as I have on the MTD now.

I'm also looking at the Platinum 24, and the rotation range would be a consideration with it as well.

The Platinum uses a different gear arrangement.
plat chute gear.jpg

In this case, although the horizontal chute rotation gear also has the same limiting stops underneath as on the Deluxe, the vertical "actuation" gear has less range. I'll have to see if there's still available teeth on the actuation gear, and also room in the dashboard slot for the control lever, to allow further movement of the chute with the stops modified. (I wonder if the Toro could also be modified in some way to provide a few more degrees of rotation with the Quick Stick.)
 

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Nearest, rather than furthest throw distance.

Many of the reviews and promotional materials for blowers stress long throw distance, and that is a factor for me as well. However, so is the minimum distance. Ariens' website specs (Deluxe) indicate a range 3 - 55 feet. On one side of my driveway there's not more than 5 feet of space. Visually, the Ariens deflector doesn't seem to go low enough to achieve this, especially as the engine speed is either full run or idle -- there's no option to slow it down a bit to reduce the throw distance. What's the nearest others have actually experienced? Is 3 feet realistic when directing the snow sideways to the direction of the blower?
 

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Nearest, rather than furthest throw distance.

Many of the reviews and promotional materials for blowers stress long throw distance, and that is a factor for me as well. However, so is the minimum distance. Ariens' website specs (Deluxe) indicate a range 3 - 55 feet. On one side of my driveway there's not more than 5 feet of space. Visually, the Ariens deflector doesn't seem to go low enough to achieve this, especially as the engine speed is either full run or idle -- there's no option to slow it down a bit to reduce the throw distance. What's the nearest others have actually experienced? Is 3 feet realistic when directing the snow sideways to the direction of the blower?
The minimum discharge distance will depend on the adjustment of the cable threaded end (by the #3 box) where it attaches to item #1. If that adjustment isn't enough to do the job for you, it wouldn't be too difficult to fabricate a little insert which you'd place inside the upper right corner of item #1 to snug things up a little more. Of course, keep in mind that anything you do to reduce the minimum distance will at some point, reduce the maximum distance. For you, it sounds like good deflection control is important, and in which case, IMO, you would want separate control for the deflector from the chute rotator.

I also considered the Toro when I bought the Ariens. From what I could see, the Toro's system does not have the ability to increase the chute rotation angle. For the Platinum, you'll have to sneak a wrench and remove the cover. If you're buying at a dealer, they'll probably pull the cover for you. At Home Depot, maybe not so much.

One important thing to know- If you're coming from an MTD, you will be mega impressed by the Ariens' performance, whether you choose the Deluxe, Deluxe SHO, or the Platinum.

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Nearest, rather than furthest throw distance.

Many of the reviews and promotional materials for blowers stress long throw distance, and that is a factor for me as well. However, so is the minimum distance. Ariens' website specs (Deluxe) indicate a range 3 - 55 feet. On one side of my driveway there's not more than 5 feet of space. Visually, the Ariens deflector doesn't seem to go low enough to achieve this, especially as the engine speed is either full run or idle -- there's no option to slow it down a bit to reduce the throw distance. What's the nearest others have actually experienced? Is 3 feet realistic when directing the snow sideways to the direction of the blower?
That is one other reason I chose the Toro Power Max HD 928. It has the jointed end on the chute and can set exit snow downward where you want it in narrow spaces. I have the same in my front walk area .
Also. . picture included, the rearward chute angle on the 928 is more than satisfactory. It is about the same as my Craftsman (MTD) which works as well . . . about a 200 degree swing or so.
I really don't want to have to modify or damage a new snow blower under warranty to accomplish what already has an excellent design.
Engine speed on the Toro models has a wide adjustment as well. I kept going back to the videos which alone tell me the Toro has the features and quality I wanted.

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Is there something wrong with the above previous post ? I keep getting "Waiting for Moderator Approval" . . . ?
 

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keep in mind that anything you do to reduce the minimum distance will at some point, reduce the maximum distance.
The dealer I visited said the same, consequently my post (#35 above). If Ariens' 3 - 55 feet is accurate for the minimum distance, then I wouldn't have to be concerned about adjusting the deflector and compromising the maximum distance.
 
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