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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)

(Note! the post below is the state of the industry in January 2013.
For the most recent update, Autumn 2018, click here.)


I have been tracking this for a few years now..
here is the update for 2013:

The State of Snowblower evolution, 2013 model year.

Tecumseh snowblower engines, up to 2008, were always made in the USA. Briggs & Stratton engines were made in the USA for the majority of its history. Around the year 2000 (perhaps earlier in the 90’s) Briggs began their smaller gas engines in China.

Up until 2008, probably 90% of snowblowers were 100% American-made, both the snowblower body, and the engine both. Tecumseh had the majority of the snowblower engine market before 2008, and Briggs was still making their larger engines in the USA. Only the smaller Briggs engines were made in China.

Tecumseh pulled out of the small gas engine business in 2008. 2009 was the last model year that snowblowers were commonly found with Tecumseh engines on them. (2009 model year were machines that went on sale in the Autumn of 2008)

Since 2008, Production of small gas engines has moved to China in a huge way.
In 2008, perhaps 90% of snowblowers had American-made engines on them.
Only 5 years later, in 2013, probably 90% have Chinese-made engines. And the percentage of American-made engines continues to drop. Soon it will likely be 100% Chinese engines on all snowblowers, lawnmowers, garden tractors, and anything with a small gas single-cylinder engine.

Brand names with American-made snowblower bodies, and *some* American-made engines:
(the last remaining 100% made in the USA snowblowers)

Ariens - Three models remaining in the 2013 lineup with American-made Briggs engines:
12V Pro 32, Platinum 30, Deluxe 30.
The rest of the models have Chinese engines.

Beginning this year, 2013 model year, "Made in the USA" stickers have appeared on engines of Ariens machines, which have the USA-made engines:

(im not sure if Ariens added the stickers, or if Briggs did.)
But this is the first model year those stickers have been seen on those engines, a handy spotting feature!

Snapper - (made by Briggs & Stratton)
Three models remaining in the 2013 lineup with American-made Briggs engines:
M1529E, H1528E, H1730E.
The rest of the models have Chinese engines.

Simplicity - (made by Briggs & Stratton)
Four models remaining in the 2013 lineup with American-made Briggs engines:
H1528E, H1730E, P1524E, P1728E.
The rest of the models have Chinese engines.

The Briggs brands are using the old Simplicity and Murray designs for their snowblowers.
Since 2005, the Briggs names have included Simplicity, Snapper, Murray, John Deere,
and Brute. John Deere and Murray snowblowers are no longer being made. And Brute
is 100% Chinese engines.

Husqvarna - The evolutionary successor to the old AYP snowblower line.
One model remaining with an American-made Briggs engine.
14527E
The rest of the models have Chinese engines.
Husqvarna also makes Polan snowblowers, Poulan has 100% Chinese engines.


That makes Eleven total snowblower models in 2013, from three manufacturers (Ariens, Briggs and Husqvarna) that are still 100% American made, both the snowblower, and the engine both. And the percentage drops every year. Soon it is likely we will have all Chinese engines on all snowblowers.


Brand names with American-made snowblower bodies, and all Chinese-made engines, (as of 2013)

MTD brands (Cub Cadet, Troy-Bilt, Yard Machines, most Craftsman) - all Chinese engines. (starting in 2012)

Toro - All Chinese Engines. (starting in 2013)


Brand names that are 100% made in China:
In addition to Chinese engines on American-made snowblowers, we are now also seeing 100% Chinese made snowblowers, both the snowblower body, and the engine both. The following brands are known to be 100% Chinese built:

Stanley
World Lawn
Snow Beast
Huskee
Powerland
Snow Joe

The 100% American made snowblower (and lawnmower, and riding mower, and garden tractor) is fading fast..get them while you still can!

Which engines are the remaining American-made engines? Only three US-made snowblower engines remain:

Briggs & Stratton 305cc 1450 Series
Briggs & Stratton 342cc 1550 Series
Briggs & Stratton 342cc 1650 Series.

ALL other snowblower engines, including all Briggs engines except those three models, are made in China..(the exception being perhaps Honda snowblowers, who perhaps still makes some Honda engines in Japan, and China as well.)

But there are definitely only three remaining US-made engines.
(source for that info is “Snowmann” on the forums, who is known to work for Ariens,
He posted that info about the Briggs engines a few years ago.)

Other sources: Ariens 2013 brochure, Toro 2013 brochure, Cub Cadet brochure, other MTD brand webpages, Briggs & Stratton brand (Simplicity, Snapper) webpages, Husqvarna webpage.

Disclaimer 1 - yes, I know..someone will bring it up! ;) I am aware that when I say “100% American-made snowblower, both the snowblower body and engine both” that is not *literally* 100% true! Because some *parts* are made overseas..The American-made Briggs engine likely has parts made in China inside of it, and perhaps the “Made in America” snowblowers do as well! But im not concerned about that.
This is my criteria:
If its made in a factory on US soil, by US workers, then im calling it “Made in the USA”
If its made in a factory on Chinese soil, by Chinese workers, then im calling it “Made in China”
Im not concerned with the exact origin of every last nut and bolt.

Disclaimer 2 - the above information is likely incomplete! Especially the “100% made in China snowblower” data..there are probably several brand names I am missing. Also, The above list primarily focuses on 2-stage snowblowers, because it is believed that 100% of Single-Stage snowblower engines are made in China, and have been for some time.

If anyone has any corrections or additions to this list, please let me know!
I have been tracking snowblower evolution since 2009, (and all the way back to 1960! With my Ariens webpage) and I will try to update this list every January.

Thanks,
Scot
 

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It's unfortunate but a fact of life, things once made here are now made elsewhere along with the jobs of creating them.
There's no single cause, but every consumer has to accept part of the blame. Every stockholder getting a dividend check is another. Every exec that is getting a fatter paycheck becuse of jobs no longer done here have a piece in this puzzle too.
It goes all up and down the food chain.
 

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And we wonder why there is no jobs any more. We are spoiling are selves out of jobs by buying crap like mtd stuff . So briggs to keep cost down are out sourcing every thing. Another rising cost is unions. Heck if your a union worker it's hard to get fired. I know if I was drinking my lunch like those jeep workers and showed up at a client's house id loose that job.
 

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sad to see it. Btw I was doing some research and Is Tecumseh (whats left of it) owned by the same company that creates lct engines. I have been trying to find out where they are manufactured.
 

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Sscotsman, Thanks for all the great information on the different makes, models and engines of snowblowers that are made here and abroad. Since I'm more of a "Here" guy, this info will help me out the next time I'm in the market for another snowblower:).

As far as what 69ariens and HCBPH said, I couldn't have said it better. Just for giggles, the next time you're in your local store, go to the flag section and see where your American flag was made. It may surprise you:eek:.
 

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Hey scot. Quick question. I do remember somewhere where I read that Ariens even had some Robin/Subaru engines on them. I checked them out and noticed they have manufaturing plant(s) in japan and a usa plant. Do you happen to know if the engines they had on the Ariens were American made?

I can sort of see why they took them off. The are very expensive engines. I have one on my Go-kart and I'm going to see if I can see on it where it was made.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hey scot. Quick question. I do remember somewhere where I read that Ariens even had some Robin/Subaru engines on them. I checked them out and noticed they have manufaturing plant(s) in japan and a usa plant. Do you happen to know if the engines they had on the Ariens were American made?

I can sort of see why they took them off. The are very expensive engines. I have one on my Go-kart and I'm going to see if I can see on it where it was made.
Ariens did/does have a few models with the Subaru engine..starting in 2010, they have had a few models each year, and this year the Subaru engines are on the "power brush" models:

Power Brush

I dont know where they are made! have never seen any data on that..
Two Subaru engines are listed, 169cc and 265cc.
I will try to see if i can find out where they are made!

Subaru webpage for the engines:

Subaru Robin

They make no mention of where they are made..
But good question! I will try to find out..
Scot
 

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It seems to be a fact of life that we are in a global economy. Honda manufactures a number of outdoor products, and has plants in the USA. I've gotten parts from them that are labeled "Made in the USA", and others that are labeled "Assembled in the USA." I've also seen labels from them that say "Assembled in Japan from parts made in the USA."
 

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For the record, here's Honda:

HS520A, HS520AS (single-stage): Engines are cast in Swepsonville, NC. Complete model assembly is also done in Swepsonville. Canadian and other export versions are also manufactured in Swepsonville.

All others (2-stage wheel and track models HS724, HS928, HS1132, HS1136i): Engines are cast in Thailand, shipped to Japan, final assembly in Japan for global delivery to Honda distributors.

[email protected]
Caveat: I work for Honda, but the preceding is my opinion alone.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well, got some interesting news!
Briggs & Stratton posted this news release in April 2012:

"Briggs & Stratton also announced that production of horizontal shaft engines currently made in the Auburn, Alabama plant will move to the Company’s existing production facility in Chongqing, China or be sourced from third parties in Southeast Asia. The Company previously moved smaller horizontal shaft engines to the Chongqing, China plant in 2007 where these types of engines can be made more competitively."
source: Briggs & Stratton Corporation Announces Strategic Actions and Cost Reductions : 01 : 2012 : News Articles : Briggs & Stratton News | BASCO : BASCO

I had assumed that *probably* meant that the last US-made Briggs snowblower engines would no longer be made in the USA..but it wasn't completely clear if those specific Snowblower engines were made at that plant, (Auburn, Alabama) or if they were made at a different Briggs plant in the US..It wasnt completely clear if the Briggs announcment would mean the end of the US-made *snowblower* engines specifically, those three models discussed above..

But now I have confirmation..

yes, it does in fact refer to those engines..

Which means..The last USA-made snowblower engines, ever! were last made in 2012!
This model year, 2013 model year (snowblowers that went on sale in the Autumn of 2012) will almost certainly be the last ever 100% Made in the USA snowblowers..

Many snowblower bodies will continue to be made in the USA (Ariens, Toro, the MTD brands, the Briggs brands, and Husquvarna) but not the engines..

(actually, im still not sure about the Subaru engines! I dont think they are made in the USA..but I will post if/when I find out..)

Scot

"Nobody told me there'd be days like these,
Strange days indeed -- strange days indeed.."
-John Lennon
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Ok! got all the data now..

The Subaru snowblower engines are made in Japan or China.
(depending on the size and model)
Only larger Subaru engines have been made in the USA, for things like snowmobiles,
but not for snowblowers.

So thats the final rundown then..
its official..
as of the end of 2012, there are no longer *any* snowblower engines made in the USA.
and by extension, the era of the "100% made in the USA snowblower" has now ended..
This model year, 2013 model year, is the last..
a few are out there for sale this winter, (models and manufacturers discussed in the first thread)
but next year, probably not..

As for me, someday I will own one of these last models! :)
but not this year..I will have to wait 10 years or so and buy one used! ;)
But I will get one, eventually..

I will also check the new models next winter, just to confirm..
but its pretty clear this is the winter it finally happened..

thanks,
Scot
 

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Looks like you did a lot of digging. To bad to see them all move on except for the ss honda. Maybe someday they will come back or some new company will show up out of nowhere and create some usa engines.
 

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Engines from China

Guys,

I saw your thread and there was a question about a Subaru Engine. I bought one to replace the 6 hp Tecumseh that did a great job for many years on a Cyclone Leaf Rake.

This is typically excellent designed piece that starts, idles and runs just like you want. It's overhead cam and overhead valve. It is called an EX17 and is 6hp with 170cc displacement........it too is made in China. Subaru Robin - Features and Benefits

QR
 

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Looks like you did a lot of digging. To bad to see them all move on except for the ss honda. Maybe someday they will come back or some new company will show up out of nowhere and create some usa engines.
As long as John Q. Public buys them they won't be back. Just my 2c but I believe there should be a boycott.

Thanks for all the work you put into this, Scot. Lots of good info.
 

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has there been a problem with the engines made in china? i know toro had a carb problem on the 421 models but nothing about an engine problem
 

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William. I think it's not quality but more of lost jobs to good people of the usa.
 

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William. I think it's not quality but more of lost jobs to good people of the usa.
company's use to have loyalty to their workers now days companys just want the work done by the cheapest labor they can get and these company's don't always have to ship work over seas to get cheap labor
 

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I'm not buying Chinese as long as there are alternatives. That would include rebuilding an older engine/machine. Keep the cash in our country. Again, this is just my humble 2c.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I'm not buying Chinese as long as there are alternatives. That would include rebuilding an older engine/machine. Keep the cash in our country. Again, this is just my humble 2c.
yep, I agree..
I have a 1971 Ariens, a 1964 Wheel Horse tractor, and im looking for a 1961 Cub Cadet tractor..I will never, ever ever ever ever ever, put a Chinese engine on any of them! (especially those cheap Harbor Freight engines..those are doubly insulting to the heritage of my machines! Chinese *and* junky quality..the exact opposite of everything they stand for..)

It would be like restoring a 1965 Ford Mustang, and dropping a Hyundai engine in it..

Scot
 
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