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I'm looking at other models of snowblowers, and using the advice on here to make a decision. When checking out some models tonight, I saw that the brand "Snow Beast" models are all on significant discount sales on the sears website. The prices are substantially cheaper than anything else. I couldn't locate a lot of reviews, but the reviews I could find suggested real concerns with these models. In addition, these snowblowers are now listed on some websites as being discontinued.

My thinking is to avoid these models, but thought I would post here for any feedback on this particular model.
 

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I don't think anyone here would be looking at a snow beast snowblower and you shouldn't be looking at them either ( jmho ) if you are going to buy some off brand snowblower make sure you can get parts for it
 

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Hi Keen,
welcome to the forum! :)
this topic has come up many times before..so I will simply copy and paste my reply from some previous posts! ;) (its easier than typing it all out again)

yes, some names like MTD and Craftsman are "good"..but some are just "good" while others are actually "better than good"..Its like with cars..Its just a fact that a new Honda is a much more reliable and higher-quality machine than a new Chrysler or Kia..with cars, snowblowers, and many other things, they all "look the same" at a casual glance, but there are genuine differences in quality once you dig deeper. Personally I would put snowblower brands into three tiers:

Best, highest quality, can last 40 years easily:

Ariens
Toro
Honda
Briggs brands: (Briggs & Stratton, Simplicity, Snapper, Brute)

I would only choose from the above four manufacturers, if buying new.
Although Toro moved their 2-stage production to Mexico, so I personally would no longer buy a new Toro for that reason alone..although the actual impact on quality is unknown.

"Good", probably fine, for 5 to 10 years, but not as good, and wont last as long as the above names:

Any MTD (Cub Cadet, Troy-Bilt, Yard Machines, and some others.)
Any Craftsman.
Husquvarna and Poulan.

Never ever buy..ever.. all the 100% Chinese brand names, these names have documented cases of very poor quality..some of them have been discussed by people in this forum, who bought one before understanding what they were buying..the reviews are not at all good..never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never never buy one of these:

Echelon
Huskee
Mansfield
Powerland
powRcraft
Snow Beast
Snow Joe
Stanley
World Lawn


Scot
 

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The huge reason not to buy the really unknown china models is they might only make them for a couple years and then totally discontinue them. Totally means you have a three, four, five ... year old machine that breaks a part and the part is not available. They were made to sell cheap and they was never any thought put into support for the machines after sale. That's the reason in case of a failure during warranty you are more likely to get an exchange machine than a part.

I ran into this when I worked at a store that sold china 4 wheelers. If the drive chain or whatever broke we would either exchange the machine or do a refund as even we couldn't get through to anyone who could send us replacement parts. Their 1-800 number printed inside the manuals would ring forever but no one ever answered.
 

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Never even heard of a snow beast. If I were you I'd pass. Take Scot's advice. Maybe you might consider Husqvarna as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks guys - I'll skip this one.

I'm keeping an eye out for an Ariens/Toro/Honda, but new they are out of my price range.

I have it narrowed down to three: A new Briggs and Stratton 305cc 29" $1099; A little used Troy Bilt 357cc 33" (new $2100, used price asking $1000); A new MTD Pro ($1049).
 

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Thanks guys - I'll skip this one.

I'm keeping an eye out for an Ariens/Toro/Honda, but new they are out of my price range.

I have it narrowed down to three: A new Briggs and Stratton 305cc 29" $1099; A little used Troy Bilt 357cc 33" (new $2100, used price asking $1000); A new MTD Pro ($1049).
you can find good used ones out there.
 

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Since you're Canadian you might want to look at Yamaha, I don't know how big of a yard you have to clean but they have cut back their prices drasticly from last year. They sell a YT624, a YS1028 and a YS1232. The YS1232 is a monster and even with steering assist I'm not heavy or strong enough to handle it. I just recently purchased a YT624 to replace my 30 year old YS524 and have yet to try it because of lack of snow. It's about $1100 cheaper than the equivalent HOnda with manual chute and manual pull start.

http://www.snowblowerforum.com/forum/yamaha-snowblowers/26681-new-yamaha-yt624.html
 

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I don't know parts availability of Snow Beast but most of the parts are still available for my 70's Ariens and that's part of what makes it last all that time.

edit: That Snow Beast pic above sure looks sexy but someone recently told me you can put dresses on a pig, but it's still a pig.
 

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I really can't see why anyone would buy a new snowblower. The good ones are way too expensive and complex, and even a new Ariens will break down more than an old Ariens. The costs are astronomical. 1000's of dollars for a snowblower ? when does sanity enter the picture. for a grand you can buy 20 old snowblowers. or at least 5 really good well maintained ones.

I had a guy offer me an MTD 8HP that needed a carb, and it was a newer machine, for 30 bucks. I was buying a 1962 Ariens from him for $75 with a spare 8HP Briggs vintage engine complete. although the MTD looked like a great deal I left it there and took the Ariens and motor.

one look at the flimsy front chute and auger gearbox told me, that machine would be breaking, rusting soon.

one problem with the flimsy front chutes is, they spread when driven into a bank. the previous owner of that Craftsman 5HP track machine told me, the chute spread on that and the auger shaft pulled out of the side bushings.

these are things you have to look for and be aware of. there's a reason those old machines were built like tanks. they needed to be to last.
 

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Same with John Deere. The reason you can keep them running is they still have the parts available to do it with. I was/am surprised that my 70's Ariens is as easy as it is to get parts as my old Craftsman 3 stage is getting a bit difficult for some stuff.
On a newer machine or a new machine especially, parts and service availability should be as important as price as it's always a shock to find out your new broken really good deal isn't supported and you can't get a simple part to get it running again. Spending a little more for a better known brand that has parts and dealers in your area starts looking pretty good then :rolleyes:
 

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I don't think anyone here would be looking at a snow beast snowblower and you shouldn't be looking at them either ( jmho ) if you are going to buy some off brand snowblower make sure you can get parts for it
Toro 824 // I have a Toro 824 purchased in August of 1988/ just a note to say it still blows Snow / most recently I need to replace the impeller bearing happy to say getting the part was easy and remember the machine is 29 years young. Just a note I also live in a snow belt The spine of the green mountains of Vermont
 

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With machines like these that you use only a couple of months a year, it is not unusual to keep them 15-->20 years. So you want to be able to find parts for them. I have an 18 year old Toro and I can still get most of the parts I would need to keep it going. So I'd say, stick with one of the top three brands (Toro, Honda, Ariens) and the Briggs re-badged ones (Briggs, Similicity and Snapper). These you will be able to get parts for because these manufacturers will be in business years from now. The Chinese are not organized enough to create their own long lasting brands but I'd expect that they will if they don't want to limited to building engines for Toro, Briggs and Ariens.

To the OP, make a determination, about whether you really need a 2 stage machine. If a Honda HS 720 would suffice, then that's a machine you can have for 20+ years and you will always be able to get parts and find mechanics to fix whatever goes wrong with it that you can't fix. I am a big fan of simple, single stage machines. There is just not that much to go wrong.....a set of paddles, drive belt....clean carb...that's about it!!!
While there have been times it would have been nice to have a 2 stage, I am glad I stuck with the single all this time. I bought the Toro new and all its needed were a few sets of paddles, and a new carb after 15 years (throttle shaft wear on the Mikuni carb causes uncontrolled high revving, common Suzuki fault).
 

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absolutely horrible reviews on snowblowersdirect.com
 

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The Chinese are not organized enough to create their own long lasting brands but I'd expect that they will if they don't want to limited to building engines for Toro, Briggs and Ariens.
They dont need to create long-lasting brands with real support and parts availability..that costs too much money..they are selling plenty without doing that..the plan is to build the cheapest junk possible that at least works once, or at least one year minimum..if it doesnt work the second time the message from the manufacturer is: oh well, too bad, we have no parts, we offer no support..you should have known better, we got your money, thats all we care about..throw it away and buy another one.

Americans arent used to that, yet, especially for $300 to $500 products, but they are learning, the hard way.

Scot
 
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