Snowblower Forum banner

21 - 31 of 31 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #21
Used chains on a snowblower I owned years ago (not a modern tire). Got the familiar thump, thump, thump as the tire rolled up over the chain and back down again. But they worked.
Using x-trac tires now and dont need any chains.

But, if I did, I'd probably use these:
Curious if you are operating up and down hilly terrain (say 5 to 7 % slope) or mostly level . Glad to hear that the Xtracs give you favorable results without chains; wish I could have said the same with my 16" Xtracs .
Thank you for the reply,
Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #22
I'm also in MA. I've had multiple machines with Snow Hog tires. No X-Tracs yet, but curious to try them.

I have used chains for about 15 years (my set is just about worn out). Our driveway gets up to around 8 degrees of slope, I think, from a quick check recently with my phone.

My current Ariens has a differential. I briefly tried it without chains, and quickly put them back on. Without them, I had trouble getting up the driveway. At times, I still have to disable the differential and lock the wheels together, even with the chains, but that's more for the dense stuff from the plows. I do have extra weight (~25 lbs) on the bucket, to help hold it down. Perhaps this makes things tougher for the tires.

If I changed to X-Tracs I might consider putting tubes in at the same time. At least I could easily try adding liquid for extra ballast, without messing with the rim.
Gotta say that's a lot of snow machine chain experience.. Our driveways are about the same slope so I'm wondering about the vibration talked about while operating with chains. Do you leave the chains on all year? Also do you use the Z pattern chains with your SnowHog tires?
Thank you for the reply,
Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter #23
Ran chains for years on an Ariens 10K series blower from the mid 70's onward with the stock lawn tires. Neighbors driveway had enough slope that you just plain could not get up it without them.

With regard to vibration and all that jazz, I'm calling that a myth - never had a single issue in years of use (or any notable markings on pavement). But then again, we are in snow area deep enough that you don't see much pavement for most of the year . . .

In any case, with the X-Tracs on the current machine, I have not had any issues - the newer tires are def. better, but can't compare with or without chains since the newer ones are much bigger, and thus the chains won't fit to even try, and I have no desire to buy a set when no problem is presenting itself.

So, my thoughts in summary:

  • Lawn tires on anything but pure flat - chains can be gold, zero reasons not to use.
  • More modern tires - yet to find a need for chains.
Happy to hear that you are good to blow with your Xtrac tires...me was not so good during last wet spring snows. Lots of spinning of Xtrac tires. Are you operating on any slopes or mostly level ground?
Thank you for the reply,
Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,919 Posts
Gotta say that's a lot of snow machine chain experience.. Our driveways are about the same slope so I'm wondering about the vibration talked about while operating with chains. Do you leave the chains on all year? Also do you use the Z pattern chains with your SnowHog tires?
Thank you for the reply,
Mike
I haven't had a problems from the bouncing, anyways. But I've had them on for so long that I'm just kind of used to it, so can't offer much comparison vs a non-chains setup.

I leave the chains on all the time. Mine are 2-link chains. So they're not a Z pattern, but they're closely-spaced, at least.

The funny thing (to me) is I just found some used XTracs for sale locally, may go see tomorrow, perhaps I can get them cheap. If so, hopefully they'd be good enough without chains, otherwise they won't really be much of an upgrade :)
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
2,680 Posts
Hard to read at night, but looks like the tires I currently have on it are 5.30/4.50-6. They're the same ones that I believe came oem on the blowers of that era. They are not traction tires, but do just fine with the chains on the blower. I'm attaching a picture that shows the tires along with the rebuilt chains.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,919 Posts
I bought the used X-Tracs. It will obviously be a while before I can try them out. But I'll get them mounted, and at least have a chance to compare them against my chained Snow Hogs.

If I'm feeling especially diligent, maybe I'll put tubes in them, to allow adding liquid to the tires, without concerns about rusting the wheels. They wouldn't hold much, but it would be some extra ballast, without needing to attach weight to the outside of the machine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
242 Posts
I bought the used X-Tracs. It will obviously be a while before I can try them out. But I'll get them mounted, and at least have a chance to compare them against my chained Snow Hogs.

If I'm feeling especially diligent, maybe I'll put tubes in them, to allow adding liquid to the tires, without concerns about rusting the wheels. They wouldn't hold much, but it would be some extra ballast, without needing to attach weight to the outside of the machine.
*** Another trick that I often see people use is to back up/reverse their snowblowers up hill so that they can push snow downhill only. It is slower, but will help with the traction for sure.

Your idea of adding liquid to tire for weight sounded strange for me at first, but it does make sense and a lot of people are actually doing it, so I might give it a try someday.
Adding liquid to tire will not put weight on the axle. It is the best place to put weight on for traction.
Maybe make the rims heavier somehow as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,919 Posts
Yeah, no extra stress on the rest of the transmission/frame, which is nice.

Without the differential lock, I'd be more likely to pursue attaching weights to the wheels. But because I need access to the knob at the center of the left wheel, that makes it more difficult to add weight. You can't really just tuck it inside the wheel.

Putting it inboard of the wheels could work, but there is not much clearance between the frame and the wheels. Maybe removing the wheels would allow attaching some weight to the back side of the hubs, then re-install the wheels.

Realistically, something like mounting it at the base of the handlebars, or something like that, might be simplest, and "good enough". At the base of the bars, it wouldn't be adding much bending stress to the bars. And it would probably give more flexibility on how much weight to add. Heck, you could maybe even leave it off most of the time, if it wasn't always needed.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
954 Posts
Happy to hear that you are good to blow with your Xtrac tires...me was not so good during last wet spring snows. Lots of spinning of Xtrac tires. Are you operating on any slopes or mostly level ground?
Thank you for the reply,
Mike
Slope on the neighbor's all the time . . . 5 or 6 foot rise over about 1-1/2 car lengths, so while not a cliff, pretty steep nonethless. My current Plat 24 will run right up it between the tires and autoturn - even after slop had frozen and I was slipping myself wearing Sorels.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
242 Posts
I looked at my Ariens ST824E's spec and it only weight 225 pounds, while all the newer Deluxe 24 weight more than 250 pounds. They share the same parts and 90% identical. Heck, my Tecumseh engine block is even heavier than the new engine blocks, so how they got the extra 25 pounds heavier????? More weights and larger wheels definitely help.
 
21 - 31 of 31 Posts
Top