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Recently, my brother in law bought a house and as a result he will need his first snowblower. He isn't mechanically inclined and will be served well with an almost no-maintenance type engine like a two stroke. I have a 726te that I love, and its a rare machine. One turned up in vermont about 3 hours away for a good price, so I went up and purchased it with the intent of restoring it.

The restoration work required was more extensive cosmetically than I anticipated, especially for a unit "in good condition, stored in the garage" like the advertisement said... Mechanically, it was in excellent shape - it starts with a half-hearted tug on the starter, revs right up to 4200rpm, and is smooth as silk.

I replaced the carburetor with a metal unit (I've had terrible luck with the plastic carburetors on these, although this one ran fine, I replaced it anyways.) and changed the spark plug. The governor was adjusted to the aforementioned 4200 rpm (they run like monsters in the snow at this rpm) and the carb was rejetted (these late model two strokes have very very very lean jetting in order to save the world from melting all the snow that they need to blow).

The mouse nest inside the housing had to be seen to be believed - the pictures show about 1/5 of what came out - it was literally filled from top to bottom under the engine housing - there was zero space for anything - all acorns, leaves, papers, straw, etc.. All of that was cleaned out, the engine was steam cleaned, carb swap and plug change, and closed back up. The inside of the bucket had some pretty good surface rust, as did the augers and impellers. These were wire brushed and cleaned, treated with rust converter, and painted with rustoleum hammered finish paint.

The stock skid shoes were worn THROUGH the metal on both sides, and were completely useless. These were replaced with factory toro skid shoes, all exterior rust was treated and painted with factory toro paint, and the paint was buffed and waxed.

Gearbox oil was changed, all pivots and cables were lubed, and the drive axles were greased.

I'm pleased with how it turned out. Some of the pictures show it next to my 726te, which was purchased new (a leftover 2005 that I purchased in 2009) and has the weight kit and commercial handlebar supports added to it.




















 

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I was thinking "What a piece of crap! Hope you didn't pay much for it."

Then I saw them side by side. Couldn't tell the difference. Wow. What a nice job. I'll hire you.
 

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wow, nice restoration
 

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If I had more room in the garage I'd love to have one of those, I am a fellow 2 stroke fan! PS what's under the car cover?
 

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So, how would you compare the Toro to the Honda in snow removal ability/distance ?
Interesting question - with the caveat that I only have two uses of the Honda under my belt so far, and maybe 50+ with the Toro - I will share my thoughts, which really don't offer much of a definitive answer :).

The motor on the Toro is stronger. It has so much grunt after some mild tweaks. I re-jetted my GX270 ( it was pathetic with the stock jet ) and its great, but the r*tek is just so strong. I hate that two strokes were regulated out of production. That said, the impeller speed on the Honda is way higher, and it seems to throw pretty clearly further. The toro is no slouch but its just not slinging it as far as the Honda. The toro can get through some very deep thick snow, as I've shown in youtube videos - and we know the Honda can too.

I find the Toro a bit simpler to use, but remember I have only about 2 hours behind the Honda controls. The 726te has no levers for turning, which stinks. I suspect I will get better and smoother at using the Honda, but I prefer the quick stick to the electronic controls on the Honda.

Tracks and the ability to raise and lower the auger make for a huge plus on the Honda's side.

Construction wise, the Toro seems heavier built, but less "sophisticated". The Honda has nicer hardware, but the Toro feels beefier - beefier welds, gussets, etc. All in all, I don't need them both - if price were equal I would probably get the Honda because of the housing adjustment capability and the tracks - the fact of the matter is, for 90% of snows, even up here in the northeast, a big single stage is faster and better, so the more plodding nature of the Honda doesn't hurt it. But if I only had to have one blower, and it had to be a two stage, I'd go with the Toro. The honda is simply overpriced, but I still really like it. Given the huge price disparity, the Toro makes more sense.

Honda track machine plus a powerful single stage is the ultimate combo I think. And for the single stage, I think the Toro 221QR that I have is the pinnacle of single stage blowers (even better than the GX powered Honda single stagers !!! )
 

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awesome work !!
 

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If I had more room in the garage I'd love to have one of those, I am a fellow 2 stroke fan! PS what's under the car cover?
looks like a BMW, or an Aston? (under the red cover)
 
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