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Discussion Starter #1
This is my first winter with the JD, and although we don't normally get a lot of snow like some of you, getting a couple of 12" snowfalls in a row, with some 2" to 4's in between, is normal. I have a walk-behind 2 stage snow blower than my SIL gave me, abut now that I have FEL, I'm thinking 'yes', that will be the better option. But I have a few questions.

Should I paint and then wax the inside of the bucket, or is snow sticking not a problem?

Should I add some sort of a heavy duty wear edge to the FEL bucket? Does anyone make something that would hold up? Horse-stall rubber mat at TSC? How to attach? Any links or pics?

My drive and parking lot are blacktop paved. None flat; all sloped. Rear wheels are filled, and I have an 800 lb ballast box. Should I use it? Do I need chains?

Thanks for any and all suggestions.
 

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The loader & tractor sitting in the back of my shop I used to clean the barnyard of the farm we lived on when I was 7-8 years old till I went off to college when I was 18. It's now my #2 snow mover. My #1 snow mover is 3 years newer, and a little smaller in size & HP, and no power steering, but moves snow with an 80 inch wide by 16 inch high blade.

My driveway is all concrete, chains are an absolute must have, drive slopes uphill to the road. Chains do scratch concrete and blacktop unless you are extremely careful. I've tried using my #2 snow mover without chains, although I have chains, it gets stuck on flat ground in a half inch of snow. Sad actually for an 8000+# tractor with 50 HP to be so helpless. With chains it can push through 2 ft deep snow with no problem. Same situation with my #1 snow mover.

Bucket wear edges will wear. They can be replaced. Same with scraper edges on blades. Yes, snow will stick to loader buckets and blades. PAM cooking spray helps. Best to keep the bucket/blade as cold as possible, if it's above freezing temp, like just driven out of your shop/garage that's heated to 60 degrees snow will melt on contact and stick. Even aiming hot exhaust or heated air after it's passed through the radiator towards the bucket/blade will make snow stick and ice to build up.

And put your loaded ballast box on. Use 4wd and diff lock as required. If you still have insufficient traction, chains will be needed.
 

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You will need the rear ballast and yes you will need chains.

Forget the other items if anything maybe cheapest Pam like product.
 

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My opinion.
Asphalt is slick, chains or not. From my experience, if the asphalt is coated, it's worse.

Pick a point to attack your slopes that will create the least amount of resistance, i.e., downhill for a pass or two. You can change direction to uphill if you commit to doing a half a bucket width going back uphill and also dependent on the amount of snow. Use diff lock when you can. As others have said, ballast will help.

Looks like your bucket covers your wheel tracks from the picture in your avatar. That's key in my opinion.

I use the FEL and a 72 inch rear blade on mine. Sometimes I wish I had chains and the :gizmo: for them but I only plow gravel and concrete surfaces.

I've read posts that stated that they preferred turfs over other tires when not using chains. Can't comment on that. I have R4's and used KennyD's grooving which helped immensely.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for all the replies and tips. OK, so the ballast box will stay on, and yes, I planned on using 4WD, and diff lock. Don't have chains, and hesitant to buy them unless/until I realize that the FEL is useless without them.

I don't have much of a choice of where to start plowing. The tractor lives in my above-freeing, insulated and sometimes heated barn shop. The barn is near the bottom of the sloped driveway, and the house, garage and parking area are halfway up the slope, toward the road. So the first plowing will be uphill all the way to the road.

I do have the turf tires, so I'm surprised to hear that they should do half-decent on snow. They have the finest tread, for driving on lawns. Always wished that it had the R4, or whatever they're called, as I thought they had better traction, and I definitely didn't want Ag tires. But I bought this tractor early this year, with the tires that are on it.

Worst case scenerio is I either buy chains the the rear, or just keep using the walk-behind snow thrower that I've actually thought about selling.

Maybe it won't snow this winter. :laugh:
 

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Your tractor is similar to my JD 650,,, identical size front tires,,,

There is ZERO chance the tractor will successfully move any snow with turf tires.



If you have any grades, add a rear blade,, you will need it as a boat anchor during your first out of control slide.

Being able to stop the tractor is more important than getting the tractor to go,,,,
 

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Thanks for all the replies and tips. OK, so the ballast box will stay on, and yes, I planned on using 4WD, and diff lock. Don't have chains, and hesitant to buy them unless/until I realize that the FEL is useless without them.

I don't have much of a choice of where to start plowing. The tractor lives in my above-freeing, insulated and sometimes heated barn shop. The barn is near the bottom of the sloped driveway, and the house, garage and parking area are halfway up the slope, toward the road. So the first plowing will be uphill all the way to the road.

I do have the turf tires, so I'm surprised to hear that they should do half-decent on snow. They have the finest tread, for driving on lawns. Always wished that it had the R4, or whatever they're called, as I thought they had better traction, and I definitely didn't want Ag tires. But I bought this tractor early this year, with the tires that are on it.

Worst case scenerio is I either buy chains the the rear, or just keep using the walk-behind snow thrower that I've actually thought about selling.

Maybe it won't snow this winter. :laugh:
Why? My barn where my tractor is stored is at the low spot of my driveway. I simply drive to the top of the driveway (bucket up), turn around, and plow downhill.

Rinse and repeat.

Just did that today -

http://www.greentractortalk.com/forums/land-ownership-landscaping-lawn-care-gardening/5648-snow-plowing-whatcha-using-year-104.html#post1387793
 

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I don't get much snow here so I use the FEL. I have the BXpanded tooth bar on mine and don't plan on taking it off for any reason. I level the FEL, tip it up just a bit, put in float mode and go. With the FEL you can shake off any snow that might want to stick to it. I also have R4's which in snow and any type of grade is not a good thing. They like to slide, especially sideways. No grip at all on the sides and not much going forward and backwards. Chains keep this from happening. I have gravel and it still is a problem with sliding without chains. BXpanded also has a flat bar you can put on your FEL so you can scrape all the way down if you so choose. It will protect your FEL edge. And should any of the snow turn to ice, you will need chains. I came close to not making it back up my drive the first time I used my tractor with the FEL. And that was using 4x4 and rear diff. locked in. On gravel! Where someone had driven on my drive had turned to ice. They had driven up my drive and back down/out, once. And after I drove on it clearing the snow out it turned to ice before I started back up it. That's when I knew I needed chains. Get a set. It will protect you and everything around you. Except maybe your asphalt/cement driveway.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Why? My barn where my tractor is stored is at the low spot of my driveway. I simply drive to the top of the driveway (bucket up), turn around, and plow downhill.

Rinse and repeat.

Just did that today -

http://www.greentractortalk.com/forums/land-ownership-landscaping-lawn-care-gardening/5648-snow-plowing-whatcha-using-year-104.html#post1387793
Stan, I'm not certain of this, but you only got 3" of snow, and if I'm non mistaken, you have a stone driveway? I think under those condx, you have enough traction. If we get 6-12 on blacktop, not sure I could drive through unplowed snow, up the grade, with turf tires. Do you have turf tires on your tractor? Do you ever use chains?
 

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Stan, I'm not certain of this, but you only got 3" of snow, and if I'm non mistaken, you have a stone driveway? I think under those condx, you have enough traction. If we get 6-12 on blacktop, not sure I could drive through unplowed snow, up the grade, with turf tires. Do you have turf tires on your tractor? Do you ever use chains?
Since you mentioned you have turf tires., and you mentioned you will be plowing up hill from the very beginning.

If you have a garage door opener on building be sure to leave the door OPEN, while going up the drive and while coming back down the drive. :dunno:
 

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Not PC

This is definitely not a politically correct approach but I try to paint my rear blade with used motor oil before I start with snow. We usually have several gallons sitting around, it works and costs me nothing. If I'm really good and the plow is dry, I'll paint it again before storing it outside. Snow can stick in the FEL bucket. Yes, you can shake it out but it takes time and is frustrating if you have to do that with every push.

Don't have chains but thinking about it. I would have used them last year for sure. After last year, I grooved and filled the rear tires and will use a 5' rear blade rather than the 6' if we get another deep snow/ice combo. I'm thinking about converting a 48" Gravely blade to fit on the FEL and adding wings so it clears a full tire track width. Probably won't get that done before it snows but hey, I'm thinking about it! One nice thing about a FEL and bucket is when you push too far down hill you can use the bucket to back up. Not good on pavement but great when you misjudge where a drop off is because of snow drifts and suddenly find your front end where it shouldn't be.

Maybe it won't snow here. Some years none, some years way more than I want to deal with.

Treefarmer
 

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Discussion Starter #13
This is definitely not a politically correct approach but I try to paint my rear blade with used motor oil before I start with snow. We usually have several gallons sitting around, it works and costs me nothing. If I'm really good and the plow is dry, I'll paint it again before storing it outside. Snow can stick in the FEL bucket. Yes, you can shake it out but it takes time and is frustrating if you have to do that with every push.

Don't have chains but thinking about it. I would have used them last year for sure. After last year, I grooved and filled the rear tires and will use a 5' rear blade rather than the 6' if we get another deep snow/ice combo. I'm thinking about converting a 48" Gravely blade to fit on the FEL and adding wings so it clears a full tire track width. Probably won't get that done before it snows but hey, I'm thinking about it! One nice thing about a FEL and bucket is when you push too far down hill you can use the bucket to back up. Not good on pavement but great when you misjudge where a drop off is because of snow drifts and suddenly find your front end where it shouldn't be.

Maybe it won't snow here. Some years none, some years way more than I want to deal with.

Treefarmer
You got me thinking about that oil on the blade idea. I've got a coupke of cans of old Johnson's paste wax, and what if I put that on the bucket, and just left it. No buffing, no waxing off. Just leave a layer of wax on anything snow would stick to.

The other thing you made me think about is the rear blade. Well, I don't exzctly have a rear blade, but I do have a 6' landscape rake; tines are closely spaced, and it has the gauge wheels, to set the height. I've used it to scrape and move dirt. Might work with snow too, maybe. It could be useful to pull the bulk of a deep snow away from a building that I can't use the FEL bucket to backdrag.

We're in similar weather patterns; some years, lots of snow, and others, almost nothing.
 

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Paste wax

You got me thinking about that oil on the blade idea. I've got a coupke of cans of old Johnson's paste wax, and what if I put that on the bucket, and just left it. No buffing, no waxing off. Just leave a layer of wax on anything snow would stick to.

The other thing you made me think about is the rear blade. Well, I don't exzctly have a rear blade, but I do have a 6' landscape rake; tines are closely spaced, and it has the gauge wheels, to set the height. I've used it to scrape and move dirt. Might work with snow too, maybe. It could be useful to pull the bulk of a deep snow away from a building that I can't use the FEL bucket to backdrag.

We're in similar weather patterns; some years, lots of snow, and others, almost nothing.
I've also used paste wax which works well. It probably lasted a bit longer than the oil but was slower to put on. Anything to slick up the surface seems to help.

Treefarmer
 

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ski wax

commenting only about snow sticking to the bucket.

You guys might want to try a bar of ski wax. It comes in a large cake (mine are 10" long) and goes on pretty quickly.
 

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Stan, I'm not certain of this, but you only got 3" of snow, and if I'm non mistaken, you have a stone driveway? I think under those condx, you have enough traction. If we get 6-12 on blacktop, not sure I could drive through unplowed snow, up the grade, with turf tires. Do you have turf tires on your tractor? Do you ever use chains?
I have R4 tires on my 2520.

I did my driveway for 7 winters without chains and made it to the top (not plowing) every time. However.....there were times when it was difficult especially when we get a lot of sleet mixed with snow. And to add to that the top of my driveway meets the state road so they had been plowing all night which makes it twice as deep where my driveway meets the road.

Also understand with a gravel driveway, once I've had a snowfall or two, I have a solid ice pack for the rest of the winter.

Finally got myself an awesome set of Aqualine chains a couple years ago. Amazing difference! I can walk up to the top of the driveway in 2WD no matter what now. With that 3" of heavy snow yesterday I was able to plow going uphill for my first pass.

So I would say that a pair of chains on the rear would eliminate any problems you might have. Well worth the investment to have the confidence to plow anything on the hill any way I want - and not risk sliding off the side.
 

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You got me thinking about that oil on the blade idea. I've got a coupke of cans of old Johnson's paste wax, and what if I put that on the bucket, and just left it. No buffing, no waxing off. Just leave a layer of wax on anything snow would stick to.

The other thing you made me think about is the rear blade. Well, I don't exzctly have a rear blade, but I do have a 6' landscape rake; tines are closely spaced, and it has the gauge wheels, to set the height. I've used it to scrape and move dirt. Might work with snow too, maybe. It could be useful to pull the bulk of a deep snow away from a building that I can't use the FEL bucket to backdrag.

We're in similar weather patterns; some years, lots of snow, and others, almost nothing.
I've been considering having a local metal shop bend me a piece of 6 - 8 gauge sheet metal to match the contour of my rake tines, and then clamping it to the rake to do just what you're talking about.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I've been considering having a local metal shop bend me a piece of 6 - 8 gauge sheet metal to match the contour of my rake tines, and then clamping it to the rake to do just what you're talking about.
Jim, that's not a bad idea, but I gotta wonder if the landscape rake would do a decent job just as is. The 1" tines are 1" apart, and unless snow is powder, I think it might pull (or push, backing up), a lot of it out.

When we get a real dry powder snowfall, I have actually gone out with my leaf blower, and cleared off the steps, sidewalk, and a lot of the driveway. :laugh:
 

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I've been considering having a local metal shop bend me a piece of 6 - 8 gauge sheet metal to match the contour of my rake tines, and then clamping it to the rake to do just what you're talking about.
I think Landpride makes one for their rake. I also saw one a while back on a Frontier rake.
 
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