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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, here's what I came up with. Tried making wider skid shoes first, but it still dug in. I used a couple of pieces of 3x5 angle and 5/8 round stock with some HF 8 inch wheels. Tried it out on the drive today and it looks like it might work.
 

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Very interesting, now this is for gravel? Looks like you kept it simple. You may need to double up on the wheels, you know, dualies. Keep us up to date on this.
 

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I was looking at some 8" air tires the other day at Northern Tool. I don't know if the 5" hard plastic ones on my blower will work on gravel or not. I'd buy the castor with the 8", then take off the trailer wheel jacks and have the 8" tire and swivel welded onto the jack by a welding shop (I don't have a welder).

Let us know if the test you did was on gravel or not.

I've also got the big shoes done, and they are now primed and painted with the Kenny and Dave ("Great minds think alike, fools seldom differ") approved primer and paint.

Since there are so few opportunities to test all this here in Sunny North Carolina, I'll probably test the wheels on the gravel some time in the next few months. I'll need snow to test the shoes, otherwise they will wear down and ding up pretty fast.

Those wheels look really good :thumbup1gif:, and I think the 8" size will be a win. Sounds like the test run was a sucsess, let everyone know how they work "for real".

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Runner,

Nice work!!... Looks like the wheels should help when using the blower on gravel!!... That's a great idea!

Does it work OK when making a turn ??

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They are going to dig in on the turns, and it puts a pretty good side load on them. I'm hoping that in actual use, the combination of wider skid plate plus the wheels will allow for some sliding. I will also make a practice of raising the unit a little when turning.

I was sort of hoping for an effect similar to aircraft skis where the tires protrude down through the ski.

I wish there was a way to set the loader up like the three-point for snow operations, i.e., have it be able to maintain some lift but no down force. As it is, your choices are either "float" where the most of the weight of the attachment is on the surface or "non-float" where it is locked in place.
 

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Great idea...one question/comment for you...why did you go on the outside of the blowe "box"? Around here, this time of year with refreeze and such, I'd tear them off in no time, especially when I clear around the mailbox...I'd think that if you could sneak em in behind the box it might be best? Of course, going ahead of the box would be slick & provide great floating, BUT if one of them were to come off, you'd find out rather quickly :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
"Spudland_Dave;6584]Great idea...one question/comment for you...why did you go on the outside of the blowe "box"? "

A couple of reasons. First, I did not want to do anything that would require permanent mods to the blower.

Second, this was the simplest method I could think of that would mount directly to the existing skid shoes.

I did consider some structure that would extend straight ahead of the skid and, if this doesn't work out, that's probably going to be plan B.

I have seen a castering wheel mounted to the rear of the blower like you describe and that would probably be the best way if I didn't mind drilling holes in the unit.
 

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FWIW, for me connecting on the back is odd because of the round impeller chamber area and the square back, which probably comes down to support. No good straight drill through, IIRC. So I though I'd try the side and see if any of this worked, then see the impact of side mount and try other approaches. My funny trailer wheels just required 4 holes on each of the sides, not a big deal.

If this works, I'd like to bring a bar out on the sides, bend it in just a bit, and mount the wheels there. So they are just inside of the area being cleared, and in front of the blower. I'm also running into my limited metal working skills here...

In front has the trade off of how much you can dig into stuff, the side mount has you being careful not to tear them up when close to stuff, and the rear had the problem that the right size bump in the driveway won't be protected.

At least when you can pick your mode of failure, you have the illusion of control...

Pete
 

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:munch::munch::munch:

Kinda interesting boys.

One question though, snowblowers aren't really meant to turn (well at least sharp), so is it that big of a concern? :unknown:
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
:munch::munch::munch:

Kinda interesting boys.

One question though, snowblowers aren't really meant to turn (well at least sharp), so is it that big of a concern? :unknown:
That was my thinking as well. If you just use the skids, you're going to tear up anything other than a hard surface anyway, unless you raise the unit a little when you turn (which is what I anticipate doing).

Here is a roller application for a rear blower that was posted on TBN awhile back that looks like an excellent solution. It's even adjustable from the seat by electric motor.
 

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See, when i was making guage wheels for my rear blade this is what I came up with over the smaller tires. These tires are perfect, they work like the smaller ones minus the ability to drag on the gravel, they will roll right along. They also fit on just right so I can still completly rotate my blade without the guage wheels being in the way. I dont know how to make it work on a snow blower but what about a smaller tire with the common guage wheel pivot that is linked to both sides ie. a bar that holds both wheels at the same height and have a trailer jack in the middle or off to a side to easily adjust the height.
 
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