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Discussion Starter #1
I got the loader for my 4520, and also got a plow. As the years go on, the idea of snow removal from a cab tractor has more appeal. The problem is I have a gravel driveway. I made some gravel shoes for my small plow on my JD 318, and as soon as we get some snow they might get tested. I've got both shows and wheels for the blower on my JD 318, and as soon as we get some snow they might get tested.

But now I need to make some shoes for the plow on the 4520. I think a true "Shoe" that scrapes the gravel would not work, so I want to try a wheel in place of the shoe. Here are some pictures of this project, still in development.

As soon as we get some snow, they might get tested.

Oh, and when I say "I made", I drew some really bad pictures, cut some cardboard, and went to someone who has scrap steel and can weld. I don't have a welder for these projects.

Pete
 

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So the previous shots show how it all looks, the pieces, one shoe mounted, and a "floors eye view". Here's how it looks when the blade is angled at 30 degrees, from the top and the front.

Operating with these on will be tricky. You can't back up without lifting the plow. When you are ready to go forward again, you have to lower the plow to within a few inches, then quickly go to float. The biggest shock on the "shoes" will be at this point in the process.

My hope is that once I get the clearance right (typically about 2 to 3" off the gravel) I can just drive down the driveway and plow.

I made the shoes so they can use either a 9" or 12" wheel. I have 9" wheels (filled, not air) that have a steel rim and are rated at 400#s each. I think that will be too close to the limit. The 12" wheels I have are rated at 750#s, but they have a plastic hub and plastic and cold often cause problems. As soon as we get some snow, they might get tested.

Pete
 

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I've got two side project related to all this. I have to take the ballest box and fill it with concrete, and I want to put a hitch on the back and two pipes for shovels and the like. So there will be "yet another ballast box" thread (but if there are pictures, perhaps I can be forgiven).

I'm also making dollies to hold this stuff (the ballast box, forks, blow, and bucket). So these pix are a sneak preview of things to come if I ever get time...

Pete
 

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The wheels look great Pete! I do wonder about the durability of the wheels myself. Maybe a heavier duty aluminum wheel with a urethane tire like something used on a high end tool box or industrial sized caster wheel?


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Discussion Starter #5
When I get the other wheel done, I'll take it out for a test drive on the gravel and see how it holds up. I would expect the maximum wear to come from gravel with no snow on it. I'll also try the 9" wheel and see how it holds up. Sometimes you just gotta try stuff.

The gentleman I had make the wheels forgot to weld one bead on the unpainted one, and I don't have a welder so I'll have to get that touched up, then I can try it out.

Was limited to Northern Hydraulics for wheel choices, a 12" rear wheel for a mower might also be a good choice (but probably more $$s).

Pete
 

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Pete, those look great-really well thought out and constructed...but (there is always a but isn't' there?) I think there needs to be some gussets welded on, there is a lot of leverage placed on the rear part that holds the wheel. I realize the concern is limiting turning or "castoring" but I foresee this bending here. Here is what I am thinking, drawn very crudely in MS Paint:
plowshoes1.jpg


Also, not being able to backdrag snow from against objects will really limit the usefulness I think.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
thanks for the link, Jason, that's in my "dirt toys" bookmark folder. We'll see how the wheels do. I need to get a scale under one and verify the weight too.

The gentleman that did the work has retired from his machine shop business, and was going out of town for a bit in a few days. So I thought I'd get what I could and give it a shot. The 3/8" steel plate is welded on both sides. If the typical load per wheel is 350#, should be OK. I need to figure out what a 400cx weighs... time to log in to the Deere parts site.

I agree that some gusset plates would be good, overkill is better than surprises. I'll give it a dry run on dry gravel 1st and see what else there is to do. Now that I've had one on the plow, I can draw out a sketch of what the plate should look like.

This is very much a "go forward only" device. But if this can get my 900' of driveway clear, I can either go back to the traditional round shoes for the areas close in to the house or use the 318 and it's plow. The 318 is more maneuverable, better for close in. So if this cuts my "out in the cold" time down from 1 hour to 15 minutes, what a win.

tnx for the feedback, now if you Northers would just share your snow with the rest of us....

Pete
 

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now if you Northers would just share your snow with the rest of us....

Pete
You can have all mine Pete!:laugh: We're suppose to get another foot starting around noon today into tomorrow morning.

Nice project! I'm patiently waiting to see how it works.:munch:
 

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I'm assuming the wheels are to keep the cutting edge from digging into or plowing stone/gravle into a pile???

If so, I've had good luck cutting a grove in a lenght of schd 80 pipe and slipping it over the cutting edge.

If that wasnt what the wheels were for, then carry on....:beer:
 

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Snow Blade Wheels & Clearing Gravel Driveways

That looks like a great idea!! Years ago, I'd get the tractor out and blade my gravel driveway when it got 3-6" of snow. By Spring, I'd be needing more gravel having pushed a lot of gravel to the side of the driveway. I soon discovered, if I let the snow pack down and form a nice snow/ice base, my blade would skip and free float right over the gravel clearing the new snow to the side of the driveway. IMO, if the front snow blade digs gravel, you need more snow before you blade it. A clean blade, at full angle left or right, at a good speed, will roll the snow to the side of the blade. As with anything, it takes practice to perfect the right technique. Happy plowing :)
 

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I'll be curious to hear how the wheels work as I would think they would function better on gravel than skids.

It's too bad you don't have a welder Pete as those wheels would have been a good first project for you.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Mowin, indeed the idea is to not scrape up the gravel. I tried the pipe idea on my plow on my 318, it just shattered. And when the plow on the 4520 is in float mode, it would be a lot of weight.

I need to start counting how many times I had a project that needed a little welding. If the count gets to 8, I buy a welder. And this would have been a great project- nice, thick steel.

Still waiting for snow...

Pete
 

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Mowin, indeed the idea is to not scrape up the gravel. I tried the pipe idea on my plow on my 318, it just shattered. And when the plow on the 4520 is in float mode, it would be a lot of weight.

I need to start counting how many times I had a project that needed a little welding. If the count gets to 8, I buy a welder. And this would have been a great project- nice, thick steel.

Still waiting for snow...

Pete
Dont use PVC...It will shatter with the first rock it hits, plus the cold makes it even more brittle
I used Schd 80 steel pipe. Its a PITA cuttin the groove in it, but it will last you a few yrs. I was plowing driveways and a 1/3rd mi privet road and got a season out of it.

I would think a metal shop should grove it for not a lot of $$
 

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Great idea. Years ago I seen this on another site:

doug'ssnowbladecaster1.jpg doug'ssnowbladecaster2.jpg doug'ssnowbladecaster3.jpg doug'ssnowbladecaster4.jpg

doug'ssnowbladecaster5.jpg
 
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Discussion Starter #16
that's looks like the 54" blade for my 318. The "shoes" that came with that are useless on gravel, only about 1" wide. Here's what I made up (ok, contracted out the welding) for that, still waiting for show to try it.

You can see the "original" shoes for the plow on the left, the "hack" I had welded up, and then you see some shoes I bought that are bigger. I hope they are big enought to work on gravel.

On the right are shoes for the blower for the 318 (same one most folks get today). The farthest left shows the difference between the "stock" shoe and the what the new shoes will do, another try to get it to work on gravel.

Finally, I added wheels to the snow blower, just waiting for snow. In fact if we ever get snow, it's going to take a day just to try out the 318 plow, 318 blower, and the 4520 front blade with 9" and 12" wheels to know what works.

Pete
 

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Interesting link. It brings to mind one of my favorite sayings:

"Great men think alike, and fools seldom differ."

Let's hope this is the former and not the latter...:mocking:

tnx for the link, if this is a bad idea then at least crazy likes company.

Pete
 
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Discussion Starter #19
I added some gussets to the holders as Kenny suggested.

When Kenny suggest something, you can either:
a) Ignore Kenny, break something, fix it, then listen :nunu:
or
b) Listen and do what Kenny says. :thumbup1gif:

Here's the pix of the fortified holder. I took 3 washers out after this pix, the bottom of the wheel holder is now at the same height off the ground as the front of the plow blade. The "tilt" part of the front loader is used to tweak the height so that the bottom of the wheel holder and the bottom of the plow are the same. We got 2" of snow last night, but it's not enough to test anything.

Also bought chains from the 4520, they cost a bit more and are a bit heavier than the chains for my 318. Still need to order the "grown man" tension-er for them, I think this is too big for a rubber tarp bungee and tie-wraps like I used on the 318.

Pete
 

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When Kenny suggest something, you can either:
a) Ignore Kenny, break something, fix it, then listen :nunu:
or
b) Listen and do what Kenny says. :thumbup1gif:

I will PM you wife's email, please let her know that ASAP :lol:
 
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