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Discussion Starter #1
I am thinking about adding a new 48" tiller something along the lines of a Deere 647 or similar. Is anyone familiar with these smaller width units or a competing unit? I want a heavy duty unit in a narrow width. Need this to get the tight spots in my customer yards, I have a 673 for my 4520 already.

The other thing I am looking into is snow blades and blowers, this would be for driveways and sidewalks. I confess that snow equipment is where I am the most ignorant. We tend to get several snows a year that are 3 to 6 inches and on occasion we have 12 to 24 inches over 24 hours, that isn't normal though.

Has anyone compared the Frontier equipment closely to the Deere branded stuff?
 

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My father has an 1157 tiller. I know its a touch larger than what your looking at, but it seems like a well built tiller. It does not compare to my 673, but it does not need to. IMHO the smaller Frontier lines are good, but they are all made by Machio (sp) so I would look at buying one of those direct rather than paying for the green paint.
 

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The other thing I am looking into is snow blades and blowers, this would be for driveways and sidewalks. I confess that snow equipment is where I am the most ignorant. We tend to get several snows a year that are 3 to 6 inches and on occasion we have 12 to 24 inches over 24 hours, that isn't normal though.

Has anyone compared the Frontier equipment closely to the Deere branded stuff?
Snow Removal Equipment...NOW We talking....what exactly do you have in mind? You want a rear PTO blower, front blower? Or rather use a blade? I hate to make my reccomendations and its not what you had in mind.

Frontier vs Deere...I've compared a few, and honestly, almost every time I think I'd choose Frontier...
Tiller...Without knowing EVERYTHING as to your justifcation of a Deere tiller, I'd probably suggest a KKII, seems to me from everything I've read they are cheap and bullet proof.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Brian,
When you say it doesn't compare to the 673 could you be more specific? I have been considering the 647 because it appears to be comparable to the 673.
 

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I would look at buying one of those direct rather than paying for the green paint.
Common misconception...
Case in point, Frontier SB1174 Blower = RAD/Blizzard B74. I coulda bought the Frontier for 50 bucks CHEAPER then my OEM version...I wouldnt make a blanket statement saying the JD Green ones are more expensive. I know for me, whether its a Rear Blade, Snowblower or Power Rake, the Frontier units at my dealer are usually same if not cheaper priced then the OEM branded ones.

Personally it p'ed me off to no extent...I'd rather have a Green blower then a Red one...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Dave,
I was considering the possibility of a front blade and or broom with a rear blower ultimately. Just don't know how much trouble it is to change between the blade and broom. After clearing the bulk of the snow a broom might be real handy for the walkways.

The first thing my dealer said was to consider using the 4520 cab for this work. My issue here is transporting the larger tractor in inclement weather seems to be a higher risk for accidents.
 

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Brian,
When you say it doesn't compare to the 673 could you be more specific? I have been considering the 647 because it appears to be comparable to the 673.
The 1157 is a Frontier model and most of the guards on it have broke. Its an offset tiller so it has a few guards off the main gear box that cover the floating shaft. They sit and vibrate until they brake. They need to be held in with more than one bolt.

The tines on it do not seem to wear as well. My 673 takes care of a ton of hard packed ground and the tines look fairly new. The tines on the 1157 are looking fairly rough for only taking care of a small garden. I think it has to do with the hardness of the material used. Also, the chain on the 1157 is a bit smaller than the 673, but it has less to move also. Your talking about comparing a 1200 pound machine with a 600 pound machine. There are serious differences.

Common misconception...
Case in point, Frontier SB1174 Blower = RAD/Blizzard B74. I coulda bought the Frontier for 50 bucks CHEAPER then my OEM version...I wouldnt make a blanket statement saying the JD Green ones are more expensive. I know for me, whether its a Rear Blade, Snowblower or Power Rake, the Frontier units at my dealer are usually same if not cheaper priced then the OEM branded ones.

Personally it p'ed me off to no extent...I'd rather have a Green blower then a Red one...
It might be true in that case Dave, but when we went looking we could get the Machio tiller for about 300 less than the Frontier. There is no questioning who makes the frontier tiller when you take it apart, everything is labeled maschio! So I am sorry, I was not trying to make a blanket statement, just letting everyone know my experience with Frontier and Machio.

Snow...

I have a 47" snow blower for the front of my 445. I would only go with a front blower on that machine! They have a nice QA for up there and you will have to buy it to put the broom on. You would switch between your broom and snowblower as fast as you could a QA three point item. I would also be unsure about turning a rear blower with that size of tractor. There is not a ton of weight in the front.

Hope that helps.
 

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Dave,
I was considering the possibility of a front blade and or broom with a rear blower ultimately. Just don't know how much trouble it is to change between the blade and broom. After clearing the bulk of the snow a broom might be real handy for the walkways.

Yep, great plan. Personally I'm on the same page as you...I use my FEL Mounted blade to backdrag snow away from the buildings to where I can grab it with the blower. I think its an awesome setup...Not a fan of front blowers for a few reasons.
Rear blower...I'd personally reccomend the SB1154...now, you COULD go with the SB1148, but the 54 gives you more width, and more importantly, a 24" fan...
http://www.deere.com/en_US/ag/media/pdf/frontier/snow_removal/DSFE41080_Snowblwr_3pt.pdf

NOW, a word of caution....I personally would never snowblow anybody else's driveway...when my city slicker neighbor calls me, I always plow. Reason being, I'd hate to catch something in the blower like a Cinder Block, large rock or even worse, a length of chain or rope...Seen it happen...one of my friends sucked in a dog rope which was tied to an over head leader....blower sucked that rope & chain in so quick...pulled the anchor off the house, trashed the blower...etc).

The first thing my dealer said was to consider using the 4520 cab for this work. My issue here is transporting the larger tractor in inclement weather seems to be a higher risk for accidents.
LOL, I proably wouldnt ever snowblow without a cab...blading isnt too bad. Snowblowing...often times I see one of my neighbors down the road snowblowing...he's dressed like an eskimo and looks like frosty the snowman when he's done. BUT, your point of transport is valid...cant say I'd want to hit the roads in those conditions with the 4520 on your trailer...
 

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It might be true in that case Dave, but when we went looking we could get the Machio tiller for about 300 less than the Frontier. There is no questioning who makes the frontier tiller when you take it apart, everything is labeled maschio! So I am sorry, I was not trying to make a blanket statement, just letting everyone know my experience with Frontier and Machio.
I guess I'm helping YOU out here :lol:...but another thing to think about is nothing says the Frontier will be a Machio next year...So from that standpoint, yeah, going OEM might be wiser...
Even for a 300.00 difference, I'd probably still buy the Frontier for a few reasons...Mainly the Dealer.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
So far I have only had two tillers, the 673 and the Howard HR4 both have been good, never had a KK anything. Anyone see any problems with just getting a 647 and calling it good?

About the debris on the driveways, the only ones I wan't to clear are for the customers that I maintain their yards year round. These are vacation homes with no one at home the majority of the time, so I tend to have control of what is in or on the driveways. Yes I am a litlle fearful of finding objects out of place though and Dave you make a good point.
 

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If you go LP, go reverse rotation. If I could change one thing on my tiller (At the price I paid, I shouldnt complain)....its I'd like Reverse Rotation.
Yup, I really like mine.:yahoo:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Guys,
While I like reverse rotation in known ground it is a bad choice where you are operating in someone elses yard. A forward rotation tiller is better because it tends to climb over objects like rocks, roots and buried steel pipes.

I do like Landpride and Woods equipment though. For tilling your own garden a reverse rotation is great.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Any one have an idea of how much snow can be removed with one of the brooms?

Just trying to decide how much of this stuff I need, my main issue is not damaging the surface and leaving a clean surface. I have little experience with any of this snow equipment. The blower looks good IF I have a place to blow the snow, the blade looks good for light snows and the broom looks good for cleaning up the sidewalks. This isn't something I am looking forward to, just need to keep the customers happy.

What are the best uses for the snowblower, broom and blade? What are the limitations of each.
 

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Any one have an idea of how much snow can be removed with one of the brooms?
Yes I do, I can easily do about three inches of snow with the broom. Snow types (wet vs dry) do react a little differently but the end result is the same. You start getting over three inches then definetly the blower is the weapon of choice. The brush cleans right down to bare pavement. After the blower I will do a follow up with the brush.
 

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Any one have an idea of how much snow can be removed with one of the brooms?

Just trying to decide how much of this stuff I need, my main issue is not damaging the surface and leaving a clean surface. I have little experience with any of this snow equipment. The blower looks good IF I have a place to blow the snow, the blade looks good for light snows and the broom looks good for cleaning up the sidewalks. This isn't something I am looking forward to, just need to keep the customers happy.

What are the best uses for the snowblower, broom and blade? What are the limitations of each.
We use both here in Michigan. I agree with Randy also, anything less than 3"s you can broom it. If you are working on peoples drives that are asphalt, then a broom might be your best weapon. There is very little chance of gouging or breaking stuff up. Sidewalks are also a great place for a broom IF they are unlevel as it will not catch on a high side. But, the broom, like a plow, creates a pile and the pile will drift over faster.

Most companies around here blow the driveways then broom them to perfection. If you leave just a little bit of snow on dark concrete or asphalt, it will melt and turn to ice. I have no clue how high end your customers are, but you might want to consider it.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks Randy, I was wondering if the combination of a blower and broom would be enough. Just concerned that in tight spaces it is hard to find a place to blow the snow.

Really hoping I don't need to move the larger tractors in to do snow work.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Guess I need to make the calls on the front quick hitch, broom and blower. My other thought was to put a small rear blade on the back for counterweight and puling the snow away from the buildings.

The good thing is in New Mexico most of the snow is light powder. Our humidity can get very low so most of the time it is a dry cold.

Brian, several of my customers have their own jets so they wan't it done right.:thumbup1gif:
 

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My other thought was to put a small rear blade on the back for counterweight and puling the snow away from the buildings.
That might be a good option for you. I do not have that need, but your requirements are always changing. I just use the ballast box for my added traction. You will need some extra weight though.
 
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