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John Deere X350 snow traction issues/snow blower Login/Join 
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Weights at the rear wheels and on the rear hitch make an incredible difference. It is a relatively small machine, but I could feel the improvement on my JD from the weights along with the tire chains. They made my JD feel like a little tank. In fact, since my property had a number of banked terraces, I left the wheel weights on during all seasons since they improved stability and traction when mowing grass on the hills.

I would think that you have the right set-up for snow with a powered snow blower on the front. The angled snow plow on the front is totally worthless as it just pushes the front tires sideways and off track. No amount of weight will help this condition.

Best of luck!
 
Posts: 157 | Location: Central PA | Registered: November 11, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
paradox in a box
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I’m completely dismayed. The snowblower couldn’t do anything last night. It didn’t go 5 feet and was stuck. I made the mistake of raising it while it was on. Well that shredded the belt. This morning my ATV was almost useless with another 10” of wet heavy snow. I got my Subaru out with a lot of effort. Calling a plow guy now. I’m gonna try to sell the Deere snowblower and buy a Toro walk behind.




These go to eleven.
 
Posts: 10161 | Location: Westminster, MA | Registered: November 14, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I'm just a little bit West of you... I used a setup like that for years. As everyone said, you need weight - wheel weights, rear weights, and I made an "outrigger" to get additional weight (lead filled ammo box) farther back to counterbalance the blower. These lawn tractor-mount setups with a belt drive are problematic. The first time the belt slips, it gets stretched and is probably toast. Technique counts for a lot too. Full RPM always - go glacially slow for the first pass, then take 1/2 passes and try never to blow snow "twice".

You are probably better off with a large walk-behind unless you are going to go "all-in" with a 4wd tractor and front-mounted PTO driven blower. Even then - chains, loaded tires and weights may be necessary. My current setup still requires chains on all 4 wheels for my steep driveway.


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Posts: 861 | Location: Greenfield, MA USA | Registered: May 13, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by MaSigchist:
Technique counts for a lot too. Full RPM always - go glacially slow for the first pass, then take 1/2 passes and try never to blow snow "twice".

Sage advice right there....First time I've ever had any serious difficulty, but I 'learned' that lesson yesterday! And whatever you do, absolutely NEVER try to blow snow three times! Wink

Obviously the first time out/first storm of the season is always a bit more challenging as I'm a little rusty on technique but my 32" Simplicity (a P1732 Signature Pro) typically powers through anything! Well, yesterday was an exception as temperature changes and an extremely packable snow led to serious traction issues! I have a couple of challenges with my driveway configuration as I can't throw the snow as far as I want due to a neighbors fence/property line that's 10' from the edge of my driveway on the downhill side, which is where I need to deposit the majority of the snow. Add to that another twist with a new Basketball Goal that I was trying to avoid, which forced me to blow the same snow a couple/few times in one area. Let's just say it didn't go well yesterday! Hopefully I'll have better luck with the second wave of this storm when it's all over a little later today... Wink

OP - It seems that your first storm in the new house was (and likely continues to be) a particularly challenging trial by fire. I feel your pain as I too live on the side of a small mountain. In my case I'm forced to throw the vast majority of the snow downhill to avoid the glare ice that would result from the snowmelt if I were to blow/shovel it anywhere else....Something I learned during my first winter here. Another challenge is the prevailing winds which generally blow in the opposite direction I need to blow the snow, unless of course they're blowing in eleven different directions as they seem to do sometimes.... Roll Eyes

Good Luck this winter!


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Posts: 3450 | Location: New Hampshire | Registered: October 29, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have a JD X530 with a 48-inch plow and I have the 47-inch snowblower as well. I am able to hang 5 42lb suitcase weights on the back, and I filled the tires with 8 gallons of windshield washer fluid in each tire. In total it adds up to approximately 325lbs of extra weight over the back wheels, it pushes real good even without chains. But something doesn't sound right with your setup, seems like it should be working better than it is. Are the skid shoes lower than the scraper blade? That should cause the snowblower to have less ground contact making it easier for the tractor to push. As everyone said, weight is your friend. My father had a small JD from Home Depot, a D110 with a 44-inch blower. It worked pretty well with Terra-Grip chains and the rear tires filled with washer fluid. The addition of the Terra-Grips and washer fluid made a big difference. I think I got about 5 gallons in each tire, which totals about an extra 80lbs.
 
Posts: 205 | Registered: June 25, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Age Quod Agis
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If you have a new Deere, call the Deere dealer and ask about what's going on. I had a friend with a steep driveway in middle Massachusetts with a 48 inch Craftsman blower on a 25 hp. Craftsman tractor and it kicked ass.

Something sounds amiss, and you might be able to save your setup.

Good luck.



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Posts: 10336 | Location: Central Florida | Registered: November 02, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
paradox in a box
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I’m waiting on the dealer to call. I told them I want to sell this back. I’m about ready to jump on a Toro 928. Had the 826 before and loved it. We will see what the dealer says.




These go to eleven.
 
Posts: 10161 | Location: Westminster, MA | Registered: November 14, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The belt should not have shredded by lifting the blower. Something is not correct. Your dealer should be able to help you out.
 
Posts: 3180 | Location: PA | Registered: November 15, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by marc308:
I have a JD X530 with a 48-inch plow and I have the 47-inch snowblower as well. I am able to hang 5 42lb suitcase weights on the back, and I filled the tires with 8 gallons of windshield washer fluid in each tire. In total it adds up to approximately 325lbs of extra weight over the back wheels, it pushes real good even without chains. But something doesn't sound right with your setup, seems like it should be working better than it is. Are the skid shoes lower than the scraper blade? That should cause the snowblower to have less ground contact making it easier for the tractor to push. As everyone said, weight is your friend. My father had a small JD from Home Depot, a D110 with a 44-inch blower. It worked pretty well with Terra-Grip chains and the rear tires filled with washer fluid. The addition of the Terra-Grips and washer fluid made a big difference. I think I got about 5 gallons in each tire, which totals about an extra 80lbs.
.

Marc the 5 series Deere has the rear end lock up button?
 
Posts: 2314 | Registered: March 22, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Yes, it does. It's pretty capable without the locker, pretty impressive with it...
 
Posts: 205 | Registered: June 25, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by petr:
The belt should not have shredded by lifting the blower. Something is not correct. Your dealer should be able to help you out.


I agree, there's something not right it shouldn't shred a belt running it with the blower lifted.
 
Posts: 1391 | Location: MN | Registered: March 29, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by ArtieS:
If you have a 3pt hitch, the Redneck way to do it is to fill a 5 gallon bucket, or somewhat bigger barrel (depending on the weight you need) with concrete, with a rebar passed through it to go on the 3 point. That adds a lot of weight for cheap.


I had an old Sears garden tractor that had a ball hitch tab on. What I did was use a five gallon bucket and position a very long bolt through the corner of the bucket at an angle that allowed me to tighten the bolt on the hitch clearing all surfaces of the tractor. I then filled the bucket 3/4 with cement after it was fully cured I trimmed the excess off the bucket. The driveway was asphalt and has a steep approach. Worked well but even with that I had to snow blow down hill raise the blower up to climb the slope.


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Posts: 3789 | Location: Home is where the tires are touching, Making our way to Surprise, AZ for the Winter | Registered: October 20, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by frayedends:
I’m completely dismayed. The snowblower couldn’t do anything last night. It didn’t go 5 feet and was stuck. I made the mistake of raising it while it was on. Well that shredded the belt. This morning my ATV was almost useless with another 10” of wet heavy snow. I got my Subaru out with a lot of effort. Calling a plow guy now. I’m gonna try to sell the Deere snowblower and buy a Toro walk behind.


Definitely something wrong with your setup. Belt should be clear and free of anything that would shred it in any position. So look at the routing of the belt according to the manual paying attention to any idler pulley and the way the belt sits on it. Then if there is any tabs that are designed to keep the belt in place while it is slack they should be positioned aligned with the belt track. As said above your blower should have skid pads and they need to be set so the scraping bar is just above the surface 1/8- 1/4 of an inch.


ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ
 
Posts: 3789 | Location: Home is where the tires are touching, Making our way to Surprise, AZ for the Winter | Registered: October 20, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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As others have addressed weight, I'll throw in my .02.
Make sure the shear pins are in and the augers are being driven, not just spinning loose.
If the augers are not bringing the snow to the impeller you will get nowhere real fast.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: PeteF,
 
Posts: 665 | Location: New Jersey | Registered: August 16, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Yokel
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quote:
Originally posted by mcrimm:
The tires on my Kubota are filled with Rimguard. At 11 lbs per gallon, they are heavy. My front mount snowblower runs right through the deepest snow.


What mcrimm said.

or wheel weights. Have someone stand on the rear drawbar hitch if you need the plowing done now, deflate the tires some so they flatten a bit giving more area of contact with chains to the ground.



Beware the man who only has one gun. He probably knows how to use it! - John Steinbeck
 
Posts: 3644 | Location: Vallejo, CA | Registered: August 18, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
paradox in a box
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I've decided not to mess with this thing anymore. No point in adding weight, filling tires, replacing belt and then hoping it works on the next storm.

Deere dealer called. They will take it back and sell it for me. They said I can expect 80% return on what I paid. I'll take the loss.

I'm gonna grab a Toro Powermax 928 this weekend. Had an 826 for years and it was great so I have no reservations on getting this.




These go to eleven.
 
Posts: 10161 | Location: Westminster, MA | Registered: November 14, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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If you need a tractor for your property, take a look at Case/Ingersoll. Plenty of used ones out there.

Here is a video of mine in action.

https://youtu.be/Ncmt3SsXVSM
 
Posts: 3180 | Location: PA | Registered: November 15, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
paradox in a box
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Originally posted by petr:
If you need a tractor for your property, take a look at Case/Ingersoll. Plenty of used ones out there.

Here is a video of mine in action.

https://youtu.be/Ncmt3SsXVSM


I’m happy with the John Deere x350 for all my summer stuff. I won’t be buying another tractor. I think I jumped the gun on the snowblower because it looks so cool and strong. In the end I’ll be happy with a walk behind. I can fit one in the garage with my car so that’s a plus. I’m losing some cash but it’s not horrible.




These go to eleven.
 
Posts: 10161 | Location: Westminster, MA | Registered: November 14, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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