Extending the usefulness of an OLD snowblower

Frankenblower vs Mother Earth- season 2.

SNOW 1  –  FRANKENBLOWER 0

I made it through last winter with the Frankenblower as is.  “As is” from what I can tell is 3rd or 4th hand.  As you can see from the pic, it’s pretty damn old, and appears to be made out of metal salvaged from a WWII heavy crusier…  But, the neighbor I bought it from is an engineer extraordinaire, so  despite its obvious age and jerry-rigging, I’m pretty confident a strong machine.

A couple weeks ago, we get about 16″ of heavy wet snow.  Now, the Honda engine started fairly decently despite sitting neglected almost a year, and I really didnt do any maintenance to it at all, my bad.  Only problem with starting was that the choke lever got a little bent in one part so I had to trace the movement along until I found a lever that appeared like it wanted to slide a certain way.  O_o   Well, I slid the lerver in that certain way, yanked the starter cord, and voilla, I had a running engine.  Impressive. 

Yes, this is the extent of my troubleshooting skills, trace and fiddle.  It works with programming and apparently with small engines as well.

But things just got worse.  Me and Frankenblower got our butts kicked by this storm.  

 

PROBLEMS

1) My right tire had completely deflated over the year… (Mental note, don’t be a lazy sod and at least check on the snowblower once during the summer).  So, you can picture this heavy beast continuously pushing to the right, with me fighting it to stay straight, all in heavy wet snow.

2) The chute kept CLOGGING!! wtf!?! didnt happen at all last winter.  was there no what snow last year?? Possibly.  

SOLUTIONS 

1) have a deflated tire??  don’t want to invest in a heavy duty air pump yet?

I bought this baby off of amazon.  For a small portable air compressor it really kicks @ss. It’s cheap ($20), lightweight, small and comes with a long cable, maybe 15′.  Only drawback is it needs to plug into a car cigarette lighter outlet.  Not a problem, and since it was cheap, I consider it a very easy experiment.  It filled the completely deflated tire in less than a minute, and topped off the left one as well.  There is no air tank, so it has to be running to pump air – it won’t be a problem for the intended use.  Not sure if I can somehow rig it up to my spray gun for working on models though.  That would just be the ultimate victory.

Hopefully the compressor lasts a while, and I get some use on the car and bycicle tires as well.  It comes with some nozzles for inflating kids toys, footballs etc as well… no chance to use them yet

      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000642GAW/ref=oss_product

Also, just bit the bullet and bought some snowblower tire chains as well.  The defeat at the hands of the last storm put me in such a fould mood that I am willing to ‘splurge’ and give the chains a try – from what the neighbor says it makes a huge difference, especially on slopes… which I have

      http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001M1WQBM/ref=oss_product 

2) Snow chute keeps getting clogged with snow?  They say spray the chute with WD40, or PAM cooking spray of all things.  Can’t say for sure, but will give it a try during the next storm.

 

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