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  1. #1
    Platinum Member dourobob's Avatar
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    Default Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    Many have said that the ideas are cheap, it's the implementation that is the killer. I am just at the noodling stage here and I did the search and read on TBN about the folks attempting to do this conversion but, I have a few, very basic, questions that I could not find answers for on TBN - at least not yet.
    I have a 45 HP 4WD tractor with a slightly oversized FEL and a currently rear mounted snowblower. As my neck and shoulders age (along with the rest of me) I would surely like to move this blower to the front of the tractor. Can anyone who has researched this possibility give me any guidelines or references. As I see it now I would look at either of two options: (a) a hydraulic motor to run the blower or (b) a separately mounted motor (10, 15, ?? HP). My current blower is 72" wide, and single auger.
    What size (a) hydraulic motor (tractor hydraulic pump is rated around 12 - 14 GPM) or (b) gas engine would be appropriate?
    Any ideas? Anything additional options I should be considering? (Apart from paying some else to remove snow [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
    Thanks
    Bob

  2. #2
    Silver Member
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    Dec 2000
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    Mid, Michigan
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    TC25D

    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    Hi,
    If I have time this summer, I'm going to look at converting my new blower. I'm having problems finding the thread I wanted to pass on to you. Our firewall at work isn't allowing me to follow all of the links. But I believe it was from here.
    I have a habit of pulling down pictures for reference and then forgetting where I got them. Attached is a setup from a company who allows 3pt attachments on the front via a drive shaft from the rear PTO. They didn't list any TC's. I just want to purchase their 3 pt setup and fab the rest. I'll update later if I can find the link.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3
    Silver Member
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    TC25D

    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    Picture from the front side.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  4. #4
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    South Bend, Indiana (near)
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    Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year

    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    Here's a linkl to a gas powered one at Northern Tool. Sit down, first... it is expensive. You'll have to click the link to see how expensive... if I post it, it might cause widespread fainting. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img]

  5. #5
    Platinum Member dourobob's Avatar
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    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    Thanks for this Mike - the TBN link worked (it is the one I already checked).
    Your pictures present an interesting approach and certainly eliminate driveshaft breakage concerns. Would need to remove the FEL though. Any idea what the price tag is for that unit and where it is available?? Is it a hydraulic drive for the blower? Also, as it is on a 2WD tractor I am guessing a big rear weight would be needed to have any traction at all.
    Keep us posted on your progress.

    Bob

  6. #6
    Platinum Member dourobob's Avatar
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    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    You're right David, that puppy is pretty pricey - and it's on sale [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img]

    Bob

  7. #7
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    Ford 960, 7700, TW20, 1720; IHC H, 300; Ollie S77

    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    1. You're sure you don't have a mid-pto on your tractor? Ok, ok, just had to ask.... [img]/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

    2. As you note on the link, it takes a good 25-30 hp, even a bit more, to drive a good sized snow blower like you have. Not many tractors supply that much power through the hyd pump. If they do, it builds up heat quickly, & you will probably need to add some oil coolers. Running with oil steals about 1/3 of your hp, so does your tractor run the blower with ease now, or is it sized about right? Assuming 12 gpm & about 2000# pressure, your current pump will only do about 15 hp, and at that you will heat things up fast on a constant load like an orbit motor, have power losses, etc. The orbit motor will be several hundreds of bucks. Kinda trying to say, hydraulic is not the way to go on a tractor for a high-power item. Works with skid steers, because they are narrower (smaller blower), & have a whopping big hyd pump with lots of oil cooling.....

    3. The pictures in the one message showing the front mounting & the jack shaft under the tractor is pretty common, but runs about $3-5,000 for the conversion, Lots of extra work to mount them.

    4. Can't much use a pto shaft to power a blower on your loader arms, as you will make a pretzel out of the pto shaft.

    5. You could probably configure a ~25 hp engine & mount it all on your loader arms. Will take some work, & make your tractor very heavy up front, but you have 4wd. You'll have to get 2 engines running every time you need to blow.

    6. 3pt starts to look pretty good....... [img]/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

    --->Paul

  8. #8
    Veteran Member
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    JD 4100 HST

    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    Another alternative would be to add a dedicated PTO-driven pump and hoses to run a hydraulic motor to turn the snowblower. Assuming you never want to run the blower in reverse, you could skip the control valves (except you still might want a pressure relief) and use the PTO clutch to start/stop.

    So the hydraulic parts would be:

    PTO pump $500?
    Resevoir $100
    Filter (attach directly to resevoir) $50
    Hoses from back top front. ) $100
    Suction hose. $10
    Pressure relief valve $50?
    Hyd motor. $250?

    Total = $1060.

    Just make sure the resevoir is big enough to cool enough for the blower HP.

    You could put the resevoir and pump on a small frame that sits on the 3-point with a drive shaft from the PTO.


    Or, you could put a series of shafts from the back to the front. Personally, I DO think this would be the cheapest way to go.

    You will have to deal with reversing the spin direction with a gear in the drivetrain because the blower is facing the other direction, but at least the speed is correct from the 540 back PTO vs some other speed mid PTO.

    Copy the front mount system off of a tractor that has a front blower...

    - Rick


  9. #9
    Platinum Member dourobob's Avatar
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    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( 1. You're sure you don't have a mid-pto on your tractor? Ok, ok, just had to ask.... [img]/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img])</font>
    Sure wish I did!

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( 2. As you note on the link, it takes a good 25-30 hp, even a bit more, to drive a good sized snow blower like you have. .... Running with oil steals about 1/3 of your hp, so does your tractor run the blower with ease now, or is it sized about right? )</font>

    It seems about right

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( Assuming 12 gpm &amp; about 2000# pressure, your current pump will only do ... Kinda trying to say, hydraulic is not the way to go on a tractor for a high-power item. )</font>

    Sure seems that way

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( 3. The pictures in the one message showing the front mounting &amp; the jack shaft under the tractor is pretty common, but runs about $3-5,000 for the conversion, Lots of extra work to mount them.)</font>

    Lotsa work and once again - pricey! [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img]

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( 4. Can't much use a pto shaft to power a blower on your loader arms, as you will make a pretzel out of the pto shaft.)</font>

    and limiter chains are a PITA.

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( 5. You could probably configure a ~25 hp engine &amp; mount it all on your loader arms. Will take some work, &amp; make your tractor very heavy up front, but you have 4wd. You'll have to get 2 engines running every time you need to blow.)</font>

    Sounds like an awful lot more than I had originally envisioned.

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( 6. 3pt starts to look pretty good....... [img]/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img])</font>

    A lot better than it did after I got home from my chiropractor after having blown snow for a few hours last week. Maybe I just need to recognize the inconvenience, do more exercise so the muscles don't react so violently and perhaps, just perhaps, I can practice backing up while using a large set of customized mirrors [img]/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]

    As I said in the beginning, it is the ideas that are the cheapest part.

    Thanks for the great feedback. And KEENEY - I am going scrounging in a hydraulics graveyard in a month or two - I'll take your list with me - never know what might be adapted.

    Bob

  10. #10
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    Default Re: Converting a Snowblower to front mount (help)

    Not to push another tractor sale or anything, but this is one of the reasons that I was drawn to the Power Tracs. All the implements mount up front on the loader arms where you can see them. My back is much happier than when I was using my 3pt hitch on my traditional tractor. No driveshafts as all the powered implements are hydraulically powered. Quick attach keeps me from having to horse around heavy implements. It really is a good system for those with bad backs.

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