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  1. #1
    Platinum Member Shawk's Avatar
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    Nov 2005
    Posts
    540
    Location
    Iowa
    Tractor
    John Deere 2305 w/R4's, ROPS rear and front lights

    Default Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    I'm curious who's using what to remove snow... I used a JD 425 w/54" blade to clear my old drive (approx 200' drive plus parking in front of garage-rock drive). I've moved and now have a shorter drive which is only about 100' x 12' lane & approximately 40' in width in front of the garage. I bought a JD 2210 (love it) this fall w/FEL but also plan to get something to clear the snow. I had full intentions on getting the front blade but see many guys here use rear blades as well. I love the hands on use of the front blade w/hydraulics but a 1/3 of the cost can get a decent rear blade.... I think for the limited amount of "free" time I have during the winter months the FEL would take far to long.... so help me out please... [img]/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif[/img]

    Tell me what you have and how much you clear with it.... any regrets with your purchases?? Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Super Member RobS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Posts
    6,234
    Location
    SW Michigan
    Tractor
    John Deere 790

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    The front blade has lots of advantages including being able to see what you're doing without straining your neck and plowing the snow before your tires pack it down. The big downside is the cost. Rear blades have common, tph mounts and can be had pretty cheap.

    Over the years I've used front blades, rear blades, FELs and a front snowblower (lawn tractor sized). I've never used a rear blower. I'd rate the front blower best, then the front blade, then the rear blade and lastly the FEL. A lot of this depends on your drive and amount of snow. I currently have a rear blade but wouldn't have it without the FEL [img]/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]

  3. #3
    Silver Member ruglad03835's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    152
    Location
    Farmington, NH
    Tractor
    790

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    I'm in the process of adapting a 7' Fisher blade to the loader on my 790 tractor. I got the blade for free. The most expensive part of the deal will be a Fasse Diverter valve for the power angle. I agree with Rob S about neck strain. My other concern with a rear blade is how effectively it will move 12-24" of snow. I get one storm like that every couple of years.

  4. #4
    Super Star Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    11,504
    Location
    Upper Midwest USA
    Tractor
    JD 4300, JD X485 JD 4x2 Gator, JD 425, JD455

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    Start out with the bucket and see how you like it. May not be bad enough that you would need to spend the $$ on something else. But suit yourself, [img]/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

  5. #5
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    375
    Location
    Near Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
    Tractor
    John Deere 990 4x4

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    <font color="blue">My other concern with a rear blade is how effectively it will move 12-24" of snow.</font>

    Last winter I had to clear a path through our field with my 990 using the FEL and 7' rear blade. It would have been close to 24" of snow which had been untouched until I went through it. I just lowered the loader and rear blade and drove through. The loader cleared part of the snow and the rear blade most of the rest in one pass. The snow just spills off to each side as you muscle your way through. There were a couple of spots where I started spinning and came to a halt (even with 4WD and the diff lock engaged), but a bit of reverse to release some of the build up and away I went again. I was quite impressed with how much snow I could move in one pass with both the loader and blade lowered.

    I've never noticed a problem with the tires packing the snow too much for the rear blade, and once you fill the space between the blade and tractor with snow, it pretty much just starts spilling off to the sides. Of course heavy wet snow will be more problematic, but it would be no matter what you use.

    One thing you will want/need is LOTS of weight for traction. I have all four tires filled and the tractor still has more power than traction.

  6. #6
    Elite Member RalphVa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    3,791
    Location
    Charlottesville, VA, USA
    Tractor
    JD 1025, previously Gravely 5650 & JD 4010

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    This will be my first season with a rear blade in addition to my FEL on the 4010. The FEL worked fine last winter such that I never used my Gravely with its 48" blade and have finally sold it. The Frontier rear blade was about $250. Any front blades were quite expensive. They would be quite low cost if they'd just make them clip onto the front of the FEL assembly where the bucket is clipped on with 2 clips and 2 U rests. Just make it manual swing like my rear blade is and don't worry about the consequences of my hitting something with the blade and possibly doing damage. Most of the high cost of front snow blades is some spring mounting, etc. to spring the blade if you hit something pretty solid at the end of it.

    My Gravely blade just mounted solidly onto where the PTO jutted out and had a couple holes for tilting the blade to either side.

    The main problem with the FEL only is that it loads up and requires you to raise it, turn to the side, etc. It's more effective just using it for tight spaces like around a garage where you end up with no where for a snow blade to push the snow.

    I plan to use the rear blade turned around and run the tractor backwards for most of the driveway. In those tigher areas in the turnaround area between my 2 garage buildings, I'll probably use the FEL.

    Ralph

  7. #7
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    462
    Location
    western NY
    Tractor
    MF GC2300

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( I plan to use the rear blade turned around and run the tractor backwards for most of the driveway.)</font>

    This is how I did it most of last winter. By my own admission, I'd have to say I was a little...what's the word, starts with "a"?? I was trying to get as much snow off before driving on it.

    This past storm, using progressively heavier weight on the rear blade, I spun it backwards so it was hitting the snow with the convex side, and drove foreward. I angled the blade so the snow would roll off the side. Although I drove over the snow before the blade hit it, I got most of the snow off. It actually worked pretty slick, and MUCH quicker than the way I used to do it. Just another option for using the rear blade without gouging up your driveway.

  8. #8
    Super Member ronjhall's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    7,226
    Location
    SE Michigan, TX when its cold in MI.
    Tractor
    Kubota 2910 HST

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    <font color="blue"> I think for the limited amount of "free" time I have during the winter months the FEL would take far to long </font>
    Depending on how much snow you have to move. 24" can be moved very fast with a front blade. My tractor is a little larger than yours. I have a 6 1/2' blade mounted to my FEL. It moves snow very fast. My 250' of drive can be cleared in about 30 minutes. Here is a link to pictures posted on TBN. Click Here
    I have a 6' rear blade. It is used mostly for weight.

  9. #9
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Posts
    743
    Tractor
    John Deere 3320

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    The pictures in my Sig link will show 2-3 shots of a JD 3320 with 300X loader mounted 72" blade with hydrolic angling. I just got it and will use it for the first time this year.

  10. #10
    Platinum Member Shawk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    540
    Location
    Iowa
    Tractor
    John Deere 2305 w/R4's, ROPS rear and front lights

    Default Re: Front blade or rear blade for your compact/snow

    Thanks for the replys... please keep 'em coming...

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