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View Full Version : Next project done, snowplow



Evan
08-11-2007, 12:33 AM
Well, almost done. I need to find some small hood springs for the blade "toe stubbing" system and need to make a separate blade lift handle. Other than that it is done. It's a blade for my lawn tractor to act as a backup for the Land Rover and to do jobs the Rover can't.

The Rover is 48 years old and has never had an engine or transmission rebuild. I get nervous when we have a good dump of snow because if the Rover dies it could be very difficult for us. I have about 300 feet of driveway and the total area of the drive is about half an acre. It isn't possible to shovel it

So, I have spent the last few days building a blade with both manual lift and angle adjustments. The entire assembly weighs only about 65 lbs but is plenty strong. It is also well protected against damage in the event of hitting something.

It has shear pins and shear bolts that protect against impacts both at the blade ends and head on. It has a blade tip system if it "stubs it's toe".

The blade itself is made from the remains of my old compressor tank and reinforced with angle iron top and bottom edges. Can anybody guess what the curved ribs are from?

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/trac1.jpg

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/trac2.jpg

In this next pic you can see the pins (bolts for now) that are used to set the blade angle. It has 5 positions, straight and 2 angles either side. The bolts will be replaced with 1/2" aluminum shear pins as soon as I make them. The bungee is an expedient until I find some suitable return springs. The entire blade assembly can be removed in a minute or two by removing the two pivot bolts just beside each front tire at the bottom of the bumper rack.

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/trac3.jpg



Some safety features: The black lift lever as seen in the upper pic below is designed so that it can lift the blade but if the blade is lifted by something else it doesn't move the lever. The mounting frame with the bumper bars is held in place to the chassis with two bolts per side. The chassis is reinforced with two plates of 3/16 4130 plate on each side. The frame is mounted using a lower grade eight bolt and a upper grade three bolt on each side (currently just grade 3). If something is hit hard dead ahead the frame will shear the grade three bolts and swing back at the bottom. This prevents damage to the blade and the tractor.

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/trac4.jpg


Right now the lift lever is attached to the deck engage handle but will soon have it's own handle. This machine is far more maneuverable than the Rover and will be able to shove around dirt and gravel too. I am also going to make a more suitable hood for the front to make maintenance and repair easier.

dp
08-11-2007, 12:36 AM
Better start weaving chains for those drive wheels, Evan :)

Evan
08-11-2007, 12:45 AM
No problem. I already have a set of V-block chains for it and the wheel weights are almost ready to install.

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/trac5.jpg

dp
08-11-2007, 12:54 AM
There was never a moment of doubt :) The ribs appear to be "barrel hoops" from modern steel drums, or the tops from drums.

Evan
08-11-2007, 01:02 AM
Braaapp. Try again please. :)

dp
08-11-2007, 01:12 AM
Second guess was rims from a car or truck. On closer exam I do see a hard lip a wheel weight could be attached to.

bob_s
08-11-2007, 01:17 AM
Are you going to put a snow-blower fan on the mower deck? It doesn't look like it has a whole lot of ground/snow clearance ...

kendall
08-11-2007, 01:33 AM
Can't say what the ribs are from, but it's a nice looking plow, what kind of leverage does it take on the lifting arm?


I had been looking for a useable plow or snowblower for the drive a couple years ago, and found one of these with a plow on it at a jobsite:

http://www.steelsoldiers.com/images/paulbomb2.jpg

Asked about it, and the people who owned the property that it's status was 'unknown' kept asking about it, and they told me that one of the units had been rented out and the bombi belonged to him. But he hadn't paid in a full YEAR so they were dealing with the courts to dispose of the items he had in there. gave them my number and told them if they got it sorted out to give me a call and hopefully I could meet the cost. A couple weeks later I got a call and they said the court stuff was clear and I could come pick it up, when I asked about price they said they just wanted it out of there and they had all the paperwork so I got it. realy great thing was they loaned me a truck and trailer to haul it with.

It's so much fun that I don't worry about whether there's snow out to play with it.

Mine is either an older version of the one shown or a higher optioned one as it came with a 6 cylender in it, the thing has some serious grunt, and will lift the entire front end if you get to crazy with the throttle.
Only real problem I have is that the drivetrain is reversed, so the transmission shifts backwards.

Ken.

Evan
08-11-2007, 01:34 AM
Pull six pins and the deck drops off for the winter. I am thinking of bulding a rotary plow for it but we hardly ever get enough snow to make it worthwhile. This isn't just a backup for my Rover. The Rover has a huge turning circle because it uses ordinary universal joints in the front half shafts. That makes it difficult to work in the trees. There are also places where the Rover can't go but the garden tractor can. It will be handy for moving dirt, gravel and if we board horses again for breaking up and scattering horse crap, among other things.

Evan
08-11-2007, 04:35 AM
I forgot to say that yes, the ribs are taken from a 14" wheel rim. They were a perfect fit. I used a 1/32" ceramic zip cut wheel to cut off the bead seat all the way around. Funny thing is that I had just picked up that rim at the dump a week before because I thought it might come in handy.

It takes about a 40 lb pull to lift the blade but that will be reduced by 1/2 by the advantage of the hand lever.

DICKEYBIRD
08-11-2007, 07:11 AM
I dunno a thing about snowplows , living down here in the sunny south, but that's a nice piece of work! Looks to be very well designed and built.

Was all of that conjured up in your noggin or did you have an example to look at and modify for your own use? Come to think of it, I guess driving around for hours plowing white stuff in the Landie gives a feller lots of time to develop the next iteration.

What are the 2 horizontal pieces of thinwall tubing for? Used as a bumper for shoving things around when the plows off of it?

Evan
08-11-2007, 08:01 AM
Was all of that conjured up in your noggin or did you have an example to look at and modify for your own use?

It is loosely based on this design, mostly. I made some changes to save weight.

http://vts.bc.ca/pics/rblade1.jpg

That is the blade on my Rover which is my own design. I built that 17 years ago. The failsafe principles of the shear bolt mounting frame in particular is my idea and has been tested several times since I built it. It works very well. New bolts are cheap.

I needed something to maintain the spacing on the upper part of the frame when it isn't mounted. The tubing serves that purpose and is also a mostly decorative bumper. It's exhaust pipe tube.

Evan
08-11-2007, 08:16 AM
Here is a better pic of the mounting frame without the blade.

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/trac6.jpg

IOWOLF
08-11-2007, 07:06 PM
I see you got some tips from Adrian. LOL :)

japcas
08-11-2007, 08:15 PM
I see you got some tips from Adrian. LOL :)

I knew it was just a matter of time before someone said that. Looks good as usual Evan. Thanks for sharing.

Evan
08-11-2007, 09:07 PM
I made the blade lift handle this morning. Works well and uses over center action to hold the blade up. It is easier to operate the blade than I expected. I can lift it using only my little finger on the handle. I drove around this afternoon and seriously pissed off a lot of ants by plowing up their anthills. :D

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/tracbladeanim.gif

George Hodge
08-11-2007, 09:42 PM
I have an old 7hp.Wheelhorse that I mounted a snow blade on the front.It's connected to the rear axle,with the blade lifted by the mower lift lever.First thing I found was I needed chains,then weight.Added 100# of weight to the rear,then wheel weights to the back tires.On snow or ice I needed weights on the front wheels.We've had several good snow storms and a whopper Ice storm.It works great and is very manouverable.
If you use aluminum shear pins,will they bend to where you can't remove them? Your plow looks great!

Evan
08-11-2007, 09:49 PM
If you use aluminum shear pins,will they bend to where you can't remove them?

Easier to remove than bent steel ones. That what drills are for. I've never had that problem on the Land Rover blade. They always shear.

Ken_Shea
08-11-2007, 10:02 PM
Evan,
You are definitely a get it done guy!
You have made and shown some really nice projects.

Although it makes me think about the approaching winter :(

Mike Burdick
08-11-2007, 10:08 PM
How about a couple of pictures of the blade while you were welding it? I'd like to see how you got the metal formed unless it is very thin.

Evan
08-11-2007, 10:19 PM
It was already formed. I used the old air receiver from my compressor that I rebuilt a couple of months ago. The radius also happens to be exactly the same as a 14 inch rim so I used a cut up rim for the ribs. I don't have any pics during the fit up.

wmgeorge
08-12-2007, 07:28 PM
Looks nice, how much HP? I made a lifting, plowing blade and also a bucket for my 18 HP John Deere 318. It comes with two hyd. circuits from the factory. I've got 200 Lbs of weights and tire chains for the winter... needed them both. We do get snow in Iowa, in spite of the global warming.






It was already formed. I used the old air receiver from my compressor that I rebuilt a couple of months ago. The radius also happens to be exactly the same as a 14 inch rim so I used a cut up rim for the ribs. I don't have any pics during the fit up.

Evan
08-12-2007, 10:03 PM
It's a 15.5 hp overhead valve Briggs. I won't buy any other make of engine, too many problems with others.

Yankee1
08-12-2007, 10:37 PM
Hi Evan,
That looks very good. Nice work. I have a mower that looks like yours only older. Its only 12 HP. I use it to level the crushed stone in the drive way.
I drag a small length of I beam with a chain bridle. It works well if I don't turn around too sharply. If I turn too sharp it hits the rear wheel.
Chuck

Weston Bye
08-14-2007, 09:29 AM
I made the blade lift handle this morning. Works well and uses over center action to hold the blade up. It is easier to operate the blade than I expected. I can lift it using only my little finger on the handle. I drove around this afternoon and seriously pissed off a lot of ants by plowing up their anthills. :D

http://vts.bc.ca/pics2/tracbladeanim.gif

Looks like something out of the movie Road Warrior. :)

aostling
08-14-2007, 09:49 AM
I made the blade lift handle this morning. Works well and uses over center action to hold the blade up. It is easier to operate the blade than I expected. I can lift it using only my little finger on the handle. I drove around this afternoon and seriously pissed off a lot of ants by plowing up their anthills. :D



Evan, this is the first time I have seen a .gif file posted here, which moves without benefit of a mouse click. Can you describe the camera you used to take it? I don't think my little pocket digital camera (which can do video clips) can output in this format.

Is this image now in perpetual motion, or does it only move when somebody is logged onto the forum? It recalls the old question: if a tree falls in a forest and there is nobody there, does it make a noise?

Evan
08-14-2007, 10:00 AM
It's an animated gif which your browser automatically displays. I had my wife take a sequence of shots as I posed with the blade in the various intermediate positions. I then assemble the individual images in JASC Animation Shop to make the animated gif. I have set the image to loop continuously.