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Nothing says "I Love You, Dear" like screaming lower back pain!

Sometimes Wrong but rarely in doubt!

14 December 2010

Snow Blower

I've been nudging at Mrs. Bugbear for 5 years to get a snow-blower.  My efforts were really only half-hearted since up until we moved I really didn't need a snow-blower.  When your driveway is just over five hundred square feet it is difficult to make cogent and convincing arguments for purchasing a snow blower, you lack the moral high ground so to speak.  I didn't have myself convinced so convincing my wife was impossible.  The new driveway is closer to fifteen thousand square feet; my arguments gained much greater ground with the move.   Not long after we moved Mrs. Bugbear finally caved in and we bought a 30" Cub Cadet Snow Blower. (Actually, she caved in before we moved but I didn't want to spend the money to buy it.)

In my naivete I thought that a snow blower would be a labour saving device.  I'd walk behind the blower which drives itself and finish clearing the driveway without breaking a sweat.

I mentioned naivete didn't I?

The freaking snow blower weighs THREE HUNDRED FREAKING POUNDS!  Turning the the frickin' thing is no small feat.  The blower has independent clutches for each drive wheel  to facilitate steering the behemoth.  At three hundred pounds this feature is necessary but it is still a wrestling match to get the beast turned. 

I mentioned THREE HUNDRED FREAKING POUNDS didn't I?  This is what I get for getting the thirty inch snowblower instead of the twenty-four inch snow blower which is forty pounds lighter.

I did for the sake of thoroughness shovel my driveway a couple of times when we had very light snowfalls.  In light snow it takes about as long  to shovel the driveway as it does to employ the snow-blower.  However, in heavier snow shoveling would be an all-day affair whereas the snow-blower will get the driveway cleared in about the same amount of time as for light snow.


Don't tell Mrs. Bugbear, but I really don't mind shoveling the driveway all that much, the exercise is good for me and it gets me out of the house for 45 minutes or so and despite the THREE HUNDRED FREAKING POUNDS OF SNOW BLOWER, using the heavy SOB is kind of fun, in a cold and heavy lug your guts out kinda way.


  1. That reminds me of "I have had fun, and this is not it."

  2. We have a 29 or 30" snow blower and I have not tried to pick it up, but I find operating it (with a single clutch) to be easy. The only time it ever seems like labour is in the rare event that I am impatient enough not to use the reverse gear and drag the snowblower back in neutral faster than the drive in reverse would run it.

    Perhaps you did not buy the optimal model. Or perhaps you have an odd technique.

    I tend to do an entire driveway length, turn about, do another length, repeat. I do start at the outside of both sides of the driveway and work in. Once the slice becomes thin enough (2 or 3 runs left), I may elect not to hang a 180 but instead reverse, take another slice, reverse, take another slice.

    If you find the snowblower a lot of work, either there is something wrong with you or the blower. :)

    Also, what HP? There is a key ratio of Horsepower to Blade Width that you need in order to reliably throw deep, wet snow. Many blowers fall short on this, in which case you would be better sacrificing a few inches of width for a better ratio.


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