August isn’t the month that I usually start thinking about winter, but with the lows in the high 50s last night, it definitely felt a bit like fall. And fall does get me thinking about winter preparations – and wondering how much snow we’ll get this year. Snow makes me think of snow handling tools and there’s nothing quite as satisfying as blasting the stuff out of your lane with a tractor-mounted snow blower.
To help with this year’s snow wrangling, Deere and Company’s Frontier Equipment group has released a new front-end loader-mounted and a pair of SB12 Series 3-point-hitch-mounted snow blowers.
The 76-inch wide SB2176 Snow Blower mounts on any current John Deere 400 Series Loader and gets its power from a PTO-driven, 3-point hitch mounted, hydraulic power pack that’s fully independent of the tractor’s hydraulic system. And if you need a bit more traction with the blower mounted, the power pack can be fitted with suitcase weights for added rear ballast. Operators use the tractor’s loader hydraulic controls to adjust the snow blower’s cut height and pitch while moving snow.
“The SB2176 has an industry-exclusive system that automatically monitors the torque applied to the impeller. The auger automatically slows when maximum torque is sensed and this allows the impeller to move away excess snow and helps to reduce plugging during operation,” says Michael Horrell, Frontier Equipment marketing manager.
For farmers and acreage owners who own utility tractors, Frontier also announced 74- and 80-inch, 3-point-hitch-mounted, . These machines are more traditional PTO-powered tools, but they are built to move a lot of snow very quickly.
“This is a commercial-duty snow blower for customers with compact-utility or utility tractors between 30 and 80 horsepower. It’s a great fit for large property owners or contractors who desire to own a commercial-grade snow blower at an economical price,” says Horrell.
I have yet to need a snow blower here in Kansas, but when I farmed in South Dakota, there were plenty of days when I could have made good use of any of these new Frontier machines. Pushing out 10-foot tall drifts isn’t that much fun with a loader – especially when the wind rebuilds them faster than you can remove them.
If you live in the snow-belt or are considering a snow-removal side business, you just might want to head down to your nearest John Deere dealer and have a look at these new snow blowers from Frontier.
Hank Will raises hair sheep, heritage cattle and many varieties of open-pollinated corn with his wife, Karen, on their rural Osage County, Kansas farm. His home life is a perfect complement to his professional life as editor in chief at GRIT and Capper's Farmer magazines. Connect with him on Google+.