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Vintner

Do I need wheel weights?

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Oh Man! I'm lovin' my Wheel Horse! I bought it last summer, but didn't really get much chance to use it the rest of 2017 except to mow the grass a few times & haul some firewood. I'm not sure of the year because I can not find a model number on it anywhere. I know the engine is from 1984 or maybe it was 86. Anyway, it came with a plow blade that I was told wasn't "exactly" the one designed for this model. The blade & it's components were in poor condition, & it took some minor fabricating & finagling to attach it to the tractor & get it working (semi) properly. Still needs some tweaking. The blade has 3 settings, angled left, angled right, & strait. If it's important, there are no hydraulics involved. 
My problem is this: When I'm plowing snow with the blade @ an angle, the front tires (steering) are useless. The tractor only pushes up against the pile of snow that I want to move further over left or right. I'm not talking a lot of snow either. Maybe 7-8" of powdery, fluffy snow. No matter that the tires are steering to the left, the tractor just goes strait, pushing up against the pile of snow & moving it over mere inches @ best. I'm wondering if I need to put some weight on the front of the tractor, or bigger tires or better traction??? The front tires look like they have little wear on them. I have chains on the back tires, &that isn't sliding around any.

Sorry if this isn't enough information. I'm new here & to lawn tractors as well. So I'm not real familiar with what info to gather when making an inquiry like this.

Edited by Vintner
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A picture of your set up would be worth a 1000 words.  Assuming that the blade (when it is angled) is not interfering with the steering, and this is just a traction issue...you are right that some weight in the front would help.  Perhaps don't bite off so much snow at once.  Maybe the scrapper on your blade needs to be adjusted to clean the surface more, or a new scrapper edge.  Mine likes to go straight also, if I have some snow still on the drive way.  How ever, having some concrete showing makes a big difference.  If you do a search in this section, the members have come up with many ideas for traction on the front wheels.  :occasion-xmas:

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Front wheel will slip sideways when plowing heavier snow.  Wheel weights on the front and #40 roller chain around the front tires will help.  You say the plow is not original.  Is it mounted to the rear axle or only up forward.  Some blades from other makes may mount near the front. A picture would be helpful.  Blades that push from near the front of the tractor are more prone to side sliding.  I had a blade on my Lawn ranger that mounts on the mid tachmatic and it was much more prone to side sliding than the bigger models with the blade mounted all the way back on the rear axle.

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A few pictures of your tractor and we would know what you are working with.

Probably we can tell you which year and model you have. 

There are many ways to help your sliding. If your front tires are bald not much you can do except putting chains on front tires . Either a bike chain on the  center or chain's like the rear chains. If you add weight to the front then your steering will be harder.

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For snow plowing, weight is everything.

Weight at the front or at the back keeps the wheels down, and chain, chains or tires (lugs, ribs or ATV style) gives you ‘bit’ to keep the tractor going, (front: from sliding sideways) (back: for traction, forward motion).

Keep the weight low and at the axle: 20# + on each front tire, 50-100# on each rear,  also firmer tires at 20 psi.

Snow plowing is one of the most fun things to do on our Wheel Horses.

 

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18 minutes ago, GlenPettit said:

Snow plowing is one of the most fun things to do on our Wheel Horses.

 

:text-yeahthat:

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Noma makes a universal pair of wheel weights that will fit most 8" wheel horse front wheels - if that is what you have, check the tires' sidewall size . Wheel Horse did have a set of cast iron front weights , but they are quite expensive if you come across a set . Another thing that can be done is to use a liquid tire filling kit from one of the farm stores and pump them full of RV antifreeze - it helps a lot . Be aware , if you have a seal coated driveway those chains and using front chains in particular will mark up that coating easily - it will show up in the spring like a sore thumb. I run ag tires on both axles, fluid fill them and run the cast iron weights as well - no slip but all of mine are very heavy and you do have to keep that in mind - easier to tear up parts and some models are known to crack the rear transmission frame mounting plate, badly. Just don't abuse it - these things will easily run 50+yrs. Rebuild it , run it another 50yrs..lol - no kidding.

 

Sarge

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Thanks for all the responses! Sorry, no digi cam @ the moment. I will do a better search here for ideas on adding weight to the front tires as well as look for some Nama wheel weights. My blade mounts @ the back of the tractor, & my front tires look pretty new. Here is a link another thread I did here w/pix of my tractor back when I had a working camera.  

 

Edited by Vintner

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Not sure if there are any weights that would fit that model - some of the 300 series and such used 6" rims up front - again, check the tire's size and go from there. Lots of ways on here to add weight and the steering issue on ice/snow is commonly addressed with many solutions. Many of our members can really think outside the box if you haven't noticed.


Sarge

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Just a thought as well, does the blade float or are you applying down pressure ?

 

I run my blade on float and as long as I am not on a steep sideways angle or on glare ice then my machine steers fine.

 

I use a 520HC but yours is likely around the same weight up front.

 

Cleat

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For a front weight I use one off one of those gym equipment things, fitted to a modified front mule. 391. The Black Horse in the centre of the photo.

 

DSCF0072.JPG.3852549b8735100757f9f63bf4e59cd4.JPG 

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Other than wheel weights up front, filled tires, chains, wouldn't Stormin's front weight interfere with snow plowing? Thinkin' narrower weight might work. :huh:

 

I've used front suitcase weights when turning (plowing) earth. My first plowing a garden was fun although the front wheels were a foot above the ground.

Ride 'em cowboy! 

ride-a-horse.gif.81c456f36a09bffd6b2029ea4898aa92.gif

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