Last Saturday into Sunday it snowed about 5". I got to try my new snow blower out. Actually, I guess I should go back to the Thursday prior. The weather guessers started making noise about a Nor'Easter that should dump about 7" of snow. Not impressive as far as Nor'Easters go, but impressive for a first measurable snowfall. Well, now that the bike was out of the garage, it was time to get the snowblower out of the basement. And, oh, by the way, finish putting it together :)
So Friday night when I got to work, I backed the car into the driveway, took snowblower out to the garage and spent a while puzzling over the pictographs on how to put the chute on. Okay, actually putting the chute on was easy, it was figureing out how to hook up the cabling so that I could control the top guide angle (nice feature that I don't have to do that manually like my old snowblower). Finally, I figured that out and started the beast up and putted it up and down the driveway a couple of times to get used to the controls. Oh, auger and drive controls are on the opposite sides from my old snowblower. Add onto that that the left hand is the clutch hand (on the bike) and I was all kinds of confused.
Saturday afternoon it started snowing, but by evening there was only a couple of inches so I elected to shovel the driveway. Sunday morning I woke up to a nice blanket of snow. Picture taken early morning, so barely any light.
After waiting until a respectable 8 AM, I started up the snow blower and started clearing the driveway, then onto the truck path to the tent garage, then the paths thru the pen and out to the mulch pile (and where I dump ashes from the pellet stoves). I was cussing myself because when I assembled it, the directions suggested putting it in 1WD and saving 2WD for heavy snow. Uggh, bad decision to listen to them. On smooth driveway 1WD was okay, but the yard was not fun. But, since the wheels were packed with snow, I didn't want to try to do the change over, so kept at it as it was.
Monday night I got home and changed the lock pin over so that the snow blower was in 2WD - getting ready for the next storm barreling toward us.
Tuesday it started snowing shortly before I left for work. It snowed all day and by the time I got home there was another 5.5" for me to move. This time, with 2WD, the job went much more smoothly. The blower has plenty of power and blows snow quite far. Since I wasn't fighting the wheels to keep it going straight, I was able to concentrate on getting used to the controls and an interlock system between the drive and auger levers that had completely discombobulated me the first try.
If the start of the winter is any indication, it will be a harder and snowier winter than the last two. It seems like this snowblower will be up to the challenge.