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joelk

Snowblower with Hydrolift?

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joelk
This will be the first winter on my FDT (3112h) with a Hydrolift. It seems like it would be a pain to put it into "float" and back out everytime I want to raise it. How do others use this? I saw someone recently who used a chain to raise and lower the blower, and thought that might make sense with the Hydrolift (mine has a straight rod now). I'd appreciate your thoughts and experiences.

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ReedS
quote:
It seems like it would be a pain to put it into "float" and back out everytime I want to raise it.
OK you've lost me on this not sure what you mean by the above quote. Are you refering to the hydro-lift? I've always had my blower on a hydro-lift tractor with a straight lift rod and it's always been great, just have to make sure lift is in the float position unless you're trying to scrape the packed snow down.

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Brettw
The newer hydro lifts don't "float". They stay held in position, so I believe that is what Joel is referring to. I am not sure how you would hook up a chain assembly so it could free float like the mower deck with the cable lift for instance, but I am quite sure that if it can be done, someone on here has probably done it and there is a blog somewhere.

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PhanDad
If there isn't a float position, then convert the solid rod to the spring loaded type lift rod found on the newer RBT snowblowers. The spring provides down pressure and float. Only issue is, if the contour changes drastically, you have to manually raise/lower the blower, the spring doesn't supply much "float". And if you don't raise the blower soon enough when encountering an "up", you wind up with a "bowed" lift rod. Let your imagination figure out how I know this.

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rokon2813
I think what he is saying is he thinks it would be a pain to squeeze the lift handle to go past the latch to lock into float every time. Joel, you can adjust the stops a little, it will still float, but be easier to lock in. After the first couple uses you will get used to it, or you can use a chain instead of the rod.

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MikeES
When you get use to it, the FDT hydraulics are great and faster than anything else. I lock mine in the float down position and just have to unlatch and move it slightly to lift the blade or blower. And you can put in lots of down pressure when you need it.

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joelk
Yes, that is exactly what I was referring to. My setup now is hard to squeeze in the summer (to get to float), so it would presumable be worse in winter. Anyway, adjusting the stops makes sense, I'll give that a try before it gets too cold. Thanks for the tip.

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HubbardRA
For those of you with RBT hydrolifts, you can add float to your tractors by replacing the control valve with one from a PowerMax that has float. The valves are identical on the outside. I did that on mine, and now I can use a solid rod and have downpressure when I want it. Works great when I use the snowplow.

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mendon-chalmers
I use the float past the raise point, so I squeeze the handle & move it about a inch to get past the stop & then to raise I squeeze move an inch past the stop to raise. I hardly ever go to float at the lower stop.

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John_RI
I use which ever 'float' position is closest to where the lever is when it's time to drop the blower down. I wouldn't want the chain because it would remove my ability to apply down pressure when I want it.

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