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Old Combines Make Great Snow Blowers
Old combines make great snowblowers if you cut off most of the old tin, build a new frame, add a 3-pt. and equip them with a second engine. Two Iowa farmers who did it say their snow-handling problems are over.
Art Vanderpol and Walt Sievert, neighbors who farm near Ashton, got together last winter and turned an old Case 900 combine from the late 1960's into a snowblower most any city would be proud to own.
"We practically stripped the entire machine," says Vanderpol. "The only components used from the original machine were the drive train, tires, cab, operator's platform and the engine."
The two men built an 8-in. channel iron frame around the chassis of the combine. Then, they mounted the cab between the front wheels of the machine and installed two engines on the rear. The combine's original slant-6 Chrysler engine sits in back and drives the V-belt, variable speed drive. A GMC 350 cu. in. V-8 powers the pto shaft in front which runs the snowblower.
"The 3-speed transmission with variable speed drive lets you maneuver easily into corners or over tough ground while the second engine, which powers the blower, runs at full power for maximum blowing capacity. Power feeding out the back of the front engine runs V-belts which convert to roller chain which, in turn, powers the pto shaft at 1,000 rpm's. We mounted a standard Cat. II 3-pt. hitch on front that'll carry any snowblower, or other 3-pt. mounted equipment," says Vanderpol.
All controls were fed into the original cab so the original control panel can be used. There are dual sets of gauges for the two engines. The blower on front is an 8-ft. Lundell blower, a brand which Vanderpol sells on his farm.
"The advantage of this design is that it puts most of the weight over the drive wheels, which gives it great traction and maneuverability," points out Vanderpol.
He says the combine snowblower took six weeks to build and cost about $1,000, not counting the blower itself. He and his partner say they would be willing to build similar machines for other farmers or local communities using almost all used parts for $4,000 to $5,000.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Art Vanderpol, Ashton, Iowa 51232 (ph 712 724-6126).

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1983 - Volume #7, Issue #6