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Started shoveling snow. The plow had gone through and there was two-and-a-half feet of packed heavy chunks at the end of the driveway. After an hour, I had gotten rid of enough snow to get the 'Sploder out, and I hadn't even touched the sidewalk.

So I broke down. I hopped in the 'Sploder, fishtailed my way out of the alley and went to Menards.

Every year there is a big winter storm, and every year I wonder why I don't have a snowblower. I know that while I was with Barb it was because she hated powered devices, but the past couple of years I've always been pissed every storm at having to shovel. Well, I was always pissed at shoveling.

This was the year that I was gonna change that.

Foreknowledge of the storm meant that it was unlikely that they would have any snowblowers in stock. The smart folks would have already bought theirs, and they would likely be sold out, or just have expensive models left. I kind of had the "let's leave it up to fate" idea that if they had any left and they were within my budget, I'd get one; if not, I'd be back to shoveling and cursing.

What I hadn't counted on was that foreknowledge of the storm would also cause whoever was ordering the snowblowers at Menards to think "hey, we'd better get a bunch of these in because they're going on sale".

That's right, I found a nice snowblower that because it was on sale was just in my budget. And they were moving fast-- two others went ritht behind me, like walking out the door while I was loading it in the 'sploder.

Got home after a slight detour to get gas, unpacked the beast and did the assembly (which was really quick). Added the gas, and discovered something interesting: this thing has electric start-- like plug in an extension card, push a button, and voila. It also has the standard pull-start, but this was pretty cool.

It's also a two-stage machine, which is awesome. That means it has one set of chomping blades, and a second "slinger" blade that throws the snow. It makes a considerable difference when the snow is deep or wet and heavy.

So yeah, started it up, and it was niiiiice. It was still pretty slow because of the depth of the snow drifts, but so much better on my back and knees than shoveling.

Finished the back, got around front and did everything that I could, including spending some time helping the neighbor folks unbury their cars from the plowdrifts that were locking them in. Probably three hours outside making the snow go away.

It's not something I'm gonna use every day, but it's certainly saved my ass today and I suspect that it will come in handy in the future.



( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 25th, 2007 09:16 pm (UTC)
Hooray for the snowblower!
I'm really glad you got a snowblower, because frankly I was worried about how shoveling so much snow could impact your health.

Now, can you bring it over to my house?
Feb. 25th, 2007 09:37 pm (UTC)
Re: Hooray for the snowblower!
Heh. It doesn't really fit in the back of the 'Sploder when it's assembled.
Feb. 25th, 2007 09:41 pm (UTC)
Re: Hooray for the snowblower!
NICE out!

You couldn't have planned that better, if you tried! ;)
Feb. 25th, 2007 09:51 pm (UTC)
Re: Hooray for the snowblower!
I was actually wondering who would ask first.
Feb. 25th, 2007 11:07 pm (UTC)
Re: Hooray for the snowblower!
But I bet you can push it down the alley :D

Eh, I dug out my car this morning. I shall pay for it later. Ah well.
(Deleted comment)
Feb. 25th, 2007 09:45 pm (UTC)
It's a canuck-- Yard Machine, 5.5HP two stage. Six forward speeds, two reverse.


Sale price was significantly less.
Feb. 25th, 2007 10:42 pm (UTC)
I picked one up a couple of years ago for the same reason. My friends were out of town and I had to take care of their driveway and walk and my own. So tired, so abused after that day, I bought one on sale that weekend. Just a single stage, but it has the same electric starter you described.

Glad I had it today. The snow on the driveway was over the top of the snow-thrower, so it became a many-pass operation to clear the driveway.
Feb. 25th, 2007 10:46 pm (UTC)
including spending some time helping the neighbor folks unbury their cars from the plowdrifts that were locking them in.

You have now become the extra-super-cool neighbor that everyone wants. The guy who is so proud of owning a cool snowblower that he not only does his own walkway, he wants to show off by doing the neighbor's walkway too.

Use your power wisely.
Feb. 26th, 2007 12:42 am (UTC)
I think it's snowblower karma.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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