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Ariens® partners with U.S. Biathlon team

1/28/2019 6:00:00 AM


By: Aaron Abler, Email Marketing & Content Specialist,

An American brand lends support to an American team on a growing American stage

A logical partner

For the 2018—2019 season, the Ariens brand will follow the U.S. Olympic Biathlon team along the International Biathlon Union (IBU) World Cup tour in the Alps, Scandinavia, the U.S. and Canada. As the A​riens name travels throughout the competition circuit, it will provide increased brand exposure to some of the snowiest regions of the world and offer a solution for those who experience apocalyptic snowfalls year over year.

 

"The Ariens brand is proud to partner with the U.S. Biathlon, a longstanding successful team,"" said AriensCo Chairman and CEO Dan Ariens. "This partnership offers us the opportunity to get the Ariens name in front of consumers in key winter markets, both in the U.S. and especially in Europe."

The Ariens brand, which was born during the heat of the Great Depression, has been an American symbol of endurance and strength for over 85 years, making it the ideal partner for a team of strong athletes with the endurance to not only be competitive, but to grow the popularity of biathlon in the United States.

 

 

"The partnership with Ariens provides our athletes with an opportunity to build our brands together through the global World Cup tour," said U.S. Biathlon President and CEO Max Cobb.

Much like the characteristics of our landmark product, the Ariens Sno-Thro®, our partnership is designed to clear a path for the team's journey to the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. The support from Ariens this season will help the team stay competitive and build up to a strong showing in Beijing.

What is biathlon?

If you're unfamiliar with biathlon, you’ll know it better as the sport where competitors race through a trail on Nordic, cross-country-style skis with a bolt-action .22 rifle strapped to their back. Competition is composed of a demanding cross-country ski race incorporated with either two or four stops to shoot at five 115-millimeter targets placed 50 meters down range from competitors' shooting positions. Once the targets are cleared, the skier races to the next stop and eventually, the finish line.

 

 

 

Endurance required

Participation in this sport doesn't come easy. The display of extreme physical exertion displayed by these athletes during competition does no justice to the actual amount of effort required to be competitive in the IBU. According to the website of the U.S. Olympic Biathlon team, the physically demanding sport of cross-country skiing combined with the need to keep steady hand and controlled breathing in the shooting lane is among the most disciplined in the world. Even with hearts beating up to three times per second, these athletes are expected to hold steady enough to be precise in their marksmanship.

 

Follow the U.S. Biathlon team

The U.S. Biathlon Team has been posting strong athletic results in recent years and has been helping grow the nationwide interest in the sport so much that this year marks its strongest domestic broadcast and streaming schedule. Additionally, the IBU World Cup will return to Utah's Soldier Hollow Olympic venue for the first time since 2001, making it even more special for involvement with the strong, American Ariens brand.

 

The U.S. Biathlon team, which trains competitors for five different competition classes, is running the full competition circuit throughout the globe. Competitions are ongoing through late March and are broadcast through various NBC Sports channels on television and online.

​​

What Snow Blower Should I Buy?

1/16/2019 6:00:00 AM


By: Aaron Abler, Email Marketing & Content Specialist,

How do you choose which snow blower is right for you? Maybe you only need something for a small clearing with lighter snowfalls, or maybe you need a snow blower to clear large areas in a region that receives apocalyptic snowfalls. Whatever your case, you can find small snow blowers for clearing decks, roofs and narrow spaces, or bigger snow blowers for clearing large spaces or multiple driveways at Ariens retailers and dealerships nationwide.

Small snow blower for compact areas

Not all snow blowers are large, heavy machines. Single stage type snow blowers are compact and lighter, making them ideal for clearing decks, narrow areas and even flat rooftops. But don’t think that means they’re limited. Single-stage snow blowers clear large areas with lighter snowfall amounts up to six inches very effectively.

In the Ariens® single stage lineup, there's a choice of the Path-Pro® for homeowners, or the Professional 21, a single stage for contractors.

Ariens Path-Pro

  • 136cc or 208 cc engine options
  • Spring-loaded scraper blade for more effective clearing
  • Large, semi-pneumatic wheels
  • Folding handlebars for storage
  •  

    Ariens Professional 21

    • High-wear paddles
    • Remote chute option
    • All-steel construction
    • Easily accessible engine
    • Smart lift handlebars for easy, single-person loading onto a truck bed
    •  

      To learn more about single stage snow blowers, click here.

      Popular snow blowers of 2019

      Need a snow blower for moderate snowfalls? If you live anywhere within North America’s snow belt, a medium sized snow blower may be your answer. As Mother Nature has taught us, heavy snowfalls of greater than six inches or more can fall as far south as Kentucky, Oklahoma, Virginia and New Mexico and push into the nether regions of Canada. Just last week, 12 inches fell on St. Louis, so don’t think that you’re protected because of your location – it can happen in more places than you think.

      Though there is no definition for a midsize snow blower, industry standard would classify these common, popular snow blowers as a two stage snow blower with a clearing width from 20 to 30 inches. With housing heights up to 23 inches, these machines are built to confront winter’s hardest punches.

      To learn more about two-stage snow blowers, click here.

      Like single-stage snow blowers, two-stage snow blowers are designed for varying needs. Whether you’re clearing an alleyway in Chicago, a long driveway in suburban New Haven, Connecticut, or a steep path in Banff, Alberta, Canada, the Ariens Sno-Thro® lineup has a machine that’s sized right and spec’d with features that fit your driveway.

      Let's use the Chicago scenario. I lived in the Windy City once and I can say from experience that there's nothing more frustrating than trying to dig your car out of its parking spot after the snowplow passes. All the snow that was spread across the street has not barricaded your transportation. Swell. And don’t forget, you'll need to move your car within about 24 hours before the city fines you at least $75.00. Super. Oh, and don't forget the sidewalk, too.

      In densely populated areas like Chicago, there's hardly any space left for snow, which is why Ariens Compact series snow blower is best for that situation. With housing widths as narrow as 20 inches, but the height and power to redirect snow across the street, the Ariens Compact is the right choice for maneuvering in the big city. Standard with a top-filled, cast-iron gearcase, remote chute controls and a halogen headlamp, it's dependability gives you confidence long after the sun sets.

      Ariens Compact Series

      • All-steel construction
      • Limited 3-year warranty
      • Top-filled, cast-iron gearcase
      • In-dash chute controls
      • Halogen headlamp
      • 15-inch directional tires

       

      To learn more about the Ariens Compact series Sno-Thro, click here.

      For those living in more rural or suburban areas, with larger driveways or sidewalks to maneuver through, you might want to consider a step up into a unit that has at least 24 inches of clearing width. The name of the game here is time, and if you don’t have the engine power or clearing width to tackle big snowfalls in short order, you’re spending your weekends away from things you’d rather do.

      The Deluxe series of units come with the same features as the Compact, but with enhancements like Auto-Turn™ for easier turning, a larger auger and impeller diameter for faster snow processing ability, larger engines and an EFI option for easier starting, storage and better fuel efficiency.

      Ariens Deluxe Series

      • 254cc and 306cc engine options
      • 24, 28 and 30-inch clearing width options
      • 16-inch directional tires
      • Auto-Turn steering
      • EFI engine option
      • 14-inch auger and impeller diameter

       

      To learn more about the Ariens Deluxe series Sno-Thro, click here.

      Let's say you have a clearing area similar to the last example, but you need something with more power to throw the juicy stuff. Though "packing" snow is great for building a snowman, it's bothersome to clear from your driveway and potentially dangerous to move with a shovel. For those wet and heavy snowfalls, you'll want a powerful snow blower that can toss it as effectively as the lighter variety.

      All models in the Ariens Platinum lineup come standard with an SHO engine, meaning super high output. There's no replacement for displacement, and with 369 or 414 cubic centimeters, you can be certain the throwing distance will clear some of the widest driveways.

      Besides bigger engines, Platinum series models include Quick-Turn™ chute control for easy redirection of snow discharge, and heated hand grips to work in comfort. And for those clearing steep or sloped surfaces that demand superior traction, the Platinum lineup includes a patented RapidTrak track-drive option.

      Ariens Platinum Series

      • 369cc and 414cc engine options
      • 24, 28 and 30-inch clearing width options
      • Heated hand grips
      • Quick-Turn chute rotation
      • RapidTrak option

       

      To learn more about the Ariens Platinum series Sno-Thro, click here.

      Biggest snow blowers of 2019

      A few years ago, an old college friend of mine asked which snow blower would work best for him to clear his driveway, a wide path to his shed and an area around the shed. The answer was a snow blower with a clearing width of at least 28 inches, a large engine and drift cutters that could clear open areas prone to blowing and drifting snow. Same goes for professionals clearing multiple properties.

      When you're talking very large clearing areas, a slightly larger housing and engine combination can make a big difference. Consider this. If a larger snow blower can process snow just 10 minutes faster per job than another snow blower and you have 12 jobs to complete, you banked two hours. That’s either more time for yourself, or more capacity to do more jobs.

      In the Ariens lineup, our largest is aptly named the Professional series. Models in this family are available with 28, 32 or 36 inches of width, come standard with drift cutters to tear down snow piles higher than the housing and chew them up with an auger and impeller combination powered by a 420cc engine. This is also the snow blower with the most options. Among its bells and whistles include a RapidTrak option, an EFI engine option, and a hydrostatic drive option. Hydrostatic drive is an infinitely variable transmission, meaning it allows operators to change ground speeds without stopping to shift like with traditional friction-drive models.

      Ariens Professional Series

      • 420cc engine
      • Drift cutters
      • 28, 32, and 36-inch clearing width options
      • RapidTrak options
      • EFI engine options
      • Hydrostatic drive options

       

      To learn more about the Ariens Professional series Sno-Thro, click here.

      The snow blower lineup this winter is extensive, and it might seem tough or intimidating to figure out what's best for your driveway. There's no specific science or calculation that can determine exactly what you need, especially with weather as volatile as it is, but we got close with our snow blower selector tool.

      Crunch the numbers to see which snow blower is best for you this winter:

      Snow Blower Selector

How to Improve Snow Blower Performance

1/10/2019 6:00:00 AM


By: Aaron Abler, Email Marketing & Content Specialist,

Are you getting everything you want from your snow blower, or is something lacking? Maybe your snow blower isn’t throwing well or maybe your snow blower isn't scraping the driveway properly. But before you become frustrated and rush to the snow blower repair shop, we suggest making some quick, easy adjustments. In many cases, performance issues can be solved by completing an adjustment in your own garage.

As always, review the safety information and the instructional details in your operator’s manual before performing service or adjustments.

1. Adjust snow blower scraper blade

Depending on frequency of use, contact with your pavement can wear a scraper bar. As it wears, it won’t clear snow as effectively, however, it can be adjusted to compensate for wear.

  1. Carefully tip your snow blower back so its weight rests on the handlebars and secure the unit so it will not tip unexpectedly. [see photo of service position]
  2. Loosen scraper blade hardware at the bottom of housing.
  3. Pull the scraper blade down as far as possible.
  4. Tighten the scraper blade hardware.

After adjusting your scraper blade, you'll need to adjust your unit’s skid shoes. If your scraper blade is worn too far, you can get a replacement at your local Ariens dealer or online at parts.ariens.com.

2. Adjust snow blower skid shoes

The position of the unit's skid shoes regulates the gap between the scraper blade and the clearing surface. As the scraper blade wears or is adjusted, the skid shoes will need to be reset so an effective clearing gap is maintained.

  1. Position a spacer under the left and right sides of the scraper bar.
    • Use a 1/8-inch-thick spacer if clearing paved surfaces
    • Use a 1/2-inch-thick spacer if clearing gravel surfaces
  2. Loosen all skid shoe hardware.
  3. Position skid shoes against clearing surface.
  4. Tighten skid shoe hardware.

If you prefer non-abrasive skid shoes to standard steel skid shoes, you can find them at your local Ariens dealer or online at parts.ariens.com​.

3. Snow blower tire pressure recommendation

Underinflated tires can affect how your snow blower drives. To help ensure the unit maintains grip and drives in a straight line, inflate the tires to adequate, equal tire pressures. On Ariens® Sno-Thro® models, there is no tire pressure recommendation other than the pressure range listed on the tire sidewalls.

4. Adjust snow blower chute cable

Adjust chute deflector
All newer Ariens Sno-Thro models are equipped with an identical chute deflector, or chute cap lever that controls the height of snow discharge. If the deflector doesn't stay at its selected height, tighten the nut on the chute deflector lever under the dash panel.

If the deflector doesn't follow its full range of travel, adjust the chute cable nuts on the deflector.

  • To adjust the deflector lower, loosen the lower nut and tighten the upper nut.
  • To adjust the deflector higher, loosen the upper nut and tighten the lower nut.

After adjustments are made, test the lever to make sure the deflector follows its full range of travel.

Adjust chute rotation
If the discharge chute doesn't remain in the desired direction while throwing snow, adjust it. Depending on the snowblower model, the discharge chute rotation will be adjusted in one of two ways.

Ariens Compact and Deluxe models:

  1. Tighten the nut under the discharge chute gears.
  2. Test discharge chute rotation and repeat adjustment, if necessary.

Ariens Platinum and Professional models:
If discharge chute does not stay in position:

  1. Remove chute gear cover.
  2. Loosen rear adjustment nut and tighten forward adjustment nut until lock arm engages gear teeth.
  3. Test discharge chute rotation and repeat adjustment, if necessary.
  4. Reinstall gear cover.

If discharge chute does not rotate freely:

  1. Remove chute gear cover.
  2. Loosen forward adjustment nut and tighten rear adjustment nut until there is no cable slack and lock arm engages gear teeth.
  3. Reinstall gear cover.

5. Adjust snow blower auger cable

If your snow blower's throwing ability is diminished, the issue could be resolved with one or two simple adjustments. Remember, details and illustrations for the procedures can be found in your operator’s manual.

Check auger clutch cable

  1. Check for slack in auger clutch cable that extends from the right clutch lever to the rear of the frame.
  2. Loosen the jam nut on the cable adjustment barrel and turn barrel down until slack is removed.
  3. Tighten jam nut against adjustment barrel.

Adjust idler position

If the auger cable is already taut or has just been adjusted, you may need to reposition the idler on the attachment arm.

  1. Rotate unit into the service position and remove the bottom cover. [See photo of service position]
  2. Check the distance between the attachment idler arm roller and the frame.
  3. Loosen the adjustment nut on the attachment idler (located under the belt cover) and reposition the idler.

 

6. Adjust snow blower drive cable

If your snowblower isn't driving correctly, it could be corrected by adjusting the drive clutch cable, which extends from the left clutch lever to the rear of the unit’s frame.

  1. Loosen jam nut on the adjustment barrel of the drive cable.
  2. Turn the adjustment barrel down to shorten cable slack.
  3. Tighten the nut against the adjustment barrel.

7. Adjust snow blower track

Snowblower track tension should be within specification and equal. If your track snow blower is pulling to the left or right, adjust the track tension.

  • If snow blower drives to the right, tighten the left track adjuster
  • If snow blower drives to the left, tighten the right track adjuster

If these adjustments don't correct the issues you're experiencing, you can always get help from your local authorized Ariens servicing dealer. Replacement parts like new scraper blades or skid shoes can be ordered online at parts.ariens.com or ​from a snow blower repair shop like your local Ariens dealer.

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