Rated 3.0 out of 5 by 2
Rated 4.0 out of 5.0 by Graybeard The windows could be better
This will be a bit long because there are some eccentricities with this product. To start, overall I'm happy with how this went together. The instructions aren't the greatest but the illustrations help compensate and once you get the primary support frame mounted to the snow blower's handle frame, it goes pretty quickly. I was shorted a 2.75" bolt while given an extra 3.25" bolt but It didn't really matter as the two are basically interchangeable. I ended up with left overs either way.
The longer bolts are for machines with thicker frame tubing but will work with thinner tubing as well. There are multiple brackets for frames of different thicknesses. Take one of each, check them against your handle frames and set the remainder aside because you won't use them and it simplifies the process. They can be a bit tricky to install as you have to hold two brackets as well as the frame piece while pushing the bolt through. The early stages of assembly would have been simpler with an extra set of hands. The brackets aren't u-bolts as I've seen on similar products. They are wider so as to provide more contact with the frame than a u-bolt.
Where the four upper frame pieces meet to form the peak were a bit of a bear to get into position and took some finagling. The material is double thickness in the center of the cab roof but didn't align properly directly over where the upper frame pieces converge. I may go back and see if I can get it centered better because the ends of the tubing will probably have an effect on it eventually. If not, I'll wedge something in between the frame and roof to prevent it from wearing through or wrap the frame peak where it's bolted together with electrical tape.
The cab itself is a bit of a process. It fits snugly so the snaps and Velcro that hold it to the rear of the frame were not the easiest to close. I let it sit in front of our heat register before taking it out to install it and I would definitely leave the cover in a warm space before installing it when the weather is cold. The plastic windows are wrinkly but clear and provide good enough visibility, at least for me. You're not going to be able to read a book through it but it's adequate for the task.(See pictures) Looking through both sides of the cab, I could read the label on my garden spade's handle from six feet away. I used a heat gun(A hair dryer is another option) to smooth it out some but this should be done with caution. Next year I'm going to leave it out in the summer sun and see if nature will help smooth things out.
Overall, it took me around an hour and a half to get it set up. I assembled it in our 10' x 12' shed and didn't have a lot of space to work in with all my other equipment around. It would be easier to assemble in a more open area. I will have to remove the cab to move my snow blower to the garage because it will not clear my shed doors. The height issue will be addressed below.
If I had mounted it similar to the image here it would not have cleared my garage door, which is where I leave my machine through the winter. I mounted the cab frame lower on the snow blower and it will clear our garage door with several inches to spare, still providing headroom for somene around 6' 4" and I'm shorter than that. My base frame configuration will allow for an additional two or three inches so my configuration should be functional for someone up to around 6' 7" or so. This will vary by the snow blower that it's attached to. It can probably be mounted higher on some machines. That's why the term "universal" should be taken into consideration.
The cab removes easily with two hinged frame pins and two straps with clasps on them that secure the cab to the frame that is attached to the handlebars. I showed it to my neighbor who was curious and he loved it, going so far as to consider buying one for his machine. He's stingy and somewhat particular so that's saying something.
It comes with a bag that can be filled with sand to act as a counterweight to the cab's weight but my blower is large enough that I didn't need it.
Caveat: My snow blower has a large panel that accommodates "dash mounted" controls so that limited me a bit in the installation because of how far down the bars the panel runs. I have an Ariens Deluxe 28 so the crank that turns the chute runs through this panel and the lower section of the cab inhibits access to it somewhat. I ended up cutting a slit in the bottom of the cab to accommodate the chute control, sealing the cut fabric with our old friend duct tape. I could have resolved the issue by positioning the cab frame further forward but then I would be partially exposed and the whole point of the thing is to keep from coming inside after clearing snow without looking like old man winter. The lower cab window works well with my blower's headlight with my configuration.
I've read reviews on this same product at other vendors which more or less reflect my experience. While installation requires a bit of patience, I'm satisfied with the finished product. The fabrication of the cab itself leaves a bit to be desired or I would have given it five stars rather than four. I would still recommend it overall.
November 15, 2013
Rated 2.0 out of 5.0 by Bill I would recomend this product if they fix the window problem
Product not packed well plastic windows all wrinkled can not see well out of them .Easy to assemble. If they would fix the problem with the windows it would be great for the price.The front window had a hole in it from one of the frame supports.
October 15, 2013