Craftsman snow blower

jscozzDecember 22, 2009

I decided to pick up a Craftsman 88830 snow blower. It is in the Pro line, and looks exactly like the Troy Bilt 357 cc XP model that Lowes sells for $70 more without drift cutters.

It is also one that was rated tops by Consumer Reports (they rated the Troy Bilt #1 and stated that this one was a similar model.)

Does anyone know for sure if Troy Bilt makes these for Craftsman?

Also, I have not seen it yet (not in store), but has anyone tried to fit a 357cc blower into the back of an Explorer? Anyone have one of these? Hopefully good experience...

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canguy(British Columbia)

Craftsman is Sears in house brand, they source it from several manufacturers. The first three digits of the model number indicate the manufacturer, 950 is Murray, 944 indicates EHP, and 459 says MTD who do not seem to be currently supplying many snow blowers to Sears.
Troybilt is built by MTD, the consumer needs to be careful here. Many machines are showing up with Chinese engines of dubious quality.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2009 at 12:11AM
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I have read that some of the larger engines are still B&S... it is hard to get any details from Sears on this model (they list it only as a "Craftsman" engine. Not store stocked... and all reviews I have read that talk very highly of it, do not mention engine manufacturer. I guess I'll find out in a week.

    Bookmark   December 23, 2009 at 2:52PM
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I just worked on a brand new Sears blower with a "Craftsman" 208 cc engine. I guess Briggs didn't want to put their name on it. The owner thought it was too much trouble to go through their warranty service and asked me to fix it instead.

From new, it was very difficult to start. The carb had some matter inside and when it did start, the choke had to be left partially ON for it to run without a miss.

Removed, cleaned, and blew out all the passageways. Runs well now. Found that if you prime and choke as the manual suggests, it will flood. Choke only, was the best way.

Everything about the engine and unit, built by MTD, seems mediocre quality, even though it appears to be a high priced unit.

My initial opinion of this Chinese wonder....if it doesn't start, replace the engine.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 8:29AM
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JSCoss: I have utilized a second hand Craftsman for three yrs. I picked up the unit from a buddy who repairs units sells any units worth resale. The unit is 1995 excellent condition. I just replaced the Belts and friction wheel this yr. I have Heavy Snow fall and the units has fared well . The Unit has a Snow King Engine since the Original Owner (elderly) did not maintain Oil requirements and Scuffed the Cyl. and Rings. maintain your unit and use common sense and I would believe you will not have any serious issues. Remember to inspect prior to usage in Fall and Lubricate all bearing and ensure proper belt tension , Chain Lubrication etc. The majority of blower downfalls are operator related negligience ..Good Luck !

    Bookmark   December 25, 2009 at 12:16PM
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