I think you'll find the tracked blower has at least twice the traction of the wheeled blower, especially on an uphill grade. This fall I purchased an Ariens 926056 Hydro Pro 28 Tracked blower. It replaces an older Ariens ST824 wheeled blower. The wheeled blower still works fine, but has been relocated to replace a 1974 Craftsman blower that has been retired.
The wheeled Ariens did a good job, but slipped a lot trying to get through heavily packed snow at the apron of the driveway. Even with the wheels locked the machine slipped and slid sideways on the incline. The new tracked blower is almost unstoppable. It chews through the same snow without any hesitation. There's no slipping or sliding. Just straight ahead clearing of the snow.
The upsides of the new blower are:
No slipping on incline
More Powerful (14 HP vs. 8HP)
Longer discharge distance (65' vs. 40')
Wider clearing distance (28" vs,24")
Hydrostatic drive vs. belt drive
Easier chute rotation and elevation change
5 levels of intake auger elevation
Cuts through ice and frozen snow blocks with no trouble
Heated hand grips
The downsides are:
Much Heavier (331 lbs. vs. 195 lbs.)
Less chute rotation (200* vs. 220*)
Much harder to move when not under power
When under power the new machine runs like a dream. It's easy to maneuver and has plenty of traction. I have to be careful as to the discharge chute elevation and direction to avoid blowing ice and snow into the neighbors drive or onto their roof. It's very easy to operate and requires no pushing to get through the largest snow piles.
When not under power it's a beast to move. The hydrostatic transmission can be disengaged to pull the machine backwards. Even with the transmission disengaged it takes considerable effort to move it. It's far easier to start and move the machine under its own power than to try to move it manually.
Here's a link to a picture of the new Ariens:http://www.snowblowe...ct_8621_225.jpg
Edited by projectnut, January 16, 2016 - 09:47 AM.