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Discussion Starter #1
I have an opportunity to get a quick hitch setup and 46 blower for my 318. I would be replacing my tall chute 49 blower. I like the idea of being able to upgrade to the 47 blower in the future and I would eventually replace my 54 4 way blade with a quick hitch style too. Is this a good upgrade to pursue? It ends up costing more, but it seems these quick hitches with PTO units are rather scarce.
 

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The quick hitches are harder to find, but if you are only going to use the single stage 46 it is not worth upgrading. It will only move the blower and blade further out the front, not the greatest for tighter areas. However if you do want to upgrade to a 47 two stage it would be worth it. The quick attach 47's are MUCH lighter than the old original style 47's and easier for a 318 to handle!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks jd140. I did note the increase in the overall machine length too. Sometimes I think the increase lift height would be nice which it seems the quick hitch would give me. I would also get hydraulic chute rotation with the 46. I am trying to think long term too for I plan to have the B43G rebuilt in my 318 and therefore thought this setup would give me options years from now.
 

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This is long ... I apologize for that ... A lot here. If I made a mistake feel free to correct me.

First, we all need to be on the same page about 3xx open frame quick hitch.
Attachments
  • Model 47 quick hitch two stage snow blower ... many model 47's available ... correct snow blower for quick hitch is M01471X. That number will be on the serial number plate.
  • Model 51 quick hitch rotary broom ... models 26, 51, 60, 246 available ... model 51 is the 3xx quick hitch model.
  • Model 54 4-way quick hitch blade
  • IMPORTANT: Drive shafts are included with the snow blower and broom. Anyone trying to sell you one of these attachments without the driveshaft is only selling you scrap metal. You have my permission to tell them I said that, The attachment is worthless without it. They are hard to find. And expensive if you do find one.
Misc comments:
  • Above information is as sold by Deere.
  • Other attachments may be added but you personally have to make them fit ... I have a quick hitch two stage IH snow blower. I made the parts to make it fit the 3XX QH. I still need to put together a drive shaft.
  • I have pulleys so I can mount 3xx QH on closed frame tractors with Kohler engines. Unsure if they are spinning at correct rpm to operate snow blower and broom but parts do fit together.
Now, is the upgrade an improvement over model 49 single stage snow thrower and 54 4-way blade. Brooms before this hitch were Allied (other manufacturer approved for use on Deere).
These two age old attachments are hard to beat. They can however have some issues just like the newer quick hitch components.
  • Biggest difference is the model 49's ability to throw snow over the neighbors barn. Personally has never been a problem here in town where I just need it cast it off the driveway and don't bounce it off the neighbors house.
    • Modifications can be made to model 49 to improve performance but it is still just a single stage snow thrower.
    • Switching between blade and snow thrower could be a problem especially for us old dufffers.
    • Still the number of them out there still being used says a lot for these attachments.
  • Quick hitches were the beginning of a new era. You are now able to drop an attachment on pin on a different one in a short time period. The 54 blade you have to personally manhandle unless you make a stand to hold it in upright position. A two stage snow thrower to many is a huge improvement. Where I live we don't get enough snow for me to justify a 47 so I will not comment on its performance other than one thing.
    • Later model model 47's have a plastic impeller with a gap between the impeller and housing that birds can fly through. Lot of complaints about it's performance. Not sure if M01471X service supplied impeller is plastic or steel. Steel is well worth the extra bucks.
  • Model 51 broom added a new feature to the 3XX open frame models. Often used to sweep snow ... I use mine to dethatch my lawn.
Financially, the 318 OH is antiquated. Service parts are NLA from Deere. Hitches and attachments were pricey from Deere and there was not abundance of them sold to the public like the model 49. That means good ole supply and demand takes over. Not many sold means not many parts available and what parts are found are expensive. Another thing is the 3XX QH requires BM18124 PTO drive. No other QH has that requirement.

Don't know if I answered your question but hopefully set some things straight and gave you something to think about. Yes, I have QH's with all the attachments. The ones I use function well and will continue to use them. Also have a model 49 I will be restoring to put on my 140 H3. Won't part with that either until age shuts me down.

Gabby
 
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One more comment. I do not know what you mean in your original question. The single stage model 49 measures 46 inches and is call by some a model 46. There is also a model 46 two stage snow blower available for the 425/445/455. The QH for these model did not have a pto drive kit and drove off the transmission which required a much longer driveshaft. Either way neither of these are the correct snowblower for 3XX QH. Do not waste your money on these. Also, make sure the quick hitch is 3XX style and not for 4x5 tractors. Will not work on your 318.
 
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Discussion Starter #6
Gabby, thank you for the great clarification on the 318 QH and sharing your experience. I am on board with all of the items needed for the QH PTO set up for a snow blower or thrower. The JD Parts site is a wealth of information. I've used it a lot for researching how this QH configuration and ordering miscellaneous parts from the dealer.

The 46 snow thrower (I now remembered not to use blower here) is essentially the single stage quick hitch version of the 49. It has hydraulic chute control though unlike the model 49.

I guess in the end this all comes down to what I want to tinker with. I think I am going to give it a go as I don't like thinking about the could have, would have, should have later on. By the time I buy the QH and drive shaft, I might as well get the 46 blower to with it. I plan to have this tractor for the next 30 years as I have a number of attachments (3 PH, model 30 hydraulic tiller with extension and 3PH setup, 54 four way blade, powerflow with JRCO 18 bushel cart, front mount dethatcher). Might as well as add this to the list for now.

If all goes well, I will get some pics on here in the next week or two.
 

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Sounds like you have enough attachments for another 3XX open frame tractor. I know storage is always an issue. Wish you the best with your collection and building your herd.
 

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Upgrade it. You will like the QH, the 4 way blade and the chute rotation on the 46. I have three 318's with QH blade and 46 thrower as well as a 51 sweepster. One each at our home, business and farm. Took 7 to 10 years of watching and buying when the different items showed up. Well worth it in terms of continuing to take care of three properties at age 79.

Recently added a 455 and QH with blade at the farm. 46 thrower and 51 sweepster from the 318 mount up to the 455 Just need the long PTO shaft with bearing & mount.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Gabby, actually I am in the process of thinning the herd a little. I have another 318 with a 23 hp Vanguard, a 212 with blade and tiller, and a really nice 332. My first was the 212. That got me hooked as I starting researching what else I could do with it.

Thank you, Loren. Well I did just that today. I got the QH and 46 blower home about an hour ago. I was pleasantly surprised to see the QH had the blade angling cylinder on it! Now I just need the blade. I hope to get it on this week and will update then.
 
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