I got the 216 ready for snow and the swivel on the blade kicked my ass for longer than I’d like to admit. Not sure how many 216s are still in service, mine’s 40 years old, but maybe this could help someone.
The snow chains went on easy, I just jacked the rear end up a few inches off the ground and rolled the chains over the tires. In the past I’ve tried laying out the chains and rolling the wheels on top, but that was more difficult than jacking it up. I leave the wheel weights on all year round for extra traction.
The blade wasn’t as hard to attach as in the past, probably because I’ve done it a few times now and know how it attaches. However, when I went to attach the linkage handle to swivel the blade from side to side, it would not go together.
No matter how I tried, I could not attach the swivel handle to the swivel bar (highlighted in the blue square). I knew from previous years that it shouldn’t be that hard to do. Also, I couldn’t seem to manually use the swivel bar and swivel the blade. I have a manual for everything else that attaches to the 216, but not the blade, so I went to Duck Duck Go to search the internet.
I found an image of a blade already attached that showed me my issue. The swivel bar on my blade had been turned horizontal and it should be vertical; however, I could not get it to go vertical. Somehow in storage the blade must have been hyper extended and allowed it into the horizontal position.
I didn’t want to take the blade off again to figure it out, so I unhooked the swivel bar where it pins onto the mount and with a couple hits with a hammer got it off and back on in the correct orientation. The handle attached just as I thought from there.
There’s always that one thing that doesn’t want to play nice when you’re trying to hurry, but now I’m ready for a few inches of snow. If we get much more than that, then I’ll be putting the chains, the really heavy ones, on the Cub Cadet compact tractor and attaching the grader blade.