I greased the u-joints, assembled the gearbox to the piece of the mule drive that attaches to the tractor (without the auger at the moment!). I always baste the bolts in never seize on re-assembly.
As I was doing this, I recall reading this post
about PTO belt alignment and how the 82 series engine is not mounted parallel to the frame. I hadn't noticed any misalignment before (I'd been chewing up belts like they were candy, but they were the wrong belts and the wrong pulley . . . I digress). but figured I'd check anyway. Having the snow thrower frame separated from the snow thrower, I figured this was the perfect time to check the alignment.
Go figure . . . Its off by a few degrees . . . definitely less than 90˚. I recall @cmiller
mentioned his measurement was ~3.5-4.5˚. As a remedy, @mgonitzke
made tapered washer spacers to attach the sliding mounting plate. That got it aligned ~2˚. I'm trying a slightly different variation on the same theme . . . I made larger spacers to mount the gear box to the sliding plate so the movement on the plate is not changed at all. Here are some pics . . .
I'm a bit surprised at how close the belt is to the gear box housing when it just hangs freely like that. Essentially, I'm going to need to get the pulley just about all the way up the shaft.
Just now I'm checking my angle against the picture of @mgonitzke
's shims and it looks like he shimmed the top one where I needed to shim the bottom one which leads me to believe there might be something wrong. I noticed this assembly pivots on the quick attach pins and bolts to the frame in with two bots. The slots where these bolts go are pretty shot which allows the thrower to sag a bit and increases the angle. I need to do something to tighten that play up a bit, but perhaps it is the sag that is throwing out this angle. I was all happy until I revisited that shim pic! Curious what others have to say.