Question re snow blower friction plate?

Snow blower stopped 'driving' after two passes. Its a very ordinary about 6 HP horizontal shaft Tecumseh (very similar to B&S) and about 28 inch wide.
Expecting it to be a 'drive chain off' problem, as in the past, took bottom plate off.
No problem, both chains were on their cogs and the job I did last year replacing the main wheel bearings and getting the position of the chain drive cogs in line (so that the chain would not drive off) is fine.
Everything appears to work; when the drive handle is operated the friction disk moves (backwards in this case) in whatever position it is in from Fast Forward to Reverse (all that works OK). The friction disk does contact the rubber drive pulley and the rubber pulley is properly attached to its cross shaft and turns it. There is spare travel so it is not that the friction disk is not moving far enough or anything is restricting its contact with the rubber pulley.
However and this is the question. The friction plate is pretty shiny in most areas, also the rubber pulley is also shiny. So much so that at first thought it was polished or even oily. It's not.
So should I 'roughen up' the friction plate, sand paper or grind/sand disc it off? Same with the rubber pulley wheel (it's about 4 inch diameter and has like a rubber tire on its perimeter.
Because the only thing at moment is that while we do need to tune up the motor, adjust the carb, we have installed new plug, and brand new belts of the right type etc. The main problem was that it stopped driving (moving ahead or back). Could 'slipping' cause all that even at lowest speed?
Moving it manually into garage to work on, I noticed we have a very bad skid plate on one side; that was also 'hooking' into the ground and causing part of the problem too!
Any advice welcomed (begged!).
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terry wrote:

I'm gonna venture a guess that there should be some kind of spring which pulls the rubber wheel against the friction disk, whereafter the geometery and driving force on the rubber wheel acts to press it even harder against the friction disk.
And, that spring broke and got lost.
Can you scout up a manual for your snow blower which would have a drawing showing if there should be a spring there?
Good Luck,
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
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On Sun, 04 Jan 2009 16:48:39 -0500, Jeff Wisnia

I'd venture to bet your guess is wrong, from 40 years experience using snow blowers (and fixing the durn things)
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On Mon, 05 Jan 2009 13:31:41 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

The actuating cable may have a little too much slack in it and need adjustment. If it is too slack, the friction disk will slip. This is a VERY easy adjustment to do.
You can probably download an owners manual from the manufacturers website that will have instructions. It has to do with measuring the distance between the end of the lever and the handlebar under certain conditions.
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On Mon, 05 Jan 2009 13:48:28 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

A glazed disk and drive wheel will slip when wet regardless of the cable adjustment. My last blower brfore my current one had a solid mechanical linkage through a spring and it slipped when wet untill I replaced both the metal and rubber components.
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On Sun, 4 Jan 2009 12:33:22 -0800 (PST), terry

When the friction drive gets wet, it doesn't drive if the rubber and the plate are glazed. Try a shot of oven cleaner on the plate - the caustic will remove any oil and etch the glaze. It also puts a bit of "tooth" on the rubber. Rinse well about 20 minutes after application and let dry before using.
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On Jan 4, 6:55pm, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

The friction plate is moved into contact with the rubber wheel by pulling the drive lever/handle. A cable from the lever moves the friction plate via a spring in the cable into position it appears to be moving all the way and the spring in the cable doesn't seem to be tired/weak. The spring determines how much pressure is exerted to pull the friction plate onto the rubber drive wheel. But will tighten up cable and clean friction plate as suggested. Thanks for suggestions.
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Chain drives the wheels...but a V-belt drives the plate. Is the belt glazed or loose?
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