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Am I on the right track?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by Shortstuff, Feb 13, 2009.

  1. Shortstuff

    Shortstuff Member
    Messages: 94

    I just purchased a 2004 Ram 2500 SLT 4x4 QC/SB Hemi with 45,000 miles on her. Whoever purchased it new had a snow-prep package and tow package installed right from the factory. A close inspection reveals that it has never had a plow attached. They just put a set of new OEM tires (B.F. Goodrich Rugged Trail T/A's) which are not rated the greatest in snow, but I'm guessing they will be fine for plowing. The only thing I don't like about this truck is that it has an open-differential (non-limited slip) which I'll never understand why it's not standard equipment on a 4x4.

    I traded in my '03 Ram 1500 SLT 4x4 RC/SB Hemi because I wanted to start plowing my own driveway which normally takes almost 3 hours to shovel/snow-throw after a good storm. I think I've got the right truck for what I want to do and I'm hoping to pick up a Fisher HD 8' plow by next fall. Other than the required 260 lbs. of ballast (for that plow), should I be all set or is there anything else that I should concider adding to my list?

    This is my very first post and I'm impressed with the knowledge that is available here, I've learned so much in only a couple of weeks! Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Below is a pic of my *new* '04.



  2. Camden

    Camden PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,594

    That truck will handle a 8' plow just fine the way it is.

    Good luck
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2009
  3. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,780


    Just check to make sure you are not overloading the front tires and you are good to go.
  4. MileHigh

    MileHigh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,827

    260 pounds of ballast will do absolutely nothing....

    I would at least triple that weight.
  5. BigDave12768

    BigDave12768 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,446

    I wouldnt triple it at all. unless you want weight for traction in 2wd. That front end will barely drop when you pick up the plow. So I wouldnt worry about Ballast. My 04 CTD barely moves when I pick up a Xbalde thats 80 pounds heavier than the 8ft mm2. Dont listen to the Ford and Chevy guys who's front ends sag when they pick up plow. But nice truck. Nothing plows like a Dodge they by are the best at it. Tires are fine also.
  6. augerandblade

    augerandblade PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,054

    Im a Chevy guy but I also own a 08 Dodge 2500HD keep the option of ballast open cuz it does make for better plowing IMO. Make sense doesnt it , if ya put 800lbs on the front ya balance the weight by adding ballast
  7. Shortstuff

    Shortstuff Member
    Messages: 94

    Easy guys, we all know that Dodge makes the best trucks! (just kidding)

    I only say 260 lbs. of ballast because after using the selection guide on the Fisher website, it is their recommendation not mine. Because of my lack of limited-slip, every pound helps over the rear end and I was considering more than the 260 lbs. anyway.

    Also, the GAWR for my front axle is 2359 and the tires are load range "E".

  8. theplowmeister

    theplowmeister 2000 Club Member
    from MA
    Messages: 2,514

    That seams a little low, my Jeep wrangler has a 2500# f axle.
  9. Shortstuff

    Shortstuff Member
    Messages: 94

    You're absolutely right, those numbers are low. I mis-read them. :dizzy:

    The 2359 was in KG. The front axle is rated 5400 lbs. and the rear axle is rated for 6000 lbs..

  10. Krieger91

    Krieger91 Senior Member
    Messages: 353

    OK, that's better. I was about to say that the front axle on my S-10 Blazer is rated to like 2,300 or 2,400.

    Even though I'm not a Dodge fan, you should be just fine with that truck. I would go with a little more than the recommended ballast, but that's a personal opinion kind of thing.
  11. Dubliner

    Dubliner Senior Member
    Messages: 130

    My Dodge is the best plowing truck I have had so far I run Yokahama Geolanders and have no problems at all with traction sometimes I throw a little sand in the back just for those little Whoops that happen every so often. LOL;)
  12. MileHigh

    MileHigh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,827

    It's not about how much your truck's front end sags...It's about countering the weight of the plow hanging 2 and a half feet off the front of your truck...It's to help your front end out. That's why you put ballast as far up against the tailgate as possible. :nod: They actually did a test on this, and it showed that ballast will take substantial weight off of your front tires.

    I swear man....guys that run no ballast:confused::confused:

    Get real...everyone knows that Dodges and GM's sag way more than Ford's do in the front...And there suspension's are much softer than Fords....Ford's ride like real trucks, not like Hyundai's with V-8's

    Plus we have the solid front axle's...not that sedan IFS chit.

    Face it...All three plow good....Dodges are just ugly as hell ;)

    No bashing intended.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2009
  13. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,780

    12345678910 ten characters blah blah blah.
  14. BigDave12768

    BigDave12768 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,446

    In Model Year 1999 what brand copy the Dodge front end? Now you Ford guys are trying to say Dodge copied Fords with the 2010's More like its always been a Dodge design. At least Chevy stuck with there own design. So seeing you own a Ford. i can tell you love the Dodge front end. Or you think your Ford is the Ugliest thing on the road
  15. Ipushsnow

    Ipushsnow Senior Member
    Messages: 314

    Got the same truck, but an 05. Put 1,000 pounds in the rear and use some 2x6's to keep it in place as far back as possible.

    Your front end will love you and the extra weight is good for plowing.
  16. Pristine PM ltd

    Pristine PM ltd PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,794

    ??? He is plowing his own driveway!!! After plowing his own driveway he will most likely use this truck for other purposes... don't waste the gas on the ballast. You will be fine with an 8 foot blade. Get good at taking it on and off if you don't get a ton of events per year, and don't get suckered into helping out the neighbourhood!

  17. Ipushsnow

    Ipushsnow Senior Member
    Messages: 314

    IF your just doing your driveway screw the ballast. If you are going to drive around town at all have ballast in. Don't know about the kind of plow you are getting, but my 8'2 Boss poly V dips my front end quite a bit. The ballast keeps me from hitting the road all the time when going over bumps. Yeah, I know I could raise the plow by straightening out the ends a little bit, but I do almost all city driving and its nice to be as skinny as possible at times.

    And as a side note, the tires you got are good for plowing. Not the best, but for the money they are very nice. I just got two new ones at the beginning of the season.
  18. windrowsnow

    windrowsnow Senior Member
    from nw ohio
    Messages: 168

    balast? only truck i have weight in the back of is my dump and its the salter......my 2004 dodge plows awesome empty.
  19. SuperdutyShane

    SuperdutyShane PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,517

    No bashing intended. - BladeScape

    Bash away..
    Ford is where its at :D