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ATV Efficiency, why?

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by PerfiCut L&L, Dec 15, 2005.

  1. PerfiCut L&L

    PerfiCut L&L Senior Member
    Messages: 178

    Im seeing more and more people using and talking about using, ATV's in this business. Im looking at getting one myself for a variety of reasons.

    One thing Im wondering is, if your using an ATV, then I assume your not charging by the hour, otherwise it wouldnt make much sense to be efficient.

    In my case, I have a mix, some lots I charge a flat rate, some I charge hourly, now by using an ATV I can save quit a bit of time in the end sure. But I would make less money, since I'd be shorting myself on the hourly lots, plus the cost of the operator. Unless we took on additional customers, using an ATV wouldnt be as profitable.

    Example. 5 Lots takes 8 hours to complete all with one pass at 2-3". Buy using an ATV, I figure to save 1-2 hours, which is great, but unless its snowing heavily enough to accumulate another 2-3" in that 6 hr period, there would be a period of down town. Now, unless I fill this down time with another job, using an ATV would have actually cost more than Its worth, since you have to pay for the operator, and fuel, and you cut your 8 hr round down to 6. Am I correct to assume that this would be the case?
  2. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    How exactly do you figure to save time on a lot by using an ATV? Do you mean as opposed to a truck? Maybe a sidewalk you could do faster than shoveling or blowing, but certainly not a large open area. Here's some info for comparison purpose: My driveway is about 75' long by 25' wide, uphill 3/4 stone surface, large garage at top. I used to plow it with an 8 foot Fisher, took me about ten minutes including a little cleanup around the mailbox. Then I started using a 5 foot plow on a Polaris 700 Sportsman. Took 40 minutes, was way more fun. Last year I used a 24" 2 stage snowthrower, also took me 40 minutes, not much fun but did the nicest job. This year using Blizzard 810, down to only 5 minutes. I liked plowing with my ATV, but I would never have gone around the neighborhood looking for plowing work, because it just takes too long. One of my neighbors rides around the neighborhood on a JD rider lawnmower with a snowthrower, does a couple neighbor driveways, takes hime forever and doesnt do as neat a job as a walk-behind thrower.
  3. Makndust

    Makndust Senior Member
    Messages: 324

    Where the ATV's shine is doing the fine work, next to curbs, buildings, etc. When we pull onto the school system they have a bunch of curbs to cut snow away from. If I have the ATV do I, he can get a lot closer. That gives me 5 feet to work with on my first pass. He can plow up against curbs much faster than I can. I also like the idea of his little plow klanking up against a curb instead of my 9'2" Boss V plow. Each person has their own business model that works for them. This works the best for us.
  4. gpin

    gpin Senior Member
    Messages: 390

    We like the ATV because it's fun, (but very cold) and more fun in the off season. Also there are opportunities to pick them up for the right price. 20yr+ olds buy them and depend on their friends with trucks to take them out and the units end up in the garage. And once the 1/8th " layer of dust settles on them, bingo: 1/2 price sale on a 4x4 unit with less than 10 hours.
  5. mrplowdude

    mrplowdude Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    As far as money you should make the same or more. Charge more for a piece of equipment figuring that you can do the job quicker.
    For example a backhoe witha 14' pusher will get a lot more than a 1 ton with a 8' plow. But in the end it will come close to the same amount of money for you.