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Central Hydraulics

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by SnowGodFather, Jan 12, 2003.

  1. SnowGodFather

    SnowGodFather Member
    Messages: 330

    Anyone run cenrtal hydraulic plows?

    Also for salt spreaders?

    Pro's / Con's?

    I can see for salt spreaders and dump bodies. If I am going to splurge for the extra few grand for it over seprate systems.

    Plow pump, body pump, salt spreader engine.
  2. ProSno

    ProSno Senior Member
    Messages: 257

    I have a 94 ford f-350 diesel flatbed dump with central hydraulics. Personaly its a pain in the a$$ plow is slow, sander okay, dump body fair. Electric over hydraulic plow would be much nicer.
  3. fordman

    fordman Senior Member
    Messages: 327

    There's alot more switches to use when running central hydro for plowing. Everythings not in the palm of your hand. Talk to Pelican, I'm pretty sure he's running central hydro in his new snowfighter.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2003
  4. Pelican

    Pelican 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,075

    I've used both systems and I prefer the central hydraulics. My truck is set up so that it's every bit as fast as any electric plow out there, in fact, flow restrictors had to be installed to slow the plow down for safe use. I've got levers instead of a toggle switch, but I've learned since my purchase that you can get solenoid activated valves to run the plow if you wish.

    On my sander, I'd never go back to the pony motor that I had on my V-box. I haven't had any problems what so ever with this sander, while the Town's gas powered units that I work beside have been in for service almost every storm. I just flip a switch to activate the pump and pull a lever to run the spreader. See this thread for photos of my system.

    I didn't like the idea of redundant pumps on my truck, so everything runs off the same one. It doesn't put much draw on the truck's electrical system either, which is comforting on long jobs. The lights dim on my Blizzard equipped truck when I run the pump, this makes me a bit nervous when I have a lot of driveways close to each other.
  5. SnowGodFather

    SnowGodFather Member
    Messages: 330

    I've seen the pics of your truck, it is a beautifull truck, but you added a truck load of unnessary weight to it. Isn't the GVW on that truck 18k?

    I am looking in at the just under CDL trucks. 25,590 gvw.

    Older Chevy Kodiak, GMC Topkick, IHC 4600,4700 all Lo-Pro, all diesel.

    I am looking for this kind of system because I still have to buy hydraulics for a dump body, so might as well get the central instead of pto so I can use for a v box spreader. It's rather close in price.

    The plow doesn't have to be on the system. I like the cabcommander from western.
  6. phillyplowking1

    phillyplowking1 Senior Member
    Messages: 412

    If the price isnt that much more i would go with the central hydro system.
  7. SnowGodFather

    SnowGodFather Member
    Messages: 330

  8. phillyplowking1

    phillyplowking1 Senior Member
    Messages: 412

    go with the central hydro
  9. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    If your plow is slow it's because there is a flow restrictor or divider in there somewhere that is too small or set too low. The central pump probably makes at least 15 GPM at idle, most electric pumps make a couple gallons. Every system I've seen has had some sort of flow divider to limit flow to the plow side of the system, and they have all used an adjustable flow divider so you could get what you wanted for plow speed.

    There's a couple ways to do it, the most common puts the divider ahead of the plow controls. Controlled flow goes to the plow and the rest goes to run the dump and spreader. It can also be set up to give you controlled flow to the spreader and the rest goes to dump and plow, then you can use flow limiters in the plow lines. That keeps spreader speed constant, which may or may not be desireable.

    I've seen systems with manual controls or with solenoid valves. The solenoids are convenient, you can put all the controls on one small switch bank right on the shifter of a manual transmission. They are also pricey compared to manual valves.

    My preference would be centrals on any truck with a dump body. Also I would have either a front discharge spreader or an undertailgate unit. With either of those you have use of the truck any time you need it with no vee box to load and unload.
  10. SnowGodFather

    SnowGodFather Member
    Messages: 330

    With those spreaders, I would need a much more expensive bed that can still rust out. Plus still need to buy the $2500 or so spreader part.

    10' Stainless V box I can get for $5k hydro or gas.

    I have a lift and storage is no problem.

    Just trying to cover angles I haven't though of yet.

    I am starting to like the central and a completely seprate plow system.

    What about the Blizzard 810SS model hooked to central hydraulics? It has the solenoid switches and such?
  11. Pelican

    Pelican 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,075

    SGF, you're correct, there was about 1000 lbs weight penalty for mt set up, but I bought it for the convenience that Alan has described, I can have the truck converted from hauling to sanding in ten minutes with just a 9/16 wrench. You can check this thread to see a unit the size you're speaking of. The truck weighs less than one with the dump body plus v-box installed, but I carry this weight year round.

    For a truck that size, you'd want the Blizzard 8611, and from what I understand, they can be set up to run off central hydraulics. Check with Jerre Heyer on this.
  12. ProSno

    ProSno Senior Member
    Messages: 257

    Alan, your right there is a valve under the hood (total pain to get to) but if I switch it one way the plow gets very quick but I loose sander flow. I'm thinking of mabey routing the valve inside the cab were I can switch it at will. I totally forgot it was there. Looks like I have a mission for the week.:eek:
  13. SnowGodFather

    SnowGodFather Member
    Messages: 330

    Yeah but that bed can't be converted to a flat bed. I hate pushing pallets in and then having to chain pull them to reach with the forks.

    So I guess you gotta find out what your give and take is.

    I am not worried about overloading with salt as not many DOT officials out durring the snow, but the rest of the year that extra 1000 or so plays a dramatic difference.

    I add up the wieight of truck, skid steer, trailer, driver etc... I come in around 25,000#, so that extra 1000 could put me in a ticket.
  14. dillyolboy

    dillyolboy Member
    Messages: 97

    central hydraulics are the only way to go

    On my truck I have a hydraulic clutch pump running off the crankshaft via an accessory belt. At an idle my front blade angles a tad slower than a brand new Boss straight blade with the electric system. Rev the engine up to 3000 rpm and it flat out flies. They are also far more reliable with no solenoids burning out etc. Much less electical load i.e. the heater doesn't shut off when you lift the blade and they last for years and years.

    The person you should talk to is Jon Geer. He has a Honda motor running a hydraulic pump which goes to his valves and a hydraulic reservoir. All this is inside a nice looking little steel box in the front of the box of his truck. Then he has his hydraulic hoses running out of that to his blades. All the controls are in the cab; on/off for the engine, throttle control and the switches to control the blades. IMO, this is an extremely sweet setup. The only problem I could think of is that the Honda engine must be kind of annoying after a while? The definite advantage of this system over the kind I have is that you always have constant hydraulic pressure.
  15. cat320

    cat320 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,222

    I think that it is a great way to go ,but what i think stops most of us is the cost factor. say you have a dump ,sander and plow set up how much more is it to run with seperate motors and pumps verses going central?
  16. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    If you went to set up a small dump truck say 1 ton to 2 ton ( f 350 to F 550). I really don't think there is a cost savings for a truck with a plow, body, and sander. I think upfront it may cost you a few bucks more to buy the central hydro system, however down the road the cost savings will appear. No body pumps failing, no sander motor problems, and no plow pump motors.

    However for a central system to work correctly, you need to decided at the start thats the way you want to go. If you try to do it piece by piece it isn't going to ever save you any money. If you want a cental system, find a good upfitter, bring them a truck with 2 frame rails from cab back. Don't get a truck with a body on it from a pooling company, if you do that you have allready gone backwards. Why you ask? Well you are now stuck with a pump from the pooling co. Tell the upfitter you want the body, plow, and sander all off the same system. This will allow him to credit the cost of the electric body and plow pump.

    It will probably cost a few bucks more up front then having a truck with an electric hoist, electric plow pump, and a gas powered sander. However you have 1 pump on this system, and down the road it will be more reliable. However it cost more because its not the mainstream way to do things.

    Oh one more thing, spec the right pump. If you decided down the road you may want a sander, or a wing, or whatever. Tell the upfitter to calculate a bigger pump.

  17. Pelican

    Pelican 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,075

    And that one pump will be a lot more productive than the other pumps.
    Offhand, I think my pump is 11 gpm, I can raise a full load of item 4 at idle. I can give it a little throttle while the first section of the hoist is raising, but after that i let it idle, the body goes up too fast otherwise.

    Geoff, a question:

    My two plow control valves freeze up in sub 25 degree weather, but the other two valves right beside them don't. They are all attached as a common bank, any ideas why? I've found if I let the truck fast idle with the pump on for ten minutes, the oil warms them so they work.
  18. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    Do you store you truck outside? If this problem is only occuring when you first start you run it is just the cold. My advice start her up, go inside for a cup of coffee then start the run. All our big trucks are stored inside so we don't have this problem, however the next town over leaves them all outside. They come in, start them up and let them warm up for 20 mins, to get the oil warmed.

  19. Pelican

    Pelican 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,075

    Unfortunately I don't have a garage, so yes, it's outside. As you said, once it's warmed up it's not a problem, it sounds as if this is a normal condition. I'll keep that in mind, thanks!
  20. Arc Burn

    Arc Burn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,138

    Pelican,you leave that beautifull truck OUTSIDE!!!why i oughta ..........just kiddin,they see worse conditions out plowin so she's alright,i like to pull mine in and let it dry off after the storm so i can go over it,check her out,i also like to leave it in before a big snow to keep the snow off....i could go on and on but i'll stop cause i'm probably depressing you:(