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Cleanng down to blacktop

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by Grn Mtn, Dec 29, 2004.

  1. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    With the big storm totals in the Midwest, there have been lots of posts of how to clean the driveway back to black. My first thought is this: Its noble to believe we must leave the driveway clean and black, but honestly if you hire a snow plow service your expectation should be that you no longer have to get up at 5am to shovel your driveway, and that is it. Lawn damage and a little bit of snow left behind is the down-side to your luxury. Now before I get slammed for saying that, what separates the men from the boys :p is if you can exceed those expectations, and that takes specialized equipment, expertise, and a general love for plowing. If you like what you do it shows up in your work, If you have the right equipment, things go smoothly and look finished when done, and if you have some experience you don't look like an idiot while doing it. :dizzy:

    2 of the 3 things I listed is up to you, but the equipment part I can recommend: Get a salter and a back-drag edge. The edge will clean down to pavement, setting you apart from a lot of your competition, and the salter will help you when you do start to get accumulations of hardpack and ice, plus its a great way to make some extra scratch payup
  2. maurader

    maurader Member
    Messages: 37

    I agree with your post but I was wondering how much of a market is there for salting driveways? In 11 years of plowing here I have never had a customer ask about salting. Maybe it's something that you have to mention first to get a response.
    BTW, my Fisher x-blade backdrags great without a back-drag edge. I found that out while backdragging a path from my house to the driveway across the grass. Little clumps of grass popped out everywhere and that never happened with my Western before. oh well.
  3. DSLL

    DSLL Senior Member
    Messages: 136

    i just take the shoes off my western and it gets down to the black top no problem. but its a pain to have to go out and put the shoes back on when i have to plow a stone driveway
  4. scuba875

    scuba875 Senior Member
    Messages: 250

    When I started plowing for a guy 13 years ago I use to do a paver drive and would back drag the whole drive, very slowly I might add. This drive was about 100' long 2 car width with a 25 x 25 parking area. What a pain but it would look good when it was done. I just remeber how tense I used to get on that drive :cry: . I used to get out and walk the drive when I was done because I was so worried about screwing the bricks up. This guy I worked for took the shoes off all of his plows so I have never used them. Do you guys think its better to have them on or off and what about on pavers? He said they did more damage than they did good. I guess I just figured no one used them.
  5. maurader

    maurader Member
    Messages: 37

    I used to use shoes all the time until I lost one and then I just said why bother. The way I had them adjusted with a 1/4" clearance they didn't make much difference anyways. I did notice they left marks on the blacktop though.
    I would only use shoes now if I plowed gravel but I have no desire to scratch my plow so I refuse to do those. There aren't many of those around so it's not a problem anyways.
  6. LINY Rob

    LINY Rob Senior Member
    Messages: 478

    the rubber edges work great for the pavers, if you end up lifting one out its not a big deal to pop them back in anyhow.
  7. jhook

    jhook Senior Member
    Messages: 375

    Rubber cutting edge is definately the way to go. I plow commercially and ran a rubber cutting edge on my Arctic plow for 2 years. I sold that plow this spring and the guy still has the same rubber on there. I just used a piece of 1 inch thick used conveyor rubber 8" wide and drilled bolt holes in it. I got myself a couple of Blizzard 810's this year and decided to try them as they come but will likely rig up some rubber for next year. I also found that my plow tripped less and was very forgiving when it came to grass and gravel.

    I haven't used the plow shoes for years, just don't like them hanging there. Would rather just lift my blade a bit. Thies year, with the 810's I decided I would try the shoes out. That lasted part way through my first snowfall when I got hung up on a curb and couldn't back up. After jerking loose I realized I had bent my shoe. Yanked it off and been doing fine without it since :)
  8. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644


    The x-blade was not an option at the time, but I hear you're correct, the sharper angle does bite a lot better.
  9. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    I did the same thing last year, they cut the shoes off when they put on the backdrag edge.
  10. Rsibill

    Rsibill Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    Response to JHOOK

    I just used a piece of 1 inch thick used conveyor rubber 8" wide and drilled bolt holes in it.

    GREAT IDEA... where can I find conveyor rubber like that?

  11. Robhollar

    Robhollar Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    Hey Grn Mtn,

    Please no more green text, that was worse then snow blindness....Rob
  12. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    Yeah, sorry about that, I didn't think it was going to be so bright. For future reference, spread some of that black stuff sports guys wear under their eyes before reading my posts :D
  13. Toby

    Toby Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 132

    Screw That...They're Lucky if there's less than a 1/4" of Hard Pack Left on the Res...Besides BlackTop Can be More Slippery than a Coating.