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First year plowing, need advice on plow setup

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by BetterLawns, Oct 20, 2010.

  1. BetterLawns

    BetterLawns Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    What’s up guys, first post! I own Better Lawns and Gardens landscaping and maintenance, and I have a 2006 F450 Crew Cab with an 11 foot dump bed on it. I was planning on getting into plowing a couple years ago when I bought this truck but I only have 2WD and everyone told me I couldn't plow. But clearly as much of you know that’s not the case, I can plow as long as there’s weight on the rear axle. I've done some research on plows and started looking around on craigslist for a good used one. I did find one in Michigan and it was perfect! 9 foot Fisher Xblade in SS half a season old for $3,500!!! But of corse he sold it within 3 days of posting the ad. Since then I've just found nothing but garbage on eBay and craigslist either they're rusted to sh!t and they want 3 grand or the plow is ancient. I found a local dealer that had quite a bit of knowledge and good prices on Western, Boss, and Fisher plows. To give you an idea on prices here’s what I received in quotes: (Installed, tax, and out the door)

    8.5' X Blade in SS: $5,876
    8.5' Extreme V in SS $6010
    XLS $6,246

    With that said I really want a SS plow because of the way it looks and lasts but if you've seen the XLS video on fisher.com or "ultimate snowplow machine" on YouTube you would know why I’m leaning towards a XLS. Since my truck is so long I'm going to be doing a lot of back dragging, I’m assuming I would need the heaviest plow which is the XLS. I do have two commercial lots ill be plowing where the XLS would really come in handy as well. I’m also still planning on plowing my 15 driveways I was snow blowing last year and picking up another 35 driveways in my town.

    So my questions are:
    -Do you think the XLS would be a good fit for what ill be doing or should I go with one of the other two plows? Or if you have a completely different suggestion let me know.
    -Is 50 (2 car wide 2 car deep) driveways and 2 small commercial lots a good amount of contracts for my truck with a plow and two helpers doing the side walks and front walks? (I don't want to be swamped or not have enough contracts)
    -I was planning on charging about $30 per drive with front walk and sidewalk included, $15 for salting with Calcium Chloride (Half a bag per driveway, it runs $12 per bag). Does this pricing sound about right for residential houses?
    -Does anyone know of a good residential snow plowing contract?

    Sidenote: I have new Continental HDR tires on all six wheels and I already have a Wheelen 90W 6 strobe kit I installed on my truck a couple years ago, and heres a pic of my truck too in case this helps at all:

    Sorry about the novel guys! THANKS in advance!
  2. mycirus

    mycirus Senior Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 589

    That truck you have is not a good driveway rig at all. Instead of putting 6 grand into a plow for a truck thats not going to be ideal, why not look for another truck with a plow in your price range. One thing that comes to mind is the guy who has the 01 reg cabs in TX for 3700. Buy one of them, put a plow on and you are in it for your 6 grand and you will have a good 4x4 truck for plowing. Just my thoughts, others may vary.

    Edit: here is the truck I am talking about.http://www.plowsite.com/showthread.php?t=107355
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2010
  3. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,468

    That's a sweet truck! It won't plow worth a sh!t for what you're planning on plowing though. I could see loading it down with weight and plowing large commercial, but driveways and backdragging will be a PITA. Just my thoughts, I'm sure other comments will conflict with mine.
  4. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    That's not a good driveway rig at all, regardless of the plow you install.

    A used 3/4 ton 4x4 truck would be much faster and suitable. With that large a number of driveways, you might consider a plow with Down Pressure or one that could be modified to provide down pressure (direct lift)
  5. BetterLawns

    BetterLawns Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    Thanks WIPensFan, I love my truck, I wouldn't trade it for anything. Except maybe a 2011 F450... Yea thats what I figured, I know my truck is huge and it wouldn't be easy manuvering especially with small driveways. Maybe ill look into trying to get a couple more parking lots and staying away from residential. I get what you're saying mycirus I might have to look into that as well. There was a junk plow truck I saw down the street from me I could pick up just for this winter. Well what do you guys think about the plows I listed?
  6. WIPensFan

    WIPensFan PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,468

    Those are all nice plows, I love my expandable wing Blizzard. I've also always admired the stainless steel look. Get a V or expandable on your truck.
  7. mrsnowman

    mrsnowman Senior Member
    Messages: 126

    Rather than using your rig, have you thought of trailering a loader behind you. Two guys, one loader with a pusher or plow and a snow blower can get a lot done. I have always had the issue of freeing up our rigs to pull trailers. Maybe that would be a good fit for you. We use an ASV Rc30 with a 5 foot plow with a poly edge. We also have a boxed in 7 foot blade for it. Either way, it will outperform any truck or jeep on a driveway. The only problem is having an extra truck to pull it around.
  8. mrsnowman

    mrsnowman Senior Member
    Messages: 126

    Oh Ya, the down pressure from the loader sure is handy too.
    Your prices sound great if you can get that. Most of our residential in the past have always been around the $15.00 per push range, depending on the size. We had some over $50.00 per push and some as cheap as $8.00. All depends how far between accounts and the time at each location. Of course, always make sure you have a place to stack snow. Most cities don't allow pushing across the street or feathering down the road
  9. BetterLawns

    BetterLawns Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    I've been looking into a few beater trucks for plowing and just wanted to know what you guys thought about plowing with a jeep wrangler? don't bite my head off if its a bad idea I'm new to plowing just trying to get advice before I make a bad purchase.
  10. FordFisherman

    FordFisherman PlowSite.com Addict
    from 06611
    Messages: 1,593

    Jeeps are the ultimate driveway rigs...when I lose my last commercial lot to the lowballers I'm gonna sell my one tons and get a Jeep and plow driveways till the wheels come off man...
  11. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    A Wrangler with a Sno-Way is a great driveway machine.
  12. G&T LAWN

    G&T LAWN Senior Member
    Messages: 149

    Hey SnowDogg makes SS plow 2 for alot less money.