1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

looking to get into atv plowing

Discussion in 'ATV / UTV Snow Removal' started by mrplowpa, Jan 28, 2011.

  1. mrplowpa

    mrplowpa Junior Member
    from pa
    Messages: 19

    Hi there --

    I've been surfing around looking at a bunch of the awesome pictures of atv plow set-ups that you guys have.... definitely getting me thinking. I've been wanting to get a plow, but really didn't want to slap it on my dually because its so big, and I want to save my truck --- and the ATV option is perfect....

    So I know I'm going to ask the most basic question --- and before anyone freaks out :gunsfiring: about how to use the search function...I have... but I was just interested in some advice for what to look for. I'd be looking to use the atv to plow driveways in the winter, and also take it out in the woods in the summer (it would be a perfect addition to our toy hauler).... I really don't know much about the different brands/types/set-ups, so any info is greatly appreciated. And like I said, the set ups out there look awesome, love looking at the pics

    thanks
     
  2. BlueRam2500

    BlueRam2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 765

    First of all welcome to Plowsite and the world of ATV plowing. I bought my Foreman brand new in '07 with the plow after I sold my 350 Rancher. The Foreman to me was the perfect choice because its a good size bike for me (I am 6'4, 290lbs) and its not such an expensive bike where if I let it sit in the garage for most of the winter I would not be mad that I was paying for it and not using it.

    Anyway, the plow I got is a 52" Cycle Country plow that the dealer through in a power angle setup for free. It utilizes a push tube mount that was super easy to install as well as the power angle, which is great, but the cable broke on me the first time out this winter so now I have an eye bolt in there to keep the blade from moving back and forth. At first I had the manual lift, but now I installed a winch which makes it 10000000x easier. I installed a Viper winch, which for $135 is doing the job nicely. I also had to replace the lift pulley as the plastic one they give you didn't last 1 lift, but now with the winch its not being used.

    The quad has plenty of power for me and in the summer I ride it pretty hard and it hasn't failed me. I do a lot of trail riding with some water crossings and the occasional mud hole, but nothing hardcore. The bike is all stock drivetrain wise and will stay that way. Sometimes I want a newer, bigger bike but don't feel the extra cost is worth it considering it sits in my garage a lot of the time.

    If your going to use the quad for trail riding also, than I wouldn't go with anything smaller than a 500. The Foreman is a great bike and moves through the trails with ease and can also push snow very well.

    Sorry for the long response, but thats my take on ATV's with plows. There are plenty of knowledgeable members on here who will help you out.
     
  3. mrplowpa

    mrplowpa Junior Member
    from pa
    Messages: 19

    good stuff - exactly the kind of info I don't know and definitely appreciate...

    if you don't mind me asking, what did that set-up run you new?

    I think I'm in the same boat as you -- I'm in PA so obviously lately we've gotten a lot of snow, but as you know sometimes we get none... and I'd be using it in the spring/summer, but not something like every weekend...
     
  4. BlueRam2500

    BlueRam2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 765

    I paid $6400 or so for my quad and plow setup brand new in late '07.
     
  5. bullseye

    bullseye Member
    Messages: 57

    Personally I run a 08 Honda 420ES (Rancher) AND I LOVE IT !!!! I am about 5'8" and 190 lbs and it's the perfect size for me. Awesome for running around in the woods and on trails as it is not a physically big machine AND it works really well for plowin !!! Easy to get around stuff and just enough power to push unbelievable amount of snow. I believe the hp rating between a Rancher and a Foreman is 1 hp difference and the Foreman is a bigger machine.(harder to go around things- both for plowin and trail-ridin) . But HONDA is what you want, they are a good reliable machines! You can't go wrong with any HONDA !!!!
    I run a Moose County plow and it works really good for plowin. Works really well for laneways and driveways as you can "throw" snow pretty good with a little speed.( you have to know your terrian).
    My Dad has my old machine, 03 Honda 350ES. Bullet-proof as well. He has the same plow as me and does just as good. And he has 1/2 worn-out tires too !!!!
     
  6. mrplowpa

    mrplowpa Junior Member
    from pa
    Messages: 19

    Thanks -

    I like Honda power equip, I'll probably check out a dealer this weekend. No rush, just trying to get an idea.

    Been checking out some threads regarding amounts of snow etc... I would like a setup that can handle multiple driveways, not sure mine --- I currently serve 8-10 driveways nearby with a snowblower and would like to upgrade to the atv w/ a helper cleaning up with the snowblower... besides a 500cc or bigger 4x4, are there any other mods that need to be done in order to plow? I would definitely go with a winch...and from what I've seen so far I like the moose country plow, looks like it can push some good snow. Are these plows all manual angling?

    How about ballast/weight on the plow blade or the atv itself? Chains also seem to be helpful...just trying to get everything in order so I can price out a full system...

    Thanks again, like I said I know the forum is full with a lot of this info piecemeal, but what fun is a forum if you don't post new topics anyhow...
     
  7. jheck74

    jheck74 Junior Member
    Messages: 12

    I run a 1996 Kawasaki Bayou 300 4x4 with a warn provantage 50" blade. I have a winch for up and down, and manual angle. I have about 200lbs on the rear rack, and 50lbs on the front. I also run 3psi of air in the tires. I can normally clear 10 driveways and 500 feet of side walk in 2 hrs. Of course they are all in the same sub division.
     
  8. SportsmanJay

    SportsmanJay Member
    Messages: 35

    I just bought a 2005 Polaris Sportsman 700 last year with a 60" Polaris plow on it to replace my old beat up plow truck. I figured it could serve double duty throughout the entire year instead of a truck that sits all summer and rots. I wasn't sure how well it would push snow, and let me tell you I'm amazed how much snow that thing will move! After the first couple of plows I noticed that it would greatly help to have wings on it, so I searched and searched and had no luck. I ended up making wings for it and in total the plow is now 70" with the wings installed. They help a great deal as I don't leave trails nearly like I did without them. Plus, on your final push of the driveway I can put the plow straight and scoop the last little bit and push it where I need it. After doing my driveway only for the past 7 years with a beat up truck, and now with the atv I have now taken on 2 driveways down the road from me for a little extra cash. One is a friend and the other his neighbor. It takes me about 40 mins from the time I walk out my door, warm up the wheeler, do my driveway, ride 1.5 miles down the road and do my 2 other drives, then about 1/4 mile past that to the gas station to top off (couple bucks each time) and come home. All I can say is I should have done this YEARS ago! I don't think you'll be sorry in whatever you get, and most likely you'll have fun plowing! Oh, I did add a hardened bag of concrete to the rear rack, and it helps alot backing up, it's not so front heavy anymore. If you want to check out the wings I made I started a thread on it here in the ATV section. Good luck and have fun!
     
  9. hghgrad

    hghgrad Member
    from MI
    Messages: 69

    I run a 350 Honda Foreman with a plow that I tossed together in my garage. It takes me about 35 minutes to run through 5 driveways in my neighborhood. I haven't added any weight or chains to the machine yet...but Michigan winters have been a little on the weak side the past few years.

    There are a few power angle set ups around. I built mine from a mustang convertible hydraulic pump and cylinders. Some use linear actuators. Quite a few people are happy with their warn units. Really depends on how much you want to spend.
     
  10. mrplowpa

    mrplowpa Junior Member
    from pa
    Messages: 19

    Great stuff - I don't know why I didn't think about this sooner...I totally agree with the atv serving double duty as opposed to a plow truck sitting all spring/summer... I'm going to browse for awhile to get an idea of prices...haven't decided whether I want to go new or not, but generally do you thi any 4x4 500cc or higher is sufficient? Or should I be looking for something else...

    Any of you guys ever get any crap for driving on roads during/after a snowstorm?
     
  11. SportsmanJay

    SportsmanJay Member
    Messages: 35

    I would think any 500cc or bigger would be fine. I test drove a couple 500's when I was looking and thought they weren't going to be fast enough for when when I use it for playing around. They felt plenty full of power, I just wanted something faster. I live in the country so it's not uncommon to see an atv or snowmobile running down the road, or through town to the gas station. I did call a friend of mine that's a sheriff and asked him the laws about riding on the road in my area (as he patrols my road/area) and he did tell me that technically you're not suppose to, but if anyone bothers me about it, have them call him. Do yourself a favor and make sure you use a winch or some sort of power lift, and always put a battery tender on it after plowing to keep the battery topped off.
     
  12. BlueRam2500

    BlueRam2500 Senior Member
    Messages: 765

    Call Rusty Palmer's in PA, they are by Lake Wallampaupack (sp). A lot of my friends bought quads from them and their prices are unbeatable.

    I have ridden mine on the road, and I have seen police, but I casually wave and continue on my way. I only ride on the road when I have the plow on the quad and make sure I have my helmet on as well as a bright vest if at night. You can't legally ride them on the road, and I have been told it is at the officer's discretion whether they want to bust you or not. Always be respectful and you will be fine.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2011
  13. rg1

    rg1 Junior Member
    Messages: 6

    Bought a Honda Foreman 500 this past fall. Bought a Warn winch, Warn Provantage tapered plow blade and center mount plow attachment. Completely satisfied with the ATV and the Warn accessories. I've been plowing about 8 driveways, a couple long ones. Most snow at one time has been about 4-6". Info I read before buying the plow was to get at least a 54" blade so that when angled it will still plow the full width of the atv. While I'm not fond of slick driveways and snowy roads, I'm having fun with my new toy. Search for info on using a nylon strap on your winch for raising and lowering your plow. Works great and saves the wire rope that comes on your winch. 500 cc is plenty big enough to plow snow at any depth. I haven't had any problems with traction with the stock tires ( in 4 wheel drive of course) and the driveways I'm plowing are all hilly and some quite steep. I don't see the need for chains but I haven't had any ice to contend with yet. Even though the atv plow will clean the surface pretty well, on the hilly driveways there is still the need to use salt or de-icer after plowing to completely clean the driveway surface. I bought a manual transmission just mainly because that's what I wanted. Less to go wrong? 1st gear on the Foreman is only walking speed at about 5-7 mph tops so it has plenty of power at slow speed. It's my 1st ATV so i can't comment on other models. Warn makes a blade angle changer but I don't find it's too much to hop off and swing the blade around manually. I installed the winch and wiring plus the plow mounts myself. Not too big of job if you've got the time, patience, ability, and tools. Buying a factory installed winch or dealer installed would be much easier and not too expensive but installing the plow mounts is very easy for anyone to do themselves. You have to assemble the plow mount, blade, etc. but the instructions are good and doesn't take long at all.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2011
  14. Dave T

    Dave T Senior Member
    from NE PA
    Messages: 165

    mrplowpa,

    You've gotten some great advise from the guys here. I will just be pretty much confirming what they've said...

    A 500cc ATV is a nice choice.
    You want an ATV with Low Range (or one with a good low gear).
    I would go with at least a 54" plow on a 500 class machine... 60" is even better IMHO.
    Get a "quality" winch with synthetic rope and the right fairlead.
    Brand choice is up to you... there are a lot of good ones in the 500 class.
     
  15. mrplowpa

    mrplowpa Junior Member
    from pa
    Messages: 19

    so you guys who regularly plow long sidewalks -- are you running w/ a 50"? does anything bigger fit when angled?
     
  16. jim331656

    jim331656 Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 44

    50" is about as big as you can go to fit on a standard sidewalk at full angle. I was between the foreman and the rancher... I went with the 420 honda rancher because I wanted to trail ride. I felt that the foreman was wider and bigger and the rancher was sportier. Plus the rancher was fuel injected which was big for me. The 420 has more then enough power to plow. Pretty much any atv does. Traction will stop you before lack of power does. We got over a foot of snow here in south jersey and my quad plowed great and then I dropped it and went and played.....
     
  17. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH PlowSite.com Addict
    from pa
    Messages: 1,132

    I knew this was going to come up when I read another post stating a 60in plow. If you plan on using the plow for sidewalks, you'll need a 48in plow. Using a plow on sidewalks can easily lead to damaged turf if you're off from center at all. If you can use a blower on the sidewalks, go with the 60in. The bigger blade makes quick work of a larger driveway.

    I have the 60in Warn blade. After a season of gathering customers for snow removal I decided to go with a 60in. All but one customer has a public sidewalk that I just use the blower on. It's a 30in cut so one pass and back and it's done. All the rest are like the one in the pic. No sidewalks other then a small area at the front door and in front of the garage doors. I just shove it out into the snow enough to back the 4wheeler up to the doors and start pushing. :)

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  18. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH PlowSite.com Addict
    from pa
    Messages: 1,132

    Anyone care to take a guess at what I get paid on a 4in snow at this place with salt?
     
  19. jim331656

    jim331656 Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 44

    and yeah I have a 50" blade and I have ripped my grass up a bit. Of course my edging sucks, if it was better i don't think i would have as much trouble. What I end up doing is hold the plow an inch or 2 off the walk make a pass then shovel it clean.
     
  20. SportsmanJay

    SportsmanJay Member
    Messages: 35


    I'll take a stab... $75