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My First Season With ATV

Discussion in 'ATV / UTV Snow Removal' started by ks_grasscutter, Feb 25, 2011.

  1. ks_grasscutter

    ks_grasscutter Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    This was my first season with my ATV. I have previously used a Toro single stage snow blower to do about 20 driveways. This year I have about the same drives, plus a small fast food parking lot. Last fall I bought a Kawasaki Brute Force 650 with a 54" Warn plow. While it seems better then using the snow blower, I have experienced a couple issues.

    First, the winch cable. I was breaking my winch cable about twice per storm. I think this was mostly operator error, as each time it broke, it was hung up on a curb or parking block. To solve this I bought a tow strap and cut it in half, and replaced 1 hook with a clevis. I ran this setup for 1 storm (2 pushes, big snow for this area), and had great luck, though my strap is getting frayed.

    I went through my first cutting edge fast (at least I thought so anyway). I had done the parking lot twice, and the driveway route twice. Luckily my dealer didn't have a cutting edge in stock, so I went to the local metal place and bought a 20' piece of strap and made 4 cutting edges for the cost of 1. Not near as much of a problem anymore lol.

    The issue that remains persistent, though, is breaking bolts. I am breaking plow mount bolts all the time. I'm breaking bumper mount bolts all the time. I honestly don't think I am being overly hard on it, but maybe I am? It just gets to be a pain replacing bolts all the time. The first time was the worst, having to drill out everything that was threaded into the frame. Basically, is anyone else having problems breaking bolts all the time? This is with the front mounted blade, maybe the other style mounting set up that mid-way back under the frame, would be more durable?

    When it's -5 I sometimes wish I would have bought a plow for my truck, but I feel the ATV is just about the best way to do driveways. Around here we get 3 to 5 plowable storms a year, so it's not like im out there every week.
  2. ks_grasscutter

    ks_grasscutter Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    Here are a couple pictures of the ATV and the rig. Mostly work solo, but occasionally the neighbor kid goes out with me to shovle steps and blow sidewalks.

    Snow Feb 11 002.jpg

    Snow Feb 11 007.jpg
  3. glngib

    glngib Junior Member
    Messages: 23

    You might try the hardened bolts instead of the standard ones. Or take it easy. :) My first year as well and only did mine plus a couple of others. My wear bar was wearing fast too. I bought and installed a 1" x 6" by 52" hard rubber wear bar. Used it once on a light snow. It won't dig in like a metal one will.

    IPLOWSNO PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,619

    i have the bellymount and i know i have some ubolts broke, i would have to lay down and fix them, and i feel my garage floor is a tad cold so i plow on, so far so good lmao

    the only bolts i break are the ones for the vee, so i bought a stockpile of them and just throw new ones in, something has to be a weak link imo,

    yea you could of got a plow but , you can't play on a plow if ya want too in the summer ? and the wheeler is a good equal doingsmall driveways imo, you just need a cab and slow down a little,

    maybe you need to get rid of the big job you have and get smaller ones where your wheeler would be better, theres a niche for your wheeler and you need to find it.
  5. Dave T

    Dave T Senior Member
    from NE PA
    Messages: 165

    Yep, I would also change the bolts and nuts out to hardened nuts and bolts. However, you have to use a little common sense when doing so. Some bolts need to break rather than having something more substantial on the plow from breaking.
  6. ks_grasscutter

    ks_grasscutter Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    This last time I replaced about half of them with grade 8. I guess though it's better for the bolts to break than to bend the frame or something lol. And yes, I think i just simply need to slow down and be more careful. While it is cool to watch the snow roll off the plow at 15 mph, it's not as cool when you hit a crack and the whole machine comes to a stop instantly.
  7. Dave T

    Dave T Senior Member
    from NE PA
    Messages: 165

    Yep, that will do it! :D
  8. My07Brute

    My07Brute Senior Member
    Messages: 100

    hmmm....second season on my plow and I do mine and my neighbors drive and no breaking bolts.

    I have lost a bolts and a skid but not broken anything (other than syn. cable - Tusk tow strap fixed that).

    BUT I don't beat the plow or machine, I don't ram piles and I let the machine push until the tire spin.

    If I know there are rocks (or a curb in your case) I go real slow in that area so I don't hit it with any speed.