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New guy, looking to start low cost.. how about these gimmick shovels?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by roberthathaway7, Jan 3, 2013.

  1. roberthathaway7

    roberthathaway7 Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    I have a lawn and landscape business in Southern Illinois, so of course a little snow plowing will fit right into my business model. Only thing is, being only three years into the lawn business, I got smoked by this year's drought/heat and it zapped all my venture funds. We just had a 14 inch snow with a 6 inch chaser 2 days later, which is unheard of for this area, and my phone was ringing off the hook about snow removal but all I could take was a few driveways and sidewalks that I could clear with a plain old snow shovel. Obviously my back and arms were destroyed. All I want to get into this winter is small residential and small commercial. I have the energy and time to do manual labor, and seeing that I am broke like a joke but need to capitalize when I can..

    What sort of snow removal systems are there out there for less than $200 that would up my production and lessen my physical anguish?? I've been youtubing around and I've seen some pretty cool things but who knows if they work in real life. These are a couple that I looked at..

    *The ManPlow: a huge aluminum snow pusher for heavy stuff that seems to work pretty well as well as having a replacable edge

    *The Snow Bully: Looks like something I could make, more or less a 4 wheel pushable cart with a plow on the front

    *The Wovel: You have got to look at this thing! Looks kind of awesome, might just suck though, haha. I do like the physics of it... very ergonomic and great for home owners, just don't know about commercial use/moving snow quickly.

    *The Snow Caster: A push plow on wheels. Looks like pretty much what I need, just really light duty.

    My buddy works at a machine shop where he can make whatever he wants to after hours, and I'm thinking about buying some aluminum and making my own ManPlow and buying the screw-on replacement blades from the company, and make my own Snow Caster just a little more heavy duty with the blade of the ManPlow. What do you guys think?

    Also I'm going to try my hardest to rent a stand on skid steer when I hear the first hints of huge snow, that might be a life saver
     
  2. ScubaSteve728

    ScubaSteve728 Senior Member
    Messages: 477

    a used snow blower will be best for you
    all of those things may work but mostly gimmicks for homeowners
     
  3. nnusskern

    nnusskern Member
    Messages: 42

    What he said and you will go so much faster and not feel completly exhausted afterwards fron shoveling all day. You could buy a nice snowblower to start out for less than $700.
     
  4. willshome

    willshome Junior Member
    from mass
    Messages: 29

    I would look at craigslist I got a snow blower $80 and one for $100
     
  5. roberthathaway7

    roberthathaway7 Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Yeah I was thinking about snow blowers, but then I don't know how bad they throw rocks? Seems like it would be a pain around cars and office windows if they did.
     
  6. 2006Sierra1500

    2006Sierra1500 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,758

    They don't really throw anything but snow. If there are rocks like on top of the snow they will get thrown.
     
  7. theholycow

    theholycow PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,180

    Around here it's currently easy to find usable old-school 5-8hp 2 stage snowblowers for $100 on craigslist in need of little or no work. Not sure how you'd do in your area. They do throw whatever they intake but they have skids that you can adjust so they don't scrape all the way down. Even so I'd still be very careful using it around a bunch of cars and glass!

    As well, I scored a Snowbear snowplow complete with mounts for my truck for $150. I wouldn't do heavy duty commercial plowing with it but used carefully, respecting its limits, it could certainly be used to do most of the work you're doing with your back. There is a guy who has had plenty of success plowing commercially with one:
    http://www.plowsite.com/showthread.php?t=130558
    http://www.plowsite.com/showthread.php?t=131791
    I imagine that competing light-duty homeowner snowplows could do similarly. Again, no idea how the market is in your area. It took me a year of scouring craigslist to score mine within my budget.

    Folks on this web site are mostly happy with the "TheSnowPlow" shovel.
    http://www.plowsite.com/forumdisplay.php?f=90

    Personally I'm as happy as I think I can be with a shovel with certain Bigfoot models by EMSCO Group:
    http://www.plowsite.com/showpost.php?p=1358648&postcount=18
    I hate shoveling but these let me roll/windrow like a plow, dig like a traditional snow shovel, are lightweight but strong, slide nicely without catching on cracks and punching me in the gut (thanks to complete plastic construction without a metal wear bar), and are inexpensive. Shoveling what sounds like a similar load (my own large, rough driveway and yard) I get over one heavy season out of a shovel.
     
  8. roberthathaway7

    roberthathaway7 Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Holy cow, thanks Theholycow. And everyone else. That snowplow shovel is probably what I was looking for. I'll probably grab a 36 incher and see how it goes. thanks again!