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New to plowing

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by recon701, Sep 17, 2011.

  1. recon701

    recon701 Junior Member
    from CNY
    Messages: 6

    I have been lurking on this site for a while. I found it from using Lawnsite. I need to stop finding these sites because it always ends with me spending thousands of dollars! It helps me from buying cheap stuff, that won't last more than a few seasons though. I have been extremely pleased with my ZTR mower so far.

    I have never plowed before, but after our last terrible winter, of 160+", I decided that my John Deere 27" blower wasn't going to cut it for my drive anymore. The drive way is probably about 100' long with a parking area that is probably about 50' by 50'. I have a low mileage 2004 F150 4x4 in good shape and I decided to try to find a plow for it. There aren't a ton of them out there for it, but I figured if an S10, Ranger, or Jeep could handle it then it could. I found a good used Snoway 29 that was already setup for my model F150. I would have preferred a Snoway 26, but this is just for my driveway so the larger plow shouldn't do that much wear and tear. I only put like 4,000 miles a year on my truck.

    The truck is at the Snoway dealer now having the plow installed. I am wondering if I would need to get snow tires for the vehicle? It has good all season tires with a lot of tread on them. Do most people plowing go with the snow tires? Also, how much ballast do you think I would need to put on the back of it? The dealer is also installing timbrens on it. I will post up some pictures of the truck/plow when I get it back next week, and also some pictures of the driveway. Any other tips or advice for a first time plower? This should only be for my driveway and maybe an occasional neighbor.
     
  2. rick502

    rick502 Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 54

    Snow tires are a must for a plow truck, big difference between all seasons and a proper snow tire. Lot of posts on this site about good snow tires.Look for a tire w/ severe snow rating (symbol with triangle and snowflake). As far as ballast, I'd start w/ 350 lbs and adjust from there, each setup is different. Be sure to secure ballast so it doesn't shift on you. .
     
  3. Dubl0Vert

    Dubl0Vert Senior Member
    Messages: 178

    If you are new to plowing I would recommend staking your drive. Buy a couple of the orange fiberglass whips at Lowe's or Home Depot and mark the edges and corner of the drive and parking area. Things look differently from inside the truck when plowing than they did outside with the blower. You will likely move a little faster too and it helps with knowing exactly where to start stacking the snow.

    Best of luck!
     
  4. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,992


    Advice; don't do your neighbor unless it is on a for money with a contract basis. Even then it can be a no win situation.
     
  5. Spucel

    Spucel Senior Member
    Messages: 413

    Congrats on the new setup and cant wait to see pictures. Try to keep up with it instead of doing all the snow at the end and beating the truck up!
     
  6. rick502

    rick502 Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 54

    Great advice by Basher on neighbors driveways - always ends up being a problem. You do it once and a while just to help them out and they begin to expect it. You do it for $$ and now you are in a business relationship. Take on 1 and the other neighbors want you too. Of course if they ask and you don't take them on that pisses them off too. Can't win. I tell them my full time job makes for unpredictable plowing schedule (true) and refer them to a couple local contractors friends who have good reputation.
     
  7. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,992

    At, of course, a neighborly price that includes premium service.:salute:
     
  8. rick502

    rick502 Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 54

    Yea, it's a slippery slope. I only do 1 driveway for somone i know now - my in law's. But of course I have no choice there do I?
     
  9. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,992

    :laughing::laughing::laughing: Yes you do, I PAY someone to do mine. "It's to far out of my route," "My trucks to big."

    Funny i have never heard a complaint about the guy who does it, but then I pay the bill:laughing:
     
  10. recon701

    recon701 Junior Member
    from CNY
    Messages: 6

    Good advice

    The plow is a poly. I was looking for a 26, but this 29 was already setup for my model F150 so it made it hard to pass up. I was able to pick it up with mount and wireless remote for $1400. I work with my local Snoway dealer often for their auto repair business, so I asked their advice and they said it should work fine. I probably won't be driving it more than a few miles around my house with the plow on it. I'm not sure of which axle is on it, I'll have to check when I get it back.

    I am definitely going to stake it, hopefully the snow isn't as high as last year or I'm going to need like eight foot stakes sticking out of the ground.

    I'll probably get 400 pounds of salts and build a spot to keep it in the back. I usually keep the bed full of whatever snow falls in it also.

    I have Blizzaks on my car for the winter. I can definitely tell a huge difference in my car between brand new all seasons and the snow tires. The snow tires get so much more grip and feel much more secure. I'll have to check out what the tires are on the truck now. I'm going to look around for a spare set of wheels.

    I don't really even talk to my neighbors much. I bought my house two years ago, and I think I'm the only one around here less than 50 (28). I probably won't help them much, unless I was feeling extremely neighborly. My busy season for work is in the winter also, that's why I got the plow so I don't waste more of my off time at home snow blowing and shoveling.
     
  11. rick502

    rick502 Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 54

    400lbs should be plenty, and Blizzaks are great tires.
     
  12. swtiih

    swtiih PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,179

    You might be better to use bagged sand or have the salt in a good container that won't break open.
    If you plan on keeping the bagged salt in the bed all season one may open. Salt doesn't take long before it starts to eat things up.If your only doing your drive and its level then those tires will probably be fine. When they need replacing go with the all terrain style
     
  13. Spucel

    Spucel Senior Member
    Messages: 413


    Yea thats a tough one to get out of....luckily my father in law gets all excited to use his snow blower that he spent almost as much as I spent on my plow :eek:
    Smart man my friend. The wheelbase is a good one cause women usually have no clue what you are talking about
     
  14. rick502

    rick502 Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 54

    This is good advice, this forum addrsesses all the issues.... Actually get along great with in-laws. Biggest problem is mother in law expects me to come in for coffee and a snack everytime I plow. Not terrible I know but takes time.
     
  15. Dubl0Vert

    Dubl0Vert Senior Member
    Messages: 178

    :laughing: I hate that part!!! I am "happy" to go out of my way to clear their drive.....but I don't have time to sit around and chat while the snow is falling....

    Gotta keep on truckin' wesport
     
  16. rick502

    rick502 Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 54

    Glad I'm not the only one. I'm getting smarter tho - sometimes I bring my wife or daughter - I drop them off to do the visiting while I plow. Works like a charm Thumbs Up
     
  17. leolkfrm

    leolkfrm PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,434

    put the ballast between the fender wells and the tailgate, and anchor it well, i run 2x4's across the bed and use tractor weights, then a piece of plywood on top to keep the bed usable
     
  18. recon701

    recon701 Junior Member
    from CNY
    Messages: 6

    I got the plow put on and picked it up today. Everything on there is working well, and I definitely like the quick connect/disconnect feature. The truck felt a little warm after the 10 mile ride home, but the temperature gauge on the inside never got above half. It's probably about 75 degrees here right now.

    I checked my front axle and it's rated for 3750 pounds. They added the timbrens and it doesn't seem to sag much even when fully raised. I probably won't drive very far ever with the plow attached. I brought it home, messed around with raising and lowering it for a few minutes and then disconnected it. I forgot to take pictures until I had fully disconnected it and didn't feel like hooking it back up again. Here are some pictures of my truck, plow, and driveway.

    [​IMG]
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  19. swtiih

    swtiih PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,179

    nice looking setup for your driveway.spray all the metal parts including the moldboard with a can of fluid film it will slow the rusting