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Plowing with Dodge Dakota?!? (or other smaller truck)

Discussion in 'Ram Trucks' started by beverlylawncare, Nov 9, 2008.

  1. beverlylawncare

    beverlylawncare Member
    Messages: 78

    I'm selling my F250 (and the rest of my lawn business if it all goes well!). My church and my parents church have approached me on still handling their snow removal.

    I'm still going to keep a handful of yards to mow, so I'll still need a truck. I have two kids, so I'm going to want a 4 door truck.

    After looking at Meyer and Western websites, I see that they have an application for a Dakota plow, and its actually "midweight plows".

    Anyone have, or know of people who use Dakotas? We are talking two small lots, but would be there for my use on driveways (mine's not bad, but my parents is 3 cars wide and approx. 200-225' long). That way, should we get our "big one" in Louisville, KY anytime soon, I won't be left out without any way to make a few bucks and save my back from shoveling.

    I realize the salt capacity should I keep my hitch spreader won't be nearly what my 250 can do, but I could easily throw 15-20 bags of salt in there I'm sure.

    Any thoughts?

    I'm looking at 03-05 Dakotas with the V8.

    Thanks!
     
  2. RamPainting LLC

    RamPainting LLC Senior Member
    Messages: 194

    I've got a 3.9 6 cylinder Dakota, I've been thinking about a mid weight Western for mine? I'm sure it would do well, they make good power and torque in 4 wheel low. Might have to beef up the front suspension tho? my 02 is pretty soft. I think the western and fisher setups are 650 lbs.
     
  3. inknthread

    inknthread Junior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 9

    I had a 97 Dakota Magnum with the 318. I put a 7' older fisher with western controls on it. Truck never gave me a bit of trouble plowing. I did several commercial lots including a large church lot. The only drawback was the weight of the plow. It wasnt heavy enough. A few times at the end of a run as the snow woul pile the plow rode up and snow got behind the plow. There I sat with a shovelk digging out. Gas mileage sucks on it also I got 10 on the highway without the plow on. Other than that great for plowing.
     
  4. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    I've used a couple a 99 ext cab 5.2 with a Meyer 6.5 with wings and the current 92 ext cab 5.2 with a Western 7'2". Both are good but I'm having overheating issues with the 92 though I'm fairly sure it's just the fan clutch. Mileage on both of them will hit 18MPG on the highway, actually hit 20 on the 92 not too long ago, but both will drop close to 10-12 plowing.

    You're biggest problem with be front axle weight with the quad cab. If it were me I'd be looking at the 26 series Snoway, I'm sure with a little talking you could walk away with a 7.5 in stainless and save a few lbs.
     
  5. 2500hdFisher

    2500hdFisher Member
    Messages: 61

    I have good luck with my blizzard 720lt barely squats my 03 dodge dakota quad cab and i have the v8 its so easy to hook up and feels like its not even there when youre carrying it.
     
  6. CarCrazed4Life

    CarCrazed4Life Senior Member
    Messages: 171

    I have an 04 Dakota Quad Cab 4x4 4.7 V8... I use a Sno-Way MT90 on it. Its a Medium Sized Plow for Medium Trucks. But with Timbrens Fron & Rear, cranking the torsion bars up, and using Load E rated Goodyear Silent Armors... I have no issues plowing. If you get lucky and find a 5.9 Quad Cab, jump on it. 2003s are the most preferable as they have Discs front and rear. You want the Tow Package because it has the oil cooler. I use a small Salter out back which allows enough weight when full to get plowing done in 2WD for the most part.

    If you are not a Sno-way fan, than go Blizzard. But I guarantee if you drove my truck, you would feel like you have a Mid Size truck when plowing with a 90" Blade. The Dakota really is a hybrid between mid size and compact trucks.
     
  7. RamPainting LLC

    RamPainting LLC Senior Member
    Messages: 194

    How about some Dakota pics guy's!!
     
  8. CarCrazed4Life

    CarCrazed4Life Senior Member
    Messages: 171

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Those are mine... 3rd Year with that truck, and its been pretty good to me. Wish I had the 5.9 though :)
     
  9. RamPainting LLC

    RamPainting LLC Senior Member
    Messages: 194

    The plow lights look really high, do they block any of your vision driving?

    Nice rig :drinkup:
     
  10. CarCrazed4Life

    CarCrazed4Life Senior Member
    Messages: 171

    I wanted the full range on the Plow in height, so I had to keep the lights above the plow in order for it to stay legal. Because its somewhat a large plow for that sized truck, I need it as high up as possible in order to get air flow so it doesn't overheat...

    Overall I've figured out the best combo with a lil trial and error :)

    But Thanks for the compliments!!!
     
  11. THEGOLDPRO

    THEGOLDPRO PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,136

    We had a 2003 dodge dakota with a 4.7 v8, Had a blizzard 720lt plow on it. the truck had all the power in the world but was too small and blew the tranny first good storm. I dunno im mixed on small trucks, I would rather get a jeep wrangler and put a plow on it
     
  12. CarCrazed4Life

    CarCrazed4Life Senior Member
    Messages: 171

    Did it have the tow package? That Trans Cooler is kind of important IMO. That and the larger load carrying 265/70/16 Tires is what gave the Dakota is ability to have a higher GVWR with that tow package... I've merely swapped 265/70/16s with 245/75/16s Load E for my use.

    Only other vehicle this small I would consider is maybe the newer Jeep Wrangler Rubicon or maybe even the Hummer H3t Alpha. I prefer smaller trucks sized like the Dakota/Tacoma/Hummer H3t as I don't need a full size truck when these trucks do all I need it to do from a towing/plowing/hauling perspective.
     
  13. RamPainting LLC

    RamPainting LLC Senior Member
    Messages: 194

    Intersting!

    My Dakota has the 3.9 6 cylinder with a 5 speed, I used this truck to tow a 8x20' enclosed car hauler across the country :D I would not do it again, but it held together! It also has the original clutch with 109,000 miles which more than half are towing miles (6x12) I could not be more happy with this truck! All I've done is fill it with gas and change the oil.

    I started plowing with a 87 Wrangler, awesome truck for tight jobs! Like having a 3/4 ton truck with solid axle in the front.
     
  14. beverlylawncare

    beverlylawncare Member
    Messages: 78

    carcrazed, cool lights up top. Magnetic? Adjustable? I've never seen a setup like that before.

    I am looking at a 2000 with the 3.9, and an 03 with the 4.7. Any thoughts?
     
  15. CarCrazed4Life

    CarCrazed4Life Senior Member
    Messages: 171

    I use to have an 03 5.9 Quad Cab. If I could do it over again, I'd look for an older 5.9. I like the 4.7, and better on gas for daily driving when not towing or plowing, but the low end torque of the 5.9 was amazing.

    If you can't find a 5.9 4x4 (usually CC or QC) then go with the 4.7 over the 5.2. Just make sure it has the tow package.

    My light bar was a cheap ebay find that you had the mold the plastic to fit... But it does the trick. I have it wired to the fogs, so no more cab fool of control boxes and swithes. Only adjustability is up and down on the roof lights. You'll be happy with the Dakota.
     
  16. CarCrazed4Life

    CarCrazed4Life Senior Member
    Messages: 171

  17. joeduno

    joeduno Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    I'm using a 93 Dakota with the V8, and about 500lbs of sand in the bed. I plow on three lots two smaller lots and one that is huge, about the size of a walmart parking lot, and the truck does pretty good. Although we haven't gotten a good storm yet only a few inches at at time. As you can see from my pics, I love to over work my dakota. So far, she'll push or pull just about anything I can throw at her, and she just keeps going. Good trucks in my opnion.

    Image023.jpg

    Image024.jpg

    Image030.jpg

    Image020.jpg
     
  18. CarCrazed4Life

    CarCrazed4Life Senior Member
    Messages: 171

    IMO any truck, even a 3/4 is going to feel the weight of the snow when you try and do more then 4". The idea on plowing is technique no matter what you use.

    Nice truck... Do you plow while you tow :)
     
  19. joeduno

    joeduno Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    I always tow while plowing, thats my ride home incase the truck breaks down ;)