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Sand for Ballast!

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by River Hill, Nov 6, 2002.

  1. River Hill

    River Hill Senior Member
    Messages: 102

    I went to the local Home Depot today to buy a few bags of sand for ballast, as I am having my plow installed Friday. For those of you who are using sand as Ballast,are you buying the 50LB bags of sand in plastic or the 80LB bags in heavy duty paper. The 50LB bags are play sand and the larger bags are a more course sand. The problem we have here in MD, is alot of the time we have rain mixed in with the snow. How do the bags of sand in heavy paper hold up? Any other suggestions that might be better than sand for ballast would be helpful.
  2. DaveO

    DaveO PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Ma.
    Messages: 299

    Tubeasand from Home Depot. Comes in 60lbs reinforced bags for less than the play sand(~2.50).

  3. River Hill

    River Hill Senior Member
    Messages: 102

    I just found the tube of sand. Home Depot does not have it in our area yet, as they say it's sesonal. Lowes does have it at $3.42 a bag. Playsand is cheaper but it looks like the tube of sand is easier to handle and in a more sturdy bag.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2002
  4. chtucker

    chtucker Senior Member
    Messages: 618

    No matter what I have ever used the bag always breaks. UV rays break down whatever packaging the sand is in. I surely wouldn't buy anything paper. If you keep the sand in the bed all winter, plan on it dumping sand some where from UV degradation. If you put it in and out, plan on ripping a bag on some sharp corner. Its cheap stuff. Just keep a broom handy. 2-5 dollars x 10 is minimal amount of money to be worried about. My ballast is two boxes one which contains tire chains, tow straps, blankets, shovel, flares, shackles, spare parts. In another box filled with sand, (one of the rubbermade jobbies). I can hop out and through down some sand to give me traction or to cover a steep parkling lot exit.
  5. Highpoint

    Highpoint Senior Member
    Messages: 241

    We spread a lot of sand from bags. We buy from lowes, Home Depot, etc. Had to always use the paper bagged stuff. hated it cause the bags got wet, broke. Last year the stores started carrying plastic bags. We were happy:) Bought 2 pallets, loaded in trucks. Did not cover since plastic is supposed to be water proof right.? Bags sweat, got wet, froze solid! Ended up dumping almost half. Plastic bags are not sealed. They all have a built in spout for moisture to get in. Bummer! Went back to the paper bags and covering with tarp. Tube sand would be the way to go if you are just looking for weight. Good luck.
  6. sonjaab

    sonjaab PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    BRIAN.......I use the tube sand...I have a tonneau
    cover on my rig. SO prying eyes can't see my
    shovels, chains, etc....Also the tube sand stays
    dry ! I have a 2 x10 "H" over my wheel wells
    so everthing stays in place. I have cinch straps
    over the sand so it won't become a missile if
    I have to jamb on the brakes !...geo
  7. Ben

    Ben Member
    Messages: 62

    I keep mine in big rubbermaid totes with lids, bought at lowes about $6 each. they keep every thing nice and dry.
  8. long0

    long0 Senior Member
    Messages: 247

    I went down to the local lumber yard after a rain storm. They always have at least a couple of bags of concrete that get wet. Let them sit for a couple of days and you have hardened - baged concrete.

    Not only are they heavy, but they are also FREE. :drinkup:

  9. BWhite

    BWhite Senior Member
    Messages: 496

    train wheel

    Go to your local amtrak yard and ask for a junk train wheel it weighs about 500 lb. Keep some sand or traction etc
  10. firefighter

    firefighter Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 44

    When I used sand, I went to the local feed store and purchased there feed sacks that are woven plastic. I filled sacks and used tie straps to tie off sacks.
  11. Roger Dodger

    Roger Dodger Senior Member
    from nw Pa.
    Messages: 240

    Keep in mind that loose weight used for traction can cause your insurance co. to not honor an accident claim. They believe loose weight can cause a vehicle to become unstable, or increase the damages during an accident. While this is not etched in stone by all companies, some have this policy in force, written in fine print, cleverly tucked away on page 689 of your policy!
  12. duke

    duke Junior Member
    Messages: 28

    use the 5 gallon buckets with covers. they are easy to put in and take out (with the handle) as well as they are water proof
  13. Eager Beaver

    Eager Beaver Senior Member
    Messages: 104

    80 lb salt bags work great also that come in plastic bags and they hold up pretty well. That way you have got some in the truck for other applications. Put a board or something in front of the bags to keep them from shifting forward. Some trucks have slots for this purpose built right in the beds of the trucks