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Understanding how to plow! Down, float, trip and shoes?

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by Abouna, Jan 1, 2014.

  1. Abouna

    Abouna Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 36

    OK, well we're now several snows into this new plow (Snowdogg MD75) and so far so good....pretty much.

    I realized I only partially know what I'm doing so I'd like some guidance.

    Down speed: Ours was painfully slow from the installer. I adjusted to drop much faster. I thought I needed to get to the ground before it went into Float. See next question.

    Float: I assumed this was just for parking the rig. Kind of looks like I should be running in Float all the time? Not sure I understand.

    Shoes: In float or not, we've not been getting a very clean lot. At least 1/4" left over even on flat sections. We pulled some of the spacers off the shoes and it's now scraping much cleaner. I think though that we pulled so much off that the shoes are doing nothing. Problem? What are they for?

    Trip: Any explanation would be helpful. Not only don't I know what it is but not sure we have it or what kind?

    Sorry for all the dumb questions.

    Cheers!
     
  2. kimber750

    kimber750 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,652


    ...................
     
  3. xgiovannix12

    xgiovannix12 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,419

    what kimber said... Trip also protects the driver and truck from getting hurt.
     
  4. Abouna

    Abouna Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 36

    Thanks for the prompt replies!

    Helps a lot. Shoes are comin' off!
     
  5. SnowGuy73

    SnowGuy73 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 24,868

    You might want to also try reading yours owners manual.....
     
  6. Abouna

    Abouna Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 36

    I did! I suppose I may have missed something but it simply wasn't that helpful.

    Why do people on forums always assume those asking questions are lazy?
     
  7. basher

    basher PlowSite Fanatic
    from 19707
    Messages: 8,992

    Because a lot of them are.

    Youtube has 100s if not 1000s of videos on how to plow snow, SIMA and ASCA offer training tapes, a couple mintues with the search feature here at Plowsite would have turned up posts that answer those questions.

    Most plow manufacturers (yes I know you have a Snowdawg) owners manual contains all that information. Take a minute and look at Meyer, Boss, any of the DD products, Snoway, any of the owners manuals (beside the Dawg's) and they have the answers and more.

    How did you decide on the plow you bought?

    Did you research plow features and reputation, check out dealers in your area for the one with a good parts inventory, customer support and extended hours service during snow storms or did you price shop?

    I'm surprised the dealer didn't go over the unit with you and explain how to operate it, the features and their functions.
     
  8. Abouna

    Abouna Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 36

    Well, I agree. A lot of them are.

    That said, I did read the manual, which as you say did have somme info, but I personally found it lacking. I also read through quite a few posts, and did get my answers for the most part. Being new to plowing though I just wanted to be sure. Afterall, isn't it a given that regardless of intent, forums are to a greater part just a constant rehashing of much the same info?

    As for plow research, I did some. In fact I came here first, and the Snowdogg was recommended to us more than a few times. Dealers in out area aren't terribly good. The Snowdogg dealer was by far the most competent. The kid they had show us how to use the plow though was a bit green, as I knew better how to attach and remove the plow than he did (having already watched the videos). They were very busy though and I just let it go as everyone was getting geared up for a big snow within hours.
     
  9. jasonv

    jasonv PlowSite.com Addict
    from kannada
    Messages: 1,114

    Nope, down and float are usually the same switch. Maybe not on some fancier electronic switch boxes.

    "float" is actually "sustained down" or "down up". It allows the hydraulic lift cylinder to drop or lift with the plow rather than having to be driven by the pump. When its not in float, the cylinder is locked in position, so it can't go up or down.

    Basically, on a flat surface, back wheels, front wheels, and plow blade are all in line with each other. If you drive over the top of a hill, they need to go out of line with each other -- the plow needs to go DOWN relative to the line from wheel to wheel, in order to remain in contact with the road. This is what float does. It allows the plow to follow the contours of the ground.

    Mostly for softer surfaces like gravel, they are there to prevent the plow from digging in too deeply. On a solid surface, they may marginally reduce wear to the edge, but at a cost of increasing their own wear.