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Urethane Blades for Highway Plows

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment' started by Grader4me, Oct 17, 2006.

  1. Grader4me

    Grader4me Member
    Messages: 44

    Hi Guys,
    Just a quick question...Have any of you guys tryed or know of anyone that uses or tryed urethane blades on the highway plows? We are experimenting with the rubber blades and are quite pleased with the results, but I am curious about the urethane, as I know nothing about them.

    Pete
     
  2. VAhighwayman

    VAhighwayman Senior Member
    Messages: 155

    Hi Pete..
    I don't know about on the highways..we've still used steel and carbide blades..but I know some of the airports use them and they are pleased with them..

    Garry
     
  3. Grader4me

    Grader4me Member
    Messages: 44

    Hi Garry,
    I heard that some airports use them. We also use the steel and carbide blades. Last couple of winters we have been trying out the rubber blades. We mount the rubber blade between two steel blades with 1 inch hanging below the front blade.
    When you begin plowing the inch of rubber catches the pavement bends back, front steel blade also touches the road. The pressure of the bent back rubber cleans the road really well so that you end up using less salt to bare it. We call it the "ice cream sandwich"
    These also last a long time eliminating the need to change blades so often, so in effect saves $$ on blade/labour costs.
    So I guess my point is sometimes trying other methods pay off, this is why I am looking for feedback on the urethane.
     
  4. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    i saw a MDOT truck with a belly blade on at the local international dealer. on closer inspection it had a urethane edge on it. was a little suprised.
     
  5. Gregg Blair

    Gregg Blair member
    Messages: 31

    When asked this question, we typically tell the highway plow guys that the urethane won't hold up. Highway guys plow at higher speeds and the heat that's built up causes the urethane to wear quicker. However, we've had customers run urethane alone and been successful. I can tell you that if you're having success with rubber, the urethane will probably be an upgrade.

    What we've also found in some cases is that when the urethane is put between steel or carbide, the life of the steel or carbide is extended. The only downfall here is that your not getting the complete benefit of the urethane edge.
     
  6. Grader4me

    Grader4me Member
    Messages: 44

    Thanks for the info Gregg. Yes surprising enough we are having success with the rubber, but we are finding that the hardest rubber works and lasts the best. We had one shipment come in that had a softer consistancy and it wore down fairly quick.

    Our operators like the fact that it cleans good, less blade changes, very quiet, and they feel safer as due to the thickness, they are not as apt to go under in soft conditions.

    How would the urethane work on chipseal or gravel roads where speed is reduced when plowing? As a rule we try not to use the carbide tip blades on these types of roads as they have a tendency to peel the surface.

    How thick are these blades? Excuse the ignorance, but I have never layed eyes on one. Thanks in advance for any futher info!
     
  7. Gregg Blair

    Gregg Blair member
    Messages: 31

    Urethane edges can be made to fit any plow. Thickness wise, I usually recommend 1" - 1 1/2" for contractor type plows, but for larger highway plows I'd recommend atleast 2".

    The widest use of these edges originated in airports. Airports were using rubber to eliminate runway damage and damage to inlayed runway lights. Urethane was an upgrade that improved performance and wearlife.

    On gravel and chipped surfaces, urethane performs well. It won't damage the chipped surface, and it will typically ride over top of gravel. Obviously any results can be dependent on equipment, weather conditions and drivers.
     
  8. Grader4me

    Grader4me Member
    Messages: 44

    Can't ask for any better than that! Thanks alot for the information Gregg. We are going to have to give these a try.
    Thanks as well 04superduty and VAhighwayman for your responses. Vahighwayman I was reading your profile and I am sorry to hear of your injury. Take care,

    Pete
     
  9. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,853

    We have what would be considered a highway plow but we don't use it on highways. It is a 10' Monroe full trip. We have had a 2" urethane edge on it for several years now, can't remember exactly how many, and it has showed virtually no wear at all. Unfortunately it was before I was well acquainted with Gregg and Superior so it came from another manufacturer. But having used a few different edges from Superior, I would not hesitate at all to recommend a Polar Edge. As my other brand edges wear out, we are switching to Polar Edges.

    From my other experiences on various plows with polyurethane edges, I would say give it a shot, it can't hurt.
     
  10. Grader4me

    Grader4me Member
    Messages: 44

    Hi there Mark...Thanks for your input!
     
  11. VAhighwayman

    VAhighwayman Senior Member
    Messages: 155

    Thanks Pete..
    This time of year it's killing me that I can't play in the snow..so i'm restricted to just watching the stuff come down.
     
  12. Grader4me

    Grader4me Member
    Messages: 44


    I can relate to that somewhat. I get to go/drive with the new one person plow operators to train them, but most storms I just watch it come down.
    This for me was a big adjustment, because all my life (since I was sixteen) I was out there in all kinds of conditions plowing snow.
    It's nothing compared to being home because of an injury though, but I can see why it would be tough not being out there..
     
  13. VAhighwayman

    VAhighwayman Senior Member
    Messages: 155

    At least you get to go out and train...they just tossed my butt out to pasture..saying I can't do the job anymore...nice for people to tell me what I can do and can't do when they aren't the ones that got injured. It takes me alil longer to get in the equipment..but once i'm in...i'm ready to go...but..hey..i'll deal with it
     
  14. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,853

    I feel for you VAhighway, a few years back I tried to work it so I was available during the day for plowing while my guys went out at night. Could get paperwork done, answer phones, etc. It sucked royally. Happened one year and that changed, but thankfully it's my company and I can do that. I don't think I could handle not being out during the storms.