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1st season under my belt

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by Lockdownd, Mar 19, 2013.


What to do, newbie

  1. Shut your mouth and be happy you got thru

    4 vote(s)
  2. You should be happy but get more for the salting from the cheepo

    4 vote(s)
  3. Get that $25 and more for salting, stop being a weenie

    5 vote(s)
  4. Your the man now, quit your job and start getting $100 an hour next year

    2 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Lockdownd

    Lockdownd Junior Member
    from SE Wi
    Messages: 10

    Year long lurker thanking you all for the advice. I have been doing snow for ppl all my life and got a truck last May. I manage a 12 family building and have got through 3 mild winters with a toro single stage. I decided that it was a pain to do an alley and 8 parking spots with it so I picked up a Chevy 2500 western plow salter set up. Kind of got ripped off on the truck but that's another story. I really love plowing, it's kind of in my blood for life I'm afraid. Besides plowing out my grandma (who I charge) I also do the commercial lot strip mall. The lot is about 90ft by 120ft. I work out of one of the shops there as my full time gig. I will only do the lot when it is early in the a.m., so I don't have to deal with any cars. I just charge the lady a flat rate, but here's the rub, I have to take $25 less cus I store the truck there 6 months a year. Here's the part you will all tell me I am nuts for agreeing to. She is too cheap to have it salted. As a matter of pride I agreed to salt as I saw fit but I only get $10 per 50lb bag spread. So, should I just deal with the $25 less for storage (I think I can) and how much more should I get for salt next year? I do like having a truck to use at the apartment (5 blocks from work) but know I am not getting compensated well for wear and tear on the truck. Should I keep treating this like a hobby because I have a full time job or push for. Better deal and risk losing the arrangement? Thanks in advance :salute:
  2. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    You charge your grandma?:realmad:
  3. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,390

    how are you going to pay for repairs to the tk when it breaks dwn???
    hate to say it,,,but if your not getting paid to do it,,,,why do it.
  4. quigleysiding

    quigleysiding PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,129

    Yup grandma should be a freeeebe.
  5. yardguy28

    yardguy28 Senior Member
    Messages: 485

    I'm with him on charging the grandma.

    when my great aunt was living I charged her full price for lawn care and snow removal. my parents pay full price indirectly for everything as well. they credit my rent bill each month. my great uncle pays full price for snow removal.

    my grandma pays $10 each visit for anything I show up to do.

    I don't share this family is free idea. they are paying clients just like everyone else. but that's just my opinion
  6. Lockdownd

    Lockdownd Junior Member
    from SE Wi
    Messages: 10

    That's kind of what I am thinking. I will have to keep doing this for 20 years to break even it would seem. I enjoy being able to have the lot for my shop being done right and not having having it done whenever and leaving snow around cars and in lanes. It also saves me time and my ass being able to use it at the apartment building. One other factor is my GF likes going out in the summer in it, she gets all excited to be able to slide over the bench seat while we cruse around. That is kind of priceless as my chances of getting lucky go up like 50 percent after a date in the beast, lol. As for Grammy, she doesn't live close and I only get $20 for little over an hour when it's all said and done. I don't feel a bit guilty about getting paid that amount.

    I had dreams every night till winter hit of the truck just falling apart in the first storm (nightmares) I am happy it held up but the stress till this point was great.
  7. coldcoffee

    coldcoffee Senior Member
    Messages: 776

    "She can’t do that, she’s on a very fixed income! Stop the show!!"

  8. Lockdownd

    Lockdownd Junior Member
    from SE Wi
    Messages: 10

    :laughing: nice. She hasn't treatened to cancel Christmas yet so I think I am o.k. for now :nod: or should I say festivus?
  9. Triton2286

    Triton2286 Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    So your willing to go broke just to ave a truck with a bench seat for your gf?

    Seriously, your going to loose your ass if you keep doing what your doing. Snow Removal is not a half ass'd business, either you put yourself into it or you don't.

    You shouldn't be taking a cut on what you get paid per storm because you store the truck, You should be paying her for 6mo. What happens when you have 10+ storms in a season, then she makes more money off you?

    None of your arrangements make any sense at all. Why is everything so complicated?
  10. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    Hell with the salt,fall and sue her,shouldn't bother you,your charging your grandma!
  11. Lockdownd

    Lockdownd Junior Member
    from SE Wi
    Messages: 10

    I am doing it 3/4 ass'd in my opinion. I am not making a good amount for my work at the strip mall or Grammys, but I do get compensated well at the apartment building ($350 off of $640 rent, heat included) I should not have bid against myself by $25 to get the account, I guess I am using the truck parking to justify my foolishness. I do need somewhere to put the truck when the plow is on it as the city won't allow street parking when it's attached. I also will plow when we get .01 inch and salt to boot so the big storms are not as hard to swallow. Everyone told me I was crazy for buying the truck and they were right. I am vrey great full that I didn't try to add more accounts and the truck held up.

    As far as the bucket seat love, maybe I didn't get hugged enough as a kid but I am a big fan of the "slide over". This is also my first truck, I drove mini vans my whole life before this.

    As far as suing the strip mall owner, I would also be suing my dad cus his shop is respond able for 30 present of the lot. I do have comerical insurance on the truck 6 mo. Of the year but didn't get s&f ins.
  12. Triton2286

    Triton2286 Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    1. Plowing every .01 inches? Good luck with that.

    2. And it's "grateful" not great full.
  13. Lockdownd

    Lockdownd Junior Member
    from SE Wi
    Messages: 10

    I prob should have said "as little as .01 inch" meaning I will plow and charge for snow I could do with a broom. It makes it easier for me to accept that I get the same amount for .01 as I do for 6 inches.

    I am grateful for you correcting my poor understanding of grammar, you are a grate guy :)

    I get it, i am in a hole and keep on digging. I just don't want to throw in the towel. I want to keep chasing that great white snow dream!
  14. coldcoffee

    coldcoffee Senior Member
    Messages: 776

    Psssst...Thought this might help:

  15. Lockdownd

    Lockdownd Junior Member
    from SE Wi
    Messages: 10

    Umm...yeah....that's just to illustrate my point.....yeah, that's it. I mean .01 inch, should have said .0001 inch, that would have been hilarious, ha he haha...ha. *saves face*
  16. maverjohn

    maverjohn Senior Member
    Messages: 902

    HAHAHAHAHA ! Thats Funny !
  17. alldayrj

    alldayrj PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,108

    Where is the lot? I need to park my trucks and that a hell of a deal
  18. Lockdownd

    Lockdownd Junior Member
    from SE Wi
    Messages: 10

    I might as well move on to the truck buying story.

    The stats
    Chevy 2500 8 lug
    Western unimount pro plow 7.05 ft :)
    Swing away tailgate salter holds about 500ilbs of salt
    67,000 miles, low body rust, RCLB, burgundy.
    Paid $3500.00

    The story was that this truck was purchased by a local high school new and was washed and stored indoors. Took it for a ride and she seemed good, dropped the plow and scared a few ppl. Pushed the plow a few 100 feet and annoyed a few more pedestrians. The guy selling it seemed like a nice, straight to the point, no b.s. kind of guy. I was a bit concerned about the stiff shifting between 1st and 2nd so asked to take it to my mechanic to look over. He drove it around, put it on the lift and Sid it would be fine for a plow truck. I asked him about the hard shifting an he said it had a shift kit. Not sure how he could tell that but I was sold at that point. Talked him down a few hundred and was about to pull off when the guy went and popped the hood. Said he wanted to check the oil as some other guys on the area had their drain plugs pulled by vandals. Seemed kind of strange but still basking in the glow of new found American truck ownership. Thn comes the rub. I took the truck to get the dual exhaust put on (the truck came with y pipe to a muffler under the cab) A guy t my church owns a national chain car repair place and he was not doing the best so I wanted to throw him a bone. Calls me up sounding kind of panicked and said that the the break system was crap and I got taken. Seems some jack-wagon put oil or some other petroleum based product into the break system. He sounded generally pissed and was convinced that the seller had knowledge of the problem, as the system was flushed and parts replaced. So the long and short of it was I paid 670.00 to have the lines washed out, master rebuilt new caliper installed and other odds and ends. He said if I had brought it over to him he would have noticed the deformed rubber under the res cap and told me not to buy it. So I had to keep the crap exhaust and be happy the breaks were no longer in danger of locking up on me. I didn't put any more money into the truck besides fluids all around, and I did that all myself, oil, trans, diff, transfer. This was a mistake to buy but I am grateful it was a $4200 mistake and not more. Taking on a commercial account with only one truck is a big risk and a ton of stress and worry. The truck and plow held up fine this winter, 80 inches this year. The cutting edge will need to be replaced but I think that's all I see at this point that will need to be addressed at this point.

    The plow came with wings but my Dad said that if I dump the plow in his back yard I had to remove the wings. He thought it was just too much of a monster with them on, so I did as he wished and sold them off. This truck stacked the snow 6 feet high without a problem. I was careful to never slam it harder than 6-10 mph when piling it up. The nice thing about this lot is I can push the snow the long way and at the end of the lot there is about 30 feet of lawn I can push everything back to, I needed all of that space to keep the blacktop all the way clear.

    I don't think I will ever be a hardcore plow master but this year has been a trip and I am happy that it turned out as well as it did, even tho it is more of a hobby that a side job. I hope to be able to pay myself by the year 2027 or sooner!

    Edit: Truck brakes, not breaks, saved you a post ;)
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  19. Triton2286

    Triton2286 Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    Class is in session! Thumbs Up
  20. Chineau

    Chineau Senior Member
    Messages: 447

    Take a moment and check out a thread titled I did it again, when I started at this as a business a friend who I have since bought out gave me a piece of advice. Find some one every storm and plow them FREE it is karma, or goes round comes round it has been a solid bit of advice. Wish you best of luck as a snow operator.tymusic