1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

American or Foreign????

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by ChicagoSnow, Dec 16, 2001.

  1. ChicagoSnow

    ChicagoSnow Senior Member
    Messages: 231

    I am currently looking for users "factual" information in regard to crew cab trucks to be used for plowing/salting.

    Thinking about Ford F-450/550 crew cab ,7.3PSD, central hyd., tail gate salter - v plow or Mitsubishi 4x4 crew cab, Diesel(other options same as above)??

    The only reason I'm considering Mitsubishi is the overall size and turning ratio of a cab over truck. It would allow for a larger dump body(great for landscape/summer work) and good turning for salt applications and plowing.

    I have heard other's post threads regarding Mitsu. truck frames bending?? Apparently not quite the frame thickness as it's American competition.

    I don't want to buy a Landscape only rig! This truck must be crew cab and must be able to take the strain of snow removal.

    Appreciate your help!

  2. CT18fireman

    CT18fireman Banned
    Messages: 2,133

    I would talk to GeoffD about the SD Fords. He knows a lot about the options and such. I think overall they will be heavier (GVW) and more powerful then the Mitsu. I would go with the Ford but others may go differently. I am not sure what a crew cab will do to affect the GVW on either truck.
  3. plowking35

    plowking35 2000 Club Member
    from SE CT
    Messages: 2,923

    Is the mitsi available with Crew cab and 4wd??
    If not then the Ford may be your only option/.
  4. mdb landscaping

    mdb landscaping Senior Member
    Messages: 823

    maybe you should talk to mow money on lawnsite. he has a few mitsubishis he plows with. maybe he can tell you the pros and cons of the truck.
  5. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,154

    4wd is the decisding factor,IMO.turning radius on the Ford will be huge,the cabover should outmaneaver it.Can the crew cab cabovers even take plows?Better check with the body guys,or salemmen,it may take a bigger truck than you wany(GVWR) wise to get one that will plow,and have crewcab.I cant validate them,buy Ive heard horror storys baout frmaes bending on the import cabovers,most had the plow frame built/installed incorrectly,but with a crew cab this will only get worse.
  6. Jerryjks

    Jerryjks Junior Member
    Messages: 14

    Mitsubishi does not make 4WD crew cab. Frame bending ??? Been plowing with '92 Mitsi FG with 9' Fisher and Pro wings since new and never had frame problems. Makes great plow truck.
  7. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    No plows on crew cabs.

    The other thing is we have a few crew cab trucks. They are good for our utility side. when we need to put 5 or 6 guys on the road, with a lot of equipment. However they wouldn't plow well at all. Just way to long, we sanded with one once, even that was too hard to turn around in spots.

    I just think crew cab trucks, with an 8' body the smallest you can get are too long for plowing. If it was me and I had to have a crew cab, it would have to be the cab over.

    As for frame failures of the foreign autos, i don't have any information to add to that.

    I would recomend, a regular cab for plowing. The 550's don't turn verry tight, and the shorter the truck the better. Ford says no plows, however if you wanted to add one, I am sure you could. I think you would have a bigger problem, not being able to plow well. Before you had front end problems.

  8. ChicagoSnow

    ChicagoSnow Senior Member
    Messages: 231

    I know the length of this F-550 would be huge..... but comparable to what - International 4700 - 4900(no 4x4)??

    Or how about going with lets say just a straight crew cab truck for landscape/maintenance services(Ford, Mitsubishi or Isuzu) no 4x4 - no worry about size issues!

    Just stick to smaller trucks for plowing sounds fine, but I just hate seeing such a large equipment purchase sitting still in the winter.

    I guess it would make for a very expensive sidewalk clearing truck if I had to?

    What do you think?


    Oh.......thanks for the quick responses!
  9. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    Ok comparing the F 550 to an International 4700, is like comparing apples to oranges.

    The 4700 is almost equal to a Ford F 650. These trucks are wider than the F 550, and are a true medium duty truck, with 4X4 being a verry expensize option.

    I will tell you honestly that you will not want to plow with a crew cab, the truck is just too long. My crew cabs are exactly what you decribe them as, expensize shoveling trucks. However in the summer, the crew cabs are great, they carry 5 or 6 guys, and all the equipment needed with in payload specs.

    My F 650 regular cab, can do circles around my F 550 crew cab. My question is if you don't want to see it sitting. Can you use a larger truck like the F 650 in your operation. Maybe an F 650 super cab, short 8 or 9' body (i think you can get one that short). Tailgate spreader, and 10 plow. The good thing about a true medium duty truck, is it is much easier to upfit. Infact the F 650 because it is 2 wd, is going to be cheaper than the F 550 crew cab. However just remember it is a 2wd truck, good for open lots and roads, but no use on drives.

    The super cab will give you room to add a few extra passengers, however short enough to not be too much of an isshue. The F 550 crew cab is just going to be too long. My other though it, buy a F 550 regular cab 4X4, with the plow and spreader. Then buy a cheap used 96 Ford escort, and use that to run your employees around in the summer.

  10. CT18fireman

    CT18fireman Banned
    Messages: 2,133

    All that knowledge on Fords Geoff why did you pick a 96 Escort???
  11. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    I think 96 was the last year of the body style prior to the one that last 2 or 3 years before the Focus took over. The thing about that body style, was all the bugs were worked out. Parts are fairly cheap, and a used 96 would be fairly cheap.

  12. ChicagoSnow

    ChicagoSnow Senior Member
    Messages: 231

    Ok guys ............. what can you tell me about medium duty trucks(International 4700, F-650's and so on) and their 2 wheel drive trains - have you ever blown rear ends, trans- due to "excessive wheel slip"?

    The reason I know the term excessive wheel slip is because on my 1998 Isuzu NPR HD(2 wheel drive) I have already gone through 2 rear ends with only 19,000 miles on it! Each rear end failure was from snow plowing. (Now that truck is a dedicated salter only)

    If the jobs are large enough to handle a medium duty truck..do I have any possible problems with the 2 wheel drive train?

  13. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    Excessive wheel slip is do to a driver who doesn't know what he is doing or a truck that is geared too high. Also I am not sure of the quality of rear end these foreign trucks have.

    My Ford F 650 do fine, they are 2wd, with on spot tire chains. Add on spot chains, drop the chains before entering the lot, and you will have no problems. Make sure the truck has a low first gear, to start off in. Plus with a load in the body, and on spots you will have no problem

    My oldest F 650 a 2000 model, just rolled over to 80,000 miles.

    Last edited: Dec 17, 2001
  14. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    So what are you going to do?

  15. staley52

    staley52 Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 98

    I have run big trucks and small trucks 2 and 4 wheel drive smallest a 88 1 ton 2wd chevy w8.5 western all the way up to a L8000 w/18' grain bed and 10' hienke plow the boss bought all trucks used and we have used some for 5+ years and yet to blow out a rear end in any of the 28(only 3 of witch are 4x4) trucks its all in the driver and the maintenence
    Also I can plow a tiny lot with a L8000 better than most of the greenhorns in the pickups
  16. ChicagoSnow

    ChicagoSnow Senior Member
    Messages: 231

    To respond to the "whick truck" question?

    I think I will stay with the Ford F-450 or 550! The only detail I'm probably over thinking is the option of standard/super or crew cab on this truck. I just can't decide if I wan't a multi-use vehicle or dedicated "big lot" truck?

    It is very important to my company that any vehicle purchase is related to 12 month(all season)use.

    What would be the difference on a International 4700 and F-550 crew cab 4x4............ Length about same??? 550 gain 4x4?? 550 you lose payload??

    I figure go with central hydraulics and hopefully gain some payload on the F-550 w/under tailgate spreader instead of V box.

    Let me know your thoughts,

  17. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266

    The difference between the 2, The F550 crew cab and F 650 regular cab is this.

    Payload, F 650 is higher.

    The F 650 regular cab, will out turn the F 550 crew cab, any day.

    You will get a much better central Hydro system on the F 650, then the F 550.

    I just don't see an F 550 Crew Cab as a good plow truck. The other thing is there is no plow package for the F 550 crew cab, nor is plowing with a crew cab recomended by Ford.

    I will tell you right now, if you got an F 650 super cab, with the short frame option, which will give you a 9' body. A 9' body is Probably the same body lenght you could get with the F 550 crew cab. You will have more vollume, and more weight capacity with the F 650. If you went with a regular cab F 650, it would be shorter than your F 550 crew cab,

    As far is 4X4, the F 650 when equipment with on spot chains, will plow just fine.

    As far as the truck being used year round. Well we often use our F 650 to sand or salt driveways, with verry few problems. I think you are in the landscape biz? Well that F 650 will go just about anywhere the F 550 will fit. The only thing the truck won't be able to do well, is plow driveways, however do you think the F 550 crew cab would be much better?

    Last edited: Dec 20, 2001
  18. phillyplowking1

    phillyplowking1 Senior Member
    Messages: 412

  19. ChicagoSnow

    ChicagoSnow Senior Member
    Messages: 231

    Ok F-650 .................. your selling me .........go on!!!

    What are on spot chains? Never heard of them.

    Would you go F-650 or International 4700 or??

    I don't know but after the trouble I had with my Isuzu NPR HD, I just have a un-easy feeling regarding 2 wheel drive plow trucks.
    Can a 2 wheel drive F-650 clear out a loading ramp(maintain traction) without sliding in a incline......or traction to back drag??

    I will say the F-650 would make one hell of a salter! Central hydraulics w/high side 10-14' dump.....NICE!

    Geoff, you mentioned a shortened frame on the 650, whats that?

    Thanks for your help!

  20. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266