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At what point do you switch?

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by grandview, Oct 1, 2009.

  1. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    At what point do you switch from plowing a lot with a truck(s) to a loader? Over 1hour or 2 or 3?
  2. augerandblade

    augerandblade PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,054

    About 2 hours IMO depending also on what the truck is making per hour. If its lanes more than lots and I dont have to push the snow to far then I get a truck there. big lots need big box plows attached to heavy equipment
  3. TCLA

    TCLA 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,707

    At the point where the loader would be there for at least 4 hours. Most loader owners seem unwilling to work only a couple hours.....can't blame them.

    I've been know to negotiate a minimum rate (the equivalent of 4-6 hours pay) which gives them the incentive to finish the job earlier, thus making more per hour for themselves.

    Most of these guys want to work bookoo hours.....hard to accommodate that and keep your clients happy.
  4. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    We run our loader from site to site. Each of the lots would take 2-3 hours with a truck during a 3" snowfall, much more if more snow. They take about an hour (or less) with the loader after a truck spends a couple minutes cutting in.
  5. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,253

    Dedicated loader?

    Or as Mike asked, one that you transport?
  6. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    Along that line, it would have to depend on how close other lots were. I have a couple lots that would be nice with a loader, but everything is miles apart around here. If I built the village area up a little, I could consider going with a machine. JD 244 would be the perfect size machine for me, but not yet.
  7. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    mike do you leave a box at each site or do you just pile up some matchboxes along the way:D
  8. bskiball

    bskiball Member
    Messages: 64

    What took 12 - 14 hours with two trucks took me 7-8 with a loader and 1 truck and I added a four acre lot into the route. Just my experiance. My operator drove my loader about 7 miles around town on the road for each storm, all with a 12 foot protech attatched. He said he lifted over cars alot on side roads but it was not bad on wider lanes. My operator thought i should have bought a truck... until five minutes into the first plow. He's a believer in pushers now.
  9. cold_and_tired

    cold_and_tired PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,247

    I get paid by the hour so the loader only gets action during a blizzard or when we have a lot of stacking to do.
  10. Brad3403

    Brad3403 Senior Member
    from Alberta
    Messages: 392

    I tried finding a picture of a JD 244 with no luck. How many ponies is it? Price?...Thanks
  11. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

  12. RLM

    RLM PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,270

    We had 2 pushers last year a 14' & a 10', the operator used the 14' at 2 sites VERY close together, then switched & took the 10' to the other sites. This year I'm just going to get a permit, & use a 14' Flags & flashers down the road. We have yet to hi anything on the road.
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2009
  13. Superior L & L

    Superior L & L PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,041

    That is for sure!!!! In the old days after 7-8 hours my truck guys are wanting to go home, but the excavators are like " whats next". Now i dont run anyone that long
  14. Peterbilt

    Peterbilt Senior Member
    from IA.
    Messages: 745

    I use my loaders on as many of my lots as possible. With the pushers, I can plow a lot 3 to 4 times as fast no matter what size the lot is. We drive them from lot to lot, I don't dedicate a machine to any specific place.

    Usually the loaders head out and start pushing at the same time as the trucks, but after a truck does 2 accounts and a loader does 4 or 5, my trucks will start spreading salt and chasing the loaders back to the shop.

    I run compact loaders. 2 Volvo L20Bs. I run 10 and 12ft pushers on them. They run fairly open routes, where they drive anywhere from a couple feet from lot to lot or a couple miles. This season I am adding an L35B with high speed and a Deere 5083E to the fleet. Hopefully the added road speed of these 2 machines will increase my responce times and help us add to our plowing effectiveness.

    The key with loaders Imo is not thinking of how big the lot is, but how fast can I push a lot. I plow 100% by the push. I need to be able to move as fast as possible. I look and size every account as a loader account. I hardly ever think of accounts as a truck account. If I can get a loader in a place, I don't bid it. Lucky for me, the smaller loaders can go everywhere we plow.

    Since I started working it like this we have cut our plow times down from 12+ hrs to roughly 5 to 6 depending on the storm and thats with a 35% increase in plowing accounts from 2007/08 to 2008/09. 2009/10 looks to be a better year with possibly a 50% projected increase in business.

    We plow 50 Plus mid sized commercial and condo association accounts.

    Last edited: Oct 3, 2009