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ATV SNOW RMOVAL PRICING, Sub Contracting and equipment

Discussion in 'ATV / UTV Snow Removal' started by bobbyjoonn, Oct 14, 2009.

  1. bobbyjoonn

    bobbyjoonn Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    Hi guys,

    i have got 6 new clients all of which they need side walk removal, what i would like to know is how much should i charge per hour and what should be my minimum charge.
    i still havn't purchased any ATV's
    so my secand question would be how much should i be looking at to subcontract the work to someone else?
    and my last question would be do the electic lift plows for atv's LAST?
    What't the best brand out there?

    thanks in advance
  2. PatriotLawnCare

    PatriotLawnCare Junior Member
    from WV
    Messages: 8

    Not sure about some of the above, but as for durability of the equipment, I have plowed my 320 ft x 10 ft driveway (Which is at a 23 degree angle) with my 05 Honda Rancher 4x4 every winter since it was brand new. I also plow a church with a large lot down the road from me as well as my own church and a few other places. I had to rebuild part of the winch once but that was from being stuck in a hole in the summer and stripping out the plastic gears the planetaries turn in at the end of the case (Stupid warn 1500 winches are made cheaply). I have a 2500 Warn on my 04 Rubicon 4x4 and have had no trouble with it whatsoever. Its also had a rough life of plowing, hunting, and riding. I haven't had to anything to either one of my atv's except maintenance stuff. My Rubicon has 1300 miles, I'm sure the rancher has at least double that maybe more.
  3. kevin-k

    kevin-k Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    Hey Patriot, how long does it take for you to do your driveway after a 6" fall? and does the blade scrape down to the asphalt/concrete or does it leave a little bit of snow on the surface? Thank you, much appreciated.
  4. PatriotLawnCare

    PatriotLawnCare Junior Member
    from WV
    Messages: 8

    I'm in south eastern WV, so I haven't seen 6" fall at once for several years. 4 is usually the max we get in one snow event. I plow it in an hour or so (Actual plowing, not getting the four wheeler started and tires aired up and whatever else needs done.) including salting the whole thing. I need an electric salt spreader for my atvs, I used a pull behind one last year and it didn't work great. The plow leaves a very small amount of ice against the concrete, my concrete is finished with stripes across it for traction. I have to salt all of it and wait for the ice to turn to slush before we can safely drive off of it. If the concrete was smooth across I think the plow would be work a little better and once I get salt on it, it melts quickly. I'm also thinking about one of those 10 ft boomless sprayers and using a chemical on the driveway instead of salt. Anyone with experience with one?
  5. kevin-k

    kevin-k Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    Thanks for the info Patriot. I'm looking in to the aftermarket down pressure systems. I was considering getting Blackline plows but I have heard too many negatives about the quality. By the way, the ATVs are for about 80 really small drives in a condo unit. I'm looking in to getting Arctic cats or Hondas but I have no idea as to which plow to get. Whatever it is the plow will have to have down pressure and power controls, otherwise I'll probably lose the account.
  6. mercer_me

    mercer_me PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,371

    I like Arctic Cat, but you are you going to get alot of opinions on what the best brand is. The best lift system is a winch IMO.
  7. Badgerland WI

    Badgerland WI Senior Member
    Messages: 161

    Let me preface this by saying that I am a BlackLine dealer, although I'm trying to be as objective as possible because I also sell another great plow system offering acutated or hydro downforce. I don't work for them nor am I getting a pay-out (even though I should since one of my trucks is now on their home page!) :rolleyes:

    A little background on BlackLine... their plow systems were apparently problematic in the past, mainly due to the old 1-1/4" receiver mount not being sturdy enough. They also had some electrical problems in that time frame which needed to be sorted. In certain cases, this was due to improper installation (I've seen this first-hand). Luckily, I wasn't a dealer or involved with them in the slightest during that time period. They have re-designed the mount and are utilizing a 2" receiver for most applications now. They truly pioneered the ATV/UTV plow using a down-pressure system (actuator provides 17" of lift clearance and 500lbs of downforce). This year (and after lots of screaming from their interactive dealers), they finally introduced a 4-Way hydraulic model with incorporated float mode.

    BlackLine does a great job of offering a nicely packaged system on the heavier-duty end of the spectrum, just expect to pay a price premium for it. You cant compare a winch-lifted blade that relies on the blade weight against an actuated or hyrdo blade system with down pressure... there is no comparison.

    BlackLine did have some very problematic people on their staff who did not always follow-through and apparently left some dealers and consumers hanging in the past. I can tell you that they fired everyone during the off-season this year and it's just Wes at the helm ensuring everyone is getting the customer service and follow-through they expect.

    I know that BlackLine sold a lot of plow systems, especially early-on when they introduced the design. Most complaints I've ever heard were back from that early time. I've heard nothing but good feedback from my customers so far and I have not seen recent complaints from others (unless I've missed something). Even if something did go wrong, it really comes down to the customer service your dealer should be offering you and ensuring that you are well taken care of because BlackLine does have a renewed priority in assisting their dealers with any customer service issues.

    I have personal acquaintances that use equipment from the other manufacturers and they're all had their list of issues with those systems. It really comes down to how hard are you going to push the equipment and to keep in mind that nothing is indestructible in this industry.

    Having said all that, I wouldn't rule-out BlackLine unless you personally know of a problem (which I would love to know about). There are always two sides to a story.
  8. Greenwalt

    Greenwalt Member
    Messages: 75

    How much sidewalk do you have to do? Are you planning on having different rates for different amounts of snowfall? Do they want it plowed once when the storm is over, or constantly during the storm? Are they all in a row, or are you going to have drive time involved? How long do you plan on paying off the costs of your equipment? If you subcontract, how much are you looking to make off of each storm? What is the average number of storms per year in your area?
  9. phammer1

    phammer1 Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    King Quad or Rhino... Can't decide

    Last edited: Oct 27, 2009