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Complete Newbie Needing Some Advice

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by dvl_987, Nov 13, 2010.

  1. dvl_987

    dvl_987 Junior Member
    from Canada
    Messages: 4

    I have a 07 Classic Style GMC Sierria 1500, Im looking at picking up a used winter wolf plow to plow my country driveway, and a few other drive ways.

    Im wondering what i would need to do to the truck to make sure its ready for the task ahead.

    Im pretty sure the plow is a 7 foot blade. With a winch to raise and lower the blade.

    Sorry for being so vague, im new at the whole plow scene.
  2. Mr. Horsepower

    Mr. Horsepower Member
    Messages: 45

    "Winch to raise and lower the blade"

    Is the plow not hydraulic lift and tilt? I'd stay away from anything that was not.
    Other than that, make sure the mechanicals of the vehicle are all in good condition, brakes, belts, hoses, and all front end components.

    BTW check the brake and hydraulic hard and flexible lines carefully. In our area they use liquid calcium chloride on the roads, and it is absolutely brutal on vehicle undercarriages. 2 years ago I had to replace rear spring shackles and last year both the brake and power steering hard lines failed - all due to corrosion and of course all failures during a storm. This was on a 52,000 mi vehicle, never had these kind of issues before the Town started using the LCC. :mad:
  3. KMBertog

    KMBertog PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,129

    If it's on a winch I would steer clear.

  4. whiteowl

    whiteowl Junior Member
    Messages: 29

    Winter Wolf plow w/electric winch

    I have owned a Winterwolf (Built by Snowbear) for about10 seasons now. I use it on my
    3 1/2 car wide by 30 ft long driveway plus I have a buddy with a snowmobile/snowblower store. His Asphalt drive is about two acres. After I do my drive, if necessary, I will help him clear his parking lot, along with plowing a few of my neighbors. It has an easy on/off mounting system. I have it mounted on my "99" Wrangler.

    So far it has given me NO grief. For the money, I saved a lot of dollars over a new $3500- $4500 hydraulic unit. I paid about $995 for it new at Sams Club. It has not failed me yet. The thing I am careful about is keeping the winch motor dry. If you use them and leave the motor uncovered and leave it outside you run the risk of melting snow leaking into the motor endcaps and then freezing, possibly cracking the interior stators. That issue has been reported a few times on this site. Fortunately mine is garage kept year round.

    I Had a breathable nylon cover with elastic ends made to wrap the motor. It keeps the motor nice and dry in any conditions and disapates heat nicely. Works great. I also repainted the moldboard last year. And I don't have to change oil or do a tuneup every season!!

    I saved a lot of money and I don't mind getting out of the cab to angle the blade when necessary. It's very east to do.

    The only thing I have had to replace are one pair of skid shoes, which can be expected after a few years. They are made to be wear items anyway. That is true with any plow.

    I also cleaned the motor electrical contacts for the first time this year.

    For the money, and just for personal use, this plow is a great bargan. Even the scraper blade is still in good shape. When the blade eventually wears, just turn it up side down for a fresh edge. I haven't had to do that yet. The wired remote is no big deal either. Just hang it in the drivers window and go. They offer an expensive wireless remote but I don't want or need to spend the money.

    For an inexpensive solution I recommend this unit. It has paid for itself a few times over. I'm pushing my 70's and I have no problems. Just use it as advertised, stay within its engineered limits and I think you will be pleasantly suprised. And no, I don't work for the company.....

  5. whiteowl

    whiteowl Junior Member
    Messages: 29


    I would suggest the seller show to you the lift motor is in good shape b/4 you take it home. Otherwise, as of last year a new Warn motor for this rig is over $200.

  6. dvl_987

    dvl_987 Junior Member
    from Canada
    Messages: 4

    First, Thanks for all the comments I appreciate the feedback.

    Long story short, I have the plow and am getting ready to re wire it and custom install it into the truck.

    Other then the tips listed above, anything I should know?

    Any mods to the truck?
    Mods to the plow?
    Should I put weight in the bed of the truck?

    I will be travelling roughly 30 mins on the highway with the pllow on the truck. I read somewhere that that causes the engine to heat up because the plow blocks proper air flow into the engine. Is this true?

    Any help is greatly appreciated.
  7. whiteowl

    whiteowl Junior Member
    Messages: 29

    Winter Wolf plow w/electric winch

    I would be careful when trucking this rig in the open highway. I personally have not had an engine heating issue with this plow mounted on my Jeep but I rarely go further than 5-10 miles from home base with it.

    Another thing to be wary of when transporting this plow is what I call "chain slap" Over about 20 mph, any small bump in the road will cause the plow to flip up a few inches, then slap down on the chain with the full weight of the blade causing torture to the gears on the motor. To avoid this I had a welder add two eye hooks (which he fabricated for me), one to the solid upper support frame and one to the lower plow support frame. Do not weld to the tubing frame. He then made me and "S" hook out of 5/8 round stock that I push through both eyes and secure with a cotter pin., then I take the slack out of the chain with the manual crank to put compression stress on the "S" hook, not the chain. It works well, taking all of the slack out of the chain. The bumps in the road have little effect on the blade stability because it is temporarly fixed in place. When I get to my plowsite the bracket hook is easy to remove, ready to go to work. I've been using it for years. BTW, I have no idea of how this fix would work with a cable instead of a chain lift, but it might work there too. I'm suprised Winter Wolf doesn't fabricate this fix from the factory except they don't want their plows on the open road, period.

    Has anybody else come up with a different solution for this problem??


    Before anybody asks, no, I don't have any pictures of this setup. It's sorta awkward to get a camera in there at a decent angle to get a good shot.
  8. dvl_987

    dvl_987 Junior Member
    from Canada
    Messages: 4

    Well it snowed like crazy last week, so I got to go out and test my new toy. Works quite well for my needs.

    Got a couple questions....

    How low should I set the plow? Should I put it down all the way? Or just enough to skim the snow? I'm worried that if I put It all the way down, it might damage the plow or catch on the cracks in the road or catch on the gravel on my driveway.

    Also what is the best method to clear the snow? Should I angle the blade one direction and plow, the back up and do the next row...and so on ans so on? Or is there a better method?
  9. geer hed

    geer hed Senior Member
    Messages: 275

    First is does this have a float position on the controls or is it power up and down ?

    If it has a float position and your on black top put it in float that way it will follow the contour of what your plowing. If it is power down only you will want to drop it untill it hits the ground then unwind a little extra cable so that if you go over a high spot it won't lift the plow off the ground. This will be the same with or without the shoes on the bottom of the plow. It would have to be a pretty good size crack and perfectly straight with the angle of the plow in order for it to catch, however you may feel a little bump when you go over a crack.

    Now for gravel, if you use the shoes on the plow you just need to be cautous as they can tend to dig in and leave two groovs in the driveway, (if the ground isn't frozen yet). If your not using the shoes then you want to drop the plow till it hits the ground, then bump the switch in the up position to pick the blade up just enough that it's not hitting the ground. Now yes this will leave a little snow behind, but it will also leave your gravel in place. Hey unless you don't mind raking all the gravel back out in the spring, thats up to you. Either way if you take it easy and take your time you shouldn't damage anything.

    Now as far as which way to push the snow, alot depends on what type snow you get. (ie.wet or powdery).
    Also how much snow you get. This will all make a difference especially since your plow is lighter than a regular full size plow, due to it will ride up over top of the snow easier. The best thing to do is try pushing the snow with the blade in each direction (ie. straight,angle left-right) to see what works best for your situation.
    Without actually seeing what your plowing I can't honestly tell you what would be best. even though most guys will CLAIM that pushing one way then the other is the best, the fact is what works for me may put you upside down and outa gear. (thats only a phrase-----I hope).
  10. dvl_987

    dvl_987 Junior Member
    from Canada
    Messages: 4

    Its a power up and down, there is no float position. Im glad to hear that it wont catch anything very easily. The plow didnt come with shoes on it, and from what im understanding, for my use it dosent seem like its going to be all that necessary as the plow is not hydrolic and can "float" over anything that may present a problem.

    Am i incorrect in thinking this? or sould i look into getting some shoes?
  11. geer hed

    geer hed Senior Member
    Messages: 275

    Well most plows are made to "trip" This is where if you catch something or if the blade starts to dig in it will fold down, or lay over, this is normal so that it won't brake things. I'm hoping this plow has this function. If so it will have a pivot point for the blade to trip and some sort of springs to make it return to the up position.

    Before I scare you, your usuall flaws in the ground (ie. cracks,pot holes,high spots) should not cause any problems. but things such as a rock, stump, curb along the sides can cause major problems if your not carefull, and catch them the wrong way.

    And the depate on shoes, or no shoes is about as bitter as which truck is best. Me personaly, I hate shoes, I've never used em on any plow, (Now that I think of it I am getting quite a collection of them). It's one of those things that you gotta try to see which is best for you.

    Unfortunatly all the advice in the world won't take care of all the problems that you MAY or MAY NOT encounter. You just need to take it nice and easy, don't be in a hurry, and before you know it you'll find yourself zipping through it like it's nothing.