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Disappointed with my ATV and plow. Help me out.

Discussion in 'ATV / UTV Snow Removal' started by jason9696, Dec 14, 2009.

  1. jason9696

    jason9696 Junior Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 16

    So this will be my first season plowing my approximately 50 yard long paved driveway with a two car dooryard. I have a '03 Arctic Cat 400 4x4 with a 54" Kimpex Click N' Go plow that is raised and lowered with the factory winch. I have no chains, and stock tires.

    My problem started with our first big storm, which was around 8" or so. I couldn't plow it all day, because I was at work. When I did get to plow I think it was too much for the wheeler to push. I kept getting halfway down the driveway and unable to push the pile any further. The wheeler would just go sidways and start spinning. It took me longer to plow it as it used to with my 32" Ariens snowblower.

    What am I missing here? I dropped some serious coin on this setup compared to a snowblower and I thought it would be a lot faster than snowblowing.

    However the other night we only got 3 to 4" and the thing worked like a charm, it only took me less than half an hour.

    Do I need chains or something?

    Any input would be great.

  2. kelly67

    kelly67 Junior Member
    Messages: 7

    chains on a paved driveway might not be a great idea! they will tear up your pavement. I would say your machine an plow are matched good. This morning I plowed 6" of very heavy snow with no probs. I do run chains as well. an when I'm at the end of the road on pavement they to spin more then. My drive an road are gravel. were you angeled or pushing everything straight? how heavy was the snow?
  3. jason9696

    jason9696 Junior Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 16

    The snow was pretty heavy, and I was not all the way angled, but not straight on.
  4. kenidaho

    kenidaho Junior Member
    Messages: 17

    I ran a Suzuki 500 with a 52 inch plow and I could push fine until last year when we got 21 inches in one storm. I was not able to wide the drive out any more but if it is only 6 Inches angle the plade all the way and speed up a bit so the snow rolls off the blade.
  5. fms

    fms Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 209

    In larger storms of wet heavy snow I keep the blade angled all the way, work from the center to the edges and try to keep a head of steam going. I've also put two bags of calcium on the front and rear racks to add a couple hundred pounds. It becomes a weight game sometimes.
  6. skamaniac

    skamaniac Member
    Messages: 38

    Do you have a low range option? I plow in low range with wet heavy snow.

    IPLOWSNO PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,620

    i let mine sit also, wanting to get a base over gravel, then we got some heavy wet snow , so i let that freeze up a little and plowed it down , turned out very nice, then it rained, so i had to push slushoff and it was heavy,

    do it in smaller sections, don't be afraid to lift the blade alittle it will give ya traction, i try to keep my blade just a little above the ground then i will push the suspension down with my body to start digging if i want it up i gas it a little, you will learn the tricks,

    i don't think its faster than blowing but it is usually drier and and it makes ya feel like mr contractor getting a basement put in,

    when we get 4 ' snows here it is an all day deal, as soon as your done you shovel the roof and start the driveway again .
  8. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,780

    Well lets see......... light four wheeler, proportionately large plow, little power.... sounds like a receipe for getting stuck. There was just too much snow for your setup to be efficient.
  9. plowguy43

    plowguy43 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,281

    It happens to trucks as well, just like JDiepstra just said. If you had plowed with the storm you would've been fine. Its when you let the storm pass and then try to plow it all at once that you start to have issues.
  10. bh115577

    bh115577 Senior Member
    Messages: 106

    I had a 400 sportsman with a 60" plow that didn't push the heavy stuff very well. I put chains on and it turned into a tank. No problem with the blacktop either. Wish I had put the chains on from the first day of plowing.

    IPLOWSNO PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,620

    your better off with a base if you wanna run chains, it will kill your pavement,
  12. sublime68charge

    sublime68charge PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,090

    Chains will increase the amount of snow you can push by %10-30 some where in there. though if you due alot of sitting and spinning you'll leave marks on your pavement.

    some weight on the back of the ATV will help out alot also.

    once you get past 6" of snow a ATV can take longer than a good 2 stage blower for snow removal.
    but for the 6" and under the ATV can run circles around the blower.

    you have to look at it over the course of a whole season of snow removal

    10 snowfalls of 6" and under ATV and Plow fast easy simple

    2 big snowfalls ATV can due but takes along time.

    if you just had a blower those 10 snowfalls are no fun at all.

    did you keep your blower or sell it when you got your plow?

    also for the big snow falls you can try and keep the blade up some to plow off the top layer and then go back and plow off the bottom layer.
    just dont go into it with the blade all the way up cause if you spin out you'll be stuck. you need to be able to pick the blade up to try and back up when you spin out.

    just my thoughts.

    sublime out
  13. jason9696

    jason9696 Junior Member
    from Vermont
    Messages: 16

    That's a lot of good information guys.

    Let me answer some questions,

    1. I still have a snowblower

    2. I used low-range for most of the time.

    I don't think that I want to tear up my driveway so I think I will stay away from chains.

    I just thought that with this $3500 investment I could get it done in half the time that it takes my $1000 snowblower to do it in. I guess that assumption is right, if the snow is less than 6" and light.

    I guess I will have to decide whether saving that time in the smaller storms is worth the extra investment of the wheeler.
  14. sublime68charge

    sublime68charge PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,090

    you could also for the big snow falls run you blower up and down the drive a 4-6 times and then go to the ATV and plow to finish up.

    run blower down move over 2' run blower up move over 2' run blower down etc this way you have created space for the ATV and blade to work with.

    this way you can get the bulk of it with the blower and then clean up with the atv.

    Like I said before you have to look at total time invested in snow removal over a whole season.

    also some weight for when your working the bigger snow falls will help out.
    theres many tricks to using the ATV and Plow have you read through the first time plowers theard on here? Lots of great info there to help you out as well.
  15. Sportsman500??

    Sportsman500?? Member
    from PA
    Messages: 93

    Your tires don't have much tread it seems.
  16. mercer_me

    mercer_me PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,371

    Chains would help out alot. If you can help it don't let the snow build up to much before you plow.
  17. lilpusher

    lilpusher Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 140

    I use bags of salt on the front and back racks to weight it down and my 07 rincon does well with 27" ITP's and lift kit LOL
  18. MRadke

    MRadke Member
    from WI
    Messages: 49

    As others have said, weight and momentum are your friend. I carry 140 pounds of sand on my back rack and 70 on the front. The toughest thing on deep, heavy snow is getting the first trail made. Everything else is cake.
  19. cubplower

    cubplower Senior Member
    Messages: 182

    chains will work. add weigt too
  20. MtnCowboy

    MtnCowboy Member
    Messages: 96

    It can be done. Weight down the ATV as much as possible without overloading, make the first pass with the blade fully angled; if necessary, take less of a bite by raising the blade -- and chains on blacktop aren't a bad idea if you can find the regular kind, not the typical ATV v-bars. But if you are spinning any type of chain on pavement you will cause damage.

    I have a mile-long mountain road and run a Grizzly 660 with winch-operated Warn 60" straight blade and a top extension flap (to give more blade surface- not as a powder flap). The unit has a cool Montana Jack's receiver system w/ elevated winch "gismo." Two bags of sand on the rear rack and one on the front. The front wheels are chained with standard 2-link and the rear with 4-link v-bars which I remove for the lower portion of the road, which is asphalt.

    In 2007 I busted through 3 feet of snow -- and after a rain. It was hell but it was doable. The 660 grunted all the way through that first pass. Once the first pass is done you can nibble at the rest. Picture is from 2006, 3 weeks after I bought the ATV. I've used a truck mounted plow and snowblowers too, and have rented heavy equipment. All have their usefulness and drawbacks.

    Good luck.

    cloud snow.JPG