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Hinker plow on Leveled F350 with 35" tires

Discussion in 'Hiniker' started by opformitch, Nov 7, 2011.

  1. opformitch

    opformitch Junior Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 18

    Good morning:

    My new Hiniker 8 foot conventional plow should be ready to pick up in the next couple days so hopefully by this weekend I can mount it on my truck.

    I am a little concerned that the truck I am installing it on is leveled F350 with 35" tires. I know the mounts have a couple different options for mounting heights but I am thinking I will only be able to get the mounts down to 11.5" or 12" instead of the 10" from the ground hiniker recomends (nothing scientific to this estimate, just a semi educated guess).

    I see folks around here running plows on lifted trucks all the time, but I see all sorts of crazy crap with trucks around here so it doesnt mean it is a good idea. I know that if I dont get the push frame and sector to the plow as level as possible I run the risk of rapid wear on the cutting edges and possible plow bounce back.

    Any one else been in this boat? I got a good price (I think) on the plow at $3,500 new but it was still a large purchase. I am not going to have extra money available for a month or so to have the mounts stretched towards the ground.

    I dont think I will do much damage in a couple months but would appreciate your guys opinion.

  2. carkey351

    carkey351 Senior Member
    Messages: 229

    I have seen plenty of lifted plow trucks and they do alright. the only thing might be some extra cutting edge wear, but oh well... If the front end is leveled then that will help with the squatting that may occur due to the plow weight. 2" seems like nothing to worry about to me.. my $.02
  3. opformitch

    opformitch Junior Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 18

    Thanks Carkey:

    I appreciate your .02 man. I know eventually it will cause some uneven wear and also mess with the plows attack angle. The math doesnt quite add up that I will only be 2 inches of, it may be as much as 4 (1 inch for the height of the tire and 2.5 to 3 for the leveling kit). I dont thing the plow is going to sag my front end more than an inch as the plow only weights 618 pounds with truckside hardware, luckily the front springs are farily cheap so hopefuly the squat down nicely. Until I have the parts in my hand I wont know for sure. I see plows on lifted trucks all the time here but still worry that I would do something to hurt my new plow.

    I will follow up on this board with pictures and exact numbers since I know there are lots of folks in similiar prediciments. I pick up the plow tomorrow so pics should be coming by this weekend.

  4. Snowzilla

    Snowzilla Senior Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 397

    You'll just have to see how it looks when mounted. I have about 5-6" of lift on an '89 k1500 and had a welding shop fabricate my bracket down to hiniker specs for a few hundred bucks. A good welding shop can do about anything. If your plow is angled forward due to higher mount it may want to trip easier than it would if it was perpendicular to the ground. Also mounting and dismounting may be more of a chore.

    I just bought the Stop Plate Kit to help with mounting plow (new plows come with this) and was reading in the revised hiniker straight blade manual (page 15), The bolt hole position of where the lift cylinder connects to the scissor lift mechanism is adjustable. From the manual, "Bolting lift cyclinder through the lower set of holes will increase downward plow travel for taller trucks, but reduce lift height".
  5. opformitch

    opformitch Junior Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 18


    I saw the same thing on page 15 in the manual but I dont think that it would have a change on the attack angle of the blade, it will just let the blade drop more and raise less :( . Until I can get some extra $ around and can afford to have the mounts stretched I am thinking I will put a couple extra turns on the trip springs if I notice the plow is laying down too easy. I will also run the plow with the shoes since I need them for the gravel road I live on and hope they will prevent excessive wear on the leading edge of the cutting blade when angled, though as I picture it in my head the shoes wont help much with that.

    Still excited to get the plow and stop frezzing my marbles of plowing snow on a dinky little tractor, not looking at doing any hardcore commercial plowing but since I had to buy the plow I am might as well use it to plow few residential driveways for extra cash, also I see lots of companys looking for part time subs by December in my area. My theory is that all the people I see doing stupid stuff with their equipment around here are broken down by the first month of the season leaving the prime contractors scrambling to get there customers taken care of.

    Appreciate your input
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2011
  6. opformitch

    opformitch Junior Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 18

    To the moderators

    I should take a minute to say that I know this topic has been handled in about 30 other threads on this board but I never came across any good pics or specifications of the issue. I will make sure I follow up on this with good pics and descriptions of my situation as well as my opinions of plow performance before and after having fab work done to bring the plow back to manufacturer specifications.

  7. opformitch

    opformitch Junior Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 18

    Pictures will be here soon

    So I got my new plow mounted and wired up on Friday.

    I am not a certified mechanic in any trade but do consider myself very handy with a wrench, I have also never installed a plow before. My friend was not able to come by and help so everything was done by myself, it isnt that hard so long as you dont let the excitement of your new plow get to your head and cause you to make stupid mechanical decisions. I did not need to rig up and jacks or jackstands as all the parts were fairly easy to manage (75 pounds or less), In my opinion the installation of Hiniker plow to a Leveled Ford F350 on 35 inch tires could be done in a driveway (weather permitting), You will however need a selection of large wrenches and sockets to install the truck mount. To install the mount and the wiring harness took me about 10 hours in total with the majority of that time being spent on the wiring.

    The tools recomended (by me) to install the truck mount are

    1 1/8" inch socket (deep or shallow)
    1/18" inch combo wrench
    15/16" deep socket
    15/16" combo wrench
    3/4" inch socket (deep or shallow)
    3/4" inch combo wrench.
    it isnt needed but an offset 15/16" box end wrench was quite handy on the 5/8 x 7 inch

    Some years or plow models maybe slightly different so the best plan is probablly to just check all your hardware first and make sure you have the tools that you will need.

    I am a little hesitant to tell you what size tools you well need to remove the bumper and blocker beam as it may vary some from truck to truck. But FOR SURE you will need

    A good set of 1/2' drive deep sockets and matching wrenches sizes 13mm through 19mm.

    The wiring harness will require the removal of some small parts under the hood including the headlights which are the amazingly annoying 5.5mm. So while you are buying the tools buy a good

    A set of 1/4" drive metric sockets that include 5mm through 13mm including a 5.5mm.

    I thought the directions for the mounting brackets were very clear and easy to follow and it only took me a few hours to get the hardware mounted. I would advise you reinstall any plastic pieces that were taken off!! In the case of my vehicle those annoying plastic pieces and flaps dont just make it look neat under the truck, they play an important part in airflow over the vehicles cooling system. Since the radiator is about to spend most of its time blocked by a large plow it is important that airflow be as effecient as possible.

    The wiring was no problem for me, however if all you know about wiring and electronics is installing a car stereo then I would advise you consult a buddy with experience in wiring on heavy equipment. Maybe offer them some beer and a few free driveway plowings and see if they will come over and help :drinkup:.

    Before starting the installation of the wiring harness DISCONNECT YOUR BATTERY(IES).
    For real.....disconnect them....:mad:. This isnt like when it says in the manual to disconnect your battery before doing the brakes or the oil cause the company that makes the manual is covering their butt. You are about to have a long group of wires with connectors on the ends flailing around inside your engine compartment, the harness is GOING TO come in contact with all sorts of things while you get it laid out and start making your connections. The chances of you shorting out something is really high and you will likely do damage to your truck, your plow, or yourself. So.......DISCONNECT YOUR BATTERY(IES) :mad:.

    I was able to mount the relay pack on the drivers side fender well in-between the fuse panel and the ABS/ Brake booster controller. Since the fire wall is curved at that point you will need to use spacers behind the relays to get them mounted nice and neat. Also be carefull you dont mount the relay pack to close to the upper lip of the fender well or you could have a problem when replacing or trouble shooting the relays. I know fans of other plows look down on Hiniker's relay system for it size and claim better performance out of other brands "Isolation Units", however if something goes wrong you can find relays that will work on the Hiniker system at most auto parts stores instead of having to go to the Plow dealer and get a replacement "Isolation Unit". Also the relays Hiniker uses are very cost effective especially when compared to the price of a new Isolation Unit.

    I then mounted the motor solenoid on the passenger side fender well using the same mounting point as the Vacuum Pulse solenoid for one side of the solenoid and drilling a hole for the other side.

    By splitting up the location of the relay pack and the solenoid I was able to utilize the entire wiring harness without opening up the harness and changing it or having to coil a lot of slack back on itslef. I am not saying my way is the best but it ended up nice and neat and it is free from any moving or hot parts. Just make sure you lay out the harness over the engine compartment first and take your time looking it over and planning your connections, I spent the best part of an hour just planning and examing where the connections would be and how to INSTALL IT NEATLY!!!!

    The head light adapters were straight forward and easy to use. My truck required the turn signal adapter kit as well, it added two more relays to the relay pack and some more splicing into wires but without it some modern vehicles may give a flase "lamp out" indicator or may not allow the "lamp out" indicator to function. Like the main harness it was pretty straight forward, I would advise the use of electrical tape over the wire taps since the wire taps dont tend to stay water tight for more then a few months, just some cheap insurance and protection!

    The plow sits well on my leveled truck and even with the cylinder in the upper hole in the lift bracket (page 15 in the manual) I have no problem hooking up to or removing the plow. I did however find that a small block of wood under the foot of the jack makes for a smoother connection and removal of the plow, no wood under the blade of the plow is required for me. I thought about moving the cylinder to the lower hole but the upper hole will provide me with more stacking height and transport height over rough terrain. I havent tested yet but when the plow is in float I still have about 2.5 inches of down travel left in the cylinder which should allow me some slack for the plow to travel slightly below ground level allowing the plow to stay in contact with the ground when the front wheels are going over an obstacle.

    Going to complete this post and install the pics soon, need to stop for now though.

    Last edited: Nov 14, 2011
  8. scottydosnntkno

    scottydosnntkno Member
    Messages: 87

    Thought I would chime in as I'm a long time lurker and just installed a hiniker 8' heavey duty plow on my '06 F250 CC SB 6.0l

    My truck has a 6" suspension lift with 35's, so I thought it was going to be a pain to install as the dealer refused to do it. Really though it wasn't too bad.

    The main issue I ran into was that with the 6" lift the drop brackets for the sway bar mounts/steering stabilizer interfered with the truck side mount side brackets. We ended up milling off about 1/2" of material from the front of each drop bracket to make the proper clearance so everything lined up.

    The steps were fairly straight forward, and took about 3 hours start to finish for my first plow install ever.

    1. Remove the front bumper(4 bolts by the tow hooks two bolts inside fender in front of tires), disconnect fog lights and tree clips holding fog light harness, block heater cord and rubber flap to bumper.
    2. Remove the six bolts holding on the tow hooks and two other bolts holding on the blocker beam. Remove blocker beam.
    3. Put top frame strap/bolts over the frame rails and install side brackets.(this is the point where we milled off the material from the mount once we tried to install it and found out it wouldnt' fit)
    NOTE> install inner cross piece of the mount BEFORE installing the 2nd side bracket as it won't fit in after both are installed. This wasn't mentioned in the instructions, or if it was I skipped over it.
    4. Install prong portion of mount to frame.
    5. Torque all bolts. My torque wrench only went up to 175ft/lbs, so i just torqued everything to that. Some bolts called for 230 in the instructions, but anything over 150 is a diminishing return for the higher torque. The combination of lock titeing all nuts and the nylon lock nuts will keep it nice and tight.
    6. Reinstall bumper, plug in trees, plug in lights.
    7. Enjoy your new plow mount. I drove around with the plow on for two days, since it said to plow for 2 hours and retorque all the bolts. I figured driving 300 miles in the city daily driving would be enough. Checked all bolts and none had loosened.

    Wiring harness.

    I have extensive car audio background, and had no problem installing the harness in under an hour. Most of that time was spent removing the grille/headlights and reinstalling the bumper(waited til after the wiring so i could feed the plugs through it where i wanted them.

    I didn't find it necessary to disconnect the batteries, since with proper care the only exposed ends are the solenoid to battery wire, which can easily be connected to the solenoid first and then to the battery.

    For cab access I cut out the grommet where the hood latch passes through just above and to the left of the brake pedal. It is easily accessible from the engine bay and in the cab. I had the hood latch cable, strobe wiring, 0ga stereo power wire, alarm signal wires and there was still plenty of room to easily pass through the controller wire and plug. I chose to pull all the excess wire into the cab and bundle it under the dash rather than in the engine bay. I zip tied the female plug for the controller to the mount of the obdII port so its easily accessible to plug in/out, while not being visible with the controller unplugged.

    Relay pack mounted by the drives side firewall, solenoid is mounted on the passenger side between the hvac and battery, see pics below.

    Headlight adapters are straight forward. I find no issues plugging them in between the truck plug and the plugs for my HIDs on the truck. Everything switches over from truck to plow with no issues or warning lights. I also modified the plow lights to accept HIDs and my plow was a old stock '10 model with the terrible sealed beam lights.

    For the turn signals i deduced which wire was which by looking at the wiring for both sides. Both bulbs had a black(ground) wire, brown and a blue/color stripe wire. I figured the ground was black(obviously), brown would be running lights since it was the same on both sides, and the blue/stripe wire would be the turn signal for each side since they were different colors on both sides. So, my guess is your setup for a 99-07 truck would be similar. I used newer style wire tapes with the wrap around clamp and female spade end over the supplied crappy taps.

    Hooking up the power/ground under the hood was pretty simple. In the cab i tapped the red/white turn on wire to the switched power wire for my alarm rather than tapping into the truck harness wire again since it was easier. I tested the wire and only found a 2a draw on the red/white wire so i feel confident i won't have any issues with it.

    Zip tie everything up and you're good to go. Overall it was a MUCH simpler process than I thought it would be. I put dieelectric grease on every connection i could take apart both on the truck and the plow. Relays, headlights, even the controller plug in the cab. On the plow, i disconnect the headlight plugs and put some in there, as well as filled all the female spade connecters to the plugs on the pump.

    Here are some after pictures below. Note: The torched off drop bracket was the first attempt, I have since fabbed a new(machined) bracket and made new brackets to bolt the sway bar mounts to the rear of the plow frame mount so their no longer only held on by one bolt.

    Relay pack mounting point. Self tapping screws through the little metal jut out.

    Solenoid mount. Self tappers through the fender.

    Overall wiring. Nice and clean and organized. Also utilized the entire harness with no bundled up parts except for maybe 6" folded over on the left side next to the battery.

    Mount and crappy torched off sway bar drop bracket. This has since been fixed, and the sway bar is now mounted to the back of the plow frame.

    As for the prong height, you can really only adjust it 1" up/down with the stock hiniker mount. The manual calls for 10", and my frame was sitting about 15" on the low bolt holes. I made blocks out of TREX plastic 2x4s to set the plow and jack stand on when disconnecting. I chose trex so i can throw them in the bed when traveling and not worry about them getting soggy/wet from them being wet all the time. I made three 12" boxes on end(3.5" tall) with three pieces on top flat(1.5" tall) for a total of a 5" block under the whole plow. This makes the plow "think" that the prongs are mounted at 10" off the ground, since the mount receptacles have to be flat otherwise its a pain to get the plow on. With this setup I can install/remove the plow in under a minute with NO struggling. Super easy. Easier than my old boss RT3 by far.

    I ended up using the lower lift arm bolt, as when i got the plow it was in the top one, and the plow would just settle and bottom out as it touched the ground, it wouldn't "drop" like its supposed to. This would give me minimal pressure on the ground as the truck was still carrying most of the weight, and would provide no downward articulation. Switching to the lower hold now lets the plow drop fully, and gives about 5" of downward articulation based on my measurements(very technical, dropping the plow with my truck on a grassy curb, it touched the cement below the curb). So if your truck is lifted I would recommend you use the lower bolt, as the plow will still stack plenty high. I'd rather have the articulation for uneven ground and entrance ramps.

    If anyone has any questions, let me know and i'd be glad to answer them.
  9. opformitch

    opformitch Junior Member
    from Utah
    Messages: 18


    Looks good man, I am still havent loaded the pics of my install but my wiring harness is about the same as yours. Nice and neat, I would still advise someone to disconnect their batteries but wrapping the terminals in something is a safe act also. I just dont want someone to read this and start installing their plow and get hurt by not taking the simple step of pulling the battery cables off.

    I agree that really it wasnt to bad to install, if anyone out there is reading this and debating on saving the money and installing your own plow I can deffinatley say the Hiniker is not terribly difficult to do.

  10. cole22

    cole22 Senior Member
    Messages: 101

    I just cut my mounting bracket and welded a piece in the middle and welded blisters over the top and hasn't moved worked great and only took around an hour to do.