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How important is 4wd

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by zabMasonry, Oct 13, 2007.

  1. zabMasonry

    zabMasonry Senior Member
    from vt
    Messages: 101


    I sold my old truck this winter (i should say that it was a suburban) and i desperately need a new truck. I have done a little plowing in the past, (with tractor) and I would like to get into the snow removal business. problem is that i sold the burb, to pay for a new car for my old lady, so am on an extremely limited budget, I need a diesel so that i can run veg, and i cant afford diesel and 4wd.

    if i buy a diesel 1 ton and stick a ton (literally) in the back of it will i be able to plow with it or will it be a waste of money?


    -ben the newbi
  2. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    with a posi rear and flat lots with less than 6inches of snow sure.

    I would get the 4x4 and skip on the oil burner.

    A diesel and two wheel drive does not give you the capacity to run a big plow, your choices of plows is limited.
    What is the front axle weight rating?

    It can be done but you are limiting your self with a 2 wheeler.
  3. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    I ran a one ton diesel with a loaded Vbox (about 3,000 pounds). It would still take 4wd in several situations.

    I'm with SnoFarmer - skip the diesel in favor of 4wd. You can have all the power in the world, but if the wheels won't grip, the power is pointless. I sold my one ton for a 3/4 ton with a 6.0 gas. Still have plenty of power for anything I've asked of it.
  4. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    You will definately need 4 wheel drive if you are doing driveways and small lots. I agree with everyone else. Skip the diesel and get 4X4.
  5. yamaguy

    yamaguy Senior Member
    Messages: 556

    You guys missed it he is going to be running wvo (waste vegetable oil) And thats why he need the diesel. Eventhough isn't running wvo like bio diesel in that you can't run it in the winter (at least not 100%)? If that's the case just buy a gas 4x4 to last the winter then in the spring buy a diesel. Maybe then you can find a 4x4 diesel you can afford. Goodluck
  6. DeereFarmer

    DeereFarmer PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,296

    4WD would come first before anything else on a plowing truck if it was me. Once your stuck in a 2WD rig, your really stuck.
  7. tinymitymo

    tinymitymo Member
    Messages: 91


    Once you're stuck in a 4x4 you're REALLY stuck.....:eek:


    Farmer Bob???


    Can I borrow the tractor??
  8. JD Dave

    JD Dave PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,194

    That's what the old farmers use to say about 4x4 tractors.

    4wd is like a condom, I'd rather have it and not need it, then to need it and not have it. JMO
  9. tinymitymo

    tinymitymo Member
    Messages: 91

    Not denying the utillity......

    Just stating a fact....:salute:
  10. Kennedy81

    Kennedy81 Senior Member
    Messages: 125

    WVO doesn't like to run well when its cold, and it gels easy. Stick with a gasser if you can't afford a 4x4 diesel
  11. jdanforth

    jdanforth Member
    from maine
    Messages: 41

    having a 4x4 to plow with is about as important to have snow to plow. just my thoughts
  12. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    a lot of cars now have 4wd or awd.think about that for a minute. ive had a couple two wheel drive trucks before. 90% of the time they are great. that other 10 % though can really piss you off.
  13. PLOWMAN45

    PLOWMAN45 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,951

    unless your talking dually with changes and a loaded down back end but id get the 4x4 first
  14. rfed32

    rfed32 Senior Member
    Messages: 473

    id get f4wd..there have been many times where ive pulled up to one of my lots and had to throw it in 4wd just to push into the lot bc of the snow pushedd there from the roads...and if your pushin a desent size pile imo its needed
  15. PLOWMAN45

    PLOWMAN45 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,951

    hey zab if your looking for anything shoot me a pm
  16. kah68

    kah68 Senior Member
    Messages: 238

    Perhaps an OLDER 4x4 diesel!? I just bought a nice 93' dodge 4x4 cummins, the nice thing about it is that the body has been well taken care of, it's easy to fix and the Cummins (at 250,000 km) will run for a long time and is easier on fuel than the newer diesels. Also older dodges run Dana 60 fronts/70 rears and NP 205 T-Case (very durable). The straight axle is easy to fix and cheap for parts. The lack of computers and sensors is also a bonus on this rig. The weak points on these trucks, usually the body, if not taken care of will melt away like snow in the spring. Also the tranny, autos are about $1800.00-$2000.00 to rebuild and the older 5speeds (Getrag) needs to be overfilled to last. They ride rough but if you are adding a sander it will be ok, if not, redo the rear spring packs a bit softer. Oh yeah they are noisy inside but some good cab insulation (Dynamat) works wonders. One thing you will find, when the snow gets deep and heavy , you will appreciate the low end torque the cummins has to offer! It also helps that I have the identical 93' dodge with plow in my yard, too bad the body fell off it, the drive train is really good, oh well lots of good parts for the new truck!
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2007
  17. TJS 78

    TJS 78 Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    For the past 20 years the company I work for has run Ford F450 Diesel dually 2wd trucks with 9' fisher plows. We plow all commercial accounts ie. large malls, colleges & city streets. Plowing with a 2wd truck has to be operated differently than 4wd, you need to know your limitations. I don't know your situation, but if you are starting out in the business, I would not recommend 2wd. Don't misunderstand me, it can be done and has worked for us. The key ingredient with 2wd plowing is having enough ballast and the right tires for the conditions.
    Hope this helps.
  18. kah68

    kah68 Senior Member
    Messages: 238

    I Summary, it's not really important....until you need it! prsport
  19. Snowpower

    Snowpower Senior Member
    Messages: 636

    Like a diaper. I dont use 4wd often while plowing. I use it more on the roads if you can believe that. But I have used it to get unstuck, getting hung up on a snow pile or whatever, or have been plowing those pesky corners of a lot thats sloped into the fence and whatnot, where if I didn't have 4wd, Id slide sideways sloooowly down the hill backing up.....that sort of thing. Truck docks? Youll need it. Anything around a 4% or 5% grade? Or more? Youll wish you had it.

    Will you need it plowing a wal mart with a big dually weighted down? No.

    But you'll need it sooner or later. It's like shoveling snow in tennis shoes. Pretty soon you'll wish you had your work boots on.
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2007
  20. Jbowe

    Jbowe Senior Member
    Messages: 167


    I am in agreement with everyone here. I am sure you can find a really good gas 4x4 if you really look and within your budget. I just bought a 95 3/4 ton dodge with a V-10 and only 56k miles on it. Looks like it just came out of the show room. One owner and I paid 3900. with a new Boss 8-2 V plow I am in a really good piece of equipment for under 10 grand