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I could use advice too!

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by Fishead, Nov 13, 2006.

  1. Fishead

    Fishead Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    I live in SW Washington, we can get several feet of snow several times during the winter - nothing like the East Coast. However, I have a steep (18% in places) gravel driveway 1/2 mile long with a good bank for getting rid of snow on one side or another. I have been plowing with a chained up 2 WD tractor, a 4x8 sheet of plywood with a bunch of 4x4 supports bolted to the rear scraper blade trying not to get stuck for the past 8 years. I think it is time to upgrade.

    One advantage I have with my driveway is that I get to start at the top and work down. However, I have several neighbors that each have 1/4 to 1/2 mile driveways that I will be starting at the bottom and working up.

    I have two options for trucks - right now: a 1978 chev 3/4 ton with an automatic and a 1971 chev with 1 ton rear-ends, a four speed, lifted 4 inches with oversized tires. Both are 4WD, but I can chain all four tires on the 1971 and only the rear on the 1978 (I don't want to buy another front-end). So, automatic with rear chained or 4-speed with all four chained.

    I would like to get a v-plow and know of a used one for sale (Probably a Boss, maybe a Western) for $1300 without the controls. The seller says it has not been used much. Good deal? Even if I have to buy controls and...?

    Obviously, I don't know too much about snow plows. If money grew on trees (or you guys tell me not to buy the used plow), I would buy a new plow. Fisher, Boss, or something... Any ideas you have I would appreciate.

    Last edited: Nov 13, 2006
  2. bterry

    bterry Senior Member
    Messages: 183

    Me too.
    Automatic, not sure about the chains.

    Probably a good deal, my thought is any working plow for about $1200 is good, you're just paying alittle more for the V.
  3. Mick

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

    If you go with that one ton, get rid of the oversized tires. The wider the tire, the more tendency it will have to ride up on the snow. Narrower tires will bite better for more traction. If you've got a chance for a Vplow, go for it. By pushing to each side, it will put less load on the truck, therefore less resistance. It also won't "push" the truck sideways since you'll be in the middle of snow being pushed both ways. Buying a used plow is tricky, even when you know what to look for. Unless you're buying the truck the plow is on, you will likely have to buy the push plates (the things attached to the truck's frame and hook to the plow) and they are EXPENSIVE. Then, you will need to pay to have them installed unless you are real handy and know what you're doing. That's another few hundred (about $300). Check the price of the controller BEFORE you buy the plow. You say you know of a used plow "Probably a Boss, maybe a Western" ? You don't know which? Controllers are not interchangeables. "The seller says it has not been used much" - yeah, right. Look for cracked hydraulic hoses. Look at the overall condition of the paint. Look for obvious leaks. Look for bent A-frame (angle iron). Look for signs of hard use, such as bent lower part of the moldboard (technical name for the blade). How close to the springs are the spring shackles worn. Does it have a cutting edge and how much is worn off? Is the cutting edge worn to a "smile"? Is all the wiring there? Check the hydraulic fluid color, smell and level. Try to see if there is any foaming - or any indication of water in it. That'll tell you if it was changed regularly.

    $1300 might be a good deal. I sold a five year old 7.5' Fisher for $2000 and threw in the truck (seriously, he's a dealer who wanted the plow for a customer and parked the truck "out back").
  4. jcesar

    jcesar Senior Member
    from Mi
    Messages: 492

    As Mick said, Narrow tires are better. As far as which truck, I would go with the 1 ton. JMO
    As for the plow, check it over really well. Maybe read Mick's post and make some notes, so you remember what to check. Last, Remember that if you are buying used equiment, it is not new, therfore it will probably have at least one issue. Hope you do well with it, and best of luck to ya.
  5. Fishead

    Fishead Junior Member
    Messages: 9


    Wow, You guys reply quickly!

    Thanks for the information. I will check the used plow out (with notes from Mick). The current owner has never used it. He bought it from a friend and did not end up using it. He said it has the pump, valves, and quick detach, but not the switch. I am assuming he meant the controller.

    He was not sure which brand it was (there is no sticker or decals), but was taking the detach to a Boss dealer to help identify it. Once I know what it is, I will check the prices on what it needs.

    Again, thanks for the information. I am still not certain on which truck to use, but I will definitely go with tall narrow tires.
  6. Fishead

    Fishead Junior Member
    Messages: 9

    Info on used plow

    Hey all,
    I just found out which plow it is. It is a first generation Boss V-plow Conventional, with an optional dual receiver mount. Everything is there except the wiring harness and controller. I can buy the controller on ebay for $80. I will have to machine up the connection to the pickup, but with the receiver hitch setup it doesn't sound too bad.

    I will be using Mick's list of things to check, but what do you think of that plow in general?

    Thanks again.
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2006