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Need compact crew cab replacement for S10 Blazer

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by stanz, Mar 18, 2014.

  1. stanz

    stanz Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    I've been using an S10/S15 Blazer with an old 6'6" cable operated Western Plow for the last four years and I'm looking for a replacement. I'll use the S10 until it dies but I'm shopping for a compact crew cab pickup.

    Here's my old thread:


    It needs to be a compact pickup because the Western is the perfect size for my needs. I've plowed with two Dodge pickups, F150, an Explorer, and two S10/S15 two door rigs.

    I don't have much of a budget, around $8k, so I'm looking at trucks in the 2000-2005 year ranges. I've narrowed it down to three choices, yeah, I realize I'll need to figure out a mount for any of them since my setup is from the 1980s.

    S10 Crew Cab - Pretty close to what I have now but a bit longer and harder to find than the others.

    Ford Sport Trac - I know they eat ball joints, I experienced that first hand.

    Dodge Dakota Quad Cab - I've heard their transmissions aren't that strong.

    Whichever I choose will get a set of Timbrens since none of them are meant to plow.

    Any input would be appreciated.
  2. leolkfrm

    leolkfrm PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,978

    the 2015 Colorado look sharp..treat yourself to a new modern plow too
  3. stanz

    stanz Junior Member
    Messages: 20


    My budget is around $8k, plus, the Colorado isn't available until the fall of 2014.
  4. derekbroerse

    derekbroerse 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,377

    Just throwin' it out there, an $8k budget would buy a really really mint low mileage 83-94 style S truck from down south and leave half the budget to cover any repairs or upgrades you'd like. Your existing plow will still bolt on. You are completely familiar with the truck and maintenance/repairs on it already, and have the bonus of being able to keep the old truck for parts.

    ps I have a friend who recently got rid of a 2000 Dakota sport because the tranny died and it was thousands to fix... he traded it in on a one year old F150 short crewcab... so yes there is potential merit to the claim of bad trannies in the dodges. His body didn't look bad either, but was really rotten underneath fender flares etc. He traded it in at the dealership but it showed up at a local junkyard shortly after lol
  5. stanz

    stanz Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    I'm increasing the budget to 10k and I added Colorado to the mix. I need the crew cab, that's why I'm moving away from the series 1 S10s. The blazer just doesn't work, I need the open bed to haul snowblowers and such. I have a trailer for big loads
  6. Flawless440

    Flawless440 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,543

    Can't beleave there are still cable plows out there... Thats what i started with in 01... So many problems.. Turned me off of western real bad..
    9' Ultra Mount on my F450 has been a great plow
  7. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH PlowSite.com Addict
    from pa
    Messages: 1,143

    !0k budget? Heck, you shouldn't have any problem finding a clean truck AND a "better" plow to boot.
  8. adksnowo

    adksnowo Senior Member
    Messages: 370

    I think it is going to be pretty difficult to adapt an old "hard mount" cable operated plow to a newer truck, especially a newer compact truck. BTW I still run a 2002 Dakota, uses same tranny as 1/2 ton Dodge truck, and no I would not recommend the Dakota as it has nickel & dimed me to death (and generally soured me on anything Chrysler!). I agree on finding an S-10 from down south, the GM Colorado & Canyon have a pretty spotty reliability record, by the end of the S-10 model run they had things down pretty well.
  9. stanz

    stanz Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    So, I've been shopping and decent trucks are hard to find or expensive. The S10s in the 6-7K range all have issues that the sellers haven't bothered fixing yet. I went to test drive a 2003 S10 Crew Cab with 123K miles and found the steering had 15 degrees of play in it. I turned around and left. That's what sells for $6500 around here. S10s with less than 100K miles are selling for over $10,000, about the same as newer Colorados with the same miles.

    I think I'm just going to keep the plow on the Blazer until it dies. Then I'll just buy another first generation Blazer and stick the plow on it. That opens up more choices for my pickup, like the Sport Trac. I looked at one today and it's much nicer and has more room than the S10. I just happened to be at a Ford dealer when a couple brought theirs in on trade for an F150. I'm trying to talk them into selling it to me instead of sending it to the auction. Most dealers around here don't keep vehicles with over 100k on them, but this truck looked clean and well cared for.

    I have driven a Colorado and it's the best of the bunch of crew cabs, but good ones are going for $11,000 and up.
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2014
  10. ScubaSteve728

    ScubaSteve728 Senior Member
    Messages: 499

    stay away from the sport trac awful trucks
    i would get a bronco or a blazer myself if i were you
  11. stanz

    stanz Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    Bronco and Blazer don't have pickup beds and there aren't any Broncos from this century, I'm looking for a newer crew cab truck.
  12. Stik208

    Stik208 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,319

    I vote for a Colorado, if I wasn't so hard headed I would still have mine. I had an 05 crew cab with a 7.6 fisher ht. It held the plow well with the t bars turned up.
  13. cda817

    cda817 Senior Member
    Messages: 284

    I have a '01 Sport Trac for our sidewalk guys. If it has the 4.0 they run forever, I have 160k on mine and runs like a champ. I had a '96 ranger with the 4.0 before this and it had 225k on it when we got rid of it and the guy still drives it.

    We don't have a plow on ours but I'm sure it would handle a small one fine as long as you aren't doing a ton of work with it.

    We get 4 toro single stages in the back shovels and a couple of bags of salt and it works great, the guys are comfortable and its easy to get the blowers in and out. On a big storm we throw a few toro 8/22 two stages in there and they are perfect.
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2014
  14. stanz

    stanz Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    If the financing goes through I'll have a 2004 Explorer Sport Trac in my driveway in a few days. It was in too nice a shape to pass up. Hubs and bearings replaced 30k miles ago, new ball joints, some parts still have Ford tags on them.

    1)The ride is the best of the three types of crew cabs I tested; S10/Sonoma, Colorado/Canyon, Explorer.
    2) Interior is the roomiest and most comfortable of the three.
    3) The guy did more than the required maintenance.
    4) Locking tonneau cover, maintenance-free cargo box, power rear window
    5) Overall build quality "feels" better in the Ford

    I know the Ford eats ball joints and hubs, I've experienced it first hand. Still, the overall package fits well for my needs, comfortable for the family and still usable as a small pickup.

    No, it won't work as a plow truck but old Blazers are cheap and my current one has at least three more seasons left in it. It actually has fewer miles than the Explorer.