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Never Plowed, any tips would be helpful.

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by Mr.Finch, Dec 23, 2007.

  1. Mr.Finch

    Mr.Finch Junior Member
    Messages: 26

    Hello everyone :waving: I have never really driven a plow before, and I was hoping for some good tips. The closest I have come to plowing was helping a friend remove his western last spring.
    My first question is if I got a good deal. I bought a 1996 f150 5.0 5spd 4x4, with a new clutch, oil pump, and pan, I have about $3500 into the truck, I may buy the 7.5ft meyer EZ mount for it tomorow for $800. is this a decent price for a used plow truck?
    Soo many Questions soo little time
    second thing is, I am looking at mostly doing friends driveways, do I still need to buy special insurance, and how do I determine the charge?
    I here you guys mention Timbrens, what exactly are those, do they just help raise the front end when the plow is on, do they need to come off at the end of the season?
    Lastly, the plow I may be getting is a 7.5ft meyer ez mount, the mount and control are already on the truck, so I just need the plow, but are these things good plows, what should I look for when I go to buy it?

    Well, sorry for soo many questions, I will get off now and let you guys respond, thanks for the help.
  2. ahoron

    ahoron Senior Member
    from here
    Messages: 422

    hello welcome to plowsite. insurance you need even if its your friends drive. price for truck don't know, how many miles? what shape is it in? Timbrens replace the stock bump stops on the front control arms to keep the truck from sagging in the front. I would not plow without them on my 1500, they work. How long and wide are the driveways?
  3. Mr.Finch

    Mr.Finch Junior Member
    Messages: 26

    Thanks for the quick reply, I think I will like this site.

    Are the timbrens available at any parts store? They must make for a rough ride.

    most of the drives are about 2 cars wide and between 1.5 to 2 care lengths deep.

    The truck is in almost mint cond, there is a little but of rust on the rear fenders (typical for the older models), runs GREAT! loaded, and has the remote for the plow instead of the switches (a friend made a big deal about the remote, I thouht they were pretty comon). I normally don't pay more than 1500 for my trucks, but they were no newer than 1990, and none had 4x4 or a plow.

    IF it makes a difference for pricing, I am in northern illinois right on the college.
    Thanks again for your help.
    p.s. Do you ussualy leave the salting to the customer?
  4. Mr.Finch

    Mr.Finch Junior Member
    Messages: 26

    Almost forgot, how easy to the timbrens install (from what you describe, they are just a taller than stock bumper right?). Do they come in different sizes? Do you normally remove them at the end of season so you get a smoother ride?
  5. jjklongisland

    jjklongisland Senior Member
    Messages: 470

    As far as plowing driveways, if you never plowed snow before I suggest practicing plowing on your street or your own driveway first before attempting accounts... It isnt rocket science but the more you do it the better you will know the limits of your truck. That is the key in my opinion. What makes a good operator is someone that know where his truck and or plows begins and ends... Also the harder you are on your equipment the more often you have to fix it. Meyer makes a good all around plow. I use one, parts are readily available and relatively inexpensive compared to some other models. Everyone has there favorite brand but for the price you cant beet a used Meyer. Try and carry spare plow parts. Its not will it break, its when will it break. There are tons of posts all over this forum for helpful plow tips. Reading them will the best advice I can give you. Without knowing the condition of the truck and plow and what type of pump is on the plow, controller, etc it is hard to tell if you got a good deal. Remember its plow season so prices of used plows are always going to be more expensive now than in the offseason. As long as pay attention, maintain your equipment, and stay awake, you should do fine. Definately check out the Ford section in the Forum. I have never owned a Ford so I couldnt tell you the best advice regarding the Timbrens, etc. I do know that with a 1/2 ton pick up a plow has a lot of weight and a Timbrens will help. I am sure you should put ballast (weight) in your bed. Ask the Ford guys what the amount should be (I am sure the question has allready been answered somewhere in the forum). I hope this helped a little and good luck...
  6. sechracer

    sechracer Senior Member
    Messages: 478

    $800 is not too bad if the plow is in decent condition (no major defects). As for the Timbrens, from what I am told, they usually take 30 - 60 min to install. You need commercial insurance if you plan on getting paid for your services. That also depends on if you are just going to be plowing friends and family or if you plan on getting actual accounts.

    As for experiance, just like said before, know your truck. know how long it is and where it begins and ends. to help you learn it, you could have the plow up and GENTLY pull up to a tree until you touch it. This would show you how close it looks when looking over the plow. Then you could practice trying to get close and dropping the blade without hitting the tree...... Same idea for backing up. I do not reccomend plowing on the street, as in some places, you can get alot of crap from the local authorities for it if someone complains.
  7. RedTun

    RedTun Junior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 6

    I am also very new to plowing. Not going to do it commerically but I live on a private road and my neighbor that owns an excavating company who has maintained the road for 16 yrs can use a break.

    My truck was sagging and with help from others on this site I boutgh a set of timbrens last week (arriving tomorrow). I found a good deal at www.truckspring.com. Their website allows you to walk through your make/model/year to get the right set. After shipping, <$200.

    Good luck!
  8. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,756

    This was my first year plowing as well. When the first storm came, it was really heavy which made the plowing harder and me nervouse. But after about the 3rd house, I started to get the hang of it. And now, after being out for 5 storms, I've almost become a pro at it. Just always be looking in your mirrors, don't hit any mail boxes, and watch for ditches on the side of driveways out in the country. So, basically, just practice as much as possible, and don't fret at first, because you'll get the hang of it in no time.
  9. MileHigh

    MileHigh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,827

    I bought my timbrens from truckspring.com. You punch in your trucks info and they match up a set for you. Mine cost 179$ including shipping for the front ones, and only took about 5 business days to recieve. This product works wonders. I like the way they make my truck handle; much less body roll when turning, you can go over huge dips and not have to worry about scraping your plow mount, and with the plow on, man o man, it's almost like it's not even there. So I will leave mine on in the off season for sure. Timbrens are important(probaly the best upgrade for the price you can make for your truck) but ballast weight in the back is just as important. For your meyer I would run 500# of ballast weight behind your rear axle and your tanking.

    98 F-150 4x4 w/timbrens
    Meyer ST 7.5
  10. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    Do you live up near Brockport with about 6 houses on the road?
  11. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    LOL! dude, thats a serious case of over-confidence right there.:rolleyes:

    lets just say that after a couple of consecutive drives, the plowing will feel more comfortable and less... drop blade, pull forward, slow down and lift blade, hit pile, raise blade and reverse, shake blade before plow gets back onto ground........etc.

    CARDOCTOR PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,312

    i can smell the clutch burning from my computer

  13. bribrius

    bribrius PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    don't do it unless you need too.
    money isnt that great when factoring in wear and tear on vehicle, time, headache factor.
    plowing is for people that don't want to work a regular job in the winter, people that do it for kicks and extra money(like me i guess), people that really need the money even if they have to spend the weekend putting in a new tranny to get it.
    i have actually limited how much plowing i do purposley. There are other ways to make a buck. weigh it out for yourself.
  14. Brant'sLawnCare

    Brant'sLawnCare PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,756

    Oh, come on. I'm not being over confident. I'm just saying I went from worrying about plowing to having a feeling for doing it right. Know what I mean?
  15. Mr.Finch

    Mr.Finch Junior Member
    Messages: 26

    Thanks for the help so far. I currently have a class c license and drive a water delivery truck (about the size of a ups truck) So I am pretty confident in my ability to determine were the truck and plow starts and ends.

    I just got back from buying the truck. That was some trip to start, it turns out the PO did not finish the wiring for the headlights, so I drove atleast 50 miles with the plow just an inch above the ground and my pass headlight barely peaking over it:).

    Does any one have a wiring diagram for these plows, or know were to find it, it has 6 plug connectors for each light (if that makes a difference). I will be skimming over the web for it in the meantime.

    The mounts for the shoes were cut off the plow, do they realy do anything except hold the plow up when not in use? he threw the new shoes in for no cost.

    lastly, he gave me an open box of air bag assists (the ones you put inside the coil spring) Does anyone know if these are any good and if I even have the right set for this truck. I found a few numbers on the box, it is a "coil-rite" Air helper part #4102?
    Thanks again for your help, I will be looking over the web, but if someone knows anything about these that would realy help. Thanks again.
  16. Mr.Finch

    Mr.Finch Junior Member
    Messages: 26

    by the way, the plow is a stl-7.5 and the motor is an e-60. someone told me that meyer had a problem with the pumps when they mounted them sideways like mine, is this true?
  17. GreenManEnvy

    GreenManEnvy Senior Member
    Messages: 123

    You want to use plow shoes on gravel to keep the plow from scooping in too deeply.