Pain in the xxx<WESTEN UNI>dodge

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snate

Junior Member
Location
Toronto, Canada
Pain in the ass<WESTEN UNI>dodge

Finally got the western 8' plow on my 2002 dodge quad 1500.
The shop managed to make a mount for it, that was easy. After about 7 wiring harnesses and twenty opinions it seems to work ok. My new problem is that over every bump that I go over the mount smashes the ground. It even hits when I go into my driveway. Since it's only about 5-7" off the ground, is there any way to raise the ground clearance without putting on huge tires,
It's so low that I can't use them anyways. Someone told me to adjust the torsion bars. Will this make me gain an inch?
Any input would be greatly appreciated, Thanks.
 

Snoworks

Senior Member
Location
Glenview
snate - Something sound funky about the install. Make sure the dealer did not use the frame extenders. These are used when a truck sits to far off the ground for the plow to work properly. It happened to me on my first plow purchase!

You can adjust the torsion bars and get more than a inch of lift out of front suspension. Do a search on torsion bars, a whole bunch of threads will come up, to point you in the right direction.

CGB
 
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snate

snate

Junior Member
Location
Toronto, Canada
Thanks, I think he did use frame extenders because my truck bumper sits so low. Its the new body style. They even had to cut away some of the lower bumper. I will definately do a search for torsion bar adjustment. If I can gain 1" it will help.
 

chtucker

Senior Member
How much does the truck sag with the plow raised? That would be my first concern. Secondly, when the "constructed" the mount they probably were not concerned about ground clearance, the vehicle specific mount would have probably helped with that. Thirdly, make sure your tires are at their maximum pressure, this will allow for less squish when hitting a bump.


Howard
 

RAZOR

Senior Member
Location
Ontario, Canada
I put a set of Timbrems in last year and they helped the front-end from sagging. I had a hard time trying to find Timbrems in the Toronto area but finaly found them just north of the city. Is it possible that the dealer used the wrong mount for your truck. It might be a good idea to take the truck back to the plow dealer and tell him your problem and see if they will do any thing for you.

Razor
 

plowking35

2000 Club Member
Location
SE CT
The unimount is supposed to be between 9-11" off the pavement. Since you are alot lower than that, your mounting bracket is the problem. My guess is that is why western doesnt offer a unimount for that application. Just maybe they know what they are doing. You will need to raise that mounting location for lift the truck to compensate for your/ fabricators glaring oversight.
This the exact reason that people who dont have a clear understanding of what they are doing should leave things alone.
that truck shouldnt have a 8' plow to begin with and the obvious hack job your installer did for you is just compounding the problem. Take that plow off, and get the right plow for your application. Something or worse yet someone will end up getting hurt. At the very least I am sure you dont want to ruin that expensive new truck.
Dino
 

ceaman

Senior Member
Location
Central Indiana
The 2002 Ram 1500 was not made for any type of plow. Dodge changed to the independent suspension on this truck and it is too light weight for the blade. Accordiing to an engineer at DC the frame rail on this truck is thinner in places to absorb a impact (such as a unibody car is) and that this frame.... Although hydroformed and stiffer.... It has planned failure points in its design.

A plow on this truck "might" fold up the frame under normal plowing conditions. My advicce would be to "be careful"!!!

In any event to solve the problem of the framework being too low. Notch the bumper further and bring the A frame of the plow to level. You are also changing the angle of attack on the plow cutting edge which might cause it to not trip as easily (or too easy). Increase spring tension to handle the added weight (or add timberens) and increase your insurance limits.
 

plowking35

2000 Club Member
Location
SE CT
If your ins. co gets wind of the fact that damage was caused by a improperly installed snow plow, you can kiss the claim good bye, oh and guess what DC will still want their $500.00 a month payment. That is alot of money to spend on a truck with a pretzelled front clip. Do the right thing and either get a truck that was designed for the purpose of plowing, or at least the right snow plow assembly. perhaps snowway will have a unit that would work.
Dino
 

Snoworks

Senior Member
Location
Glenview
When I first posted on this thread was wondering why plow would be so low even with the extenders. Although I am not a Dodge enthusiast, I loved the way the older style truck sat. It had lots of clearance between the tires, like a stock body lift. Wonder why they changed the design.

One thing that I can't swallow, is that it wont plow well, though. I see a lot of 1500's with plows on them, some even on new car lots.

CGB
 

Eager Beaver

Senior Member
Another problem you may have is ballast in the rear. When the plows on try to compensate for the weight by putting weight (or ballast in the rear of the truck behind the rear wheels. This will help pull the front of the truck up. When my 2000 Ford F250 had a plow attached I had the same problems you are having with the UNIMount. I put Timermans on and then by adding ballast in the rear it helped the problem. Just the weight in the rear will give you more clearance.
Warning!! Watch for curves,sidewalks and the parking blocks when you pull up. The Unimounts set so low you will definately hit some of the higher ones if you are not careful and believe me it will wake you up. Thats even without the plow on.
 

plowking35

2000 Club Member
Location
SE CT
I have one of the lowest sitting trucks out there. GM built the cab and chassis one tons very low to the ground, add to that the unit mount sits low, plus the bottom of the a frame of the plow hangs lower still. Even with all that the plow rarely bottoms when I push back over curbs, and that is the only place it does slightly scrape at times.
I never said that the Ram 1/2 ton wont plow well, however, that doesnt mean it should be plowed with. the drivetrain most likely is capable, but as evidenced from the inability to get the correct mounting locations, it wasnt meant to have a western unimount plow. There maybe other plows avaiable that will work better. Whats more the truck is a quad cab, adding further weight to the front end. You can add all the stiffeners, load boosters and ballast in the rear, and that wont help the height of the ride in stock form,or the axel capacity in the front, which I believe when the plow is mounted is grossly over weight.
To increase ride height, he will need lift, lift is achieved in its most basic form from tire height. Either a body lift or full suspension lift of 2-3" will be needed to allow for larger tires, to get the correct height needed for the western plow. IMO it would be more cost effective to buy the correct plow for the truck.
Dino
 
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snate

snate

Junior Member
Location
Toronto, Canada
Thanks for the advice, The welding shop have been mounting plows for years, so I can assume they know what they are doing.
I'm sure they knew that an 8' or any plow was not meant for that truck. They were willing to take on the task, problem is there is no mount for that truck period. So since I had already purchased it, and the plow, I'm stuck with what I got. It cannot be mounted any higher because I will be cutting my upper bumper.
I noticed that there is a rubber stopper that makes contact with the lower control arm when there is a lot of weight on the truck.
With no load it sits about 4" above the arm. I noticed that it made contact on the arm, probably while hitting a bump. I can see the dirt has rubbed off the lower arm. Even with the plow up there is still a couple of inches clearance, so it has to be hitting while driving. Can I shove something like more rubber between the bushing and arm to keep my truck from bottoming out over a bump? Does anyone know about torsion bars and mabey gaining an inch?
 

SDlawndawg

Senior Member
Not sure about torsion bar helping you out. My friend lifted the front of his 89' chevy half-ton by cranking the torsion bar. It got him about 2". But the handling can be greatly affected by this adjustment. If adjusted too far, your truck will tend to lift the inside tire going around a curve. You could put a 2-3" body lift on and then you could raise your front bumper up 2-3". A suspension lift is a possibility but is expensive and complicated to install assuming you have independent suspension up front. You might get away with installing only new coils(assuming that is what you have) to raise the front 1-2". And then make a trip to the alignment shop.

The best solution would be to sell the plow and purchase the appropriate plow for your dodge. It would be much easier on your truck especially since the truck is new.
 

finnegan

Senior Member
Location
hamburg,ny
dodge dissers

snate don't listen to people who don't know anything about your truck,your dodge has the exact same suspension as a f-150 has and you can throw any kind of plow on those trucks too,within reason of course.i work for the largest oem part supplier of drivetrain parts in the world and have talked with the very same engineers who designed the 2002 1500,your frame is so strong because of the hydroforming that weaker points were developed to protect you and other people in an accident,several manufacturers have full plow setups for this truckand more will follow,there is generally more intrest in a 2500 for plowing so many plow companys were late to the table with offerings for your truck,by the way i run an 8 ft pro-plow on my 2002 1500,if you need pics or any help e-mail me.-and yes you can raise your torsion bars but make sure you get an alignment done after--next year all you'll see is 1500's running around with plows on them...
 

Mike 97 SS

Banned
Location
U.S.A.
That truck wasnt made to plow with. Does it have a Snow Plow Prep Package on it or that wasnt an option on that particular truck? Im assuming it wasnt an option. Secondly, an 8ft plow is way too heavy for a 1500 series in my oppinion. Lastly, Western Uni Mounts hang low on all trucks, or should i say the plow frame is longer than say a Fisher and therefor should be on trucks with much more clearance to begin with, such as a 250/2500 or 350/3500. Take it off and look into a lighter snowplow if you *must* plow with this truck. Mike
 

plowking35

2000 Club Member
Location
SE CT
The F-150 wasnt meant to have a 8' pro plow mounted on it either.
the reason the plow shop put the plow on this truck is because ou payed them to do so. That doesnt mean they should have. In fact they are open to litigation when this whole fiasco turns into a lawsuit after some one gets hurt. TAKE THE PLOW OFF THAT TRUCK ASAP
Get a snow way unit, or a light duty system from a reputable company installed by a competant installer.
No matter what you do to that front end it will never withstand the abuse and toture to forcing it to endure.
Dino
 

ceaman

Senior Member
Location
Central Indiana
I am not a dodge disser :nono:

For your info I have a 2003 Dodge Ram 2500 Quad with the New Hemi. (That makes 5 new DC products in 2 years) :cool:

I personally have an opinion based upon my needs out of a new pickup. I need a plow truck with a warranty so if there is a defect in the truck it is covered. I need something to pull my lawncare equipment, haul loads of stone,salt, dirt or sand. I pay $34,000 for a product and I put it to work... I am rough on my equipment but only use it for its intended purpose. I cut down no trees with the hedge trimmers and dont trim bushes with my string trimmer.... sure I could try.... but at what sacrifice.... What will the quality of the results be? :confused:

I express my opinion as we all do on this site and shall continue to do so. I would also like to go on the record as saying "I am in agreement with Dino."
 
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