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ranger or f150, which should I get a plow for? Long post

Discussion in 'Residential Snow Removal' started by Tom in PA, Feb 17, 2007.

  1. Tom in PA

    Tom in PA Junior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 8


    Until today I plowed my driveway with an old scout with an manual angle plow. Well today the pressure plate bit the dust and it's just to rough a truck to put any money into (If anyone is interested in it cheap, let me know;-) Anyway...I have a 2000 Ranger, 4.0, AT, limited slip rear, heavy springs, trans cooler, etc. I also have a 2004 F-150 5.4, AT, Limited slip, etc. I didn't go for the heavier front spring plowing package because I didn't think I'd be putting a plow on it and didn't want to sacrifice the ride quality.

    Now I'm considering a plow for one of the trucks. I'd just be doing my driveway which is fairly long, half paved, half unpaved. It's about 150 ft long and then there is about a 70 by 20 or so area in front of the garage.

    I was going to get a plow for the Ranger since it it smaller and easier to maneuver in some of the areas of the drive where we park, etc. I was also considering this truck because it is already paid for and out of warranty so I don't have to worry about warranty issues. My concern is will this be heavy enough to do what I need. The scout had a tendency to get stuck with wet, heavy snows although the tires were shot on it.

    I could get a 7'4" suburbanite and the mounts for the ranger and if I don't like it, then get the mounts for the F-150. I've never seen one in person so I'm concerned about it being up to the task. I tend to be hard on equipment so I was considering a heavier plow but I don't think they are offered for the ranger.

    Should I have any fear of airbags deploying on either truck?
    Will the ranger be heavy enough to do what I need?
    Is the Suburbanite well built? I look at the plows they sell at Sam's club and they make me nervous.
    Without the heavier spring package, will Ford give me warranty hassles if they see the plow mounts on the truck if I take it in for a non plowing related issue?

    Any thoughts or suggestions are certainly welcome.


  2. jkitterman

    jkitterman Senior Member
    Messages: 140

    Are you driving both trucks or are you going to leave the plow truck at home? If you are planning on just leaving the Ranger at home with the plow, you can add a bunch of ballast for more traction. Have you tried using the Western Plow selector for those vehicles. I think the F150 only gets a Suburbanite anyways.
  3. Tom in PA

    Tom in PA Junior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 8

    Without the heavier front springs it would only qualify for the suburbanite, with the heavier springs it could handle a midweight. I'll have to check the actual rating to make sure which I have.

    I finally found the search button and realize the snoway is also a good option. They actually have a dealer very close to me. The cost may be an issue though, for how often I'd use the plow.

    The ranger is usually the stay at home truck.

  4. Pearcelawn

    Pearcelawn Senior Member
    Messages: 368

    I plow commercially with my '01 Ranger Edge and a 22 series Sno Way. I absolutely love it and recommend the setup!!! If you are not doing a lot of plowing it will last forever and will resell with the truck when you decide to give it up.
  5. ThisIsMe

    ThisIsMe Senior Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 745

    Assuming both are 4x4 I would vote for the Ranger. The Suburbanite, as was mentioned,would do the trick. The Fisher or Western version, depending on which dealer is closer. If not something along those lines.
  6. Tom in PA

    Tom in PA Junior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 8

    After doing A LOT of reading of old posts last night, it seems that the ranger should do a good job and the above votes of confidence confirm this:)

    From looking at the Western Surburbanite and the Fisher Homesteader, it is fairly obvious they are based on the same setup. Is the sno-way similar does it use metal trip springs instead of the rubber ones used on the above setups? Are any of the quit attatch provisions better/worse than the others? I'm trying to figure out which is the better setup. They all have the "power down" option. I don't want to start flames of who makes the best plow, just looking for the differences.

    Does anyone know the difference between the ST series and the 22 series plows? The 22 is taller and lighter (both good things in my book) but has a thinner cutting edge, less vertical ribs and a smaller lift cylinder. Is this through improved engineering or is it the lighter duty of the two plows?

    Thanks a bunch for the input!

  7. Proscapez LLC

    Proscapez LLC Senior Member
    Messages: 293

    I would give the ranger a try!
    For the plow I would contact Tom obrien (His username on here is Toby4492) and see if you can buy a Snoway MT from him. I think there close out deal is around $3,000.00.
    But you cant get it from the dealer only thru the factory.
  8. ynot_5_0

    ynot_5_0 Member
    Messages: 46

    Ranger. I had a 6'8'' Blizzard on a '04 Ranger FX4 Level II with the 4.0 Liter AT. This truck handled the plow and the snow great. The FX4 Level II comes with heavier shock absorbers and 31" BFGs. As long as you have the 4.0 you will have no problems pushing the snow. 4.10 gears help a lot, but not at the gas pumps as I'm sure you already know. I believe Blizzard makes a 7'2'' plow that will go on this truck also, but it was not out when I bought the other. I had mine installed for $2800.00.
  9. ThisIsMe

    ThisIsMe Senior Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 745

    No improved technology, just lighter duty on the ST and the 22. Pretty sure both the ST and the 22 metal trip springs. The Sub / Home are the only ones I believe that use rubber.

    Ask 10 different people wich quick attach they like best and I am sure you would get 10 different answers. They are all pretty much well designed, and each one has it fans I am sure.

    If by power down, you mean down pressure. Sno-way is the only plow that offers that. Some prefer a heavier less complicated heavier plow over the added complexity of the down pressure. To each their own.

    In hearing your thinking, you might want to look at the Blizzard LT series. About as heavy of a plow as you would want on the Ranger, but an option to look at. Plus it might be the least expensive of the plows you have looked at so far. You might want to look at what dealers are near by you, a big selling point.

    If the Ranger is not going to be on the road that much, and mostly for driveway work, I would think plow weight would be low on the list.
  10. Tom in PA

    Tom in PA Junior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 8

    Ahh, I see. I was reading the "locked down" feature on the surburbanite to mean it exerted downward force. It only means the plow is not in float mode. It locks where you leave off the button.

    I haven't looked at the blizzards yet. I'll check to see if they have a dealer nearby. It is unlikely the truck will travel very far with the blade on. I'll have to check with my ins company to get their thougths on traveling to do my mom's place for the deeper snows.

    I've found that I have a western and a sno-way dealer fairly close by. That is a good thing. I'll have to look into how long they've been in business and how long they've been dealers for those products. A dealer doesn't do you much good if they're out of business or not carrying that product a year from now.

    I dug through some of the online manuals and yes the ST and the 22 both have metal trip springs. I'm still not sure which of the two I would be more interested in. I assume the added height of the 22 would be a good thing, but it is a physically larger (taller) plow that weighs less than the ST which makes me believe it may be lighter duty. I may need to have Sno-way clarify the differences between the two.

    I'd like to thank everyone that has contributed thus far. You guys are great.

  11. Tom in PA

    Tom in PA Junior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 8


    One other question. Which mounting system provides the best ground clearance when the plow is not in use. I see the homesteader has removable brackets. I haven't been out recently but there is a chance the truck will again see some off road time in the future.

    Thanks again,

  12. Tom in PA

    Tom in PA Junior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 8

    It looks like I can pick up a Western Suburbanite that is 2 yrs old for 1500 including the mount for the truck- it came off a ranger as well. Is it really worth the extra cash to step up to a new Snow-way? I'd really like the down pressure option but will I see that big of a difference to justify the price. This is only for private use, so I won't be making any money off of it. This seems like a fairly reasonable price to me for the Western.


  13. ohnomrbill

    ohnomrbill Junior Member
    Messages: 17

    For what it's worth .... I've had a Fisher Homesteader on a 2000 S-10 for 3 seasons now and it seems to work fine. Like you I only do my own drive which is 600' -- 1/2 paved - 1/2 gravel/stone with a good hill near the road. I bought the plow on the truck used but quotes for install were all $3000 or more around here (Conn.) I did have to replace the motor earlier this winter as it wouldn't raise or angle so hoping that's not a sign of poor reliability for the future. Other than that it's worked as good as the steel plow I had before it for my use.
  14. Tommy10plows

    Tommy10plows Senior Member
    Messages: 345

    Don't spend the money Instead,

    Fix the Scout. A clutch is cheap, and you can park it when the spring comes without worry as to insurance. You don't say if the Ranger and 150 are four wheel drive. But why go through that, just go to NAPA, get you a clutch, pressure plate and throw out bearing for the Scout. Pull the flywheel and have it machined and trued for about $30 and put it all back together for the next ten years.
  15. Tom in PA

    Tom in PA Junior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 8

    Well, the scout is pretty dead. The only thing holding the body on is gravity:eek: The frame will soon be too shot to plow any more, etc. It's just not worth fixing to me any longer. It literally leaves a trail of parts that I find in the spring when the snow melts. I'm putting it up for sale for 350 with the plow.

    I did end up buying the surburbanite and picked it up Friday night. It is in VERY nice condition, virtually new.

    I've got to source some of the bolts that hold the mount to the frame, they have handles attatched to them to reach inside the frame and get them through the holes. It looks like everything else should plug right in (it came off another ranger so I'm in). If anyone has a source for these bolts let me know. I've sent emails out to a couple western dealers.

    Thanks for all the help guys!!!!

  16. itsgottobegreen

    itsgottobegreen PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,351

    Any western dealer will have about 1000 of those handles nuts just laying around. Since most ford kits come with 8 hand nuts and they only need 4 to install.

    If u need any help installing it let me know. I just installed one on 07 ranger like a month ago. Its a piece of cake.
  17. you'll like the ranger alot!!! I have an '02 FX4 level 2 with a 6' 8'' sno-way and the truck handles it pretty well.
  18. SnowPro93

    SnowPro93 Senior Member
    Messages: 375

    From what i've heard, alot of people like the Curtis Home Pro's....lightweight, real nice plow. I'd see how close a dealer is to you and check that out as well. Good Luck.
  19. Tom in PA

    Tom in PA Junior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 8

    Ok, feedback time. I got the plow on this weekend. We got over a foot of snow. The down speed is too quick currently, I'll have to work on that. Otherwise it works great! I wish it lifted a bit higher but I was able to stack the snow fairly high without it. The Ranger worked flawlessly, much better than I anticipated. That was even without the recommended conterweight in the bed. I'd highly recommend the combination.

    THANK YOU to everyone for helping me sort out my options!! I would have liked to have gotten a Sno Way but I found the Surburbanite for a very good price in nearly new condition. The gentleman I bought it from was a super nice guy as well. I have no regrets.

    Thanks again:waving:

  20. glad to hear all your equipment worked out great (especially the ranger!).