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Tired of snowblowing:Thinkin Curtis Plow on my 01 Cherokee: Basic questions:

Discussion in 'Jeeps' started by xrdirthead, Mar 30, 2006.

  1. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

    I am thinking of adding a Curtis snow plow to the front of my 2001 Jeep Cherokee. Any advice for a newbie would be appreciated. Emails welcome: I think members should have access to it. Thanks in advance.
    Ed Kenney

    The Curtis dealer is right up the street and the factory is only an hour from my home in Avon, MA.

    This is the model I was looking at:
    1SP7 - 7' HOME-PRO 3000 Series Plow Package

    I'm not sure of what control to pick:
    I'm guessing the joy stick or the finger tip control. The joy stick looks kind of large for my underdash mounting area but might be easier to use then having two finger tip controls.
    Any advice would be apprecitated.

    From what I have read I should add Timbrens up front to help keep it from bottoming out and I'm guessing I'll need some weight in the back to offset the plow? The guy I called said he had a water bladder with some type of anti-freeze I could use to help weight the rear end. I've read people like to use Rubbermaid totes filled with sand too. Again more to think about.

    My shocks are the originals and still feel fine. (at least on the highway) The Jeep is just used up and down the highway to get me to work not off road at all but was wondering if after market shocks might help.

    My tires are brand new Good Year "Forteras." The specs show them to perform well in the snow so I think I'm all set there. http://www.goodyearfortera.com/tripletred/index.html
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2006
  2. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    I run about 200lbs of ballast in my 98, seems to work out OK.

    From what I hear Timbrens on the front make the ride really stiff, I have a set of Airlift 1000 airbags on the front of mine and it still rides like stock. There is a little modification that has to be done to run the bags on the 96+ Cherokees but nothing too crazy.
  3. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60


    I think I would be better off with the airbags. I don't want it to ride stiffer than it does already. Should I use the airbags in the front and the rear and what about that B&M cooler your running. I'm trying to put a price tag on this before I dive into it.
  4. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    I bagged mine all around but I pull a cargo trailer with mine and the already sagging leafs and about 300lbs of tongue weight made it ride like sh*t. So unless you plan on weighing down the back, bags on the front are good. I ordered everything from Summit Racing.

    Front Bags $66.88

    Rear Bags $179.69

    B&M Transmisson Cooler $49.88

    And this fitting so there is no cutting of the transmission lines to plumb the cooler from Advance Auto Parts
    Imperial Fitting $10.88

    Like I said earlier fitting the air bags to the front of 96+ Cherokees requires a little modification.

    You need to (full instructions)
    1. Jack up the front NOT using the axle and support the vehicle with jackstands.
    2. Remove the wheels
    3. Put a jack under the axle just to support the weight.
    4. Disconnect the front swaybar
    5. Disconnect the front shocks (nows a good time to change those also, I like the Monroe Sensatrac's)
    6. Lower the axle jack to relieve the pressure on the springs
    7. Remove lower spring retainers
    8. Using a spring compressor (rented from Autozone/Advance) compress the front springs and pull them out.
    9. Pull out the bumpstop
    10. Using a reciprocatin saw/cutoff wheel remove the "cup" portion of the bumpstop mount.
    11. Grind/sand your cut surface smooth
    12. Tap threads into the hole in the bumpstop mount.
    13. Using a 3/4" drill bit/hole saw, drill into the center of the lower spring mount.
    14. Insert air bags into coil springs
    15. Reinstall airbag/spring combo back into vehicle
    16. Reinstall lower spring retainer.
    17. Push airbag to the top of the coil spring and connect air line running it through the 3/4" hole in the lower spring mount.
    18. Start raising the jack.
    19. Reconnect front shocks.
    20. Reconnect front swaybar.
    21. Remove jack from front axle.
    22. Run airlines and find a suitable place to mount the air fittings. I drilled 2 holes my Snoway mount to mount the air fittings.
    23. Reinstall wheels.
    24. Remove jackstands and lower vehicle.
    25. Inflate air bags to 50PSI and check for leaks.

    And your done! I usually run the bags at about 40PSI when the plow is on and lower them down to about 10PSI when the plow isn't on.
  5. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

    Thank you very much!

    I really appreciate the time you spent to explain the installation in detail. That will be really helpful. I hope you don't mind if I ask some questions about your set up.

    Are you using the joy stick to control your plow?

    Do you run a strobe or spinning light?

    Is there a need to weight the rear end?

  6. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    Ask away on the questions!

    I'm using a converted Meyer Slickstick to control mine, it's hose clamped to the shifter..not pretty but it works great. I'll see if I can get a pic for you.

    I've got a Galls Responder II halogen rotator mounted to one of the roof rack bars. I'll get a pic of that too.

    You probably don't NEED to run weight but it will give you much better traction and will help counter the weight on the front axle. I would definately run the weight, you can pick up tube sand bags from Home Depot or Lowes for around $3 I use 3 of them in the back.
  7. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

    Thanks again!

    I'm guessing the Curtis joy stick should work for me. Since we have the same vehicle is there a certain spot where I should have the joy stick installed?

    So you leave your light rack on all year long or do you remove it in the spring.
    It looks like the magnetic mounts are 12v powered and the permanent are hard wired. I'm guessing it would be easier just to leave the thing up there if it is hard wired unless it could be unplugged at the light. I think I would like the clear dome with amber lights on both sides. How is your wiring set up?

    Weight in the rear sounds like a good idea. Some people are putting the tube sand in "Rubbermaid" containers with sealed lids.
    So I think I'll spring for the airbags in the rear too.

    Check out this pic of a really cool looking Cherokee. The light bar is awesome...

    Last edited: Apr 2, 2006
  8. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

  9. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    LOL, the pic you posted is my Cherokee, that's from our 1st storm this year pushing around 2 feet.

    Like I said I have my joystick mounted to the shifter but there is all kinds of spots on the console to mount it.

    I bought the magnetic light bar so it has the cig lighter plug on it and it is just bolted to the rack so I can take it off in the spring takes about 5 minutes. Bolt it back on in the fall and just run the wire through the rear passenger door.

    Yeah 700lbs would be terrible for it, you could do it...but not for long:(
  10. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

    LOL...I found that pic from one of your previous posts.

    Is your dome clear with amber filters? Is this your dome?


    or this one:


    The first link is the link you sent me but on that page it states
    "To order a clear dome with colored filters click here"
    The second link shows a different one but includes both magnetic and permanent mounting and the ability to order the colored filters with the order.
  11. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    Mine was the magnetic mount with clear dome and amber filters. I ordered it with the filters so I must have used the link on the page.
  12. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

  13. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    I usually just set the pressure and 40 & 40 for the winter and check it every month. During the summer I'll set the front to 10 and rear to 20 and if I need to pull something heavy I'll bump the rears up to around 60.

    Yup that kit will make everything easy from inside, I have a small rechargeable compressor that I use and keep in the Jeep and usually just check the pressure whenever I check the tire pressure.
  14. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

    Thanks again.

    Adding to my ever growing parts list!
  15. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

    I guess I could do without the air kit and just leave the pressure up for the winter but my Jeep rides pretty stiff already I don't think I could handle it going down the road like a hard tail motorcycle all winter long. I guess it all depends on how tough it is to pressure them up and down. Are your air fittings easily accessible?

    How much plowing are you doing with your Cherokee? I'm just debating how much time I really want to be out there plowing and how much my little Jeep can handle.
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2006
  16. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    The air fittings are easy to access.

    The rear are on angle brackets mounted to the bumper

    The front are mounted on the plow mount

    I have each bag plumbed separately so I can level it side to side if there is an uneven weight but with a tee you could have one fitting for the back and one for the front.

    Also here's a pic of how I mounted the lightbar

    I plow my driveway, my wife's parents, my parents 1/4 mile driveway and the parking lot at the family business. Nothing for $$ just personal stuff. You will be suprised how much your little Jeep can handle. If your Cherokee has the full time 4wd option it's even better since you can make fairly tight manuvers without the front axle binding.
  17. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

    Thanks again!

    Those are great pics. It does look like I could save 300 and just air them up and down like you were.

    Nice installation of your light bar. Did you cut something in half for a spacer between the roof rack rail and the llight bar?

    Looks like you work your Cherokee pretty good and she is holding up fine. That makes me feel a lot better about putting the plwo on. I know I have to be really careful about not hitting anything hard because of the lack of full frame under the Jeep.

    I see some plow have a second blade for back dragging snow. Can you still back drag fine with out the added blade?

  18. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    To mount the light bar I drilled 3 holes in each side of the bottom of the light then used some 1 inch flat aluminum and bolted it all together with the center bolt down through the roof rack using a rubber furniture pad as a cushion since the roof rack isn't flat.

    I've never had a problem back dragging but I really do not do that much. If you have alot to do Snoway offers a down pressure option on their plows to help.
  19. xrdirthead

    xrdirthead Member
    Messages: 60

    The more I read the posts here the more I find people really like the down pressure option on the Sno-Way plows. I'm guessing with a light weight plow the down pressure would come in real handy.
    These are my local dealers:

    Distance: 1.5 miles
    Time Travel: 4 minutes
    Damian Diesel, Inc.
    108 Bodwell Street
    Avon MA 02322

    Distance: 3.6 miles
    Time Travel: 8 minutes
    BROCKTON, MA, 02301

    Distance: 14.5 miles
    Time Travel: 26 minutes
    WEYMOUTH, MA 02188
    Phone: 781 337-1713
    Fax: 781 331-2747

    Distance: 29 miles
    Time Travel: 52 minutes
    Equipment Suppliers
    142 Franklin St.
    Melrose, MA

    I don't know how often I'd need my dealer after the sale but the Sno-Way dealer is on the North side of Boston and I'm on the South side so it would be more like 75 to 90 minutes each way.
    Do you have the ST or MT version?
  20. festerw

    festerw Senior Member
    Messages: 986

    Mine is actually about 10 years old and one of the older DX model series close to the ST series now. I had to change a hose and one of the solenoids this year but had no other problems.

    Blizzard/Curtis/Snoway are all that I wouldn't be afraid of, Meyer on the other hand is what I had on my old truck and had a ton of problems with it.