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Tripping the blade

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by MATTHEW, Jan 7, 2002.


    MATTHEW Member
    from NE OHIO
    Messages: 47

    Did my first plowing and things went real well. I do mostly residential driveways. They have those cracks that separate the slabs, you know. Anyway, there are a few of them that tripped the blade at each section. Tell me, is tripping the blade considered normal and acceptable, or does it wreak havok on the truck & plow?
  2. TurfPlus

    TurfPlus Senior Member
    Messages: 179

    Trip edges are designed to save the plow and truck in the event you hit an immovable object. Heavy snow will also trip. Try and remember were the problem sections are or mark them and go slow. Try lifting the blade a little when coming up to the area or object. Another option is changing to a rubber or U-edge.
  3. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    The trip function is actually there to prevent things like the cracks in the slabs you mentioned from wreaking havoc on the truck/plow, so it was doing it's job. (Not sure whether you have a full-trip blade or bottom-trip one, either way the purpose is the same)

    TurfPlus has good advice, with regard to remembering where they are another thing you can do is make a simple sketch of the "problem driveways" and indicate the crack/bump/sewer cover etc on it.
  4. GoSlo

    GoSlo Junior Member
    Messages: 15

    You could also turn the blade slightly and i may keep the cutting edge fromfalling into the crack at that joint.
  5. carlriv2

    carlriv2 Senior Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 126

    Reguardless of if the trip edge is working the goal is not to have it trip. Plow carefully and be aware. Of course sometimes you hit things but not all the time.
  6. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    The worst part about hitting something hard enough to trip your blade is that it tends to wake you (and whoever's driveway you're plowing) up - quickly and completely. Especially at 5:30 in the morning. The first time, I got out and looked all over trying to find whatever it was I broke. Finally figured out I'd snagged a tree root.

    MATTHEW Member
    from NE OHIO
    Messages: 47

    Remember, this is my first year plowing and my first attempt. When it tripped, I thought a bomb hit me (and I was fully awake from tons of coffee). The few problem drives have tall borders so I cannot angle the blade (or can I ?)
    Mine trips the full blade. It is a 7.5' Poly. I just got this truck this spring and want to keep it for a long time.
    Guess maybe I could estimate where the cracks are and lift it a little, huh?
    Thanx for the advise!
  8. Wilburn Parks

    Wilburn Parks PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 64

    I agree with GoSlo Angle your blade so your not parallel to the cracks as the tip of the blade tends to jump or not fall into cracks when not parallel.
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2002

    PINEISLAND1 PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 664

    I dont have nearly the problem anymore since I run urethane, but maybe on the particularly bad ones you could back drag the drive out to the curb, then push it up on the corners.
  10. DaveK

    DaveK Senior Member
    Messages: 420

    You wouldn't have to angle it all the way, just enough so that one corner is an inch or two ahead of the opposite corner. That way, the edge won't "drop" into the crack.
  11. steveair

    steveair Senior Member
    Messages: 176


    think everyone is right on the mark with suggesting that you keep the blade angled, at least slightly, when going over cracks and what not. It may still catch a little, but usually bounces right over........just keep speed very slow on drives where you know that this will be a problem.

    As for tripping, be thankful it was only a few times......did a condo complex last night.............TRIP CITY!!!!

    About 50 driveways to do, all had to be back dragged and then pushed side to side. On the road, belgium block, and where the drives were there was that little 1/2 inch belgium block curb......a real catcher.

    After doing about 20 of them, you get tired and really have to keep focus. Many times, you have to drop the plow a little bit on tip of the curb so that it doesn't catch.....even then, irregularties in the Belgium catch the plow.......I lost track of counting how many times the plow tripped after the 10th drive..

  12. DaveK

    DaveK Senior Member
    Messages: 420

    Sounds like you need a urethane edge.
  13. steveair

    steveair Senior Member
    Messages: 176

    could be...

    but I think it sounds like, and I mean "SOUNDS" like I need to get a new account!
  14. sonjaab

    sonjaab PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    MATT, Are u using plow shoes (skids) ? Are your trip
    springs weak or not adjusted tight enough ?
    Or those must be some BIG cracks !!!........Geo
  15. DaveK

    DaveK Senior Member
    Messages: 420

    I don't know anyone that uses shoes. If the shoes keep the edge high enough to avoid scrapping the surface, why even bother using a cutting edge at all.

    And belgium block is not exactly a smooth surface.
  16. ohiolawnguy

    ohiolawnguy Member
    Messages: 59

    everybody who forementioned has the right advice. it is absoulutely essential to learn where those particular trouble spts are though. because after time, continually tripping will put stress on the king pin of the a-frame. then one night snap and the kingpin will sheer out. once this happens it can be welded, but is never the same again. then you will have to buy a new a-frame to be certain of the same problem not recurring
  17. plowking35

    plowking35 2000 Club Member
    from SE CT
    Messages: 2,923

    AHHHHH the bad old days of catching expansion joints and raised man hole covers. I look back on that as the dark ages of plowing for us. I wont even say it, as others have already. You can read my signature and guess what I am thinking.
  18. Alan

    Alan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,393

    I've got to toss in my opinion on urethane also. It will eliminate the trips on small obstacles and softent eh big ones as well. As for the cobbles, get urethane, keep the account (if it's making money for you) and quit beating up the plow over a 1/2" bump.

    As an interesting thought about steel scraping better than u'thane, when the edge cuts into pack to the point where it trips the blade you can't cut any more than that, no matter what the edge is made of. Had to scrape and sand a gravel drive yesterday so a builder could get a tractor trailer load of barn parts delivered. It had a pretty good pack built up and my "inferior" urethane edge shaved it enough to trip the blade. Made me think that opinions without experience aren't good for much.
  19. steveair

    steveair Senior Member
    Messages: 176


    I would love to give the urethane blade a shot, but quite frankly, its a money issue at this point.

    Between insurance, the cost of the plow, and misc. expenses I have spent this year, I'm not spending another dime on my plow setup.

    It's hard to say what the snow situation is going to be here in NJ. We may, or may not get that many more storms. A few hundred dollars is not much to spend, but it is when its winter and you have little income coming in, you have taxes due, and then you have to shell out more money for snow equipment.

    Maybe when my steel wears out, or maybe if I win the lottery, I'll buy one. If I do win the lottery though, think I'll give up snow plowing all together.... :)

  20. GeoffD

    GeoffD PlowSite.com Veteran
    Messages: 2,266


    How do you plow and run the air port and the same time?