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Two trucks, which one would be better for a plow truck?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by s_aloisio, Feb 16, 2014.

  1. s_aloisio

    s_aloisio Member
    Messages: 34

    I own a 1997 2500 dodge, reg cab, long box, 5.9l diesel, standard. 200000k

    I also have a 2004 GMC dura max, ext cab, short box, auto. 240000k

    Which would you throw a plow on? This will not be a primary plow vehicle, I will be doing a tractor/blower service but want the truck as a back up.

    Then the loaded question, what plow would you choose and why.

    thanks in advance for your answers.
  2. jhall22guitar

    jhall22guitar PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    Is one of the trucks your daily driver?
  3. s_aloisio

    s_aloisio Member
    Messages: 34

    the GMC has been my winter truck and the dodge has been my summer truck.

    I can use either as a plow truck, would prefer whichever would be better suited for the task. Been using a tractor or bobcat in the past a truck is new territory for me.
  4. Diesel Dan

    Diesel Dan Senior Member
    Messages: 219

    I'd say it doesn't matter really, the Chevy is probably better about starting cold though.
  5. SnowFakers

    SnowFakers Senior Member
    from CT
    Messages: 944

    Some don't like chevy front ends. Both will plow nicely
  6. jhall22guitar

    jhall22guitar PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    If the chevy is already your winter truck then I would use that. No need to have both trucks for the winter instead now.
  7. Urdum2

    Urdum2 Member
    Messages: 34

    V plow for busting thou drifted country roads and streets, drive ways.......a winged plow if you need to push snow to stack and pack, move snow away from parked or stationary objects.....and a straight plow for just open areas.....as far as maker...it just a matter of which one you prefer or whom treats you the best..IMO ....

    Does the gmc have the same trans as the silverado?????...just curious..same year 2004 and model 2500
  8. s_aloisio

    s_aloisio Member
    Messages: 34

    thank you for the replies.

    What I am gathering is that between the two trucks one wouldn't be substantially better than the other.
  9. s_aloisio

    s_aloisio Member
    Messages: 34

    if the silverado is a 2500hd diesel then yes, they both have the Allison transmission.
  10. Urdum2

    Urdum2 Member
    Messages: 34

    True....all trucks will push snow.......it's a crap shoot on which truck...I would say the one less abused....will last alittle longer...but be ready to put a trans in....just happened to a friend of mine he has a older dodge and I just blew my trans on 04....not saying it will happen but sooner or later it will happen
  11. ScubaSteve728

    ScubaSteve728 Senior Member
    Messages: 499

    it is dodge vs GMC
    and i would go GMC because it is auto and already a winter truck
  12. s_aloisio

    s_aloisio Member
    Messages: 34

    both trucks are in really good shape, the GMC is my winter truck simply because I already had winter tires on rims for it.

    Is there a durability difference between an auto or standard pushing a plow. Rebuild wise I'm assuming about $1000 for a clutch on a standard, and don't even want to think of the cost to rebuild an Allison.
  13. r.renterprises

    r.renterprises Member
    Messages: 31

    I push a 810 blizzard with a 01 dodge diesel nv5600. Truck has 125000 on it now has pushed snow and pulled trailers from new. Truck still has the factory clutch and never had any tranny issues. I had a dodge with a v10 and same plow that auto trany made it 3k and was toast. Will only ever plow with a stick after that experience.
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2014
  14. PLOWMAN45

    PLOWMAN45 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,951

    Sell em both and get a newer truck
  15. s_aloisio

    s_aloisio Member
    Messages: 34

    :) the tractor is the major capital investment this year, I'm sure one of the old girls will do fine as a backup, no need for more payments.

    plus why upgrade to a new pickup and take a major hit to fuel economy? my 97 5.9 12valve, and my LB7 both get way better mileage than any newer truck.
  16. PLOWMAN45

    PLOWMAN45 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,951

    you have 240,000 miles on each truck add up what you have put in each not to mention a 5000 snow plow
  17. s_aloisio

    s_aloisio Member
    Messages: 34

    ah there is the misunderstanding 240,000k is only 150,000 miles.

    In my opinion 150,000miles is not a lot on a maintained diesel pickup. If I had 240000miles, 390000km I'd be of the exact same opinion as you.

    Neither pickup has started to nickel and dime me yet. I track all maintenance and repair costs. As soon as a vehicle starts to cost me near what a new vehicles payments would be I'll upgrade.
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2014
  18. Antlerart06

    Antlerart06 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,437

    I go with the ram its a manual its hard to break a manual tranny and cheaper to put a clutch in then fixing a Auto tranny

    I have 5 speed and I can push bigger load of snow with out loosing traction vs my Auto trucks

    But with if the truck has low gears then I wouldn't use it My stick has high gears in it So in reverse I can run 15 mph backing up and first gear I run 15mph at 2500rpm
  19. KLC99

    KLC99 Senior Member
    Messages: 160

    Tractor/blower primary suggests that the truck will be plowing driveways as a backup.

    I assume the best chance of needing it will come during heavy snowfalls when a mechanical failure is more likely and/or an extra snow mover is useful to help get through the route quickly.

    I think the Dodge is a better choice for a couple reasons:

    Shorter wheelbase

    Tighter turning radius - goes along with the wheelbase but even longer wheelbase dodges with the dana axles turn tighter than the ifs gm's for some reason. (Source - our quad cab longbed dodges from '99 and '03 turn noticeably tighter than our early 2000's gmc sierra 2500 with the same cab and longbed)

    Regular cab is easier to see out of

    The ability to turn around at the end of a longer drive shaves valuable minutes off of your route time and saves stress on the operator

    Manual trans - for heavy snow the man trans is king. Let the clutch out and push without watching your trans temp. If things are really hairy use 4-low but the cummins has so much torque at idle the clutch will see little to no wear as you can just let it out without throttle. The allison trans is the best auto for plowing though with the lowest 1st and reverse gears in trucks from the era. It will perform well but I give the edge to the nv5600/cummins combo

    Dana 60 vs ifs - I don't feel that the dana axle is much stronger than the gm setup but tire wear is not really an issue with a solid axle and it is technically an issue with ifs - not a big deal but the alignment is affected a little more on the gm when the front dips so I give the nod to dodge here too because you don't have to do anything to it vs needing to adjust torsion bars for proper alignment with the plow on (or timbrens, etc.)

    Convenience - the dodge is sitting now for the winter. Let it sit with plow installed and ready to go and continue driving the gmc as you are now

    Frame - There is a greater chance of frame damage (cracking) on the gmc from the weight of the plow if you don't have a gusset welded onto the stress point. I believe your year is still at risk although the HD frame is plenty beefy - maybe worth a shot but no worries with the dodge.

    Frame - the boxed frame on the gmc is harder to keep rust free than the c-channel frame on the older dodge. (dodges after '03 have a fully boxed frame too) Box is better in most ways but rust prevention is not one of them.

    Brakes - the gmc has a rust sensitive and expensive abs system and brakeline routing that is prone to failure from corrosion and difficult to replace. Aftermarket stainless or cunifer lines would be an eventual requirement if the truck was used to plow and you would find yourself pulling the abs fuse after the front sensors get touchy and start kicking off the abs when you hit the brakes at slow speed. This makes it very easy to hit something while turning around in a driveway.

    There's my 2 cents

    Plow - any brand v-plow assuming most use will be in heavy snow
  20. s_aloisio

    s_aloisio Member
    Messages: 34

    Yes the truck is planned as a back up incase of breakdown.

    Thank you for the very well thought out and informative response I appreciate it. You pointed out some things I had overlooked and some I was unaware of.