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Undecided about 2wd dually for commercial removal??

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by dzines, Nov 4, 2004.

  1. dzines

    dzines Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    hey everyone:

    hoping for some feedback.....I found a '92 Chev. 3500 HD 2wd dually with high miles, but its been gone completely through and only has 35K miles on a new GM crate 6.5L diesel motor. AT, AC, PW, PDL, It has a new paint job and a 1 yr old steel flatbed w/o a hoist. I think the price is right, (<$5000) but I'm hesitant to try to push snow with a two wheel drive truck. However I need to buy a V-box SOON for salt contracts this winter and don't want to destroy my '04 Chevy, spreading salt. So, I thought this truck might be alright to put a blade on and a V-box on the flatbed.

    I almost wrote the check yesterday, and decided i'd do some checking around. I'm just hesitant to only have the rear wheels turning on my truck. If it were Colorado powder, I probably wouldn't worry about it, but this is Indiana wet slop.

    please help
  2. Dwan

    Dwan Senior Member
    Messages: 879

    Try it if you don't like it then trade it in on a 4x4. It all depends on your area and what you have to plow.
  3. Mick

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

    I'd really advise against it. I use a 3500 DRW to plow and have a two yard sander on it. Most times it's great, even in 2wd. But if I'm in a situation like where I just pushed into a pile and need to back up - if it's on any kind of incline, it won't move. Also, it's terrible if, like you say, the "slop" is freezing or is frozen - it's not budging. I even have Cooper M&S tires studded all around. You might try chains - I bought a set for "just in case", but haven't used them yet because 4wd will get me almost anywhere - it's practically unstoppable.

    I left off the inside duals last year. It gave better traction, but two problems:

    1. A full load of sand overloaded the two remaining tires.
    2. It's illegal to alter a vehicle tire configuration if equipped with ABS.

    Yes, I'd have liked to got by for $5,000 but, as usually is true, you get what you pay for.
  4. Bolts Indus.

    Bolts Indus. PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,176

    I agree with Mick.

    I also use a 3500 DRW 4x4. Most of the time I'm in 2wd but get stuck a few times a night. Then go to the 4wd.
  5. ratlover

    ratlover PlowSite.com Addict
    from IL
    Messages: 1,325

    Your also starting the run with lotsa ballast and then spitting it out all over the place so you end up with alot less by the time you are heading home. Might go like hell at the begining of the night but get progressivly worse. Running salt outa dumps I know that there was a place we always did first becasue if yoou tried to do it without a full bed of salt you were sol
  6. Mick

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

    ratlover, I had to laugh - I've done that one, too. Kind of unrelated, but probably one of the dumbest things I've done was to take the 9' plow off, go fill the sander and come back to put the plow back on. :eek:
  7. Mdirrigation

    Mdirrigation Senior Member
    Messages: 413

    I would say go for it , I have always has a 2wd dually , always plow , always have ballast , And I carry a set of chains if I need them. I have gotten stuck in a 2wd and 4wd thats a given . Run it for a year or 2 make money with it . If its a heavy snow leave your salt till you are done plowing then spread the salt. I am one that will hang a plow on almost any truck , 2 or 4 wheel drive .
  8. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    the 6.5 isnt the best diesel choice. low HP, torque and milege.
  9. dzines

    dzines Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    just wondering as good as the price is on this truck and all the money dumped into it by the owner......being only about $4500.......could it feasably be converted from a 2wd to a 4wd???

    Really...what would it take???.....Front axle with diff., drive shaft, transfer case....?? I might be able to find the parts out of one that died somewhere. I know it wouldn't be simple, but I'm not finding 89-98 body style duallys for less than 10K esp. with a Diesel.

    I know I should probably give up on this truck, but its hard to see buying a second truck thats very nice when I don't have it booked yet.

    Thanks for the info so far
  10. dzines

    dzines Junior Member
    Messages: 20

    04SD: I realize the 6.5 isn't the best.....the 6.6 Duramax is!! :nod: I'm sure that comment could start a thread all its own...

    anyway, I realize the 6.5 wasn't the best, but it was a lot better than the 6.2. Wasn't it?? I've heard all negatives about the 6.2L. I realize the better diesel pickups in the 90's were the Cummins, and the PSD...respectively. BUT I haven't found any early '90's Ford PSD, DRW's that had as much painted steel on them, as they had rust. And an early '90's Dodge,......come on, is still an old dodge. looks like a dodge, rides like a dodge. But I love the old cummins motors. I've looked for whatever I could find in a 1T Dually 4wd, this just seemed like a good deal.
  11. cet

    cet PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,257

    I have a 1999 Chev 3500 HD. We have used it for plowing for 5 years now. This truck has been great and will push 12" of snow. I just bought a 9.5 Fisher V yesterday that I am mounting on my 2003 3500 GMC and expect to have no problems. Both these trucks carry V box salters and go out with a full load. That seems like a great price and I would go for it.
  12. Without going into a long thread----Its a great choice, if you can't get a 4x4 dually. I have used my c3500 2wd for three years and have yet to have ANY sort of problem. payup
  13. derekbroerse

    derekbroerse 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,377

    Truck sounds like a reasonable deal. Nothing wrong with a 6.5L Turbo Diesel, just not as good as the Cummins. Thats a given.

    Converting to 4wd: Probably depends on your skills! I seriously doubt that it is a bolt-on operation. Just for yukks look into a solid-axle front conversion setup for the same truck as a 4x4... then an older solid axle will (likely) fit without too much trouble. Tranny, tcase, driveshaft, shifter, etc. etc. its no small job nor is it something I would wanna start this close to snow!!! :p

    Doable, but maybe not the most practical.

    There are lots of people who plow with 2wd dually trucks. I have a (retired) '85 sitting here, and my '87 TBI donor truck appears to have been one too.... Just carry a cell phone! lol
  14. bobshm

    bobshm Junior Member
    Messages: 17


    I had a 98 K3500 that I bought new. The 6.5 was a nightmare. First injection pump failure at 1k miles, transfer pumps, electronic throttle problems, torque converter, transmission- you get the idea. I gave up on it at 20K miles. Any vehicle that keeps leaving you on the side of the road is useless, especially in our business. Bought a DuraMax this year- whoever came up with that engine should have a monument named after them. It's the finest engine I've ever driven. :angel:
  15. butler L&S

    butler L&S Member
    Messages: 89

    I have a 2wd F350 dump with a 8" western. The truck is used primarily for sanding and sees only a couple of hours of plowing each event. I'm selective as to the lots it plows (mostly flat) and have had great luck. I would not recommend 2wd as your primary plow truck but as a back-up or second truck you should be OK.
  16. 84deisel

    84deisel Senior Member
    Messages: 697

    a chevy 3500 hd is a 15000 gvw truck. its a size a above a 1 ton pickup so bi truck rules apply to it.can be converted to fourwheel drive but cost prohibitive and really not needed.
  17. gpin

    gpin Senior Member
    Messages: 390

    We have GMC 3500 dumps we use for plowing, one is 2wd, we have the v box on it and a 8.5 striaght blade. It NEVER goes out alone anymore. The frustration of being stuck is too much of a waste of time. As a back up, (especially for clearing windrows) and for salt yes, as the only plow vehicle, I would say no.
  18. derekbroerse

    derekbroerse 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,377

    6.2 and 6.5 Diesel

    Funny how either they give trouble right from day one, or they tend to last forever.

    bobshm, I'm guessing you got a lemon! At least you stayed loyal enough to try the Duramax and not jump to the Ford or Dodge camp...
  19. J HIsch

    J HIsch Member
    Messages: 66

    I am in Indiana south western part, I have a F350 with a dump bed and we put about 22 sandbags over the axles and it never had any problems. it would push the biggest piles back.