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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I live in Northern NY and have a 1000 ft driveway that I currently plow with an old ferguson tractor and rear blade. Anyways I got older and smarter so I want to fit my 88 1500 Silverado ( heavily beefed up) with a used plow. This is essentially my farm truck. Come Spring I will be looking for a used plow that I don't want to pay an arm and leg for. What are the better brands among the older commercial type units 1988 - 1996. Which is better and easier to deal with hydraulic or electric, and I prefer SIMPLE. Any other advice including where to look besides the local free traders ect would be most appreciated. Thanks Driz
 

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LetsTalkSnow.com - Moderator
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The Want Ad Digest and ebay are good sources for plows, or check your local truck body upfitter may have some used equipment available.

You state your truck is heavily beefed up. That being the case, I'd look for an 8' Western straight blade. It's not as heavy as some eight footers, yet is a fairly good plow. It's also been around a long time so parts are readily available.

Western also uses an electric pump, which meets your criteria for simple. An electric pump will be an easier install than a belt driven pump, with fewer parts and hoses to worry about.
 

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What is your local dealer or dealers.
Any friends? What do they run?
Are you going to mount it?

Think about getting parts, avalibilty for an older unit.

Summer time is the cheepest time to buy a plow.

A 7- 7 1/2 ft blade will be fine.

I'm partial to Westerns .
You want simple ? older cable controled unit: 2 cables to bat,
1 relay, 1 wire to truck controler and the 2 control cables.

Nothing on the engine.

You should be able to find 1 for around $600.00- $850.00.
Good luck.
 

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if you want simple i'd go with an older style fisher speedcast system. cable operated with a pump under the hood. this is a simple, reliable and durable system for your use.

the electric systems are nice, but seem to need more TLC. IMO
 

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I agree with Got Snow.

The old belt-driven Fisher systems are practically bulletproof. The newer electric systems (by Fisher, Western, Meyer, etc.) are a little easier to install, but in the long run the belt-drive is more likely to give you many more years of trouble-free service.

As I see it, the drawbacks to electric over hydraulic systems are:

1) they put a tremendous load on your alternator & battery (you’ll be replacing them more frequently = $$$).
2) it is not uncommon for the electric motor to need replacement (more $$$).
3) they're more susceptible to freezing because the entire unit is exposed to the elements.

I just outfitted my ’85 CJ-7 with a used Fisher this fall. I passed on a couple of Minute Mount (electric over hydraulic) systems before I found the belt-driven system I was looking for. I’m glad I held out.

Another bonus: the belt-driven systems are likely to be less expensive. In my humble opinion, the two most important things to look for are 1) a yellow triangle on the front. 2) a pump under the hood.

Just my 2-cents... arguably worth that!

Jeff Pierce
 

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Ditto Got Snow & tvpierce.
I have spent much more time & money maintaining & repairing mine & sub's electric pumps vs the Fisher Minute Mount with underhood pump that I have had for years now. Like Pelican said, installing that type of system will be more difficult, but in the long run you can't argue with the simplicity & bulletproofness ;) If you go with that style, have a local plow dealer do the install if that is more than you want to deal with. You can also get electric pumps that get mounted under the hood & that certainly helps with the cold temps problems mentioned earlier. Keep them sheltered & they warm the oil a little from being in the engine compartment vs a pump hanging out in front. But you still have the wear & tear on the elctrical system as mentioned. I replace batteries & altenators on the truck with electric pump much more often than on the truck with the underhood set up.
 

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LetsTalkSnow.com - Moderator
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If drizler hadn't mentioned he only needs to plow his own driveway, I'd have recommended a more elaborate setup.
I prefer a belt driven pump myself, but for his casual use I don't think it would make that much difference which he gets.

He's plowing a 1000' driveway, drop the plow and go. You won't be cycling the pump a whole bunch of times, I don't think you'd draw the battery down far enough to worry much about the electrical system.

I'll stand by my suggestion for meeting his specifications. :nodd
 

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While the belt driven setup is pretty much bulletproof,it would not be the best for this application.

Belt driven setups are much harder to install,and if buying used,may be in need of a new pump or valve body,which aren't cheap.You also end up with the pump and controls,and probably the headgear (on an older setup) left on the truck year round.

An electric setup is a breeze to install,and should work fine for that application.They are a lot more common,cheaper,and you will probably be able to find a newer style mount,where most of the plow hardware comes off the truck when not in use.

Snoway,Western,Fisher,etc are all good plows.Find out who sells what in your area,and try and pick something you can get parts and service for.
 

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Yep, Pelican & wyldman are right in this case. Great points, I'll retract my suggestion to use that style for the reasons given. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I guess I should have clarified

Yes its a 4wd and someday when I manage to get it finished I plan on plowing ( whenever possible ) a 2000' x 150' private grass airstrip. Yes I know thats a lot to tackle with a PU but if it gets buried in its no big deal , spring comes sometime. Anyways I am a fairly accomplished fabricator and welder and can fix about everything from cars to dozers to airplanes to a reasonable extent so the pump isn't going to be a problem. Its easier to fab a mount for such things than it is to chase them down. My main concern is that I want to avoid creating an owner made frame. Thats about where I draw the line. Am I correct in the assumption that with Chevys its 1988- 1996 that have the common frame? Its damned hard to find any where I live near Plattsburgh NY. Thanks for the ideas and insites!
Driz
 

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drizler, contact Jerre Heyer , he's got a warehouse full of used frames and most likely has something you can use. If you're handy with a torch and welder, you should be able to adapt any blade you come across to attach to the frame Jerre might have.
 

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i still stand by my suggestion to use a belt driven pump set-up. the electric units seem to need more maitenance, and where your only doing your drive less heat will be generated and be more apt to "freeze up".
 

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a little off the topic of what to look for in the plow but you stated your going to be plowing a grass airstrip you might want to consider an alternative edge such as a u-edge as to not tear up the ground like you might do with a steel cutting edge.
 

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Again, I'm with Got Snow.

In my humble opinion, the whole idea of electric over hydraulic (converting mechanical energy to electric current, just to run it 3 feet away, then converting it back from electric to mechanical energy) is outrageous. It is unnecessarily complex.
Why don’t we have electric air conditioning on vehicles? Because it makes no sense to pump refrigerant with an electric pump when you already have mechanical energy at your disposal by running a drive belt off your engine. Same with power steering.

The most common problems I’ve heard of with electric over hydraulic systems have been with solenoids, relays, and bad connections. These are problems I will never have to deal with on my belt driven system.

If you offered me a brand new Minute Mount 2 system as an even swap for my 20-year-old Fisher Speedcast, I’d turn you down.

Just my 2-cents… arguably worth that.

jp
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I just found a Ford setup For $250

After all that and looking casually for a couple years I mention I am looking for one to a guy I work with. He is getting rid of his old fisher 8' which is on an 85 F 250. How hard is it to switch or modify the frame to fit on my 88 Chevy 1500? For $250 I can't go wrong even if I have to make a frame adapter. I do make a lot of things from raw steel rather than buy them and have a 230 amp rig, 14" cutoff wheel, grinders and torch set. How hard is it to convert? Mainly are they all straight pieces or have they got to be formed around things?



Also will my poor "Jethro" die from transplant rejection like someone getting a rotten kidney from a cancerous wino. A Ford no less maby if I don't tell anyone they won't laugh too hard.:grinz
 

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you can't go wrong with that deal. a couple of things to consider. check/ask about the pump. they do wear out like anything else. a new one will set you back $230. look at the cylinders and lines.

not sure what the exact difference is between the two set-ups but i'm sure with your tools and knowledge it wont be too difficult. i would also check into ebay, boneyards, and local dealers for parts/pump brackets (as you will need a different one)/info.

after your install and working out some bugs you'll be as happy as a pig in .........

also, i change my pump pulley to a smaller one to make it run faster, not much difference.....(went from fisher lg pulley to sm pulley)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thnks Got Snow

Can those pumps be rebuilt ( like Farm tractor and industrials). I just happen to live not so far from Montreal where there is this little hydro shop that all the farmers go to. They do those $600 hydro pumps for a couple hundred or so, straighten hydraulic arms, cut , reweld and rechrome arms ect. The place is like Mecca for the faithful farmer around here. The reason I mention this is that he says it leaks some and might be going. Its not a big deal but I prefer to fix things right while its apart rather than waiting for it to fail.
At least by next year I will be able to do this inside a warm cab. For the past 8 years I have been doing that drive with a 7' blade on a TO 20 Ferguson tractor, too small, too light and too damned drafty sitting out there in the breeze. I must be gettin old .
 

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it's my understanding that the pumps can be rebuilt, however i believe fisher is not offering this service anymore, probably because of the cost of rebuild to cost of new pump.

not really sure where the pump/resivour would be leaking. i'd check all of the lines and fittings first.

at any rate, theres nothing like plowing snow in a nice heated cab, regardless of how it's actuated!
 
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