Custom made plow frames and systems

Discussion in '<a href= target=_blank ?>Sn' started by cat320, Feb 18, 2001.

  1. cat320

    cat320 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 822

    Who has a plow frame or hydraulic system that is custom made for there truck.Can we see any pictues of your customization.What type of truck would you spend this kind of money on?
  2. 75

    75 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 992

    In my case, I mounted a plow on my '75 GMC 2wd, so all the mounting hardware on the truck was built from scratch. One advantage of 2wd is that I was able to run 2 braces under my crossmember back to an additional crosser I bolted on just below the cab. All the force from pushing is straight back, bypassing the (weaker) area where the frame bends up over the front axle. My pipe bumper and "kangaroo catcher" is also custom fabbed, and was easy to adapt to carrying a lift cylinder and arm. As for the plow itself, I had a beat up old Western. I reused the blade (the only good part on it) and built the A-frame from scratch. Keep in mind that I enjoy building trucks as a hobby, I weld for a living, and there wasn't anything available to mount a plow to my truck anyway. I'm into my 3'rd season using it, with no problems other than a couple of cracks on the A-frame, which have been fixed and reinforced. There are pictures of my truck in the thread "Pics of my truck, thanks to BKrois" although they don't show much detail of the installation. I'll try to take some and get them posted sometime in the not too distant future.

    1975 GMC C-35
  3. Skookum

    Skookum LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 675

    I have a old 2WD 74 Chevy 1 ton with a dump body. The guy I bought it from plowed alot of hotels with it. He made the mount on the front for the Western plow. He claimed he made it so it had a further reach and so the a-frame pin mounts were up higher to clear curbs. He claimed he made it so he could push snow up to the curb, then push it right on over the sidewalk to the lawn areas. I have only done it a few times, but it does work over sidewalks.

    It is by no means a pretty work. All it is, is just a thick angle iron square bolted to the front of the frame horns with two small braces up under the frame like on most factory units, but not as far down from the frame. Basically it is all out front like a Unimount setup.
  4. wyldman

    wyldman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 182

    We fab most of our mounts for our older chevy's.Very easy to make,and we usually extend the mount back and under the stabilizer bar mounts to make it stronger.Never had one break yet.Sometimes,if you get a used plow,with a mount for a different vehicle,you can use part of it,or add on to ot to make it work.
  5. snow

    snow Banned
    Posts: 114

    This setup is on a backhoe at a shopping center in norwalk. It's a pretty slick setup. (first photo)4 pins, and two hydraulic hoses to unclip to switch to a bucket. the pump is mounted on the bumper of the machine (second photo). the controls are convientyl located on something close to the bucket controls (third photo). it's a monarch pump. i thought it was a pretty good custom setup on a backhoe.
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  6. 75

    75 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 992

    Something else that is worth asking about is where everyone likes their controls mounted, and what sort of custom touches have you done in this area?

    I HATE reaching for the controls! Especially plow controls, because they see so much use. I use a Monarch pump and control box. Bolting it to the dash was a little far to reach, and I wanted it set up for operation with my right hand. I used a piece of 2"x2"x.125 wall square tube and some 1/8" plate to fabricate a mount for the control box. It's a pedestal that bolts to my cab floor and holds the box at a comfortable angle nice and close to my right hand. Left hand does the steering, right one works the shifter and plow controls.

    One of my friends prefers to work the controls with his left hand, he mounted his Meyer Electro-Touch control panel on the driver's door, up by the vent vindow. (He's got power windows, so no clearance problem with the window crank)

    What do some of you guys out there prefer?
  7. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,937

    I use a BOSS and never mounted the switch box (approx 3x3x3 inches). Instead I position it next to my left thigh. Between my thigh and the drivers door panel. I use my left hand to operate plow and my right to shift (auto) and steer (very little). This has worked very well and allows simultaneous gear selection and plow raise, shake, angle, etc. The control box wires are detachable below the dash. This works much better for me than hardmounting it to the dash, or wherever.

  8. CT18fireman

    CT18fireman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 611

    My own truck is a Manual F350PSD I put the fisher joystick and sander clutch switch right on the stick. One hand operation this way. On my other two trucks I used the conventional plow controls on the left and sander in the center as these are autos.
  9. Alan

    Alan Member
    Posts: 1,185

    My GMC 5500 is totally rigged with my own fabrications. The 5 yd dump body was built in 95 and rode on an F350 for a few years. It was built to big for the 350, knowing I would get a bigger chassis when I got off the Ford.

    When it went onto the 5500 I went to a scissors type hoist, it had a twin piston when it rode the Ford. Built the subframe around the hoist requirements, probably way overbuilt but you can dump on a slope and not twist the hell out of the chassis.

    Had to clip 18" out of the frame to get the right cab-to-axle distance, should have gone with 24" and got more weight on the rear, live and learn.

    Hydraulic system runs off a clutch pump, had to fab mount for the pump, nothing available that was compatible with the pulley alignment. Used the old pulley off the Ford with some machine shop work to mate it to the damper pulley. Tank is outside the frame on the left side, roughly 25 gallons, 1 1/4" intake strainer, sight glass to check oil level and a big return line filter. Everything is piped with Sched. 80 seamless pipe on the pressure side and Sched. 40 return piping wherever I could run hard lines. Only used hoses for areas where there might be flex between components. Swivel fitting on at least one end of every hose to make it easy to replace hoses if the need arises.

    Pulled out the bench seat and installed Bostrom seating, only got one in right now, the other is waiting for parts. They were both junkyard seats and needed new bushings and upholstery. Put in a pedestal to hold the spreader controls. All the plumbing is straight down from the control with hard pipe going into hoses, if anything leaks under the control it can run out the bottom of the pedestal rather than soaking the floorboards.

    Dump handle is right beside the seat. Plow control is a homebuilt joystick set so you can drop your hand off the shifter from 2nd gear and be right on the plow knob. I used a PTO u-joint as a pivot to give me handle motion in two axes. All the commercial joysticks I looked at were wicked sloppy and flimsy. Mine isn't!

    The control handles are cabled back to the valve body which is between the rails of the dump subframe, up high and out of most of the road slush so the valve should last a while.

    I put the switch for the cluth pump on the shifter, used an old electric 2 speed switch. You shift the rear with your last two fingers and switch the pump with the first two. Having the switch on the shifter is handy for running the spreader without having to reach for a control, just start/stop the pump.

    I've still got to built a mounting frame for the 10' Western plow, That was supposed to have been done by now but other things keep taking priority.

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