Engine Size

Discussion in '<a href=http://www.plowsite.com target=_blank ?>Sn' started by Alan, Mar 4, 2000.

  1. Alan

    Alan Member
    Posts: 1,185

    I see a lot of talk about diesel power on here. Or big cube gas power. Once you generate enough torque at the wheels to induce wheelspin, what good does more power do for you?<p>I've plowed with 350 GM up front as well as 305, both TBI engines. The 350 had 4.10 rear, the 305, 3.73. I saw NO practical difference in power at the plow. Currently running 350/3.73 Posi rear, seems like a good match. Also running 2 S-10s with 4.3/3.42 rears. Neither my son, myself, or our extra driver can see any difference in pushing power between the three trucks. These are all running 8' Sno-Way, so no difference in the plow load. The only time we see any difference is when we're in the pile, stacking, and the 350 will spin itself in easier. Nothing gained by that.<p>Only place I can see an advantage with diesel/big block might be the extra weight on the front axle gicing you a bit more bite with the front tires.<p>Now, maybe in 1-ton configuration, with dump body and spreader the extra power might be usable to get rolling, is it really that much of a help? <p>Personally, I don't like to plow with much extra load in the truck. I feel that the extra weight adds greatly to wear on transmission or clutch. I prefer to salt early in a storm, then plow once there is enough to push, and salt again after it is over, IF necessary. Usually a good anti-iceing application early will preclude the need for de-icing.
     
  2. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    All i can say that in pickups and mason dumps the diesel power is only needed when the snow really gets heavy. I plow a runway and we use big equipment. We have 4 trucks with 10 foot plows, a walter snow fighter with a 20 foot plow, and this year, added a small chevy 350 mason dump wiht a 9 foot fisher to the line up. It has the turbo diesel, and it gets bogged down. We also have a 92 dodge with a 360 and used that once. It died out there pushing that kind of weight. Only could take a 2 foot cut and still was slugging down the runway at 15 miles an hour. The chevy diesel has a 5 speed man. and will max out doing 35 only taking a 3 foot cut. <p>Just from my own experiences, the gas engines are probably fine for residential work. If you were doing road work or parking lots though, and the snow gets heavy, the diesel would be my choice.
     
  3. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    Oh ya, if you want to see the walter with the 20 ft plow go to www.mmuair.com and click on the pictures icon on the left and click on walter snow fighter. If you never seen equipment like this, its big. Love driving it myself. The tranny just went out last storm and cost 11000 to fix. OUCH. If you really want to see big stuff, check out your local airport if you live up north. Syracuse has a 35 footer...unbelievable. Just something i'd mention for you guys that love seeing big equipment...<br>
     
  4. GeoffDiamond

    GeoffDiamond LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 1,651

    I don't buy a diesel for plowing. If my plow trucks just sat around in the off season they would be gas. Only they are used all year long, and sometimes they drive 100 miles to a job site if not more with a trailer, or a heavy load. There diesel makes all the difference, if the truck was going to plow i used to buy gas because untill 99 Ford's transmission couldn't take the power of the 7.3. I have noticed a big fuel savings by useing diesel in all the new plow trucks. If your pushing a lot of long runs, and trying to stack high at the end, diesel makes all the difference.<p>Geoff
     
  5. plowking35

    plowking35 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from S.E. CT
    Posts: 1,687

    Steve what type of edges do you use on your equip? And 35 mph pushing a blade of snop isnt to bad for any truck.<br>Dino<p>----------<br> Professional Ice and Snow Management <br>Products:Services:Equipment www.sima.org
     
  6. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    Hey plowking,<p>We use steal edges here. Our runways are grooved so the poly ones would wear out real quick. We got through this winter (NJ) with the same edges on all the plows, but need to change them now all. <p>35 isn't a bad speed, but for us plowing is a<br>different game. Our big trucks,(mainly chevy C50 and ford f800) have big 10 foot plows and can take a 6 foot bite doing 30-35. The name of the game is speed for us. The runway is 150 ft wide so we need to throw it as far and as quick as possible. We can't have a windrow of over 2 ft on the edges, so if it does pile up, or if the snow storm is calling for more than 3 - 4 inches about, we have to use our blower. We try not too bring that beast out in less we have too.<p>An example of wear on the blades i give you is with tires. All our vehicles (pickups and <br>ford explorers) go on the runway everday. The average tire life we get is between 3000 and 7000 miles. Amazing how abrasive it is. If its that hard on the tires, you can imagine how it is on the edges.
     
  7. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,446

    Because most snowplowing takes place at 25mph or less, all you need to do is plow in low range.<p>A V-6 gas has more effective torque in low than a big diesel.
     
  8. yortengel

    yortengel LawnSite Member
    Posts: 216

    I run a 350 Gas, It works great for the small lots and driveways that I do. I would go to diesel if I had bigger accounts. Just have to remember that they cost more to fix. I know that GM has had a lot of problems with there injector pumps, they do carry an extended warranty though, that is no help when it breaks at the beginning of the storm.
     
  9. yortengel

    yortengel LawnSite Member
    Posts: 216

    Hey Steveair, Very nice truck. I also liked your rescue. I fly out of PHN in Michigan, They also have a very large plow and a large snowblower that interchange onto a large front end loader. Really a very neat machine.<br>they don't have any small equipment,I have to us my truck to plow around the plane to get it out.
     

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