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Old 10-13-2016, 12:30 AM   #1
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Default Help me select a tow vehicle/snow plow

Before I can finally achieve my ultimate goal and build a dedicated track-Eliminator, I need to do a few things:
- Build a new house with a yuuuuge garage
- get a tow vehicle and trailer

Considering that the Eliminator is not well protected from the elements, a fully enclosed trailer would be the way to go I guess. Hate to have wet Megasquirt and spark plugs.

The new house will have a loooong driveway and I'm not going to shovel that by hand. I need a vehicle with a plow. My current daily is a Taurus SHO. While it does have AWD, it's not a great tow vehicle (only up to 1000lbs) and there are no snow-plow attachments for it, as far as I know. The wife drives a Mazda CX-5, but I don't think it's up to towing a racecar trailer either and I haven't found any trustworthy looking plows for it. I got the Taurus until at least the end of 2018, so I need something in the meantime.

What's an affordable vehicle to tow a trailer to track events and attach a plow? I'm talking used and less than $5k. If you could sleep in it (meaning at least fit a 6' roll-up mat) at the track, that would be a plus. It doesn't have to have all the creature comforts- it will only be used for towing and plowing. But I don't want to spend a lot of time fixing up the tow-rig. And I would like to get most of my investment back when I sell it in a few years- I hope the get an F150 Raptor after the Taurus.
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Old 10-13-2016, 01:11 AM   #2
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Snow plowing will destroy your car/truck. Get a lawn tractor with a snow blower attachment.
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:38 AM   #3
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No opinions on snow plows -- I stay away from places that it snows.

If you're buying an enclosed trailer you could sleep in that instead of the tow vehicle. Air mattress, maybe some kind of fold-down platform to put it on that suspends it above the hood of the car?

--Ian
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:40 AM   #4
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If you are going to have a long driveway you will have a big yard. Which means you need a lawn tractor anyways.
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:57 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aidandj View Post
If you are going to have a long driveway you will have a big yard. Which means you need a lawn tractor anyways.
Or an RC helicopter and some mad flying skills.

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Old 10-13-2016, 03:49 AM   #6
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But then you can't leave the trailer in the paddock as most tracks won't allow you to stay on premise through the night.

Quote:
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No opinions on snow plows -- I stay away from places that it snows.

If you're buying an enclosed trailer you could sleep in that instead of the tow vehicle. Air mattress, maybe some kind of fold-down platform to put it on that suspends it above the hood of the car?

--Ian
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Old 10-13-2016, 09:43 AM   #7
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If you're going to have a super long driveway to plow, skip on the lawn tractor and get a tractor tractor with a front end loader or a 3 point snowblower.
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Old 10-13-2016, 10:10 AM   #8
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I don't think the full tractor will be needed. When I'm saying long driveway, I'm comparing to my current 40' DW
The new one will be maybe 150'-200' or so. So a BA lawn tractor with a snow-blower would likely take care of that. Are we talking the more-fun hydraulic drive lawn tractors, or should I go with a traditional gear-drive and steering wheel setup?

Also the lawn tractor likely won't do double-duty as a tow-rig. So we still need to solve that problem. According to Google (the most reliable source of technical information known to mankind) the CX5 has a max. tow capacity rating of 2000lbs- not sufficient for an enclosed trailer plus Eliminator.
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Old 10-13-2016, 10:22 AM   #9
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What is the size of Eliminator? Any way it would fit in the back of a cargo van? Just an idea.
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Old 10-13-2016, 10:33 AM   #10
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Cool idea
Not sure about precise dimensions. It's a Miata with the ends cut off, so I'd guess just over 10' long. And roughly the same width- you need 1" spacers in the front, so maybe an inch wider. I'd guess 60"-64" wide.
Now on to google interior dimensions of panel-vans. Then on to painting it white, put on a Hawaii shirt and hang around in the vicinity of playgrounds.
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Old 10-13-2016, 11:23 AM   #11
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The last generation "extended bed" Ford Econoline has an interior cargo length of about 12', and a height of 55" so that would do. But the width between the wheel houses is just 52", which definitely won't do. It's probably enough between the actual walls though. Maybe the interior is just tall enough to have the Eliminator sit ABOVE the wheel houses. Basically just keep the upward angle from the ramps going inside the van. A buddy of mine has a rusted out Econoline sitting behind his house- I'll take some measurements.
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Old 10-13-2016, 11:29 AM   #12
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That won't leave room for anything else. Nice part of a tow vehicle is fitting everything else for the track in it.
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:12 PM   #13
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Putting the car inside a van sounds like a really bad idea.

For cheap tow vehicles I'd look at late 90s/early 2000s 3/4 ton Suburbans. Lots of people bought them as macho minivans, so it's not too hard to find one that's never gone further off road than the mall parking lot and thus isn't beat to ****.

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Old 10-13-2016, 02:24 PM   #14
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The 3/4 tons as ******* awesome. They even came with a duramax in some form. Also quite rare.
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:24 PM   #15
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the 7.3 excursions are also awesome.
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:26 PM   #16
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Quote:
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the 7.3 excursions are also awesome.
7.3 excursions are also expensive as ****. The only 7.3 vehicles that are cheap are the e-350 vans.
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:29 PM   #17
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We have a 150ish ft driveway, two car widths wide and 4 wide at the bottom. We have just been using a big Snapper walk behind snow blower for the last 16 years. Works great, takes about 45min if you don't include cleaning the cars off and shuffling them around.

For towing, I always figured I woukd just buy one of the V8 body on frame work vans. Should be cheap and easy to get parts for, can sleep in it just fine as well.
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:31 PM   #18
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Quote:
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The 3/4 tons as ******* awesome. They even came with a duramax in some form. Also quite rare.
GM never sold a Suburban with a Duramax in it. A few people have motor-swapped them, but it's not an inexpensive proposition by a long shot.

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Old 10-13-2016, 02:40 PM   #19
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Err. Oops. The 6.5l turbo diesel then. Idk saw one the other day at PIR.
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Old 10-13-2016, 02:48 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by x_25 View Post
We have a 150ish ft driveway, two car widths wide and 4 wide at the bottom. We have just been using a big Snapper walk behind snow blower for the last 16 years. Works great, takes about 45min if you don't include cleaning the cars off and shuffling them around.

For towing, I always figured I woukd just buy one of the V8 body on frame work vans. Should be cheap and easy to get parts for, can sleep in it just fine as well.
I'm old, fat and lazy. So if my tow vehicle with a little modification will allow me to clean the driveway from the comfort of a heated cabin, I'm all for it. If not it's no big loss.

That being said, I like the idea of a V8 work van as a tow rig. Plenty of space to nap in and store parts and tools. It won't really need 4WD, so we're good there.
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