View Full Version : getting plow truck unstuck alone?? (new ?? end of post #7)

Dec. 22, 2008, 12:16 PM
You knew this was coming, no???

I'm not entirely sure what I was doing wrong, I could go forward, but kept not being able to reverse (stuck/spinning)... so I kept going forward... :uhoh:

Not in a horrible spot, not entirely sure why I'm stuck.

I have a second truck which I am headed out to dig out by hand. Smaller, but 4wd. Can get a tow strap. When I go to town for gas for the snowblower. :lol:

BUT, I live alone. Am I going to be able to twitch the plow truck out without another person to drive one of the two???

Going to be a LONG winter otherwise. :lol:

All I can say is thank GOD I declined an extra shift today. I believe I'll spend most of it (and prolly a good part of tonight!) doing snow removeal.

Lady Counselor
Dec. 22, 2008, 12:20 PM
You should be able to. Leave it in neutral and creep along, avoid spinning the wheels so you don't bog down in that one too. Just pull it far enough back that you are out of the worst of it.

Dec. 22, 2008, 12:27 PM
Pinto, Is there anyone you could call to come over and help? Yes, you can probably do it alone, but I think it would be safer if there were two.

I do all of my chores alone and often worry about what would happen to me if I feel from the hay loft or tipped my tractor over on that steep west paddock. Would my horse run like Lassie and get the neighbor? I don't think so.

Just be careful!!

Dec. 22, 2008, 01:05 PM
In the past, I put the floor mats from the truck (I knew those Huskies were so expensive for a reason!) or door mats from outside my house under the wheels that give traction (if 4WD use the front wheels) just to get started. If you can just get a little forward movement, Don't Stop, just keep going slowly until you are out. Some people keep bags of non-clumping kitty litter in their vehicle to pour in front of the wheels for traction, that works too.

If you try to use the other truck to pull out the stuck truck, you could end up with 2 stuck trucks!! Try rescuing the struck truck first, carefully.

Dec. 22, 2008, 01:15 PM
Kitty litter is a godsend when you are stuck! Be careful!!!

Dec. 22, 2008, 01:24 PM
My guess is that you were not scraping down enough and leaving 4 inches or so of snow, so you could not get traction when you tried to back up. Why you could go forwards but not back is one of those plowing mysteries.

A layer of squashy snow is very hard for trucks to get traction.

What others said about getting unstuck is what I'd say too.

Do you have GOOD tires on your truck?
Last winter I kept getting stuck and when I got new tires it was a world of difference.

If not good tires, chains? You must have good traction to plow.

Please be careful with the tow straps/chains - if one snaps you can lose body parts.

Dec. 22, 2008, 01:56 PM
well, the problem is that my friends who are close enough to help--none have trucks. Friends with large equipment/trucks etc.--too far away.

I will play around. SHOVELLED out the regular truck, :dead: and just returned from getting gas for the snowblower and a tow strap.

I will be IN one truck if I do try to twitch the other out.

Does twitching logs out of the woods with Fjords resemble twitching plow out with a Ford at ALL?? I can run a mean team of Fjords.... :lol:

The good part is there is no pressure, no panic... Work truck is OUT and free to get me to work. Plow truck can sit there a week or a month if it needs to.

My guess is that you were not scraping down enough and leaving 4 inches or so of snow, so you could not get traction when you tried to back up:yes: exactly. Hindsight and all... when I went to dig out other truck, I saw the loose snow. I don't know WHY I was doing that. :no:

The GREAT part is I managed to get the snowbanks at the end of the driveway done BEFORE bogging down. Which is HUGE. Because they are huge. Quite literally five feet or so this morning. :dead: And I got them pushed way, way back, so there's room to snowblow etc. If this winter keeps up like this--that should leave room for oh, a week and a half or so! :eek:

live and learn. My brother, who plows for a living, gave me a primer, but then said "but you won't really GET it until you DO it." He *is* right. I think it's prolly like your first car accident and you have to get it out of the way... :lol:

One last question--as I was coming back up the mountain, I'm watching regular ol' trucks just like my plow truck, plow UPhill driveways. I was only trying to get up a very slight grade.

What is the trick to that?? They didn't have huge weight in the back (I have a little, and yes, I have good tires, VERY good tires I'll never be able to afford to replace! :eek: ) I am fairly sure it is TECHNIQUE vs. truck power... ???

Dec. 22, 2008, 01:59 PM
We got a truck unstuck yesterday by using a come along winch. We were lucky in that the truck slid off the road in front of our house in just such a way that the front tow hooks lined up perfectly with a very stout tree across the lane. We were unlucky in that it slid off the road right on top of our mailbox, completely obliterating the latter.

Good luck!

Dec. 22, 2008, 02:03 PM
It's also supposed to warm up and rain, so you might get some relief.

Twitching a vehicle out is really best done with someone else in the stuck truck (so your close friends do not need their own trucks) because they can power the stuck truck gently, so you have the least amount of towing to do.

Once it's out a little, it will start powering itself. Also, the person in the truck can steer, and brake should things get out of hand. It's really not a good idea to twitch a dead weight like a truck. Too heavy. Since the truck runs, get someone to drive it.

And yeah, it's technique. All about momentum and the right amount of pressure on the plow.

Dec. 22, 2008, 02:23 PM
Poor you! I am lucky enough to have a big tractor to save me when I get small machines or my car stuck. Good luck!

Dec. 22, 2008, 04:10 PM
Well, twitching it didn't work. 's ok, I needed a good tow strap anyway--and I'm pleased with the one I got. I've often wanted to stop and help folks but been unable--once or twice had someone stop to help me but not had a tow strap.

I can see what's going on now... driver's side is ok, passenger side is up on/into a snowdrift. RIGHT into it. ;)

I dunno if the warmer weather is going to be better or worse. <ug>

I will probably gift myself a tow out this weekend if I can't get help.

Now I'm headed off for a children's plastic sled for water (I *do* have to maneuver around said stuck truck) and some more shear pins for the snowblower.

Dec. 22, 2008, 04:25 PM
I've never been impressed with commercial towstraps. My dad makes the ones that I have in the car (mechanic). I have 3 (different lengths) and so long as they stay in there I have never needed them.

Dec. 22, 2008, 04:47 PM
Did you forget to lift the plow when you started to back up? I did that the other night. First time plowing in a year, pouring down snow, pitch black dark and I pushed a b-i-g plowfull down the drive into the field so as to make room for the next storm. Got to the bottom of the rise, neglected to lift the plow, tried to back up the hill and swerved the hind end sideways. I was wedged between the huge snow bank I had just made and a big Prelim size rolltop jump waiting for summer. I spun around for a while then noticed. AAA HAH! Plow's down. Picked it up, rocked a bit and blew outta there.

My husband, years ago, drove his mother's old Chevy station wagon down the power line to collect wood he'd been splitting down there. It was October (read mud season #2 in Maine). He loaded the car with wood and promptly found himself stuck. Really stuck. Above-the-axels-stuck. He walked home, got into my 1970 Volvo station wagon, took a length of polypro rope and actually expected to haul the fully loaded car out.......It did not work! He ended up with 2 VERY stuck vehicles and an extremely amused friend on a tractor dragging them out.

Dec. 22, 2008, 06:32 PM
Why not go pick up a friend and have them drive the stuck truck while you drive the tow truck?

Plowing. One thing is to NOT try and plow a full width of snow if you can help it, when the traction is poor. I would do 1/2 blade widths up to 2/3rds... and as I reached the pile at the end of my "run" I would raise the plow blade up to push the snow to the tip-top of the mound.

Running start on some piles was necessary as well. Again, partial blade widths, or with the blade raised a little bit to knock down the top of the mounds and then drag from the bottom of the pile up.

I had to build a "road" with 3/4" plywood across a muddy pasture one year. I've kept 4 of the 6 sheets of plywood and I've used them under the wheels for traction when pulling horse trailers out from snowy situations.

If your plow truck is an automatic, try using a lower gear. Build up your momentum (not lots of speed, but forward motion) before dropping the blade to plow.

Hope these tips help.

Dec. 22, 2008, 06:39 PM

some other tips (I read your other "newbie" post). If you have any ditches or sharp drop offs, get yourself some driveway markers. They sell crappy fiberglass ones that you NEVER, EVER want to touch with bare hands (they give invisible splinters), or some better ones made from ?? other kinds of plastic. Pound these along the edges where you absolutely DO NOT want to drive when plowing. the markers should "sproing" when rubbed by plow blade or snow piles.

If your blade angles, use it that way instead of front on, whenever possible. Use the straight on approach for knocking down big piles.

Get your brother to come drive your vehicle with you riding shotgun. : ) :cool:

Dec. 22, 2008, 06:48 PM
My husband can commisurate!!!! He got our truck ROYALLY stuck at my neighbor's today....Had to call a tow truck to get him out! LOL........

Dec. 22, 2008, 08:05 PM
Ya know...those floor mats inside the truck perform double duty: yank out the rubber floor mats and stuff one under each tire. Or if you don't have rubber floor mats in the truck, go yank a couple stall mats and use those. Then you can try rocking it out.
Or put it in neutral, place a stall mat on the hood and drape it so it hangs down over the grill and front bumper and nudge/shove it out with the other truck.
Can you roll it at all? Enough for a half of a tire rotation in it's stuck position? If so, you can get tire chains on it. Those should improve your traction a *whole* lot.
Is it a pickup? If so start adding some serious weight in the bed...4wd doesn't grab with the back tires so much if there isn't any weight making the tires bite into the footing.
My fave method is just using a tow chain and the tractor...my husband is well know for getting anything with an engine in it stuck everywhere. He sank my freaking F250 front tires until they were no longer visible! :eek: Not 5 minutes after I told him to not drive it past the paddock gate because that area was deep soupy mud. :sigh: The little 33 hp tractor pulled the truck out as if it didn't have anything behind it. :D

Dec. 22, 2008, 08:31 PM
Get your brother to come drive your vehicle with you riding shotgun. : ) :cool:

:sigh: :sadsmile: Alas, he's 5 hrs south... :no:

Thanks for all the tips! I think I just got too cocky and too ambitious. Did the 'necessary' stuff then wanted to plow a nice big swath across the back between house and barn. That'll learn me! :lol:

Gabz, what do you mean by that with a plow? Angled? I know *exactly* what you mean with a snowblower... but the 'first run' has to be full width, no??

Dec. 23, 2008, 05:02 PM
If you picture a fountain, with many arcs from the base, that's how to plow. If you can do a few short "to the side" kind of pushes, then you begin to clear an area to manuver the vehicle. If you angle the blade, then you are rolling snow to the side, rather than trying to push so much in front of you.

When you keep the blade straight, you are pushing too much snow. If it's really deep, the snow will go over the top of the blade and under the blade and build up between the blade and the vehicle. Plus, you'll smooth the surface where you have plowed but it will be deep... killing traction.

So start with angled arcs to clear areas, then use the blade in a straight position for cleanup and knocking down high piles.