In wide swaths of the country, snow in the winter is a surety in life – like your favorite team just missing the playoffs or Uncle Walt making a nuisance out of himself at Thanksgiving dinner. Again.
While we’ve no advice for handling Walt (or your team, for that matter), there are plenty of tools with which to help clear away piles of winter’s worst. Some folks keep a set of shovels on hand, while others take to the drifts with a snarling two- or three-stage snowblower. Arguably sitting atop the heap of snow removal – short of having your own backhoe – is installing a plow on the front of your ATV or side-by-side.
After all, our rigs are purpose-built with four-wheel drive and the ability to get through bogs and mud pits; why not use them to take care of winter’s white stuff as well? Adding a steel blade plow to an ATV or UTV turns the machine into an all-weather tool – one which can be an easier sell to the other half of a marital unit who may be carping about its initial cost.
Anyone who has ever followed behind a road plow on the highway (at a safe distance, of course) knows that the pros have blades on their trucks which tend to push the snow they are accumulating off to the side instead of plowing it forwards into eternity. A fixed flat blade might be useful on very small driveways or a path – and spaces that diminutive can probably be cleared by hand, anyway – but larger areas will absolutely benefit from having the snow plowed at an angle.
Moose Utility Division has the answer. Called the RM5 Hydraulic Turn Kit, it allows users to actuate your Moose plow from right to left without needing to exit the cab of your vehicle. Sealed and self-contained actuators do the job, providing an easy thumb switch operation that even your teenage gamer can figure out. And, as a bonus for equipment operating in these types of tough conditions, the switch enclosure provides a sealed environment for sensitive electrical components such as breakers and fuses. In other words, the thing is unlikely to go ‘pop’ the first time it is exposed to water or ice – as it may often be when plowing snow.
The kit is a bolt-on installation, designed to work with the RM5 plow system from Moose Utility Division catalogs. If you’ve one of these installed already, you know the ATV/UTV onboard winch is deployed to raise and lower the plow, an action which is independent of this RM5 hydraulic turn kit. Anyone else just getting into the game should budget for those items on top of this product. It’ll be worth it the first time you don’t have to endure hours of back breaking snow removal after Old Man Winter dumps a foot of misery in the driveway.
Engineered and assembled in America, the RM5 Hydraulic Turn Kit includes the hydraulic package (obviously) and all the proper mounting brackets. This is light years away from the one-size-fits-none kits which often require either creative use of a hammer to line things up properly or skillful deployment of a welder to create brackets which simply end up looking like deformed Cheez Doodles.
Also in the box are electrical bits like the wiring harness and thumb switch. Again, this saves buyers from sourcing generic items at their hardware store or from the depths of their toolbox. Yes, your author also has several coffee cans in his garage filled with old wiring and switches, but knowing that Moose Utility Division includes the proper kit greatly cuts down the chances of something being amiss with the electrical component of this install. After all, using switches and wires left over from last year’s derby car can be a sketchy proposition.
We’ll inject a note of caution here, saying that buyers who are not totally comfortable with wiring or mounting brackets should rope in a buddy to help with installation of this kit. The process is very straightforward, but a second set of hands never go astray. The product comes with a full set of instructions – and not the kind which have been translated through five different languages before getting printed in haphazard English.
As a nickel’s worth of free advice, try plowing your driveway or parking lot from end-to-end, using the RM5 Hydraulic Turn Kit to angle the blade towards the same side of the area being cleared with each pass. This should scoop up and push away any residual snow left over from the previous pass, avoiding the telltale lines of snow which can be left behind with each run. Also, while the very first swath being cleared with the plow will obviously be almost entirely the width of the plow, try pushing away just half a plow’s width in subsequent passes. This will be easier on your machine and might get the job done more quickly since a slightly higher speed can be maintained.
Plus, with these tools, clearing snow is almost fun! This kit is priced at $1,064.95 and may be found on the Moose Utility Division website.