How good is a 420 Rancher for plowing snow? | cvetitula.ru
Honda Rancher Discuss all models of the Honda Rancher 350/400/420

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post #1 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 03:32 PM Thread Starter
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How good is a 420 Rancher for plowing snow?

Hey all,
I love my '07 Rancher 420. Am considering one of two things:
1. Buying a 48" (as opposed to a 60") snowplow blade for it.
2. Buying another ATV already with a plow, or buying another ATV that might be better suited to plowing...then buying a plow.

I will basically be using this just to do my driveway and a few other neighbors driveways in the winter time...basically to give me an excuse to ride it in the winter!

My basic question is...how good of a platform is the 420 for a snowplow? Too light? too hard to shift between 1st and reverse? Does it work out great? Is it awesome? I'd just like to hear your opinions.

I'm kindof considering buying another ATV anyway and if the 420 is not suited well for plowing, I would make sure that whatever I bought (even if not Honda) would be more suited for plowing.

Things I am thinking about:
1. I have a winch, but have "heard" that the manual operation of a plow is faster and doesn't wear out the winch.
2. Shifting between 1st and reverse a lot has got to be tedious (I have the ES model).
3. Is my 420 heavy enough?
4. Do I need a 4x4 with Diff Lock for the front?
5. Am I going to tear up my prestine 420? (I like my 420 A LOT).

Am considering a Yamaha Grizzly 600 or 660 or so, just for the heavier weight, and for the ease of shifting with gloves on between forward and reverse. I have no actual experience ever plowing so I am open to all opinions. I currently only have the one atv, and am extremely happy with it, but have been toying with buying another anyway as my family wants to get into it. If the 420 is not suited for plowing, I'll make sure I just buy one that is!

Thanks in advance!!!

Randy
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post #2 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 04:08 PM
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Snow removal is one of the reasons I bought my Rancher. We had a record amount of snow last year and it worked great...two full blown blizzards, more than two feet of snow in one instance, over a foot in another. I had no problems with getting stuck, starting, winch problems, or anything else...I did have to use 4WD though. Last year I had a winch with wire rope and OEM tires. This year, I have synthetic rope and Mud Lite XTR's...I expect another flawless performance...it'll be interesting to see how much difference the XTR's do for my snow traction.

Now, I do have to point out two things...both of which you already hit on. The first one is the reverse thing. Fortunately, this has a simple fix. To make it easier to switch between forward/reverse, I simply loosened the jam nut on the reverse switch cable and adjusted the brass barrel so the cable would be tensioned all the time. This way, all you have to do is stop, hit your selector switch to change gear, and be on your way. I only run it this way in the winter though...otherwise it's adjusted so you have to do it the slow way. The other 'issue' is with the wire rope on the winch. When used to raise/lower a plow, it puts a pretty tight bend on the cable as it crosses the fairlead roller and goes straight down (how extreme will depend on the plow mount manufacturer). This put a couple 'kinks' in the rope that never did come out. Kinks is not really a good word though...more like permanent bends. The synthetic rope will not have this issue.


2009 Rancher AT with IRS
Warn RT25 Winch
Cycle Country plow
12" ITP SS108 wheels
25" ITP Mud Lite XTR tires

Last edited by Green; 11-11-2010 at 04:11 PM.
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post #3 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 04:13 PM
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The first one is the reverse thing. Fortunately, this has a simple fix. To make it easier to switch between forward/reverse, I simply loosened the jam nut on the reverse switch cable and adjusted the brass barrel so the cable would be tensioned all the time. This way, all you have to do is stop, hit your selector switch to change gear, and be on your way. I only run it this way in the winter though...otherwise it's adjusted so you have to do it the slow way.
This is the first thing that I do to every Honda ATV that I buy and I haven't had a problem yet. It's so much easier and quicker than fumbling around for that red button.

Most 4-wheeler problems are caused by a loose nut connecting the handlebars and the seat!!

You only need two tools in life -- WD-40 and duct tape. If it doesn't move and should, use the WD-40. If it shouldn't move and does, use the duct tape.
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post #4 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-11-2010, 07:08 PM
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you shouldnt have any trouble plowing snow with your 420. they are good work or play machines

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post #5 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-12-2010, 08:55 AM
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Not far from you. (Wyoming)
I have a 54" plow on my 420 and this set-up works great for me.
I pull the reverse cable out and put a spacer around the cable, like Green, I only use this in the winter.
With this set-up, I can plow more snow faster than my neighbor and his 550 Grizz. It is kinda funny to watch him fumble, trying to raise his plow and shift gears with one hand.
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post #6 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-12-2010, 10:05 AM
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Here is a better shot.
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post #7 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-12-2010, 10:05 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies. Do any of you have the A-arm mounted plow system from cycle country?...I haven't seen any bad reviews, but it just doesn't seem like a solid mounting system for a plow to me...but then again, this is my first plow and maybe it's all right?

What brands/mounting systems do you have? I like the newer front mounted or a/arm mounted systems because you can lift the blade much higher. However the old underbody mount sure seems secure to me.

Any replies appreciated...I know...I'm overthinking it as usual.
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post #8 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-13-2010, 03:57 PM
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I have the Warn plow with the center mount push tube. I also went with the Warn electric lift, so I could have the winch free if I needed it to get out of a big drift. If the lift ever gives up I can still hookup the winch in less than couple minutes. I likes the Warn over some of the others cause it came in 54" verus 50 or 52" on most the other brands. If you go less than 54"; when you angle it all the way; you are running over unplowed snow.
I hear that on the 420 you can't use the arm mount with some winches.
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post #9 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-13-2010, 11:04 PM
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snow plowing

I plowed all this snow with my 420 rancher with a 48" blade
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Had a 2007 Rancher 420 4x4 with ES stolen. If you find the thief shoot on site. Thanks
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post #10 of 110 (permalink) Old 11-14-2010, 08:01 PM
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I plow my 1100 foot driveway with my 350......Sometimes we get the rock hard drifts here in MN. Gotta break it up by bombing through it a few times first. I don't see a problem.
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