Compact Equipment

OCT 2018

Compact Equipment is a magazine dedicated to equipment owners and operators of small, nimble, tool-carrying construction, landscape and ag equipment — such as skid steers, mini excavators, compact tractors, generators compressors and beyond.

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Page 28 of 63

U tility vehicles (or UTVs for short) have become a popular choice among contractors, landscapers and homeowners to move people, tools and ma- terials around without the size or cost of a pick- up. They're quick, compact and with the right attachments and options can tackle lots of applications. But the work (and fun) doesn't have to stop just because the weather takes a turn for the season. Add a broom, snowblower or plow on the front, and you're ready to clear some snow. Throw a salt spreader on the back, and you have the ultimate wintertime workhorse. "A good first step is to determine what surfaces you are going to be salting, whether it be parking lots, driveways or sidewalks," says Justin VanderHeyden, product man- ager for John Deere Gator utility vehicles. "Broadcast-type spreaders are good for spreading salt in a wide pattern and are ideal for parking lots and driveways. Drop spreaders lay a precise spread width, which is good for sidewalks be- cause the salt won't reach the turf and potentially cause damage. You want to look for a spreader that has good ca- pacity and an auger above the spinner to help move large particle material such as rock salt to the spinner. Addition- ally, it's important that your spreader is made from quality materials like stainless steel and poly that won't corrode due to salt exposure." Thanks to the popularity of UTVs and their ever-increas- ing uses, there are plenty of spreader options to choose from when outfitting the vehicle for winter work. When looking at sizes and capacities, VanderHeyden says rear hitch/tailgate-mounted broadcast spreaders are typically around 3 cu ft, cargo box bed mounted broadcast spread- ers can range from 10 to 12 cu ft and drop spreaders can range from 3 to 6 cu ft. Prices for spreaders can range between $800 up to $6,000, depending on the type of unit. However, before committing to a particular spreader, Andy McArdle, direc- tor of product marketing for Douglas Dynamics (the par- ent company of SnowEx), urges buyers to look at their in- tended uses before spending money on more than what they may need. "When purchasing a utility vehicle salt spreader, or any other utility vehicle attachment, it is important to under- stand the price vs. value proposition," he says. "If you are using the vehicle for casual/personal use, there may be ar- eas of the attachment or product where you can sacrifice quality for price point. If you are a contractor, earning a living in snow and ice, make sure you understand the val- ue each equipment manufacturer brings to the table and trust in the brands that have built their reputations on reliability, durability and performance." Getting to Work After a spreader is selected, it's time to get the unit at- tached to the UTV. VanderHeyden explains the process. "Hitch, tailgate and drop spreaders typically require a mount that ties into the rear hitch and vehicle chassis, while bed mounted spreaders are mounted directly to the bed of the cargo box and secured to the cargo box tie downs," he says. "All spreaders require a controller that will activate the broadcast spinner, adjust spinner or rotor speed, and open and close the material gate." 29

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