The Lawndozer! DIY Dirt/Snow Plow Blade


When I originally built my DIY Receiver Hitch Snow Plow, I mentioned that I wanted to be able to use it for multiple things. Well, I finally came up with another use case for it… Meet ‘The Lawndozer’

First, every invention starts with a problem. I had a rather large pile of dirt from removing 3 raised garden beds that I didn’t want to move by hand. So first I started with a tiller to loosen up the piles and get the dirt fine for compacting.

The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
Dirt from the three raised garden beds that I needed to move.

Loyal readers will remember that I fabricated an overkill receiver hitch for my zero turn mower earlier this year, and that a couple of years ago I created a DIY receiver hitch snow plow.

Today is the day that the two unite to become one awesome machine: <deep announcer voice> The Lawndozerrrrr! </deep announcer voice>.

The next step is to get it mounted up to the mower. I built this for my car/van that have rear bumpers. The mower doesn’t have any overhang, so I was able to slide the plow further into the hitch then mark and drill an additional receiver pin hole. By having the plow further in it brings the weight a couple inches closer to the rear tires of the mower so the plow isn’t hanging out back so far.

The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
Marking a new hole with the plow ~2″ further in. I pushed it in till it hit the muffler then pulled it out about 1/2″ to accommodate for movement.
The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
I then drilled it out stepping up in drill bit sizes until I got to the required 5/8″ (sharp drill bits are awesome, check out my article: DIY Drill Bit Sharpening)

Next step was to hook up the electrical. The plow already had some Anderson style connectors on it, so all I had to do was make some pigtails to fit my mower. Luckily I am a hoarder, so I had two jumper cable style leads with ~2ft of cable that I harvested off a dead jump pack. I cut off the ring terminals and crimped on the Anderson connectors. Now I can just pin it in the receiver, hook up two jumper cable clamps and be on my way!

The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
Connected to the battery with some jump pack leads. You could use an old set of jumper cables or something similar.

This is the first time I have actually turned the blade around for pushing as I had designed it many years ago. It worked out pretty well and now I am glad I went through the extra effort to set it up this way.

The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
My helper is ready to go!!
(notice the proper safety gear, gotta teach them early!!)

The plow has a remote control so there are no additional connections needed besides power and ground. I found that I could hold the remote in my hand and still be able to operate the controls at the same time.

The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
Let’s plow!

I very quickly learned that if I tried to cut more than a couple of inches at a time I would just spin tires. After a small learning curve I got the hang of it and was able to move the pile pretty quickly.

The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
I started with the blade angled so I could push the dirt away from the air conditioner and down the hill some.
The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
I then straightened up the blade using the adjuster. If you saw my drill in the storage pocket on my mower it just has a 3/8″ drive socket adapter to screw the threaded rod and adjust the blade quickly.
The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
Pushed up to the side of the house where I can then tamp it down to get it ready for covering with weed barrier and rock. (no more erosion!!)
The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
All spread out and ready for some manual raking and tamping.
The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
Raked and compacted (good enough 😛 )

There you have it! I spent a good hour drilling holes, hooking up cables, and setting up the plow so I could save myself 20 minutes of scooping with a shovel.
Was it worth it? Hell yea!

The Lawndozer - DIY Mower tractor plow dirt snow blade
Good work Lawndozer!

There is something to be said for stretching yourself and your abilities to try new things. I enjoy working on stuff way more than doing the actual work the tool is for. As a bonus, now I have a tool I can use for future projects. If I really need to push large quantities of dirt, I could always just hook it up to the van or a pickup and do a lot more with it. The mower was convenient in this case because it was tight quarters.

Let’s be reasonable and also acknowledge that I realize this isn’t a skid steer. I expect this blade to be able to push snow and loose dirt, that is about it. If I need to do something heavier I would obviously have to rent/buy something more substantial.

Questions? Comments? Cool related projects to share? post below!
Now YOU, go out and build something!

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