Retail Truck Dealer Installs Snowplows

What is a truck dealer doing installing snowplows?

For those readers who live in the Southern or Western States and others, it may be a surprise that a truck dealer would install dump bodies and snowplows! In the Northeast US, it is not as uncommon as you may think. One good example is Robert Green Chevrolet Truck Division in rural Monticello, New York, 100 miles from the hustle of New York City!

In the beginning; in 1986 Robert Green Chevrolet/Oldsmobile was installing Meyer snowplows from the service bays. Robert’s father founded the company in 1968. His son, Rob Green looked to expanding the truck mounted equipment business, but had no intention of starting a full-line truck equipment distributorship in the beginning; until 1990 most of the work was performed after hours.

Starting as a distributor and installer of snow and ice control equipment, the truck equipment business moved to its own property in 1993 and the following year became a full-line truck equipment distributor and a separate corporation. The five-acre property contained a building with a two bay shop area. Additions were completed updating the old building to an eight bay shop. The facility provides 10,000 square feet of shop and office space as well as a 30 x 18 x 18 foot paint booth.

The truck division's main product lines are Meyer / Diamond, Boss and Fisher snowplows, Swenson and Monroe snow and ice control, Crysteel, Reading, Venturo and Truckcraft bodies; Thieman and Tommy Gates, Weatherguard, Eby Trailers as well as Alum-line Racks, Onspot Tire Chains, and ETI aerial buckets. Their truck business is roughly 50% commercial and 50% municipal sales according to Rob Green, President. Green's normal business radiates out about 200 miles from Monticello, but they upfit vehicles for businesses as far north and south as Maine and Virginia and as far west as Chicago. They strive to provide quality customer service; the shop has extended hours and is kept open on Saturdays. Because contractors work five days a week, they are able to get their equipment in for repair or service without interrupting the contractors business.

Robert Green Truck Division offers complete snow plow and salt/sand spreader lines from multiple manufacturer suppliers. The sales people listen carefully to the customer before directing them to a certain snow equipment brand, the customer has many choices at Robert Green, and many bring their own experience and brand preferences for equipment.


I will write more about these brand differences in the future, but I have found snowplow brand preference to be very regional in the US; the Northeast area is heavily influenced by blade features including “trip edge” designs offered by Fisher, Boss, Meyer / Diamond and others. The trip edge design assures that the blade remains upright while the edge encounters an obstacle during plowing; the bottom edge absorbs the impact. The customers in southern New York, the Mid-Atlantic and Mid-West states lean more toward a “full trip” blade design such as Western or Meyer and others. The full trip blade “trips over” when encountering an object. Many argue that the full trip is easier on the truck while others are more influenced by the belief that the full trip is not nearly as efficient as a trip edge design in heavy snows. By offering customers all these product options they are appealing to all these “mindsets.”

So how is business today? Rob says it is very good, not great like a few years ago, but good and probably better than a lot of companies in the business! I am sure a lot of that can be attributed to Rob’s vision in starting a truck equipment division. He says his son (Gen III) is now involved in the business and loves cars and trucks like Rob does! Rob sees a great future ahead for the company!

He says that much of the success they have had has been because of the choices they made in vendor selection and standing behind the products they sell. As an example of a great product and proper maintenance, he says that they have many 20 year old original Diamond Snowplows still being used by their customers!

He also attributes much of the company's success to the help and guidance that they have received from the National Truck Equipment association (NTEA). Although snowplow installations began in 1986, their interest in the truck equipment industry developed more fully when they attended the NTEA Equipment Show in 1990. They used the show to find many truck equipment vendors to expand the business into a full line distributorship. In addition, the NTEA has provided them with the knowledge of federal regulations and standards that have become their standard practices in installation of all their equipment. It should be noted that Rob is a past president of the NTEA and is a well respected leader in the truck equipment industry.

Robert Green Truck Division
210 Bridgeville Road
Monticello, NY 12701
Phone: 845-794-0300

Guest post by Steve Taylor. Steve is a consultant in the Truck Equipment business with over 30 years in the snowplow and truck body manufacturing business. He specializes in the design and quality/reliability field and may be reached by email at steve@truckarchitect.com. You may visit his website at www.truckarchitect.com.

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