When my son was about 9 years old we took him to Tahoe and taught him skiing. Besides having a blast in the snow he was extremely impressed with the large snow plows that were clearing the roads in the mountains. When we got back from our trip he wanted a snow plow toy. He was very specific about what he wanted and we decided to make this a weekend project. After some brainstorming, he decided it had to be a large dump truck with a removable (!) snow plow and a functioning sand/salt spreader. I figured if a 9-year-old could come up with it a 35-year-old should be able to help him build it. I scavenged parts I had left from when I was a kid. A King size Matchbox Lesney Scammel dump truck with a broken chassis and a Siku Faun Snow plow, also about 150 scale, were chosen for parts.
The Siku Faun truck was the donor for the plow and the plow attachment. The frame of the Lesney Scammel needed to be mended with epoxy and powdered zinc as it was broken in half. I believe we used some thin pieces of steel as reinforcement. The plow attachment of the Faun truck was grafted onto the Scammel's front end. I used M2 threaded brass rods to make studs and M2 brass nuts I had left over from my mode-building days 20 years earlier. The chassis was modified for increased ground clearance because the plow mount would have dragged on the ground.
The sand/salt spreader was scratch-built from styrene. The spreader attachment can slide slides back and forward in the truck bed and thus the dispensing slot is adjustable from 0 to about 5mm, allowing a controlled release of sand/salt. The spreader dispenses sand/salt as soon as the bed is tipped.
While I drilled the required holes and cut the hardware to size, my son did most of the assembly and most of the paint job. He wanted the truck to look old and used, all weathered and grimy looking. Since we had been building military model kits for a few years at the time, he knew weathering techniques, how to drybrush, how to do washes, and how to use powdered pastel chalk.
A few details were made and fitted: extra headlights on the top of the cabin and plow, mirrors, the broken hitch was replaced, and a few decals were added to the spreader unit.
I found these pictures online and they show the kind of toy trucks we used: Siku V337 (Faun Snow Plow) and Matchbox K-19 (Scammel Tipper)
Sadly, I did not document the project when we were building it. Here is the finished project in its current state 12 years later. The model is 7 inches long with the plow attached and 5 inches without it. I don't remember why there's an etched metal grille instead of the original plastic grille but probably the plastic grille was missing and I had a suitable photoetched metal part. I'm very sorry but I could not find any snow!
The sand/salt spreader unit that we made. The decals were printed on a color laser printer on waterslide decal paper and sealed with clearcoat.
The plow can be elevated and lowered.
The plow can be detached. This was a requirement. The plow locks in place and won't fall off even if the vehicle is turned upside down.
Adjustable dispensing slot
From left to right the arrows point at
- a brass replacement shaft and brass nuts and washers that were installed because the original part was worn, resulting in a loose plow
- stud and nut holding the snow plow attachment in place
- two studs, washers, and nuts that hold the bottomn plate on.
I know this Matchbox wheel loader was used to load sand onto the bed of the dump truck. The wheel loader has a few mods, too.