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lookingforluck

best atv on the ice

32 posts in this topic

HELLO ALL, looking to buy a atv for primarily ice fishing, I have always been a honda fan but I know the market is very competitive. What do most guys use and just as a side note what is a thought, what are peoples experience with a Suzuki Vinson 500?

THANKS< LFL

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I just got a used (92 Kodiak) last year. It's a 400 with 4x4. I think as long as you get 4x4 you are good to go. You can also post this down in the ATV forum and probably get better views on the machines.

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Honda although a good reliable machine is lacking because they don't have a differential lock so it is not a true 4 wheel drive . There are times out there you may want this feature .I drive a 2008 Yamaha 400 Big Bear and have found it basically unstoppable but there are others that have the locker and I'm sure their brand does the same .

TD

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I'd take that bet. I plow snow banks 5 feet high with my sportsman 4x4 with no chains, no problem! I've tried with my dad's 2wd honda with chains and the thing would not even push a foot of snow without getting stuck.

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I have a 500 sportsman and was thinking of getting a side xside, how do you like yours?

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I would take that bet any day of the week too and I plow alot of snow without chains . And yes I have chains but only put them on when I'm dragging heavy things across glare ice .

TD

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Well I love my 450 Honda. I don't know about the locker thing with the 4 wheel drive but I can tell you that I pull my fish house out with no problem and my fish house is 8 x 27 and its empty WT is 5600 lbs and I know a lot of the other wheelers can't do that because of the independent suspension. And I plow alot of snow with mine with a huge county plow on the front and it does ok with that. This year am going to try not plowing with my chains because I have a brand new drive way and the chains really hacks the concreat up

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if pulling a fish house and not doing much trail riding, would it be better to get a atv without IRS? I know this is like a marcum vs. vex question but which AYV runs/starts best in the cold and which should you stay away with, also any years that are better than others

Thanks

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I have only had one 4 wheeler and thats my Honda, but as for starting in the cold, I will say this. mine is a 04. 2 years ago I think my starter when out and I have had no need to fix it because it starts every time 1 or 2 pulls no matter how cold it is out side even after riding in the back of my pick up on the coldest of days , And they don't get much lazyer then I am so if it had a problem starting in the cold I would have fixed it a long time ago,But I just use mine for plowing and for icefishing thats the only time it gets used.And of course deer hunting.

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ANY EXPLANATION FOR THE RANGER? I AM CURIOUS TO WHY YOU FEEL THIS WAY, AS I HAVE NEVER OWNED ANY ATV BESIDES AN OLD 3 WHEELER.

THANKS, LFL

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Nothing wrong with your Honda grandad but there may come a time when you will need or want a true 4 wheel drive system and in this day and age the only one that hasn't gone to it is Honda . When I'm in deep snow or slush locking the differential and having 4 wheels biting compared to the Honda 3 wheels can make the difference between walking home or riding and yes I have a winch as well.

Trust me I could have bought the fanciest bike with EFI and even power stearing etc and I chose this one for it's solid simplicity that I can get running or mobile under all conditions but I was not going do without true 4 wheel drive if I had a choice .

I could care a less what anybody drives personally but 4 biting wheels for me seems better and why I did not buy honda because they don't have it .

One lad here says a two wheel drive with chains is better than a 4 wheel drive without . I'll still take that bet . LOL

TD

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Its the Honda 450 Forman I do belive. And trapperdink you could be right but I haven't had a problem yet, the only thing that I don't like is that if the battery goes dead you can't shift grears Alternator must not be powerfull enough But you can still manually put it in gear And the Honda is also shaft driven no belts. I have seen my friend walk home because of a belt.PS and another thing I don't like about the Honda is that its SLOW no matter what 53mph weather my FAT friend is on the back or not dosen't matter 53 mph there must be a govener on it.

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Yeah my bike is shaft driven too and it's a manual transmission with a semi auto clutch and heah it's slower than yours grandad . LOL. It might hit 50 mph on a long downhill stretch like maybe mount everest and screaming for me to let off on the gas. LOL

The low first gear in it is super low and 2nd is more like 1st for most machines but no belts or the like to worry about . She's not built for speed but then again neither am I anymore but she will get me there . LOL It could use one more gear at the top end .

TD

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And the Honda is also shaft driven no belts. I have seen my friend walk home because of a belt.

id rather change a $35 dollar belt every couple years than a whole tranny

last atv sled pull I was at a guy on a honda asked what I was gonna pull using a rubber band, and his tranny broke on his smile

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PS and another thing I don't like about the Honda is that its SLOW no matter what 53mph weather my FAT friend is on the back or not dosen't matter 53 mph there must be a govener on it.

Trust me, you're lucky that you're getting 53 out of it. I had the same wheeler and so did a buddy of mine, and we never got past 50 on ours. The Foreman is a 100 percent simple work machine. Not a speed demon for sure, but reliable as you'll find.

As for the original poster, if you are using it solely for hauling a fish house, get a SRA machine, otherwise IRS is better in deeper snow and gives a much better ride. A lot of people like the Vinson, the 500 is a stout motor that seems to be quite reliable. The only problem that I've heard about the Vinson is that some of the earlier models and some belt issues on the autos, and autos and manuals had reverse gear failures.

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The first year Vinson had a couple issues.

1) getting in and out of gear. You had to rock the machine back and forth to get it to work sometimes.

2) steering is very light and could get an inexperienced rider into trouble REAL fast.

3) the first model year was breaking motor mounts on the frame.

4) some machines were delivered without heat tape on the plastic and the fenders were melting above the exhaust.

When Suzuki realeased the manual transmission Vinsons, they received high praise from both the magazines and owners on how smooth the tranny was. Once they fixed the other issues, the Vinson was an excellent machine.

Don't worry about what people say about the Hondas. They are one of, if not the best machine out there. Nevermind the talk of the 4x4 system on the Hondas either. If you're only using it for ice fishing, it's a non-issue. As long as all 4 wheels are on the ground/ice it'll work just fine. Honda has several models that will serve your purpose.

All manufacturers make great machines. Each within their own niche.

The biggest deciding factor is how much you want to spend.

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There are so many brands out there and so many used ones for sale ( I paying for any new vehicle / boat / atv ) because of value lost after you leave the lot. just trying to narrow down the search, I like the idea of machines without belts (SHAFT DRIVE). What brands have shaft drives and/or SRA?

Thanks for the great discussion, LFL

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Where can you find that lockout bar. I think it must be similar to the "swisher" idea I used for my plow on my old chainsaw Polaris 400. And for what it's worth, the guys I know with the heavier wheelhouses are talkin' the straight axle in the rear. Thanks!

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