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Iambjm

Snowmobile choice

39 posts in this topic

So the hubby and I are thinking about a sled, and a friend suggested that we think about a long track with 2 speeds and reverse. We are really novices about them and don't really want to walk into a dealership totally dense about our choices, any suggestions, recommendations, hints etc.? We are both 62 and would mainly be using it for ice fishing and some mild trail riding.

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i would take a look at either a classic tourning polaris, or a two-up ski-doo touring sled. you can get them with reverse and electris start and the new sleds ride really nice. just tell the dealer what your looking for in a sled and they will set you up right.

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Another one to look at is the Arctic Cat 660 turbo four stroke touring sled. The DNR recently went with that model for the CO's so that says something. Also, if you do your homework and buy used (try that c r a i g listing) you can save at least 40% over new on a sled that is a couple of years old.

BTW, you don't need or want a two speed gearbox. just get a machine geared for "touring" use.

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I am rookie sledder for most part. My wife and I just bought two 2002 sleds, one a Yamaha Venture 600, which is a two up touring, 2 stroke. First weekend with it, and it is nice. (The Polaris XC 500 is a totally different sled - I like it, but two totally different beasts...)

First thing, definitely get reverse and definitely get electric start, no questions asked. I am posting some pics and some ramblings on a new thread, since so many folks here help me when we were looking, and they said they wanted to see some pics, ha!

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yes reverse is a MUST HAVE!!!! 1 outta 3 of our sleds have it and its awesome! i just pulled some muscles in my back draggin the other 2 pigs around last night crazy

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Can't say it enough...REVERSE...REVERSE...REVERSE. You wouldnt buy a car without it, why buy a bigger, heavier sled without it?

On that note, I agree. A four-stroke sled will serve you well and most(all?) come with electric start. A two up touring sled will be your best bet it you're only looking at purchasing one sled.

Yamaha, skidoo, polaris, and cat all make 4 strokers. Check the classifieds and go to a dealership. Get the wife down there and sit on the sleds, make a note of what you like and dont like, go VROOM VRRRROOOM a few times, and go from there.

Good luck and have fun. There are plenty of 2 stroke used sleds out there as well.

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Barb I will have Lisa forward you a email that I received from my friend wit a great deal on a 2007 Artic Cat. Make sure to get helmets and maybe a mic system. Heated shields are also nice.

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I dont even use my reverse that often. Its worthless on anything but a groomed trail or packed road anyway.

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I definitely like reverse. It you have a tilt bed trailer nothing easier than putting it in reverse and backing off. Pulling sled off a trailer is a PITA. No jumping off the sled to turn around on trails if you need to.

Doesn't work great in deep snow.....but it comes in hand many other times. Not required.....but nice to have.

Being that the original poster is 62 years old, I would image they will be mostly trail/lake riding and would rather use reverse than to lift up the sled to turn it around or pull it off a trailer.

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A great sled for mainly ice fishing and some trail riding would be a Bearcat. Any of the newer models would be great for what you described. Plenty of power, good handling, and can handle deep powder or slush conditions easily.

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I'd recommend something with electric start, reverse, and possibly a 4-stroke for ease of use as well. Gas it up and away you go! Not sure on all the exact models but the Yamaha Venture is a very nice sled.

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I dont even use my reverse that often. Its worthless on anything but a groomed trail or packed road anyway.

its not really intended for use on trails,more for puttin into sheds/storage or backing off trailer,but if ur stuck or something in deep snow reverse wont get you out!

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my studs rip my snowflap off when I back it off a tilt trailer

I can't deny that....mine has some nice gouges! I usually just stand off to the side while I back it down. Still easier than pulling.

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I dont even use my reverse that often. Its worthless on anything but a groomed trail or packed road anyway.

then obviously you dont ride snowmobile much because anyone that rides much knows that having reverse is the way to go when getting gas, or putting it in storage, or taking it on and off the trailer. its not ment for deep snow.

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let's stay on topic here and not debate the merits of reverse when boondocking and who rides more. SledNeck puts on more miles in a year than most guys do in their sleep.

Reverse is a must for a two up sled. the new four stroke touring two ups push 700 lbs wet weight. Even a younger buck like myself struggles to wrassle that thing around. I think a late model T660 Touring would be a good fit. Great sled for ice fishing, and it has enough torque to pull a portable around no problem with a passenger on. I have the non-turbo and it is great for ice fishing on solo trips. If you plan on riding two-up for the majority of the time, I would suggest the turbo. Pretty much all the newer two-up sleds come with all the bells and whistles, electric start, hand and seat warmers, remote start, etc.

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Just two more cents... regarding power on the sleds, you don't NEED overkill. Last year we used my bro-in-laws '87 phazerII to haul 6 guys and the shacks around the lake fishing. One trip we even abused it with two guys on the sled (not a touring sled) and pulling an otter and a big jet sled full of stuff, AND two fat guys in that! ha! We probably looked like a clown car coming donw the lake. But it did the job, and that was just an old weak unmaintained sled. So any of the newer touring sleds would work just fine I would think - and by newer I mean 2000 or newer.

Though the 4 strokes would be cool is $$ is no object smile I would also look for one that has a decent option for a rack of some sort behind the seat.

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Wow, thanks for all the info. It's one of the great things about the forum. We are still up in the air about which way to go, I keep thinking it would just be cheaper to get tracks for our ATV. Budget is kinda tight right now, but we are at least going to follow up on some leads we have. I am real leery of letting the hubby go trail riding all alone as he is partially disabled and is not allowed to be lifting anything over twenty pounds, plus if he should get stuck he would be lucky if he could walk a block. I would probably use it a lot for ice fishing, as I would go out everyday if there wasn't so much snow.

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Unless you have an RER then reverse adds weight to a sled.

I dont like backing mine into the garage cause the studs tear up the floor really bad. I drive straight in and put the sled up on wheel dollys and when Im done fixing everything thats broke on it after the ride I turn it around so its ready to go again!

I dont do that many miles in a year. I didnt even break 3000 last year....But its the quality not the quantity.

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polaris widetrack

artic cat bearcat

yamaha venture

ski doo gsx touring

these are the sleds that would fit the bill nicely they all have wider tracks and longer tracks. Now its all up to the buyers what they want on it. reverse,12v outlit,carry rack,hitch......

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I sure love that T660 grin

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I think we need to "qualify" the buyer here a little bit. I am thinking you guys are in the 40-50 something crowd. Proably not needing to go 100mph or off boondocking somplace where you should not be.

Sledneck...something tells me they may not ride like you, you remind me of me a few years ago.... Electric start and reverse are a must for the older crowd.

I am still relatively young..29..big guy at or around or maybe even over 3 bills and strong as an ox. My next led will have electric start and reverse because dragging sleds gets old.

I do a little hard riding, but most of my riding is more leisurely on the trail or ice fishing on LOW in Canada.

T660's and Bearcats are the sleds of choice for the guys I fish with....not sure that I can bring myself to get one yet, but I may in a few years.

The Ski-doo MXZ Renegade looks like a nice crossover sled for me. I can still play or boondock, but it is set up nice for deep snow and slush on LOW too. The Bombardier engineers have done wonders with the fuel economy on their 600. The 16x136 track gives the same footprint as the 15x144 track so it is a little nicer on the hard packed trails I ride too. Now I just need to talk to the wife.

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The Ski-doo MXZ Renegade looks like a nice crossover sled for me. I can still play or boondock, but it is set up nice for deep snow and slush on LOW too. The Bombardier engineers have done wonders with the fuel economy on their 600. The 16x136 track gives the same footprint as the 15x144 track so it is a little nicer on the hard packed trails I ride too. Now I just need to talk to the wife.

I agree! I have an 06' Renegade....and it's a great sled for given reasons. I have the 600sdi and get good mileage to boot. I will say that electric start is not "required" on the 600 SDI engines....it always starts on the second pull.....third if it's REALLY cold out.

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T660's and Bearcats are the sleds of choice for the guys I fish with....not sure that I can bring myself to get one yet, but I may in a few years.

I'm right there with ya! Funny how a guys priorities can change in just a few years. Current sled is a ZR 600 EFI and I bought that when I did a lot more trail and ditch riding. Love the sled and I've adapted it quite well to work on the ice for fishing. One thing I regret over and over again is that it does not have reverse. Drive on/Drive off trailer would be one thing but I'm getting sick and tired of pulling sleds off my 2 place tilt backwards. I had one come off too fast on the ice and almost run me over one time. Banged the shins up pretty good when that happened.

Next sled is going to be a Bearcat no doubt!

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Electric start is not a big deal for most men. Most women simply lack the upper body strength to start a sled. My wife is fairly stong for a woman and she can't start a cold sled and once in a blue moon she can start a warm sled.

It gets old starting and dragging her sled for her all the time, electric start and reverse are a must for women.

ps.. Don't call me sexist if you are some huge granola eating Amazon that can start your own sled, most women can't.

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