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Old 10-26-2012, 04:51 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Another new guy.

Hey everyone, I'm looking for advice on a snowmobile to buy. I haven't ridden since I was a kid with the neighbors sled but I have fond memories and I'm looking to give it another shot this winter. Probably the last snowmobile I road was a mid 90s Phazer and it was a great machine, however since then I have moved to the quad crowd and have an old King Quad and recently grabbed a left over Can Am Renegade 1000 XXC so I'm pretty good as far as tossing machines around in the mud (and snow )

Three things I'm concerned about right now, I'm a big farm kid, 320 lbs, way over 6' and I'll need a sled that has really good rear suspension or has the ability to upgrade to a heavier rear spring. I like to play around, I spend about 70% of my time on my quads standing up just because I like hitting those big bumps real fast and can throw the weight of my machine around easier so that's where the good suspension comes in.

I don't know what kind of power I'd need, I imagine a decent sized engine for my size, I can put my Renegade on 2 wheels in sand with holeshots so I don't believe I need that kind of power and I figure I can do some clutch work. I'd rather go faster at low end then do extreme speeds.

The last thing I'm looking at is track length I can see myself doing a lot of deep snow ditch banging with my snowmobile and playing around in grass hollows in my fields which would be deep snow also. With my size I'm worried about my sled trenching so I was considering a longer then standard track. However I'd still like it to be manageable if I ever do decide to head further up north, I frequent Black River Falls Wisconsin on my ATVs and could see possibly taking a trip up there or even to Wyoming in the future.

Okay that was a lot to take in I know but I'm really looking to get back into the sport and all my friends ever can guide me to are Polaris sleds. I will agree Polaris makes amazing new sleds but I'm getting the brand shoved down my gullet and I want to see what else is out there. I know the older Cats are suzuki under the hood and my King Quad is literally unstoppable so maybe a Crossfire?

I've got about $4-5k to spend. What are the thought on higher mileage sleds like 5k+ what would I need to look for mechanically problem wise on a used sled?

Thanks so much for any help I recieved I can't wait to hit some snow again it's been TOO long.
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Old 10-26-2012, 05:08 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome and Happy Trails

A CrossFire would be a good choice with the stock 128" track and even better with the 141". The biggest thing to watch for is cracked bulkheads on any brand due to the lighter materials being used these days.
There is an advantage to having the same brand as what your buddies ride. You can take advantage of their knowledge and borrow parts and brand specific tools.

Also, keep in mind availability of service/parts.
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Old 10-26-2012, 07:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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well.....here we go.

im 285lbs, 6'11" tall. id for sure get a long track!!
and then id put 2up springs on rear. i did that on my gade,
rides way better with my big butt on it. lol
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Old 10-27-2012, 06:00 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Also look at the Ski Doo REV chassis. You sit more like a motorcycle on those, and they have the SC10 suspensions in them. All brands make a sled that would fit your needs.
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Old 10-28-2012, 04:11 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the input and welcome. You are definitely right about the part swapping and general machine knowledge RJ I never thought of that. I don't have anything against one brand or another I just like to be extremely thorough in my research before purchasing.
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Old 10-28-2012, 09:22 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Welcome. Another way to find out is to actually go shop around and try them on to see what fits you best and you feel comfy on.
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Old 10-29-2012, 06:42 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'll probably be hunting diligently on sledswap and craigslist as I believe the asking price on dealers used sleds to be way way above even retail reselling according to NADA. Most dealers want 20-30% MORE for a used sled and they aren't even in good condition, most have 5k+ miles easily. Luckily my last quad was a 12 hour trip to pickup so as long as the fuel is worth the deal I don't mind driving half a day for a good machine.

I have two new questions for you all if you'd oblige me.

I was wondering what the capabilities of a mountain sled are like in the ditches and if need be on trails? I've been looking around and found a couple good deals on a newer M8 and M1000 and I realize I'd need to change out the track and probably the clutching but are mountain sleds (talking 155" and shorter) that bad for ditching/hayfields and hard pack?

Secondly from your experiences what are the major "looking points" for when buying a used sled and that if it sounds too good to be true it probably is mentality. I suppose there's got to be a thread around here somewhere with that information.
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Old 10-29-2012, 07:17 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Long tracks lose big time when it comes to running on the twisties and on ice. The track is great for flotation, not so good for turning or hardpack. And if you hit bumps, that's really hard on the rear suspension when you land tail first.

Along with the other sleds mentioned, consider the Polaris RMK Assault. It's got a more robust suspension that is designed to hit the bumps hard.

When I'm looking at a used sled, maintenance is key. A well-maintained sled looks it; things are clean and oiled, and just look like the owner cares. A well-maintained sled with 4000 miles on it may be a much better value over the same sled with half the mileage that was beat to death by a rider that didn't care.

Make sure to put the sled up on it's side to look underneath. That will really be an eye opener regarding how the sled was ridden. Look for big dents in the bulkhead under the engine, the bulkhead is very expensive to replace/repair. Look at the skis to check for wear on the carbides, too.
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Old 10-29-2012, 07:18 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Mountain sleds tend to have a narrow ski stance and often have no sway bar, making it easier to roll them up on one side for better turning capabilities in deep powder and easier sidehilling. Trail sleds tend to be wider and usually do use a sway bar for better stability when cornering at speed. There are a lot of crossover sleds on the market that perform reasonably in both applications, but are generally better at one than the other. Picking the sled that's right for you depends on where and how you plan on riding. From what you've written so far it sounds like an Arctic Cat Crossfire or a Polaris Switchback Assault would be right up your alley.
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Old 10-31-2012, 09:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Thanks for the feedback, your tips have definitely helped me out just identifying what is useable for me and what would be better suited for other areas of the country.

I have one last question *knock on wood* I found a paid of Switchbacks that look like they have been really well taken care of, one is a 700 with 2500 miles, the other is an 800 a year newer with 4500 miles however the top end has been rebuilt, as well as shocks and new carbides etc.

Now there is one thing between these two sleds, the 700 is about $500 more then the 800 because of the mileage but the 700 is about a 2 hour drive from me, while the 800 is an 8 hour drive. I really like all the mods he has put on the 800 while the 700 is completely stock. So my question is, as someone who knows nothing about high mileage sleds, if the 800 has 4500+ "trail" miles in 3 years would the top end rebuild be something I should be worried about or is that like a refresher for the engine?

Thanks again I'm hot on the trail for my new sled.
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Old 10-31-2012, 09:38 PM   #11 (permalink)
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A top end rebuild is pretty much par for the course on a two stroke motor with 4500 miles on it. The fact that it has already been done, along with some other maintenance items is a good thing. It sounds like it's worthy of at least having a look at it, assuming you don't mind the trip.
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Old 11-01-2012, 07:01 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Unless the 800 has had the wide bearing fix, I would go for the 700.
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Old 11-11-2012, 02:56 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Okay I have another question for you all, basically I'm on my 3rd possible sled now. The first one I was looking at was a 06 crossfire I had told the gentleman I would come by the upcoming weekend to check out the sled. That was a Thursday, the next day he left a message on his voice mail saying he'd had it on ebay and it sold (for less then I was willing to pay). Then this week I was going to look at a Switchback Dragon on Sunday, I sent half a dozen emails to the guy over a week and told him I'd give him a call when I leave for his house. He emailed me Saturday afternoon saying he had sold the sled to his best friend that morning and thanks for understanding.



I'm about to use a vacation day from work to get this done before winter as my purchasing luck has been horrible apparently, sleds keep getting sold out from under me if I wait until the weekend.

Both of those sleds were in good condition as far as used sleds go, now I'm looking at a 05 Renegade Rev the only thing is it has 4200 miles and has never had any reconditioning done. I know I said I would drive anywhere for a deal but after clearing my weekends to take trips to look at sleds only to get backlash at the last minute I'm looking more local. The Gade is 50 miles away, what am I looking for with that type of mileage on a sled at that age and what would it cost to recondition it as far as rebuilding the engine to make it tip top again?

Thanks!!
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Old 11-12-2012, 07:58 AM   #14 (permalink)
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If it should need a top end, you probably can get away with about $200 is you do it yourself.
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'90 Wildcat Project in progress.

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1980 Indy Trail 440 (for sale)
1980 AC Pantera (donor engine to the 90 wildcat)


http://www.dcdrifters.net/


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Old 11-12-2012, 03:44 PM   #15 (permalink)
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It was rebuilt before 4k, I went it picked it up today before work it is VERY clean.

Time for tweaking.

Thanks guys for your assistance, I really appreciate it and I look forward to using this forum fully!
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Old 11-12-2012, 05:22 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Congrats! Nice looking sled, hope it works out great for you!

That is quite an upgrade to what you rode last... that 800 has a BUNCH of power and the speed can sneak up on you FAST!
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Old 11-12-2012, 05:30 PM   #17 (permalink)
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That's a good looking sled, you should get a lot of fun out of it.
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Old 11-12-2012, 06:11 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BC_Dan View Post

That is quite an upgrade to what you rode last... that 800 has a BUNCH of power and the speed can sneak up on you FAST!
Yeah I didn't want to get a 600 with my size and I thought I'd try an 800, my lineman frame should slow it down a little bit but like my 1k cc quad, I love fast, blood pumping acceleration.
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