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Atv decisions.....

Post in 'The Gear' started by WellSeasoned, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

    Here are the two I am thinking of purchasing , maybe. I have had good luck with polaris for many years now, and is currently my first choice. The yamaha has more standard equiptment for the price. Important things for me is independent rear suspension, power steering, and downhill assist. Besides for woodworking in the woods, its the main source of transportation for the shack up north, and the trail riding I enjoy. Honda would be on the table, however, the auto shift feature is poor for trail riding, and the backup button push to shift doesnt appeal to me. What y'all think?

    http://www.polaris.com/en-us/atv-quad/4-wheeler/sportsman-550-eps-sunset-red/features

    http://m.yamahamotorsports.com/ModelDisplay.aspx?l=4&uid=2390&mid=646&nav=f

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  2. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    The Yamaha would be my choice of the two.

    I wouldn't completely commit yourself to IRS if you are doing a lot of heavy towing. Not that it won't do a good job...but I think a SRA does a better job towing. The IRS squats a little too much for my taste, especially when going uphill with a load in tow.

    Not sure what they mean by "downhill" assist. Engine braking? That should be standard on every model.

    I have a Honda Rubicon that has excellent engine braking, is an automatic, tows like a mule, and is a pretty comfortable trail rider.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  3. Fi-Q

    Fi-Q Feeling the Heat

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    Have you look at the BRP? Most of the guys around here are moving the brp and the outlander......
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  4. Ram 1500 with an axe...

    Ram 1500 with an axe... Minister of Fire

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    Dammmm, I wish I could get one of them, gl with it....
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  5. MarkinNC

    MarkinNC Minister of Fire

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    I considered a Polaris very strongly but feared those rumors about little problems had some truth to them, at least they have Japanese engines in them. I hear the Yamaha products are very good as well, tanks!. When I found out I could get a brand new Honda Rancher 4x4 from the dealer in Chattanooga TN (they wholesale their bikes and get customers all the way from Kalifornia their prices are so good) for less than 5k, I bought it. I like a manual shift and I think gears are stronger than rubber bands. Manual shift with gears is the downhill "assist." Perhaps you have an operator in mind that does not know how to shift? As to the IRS, I dont think its all that and a bag of chips and (I read) it is not the best option for trailer towing which I do. I have ridden many ATV's over the yers with solid rear axles and never bemoaned the ride or was obstructed in my travels. I have never heard anything but rave reviews about power steering on ATV's.

    Everybody has these great ideas about what the greatest features are for a ATV and I have mine. I did find it interesting Honda Ranchers, which still use gears, is the best selling ATV. I personally dont think you need anything bigger than a 350 either but it is hard to find one that small. My 420 pulls a trailer full of wood up a pretty steep hill, in the woods, in the mountains, with power to spare. There are guys on the Honda ATV forums with 10,000 plus hours on their ATV's. All the brands are probably fine, but I like real gears. Good luck shopping and perhaps challenging your position inspired some thoughts:)
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  6. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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  7. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    Of these two . . . personally I would go with the Yamaha. Both would have decent rides (although the Polaris probably has the better suspension). It is my personal opinion that of the two, the more reliable machine would be Yamaha (but in fairness Polaris has got a lot better over the years -- I just personally have been on many rides where the folks that have had issues with their machines were Polaris ATVs.)
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  8. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    I cannot remember if they had brake assist or power steering, but MarkinNC brings up a good point . . . Honda is now making a Rancher with IRS if you are adamant about getting IRS and favor Honda ATVs.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  9. maple1

    maple1 Minister of Fire

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    I'm currently using a 1997 Arctic Cat 454 4x4 in the woods in my spare-time-wood-scrounging-keep-fit program.

    It's manual transmission with hi-lo range, has more of a utility side to it. Works great even after all these years - I've got a little combo trailer/bucking rack geared up that I haul around 1/4 cord of wood out at a time on.

    It doesn't do the best on trail riding since it's quite low-sped, but my main point is I'm surprised I haven't seen AC mentioned more in these threads given my experience and it is made in the USA.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  10. USMC80

    USMC80 Minister of Fire

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    Grizzly is one hell of a machine. Never cared for the Rubicon
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  11. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

  12. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Don't overlooked the used market. Plenty of lightly used machines out there...not sure where you are located but these are pretty common...usually guys trading up to a side-by-side:

    http://philadelphia.craigslist.org/mcy/3892893790.html

    That's about the same number of miles and hours I had on mine when I got it....not even broken in yet.
    WellSeasoned and USMC80 like this.
  13. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Curious as to why not...
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  14. USMC80

    USMC80 Minister of Fire

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    Had the Grizzly, Kodiak and friend had the Rubicon so we would ride together a lot. No big reasons really, just liked the ride better on the grizzly. We rode mostly on extremely rough terrain where i felt more stable on the grizzly (especially if I had a passenger). Neither the Rubicon or Grizzly ever had any mechanical problems.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  15. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    Good enough. Just wondering if there's something I should look out for.

    I'm on the other side of the fence in that the SRA actually feels more stable than an IRS bike. Less "body roll" when in off-camber situations.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  16. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

  17. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

    Also, the 3 quads on my want list, in there, the wife wants a new one too but smaller. We are roughly looking at costs around $12,200. There is roughly around $1000 rebate total, only tax and registration, but brings it back up to around $12k. My questions is.... If anyone here knows, how much will a dealer reduce the price, buying 2 new quads. I'm hoping total price out the door around $10k +/-

    What you guys think?
  18. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    I think it come down to whatever you are used to and comfortable with. I grew up riding SRAs and they are very predictable for me going around corners, up hills, etc.

    I'm sure they aren't any more or less tipsy than a IRS bike, but it feels that way to me.

    I think there's more to it than personal preference when it comes to towing. The SRA bike's rear end will actually rise pulling a heavy load...the IRS bike will squat down. The IRS bike will also carry all of the tongue weight on the suspension whereas the SRA bike carries it directly on the axle. So, heavy load squats down the IRS bike, then when you get moving it squats it down even more making it lighter in the nose...something you don't want when going uphill or braking. Not saying the IRS bike can't do the job, just doesn't do it as well.

    EDIT: The other downside (beside a firmer ride) to SRA is they are more prone to wheel hop. This is really only an issue when your wheels are spinning a lot on firm ground and you aren't moving forward.
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  19. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    You're going to get the best pricing on a cash and carry deal, so it may be a better option to buy one and finance the other, or buy them both outrigh. If they don't budge on price have them throw in some goodies (winch, plow, helmets, etc). This is going to vary a lot by dealer. I can't help with actual $ value much, but they can generally do better on cash deals, and can do better on accessories in lieu of taking the price down.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  20. bogydave

    bogydave Minister of Fire

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    Buying 2,
    Thought about a side by side & a single ?
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  21. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    We have a couple of neighbors who have Polaris and like them. One of them had a Polaris several years ago but had big problems with it so I'm surprised he got another one but this one is a utv. Other neighbors use theirs only for recreation.

    We've had 3 Yamaha atvs and all were trouble free with one exception. A couple years ago we got a Grizzly and love it. It has plenty of power for pulling and also works great plowing snow. For those who like to go a bit faster, it is not the fastest but ours will go about 67 mph but I've had it there exactly one time. With the windshield on, that will slow things down to around 55-60 mph top end.

    I wondered about power steering and laughed when they came out with it, wondering why anyone would need it. Well, we have it now and I wonder how I got along without it. For me the best thing is when backing up a trailer. Power steering is fantastic then because I actually sit sideways on the seat and steer one handed. Power steering makes things much easier. It also is nice when plowing snow.

    We had considered a Honda each time we bought and the only reason we did not go for the Honda is they are so rough riding and with a bad back, that is not such a good choice.

    I can also vouch for the independent suspension. That makes riding so much more enjoyable. Sort of like comparing riding in a Cadillac vs an old Volkswagen.


    If you are riding these machines for recreation and riding in cold weather, a windshield makes things a whole lot nicer. If you want to top this off with heated handlebar grips, the comfort level jumps up a lot. I'd hate to be without either now that we have them.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  22. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

    Bogy, I have friends with side by side, they are nice, but too much like a jeep to me to own. (Which I had for years, and had some fun)

    Dennis, I plan on keeping this thing for many years, so im thinking ahead on irs and eps.

    Will be a few weeks while I work out the final decision on what to buy and how much $ to spend. Wife is wondering why the quad I want is worth 3x more than the value of her old subaru outback. We will have a financial meeting tonight. A foot and back rub may be in order to make the sale to her, lol :D
    Just kidding.... I may have to downsize a bit, we'll see
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  23. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

    Lukem- thanks for the tips.... I just need to test ride everything and see how it all feels.
  24. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    I feel the same way Lukem . . . always felt more stable to me . . . but as you suggested . . . it probably has a lot to do with what you start out with since I know folks that ride Polaris ATVs and they never have mentioned feeling top heavy whereas I always feel as though I am about to be bucked off the machine when I've ridden their quads.

    That said . . . if you ever get a chance try a Grizzly . . . on the Polaris I felt as if I was riding on top of the machine while the Grizzly I felt as though I was down into the seat a bit more -- and it still had the comfortable IRS.

    And never say never about IRS . . . I am giving some serious thought to getting IRS on my next machine simply for the better trail riding experience. Looking heavily at the Rincon or Grizzly. Only two problems as I see it: a) the large expense and b) my 2001 Foreman is still going strong with 6,426 miles on it so I really have no reason to trade up.
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  25. WellSeasoned

    WellSeasoned Guest

    I read that the grizzly model when in 4wd, the power steering turns off. That would be no good when the rock crawling starts. I'm not sure if its the newer models though.

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