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Discussion Starter #1
Any other sledders on this forum? I did it a few times as a kid, excellent memories of letting my parents get pretty far ahead on the lake, then trying to see how fast I could go. My visor flipped open at 90+mph and almost ripped me off the back of my sled, lol.

Anyway... then growing up, all cash went to cars/girls/parties, and once I was out of school and working, I still dismissed it as a giant waste of money. During the winter, instead I would plan ski trips out west, ski trips in the midwest, just ski as much as possible. Then my GF broke her foot, at the beginning of fall with a 6 month prognosis on 'heal'ing (zing). What to do?

Buy ****ty old sleds and yeet up in da nort'woods ya hoser

So I wound up finding a 93 Arctic Cat Cougar 440 for $500 owned by an older lady who barely rode it (girlfriend) and I picked up a 91 Arctic Cat Wildcat 700 with a trailer for 500 bones. Super cheap. Why? Oh it was sitting outside for 10+ years and didn't work. When I checked it out I brought along a compression tester which showed even/high compression, so **** it, let's do it. Here's the build for the wildcat:

https://imgur.com/gallery/a9liI

Have a lot crazier stuff now almost 10 years later... but she will always be my first.

Anyone else ride death machines in the winter?
 

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Yep. Got a crew that we Backcountry snowboard with snowmobiles. Lots of powder days. It isn't easy but it is worth the effort and $$ to not have any ties to the ski resort industry.
 

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I don’t have one but I’ve always enjoyed borrowing friend and family sleds. It’s great run around here, because there is always plenty of ice to ride on if they trails don’t have enough of a base.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
@simple, that's awesome man, always wanted to do that. Plus you can do sick lines on stuff that isn't even accessible from lifts. How does it work riding two people tho, does everyone ride two ups or what?
 

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Oh yes. Have had quite a few sleds, usually short tracks as I value handling above all else. It's mostly trail riding in NY. I prefer the snowcross style sleds with big suspension to hit moguls hard. Currently on a MXZ 600R X-RS. At ~130hp it's plenty, but having had a few 800s I'm kind of wanting to go back. Next up is probably MXZ 850 X-RS, with the big screen guages.

Because car forum, Tow Rig. Still use the Cayenne to tow, but have since replaced the trailer and the GTI.


A train of sleds and a train.


A great powder day.


Here's current sled opening day the year I got it. Barely enough snow to ride didn't stop me from getting halfway through break in. :laugh:
 

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So I wound up finding a 93 Arctic Cat Cougar 440 for $500 owned by an older lady who barely rode it (girlfriend) and I picked up a 91 Arctic Cat Wildcat 700 with a trailer for 500 bones. Super cheap. Why? Oh it was sitting outside for 10+ years and didn't work. When I checked it out I brought along a compression tester which showed even/high compression, so **** it, let's do it. Here's the build for the wildcat:
I started out on POS sleds too, 10/10 would recommend. Learned so much, and appreciate the new stuff about elebenty times more. Just uh...anybody looking to get into it that way...carry tools and provisions and a tow strap and don't go anywhere alone...breaking down is kind of a given. :laugh:
 

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I so wish I could own another. We had them as kids in the early 2000's. I had a 97 Arctic Cat ZL440 and my stepbrother had a 97 Z440. We watched Slednecks way too many times and then went out riding. At some point I ended up with a 99 SnoPro but it was rough so it didn't last long. It's been 15 years since I had a sled. I still really want a 2000 Z 440 SnoPro. They were the coolest sled in the world to me back then.

My wife and I have talked about heading up north and renting one for a couple days. We should probably do that this winter.

 

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@simple, that's awesome man, always wanted to do that. Plus you can do sick lines on stuff that isn't even accessible from lifts. How does it work riding two people tho, does everyone ride two ups or what?
3 at a time believe it or not. Helps that everyone is around 150 lbs and has good balance One on each board and one standing over or sitting on the seat.

No one rides alone. Have to have a partner to ski in the backcountry. Safer that way.

We run up to 3 snowmobiles this way. 6 on the slope and 3 driving. Most of the time it is 3 snowmobiles and 5 people. We like our system.

Sick lines sometimes but a lot of the winter is is mellow stuff. Avalanches are no bueno in Colorado. So we wait until it is stable.
 

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I wouldn’t say we’re serious by any stretch but we have a few sleds up north to fart around on. Usually do 1-2 long weekends a winter. FIL and I keep threatening to run IL—>WI—>MI to hit three states, but haven’t done it yet.

Here’s what we used to have, 2 of these and a 1-seat model

Old snowmobile by Chris Stack, on Flickr


This year we got these, 2-3 year old ex rentals. 2x white, 1x yellow.

New sled1 by Chris Stack, on Flickr

New sled 2 by Chris Stack, on Flickr

Hope we have a good snow year to abuse these things :laugh:
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Oh yes. Have had quite a few sleds, usually short tracks as I value handling above all else. It's mostly trail riding in NY. I prefer the snowcross style sleds with big suspension to hit moguls hard. Currently on a MXZ 600R X-RS. At ~130hp it's plenty, but having had a few 800s I'm kind of wanting to go back. Next up is probably MXZ 850 X-RS, with the big screen guages.

Here's current sled opening day the year I got it. Barely enough snow to ride didn't stop me from getting halfway through break in. :laugh:
Nice dude! I've heard that new chassis soaks up bumps amazingly well!

If we're posting all the sleds we've had, I'll go.

After I wrecked my wildcat, I bought a 99 ZR600 'project'. This was still when I had no monies, so the thing as just beat. I stripped it down, repainted the chassis, redid the suspension, rebuilt and polished the carbs, I actually threw money and parts at this thing,



Here's the build thread:

https://imgur.com/a/vs20H

BUTTTTTT.... this thing just ALWAYS let me down. When I first took it out, I trailered it to a lake for ice drags and was going to race it. Started up perfect, but wouldn't move an inch. Primary clutch was completley frozen... what's weird is I rode it the year before no issues. Banged on the clutch, borrwed oil from someone to try to get it loose. Nope. Didn't have the tools to pull the clutch, so I paid a shop, that was another $500-600 because I had to get an aftermarket clutch. Then I took it out again, got it running, rode to the trail head, hit the gas, and POOF, all the lights went out. Wasn't sure if it was the stator or voltage regulator or what, but I was just pissed. The wildcat or the cougar had been dead nuts reliable and this thing was just giving me issue after issue.

So from there, I found an insane deal on TWO 2007 Arctic Cat Jaguar Z1s. My first 4 stroke sleds.



Fast? Yeah a bit more than a 600. Soaked up bumps like a BUICK. Seriously could put 200+ miles on these in a day and be fine. BUTTTT..... they just... they looked awkward... and they did NOT handle. I could feel that weight in the corners, and maybe if I weighed more I could have muscled them around better, but it felt like the sled would just do whatever it wanted and I was just along for the ride. I missed hanging off the side of the sled in corners, and the seat was way too wide, so in order to do that I'd have one foot on the running board and the other hanging up in the air, if that makes sense. They did the job... but I never loved these sleds. NEVER.

So last year... I bought my DREAM sled (ironically the dude I bought it from replaced it with an all black skidoo 850 that looks just like yours!)... continued when I get time to write about it. I'm so happy with my upgrade, goodbye ugly heavy twinspar....
 

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Nice dude! I've heard that new chassis soaks up bumps amazingly well!
Between the rack steering and the piggy bag shocks, it's practically a laser through rough stuff. Only issue is the G4 does seem to understeer more than the old XS chassis. I've exhausted what I'm willing to tune to make it neutral, so this season I'm excited to try out some deep single keel skis.

Sweet Z1. Careful though, too much throttle and it might pull your shoulders out of the sockets. :laugh::thumbup:

The_Real_Stack said:
This year we got these, 2-3 year old ex rentals. 2x white, 1x yellow.
At restaurants or gas stations, people might give you crap for riding 4-strokes, but it's no different than people being upset about water cooled Porsches. Those ACE motors are smoother, quieter, torquier, more fuel efficient, don't need oil added through the season, don't spew smoke, and unless somebody is doing an e-start delete :)wave:), only like 10-15 lbs heavier than a 2-stroke. Only downside is the power, but for most trail riding the torque matters more anyway. We've had 3 or 4 of them go through the family and love every minute on them. In fact if my next sled isn't an 850, hands down its a 900T ACE.
 

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Turbo on a snowmobile is more fun than just about anything. Climbing hills with the skis in the air the whole time is an unreal feeling.
 

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Oh, here's the replacement trailer. I got it mostly for a foreclosure reno project we're working on, but definitely looking forward to using it for sleds. Pace Journey SE 6x12; it will fit one sled nicely and give me some room for gear, tools, parts, and wrenching. And two small sleds in a pinch. I find that probably 85% of the time I'm only pulling one sled with my two place anyway.

 

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I grew up riding atv's and racing motocross, never had a sled but was always around them and rode friends' sleds.

I bought my first sled last winter, my best friend got one the year prior. Then his brother in-law bought one so I was peer pressured. Was a fun winter, just bought something cheap to partake.

We ended up heading out to Edmonton to visit a couple of high school friends (we're all in our mid to late 30s now) and drove to Golden B.C. to rent mountain sleds. Amazing experience.

My green 2004 F6:



Me messing around on some open water in 2019 (prior to buying my sled) on my buddy's SS (the copper sled in the previous pic). This is in the bay at a Camp we use collectively as a cottage, water is about 10ft deep:


And some shots from our trip to Golden BC. The pictures really don't do the scale of these mountains justice. Absolutely insane views at 8000ft. I want to make a trip back out there again. Seven of us flew out from Ontario, met a buddy in Edmonton then picked up the other guy in Calgary on the way. Was an amazing experience.



My sled for the trip:



This is one of our buddy's two sleds, he lent it to our other friend from high school. Who then proceeded to spear a tree through the bellypan and sever a line to the intercooler. We got it repaired enough to endure the day and trip back to the trucks. Thankfully the tree wasn't through him, we were an hour from the trucks and then about 60km from the nearest main road.






 

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Discussion Starter #16
I started out on POS sleds too, 10/10 would recommend. Learned so much, and appreciate the new stuff about elebenty times more. Just uh...anybody looking to get into it that way...carry tools and provisions and a tow strap and don't go anywhere alone...breaking down is kind of a given. :laugh:
Ironically I had ZERO issues with my first few cheap sleds. Tow strap is good for when you miss a corner and get stuck tho, for sure, lol.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I grew up riding atv's and racing motocross, never had a sled but was always around them and rode friends' sleds.

I bought my first sled last winter, my best friend got one the year prior. Then his brother in-law bought one so I was peer pressured. Was a fun winter, just bought something cheap to partake.

We ended up heading out to Edmonton to visit a couple of high school friends (we're all in our mid to late 30s now) and drove to Golden B.C. to rent mountain sleds. Amazing experience.

My green 2004 F6:

Nice, I hear that chassis is super fun, but never rode one yet.

Me messing around on some open water in 2019 (prior to buying my sled) on my buddy's SS (the copper sled in the previous pic). This is in the bay at a Camp we use collectively as a cottage, water is about 10ft deep:

I've never done that either. Had a mildly terrifying experience once where I was crossing a slushy part of the lake (thinner?) and the water hit the belt, then the sled started slowing down rapidly. Would be bad news bears if I sank one. :(

This is one of our buddy's two sleds, he lent it to our other friend from high school. Who then proceeded to spear a tree through the bellypan and sever a line to the intercooler. We got it repaired enough to endure the day and trip back to the trucks. Thankfully the tree wasn't through him, we were an hour from the trucks and then about 60km from the nearest main road.

HOLY $$$$!
 

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The last sled I rode was a fan cooled Yamaha SRV(540 two stroke twin), when it was only a few years old. It would still do 100mph.

If ever got my own sled, it would be a Thundercat 900. It is the muscle car of sleds. 900cc two stroke triple. Loud and terrible suspension, but fast.
 

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My wife and I started 6 or 7 years ago on a pair of 2008 Ski Doo summits and now I have a 2018 Summit and she has a 2020 Summit X Expert. It's amazing how much better the newer sleds are in the mountains. These things are so much fun around here. We bought ours to be able to push into new areas for backcountry skiing but most of the time the splitboards get left behind. :D
 

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18' Skidoo 850 gen 4 Renegade Backcountry, our group typically puts on about ~1300 miles between northern Wisconsin and Upper Peninsula Michigan both trail riding and backcountry.
 
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