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Author Topic: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts  (Read 462 times)

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Offline nybhh

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Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« on: May 29, 2021, 08:41:01 AM »
So my wife has decided she wants an electric golf cart to get around the property.  The main reason is for near silent running. We can barely hear each other screaming over the tractor so I completely get that and it would be advantageous for hunting and wildlife viewing as well.    We have a pretty good network of trails around the property but I am concerned about ground clearance.

I know they make lift kits for golf carts and there is a much larger second hand market for them but it seems like that despite the much higher price tag, an electric UTV would be a lot more practical.  

Does anyone have any experience with the electric UTVs or golf-carts for light farm transportation?  She does like the rear-facing back seats of some golf-cart setups for passengers and I don’t think I’ve seen that configuration for UTVs and the 4-person models just get so big and expensive you might as well just drive a truck at that point.  We have the tractor for real “work” so I don’t think I would use it much for that although I suspect she would use it for hauling stuff around a lot more than the occasional passenger.

Edit:
I know Polaris makes an electric Ranger and Polaris seems to be one of the favorites around here but I just came across the Tracker Off Road EV which has the golf-cart style rear seats and is about a grand less than the Polaris.  Any experience with that brand?
Woodmizer LT15, Kubota L3800, Stihl MS261 & 40 acres of ticks trees.

Offline btulloh

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2021, 09:07:10 AM »
I have an electric golf cart and use it around the farm a lot.  I like the stealth of electric, and except for replacing batteries every six years, it's cheap and easy to maintain.  Mine isn't lifted and I get by ok with it, but I really should put a lift kit on it.  I put a trailer hitch on it and can use it with small trailers and light loads and also use it just to move larger trailers around.  It does a surprising amount of work considering the limitations.  

I keep evaluating the UTV options and for me and the expense involved, they just don't make sense, although I keep thinking it might.  Between the golf cart and the tractors I've pretty much got it covered.

There are a lot of variants among golf carts and some would be more useful that others.  Mine is just a standard golf cart.  A small bed might be nice, or the rear facing seat.  I've also thought about bow and gun racks and such, but never got around to it.  I just use it.

I know people that have picked up Cushman carts used for a good price and used those.  They are made for work duty, but I don't know what might be available for lift kits, etc.

So there are options out there from golf carts to UTV's etc.  The basic golf cart has been very useful for me and so far I can't really find a good reason to take the big $ step up to a UTV.  Just my personal experience.  Which ever way you end up going I think you'll be adding a useful tool.  Looking forward to seeing what you end up with.  
HM126

Offline btulloh

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2021, 09:18:56 AM »
One thing to add:  I bought the GC from a local dealer as it was coming back from lease to a golf course with a whole bunch carts.  He offered me an as is price which was very good.  No regrets - never a problem of any kind.

It of course was snow white with chrome hub caps.  For stealthy hunting or game viewing, it was like a bright beacon in the forest.  I painted the body with some rattle can OD green and painted the wheels flat black.  Big improvement in the stealth department.  Blends in well.  The paint has held up very well, which surprised me, so it was an easy conversion from blinding white to basic camo green.  Simple, cheap and effective.  I surprise turkeys all the time when I'm traveling the fields and edges.
HM126

Offline Old Greenhorn

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2021, 09:25:42 AM »
After our conversation about this yesterday I did some looking around last night. Casting aside the junk offshore offerings there are a lot of options out there. For comparison, that Tracker has nearly identical towing, carrying, and size capacities and weight to my Mule except that it has no dump box. Being able to put tools in the back I think would be really helpful for you, also the dog would like to have a secure riding position. Consider a roof and windshield of some sort, it helps keep it cleaner inside and can be handy, especially if you added a plow for clearing in the winter a year or so down the road. A winch is also quite handy.
 Never an easy decision with these things, is it? ;D :D
Tom Lindtveit, Woodsman Forest Products
Oscar 328 Band Mill, Husky 450, 372 (Clone), Mule 3010, and too many hand tools. :) Retired and trying to make a living to stay that way. NYLT Certified.
OK, maybe I am the woodcutter now.
I can work with wood, but I am NOT a Woodworker, yet.

Offline nybhh

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2021, 09:32:55 AM »
Thanks, I’m sure a paint job would be on the honey-do list if we end up with a white golf-cart, lol.  I also do like how low maintenance they are as well, especially if it is “hers” and all she has to is plug it in between uses and check the tire pressure every once in a while.  

Other than a few large rocks along the trails I’d need to attack with Dexpan, I think ground clearance might be ok but we have a lot of ups and downs here so I’m also not sure how well a 4x2 would be able to get around.

No, its never an easy decision and not having much experience with them on top of not being the “primary user” also adds some complications.  I CAN tell you that I like the price of a lightly used golf cart way more than a new UTV.
Woodmizer LT15, Kubota L3800, Stihl MS261 & 40 acres of ticks trees.

Offline btulloh

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2021, 09:33:09 AM »
Of course the best answer is “buy one of each”.  :D :D  

Offline Magicman

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2021, 09:41:12 AM »
We now have four gas Golf Cars to use on our property, etc.  We have over 7 miles of trails with the furthest point being over a mile from the Cabin so there is no way I would even consider an electric car for our particular situation.  I can only imagine having to drag/pull a heavy electric GC back to the Cabin with dead batteries.  During our family events such as July 4th, the GC's run all day long which would not be possible with electric.  We have two Club Cars and two Yamahas and have never had a mechanical failure, just gas and go.

They are barely audible and there is no comparison between the noise level of a gas Golf Car vs a 4 Wheeler or Side X Side/UTV.
Knothole Sawmill, LLC     '98 Wood-Mizer LT40SuperHydraulic   WM Million BF Club Member   WM Pro Sawyer Network

Never allow your "need" to make money to exceed your "desire" to provide quality service.....The Magicman

Offline Patrick NC

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2021, 09:57:49 AM »
I'm in the side by side camp on this subject. More power, ground clearance, and of course costs way more. Our use is more recreational as we travel around to different trail systems a good bit, but it gets plenty of use around the property too. Never worry about dead batteries or getting stuck. Will tow a 2000# trailer and carry 1200# in the bed. Or if you need to you can unfold the seats from the bed and carry 2 more passengers. 

My brother has a 48v ez go golf cart and has tried to use it for yard work without much success. The added strain of heavy loads and trailer towing is hard on batteries, controllers, and drive motors. Not to mention they are very heavy and get stuck in soft ground easily. 
Norwood HD36, Husky 372xp xtorq, 550xp mk2 , 460 rancher, Kubota l2501, Case 1845 skid steer,

Offline btulloh

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2021, 10:58:12 AM »
Gas golf carts are amazingly quiet and the "gas and go" aspect is a good thing.  Laying out 1k$ or so to replace the batteries isn't my favorite thing either, but electric has worked out good for me in spite of all that.  With electric, an inexpensive digital volt meter across the battery bank and a knowledge of the discharge curve gives you the ability to avoid running out of juice at a bad time.  Usage patterns make a big difference too.  For me, charging once or twice a week is all that's required.  The thing has a lot more range than I'd expect.

Like everything, it all just depends on the job you need done and the other equipment you already have.  Since I have tractors and a FEL for real work, I don't need much more than to just get around on it.  It's speedy and easy to jump on and go and I can carry enough stuff to get small jobs done (or get out to a tree stand).  

I keep thinking I should have a UTV, but every time I evaluate the situation, it really is more of a want than a need - by a long way.  I keep looking for ways to justify the UTV, but haven't come up with a justification yet.  When I consider I got the golf cart for $1500 15 years ago, and the price of UTV's now, I can't come up with a legit reason to buy one.  But I keep trying!!  Maybe if I bump into a deal that's just to good to be true I can rationalize it.

Anyway, this is a good discussion and hopefully you'll find the answers you need make the decision.   
HM126

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2021, 12:02:30 PM »
someone gave me 2 of the old john deere 5 wheeler gators for free.  Bench seats, dump bed and trike front tire.  Years ago i stripped a few raymond electric forklifts and have all the parts for a 24v or 36v rig. 

I figure when boy gets older we will build one into a mail fetcher. Solar panels on a big roof. 


I stripped a cushman industrial electric flatbed too.  Pretty well built. 
Isaiah 63:10

Offline 21incher

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2021, 04:46:53 PM »
Bad Boy makes a nice one like a 4wd golf cart that seats 4.
I bought my wife an electric golf cart several years ago and we love it for the yard. She has Sjogrens and Chemical sensitivity Syndrome so gas engine fumes make her sick and it was our only option. Not good at all in wet conditions or on my firewood trails. Replaced the original ribbed tired with lawn mower tires that helped some but the solid rear axle and only about 3 inches of travel at each corner easily makes it loose traction on any uneven surface. I bought it used with bad batteries and they cost a bundle to replace but should last 6 years. It will go about 20 miles on a full charge with just a driver on firm ground. With 4 people and softer ground it's lucky to go about 5 miles on a charge. I put a roof rack on it but soon found out a couple 2x6s strapped on make it easy to tip over on corners. Very narrow so not good on sidehills either. We use it everyday in the yard and would buy it again. Right now I am looking for a side by  side that will allow me to bring out firewood safely. and be good for trails with the grandkids. OGH I drove over to Bass pro to look at the ones you talk about and they just didn't look like they were made with as heavy duty parts as a golf cart that is made to take commercial abuse everyday and had a solid rear axle that's not good off road. In December Polaris has a nice lithium ion one coming out with a really good range. This is ours a 2014 Club Car Precedent that came from a guy that sells the fleets.


 

 

 

 

  
Hudson HFE-21 on a custom trailer, Deere 4100, Kubota BX 2360, Echo CS590 & CS310, home built wood splitter, home built log arch, and a logrite cant hook.

Offline nybhh

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2021, 08:03:24 PM »
Yea, you guys have given me a lot to think about.  I think the range on an electric will be fine, we’re only on 40 with less than a mile of trails and I rely on the tractor/FEL/grapple & carry-all for most of the chores and projects, this would basically be the wife’s runabout. 

We are planning to build a little off-grid “glamping” cabin back in the woods and whatever we end up with will be great for shuttling gear back and forth between the house and that.  Probably need to get out and kick some tires
i suppose.  

Thanks again for the feedback.
Woodmizer LT15, Kubota L3800, Stihl MS261 & 40 acres of ticks trees.

Offline Nebraska

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Re: Electric UTV / Off-Road golf carts
« Reply #12 on: May 30, 2021, 09:35:01 AM »
My hunting partner 10 yearsish ago bought a  bad boy buggy. He doesn't own it anymore. The quiet and stealth were very nice. The utility for actual use in the bush well..... (mom said if you don't  have anything nice to say). If you are using it on manicured trails up close to the house not working it hard gardening etc it could be good. I am on lots of farms. I see Rangers, Gators, Mules and  few diesel Kubotas. Most of these get worked every day in the mud and manure hauling spraying etc.  It really depends on the type of service in my world the electric one fell way short.


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