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Author Topic: please help on atv purchase.  (Read 14340 times)

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Offline mountaineer

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please help on atv purchase.
« on: September 11, 2009, 09:21:48 PM »
I am in the market for an atv. i will use it to pull  wood around my property with a small trailer, push snow. (steep gravel driveway) and other general work stuff. nothing too crazy but i do have really steep hills. i also will trail ride as well a little. i have looked at mainly arctic cats and hondas. i have been told by the few people i have talked to to buy a honda. i haven't talked to anyone about arctic cats except the dealers. the one dealer likes them both and sells them both. he says get the one that fits your needs best.i feel both of these model arctic cats would work great. but i want to keep this thing for a long time. the dealer rep for arctic cat says that honda hasn't advanced in technology in ten years and is living off its rep. he still says its a good product though. hondas are more expensive new. arctic cat has 1.9% financing and honda has 3.99% one thing is i do have to finance. i can finance used but not as good of apr.%

models i have considered.
arctic cat 500 auto new 2008 - 5500$
arctic cat 700 efi camo 2008- 6000$ with 400 miles considered new with 1.9%
honda rincon es 2007 60 hrs. 5000$
honda foreman es 2006 500 miles 4200$

any help would be greatly appreciated. any opinions are as well. what would you do if you were me? 

    thx, mountaineer

Offline Jeff

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2009, 09:38:20 PM »
I love my Rincon!
Just call me the midget doctor.
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Offline pasbuild

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2009, 10:01:25 PM »
Hard to beat the Rincon..................I have a Polaris
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Offline Handy Andy

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2009, 10:45:58 PM »
  I have an old Yamaha, had for 14 years, still runs ok, broke the brake cable last.  Neighbor has a Polaris, breaks that belt once in a while, leaves him stuck walking out somewhere.
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Offline Tillaway

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2009, 11:18:18 PM »
I have used:
Honda, a little, worked fine not tough use it was older so no independent suspension but followed the ground well.

Arctic Cat, helped a friend beat the snot out of a 500 atv logging.  It lasted about two years of hard use before it was totally trashed, transmission and other failures.  He was running ring chains on the rear similar to a skidders just micro sized.  It was pretty darn impressive where you could go with that thing with the chains on pulling an arch.  The suspension was excellent.  I was impressed.

Suzuki,  I used a little 250 4X4 with something like three gear ranges for 15 forward speeds and locking front and rear differentials and fully independent suspension.  It was my favorite for getting around out in the woods at work.  It was light enough to pick up and get out of the stupid places I tended to wind up in.  I would buy one similar as my first choice if I went back into the private sector.

Yamaha,  Used both a 350 and a 400 quite a bit.  Given a choice I would take any of the above over these.  The suspensions were terrible and tended to not follow the ground.  They were very tippy compared to the others.  They ran good though.
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Offline tonto

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2009, 08:31:12 AM »
I had a Honda Rincon. It was a great sport quad but with out low range, it was tough to pull wood and plow snow. I bought a Polaris Sportsamn 700 X2 2 up. Helped convince wife that it was a good buy - she could go ride with me. When not a 2 seater the seat folds down and you have a cool dump box in the back. P.S. she has only ridden once in a year that we have had it! Tonto.
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Offline mountaineer

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #6 on: September 12, 2009, 08:34:51 AM »
thx tonto, that really helped.

Offline Jeff

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2009, 08:47:48 AM »
I guess I'm going to have to dig up the dozens of photos of my Rincon pulling logs and stumps and all kinds of things, including my fat butt. I have zero problems with low end torque, then again I work on relatively flat ground for the most part.

http://www.forestryforum.com/board/index.php/topic,33351.msg482157.html#msg482157
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Offline fishpharmer

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #8 on: September 12, 2009, 09:34:26 AM »
I don't think you can go wrong with Honda.  I know alot of folks that have had good service from honda.

My experience:

yamaha 3 wheelers- I pushed them to the limit.  Several total submersions.
Finally got tired of them.  Still ran. 

Suzuki- early 250 4x4.  Was a good machine if ran often.  Let it sit for
a month or two and the carb needed cleaning.

Polaris- 350 sporstman (I think).  2 stroke. Might have been a lemon.  Always something wrong.

Yamaha- 450  super dependable, plenty of power.

Arctic Cat 250-  never would idle correctly, "cold" natured.

I am sure most modern ATV's will work for logging.  It is amazing what they will do.

For what you want to do a small tractor
may work better.
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Offline Onthesauk

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #9 on: September 12, 2009, 11:06:14 AM »
I've got a 2001 Suzuki 500, don't think I'd go any smaller then that to use in the woods. 
For me, like the ability to shift in and out of 4wd, doesn't tear the lawns up as bad in 2wd when I'm around the yard.  Have seen some incredible deals on ATVs in this rotten economy.
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Offline dutchman

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #10 on: September 12, 2009, 08:32:25 PM »
I've got a 2004 450  Foreman ES. Used with an arch,it has done a great job pulling logs.
Put a winch on that has come in handy.
Plow snow it's quick and easy.
Change oil and plugs,keep battery charged,fires up every time.

Offline jander3

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2009, 01:37:05 PM »



I borrowed a friend's Honda 450 Foreman last fall to pull in logs.  It worked great and had plenty of power to move 25-30 footers (red pine) through the woods (with the log arch junior holding up the tail end).






Early this year, when it was time to purchase an ATV, after looking at Honda, Artic Cat, and Yamaha.  I decide on a Polaris.   I needed a basic machine that is tough and will hold up to constant pulling, pushing, dragging, and just about anything else I ask of it.   The 500 Polaris Sportsman (H.0.) with factory kickback was a couple thousand dollars cheaper than the others.  I ended up purchasing a new machine for just a little more than I would have spent on a used Honda.

With a single log arch, the Polaris is pretty much maxed out at 35' aspen (13"-14" at the Butt).  It will pull the log on level ground, but you won't get up a hill with it.

I've been very hard on this machine all year and I've been very pleased with the performance.





Generally, I use the ATV for moving logs; however, at times, I have to use the Oliver cause the ATV just doesn't handle the real heavy stuff (i.e. 30' plus). However, I wouldn't use this on a steep hill.  Probably not the ATV either.  On the steep hills I would opt for a winch or a skyline.



Offline chevytaHOE5674

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2009, 04:34:44 PM »
I have two arctic cat 500I's both with the 5 speed manual transmission. Between the two there is probably 3-4k miles on them. Never had any issues with them and only ever done regular fluid changes, and a couple sets of brake pads. I use them for everything from trail riding, to hauling logs, to pushing snow, moving trailers, hauling cattle feed, running fences out, etc.. I absolutely despise the belt driven auto's because under heavy load they can slip the belts. 

Offline sprucebunny

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2009, 05:44:47 PM »
I recommend Honda Foreman series because of the solid rear axle. I love the low range on my Rubicon; I haven't found much that stops it. It's survived me for 5 years with only a minor problem with a sensor in the transmission. I fixed it myself.
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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2009, 07:12:04 PM »
I've got a Rincon, and I really like it. Never had a problem with the transmission style, it's got tons of power. I only run Honda. Too many problems with the others I've used.
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Offline isawlogs

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #15 on: September 13, 2009, 08:41:40 PM »

   I have a friend that is in the fixing of used bikes , so I asked him once , what bike he liked , he was quick to point out the polaris ,  8)   I like dem alot , keep me busy   ::) :D   So I rephrased my quest to , which bike dont you like , he pointed out the Honda ...  ;) That was good enough for me .
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Offline ladylake

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #16 on: September 14, 2009, 07:07:23 AM »
I'd go with the Honda, farmers I know with Polaris are in the shop a lot, yet they keep buying them, hard to figure/   Steve
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Offline mountaineer

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #17 on: September 14, 2009, 12:33:10 PM »
does anyone own an arctic cat with automatic?  thx

Offline MattJ

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #18 on: September 14, 2009, 01:09:49 PM »
I have a honda that I bought brand new in 1994.  Only change the oil and thats it for maintenance over the past 15 years minus a few spark plugs and air filters.  The thing never stops.  Original brakes, transmission and everything else.  I can't even imagine how many hours it has and it always starts right up and runs all day for the chores I use it for.  Its only a 200cc (back when 300cc was considered large).  In the super low first gear I have dragged some massive loads with it. I was even able to drag a 600+ lb / 36" dia river birch log with it with a friend sitting on the back for traction.  My personal opinion from riding lots of different quads is that a manual or electronic shift manual is a better transmission for control and keeping rpm's high under short durations of high load. 

One thing to think of when you are looking is go bigger than my 200cc, but remember a big ATV chews up a lot more gas, and is much harder to get around in a woodlot than a more compact one like the hondas.  When the big polaris's first came out is when the trees on our riding trails started to develop what tree farmers call tractor blight!  I also can tell you small hondas are very good at pulling those polaris's with the broken belts!

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Re: please help on atv purchase.
« Reply #19 on: September 14, 2009, 03:41:02 PM »
  I have an old Yamaha, had for 14 years, still runs ok, broke the brake cable last.  Neighbor has a Polaris, breaks that belt once in a while, leaves him stuck walking out somewhere.

he hasn't figure out that he needs to carry a spare and a tool kit yet???

he needs to walk out....
Who ever invented work didn't know how to fish.... Here fishy fishy....


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