Author Topic: Looking to buy a NEW sled, for ice fishing and riding around. Recommendations?  (Read 2405 times)

Offline Skywagon

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I have had all the brands still in business at one time or the other through the years, they are all pretty good, I would not let brand loyalty get in the way.  I would also not get too hung up about an air cooled engine, you stated that if there was not much snow you would be riding your 4-wheeler anyway, leaving engine options open leaves you more flexibility.  I would caution you about some of the narrower sleds, they can be tippy, especially with two people.  The last two sleds I have had are full sized Ski-Doo Expeditions, my current one is a 2020, great machines, wide track, stable, rides very good, 2 speed is great for pulling loads, most likely my next machine will be another Expedition, but probably not what you are looking for because of price  With that said, one of the machines you mentioned might be a good fit for your mission and price point, that is the Yamaha VK, they have a solid reputation here in the north, basically a no frills sled that is dependable. I store one for a local cabin owner who lives in the US and have ridden and used it quite a bit over the years as an axillary sled, mostly pulling sleighs, the machine is air cooled, it is a wide track (very stable), 2-up seat, rides pretty good and has a 2-speed transmission (good for pulling).

Offline TheLionsFan

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I have had all the brands still in business at one time or the other through the years, they are all pretty good, I would not let brand loyalty get in the way.  I would also not get too hung up about an air cooled engine, you stated that if there was not much snow you would be riding your 4-wheeler anyway, leaving engine options open leaves you more flexibility.  I would caution you about some of the narrower sleds, they can be tippy, especially with two people.  The last two sleds I have had are full sized Ski-Doo Expeditions, my current one is a 2020, great machines, wide track, stable, rides very good, 2 speed is great for pulling loads, most likely my next machine will be another Expedition, but probably not what you are looking for because of price  With that said, one of the machines you mentioned might be a good fit for your mission and price point, that is the Yamaha VK, they have a solid reputation here in the north, basically a no frills sled that is dependable. I store one for a local cabin owner who lives in the US and have ridden and used it quite a bit over the years as an axillary sled, mostly pulling sleighs, the machine is air cooled, it is a wide track (very stable), 2-up seat, rides pretty good and has a 2-speed transmission (good for pulling).

Thank you for the awesome advice. I will for sure take that into consideration.

Talking with my wife over the past day about it, we realized we may have another issue that could hold us back. The only trailer we have is an 8x10 utility trailer. Iím not exactly sure thatís gonna work considering these sleds are over 120Ē long.   Not exactly into buying another trailer neither.   I definitely have some thinking and figuring out to do.

Offline eiderz

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Thank you for the awesome advice. I will for sure take that into consideration.

Talking with my wife over the past day about it, we realized we may have another issue that could hold us back. The only trailer we have is an 8x10 utility trailer. Iím not exactly sure thatís gonna work considering these sleds are over 120Ē long.   Not exactly into buying another trailer neither.   I definitely have some thinking and figuring out to do.

If it's an open trailer the rear end of the machine can hang over a foot or two. Many sleds ride in pickup truck beds like that.

Offline TheLionsFan

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If it's an open trailer the rear end of the machine can hang over a foot or two. Many sleds ride in pickup truck beds like that.

Itís just a basic utility trailer with a one piece ramp on the back.  I could take the ramp off, but the trailer doesnít tilt and I wouldnít have a way to drive it on.  I was kinda wondering if the skis would hang out in front a little or if that was a bad idea.

Offline Skywagon

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Itís just a basic utility trailer with a one piece ramp on the back.  I could take the ramp off, but the trailer doesnít tilt and I wouldnít have a way to drive it on.  I was kinda wondering if the skis would hang out in front a little or if that was a bad idea.

As long as the skis are not sticking out past the pivot point of the ski and you have the machine secured well, I don't see a problem in letting them stick out the front of the trailer, it would be better to get the weight on the front end of the trailer rather than back anyway.

Offline eiderz

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Itís just a basic utility trailer with a one piece ramp on the back.  I could take the ramp off, but the trailer doesnít tilt and I wouldnít have a way to drive it on.  I was kinda wondering if the skis would hang out in front a little or if that was a bad idea.

I agree with Skywagon, it's ok for the skis to project as long as they don't bind when the trailer turns. To load/unload, use a snowbank. Back up to it and power off, power on. If that's too adventurous for you buy a portable ramp, not big money and many will support loading a machine into a pickup, so loading onto a trailer will be super easy. Don't overthink this, its a new TOY!  :woot: :thumbsup: ;D

Offline TheLionsFan

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I agree with Skywagon, it's ok for the skis to project as long as they don't bind when the trailer turns. To load/unload, use a snowbank. Back up to it and power off, power on. If that's too adventurous for you buy a portable ramp, not big money and many will support loading a machine into a pickup, so loading onto a trailer will be super easy. Don't overthink this, its a new TOY!  :woot: :thumbsup: ;D

That sounds great.  Maybe I will look into a ramp that will work with a snowmobile.  I appreciate the good info guys, especially since Iím very new to the snowmobile thing.

Offline eiderz

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There are many out there, something like this will do it:

https://www.discountramps.com/snowmobile/ramps/p/SNO-7754-HDXW/

Offline TheLionsFan

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There are many out there, something like this will do it:

https://www.discountramps.com/snowmobile/ramps/p/SNO-7754-HDXW/

I just bookmarked that link, thanks!

Offline TheLionsFan

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Made a few calls to a couple dealers....   Oh boy.  Its starting to get real.

Offline eiderz

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Sounds like a score is imminent. Pictures required for the audience.  ;D

Offline TheLionsFan

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Well we solved our trailer issue.  Sold it.  Bought a 6x12.    I need to do something to the ramps now.  The little I know about snowmobiles, I hear those grate style ramps that are on utility trailers are bad for the carbides? 

Offline Skywagon

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Well we solved our trailer issue.  Sold it.  Bought a 6x12.    I need to do something to the ramps now.  The little I know about snowmobiles, I hear those grate style ramps that are on utility trailers are bad for the carbides?

That is correct, they would tear your carbides out.  I use this product http://www.caliberproductsinc.com/snowmobile-trailer-accessories/LPGG.php  on the front and back ramps of my snowmobile trailer to save the plywood and to provide some grip when I walk on them.  You might want to go with the wide ones (12" just to give a little wiggle room when you go up the ramp.  It appears there are 4-30 pieces in a box, probably enough to do what you need.  Caliber also makes the same thing without the traction nubs, but I would suggest going with the nubs.  You could go the cheap route, if you can find an old plastic pickup bed liner, cut it in strips and attach it to the ramp, I will warn you that if you do that, it is very slippery and you don't want to walk on it with wet/snowy feet.

Did you buy a sled yet?

Offline TheLionsFan

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That is correct, they would tear your carbides out.  I use this product http://www.caliberproductsinc.com/snowmobile-trailer-accessories/LPGG.php  on the front and back ramps of my snowmobile trailer to save the plywood and to provide some grip when I walk on them.  You might want to go with the wide ones (12" just to give a little wiggle room when you go up the ramp.  It appears there are 4-30 pieces in a box, probably enough to do what you need.  Caliber also makes the same thing without the traction nubs, but I would suggest going with the nubs.  You could go the cheap route, if you can find an old plastic pickup bed liner, cut it in strips and attach it to the ramp, I will warn you that if you do that, it is very slippery and you don't want to walk on it with wet/snowy feet.

Did you buy a sled yet?

Thanks for posting that link. I will definitely check that out.

No, we havenít bought one yet. Itís gonna be the Polaris Indy 550 LXT.  We wanted to make sure we had a trailer first.  Now that we have one, we just want to take care of that ramp so it doesnít hurt the carbides then we will go and make the purchase.

Offline eiderz

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Definitely get snowsled track pads/gliders. Saves the machine and the trailer, I know from personal experience. Carbides on plywood=repair bill ::)

So we need pics of the new toy! Don't keep us waiting!  ;D ;)

Offline bart

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The pads and gliders are nice...

I added a extra piece next to sled for boot traction.
"Many fish their entire lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after."-Henry David Thoreau
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Offline TheLionsFan

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Definitely get snowsled track pads/gliders. Saves the machine and the trailer, I know from personal experience. Carbides on plywood=repair bill ::)

So we need pics of the new toy! Don't keep us waiting!  ;D ;)

A repair bill is definitely what I donít want, especially with a new machine.  I will for sure post pics once I get the machine.

Offline TheLionsFan

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That is correct, they would tear your carbides out.  I use this product http://www.caliberproductsinc.com/snowmobile-trailer-accessories/LPGG.php  on the front and back ramps of my snowmobile trailer to save the plywood and to provide some grip when I walk on them.  You might want to go with the wide ones (12" just to give a little wiggle room when you go up the ramp.  It appears there are 4-30 pieces in a box, probably enough to do what you need.  Caliber also makes the same thing without the traction nubs, but I would suggest going with the nubs.  You could go the cheap route, if you can find an old plastic pickup bed liner, cut it in strips and attach it to the ramp, I will warn you that if you do that, it is very slippery and you don't want to walk on it with wet/snowy feet.

Did you buy a sled yet?

Ok so my wife and I got our trailer all finished. We put plywood on the ramp and covered the whole floor, and also put up sides.  Looking at these products by Caliber, do I need them to run the whole length of the trailer including the ramp, or JUST the ramp since thatís when Iíll be giving it the most ďgasĒ?  Being that itís a 6x12, it looks like it would be quite expensive.  Iíll do whatever I have to do, but also wouldnít mind saving a few dollars by putting down what I ďneedĒ and not spending on what I donít.  Also, do I need them for the skis AND the track or just the skis since thatís where the carbides are?

As always, I appreciate your help guys.

Offline eiderz

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The ramp will take the most beating, especially at the hinge point, but it's worth the money to do it all. At the hinge the metal will be ruined if you don't put down runners/mats, which keep the sled from direct contact with the metal. Keep in mind the track doesn't go all the way to the front wall but the skis do.

Offline TheLionsFan

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The ramp will take the most beating, especially at the hinge point, but it's worth the money to do it all. At the hinge the metal will be ruined if you don't put down runners/mats, which keep the sled from direct contact with the metal. Keep in mind the track doesn't go all the way to the front wall but the skis do.

Great to know.  Iím think I can probably install them to cross the gap between ramp and trailer, covering the metal.  I would think thereís enough flex in that material to bend as the ramp goes up and down.

Offline eiderz

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You don't need to bridge the gap. The thickness of the runners and mat should be sufficient to keep the machine from contacting the metal trim. If you check around online you will find pictures of how it's done.

Offline TheLionsFan

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You don't need to bridge the gap. The thickness of the runners and mat should be sufficient to keep the machine from contacting the metal trim. If you check around online you will find pictures of how it's done.

That sounds good.

So it looks like based on the pic Bart posted that I need a wider one for the track and two narrower ones for the skis.  I gotta try and find some time tonight and get some ordered.

Offline badger132

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The ones for the skis are slick and grooved, and let the carbide slide, and keep the sled going straight. The center is for traction, and to protect the wood from studded tracks chewing up the wood. A piece of worn out track screwed on upside down is a common substitute for the center traction mat. If you don't have studs, you might get by without- those mesh gates should not get as slick as plywood gates, and the trailer bed is not as critical.

Offline eiderz

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That sounds good.

So it looks like based on the pic Bart posted that I need a wider one for the track and two narrower ones for the skis.  I gotta try and find some time tonight and get some ordered.

https://www.discountramps.com/snowmobile-trailer-accessories/c/2450/

I like this place, bought quite a few things over the last couple years.

Offline Skywagon

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I don't worry about the floor of the trailer, the ramp is the critical part.  The exception to this if the new sled you get has really aggressive carbides on the skis, probably won't be an issue for you, as after you run the carbides a short while they tend to wear a bit and are less of an issue.

Offline TheLionsFan

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https://www.discountramps.com/snowmobile-trailer-accessories/c/2450/

I like this place, bought quite a few things over the last couple years.

After checking them out, Iíll definitely be ordering from them. Great prices.  Also found they have a trailer kit that comes with the ski glides and traction mat and 4 ratchet straps for $130.  Plus 10% off by signing up for mailing list.  Think thatís exactly what I need.  Thanks!!

Offline TheLionsFan

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Hoping to go today to pick up sled. Tomorrow at the latest.

Got the Caliber TraxMat installed on trailer today, but going to wait to install Low Pro Grip Glides until I get home so I know exactly where to install them.




Never thought Iíd deck out a utility trailer hahaha.  But itís a start.

Offline eiderz

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Lookin' good TLF. Good thinking to get the sled first and center the gliders to the skis.

Offline TheLionsFan

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Finally got to bring it home yesterday.  Pretty excited about it. 




Offline eiderz

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Nice! Best of luck with it.

 



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