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Discussion Starter #1
Listen to this crap.

I was at my dealer yesterday trading in a touring sled of mine for a REV.  

He asked me how my Mach was.  I told him fine.  He that told me that every MXZ 800 and Mach 800 that he sold this year has returned to him crashed or wrote off except mine.  I asked him how many he sold.  5 Mach Zs and he didnt remember how many MXZs but it was double or more the Machs.  

This in my opinion is unacceptable.  It goes to show that to many people are buying sleds way to powerful for there riding level.  He also told me that some 500 and 600 sleds were smashed up but not to the severity of the 800s and almost all were repariable.  

This is what gives sledding such a bad reputation.  Ive seen it many times on the trails where people are driving sleds that are 800cc fast and dangerously when they should be on a 380 fan with training wheels.  Then you talk to the guy and its his first sled.  He bought it to be competitive with his experienced buddys 700.  However 10 miniutes later he t-bones his buddy and both of them are in the hospital.

Common I started on a 294 then a 340 then a 500 then a 600 to a 800.  I never drive over my head and thats why i have a almost perfect record of sled driving.  The only thing i ever damaged was my cowl on my 500 mxz when i put it on its side at about 5 km/h.  

The way i see it bombardier and all other manufactors for that matter make there lower cc sleds just as cool looking with just as many options and features as there bigger cc sleds.  and there is no reason why a beginner sled driver needs to go out and buy a muscle sled.  

I have seen with my own to eyes a guy get sent to the hospital and i wonder if he is still alive.  In the fog on his brand new mxz 800 he pulled out to pass me on a road to catch up to his friends who were a little bit infront of us. Only to find out that the trail cut across the road and he t-boned his buddies brand new 800 polaris.  The polaris guy just rolled of his sled and was shook up and the mxz guy when flying through his windsheild and landed about 16 feet from where his sled smashed.  He must have hit the ground at about 70km.  He was lucky there was about 5 feet of snow or someone would be picking up peices.  

All i ask is that when shoping for a brand new sled first choose the sled you want and then think about how you drive and what engine you want.  

And many people say to me, I can drive a 800 responcably and remain safe.  This is true, But the throttle on a 800 is so jumpy that a inexperianced throttle thumb can put you in danger real fast.  

The sad part is that these are the people that get our insurance rates so high.  These are the people that make sledding somewhat dangerous, these are the people that deture inexperianced drivers from getting in to our sport.  

I know that mostly everyone on this fourm are experienced and good drivers,  But the facts dont lie,  What are your thoughts?
 

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I think you got it exactly right Machzzzz1.  I'm am still young and inexpereinced in my opinion.  I am 21 and have been riding since i was really little and on the trails since I was about 12.  I started on a 340 fan, then a 440fan, then a 550 lc, know i have a 500 lc with some mods.  I am a big guy at a little over 200 and my 500 does just fine for the riding we do around here.  I rember being on a family trail ride a couple years ago and a couple of the kids with us were about 8 or 10 on 580 zrs.  They couldn't hardly touch the running boards.  One hits some railroad tracks and the other almost took out the stop sign in town.  Thats just plain carelessness on their parents part.  I've also seen what your talking about when someone goes out and buys a big triple or twin and its their first sled or a big sled for their kid and says they will grow into it.  A smaller cc sled has the same frame and suspension and is usually a little lighter and easier to throw around tell you learn what your doing.
 

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Should have asked how many of them were drunk. Something like 4 out of 5 accidents in Mich have booze involved, not the size of the sled.

Seems like every thundercat should have been wrecked then. But what you see with that is the folks buying the Tcat are either older and level headed or just for lake racing.
 

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I was 19 and the owner of a 1150 PSI Genisis powered beast. I admit that it was way to powerful but never once did I damage it. I don't know how the way i tried to corner with it! I know alot of 16-18 year olds that have 600-1000 cc sled s that have no business with them. Money doesn't buy brains or ability!
Caleb
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Age really isnt an issue.  It comes down to experiance.  I have seen 15 year olds which i would rather drive my mach then some 30 year olds.  

It is also quite possible that some of them were drunk, but im sure not all of them.  

800mxz your right about the thundercat and machz and how most of the owners are older guys or lake racers.  However there are still some who dont fit the profile.
 

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The guy that lost it on the corner that I t boned was 19 on a 583 MXZ. When I was 19, I was still riding my mother's 300 Citation. I wonder what he had been riding before.

A friend of mine told me about a conversation he had with a guy back when 650s were the biggest sleds. This guy where he worked, saw all the Yammi stickers on his tool truck, asked him what he was running. At the time my friend had a fairly new SRV.

He asked the guy what he rode. The guy said he didn't have a sled but was going to get a 650 Indy like his buddies. My friend suggested he start out with a Trail or 400 Indy as a first sled. The guy wasn't impressed with my friend's comments, oh well.
 

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In MN statistically Male drivers ages 18-36 have the highest snowmobile fatality rate. An overwhelming percent of the cases involed alcohol or high rate of speed. Seems like every year we see a bunch go through the ice too.  So the big factors  are.. SEX, AGE, ALCOHOL, SPEED.  I'd guess older riders are more experienced ...and the bones are little tired...LOL.  Besides..if your young and dumb you don't live long enough to be old and dumb. ( ahhh-hemm...there are exceptions...LOL)  I'd also guess that T-Cat owners tend to be older cause not many 21yr olds can throw down 10K american for a freakin sled. OH...and to my knowledge and what I've been able to dig up, they do not make a correlation between big cc sleds and higher fatalities. 500 and 600 cc sleds easily go fast enough to cause an accident from high rate of speed.
 

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We all gripe about this subject time and time again but no one listens. Too bad dealers and insurance company's cant get together and prevent a buyer from purchasing a sled without proof of experience. None of this saftey cource crap, but real in the seat experience.

I see more and more kids on 7-800's with ZERO experience! They sit at the bars and brag about how fast they got here from the last bar. They talk about one of there buddy's crashing and laugh it off thinking it will never happen to them.
It's pretty bad that if you own a 6-700cc sled it's concidered a [girls sled]!!!!!!!!!!
 

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I think 90% of it is booze plain and simple. At Houghton Lake in Michigan, you can't get any guys to leave the Limberlost bar to ride. They have now gone to drinking so much that they don't ride anymore! Just sitting and drinking all day long. I guess it's a lot safer to just sit in the bar and drink, and just forget the whole ridng thing! Oh well, I do notice that there are serious advantages to that. One is your sled doesn't get dirty, two, your tank of gas lasts all year and you never have to fill your oil tank. Also, you really don't need to bother with cold weather gear. Just drive to the bar in jeans and a light jacket. Just my two cents.
 

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I have eight years expierience riding my own sleds and a whole bunch more riding my fathers old beast's!! I started on a 440, then to a 580, 600, then now my 800!! I crashed my 800 this year and caused extensive damage to the machine, but luckily none to me. The accident happened at less than 35 mph!!! It could have happened if i was riding any one of the machines i have owned or ridin in the past!! But yet i still had comments directed towards me that "I can't handle the power of that 800". I ride to my limit, i know my limit of what i can do safely without injuring my self or someone else on the trail. But yet some people still think because there is an 800 on the side of you machine that you are just asking for trouble!! I will agree that there are some people who should not be riding the sleds that they are but for the most part, i think most sledders know their limits and buy a machine that suits them the best!!!

Personally, myself, I would never put a child on a snow machine larger that a 340, there is no need for it. I have a twelve year old soon to be step son, who just this past winter was allowed one time to ride our old 340 yammi by himself for a short period of time!!!After 10 minutes of riding he was getting braver and braver! I couldn't imagine placing a child on a machine any larger, let alone a 5,6,7 or 800 of todays machines. They just don't have the perception of what can happen! we rode with a group of guys this past year one time!!The guy had his ten year old son out with him. The kid was riding alone on an xc 600. His feet barely touched the running boards! There is no way on god's green earth that this kid would know what to do in a crisis situation!! Figures though, that his father was the one to smack into another guy and caused both machines to roll, with no injuries thankfully. what is this guy teaching his kid? it is rediculous!!! That was the last time we rode with them.

Of most snowmobile related deaths in Sask, i would say that drinking, then stupidity, then inexpierience are the major causes!!! My rule is that NO ONE rides my 800 unless they are my riding partners. Too much can happen to quick, and speed doesn't have to be involved!!!
 

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For fear of sounding like a grumpy old guy  
I've been riding on sleds since '69 & riding my own since '81. The last 5 years I've spent a lot of time pointing to YOUR side of the trail when meeting sleds & pointing to my helmet (use your noggin).

It seems a lot of people don't realize the concept of staying on their side of the trail.

After I t boned the kid & he flew of the trail, I called him everything but a white man. He was pretty sheepish & apologized. He's just lucky no one was hurt. I wonder how he'll be riding this winter. All his sled sustained for damage was a bit of a bend on his RH trailing arm.
 

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The key is to know your limits, ride within your abilities, and maintain defensive driving skills. Riding a sled down the trail is just like driving a car(except more fun
)...watch out for the other guy, don't drink and ride...but I think everyone here knows that. It's not that we are necessarily more dedicated to the sport than others (o.k. we are), but guys that talk sleds in July are serious. I could crash a fan cooled sled just as easy as an 800, but if I don't do something reckless to get to that point, than I have maintained control of the sled, instead of the sled controlling me.At the end of the day I have a wife and daughter to come home to, I do my part to make sure that happens, and ride safe so that you guys and gals get home safe too!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Snow monkey.  Of cource there are exceptions.  What I am talking about is the people that just buy a 800 of the bat,  then ask the dealer which one is the brake.
 

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You mean to tell me that these things have brakes?


Just joking.  I think you guys have it covered.  Unfortunately, I don't think the message is getting to the people it needs to be.

And unfortunately, a dealer would much perfer to sell an 800 than a 340, so their not likely to talk people into smaller sleds.  Not that I'm putting blame on the dealer, its just a fact that they need to make a living also, so the bigger the sale, the better.  Besides if they don't sell it to them, the next dealer will.

FishHog
 

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i was at my dealer two winters ago and there was a guy that has never riden in his life and he was buying a pantera 1000 for him and his brother after looking over his sled he opened the hood of a ZR 600 and he said oh my god that engine is small i'll bet the thing is slow and later that evening the dealer had to put the new sled up on the guys trailer because he couldn't figure out how to run the thing.  i saw the same sled at the dealer after that winter and it looked good except for some warn to the rail hyfax but still even though nothing happened it just boggles me at the amount of inexperience

i am 16 years old and have been riding since i was about 7 or 8 starting out on a kitty cat then an 87 yamaha inviter 300 to a 97 ZL 440 and then to my current 96 ZR 580 EFI that i payed for myself from working my butt off

i consider myself to have pretty good experience i havn't had any accident accept for when this bonehead kid ran into the side of my sled bending my tunnel because he wasn't paying attention all he could think about is trying to pass me going down the trail then there has been a few times where someone ran into the bumper on my sled.  this one time i got off my sled after this guy ran into the back of my sled because i was stopped at a stopsign and he actually told me i shouldn't have hit my brakes, what an idiot!!!!! i usually only put on about 2000 miles each winter but we take two trips to the keenwanah each winter and i have been out to yellowstone before the ban so i think i have a feel for the different terrain i know what my snowmobile can and can not do and i have a good feeling for my ability
 

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The major problem is booze and the ability for anyone to get a loan and buy just about any sled they wish,most of these people don't have insurance or pay the inital amount and let the policy laps after that.
 

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To say that large cc machines are death machines is not really fair its the person on the machine that determines the speed. Any one can get on a sled and go a 100 in a straight line but its how they are able to determine their brake distances and cornering speed that will keep them from crashing. I learned to ride on a fan 440 and last year when i got my 580 the first few rides were a learning experience getting used to the sleds ability to build speed so fast. In my way of thinking is to first buy a smaller more forgiving  sled and learn how to ride fast and safe then get bigger sleds if you want. Any ways just my 2cents and everyone have a good and safe 4th.
 

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Parents need to do more to keep there kids alive and safe. The winter of 00-01 we had a kid paralized do to his stupidity and inability to handle his big sled. It was down in Petersburg,MI. ALOT of 15-21 kids have 500-1000 cc sleds. Most are 16-18 and 75% of them should be on 440 or less. There parents all own businesses so they're able to afford these sleds or they buy the loaded kids used sleds after a year or two. My brother never rode one and went out and bought a 96 max 600xt and rode it for 20 minutes before bending it all to ####. WHY? Because he was doing 70 bheind someone and didn't know how to shift weight when trying to steer around a guy that hit his breaks and barraled roled through a ditch. It was promptly sold to by other brother for a song
. It is real bad where i grew up and most dealers don't care. I do know one that trains everyone on any type of machine if they are new to the machines. I saw them refuse to sell a 17 year old a cbr900 years ago, I was suprised. So some dealers do still have morals.  All we can do is try to educate those that we see riding in unsafe manners. And remember it's not always people's fault for there stupidity. They just need to be shown the proper way to do things and the whole sledding community will gain from it.
Caleb
 

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I started of on a 299, then a 340, 440, but when i got my first indy 400 lc WOW, that was way to fast for me, and that was only 2 years ago ! Once that sled was to small for me i switched for the 583 mach ! now that was a hole new ball game ! Took me a while before i felt safe, Now my F3 600 is way fast enough for me and i got there a step at a time, i would not see my self on a 800 just now!  you need to no how to walk before you can run  
 
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