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buying new atv

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Trying to decide on which atv to buy.
I have been a diehard honda man but I am not sure what to get. I want a 400-500cc model, 4x4, manual shift.

any opinions on other brands?
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   Chackbay
Stick with a Honda; I've always owned them & will continue too.
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Stick with honda!! Dont try to venture out you wont be happy in a couple years when it wont start and you know that honda still would.
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   rancher
Honda!!!! How about the new 420 rancher.
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   BOW FEVER
IF I WERE YOU I WOULD CONSIDER AN ARTIC CAT. I HAVE ONE AS WELL AS MAY OF MY FRIENDS. THEY ARE A VERY COMFORTABLE BIKE, PLENTY OF POWER, AND THE BEST WARRENTY BY FAR. (3 YEAR FACTORY BUMPER TO BUMPER AND OPTIONAL 5 YEAR.)

DONT KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE, BUT PHILLIPS IN NEW ROADS SELLS THEM AND IS VERY FAIR. ALSO DOES A GREAT JOB WITH WARRENTY REPAIR IF NECESSARY.
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Bought a new '07 Honda Foreman in March, love it! Plenty of power and pretty comfortable to ride. It can handle whatever you want to do!
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I just bought an 07' Arctic Cat and hunted with it this past season. I've always been a honda man and still really like their bikes; however I went with the Arctic Cat simply because the warranty and the features. Honda has a very durable engine, which is no secret, but when you match up the features Arctic Cat takes the cake. Arctic Cats are built to work with huge racks, best in class ground clearance, locking 4wd...etc. Only time will tell if my Arctic Cat will last like my previous honda's have, but like anything else...if you take care of it and change the oil and filters regularly it will last. If it does last, which it will, it will take the cake hands down. Look at the specs and all the hunting/working accessories you can get with them online. UNBELIVEABLE. I started out with a post on here last year just like yourself and I will tell you... Arctic Cats are not as popular as other brands because they have just took off within the last decade so most people will give you biased opinions without any experience on an AC at all. Go ride a few different brands... they are all great...except the Polaris!!! Wouldn't own another one if I won it in a raffle... I'd sell it day one!!! Just my 2 cents.
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   mlh...
I just bought an AC 400 manual shift and it is a BEAST. You can't beat all of the standard features on an arctic cat for the price. It comes with 12 inches of clearance, independant rear suspension, a 2 inch receiver for a hitch, a six gallon tank, triple disc brakes, selectable 2 or 4 wheel drive with differential lock, and a digital display with hourmeter, speedometer, and fuel guage. They are much taller than comparable bikes as well. I have always ridden big bears, but when I saw all those features for the same price, I couldn't pass it up.
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   LONG GUN
GIVE IT 3-4 YEARS ..YOU'LL BE OWNING ANOTHER HONDA.
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   BOW FEVER
LONG GUN, NO OFFENCE, BUT I WOULDN'T OWN A HONDA WITH YOUR MONEY. THE DAYS OF THE 250 BIG RED AND 300 FOUR TRAX ARE OVER. HONDA IS WAY WAY BEHIND ALL THE REST. I HUNT IN THE MORGANZA SPILLWAY, AND IT TENDS TO GET VERY VERY BAD. WE ONLY HAVE 2 HONDAS ON OUR PLACE AND THE PEOPLE THAT OWN THEM CAN'T HUNT LARGE PORTIONS OF OUR PROPERTY BECAUSE OF LACK OF CLEARANCE AND INABILITY TO TAKE WATER.

MUDSLAPPER, IF YOU PLAN TO HUNT WHERE IS HIGH AND DRY, BY ALL MEANS BY A HONDA. NOW, IF YOU INTEND TO HUNT IN THE SWAMPS AND LOWLANDS I WOULD SUGGEST YOU STAY AWAY FROM HONDA AND CONSIDER AN ARTIC CAT. THE PEOPLE WHO HUNT WITH ME ALL USED TO RIDE HONDA. THEY NOW ALL EITHER RIDE POLARIS OR ARTIC CAT.
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   lsubyten
I have to agree about the big red. Sorry I sold it. The foreman is a great bike if you hunt in the hills but if you hunt in the swamp go somewhere else. The new honda's are very cold natured and no ground clearance at all. Way too much plastic and you will have problems with it. I had a 87 Big Red for 19 yrs. and hopefully my foreman will last me half of that.
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   southnboy
foreman is great. Just add gas....
older models did not have much ground clearance. Heck the rancher is really a 400 now.. Best deal for the dollar is the rancher... For riding and bringing in dead Deer the Rancher is plenty.
I had a honda 200 ATC 3 wheeler for 20 years. Then bought a 400 Foreman in 2000.
Good Luck
southnboy
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   LONG GUN
POLARIS AND THE ARTIC CRAPPER.

I DO HUNT IN THE MISS RIVER BOTTOMS
CAN TAKE ALL THE WATER YOURS CAN AT STOCK RIDING HIGHT.

AS FOR THE REST ..WE JUST USE THE GO DEVIL AND SAVE JACKED UP SNORKEL RIDING FOR YALL.

DEALER CANT GIVE THEM AWAY IN SOUTH LA. LOL

ANY OF THE I.R.S. BIKES AINT WORT CRAP FOR MAINTAING A LEASE OR DURABILITY OVER THE YEARS.

2004 FORMAN 450 AND 500'S RULE ANY WHERE
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A buddy of mine has an Artic Cat and I own a Rancher. We both went through the same crap this past hunting season. If you buy either you will be happy. They are both on the top of the ATV chart.
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   SmartnZ71
Your'e right, they don't make the honda's like they used 2. I own a 95 300 fourtrax 4x4. Can't believe it's 12 years old already. My CDI box just went out recently and that's the ONLY problem i've ever had. Not sure why they ever stopped making those bikes. Good luck
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   mlh...
Here you go...you decide

Brakes
Honda.....front discs, rear drum
AC........triple discs

Fuel Capacity
Honda.....3.7 gallons
AC........6.5 gallons

Ground clearance
Honda......6.5 inches
AC.........12 inches

Suspension travel
Honda......6.3 inches
AC.........10 inches

Drive train
Honda.....2/4 wheel drive
AC........2/4 wheel with differential lock

Suspension
Honda......Front IRS with rear swingarm
AC.........Front and rear IRS

Transmission
Honda......5 speed
AC.........5 speed high/low

Engine
Honda......420cc
AC.........376cc

Tires
Honda.....24x8x12 front, 24x10x11 rear
AC.........25x8x12 front, 25x10x12 rear

Weight
Honda.....560
AC........648

Racks
Honda......standard front and rear racks
AC.........speedrack system (allows accessories to be installed with locking pins)

Price (MSRP)
Honda........$5299
AC...........$5799
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Interesting comparison MLH... I looked into other brands before buying my Honda foreman. Hands down, other brands like yamaha, AC, polaris have way more ground clearance standard, locking diff's, etc. but it all comes down to how you ride. In that AC vs. Honda comparison list we should point out that AC has more ground clearance and suspension travel but also costs a good bit more with a smaller engine and weighs about 90lbs more at a whopping 648 lbs. I mean my 500 foreman only weighs 600 and thats with a bigger engine. That thing is heavy as hell in the mud so going up to the weight of that AC is NOT what i'd want to be doing in the mud around here. IRS is nice for riding comfort but is the last thing you want when towing or hauling anything. You just don't get the torque of a solid rear axle. No one will dispute that. Most will say Honda's Rincon (650-680cc I think?)can't pull near as much as Honda's Foreman (475cc) simply because of the IRS on the Rincon. However when it comes to a fun sporty ride, that Rincon is what you want to be on! You just have to weigh out the features to see what's important to you.
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   mlh...
Yes, there are obviously some features that are better on the Honda, but it just depends on what you are looking for. I wanted a BIG BAD looking bike. The AC is clearly larger. I wanted more ground clearance...I like how aggressive a bike looks with lots of ground clearance. I wanted a diff lock which the AC has. I also wanted triple disc brakes, which the Honda has a rear drum. Yes, the Honda has a bigger engine and less weight, but with the type of riding I do, it really won't make much difference to me. As far as price goes, I paid $5100 for mine (2007) a few months back. I'm not sure what you can get the Honda for, but the only dealer close to me does not tend to come down that much. I have compared his prices before and have never bought a bike from him for that reason. I'm not saying that the AC is the best bike hands down, that is why I put the comparison up, so people can make their own decision. If I were trying to sway someone into buying an AC, then I would not have posted the features that the Honda has that are better than the AC. I have mainly ridden Big Bears and liked them for the same reasons as I listed above...ground clearance, etc. When I saw the AC for the first time, I was surprised at how many features it had compared to the Big Bear. That is why I bought it. Like I said above, it just depends on what you want in a bike.
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I'll certainly agree on the aggressive looks of some of the other bikes. The dealer i got my honda from had yamaha as well and some of them definitely had a huge amount of stock lift. I just don't really need that. I've yet to ride with anyone who has an arctic cat but would like to soon just to see them in action since i've heard a lot about them. good luck fishin
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I just bought my new honda foreman from the Honda dealership in Natchez MS. The price difference was well worth the drive.I totally love my bike! If clearance is what you are looking for, you can take the money that you save on a Honda and get a lift kit pt on it like I did. I just got rid of my 02 Foreman that was rode extremely hard and never had any problems out of it! Honda all the way!
P.S. I priced the 420 ranchers when I bought my Foreman in Natchez, they were $4800. Hope this helps and good luck!
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   BOW FEVER
MUDSLAPPER,

When you do buy a bike please post which one and why. Just curious.

And one thing that I think was left off on the comparison. Honda has a 6 month factory warrenty with the option to buy a 3 1/2 year warrenty. Artic Cat has a 3 year factory warrenty, bumper to bumper, with the option to purchase a 5 year. More speed, More power, More clearance, More warrenty. More, More, More! I'm Sorry. I'm getting carried away. Look, I know PLENTY of people who own Artic Cat, and I do not know a Single One who has any complaints. I am not saying that the bikes never break. But when they do break you get good, fast, WARRENTY service. That is alot more than I can say for Honda. If you put any abuse on a new honda (ie 27 or 28 inch tires, etc) it WILL break and that little bit of inital cost you saved will be no more.

Happy Hunting and Thanks for allowing me to Vent.
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If i was you i would try to find a used kawasaki bayou 220 with some WIDE mud flaps and factory tires...unstopable. If you are like some i know you are already a blundering mess of thremocells, binoculars, GPS units, grunt calls, bleet cans, scent bombs, tinks #69, honey buns, cold drinks, loose bullets, snuff cans, pee bottles...etc. You are already jingleing like a shivering crack head with a slavation army bell in front of wallie world. Now i know that this monster you are hunting is so old that every one in the club has been hunting him for 14 years...but the chances are pretty slim that he is blind and deaf..Now just think if you go to upgrading to an arctic cat on top of your already "disadvantaged" hunt you will be slinging so much mud and making so much MORE racket that you will run all the deer out of the woods and will soon find your self looking for a 7MM STW or 300 Ultramag (left handed of course cause you are afraid of shooting like normal folk) just to get in the vicinity of that deer that is now reduced to a 600 yard brown blur of a-hole and elbows in your cross hairs and a half hearted prayer from you that the minuscule morsel of meat and antler that you manage to slavage after an overkill shot from your 3/4 pound chunk of hot, fiery lead that is parrallel only to a anti-tank round won't cost you another 400$...If you want my opinion, buy the kawasaki. With the left over money you can buy a skiff, some hoop nets and a pair of rubber boots so white and shiny you will actually appear to be levatating off your stern as you heave your cast net over board for just a few more of those elusive and oh so tastey shad ....chicks dig the reeboks....and these kind of chicks save you alot of money on dental visits.
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   SHORT-MAG
1999 HONDA FOREMAN 450 WITH ADDED FRONT LOCKER. CHANGE OIL, DIFF. OIL AND SPARK PLUG YEARLY. NEVER EVER BEEN IN A SHOP OR HAD A PROBLEM. NEVER EVER FAILED TO START- EVEN WHEN IT WAS 15 DEGREES! ARTIC CAT- 3 1/2 YR WARRANTY, WHY? BECAUSE THEY NEED IT! HONDA DEALER TOLD ME I WOULD BE STUPID TO BUY EXTENDED WARRANTY(AND HE WOULD HAVE MADE MONEY ON THAT!) FEATURES? I USE MY BIKE TO RIDE MY KIDS AROUND, GET MY DEAD DEER OUT THE WOODS, AND PULL A SET OF DISCS TO MAKE FOOD PLOTS. IT DOES WHAT I NEED IT TO DO AND IT NEVER STOPS!! DON'T NEED ANY OTHER FEATURES THAN THAT! DO WHAT YOUR GUT IS TELLING YOU- IF IT DOESN'T BREAK DON'T TRY TO FIX IT!! BUY THE HONDA- YOU KNOW THAT'S WHAT YOU NEED TO DO.
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A Can-Am 500 h.o. efi come back and report to us..... that way I can see if the infomercials they run early in the morning are true.
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Simmesport reebock must really be Dennis Miller with rants like that. LOL ! I`m with refinery man on this one. Honda all the way.Bought a new 06 350 rancher december 05 and could not be happier, zero problems. I have a 86 250sx that I put through hell and it still runs, also have a 83 185s that still runs great.changed the clutch once along with a few minor things. you cant beat that! possum
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   BLKSHEEP
I have a 2004 Honda rincon 650 with about 3000 hard miles and no problems!,Man it's SWEET!!!
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   roadhead
id have to say take the can-am for a spin, my boss rode one in mississippi and said it had the power of a race bike,and he said he couldnt get it stuck, however, for the price he went buy a 420 rancher... go ride the canam and report back
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   MARSHALLD
I think the can-am is way over priced. Why does anyone need a 800 EFI atv(their top of the line bike)? How fast do you want to get to your stand!! HONDA all the way!!! I have 7-8 friends and we all ride honda, no problems. One bought a new Kawasaki 650 brute force and on the first ride it died out in water, and then the belt was slipping. We all passed by. That 650 is alot faster, but so what. Are you into drag racing? The Honda is one of the last manufactures to offer a manual shift. IT'S PROVEN!!. The 3-wheelers from way back when started out with manual shift and they're still going. HONDA ALL THE WAY!!! Just my opinion...
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   mlh...
Maybe honda doesn't have a long warranty because they might lose money on repairs? Maybe AC has a long warranty because it is attractive to buyers and they KNOW that their bikes will hold up? If a dealer advised me AGAINST buying a warranty, maybe he is trying to make more money on repairs down the road?

Just throwing that out there.....things can be interpreted in many ways.
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   boudy30
Bought a rancher in 05. Love it, before that i was riding a 1982 110 3 wheeler. All the major brands made 3 wheelers in the 70's and 80's. When was the last time you seen a 3 wheeler still running that was not a honda.
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   dawg123
I was once a diehard Honda man. Lets just say their new line of bikes(aint what they use to be)to just put it plain and simple THEIR CHEAP.
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   BLKSHEEP
If Hondas are cheap then what's good? please enlighten us ??
what are you riding??
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I was a die hard Honda fan for 20+ years. I have raced, hunted, played on and worked with Honda's. They are NOT the atv's they used to be. In November of '02, I bought an Artic Cat 400I 4X4 auto. It is unstoppable by any other atv. I went places in the swamps that my friends with Ranchers and Rubicons couldn't go. At that time I only had the 25" factory tires on it. I recently replaced the wore out factory tires with some 26" Swamplites and gained 3 more inches of ground clearance. I service it regularly just like I do my truck, other than that, I put gas in it and ride anywhere I want to go. Anybody want to put a Honda up against this Cat, just bring some green and GETCHA SOME.
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stay away from the 400 auto rancher--not enough power to get out of its own way--bought one 2 yrs back and have not had any troubles but like i said it does not have enought power for the automatic transmission from a dead start.--this bike should last a hundred yrs. because you cannot abuse it with so little power--in the can-am ad on tv it pulled the sled about two feet and i know thats true for sure its not a fake picture or test--one of the biggest problem honda had over the yrs. is not having a high/low range on most of their bikes except for the rubicon-i think they shot themselves in the foot for not having the H/L features-
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   SHORT-MAG
NO SUZIE-Q FANS OUT THERE?? IF YOU OWN AN ARTIC CAT, BETTER CHECK- IT'S A SUZUKI POWERED MACHINE. WHERE ARE THE SUZUKI FANS? YAMAHA FANS? HOW MANY SUZUKI OR YAMAHA 3 WHEELERS DO SEE OUT THERE NOW A DAYS? WHEN YOUR ARTIC CAT(SUZUKI) OR YAMAHA IS 20 YRS OLD AND IS STILL TOGETHER AND RUNNING LET US KNOW. THE HONDA RELIABILITY IS UNTOUCHABLE!!! A FEW LESS FEATURES, I'LL GIVE YOU THAT. BUT THEY HAVE PROVEN SINCE THE LATE 70'S THAT A LONG WARRANTY IS NOT NEEDED TO SELL THEIR BIKES OR FOR REPAIRS BECAUSE THEY DON'T BREAK!! I'LL TAKE THE RELIABILITY OVER A FEW FEATURES ANY DAY. MUDSLAPPER, RIDE A FEW AND DECIDE FOR YOURSELF IF ITS FEATURES, RELIABILITY OR A COMBINATION OF BOTH THAT YOU ARE LOOKING FOR IN A BIKE- THEN YOU'LL BUY A HONDA...
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YAMAZILLA WILL SHOW HIS FACE AGAIN.BE ON THE LOOK OUT ALL YOU HONDA FANS
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   SHORT-MAG
Saw your other post about looking at getting a new rifle in 300 WSM. Why are you getting another rifle, is your old one a "turd" and can't hit anything? HE HE!!! I bought the gators because I was hunting in an area where I kept getting puncture flats and got tired of plugging tires so I went to the 6 ply tires. I don't have any mud where I hunt, just wanted a tire to resist the puntures. I find with these tires the bike steers easier too. So far no punctures either. By the way, I bought a Ruger Mark II in 300 WSM last year and I don't find it kicks any harder than my Rem. 30-06. I used to shoot a Browning in 300 win. mag and I found it kicked harder than the WSM. If you want to check ballistics between the regular mags and the WSM's or any other calibers just go to www.Winchester.com. They have ballistic charts on just about any caliber you would want.
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