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Thread: Arctic Cat -vs- Honda -vs-Yamaha ??

  1. #1
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    Default Arctic Cat -vs- Honda -vs-Yamaha ??

    I know nothing about modern ATVs.
    I am looking for one to use around the property for hauling a firewood trailer,
    garden stuff, my trailer for my aircraft floats, a log splitter and so forth. Maybe moving the plane when it is up on a float-trailer as well.
    A 10 acre wooded area 2 acres of cut lawn which I can't mess up while crossing.

    I am looking at a Honda 420 Rancher, An Arctic Cat 450, and a Yamaha 350.

    Thoughts on what to look for and what to avoid. ?????
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    Member Roger's Avatar
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    Unless you find a used Yamaha 350 you wont buy a new one Yamaha is only making the 700 I'm keeping all the ones I bought at the start of this season hoping some Yamaha desk jockey up in cooperate will bring them back in 2016. I've owned 100 + Yamahas (450 and 350) love them never had a problem and I had some with 10,000 + miles
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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    The 350 Yamaha is new at the local dealer. It was sitting in the crate for a long time and fell through the cracks as far as the inventory was concerned. It is a 2014 and is now assembled.

    I did note that the Yamaha 350 has a straight across axle on the rear end and the 2015 450 Arctic Cat has two independent axles plus low range. Would the two axles save on tearing up the lawns in tight turns ??
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    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    Only if it has a differential.

    My Rhino has independent rear suspension, and an open but lockable rear differential.

    I had a Rancher 350 with a straight rear axle and while it certainly acted like a locked rear end in turns, I don't recall it to have been particularly hard on grass.

    My advise is, based on experience and reputation for reliability, is either the Honda or the Yamaha. How do the weights compare?

    As far as power, load carrying, etc. you aren't describing a particularly demanding situation for wheelers. I'm PO'd that Honda went to the liquid cooled 420- the air cooled 350 was great. Is the Yamaha air cooled?
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    Member Akheloce's Avatar
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    Just looked at the specs, I personally would consider the Yamaha. I like a light, no frills, carbureted wheeler for utility work.
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    the 2014 350 Yamaha Grizzly has a 348 CC air and Oil cooled engine with a carb. It weighs wet 568 pounds. and they claim an 1102 pound towing capacity.
    It has a selector for 2wd or 4wd. No Hi- low range solid rear axle Made in Japan

    The 2015 Arctic Cat is a 443cc engine, which is fuel injected. It has a hi and low range setting I can't find the wet weight listed. But the dry weight is 613 pounds. They claim a towing capacity of 1050 pounds. two drop axles but not a slipping differential. It is Listed as LIQUID and AIR cooled. Made in the USA

    the 2015 Honda has a 420 cc engine, is fuel injected but listed as air cooled. It weighs 608 pounds wet, it only tows 848 pounds. solid rear axleMade in Japan
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    The tow specs on that Honda are pretty conservative IMO. They have a very low 1st gear. If you would put independent rear suspension on the Honda I think I'd go for that. The fuel injection is pretty dang nice. My choice of your list would be Honda, Yamaha, cat
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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    One thing I forgot the mention was that the Honda and Yamaha 350 have a tab with a hole for the tow ball. The Arctic Cat has a receiver hitch mount that takes a pick-up receiver hitch.

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    Member Roger's Avatar
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    The older Yamaha 350's that had IRS has 4x4 and diff lock. the straight axle does not. They stopped making the IRS in the 350 several years ago. IRS is a smother ride but straight axle carry's more weight
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    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    I also noticed that they might have a 2014 Yamaha 450. I don;t think they made a 2015 year 450... At least that is what it looked like tonight when I came home from work.
    I will check on the tomorrow. My butt is dragging.
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    Not sure about the Honda or artic cat but the yammy 350 & 450 are also available with aux pull start option. It's a nice safety feature if you have a battery issue and are out in the bush. I've got a 2007 350 IRS model that I'm quite happy with and have also used the single axle version...the IRS is noticeably smoother riding.

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    I've had a couple of Ranchers.... for the work you describe they are pretty bulletproof. The straight axle makes rock crawling a pain but for running chores and towing wood carts around a property they will outlast a independent suspension machine. That straight axle is just way more durable than a bunch of CVs.

    Easy choice to me.
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  13. #13
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    Ended up buying a 2015 Arctic Cat 450. Happy so far. I like the receiver hitch socket and have already used my adjustable drop hitch mount. Wife is super POed, telling me she will refuse to use it or even sit on it. Apparently she likes back pain and doing things like they did in 2000 BC. Well OK-Doky....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    Ended up buying a 2015 Arctic Cat 450. Happy so far. I like the receiver hitch socket and have already used my adjustable drop hitch mount. Wife is super POed, telling me she will refuse to use it or even sit on it. Apparently she likes back pain and doing things like they did in 2000 BC. Well OK-Doky....
    Congrats...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Float Pilot View Post
    Ended up buying a 2015 Arctic Cat 450. Happy so far. I like the receiver hitch socket and have already used my adjustable drop hitch mount. Wife is super POed, telling me she will refuse to use it or even sit on it. Apparently she likes back pain and doing things like they did in 2000 BC. Well OK-Doky....

    Great choice.........

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    I'm a huge Yamaha fan, and Honda is a close second.
    But...I think you made a stellar choice. The A/C sounds like a great machine for all the obvious reasons.
    Your wife needs to research this stuff before she boycotts....The most uncomfortable machines I ever had were my old reliable 400/450 Honda Foreman wheelers. Those solid axle machines beat the outta me. And the drum brakes were the worst. They run forever, but at what cost to your back and body over tough Alaskan terrain...
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    I think you made a good choice. I've got a 2006 Arctic Cat 400. Love the independent suspension and receiver hitch. It has been nothing but reliable ever since I bought it new.
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    I know that I am getting into this one a 'little late', but I agree in that you made a good choice. Being a that we like our Arctic Cat's, you did just fine. There are several good brands for ATV out there and I do not think that any of them are 'really bad'. Just suit us better then others.
    Have fun and enjoy!

  19. #19
    Member Float Pilot's Avatar
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    She seems to be working out just fine.
    I can swap the tow hitch ball size in 30 seconds because I have a couple receiver mounts with different size balls.
    She goes pretty good through the bushes as well.

    Her she is with my $200 firewood trailer. I need to figure out how to put larger tires on the trailer.

    I still cannot see my own photos..... What the heck???
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