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Thread: Best side by sides

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    Member Mammoth Hunter's Avatar
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    Default Best side by sides

    Experts, what are the best and worst side by sides for hunting? I have heard Yamaha is the best for not breaking down. I have four wheelers and have decided it's time to move up a notch for hunting with the wifey. Looking for recommendations from experienced riders as I begin the winter months search, for the next rig purchase.

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    Member Rob B's Avatar
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    I have a Yamaha Viking. Itís been a rock solid machine but it is very underpowered. Iíve ridden is many of the other brands and honestly I think the Kawasaki Teryx is the best machine around nowadays.


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    I am a not an expert on sxs's and bought my first one this summer. I am a longtime Yamaha fan and have 2 Grizzlys and 2 VK540's. I looked at the Viking with intention of getting one, however they are a bit under powered (I think this will change in the next year with the new 850 engine from the sport sxs). I liked the sportiness of the Wolverine but not the space and my wife did not care for it. The Viking rear suspension is rather under built for putting any weight on it, so a lift is likely required for what I wanted. Adding other things I wanted either were quite pricey, or not available. I think for 1 or 2 people out to do some work or hunt it would be a great rig and they have a very loyal following. Big Lake Yamaha has been amazing to do business with and I can't imagine going anywhere else for the Yamahas. I think when they put the Wolverine engine in the Viking, it will be a big hit.

    We decided on a Polaris Ranger XP1000 Crew after looking at a few brands/models and reading quite a bit. The final deciding factor was dealing with the folks at HPAK. They gave me a fair price and the shocker was that they did not charge anything for installing the extras that I wanted. Installing a heater/defroster, metal roof and doors, windshields, etc adds up quickly in hourly rates and they did not charge one penny. It is a quiet, stable, roomy machine that is powerful and can tow quite a bit. The dealer is just great to do business with.

    I think it is hard to go wrong with any of the newer improved machines, so I doubt you will make a bad decision. I think I would have been pleased with a number of the sxs's but my wife REALLY likes the XP1000, so I am happy with the choice. Many rides have a loyal following so plan to get differing opinions. If it means anything, my favorite Yamaha mechanic has 2 Rangers.

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    Member Doug in Alaska's Avatar
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    I absolutely love my 2016 Polaris Ranger 800 EFI 6x6. Don't want to offend anyone, just my opinion. Awesome machine.
    Someday someone may kill you with your own gun, but they should have to beat you to death with it because it is empty.

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    Member Mammoth Hunter's Avatar
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    Good info, thanks. Also I'm primarily looking for hauling space - a good bed, can seat 4 (back fold down seats). Strong lift - tent, gear and a moose or two caribou, 6 deer capable. 4 wheel drive. Are you guys using boat anchors to winch out of swamps?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mammoth Hunter View Post
    Good info, thanks. Also I'm primarily looking for hauling space - a good bed, can seat 4 (back fold down seats). Strong lift - tent, gear and a moose or two caribou, 6 deer capable. 4 wheel drive. Are you guys using boat anchors to winch out of swamps?

    Haven't needed it, but have a PullPal in the large size so can use it for truck as well. The guys at Trail Toyz in Wasilla recommended it- nice folks in there. They have some really nice folding traction devices that are made for serious weight- not the flimsy ones.

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    Member EMoss#83's Avatar
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    I have a 2014 polaris ranger xp900 that I like, but my next purchase may be a Honda pioneer 1000,I believe that Honda will be on top in the near future - they have really stepped up their game
    ďThank you Polaris for making me a better mechanicĒ

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    I donít know which brand is best but I have a RZR and 4 wheeler from Polaris now for 4 years of heavy use with no issues. Agree that Hatcher Pass Polaris are super great to work with.

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    Don't rule out the Honda Pioneers. I run one and love it, no belts to deal with. Not as fancy as some of the other brands but i've had very little problems. I also run a 6x6 atv, and love that as well. If I had to do it all over again it would go with a ranger 6x6. There were a few on craigslist with low miles.

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    Member Mammoth Hunter's Avatar
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    What's the preference out there.......buy new from dealer (no worries) or buy used on Craigslist (there's like 35 to choose from), risky maybe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gokorn1 View Post
    Don't rule out the Honda Pioneers. I run one and love it, no belts to deal with. Not as fancy as some of the other brands but i've had very little problems. I also run a 6x6 atv, and love that as well. If I had to do it all over again it would go with a ranger 6x6. There were a few on craigslist with low miles.
    Iím happy with my Honda Pioneer 700-4. Good machine. Not terribly fast, but plenty of power and the ability to go from a 2 seater with a bed to a 4 seater.

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    I run a 2016 Ranger 900 XP and love it. I looked at buying a CanAm Defender, but got tired of dealing with the CanAm dealership and the run around they gave us. I had previously bought from HPAK in 2014, and I went back to them when we bought the Ranger. I have burnt a belt up on it, but that was all my fault.

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    Member Mammoth Hunter's Avatar
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    Well I decided on the Honda Pioneer 1000-5. Looks to have everything I want, just not cheap.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mammoth Hunter View Post
    Well I decided on the Honda Pioneer 1000-5. Looks to have everything I want, just not cheap.
    Congratulations on making a decision (that is hard to do at times). I am sure you will be happy with it. Accessories add up quickly so stay safe and enjoy it!

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    I had an Arctic Cat Prowler HDX 700 for a couple years but after being a touch under-powered for the mountains, and blowing a rear diff housing, I switched to a Honda Pioneer 1000-5 and will never look back. I've been a Yamaha guy for many years but their utility machines are lacking and that's what drove me to the Prowler. My buddy I ride with had a Ranger 800 XP and switched to the Pioneer 1000-5 LE and I'll tell you the only regret he has is not doing it much sooner. They have plenty of power and the quality of a Honda really does show through in just about every aspect. I will also suggest that if you do look at the Pioneers go for the 1000 and if you can swing it get the 5 seater. There's nothing wrong with the 3 seat but the full body roll cage with a roof is really, really, nice to have. Everything in the bed stays protected and you have two extra seats if needed. That came in handy for my Wife and myself when I picked up two guys that were stranded on the trail, they were really happy to have seats instead of riding in the bed.

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