Hardcore Sledder banner
1 - 20 of 108 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
324 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started snowmobiling in the fall on 1991. Became obsessed with snowmobiles almost immediately and did every sort of riding and racing over the next 15 years. To me it was the best time to be in the sport because so their was so much innovation and the sport was strong. Family and kids came around so the sport took a back burner. I'm going on my 3rd or 4th year back in the sport and while I've stayed involved with snowmobiles while I was away the amount of change I've seen now that I'm fully back in just amazes me. I'm curious what other feel has been the biggest change to the sport while they've been in it.

To me it's durability. When I first got into the sport 100 miles was a big day and you were leery of sleds with more than 1500 miles. People traded in every year. The idea of 300 mile days and 2500 mile years were way out there. Now 300 mile days are common and 1000 mile weekends are no sweat. When I got into it the sleds would never hold up.

Anyway, love to hear your thoughts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,744 Posts
Suspension. I had the ability to to keep them running even from a young age , but what allows me to put miles on these days is the suspensions. They make it so I can ride my 100-130 mile ride and be willing to do it again the next day. Years back we would do 100 miles here and were beat to hell the next day.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45,560 Posts
When i did my first trip to quebec with my new leftover 76 5000 el'tigre it was a pita doing premix at every gas stop. Some places had premix at the pumps, but if you got your gas first thing on a -30 morning the pumps premix motor didn't do a very good job of premixing the fuel as you pumped it....not good. What a relief it was when i got a 79 exciter with oil injection, not to mention better suspension.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
780 Posts
Performance...The 69 Rupp Sno Sport was 18ish hp...The 71 Ski Doo Oly was 24hp...Today if I wanted to I could ride those same trails on a 350-400 hp sled...BUT...Actually I think the best thing the sport has seen is the evolution of trail groomers....
 
  • Like
Reactions: Olgreen

·
Registered
Joined
·
45,560 Posts
For me. The biggest improvement is ergonomics. God they are good on newer sleds. Having changed my older edges and gen 2 into "rider forward" sleds. That was always the best thing I did to all of them. That alone made the sleds feel better and easier on my body.

Second is suspension.
Gotta agree on the ergo's, but it only seemed related to the polaris sleds as they never fit me very good. Suspensions definitely got better along with shock guys now out there being able to make an even bigger difference.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
471 Posts
Just in the short time I've been in the sport I've witnessed losses of trails... can't help but think we'll only see more of this if attitudes of non-sledders don't improve.
No doubt intolerance against snowmobiling has grown, BUT suffice to say there are many riders who fail to see the consequences of their ill-thought actions (ie. trespassing on private property, using noisy exhaust systems, excessive speed in residential areas,...). We need to get our own house in order before crying foul...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,312 Posts
Sledding has changed so much from when I started in the mid 60’s it’s almost not the same sport. No groomed trails the odd single lane dragged with homemade 3 foot wide drag. Then it started ( some may remember ) groomed trails but with a median in the middle. Then when sleds got too wide here in Quebec we went to an 8 foot single lane which grew to what we have now10 foot draggs which are staggered any where possible to some Trans Quebec trails that are 30 feet wide.

Back in the 60’s we would sled all day never get more than 30 miles from home and change about 2 or 3 sets of plugs. The clothing would get wet and soggy , lots wore construction boots and open face helmets and goggles or an old style bubble face shield that fogged in the blink of an eye was the norm. Oh the good old days. No e start and lots of sleds had a metal cable for a pull cord which often wouldn’t return back into the motor so you had to jiggle them until they finally went in enough to not run over them. You young guys have never had the chance to ride a steel cleated track on ice! Wow that could scare the shit out of you so quick it was crazy. I could go on and on. All I can say I endured it all and still love it as much as ever.

Now I’m riding with e start, heated seat, heated thumb & grips, studded track, adjustable seat, reverse, no oil to mix, heated visor, full face helmets that are warm, gortex suit that keeps you dry, adjustable suspensions and on and on. So to compare early years to now is impossible. It’s 2 different sports. Lol
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
268 Posts
Yes , a lot has changed for the better of comfort for sure. Now, if I had the sleds like today back when I was 25... but to be honest I wouldn’t change a thing about spending those yrs back when (70s,-90s) there was excitement in the sport like no other time imo. A lot more folks could and did enjoy the sport as it was much more affordable. I honestly have more fond memories of those yrs than the last 20. But the sleds today are amazing but just at the breaking point too darn expensive. It’s likely today, one of the most expensive sports per mile.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,872 Posts
Performance...The 69 Rupp Sno Sport was 18ish hp...The 71 Ski Doo Oly was 24hp...Today if I wanted to I could ride those same trails on a 350-400 hp sled...BUT...Actually I think the best thing the sport has seen is the evolution of trail groomers....
Youve got that right.Its funny how now people complain about 6” stutter bumps but in the 80s when I could first trail ride there were bumps that you had to stand to ride over with dirt between them.
Its also odd to hear mention of 100 mile days Because I remember LOTS of 200 plus mile days right from when i could trail ride.My dad xc raced in the 60s and 70s so saying I was tired really wasnt an option.The 90s sleds were actually pretty reliable.There are plenty of them running around yet today.The newer sleds are probably no more rrliable,just more expensive.I wrench on sleds every day and I dont think a 2015 will be around in 2035.A lot of the sleds from 2005 to 2010 are already long gone.
That being said,the sleds from around 2010 or newer are considerably easier to do high milage days with than the older sleds.Its interesting to see doo take the leap into semi active suspension so it will be interesting to see where that leads and who follows suit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,872 Posts
Yes , a lot has changed for the better of comfort for sure. Now, if I had the sleds like today back when I was 25... but to be honest I wouldn’t change a thing about spending those yrs back when (70s,-90s) there was excitement in the sport like no other time imo. A lot more folks could and did enjoy the sport as it was much more affordable. I honestly have more fond memories of those yrs than the last 20. But the sleds today are amazing but just at the breaking point too darn expensive. It’s likely today, one of the most expensive sports per mile.
I have extremely fond memories of 90s snowmobiling.It seemed like those were the years just before everybody became butthurt over everything.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,923 Posts
Youve got that right.Its funny how now people complain about 6” stutter bumps but in the 80s when I could first trail ride there were bumps that you had to stand to ride over with dirt between them.
Its also odd to hear mention of 100 mile days Because I remember LOTS of 200 plus mile days right from when i could trail ride.My dad xc raced in the 60s and 70s so saying I was tired really wasnt an option.The 90s sleds were actually pretty reliable.There are plenty of them running around yet today.The newer sleds are probably no more rrliable,just more expensive.I wrench on sleds every day and I dont think a 2015 will be around in 2035.A lot of the sleds from 2005 to 2010 are already long gone.
That being said,the sleds from around 2010 or newer are considerably easier to do high milage days with than the older sleds.Its interesting to see doo take the leap into semi active suspension so it will be interesting to see where that leads and who follows suit.
Once they went to rider forward it’s been real hard for me to out ride the suspension. The old sit on sleds I could do it easily
 
1 - 20 of 108 Posts
Top