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Old 02-08-2011, 09:01 PM   #1
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ATV for 11 year old

I know this may turn into a subjective discussion, but my boy needs an upgrade...

He's had an 2008 Arctic Cat 90 for going on three years now (since he was 8,) & had a Honda 50 motorbike since he was 5.
I understand the less than 150CC rule for younger than 16 years of age wag, but I also know he can definitely handle a larger machine.

Since AC no longer makes the 250 (& the 300 is in actuality only 20CCs bigger,) I thought I'd get something he'll grow into, as opposed to the 150 Youth model that he'd certainly grow out of within a coupla more years.

He's smaller statured @ 4' & ~ 65 pounds or so, but pretty strong for his size. I of course don't want to get him something that's just too big for him to handle safely.

To those w/ a 150, 250, or 300 please chime in with your thoughts. I've looked at the specs on paper, but without watching him operate one it's just difficult to get a good visual image of a size reference.

Thanks!

Edited to add: I just found this thread : http://www.arcticchat.com/forum/perf...-year-old.html
& may just look for an older 4x4. I'd love to get him a 366, but think that would prolly be too much for him.
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Old 02-08-2011, 09:06 PM   #2
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300 should do him good, im 21 and i love my 300, it only does about 80 but is awesome in mud it has hi low and super low so it'll turn anything, keep up with basic maint and it should last him untill his late 20s or up's to another.
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Old 02-08-2011, 09:13 PM   #3
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 Quote: Originally Posted by acidburn View Post
300 should do him good, im 21 and i love my 300, it only does about 80 but is awesome in mud it has hi low and super low so it'll turn anything, keep up with basic maint and it should last him untill his late 20s or up's to another.

80? Really? What year is your 300?
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Old 02-08-2011, 09:15 PM   #4
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yes 80km, i have no speedo and that was clocked on snow from my buddys skidoo, and its a 98, and still kicking stong!
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Old 02-08-2011, 10:24 PM   #5
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finally something i can give some advice on! maturity is everything...hotdogging and small body mass equals disasaster,sorry!my son has had a 300cc artic cat for two years,way mature beyond his years.he has been given constant reminders of what can happen...a feeding tube for life is not pleasent...he weighs in at approx 80lbs and is extremely carefull.he drives my kubota's with ease...but i do worry,center of gravity is what it is.personally i really wouldn't put a kid of that size on any bigger than a 150yet.both of my sons are under constant supervision,my 10year old runs a 110yamaha and couldn't be happier,he weighs approx 115lbs and 5foot2-3high.don't rush your kid into a bigger machine...p.s a 300 cat does not go 80kms(50miles)and hour,unless you have a turbo or nitro.my 500polaris sportsman barely did that.i'll recheck the speedo with my jeep but 50-60 is much more reasonable....i just checked my 366 and his 300.exactly same ride height and same width..weight unsure.i don't know about governing abilty-both are left stock...he's allowed to plow with mine thats it.

Last edited by countryacres; 02-08-2011 at 10:31 PM. Reason: left out info
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Old 02-08-2011, 11:02 PM   #6
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trust me it does 80kms and this was on hard packed snow, i have tested it twice now with 2 different skidoos so i know the speedos aint wrong. and im pretty sure 500sp supose to only do 90 max.. so yeah.
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Old 02-08-2011, 11:07 PM   #7
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i'll gladdly retest with neighbours bm'er on asphalt...let's compare apples to apples-are you running stock tire height?
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Old 02-08-2011, 11:08 PM   #8
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just a bit of quick googling and iv found so far the 300 max is 45mph im not sure if my bike has any mods to it as i bought it used but anyways thats 72km stock, the 500sp does 60mph stock witch is 97kph, btw sp weighs 200 pounds more then the 300.. sportsman = 750lbs , 300 = 550lbs

Last edited by acidburn; 02-08-2011 at 11:09 PM. Reason: tires are stock front and 26x11x12 goodyear rawhide backs, *stock sportsmans* lol
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Old 02-09-2011, 04:06 AM   #9
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An older 4x4 in my oppinion would be the best way to go. only you know the responsibility level of your child and if you think that he is good to ride a bigger machine then you are most likely right.

If you go with an older 4x4 it will last him a while. It will save you from in a few years time having to upgrade him again to a machine with 4wd.
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Old 02-09-2011, 09:44 AM   #10
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I am not so sure on going that big. I too have an 11 year old, about 70 pounds maybe, and I think the 90 is as heavy a machine as she can ride well.
Not in terms of speed but simply ability to hold those handlebars against the terrain.
Sheer size or top speed isn't what I think would be a problem- it's that 70lbs isn't alot to put behind the bars for leverage.
On a larger scale, it's the same for adults and that's why there is a power steering boom now, because a 200lbs guy still has a difficult time turning bars against terrain with a 800lbs machine.
Scaled up, it's the same weight ratio (rider to machine) that drove the whole PS trend in ATVs for big machines.
Nothing to do with rider skill or maturity, simply that kids as small as ours are WAY out of their league trying to muscle a machine that big.
My experience has been on trails in the woods that may call for having to hold the bars against angled terrain, or over roots and rocks. In these situations, kids tend to be at the mercy of the forces involved on the steering.
Another point is that body placement and motion is a big part of riding on uneven terrain, and 65lbs is even less of factor for a larger machine than that 90cc one.
I think I'd sum it up as- a kid is in control of a youth machine, but is just along for the ride on an adult machine. They may be able to make it go, but if it goes badly...can they cope?
I would be happy to remove the 15mph limiter off of our AC90. If it could do 25mph on open trails and a bit more grunt on bottom, it'd be all the machine my kid needs until she is physically larger herself.
That's just my .02 but we have the same age/size kids and ATV's.
--to play devil's advocate to my own post though-- all ATV's should have reverse, but our 90 doesn't....and I considered a bigger machine for my daughter just to have reverse. She isn't pulling a 250lbs machine out of the bush by herself.
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