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****Part numbers are now listed below.****

It seems more and more guys are realizing the benefits of extending 121” sleds to 136”. The benefits are better ride quality and better off-trail capabilities. There really are no downsides to this conversion, other than taking up a little more space in your trailer and garage. I ride in the wide trails of the UP and the tight and twisties of northern Wisconsin. My friend rides a ProX and we’ve always been aggressive on the trails. I can say that I haven’t given anything up to him on the trails with the longer skids under my sleds. A person may have to take a little time to adjust the suspension for the longer sled to get the right setup, but it isn’t hard and won’t take long to find the benefits of this project. Following is info I’ve gathered or learned while extending two of my sleds to 136” skids. If you decide to do this conversion, I hope this info will help you.

SKID OPTIONS....solid rails or extensions

Longer Rails:
- A 1 piece rail should be stronger than two joined pieces.
- Solid rails allow the rear arm to be moved back in the tunnel, equaling similar geometry as stock. This is how Cat does it from the factory on 136” sleds.
- Will need to relocate rear arm mounting bracket farther back in tunnel by 4.5", or make your own bracket and install behind current one.
- Measurement from front arm to rear arm mounting holes will now be 30.75".
- Sometimes you can purchase a complete used 136” skid for a price similar to what just the rails will go for, if you can find just the rails. Such a skid can come from a Powder Special, Pantera, or the newer Crossfires. As any other time when buying used suspension parts, you’ll need to verify the condition of the shocks, bearings, etc. With one of my sleds, I bought a complete Pantera skid, tore it down, and replaced all the parts with the arms and shocks from my ZR. I did have to drill a couple extra holes in the rails for a couple of the axles. This was not hard to do, just measure 10 times and cut once.

[attachment=133200:TunlBrktNew.jpg]

[attachment=133201:New136skid.jpg]

Rail Extensions:
- These are fabbed pieces that are added to the rear of the factory 121” rails.
- I believe these have become popular because they require a lot less work than going with longer rails.
- Rear arm doesn’t have to/can’t be moved back in the tunnel. Thus, the geometry of the skid will not be the same as Cat’s factory 136” sleds.
- TracksUSA.com offers great packages for going with extensions, including a track and tunnel extension.
- Rail extensions may be easier to find than complete rails.


TUNNEL EXTENSION

- There are several choices for your tunnel extension. Some guys have done really well making their own. If that’s not an option, here are a few sources:
1. Tracks USA
2. SLP
3. OEM, p/n ??????, black. Ask your dealer for the p/n of the polished aluminum one if that’s what you need.
- If you go with the OEM piece, you will not be able to use your bumper. However, you can use a Cat aluminum bumper, p/n 0616-502, from a Bearcat. At first I didn’t like the thought of going with the “older” bumper, but it has worked out very well. Some guys have cracked the plastic bumpers, so this will alleviate that concern. With the bumper, you will also need to order the plastic end caps (p/n 0616-396 right and –397 left) and rubber insert (p/n 0616-504) to finish off the look. The good thing is these parts are readily available used on ebay and the classified boards.
- The OEM also has the rolled edges at the floorboards to compliment the factory look. You will want to insert a 4” aluminum “peg” in the rolled edges where the extension meets the original running board. This will add strength to the tunnel. You will need to bend this peg slightly to match the contour of the extension meeting the running boards.
- The OEM piece is becoming more rare, as Cat is fading out their stock. When I did my first sled, it retailed for $98. When I did the next one, the price had gone up to $198. Even with this increase, the price is still in line with most of the aftermarket companies. I think the Cat piece has a better finished look too. It also gives you 8" of space for a rack or tie-downs behind the seat.

[attachment=133209:DSCN3737.JPG]

SPRINGS

When the skid is lengthened, the geometry of the suspension is also changed. With the first sled I extended, it bottomed out easily on the first ride. I called my dealer and he enlightened me on the geometry issue. Because of this, you should upgrade the rear springs to stiffer ones. On both of my sleds, I went with the springs from the similar cc Mtn Cat model. This has worked well on my ZR and Tcat. If you want to test this yourself, keep your stock springs and go for a ride. You should notice a much softer ride. However, you’ll need to remove the skid again if you then decide to go with the stiffer springs later. Remember, if you’ve already upgraded to heavier springs because you’re a “heavier” guy, take this into consideration when ordering the new springs for the longer skid.

TRACKS

Several options exist for tracks. As with any sled, you’ll need to decide what type of riding you do most, and go from there. It seems that most guys who do this project do it because they ride the trails, but also want the ability to go off trail when they feel the desire. For this reason, an “all-around” type track may be best. Then you need to decide what height lugs you want. I believe most of the late model Cats will easily accept a 1.25” lug, and some will take a 1.5” if you notch the lugs that line up with the coolers in the tunnel. If you want taller lugs than that, you’ll need to change the drivers to allow for clearance in the tunnel. I’ve gone with the 1.25” Ripsaw on both of my sleds, and have been very pleased with them. I put 4000 miles on the first one, and when I sold the sled the track still looked practically new. It provides great traction, and more than satisfactory floatation in the deep stuff. Even with my “heavy” Tcat, I can play in the off trail powder and not get stuck as long as I use common sense. A friend and I usually take the last day of our trips in the UP and spend it off trail. The last time we did this, the snow was easily four feet deep, and I could stop, and take off with no problems.

[attachment=133193:pwdrTcatSide.jpg]

Some guys have also spoken well of the Predator track. It appears to be another great “all purpose” track, with good reliability. This is the track that TracksUSA used to provide in their packages, but I looked recently and it’s not listed, so it may be discontinued. They are offering the Ripsaw in their packages now.

COOLERS

An option to consider with this project is whether or not to extend the coolant lines in the tunnel. You can research this all day long, and you will find guys that haven’t done it and have no problems, and other guys that strongly believe this is necessary. My experience tells me it really depends on what conditions you ride in, and how big of an engine you have. I did not extend them on my ZR800, and never had an issue with overheating except one day when we had to travel about two miles on a bare road. The idiot light came on, and we were able to get into some powder and all was fine. With that said, I ride 90% trails and 10% in powder, so I don’t deal with low or no snow conditions on a regular basis. On my Tcat, I didn’t extend them at first and had no issues. The first season with the extended skid was spent in the UP in one of their best winters in a long time. The temps barely rose above 0, and there was 4-5 feet of snow on the ground, with fresh stuff every day. We put 800 miles on that trip. The next year was not so nice. Temps were in the 30’s and the snow wasn’t great. My sled overheated due to the pto seal going bad and the pto piston locked up. I noticed the temps going up on the temp gauge, but thought I could get the sled back to the motel by dipping off trail for snow every once in a while. Doing that did bring the temps down shortly, but it wasn’t good enough and the seizure happened. I’m thinking if I had a rear cooler in the tunnel, it might have bought me more time to get back to the truck. I installed a rear cooler from a mountain sled this winter.

[attachment=133197:Cooler3.jpg]

[attachment=133195:Coppercooler.jpg]

There are several options to extend the coolers. Cat has made (not sure if they’re still available from dealer) longer coolers, just like the short ones in your sled now. You’ll need to remove all the rivets holding the short coolers in, remove the coolers, and rivet the longer ones in. There are also coolers that fasten to the top or rear of your tunnel, and connect to the existing coolers in your sled. These are offered by aftermarket companies, and some guys have made their own. If you’re handy enough, you can use a cooler from a completely different sled and make it work. I used a cooler from an ’05 M1 and modified it for my needs.

One thing I highly recommend, if you haven’t already done so, is to install a water temp gauge. I don’t know how/why I rode without one for so many years. I guess I just assumed that I didn’t need one since I perform strict maintenance on my sleds. However, accidents happen and we can’t prepare for everything. Since cooling is sometimes an issue with longer tracks, I would urge everyone who does this project to spend the $80 and buy the Cat temp gauge, p/n ???????. Several guys use automotive temp gauges with no problems, and are probably cheaper. However, I believe Cat’s gauge comes with all connections needed, is simpler to install, and of course it matches the other gauges perfectly on the dash.

[attachment=133202:dash.jpg]

GEARING

The question of changing gears to accommodate the longer track arises from time to time. If you were satisfied with the gearing of your sled before extending the skid, you will be fine with the longer track too. The only exceptions I would say exist, are if you have a smaller cc sled, and/or if you’re going with really tall lugs, and/or you expect to change your riding style to more hill/mtn riding in really deep snow. I did not change the gearing in my ZR or Tcat, and haven’t seen any need to do so in the future.

MISCELLANEOUS

While you have everything apart, you might as well order and replace the drive shaft bearings. Of course, if it’s been a while since you replaced the skid bearings, now would be a great time to replace those also.

You’ll need to pick up a couple packs of rivets. For the tunnel’s exterior rivets, get about ???? ???/??? aluminum rivets. Some of the ones on top of the tunnel, under the seat, are larger at ????/????. You’ll only need about ???? of these. Go with aluminum to avoid rusting issues.

OEM PART NUMBERS

Tunnel Extension..................1706-943
Bumper...............................1606-143
Blk insert f/bumper...............616-700
Rt side cap for bumper..........616-396
Lft side cap for bumper..........616-397

LINKS

www.brownsleisureworld.com/ Microfiche of Cat sled parts
VanAmburg
SLP
TracksUSA
http://blairps.com/sections.php?s=sn&c=79&p=4
http://www.slp.cc/catalog.cfm?pageID=detai...p;productID=264
http://www.mcbperformance.com/extensions.html
http://www.hiperf.com/acatalog/Snowmobile_...nsions_200.html

If you choose this project, I hope you have as much fun with it as I and many others have had.

[attachment=133203:DSCN5036.JPG]

[attachment=133204:Melanding.JPG]

[attachment=133206:pwdrTcatRr.jpg]

[attachment=133207:136Finishd2.jpg]

[attachment=133208:KenStuck1.jpg] My buddy, w/out a 136", lol!
 

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i will add to the skid mounting locations. i have a 2002 mountain cat 1000 skid and it uses the same rear mounting holes as the stock 121. i also have a skid from a 2000 mountain cat the is mounted about 7.5 inches further back.
 

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Very nice job on the write up!!
I am long tracking my 2000 T-Cat as we speak.
Thanks again.
Peace,beeler
 

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every thing looks cool but in not sold on the bumper ied think if i were to convert ied use the 00-01 sno pro round bumper bar my 2 cents
 

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Great write up. TC on your T-Cat pictured is that the tracks USA tunnel ext and if it is what length oe did you get to have the extra room for what looks like a rack set up?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (hyrczyk @ Sep 5 2009, 10:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
Great write up. TC on your T-Cat pictured is that the tracks USA tunnel ext and if it is what length oe did you get to have the extra room for what looks like a rack set up?[/b]
That is the 136" extension from Cat. I couldn't find a rack that I liked well for the space back there, so I finally ended up modifying some Crossfire racks and bolted them down.

Thanks for the comments guys. As I referenced in the title, for those of you that have already done this, please add your experiences too. AG may pin this topic if there's enough interest.
 

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<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (TallCool1 @ Sep 6 2009, 11:32 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (hyrczyk @ Sep 5 2009, 10:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Great write up. TC on your T-Cat pictured is that the tracks USA tunnel ext and if it is what length oe did you get to have the extra room for what looks like a rack set up?[/b]
That is the 136" extension from Cat. I couldn't find a rack that I liked well for the space back there, so I finally ended up modifying some Crossfire racks and bolted them down.

Thanks for the comments guys. As I referenced in the title, for those of you that have already done this, please add your experiences too. AG may pin this topic if there's enough interest.
[/b][/quote]
I'll have to call cat and see if they still make that tunnel kit.
 

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some pics of a 136 inch setup..
 

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<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (insaincat @ Sep 7 2009, 08:25 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
Sure got enough WEEDS in it! Is that from ditch bangin?[/b]
Hell who knows, this sled is from team HOMO as UECAR states. I took the pics, sled is setup for grass drags or whatever, notice the one to many idler wheels...its ok...I love the graphics on it though.
 

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<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (Danzig @ Sep 7 2009, 09:30 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (insaincat @ Sep 7 2009, 08:25 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Sure got enough WEEDS in it! Is that from ditch bangin?[/b]
Hell who knows, this sled is from team HOMO as UECAR states. I took the pics, sled is setup for grass drags or whatever, notice the one to many idler wheels...its ok...I love the graphics on it though.
[/b][/quote]


slaphappy
 

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i just upgraded the front end of my sled to 03 arms and floats and the rear with zero pros but i had wanted to find an m10 136 for awhile.. did your sled come with it or did you buy it seperate? i've seen some for polaris but never for a cat and i've read that people have just made new mounting holes for it to work
 

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<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (priesman64 @ Sep 7 2009, 10:34 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
i just upgraded the front end of my sled to 03 arms and floats and the rear with zero pros but i had wanted to find an m10 136 for awhile.. did your sled come with it or did you buy it seperate? i've seen some for polaris but never for a cat and i've read that people have just made new mounting holes for it to work[/b]
I purchased it straight from Fast along with the front end . that was the m-10 ace where I could adjust the ride on the fly
 
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