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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is it a specific thing? Can they be reliable after they have been rebuilt with new pistons and cylinders, or should I stay away from it. There is a guy selling a 94 ZR580 that has already had a jug replaced, but not by him, so he knows nothing about it. I think I can get a good deal, just wondering how good they are after they've been repaired. Thanks.
 

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PM Wes. His name on this site is 94ZR580. He will have some answers for you, he's sittin on a shredded motor right now.
 

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i had a 97 ext 580 an at 4000 miles the top end was rebuilt 3 times because of the same thing.i think the pin in the ring groove broke and that allowed the ring to turn and catch the exhaust port which chewed up the cylinder and piston.
 

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I put 5500 miles on my '95 580 without any type of pistons problems. I have heard, however, that they do tend to break piston skirts after the 5k mark.

Just don't over-rev them!
 

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As far as Im conserned its crappy pistons! Ive never been impressed with any stock Cat piston though. Arctic Cat claims that the problem is too much heat. I do not believe them! We put Wiseco pistons in them all the time, and I have yet to see one of those do it.

Im the wrench at a cat dealer, and we have completely stopped using Cat pistons in 580's. In the past, when we still used stock pistons, we have had engines that had turned a ring, do it again with in 1000 miles. So far, ever since we started putting Wiseco's in them Not a single one of them has had a failure! I am convinced!

We have started trying to push Wiesco pistons on all of our customers who are in for a rebuild of a Cat sled. :thumbsup:
 

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the 94 zr580 was a self destructor,with the factory pistons they never had enough meat around the wrist pins and did rip the botom of the piston out,when mine blew up and i was putting it back together i noticed a big difference in the amount of aluminum around the wrist pins bosses between the oem pistons i was putting in compared to the 1 that was left,and that was typical for the 97 580,i seen machines with 400 miles that did the same thing and there was lots of them do that too, i complained to arctic cat warranty about the lightness of the pistons and even though i was over a year off warranty they did fess up and gave me back a portion of the money back
 

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I have a 96' ZR580 and my motor blew
I took it to a friend who rebuilt it and I've
put almost 1,000 miles on since. One side was
fine but the other had the skirt blown off
a hole almost all the way through the top and
alot of blow-by on one half. My friend said the
injectors were blocked and that caused it to
get to hot.
 

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Topic has come up lots of times on lots of boards.............remember seeing more than one person say they saw poor life out of the Wiseco pistons just like the stockers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Boy oh boy, this makes it sooo hard to decide. Like I said, I can get a killer deal on a 94, but maybe as soon as I get it home, I would need to upgrade to a set of wisecos.
 

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<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (jagger @ Dec 29 2006, 10:04 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
Boy oh boy, this makes it sooo hard to decide. Like I said, I can get a killer deal on a 94, but maybe as soon as I get it home, I would need to upgrade to a set of wisecos.[/b]

I would! We consider stock 580 pistons to be a matter of time. The only good use I have found for them is to plug the hose on our exhaust ventilation system in the shop. They fit in the hose perfectly! That is all they are good for imo
 

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I have a 1997 ZR 580 efi, and bought it from the original owner. He replaced the pistons at 3k because he heard that they were tough on skirts. He gave me the originals, and they are like new, but he did put in Wiesco. I have over 5k on in now, and the thing runs like new.

Just make sure you warm them up before you put them to the bar. Good engines in my opinion.
 

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If it is a new cylinder, or a replated cylinder, then it will be as good as new, as far as that part is concerned. I have always used OEM pistons in my 94 ZR580 and the only time I had a piston related problem was when I got a couple of pistons with the locator pin problem. I had the two pistons and one cylinder replaced at no cost. I lost one piston due to water in the gas, which turned to ice in the carb, and resulted in lean burn down. I had another lean burn down as the result of an air leak. Both of those were just stuff that happens and no relation to model, or manufacturer. Those are all easy to fix, the big problem, and my current one, is when you lose a big end bearing on a connecting rod at 8000 RPM. That makes a real mess.

Any machine of this age, regardless of brand, is a risk. Old sleds are only a good deal if you have the ability to, or interest in fixing them when they break, because they will break, and you have to expect that to happen. Old machines are a time bomb and you never know when the fuse will reach the end.
 
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