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Discussion Starter #1
With such a big change in snowmobiling over the years I was curious to see how many of you actually prefer your older sled over the newer stuff. I haven't ridden anything newer than 2005 but I also haven't ridden since 2008 either so my recently acquired 2000 ZL 500 is probably going to feel like an amazing machine haha. Post your thoughts and a pic!

 

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The newest sled I've rode is my 2000 zr. But the '08-'12 snopros look pretty sweet......still outa my price range though.
 

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I like the power of the triple and with the upgraded suspensions, they truly are hard to beat for power/ride quality/maintenance. Easy to work on and can still make em go. Newer sleds are hard to justify now a days with the lack of snow. I wouldn't want a $12-$14,000 machine sitting in the garage when there is no snow like this year for some people.

I have had an 2007 F5 and currently have a 2012 TZ1. Lots harder to work on but the trade off is nice ride in riding and handling.

I put a 2007 Crossfire skid in my ZRT and an AGLT front end mod on it. 13" of travel up front all done with other used Cat parts. Even the new stuff doesn't have this much travel up front....still. Most parts are still readily available and very affordable too.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I grew up with Indy 500s but always had a fascination with Cats. I remember Snodeo 2003 in Rangeley Maine where the Rev was the weirdest thing I had seen and my lust for Firecats had begun. To this day the Firecat (03-06) is my unicorn sled. I first rode a 1991 Indy
500, my dad then had a 1996 Indy 500 followed by a 2005 Indy 500 but I always liked the look of the A Arm less ZR2 sleds and how they look launching out of a cove on a drag.

It's strange because it seems like I was almost being shamed because my sled was old. 2000 ZL 500 with only 2400 on it, one owner and just needed some refreshing since it sat... I asked what it was worth now that it's running, cleaned up with a new track off of a 13 IQ Shift and was basically bullied into thinking I was crazy when I said people in my area were fetching $1500-2k for a sled like this. I paid $500, $200 for a track with 600 miles on it and $400 at the dealer to install the track, grease it, flush and clean the fuel tank, clean carbs, replace fuel lines and get it fired up again. Compression was good, spark was there and it just needed to be gone through. I just find it so hard to see that the fun, power and at this price for this sled can be matched by $6000-12000 sleds of today.
 

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You really need to ride a newer sled to see what they are all about. They likely are not what you would think.
 

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Agreed. Plus with my 2000 I'm not afraid to have real fun with it. If it breaks, oh well, parts are cheap and plentiful
 

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I have two 2000 z440s, and I've recently upgraded to a 2013 and a 2015 procross chassis. It literally is like night and day when it comes to comfort. Some people don't like riding higher, and I can see that. The newer machines are much easier on my knees and I enjoy the tall, motorcycle feel of the new machines.

Today, I just rode my 2000 for the first time this year and as much as I miss the light weight, sliding around corners like a rice burner drifting, I wouldn't go back if I had the choice. I'm keeping the 440s with hopes that my kiddos are interested in the sport after a couple more years, but if they don't show interest I'll have to get rid of them. They're in pristine condition and are extremely well taken care of, I'd hate to sell them for someone to beat them up :(

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The only sled I've ever rode is my 15 zr6000 RR but I sat on my buddies 98 zr500. I can't imagine riding it for any length of time. It's such a horrible riding position. I can't believe how long they kept the design.
 

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I'm 57 and actually comfortable riding my T660 Turbo Touring. It rides like a Cadillac. I don't have knee issues but I do however like the riding position on my 2016 Bearcat 2000 XT. It's very easy to stand up when you have to.
 

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the only older sled I miss is 500 sno pro. should have never sold it. as far as the old sit down style sleds I would never go back to riding one unless that is all i could get.
 

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It's tough to pick one sled for all riding though. I have thrown a leg over the seat for nearly 38 years now and I miss several sleds I've owned. That said, if I have a high mileage day in front of me, I will most likely be on my 2014 ZR8000 Sno Pro RR simply to be able to do it physically.

I have an AGLT long tracked ZRT 600 that I do still ride and it is much more sled than it was in stock form, I've done a couple 200 mile days on it and it performs well, and doesn't leave me crippled either.

In the back yard I get the 91 EXT 550 special for when my kids are riding too. I just enjoy riding, 20 mph to whatever, trails, hay fields, powder or ice, I don't discriminate, I just ride. This old sled is easy on gas, cheap to fix, and tolerated kids boots on the seat very well.

It all depends what you are doing and for how long what sled is good enough. They are all rolling history of this sport. I just like to ride.
 

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I'm 57 and actually comfortable riding my T660 Turbo Touring. It rides like a Cadillac. I don't have knee issues but I do however like the riding position on my 2016 Bearcat 2000 XT. It's very easy to stand up when you have to.
My brother owns a T660 turbo also, and even going from my z440 to that, there's a huge difference in comfort. Like you said, it's like a Cadillac in comparison. Even going from that to my 2013 1100XF it's still a big jump.

The only complaint about the new sleds is that they're more difficult to work on. It's not as simple as flipping open the hood and grabbing wrenches these days. But man, are they narrow and sleek looking.

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I really do LOVE my ZR CCE and it's pretty light and very nimble and I can throw it around like nobody's business and I've 100% rebuilt it to fit my weight and riding style(A lot of ditch banging).

I've also riden A LOT of the new cats since I have a good "in" at the factory and I can tell you that if I could afford to drop that kind of change on a sled I'd do it in a heart beat and rarely look back and have very little regrets.

The older sleds are a TON of fun and super easy to work on but they are NOT fuel efficient in the slightest meaning of the word and the rider position really is atrocious, it's so hard on the knees, back and hip flexor muscles. I love the rider forward position on the new sleds, it really is night and day difference but it's not something you can just jump on and ride right away like you ride a ZR3 sled, it takes a little time to get used to sitting and riding that high up.
 

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Went from a 2004 King Cat 900 to a 2016 M8000. First fuel injected sled. Waited a long time. Ride is awesome on the new one, no more soreness. Milage is horrible, starts harder, no top end. Have to go to the stealership for service now. I will ride this new one until warrantee is up, then sell it and build my own. Thinking 2010-2012 snopro 500 with a carb 7-800 engine in it. Want the stand up style with old school mechanicals. Then I can tune it for how I ride. For ten grand I can build a hell of a mod sled.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I've always wondered if there was a larger reliability component to the newer generations or if it's the other way around. My sled will probably need new shocks over the summer, I'd like to upgrade the handle bars to a ZR Cross Country set up and of course it needs studs for the new .91 lug track. Hopefully that will turn the good ole ZL into a much better machine.
 

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I love my 91 EXT special (pic in signature). I ride it on OFSC trails, fields, lakes, wherever. Even with the upgraded rear ETT/TSL suspension, its no where near as comfortable as newer sleds, but still pretty darn fun and peppy. Its a breeze to work on and I know it inside out. My friend that I ride with, rides older sleds too...he has a 94 Vmax 600 and a 98 Indy Super Sport (488 fan). We always joke about how we have the oldest sleds on the trail and how we'd love to own new ones. But in reality, its just about getting out and having fun on them.
I just wish there was a way to upgrade the front suspension on these old AWS l sleds...
 

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I don't think I've put 100 miles on my ZRT 600 since buying my 13 F800 which now has around 6k miles on it. I love the riding position of the new sleds and will NEVER go back to riding the old iron for anything more than a few quick rips across the field. The only things I miss about the older chassis are the easy point and shoot handling and being able to burn 87 fuel. I have my new sleds dialed in now, but it still takes more rider effort/movement to ride them fast through the turns. When the trails get rough there's no comparison. The Procross just eats the bumps.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I guess I had better stay away from newer cats so I don't ruin my experience with my 00 ZL. I've always wanted a 2003 Firecat though, didn't care if it was an F5 or F5, Carb or EFI. The devil on my shoulder even contemplated selling the 2400 mile ZL for an 03 F5 but sentiment and money are an issue!
 
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