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Archive for December, 2010

December 29, 2010

Manitoba Visits

Wednesday the 29th and I am back in the office after a few days off with my family. A new sled is sitting in the back yard, trail pass prominently plastered on the windshield, tank is topped-off, now all I need is some fresh snow. Looking back to the week before Christmas, I traveled to Winnipeg Manitoba and had a good visit with the guys at Wildwood and Winnipeg Sports. Snow was skinny but the cold weather and white dusting had spirits high, hoping for a good season. I traveled west to Brandon and it was a whole new ball game with lots more snow and even colder temps. I came quite close to meeting ‘Turk’ who I have followed on Totallyamaha for a number of years. He is a tech adviser on the forum and one who is well respected for offering up reliable and helpful information to many of the members. As it turns out he lives quite close to  Brandon Marine and Leisure, but Bill warned against disturbing him too early in the day 😉

My trip terminated up in Lac du Bonnet where I got to meet Justin and tour his toy-box. Interesting story he had, where last year he was given the opportunity to ride one of the factory race team FXNytro’s at a couple of regional events stateside, where he came out of nowhere won his heats and mains then disappeared back to the prairies as quickly as he arrived. His own sled (another FX10) sports additional gussets and war wounds as testament to his ‘take no prisoners’ riding style. Also spotted an SXR600 in his shop getting its 20,000 mile tune-up (fresh rings and some bushings) ‘just because’. The owner could afford a new sled but elects to run the high miler because it’s fun to rub it in to his buddies who are now on their  fifth and sixth ‘brand X’ machines over the same period of time.

We copied a bulletin to our dealers regarding track studding just before the holidays started with the intention to ease some concerns  and clarify our formal position. End of the day we do not recommend or endorse track studding (never have). As far as clearance and application goes, if you were to disregard our position it is possible to add studs provided you take the proper steps to ensure enough clearance and proper track tension.

I had sent a little Christmas greeting to some of my friends using an old sled pic of myself playing on a Larven back in the 70’s. I was a little surprised at some of the comments I got on it so I thought I would post it here for you. The Swedish made machine was powered by a little 185cc Husqvarna engine and was simply a motorized track. The bars are fixed and the skis attached to your feet. I didn’t get to read the owners manual but I am pretty sure there is a chapter in there on running over your own ski tips! Cowboy Jim had the best comment of all… ‘by the look on your face you don’t need a lot of horsepower to have fun’. And you know something, he is 100% correct! The older I get the more I realize how much fun is found in the simple basics in direct contrast to all the hi-cost technology and performance. That said, my favorite Christmas present this year is a shiny pair of new snowshoes… go figure.

Happy New Year 😉   cheers cr

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Posted @ 11:36 am in Travel and Events,Yamaha People and Communication   

December 10, 2010

2011 Season Starts

We are off to a good start of the riding season in southern Ontario. The OFSC announced today that a new pilot program will see selected trails opening this weekend to their permit holders. In the past, the federation had to wait until the trail system was ready to open completely. What a great opportunity for those of us who live close to the selected areas, to ride on groomed trails legally, two weeks before Christmas!!! merry ho ho indeed! If you plan to take advantage of this please read the attached press release for restrictions and links to open trails. Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs

Jon has his gear bag stuffed and ready to hit the airport on Saturday. There is a big gathering of the minds in a secret location to evaluate some new product features, decide on some new colors and graphics and work on our future product plans. Also next year will mark our 10th anniversary. What anniversary you ask?

Ten years since the launch of the RX-1 and ten years of performance 4-stroke snowmobiles from Yamaha. And most of them are still running I might add! 😉 I am sure Jon and the boys will be kicking around some ideas on how to commemorate the occasion.  Maybe we should pull an Oprah and give everyone in the audience a new Vector… hmmm I doubt Pete will sign off on that one.

I will be getting a second taste of winter next week when I head for the airport and Winnipeg (or Winterpeg as some refer to it.) I’ll be in the province for a couple of days to visit some key dealers and introduce a new member on our team, ‘Ace’ Oyama to their market. Wondering right now if I should bring a helmet.

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Posted @ 11:58 am in Opinions and Insights   

December 2, 2010

Carbides and Shocks

I’ve been getting a few inquires and requests for info which I thought I would add to this post. First: carbides on the new 2011 Apex ski. From all accounts the traditional runners from our old ski will mount up fine, a small amount of bending may be required. The SnowTrackers bolt right up no problem which is good because there is no way you’ll be bending that flat host bar with the carbide wafer! Hey Sled Freak you can pull down your Kijiji ad for the ‘Snowtrackers almost new, only used by a little old lady on Sundays’ and bolt them to your XTX 😉

The other popular ‘odd-ball’ is the Cobra-head which appears can be made to fit but as far as we know they were going to put some additional curve in the bar and set-up as a new part number.

Fox Shocks: we have put together a new shock kit for the Apex consisting of two RX ‘SE’ spec front shocks and an air pump, suggested retail is 559.95 which ain’t bad for FOX! On the same subject due to popular demand we are making the FOX mega-Float rear Monoshock that comes standard on the 2011 Apex SE available as a kit that retrofits all previous mono skids. Properly aired up this puppy will breath new life into any of our older models offering a very wide range of spring adjustment, plush to bottomless.

Another one I was asked what cover will fit a Nytro with the accessory tall windshield. I am told our deluxe cover just fits but gets ‘er done. With all the talk about studding, I have had a couple of inquires about the pre-studded Camoplast offerings. We have them for the 144 and 121 but the 128 is still in the works. I hope to have the chance to mount one on my sled this year, if so I’ll write up a review from the hip.

In closing, I know I am preaching to the choir but I’ll say it anyways. If you are heading out for that first ride, please take all the regular precautions and be extra wary of obstacles covered by the snow. No base = big bang! Save the testosterone for the good conditions… isn’t that right Bellymon?  😉  ride safe – ride sober – sled smart.

cheers cr

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Posted @ 4:54 pm in Accessory Stuff,Tech Talk