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October 28, 2013

Show Down

I enjoyed the Toronto Snowmobile Show this year. It felt busy and upbeat to me, more-so than in previous years. I spent a couple of hours touring the floor with Masa and Sage Sawai, kicking tires, pointing out products, features and technologies that impact our business. It was interesting to observe their reactions. I noted some things I take for granted were eagerly viewed and others I tried to champion, were met with little exuberance.

We had a small display comprised of three rear suspension rails bolted together side by side. Two rails were off the same (used) skid-frame, the left one had production hy-fax and the right had a Dupont hyfax (impregnated with Vespel inserts). The third rail had a brand new stick of the Dupont in place. The used rails had just over 1100km of southern Ontario scratching on them and the difference between the material wear properties was blatantly obvious. The standard Hyfax showed significant wear ahead of the front idlers, with an uneven undulating pattern towards the rear. The Dupont stick showed almost no wear, remaining straight and flat along its entire length.

It was fun having this tool when trying to explain why someone would want to spend a C-note plus for a stick of plastic and a pleasure to announce it’s inclusion on the production units coming out of our Japan factory. To that point, the Japanese Dupont’s have less Vespel inserts than our accessory parts as they are quite labor intensive to produce.

The question was posed and the answer yes, we have prepared the Duponts with a T-cut specific to the SR Viper skid-frame which is common to many Arctic Cat models and AC will also be making available through their dealers. So-if you have any friends riding green that smell like burning garbage bags in the morning – we have the cure!

It was no dull surprise to read a thread on TY where a lot of Viper owners have received their accessories already. Now all they need is a sled to put them on. Good news is: a steady train of trucks are leaving TRF daily, loaded with Vipers and heading for a dealership near you. I noticed several guys are asking about the tracks on the Vipers. Ripsaw-2 / 2ply on the RTX / LTX and Cobra 1-ply / 3P on XTX SE. There is 9T extroverts on 129 / 137 – 8T extroverts on 141. The drive belt is shorter on SR compared to Apex / Vector (8DN) so you can’t interchange and I wouldn’t suggest you even consider for a spare unless its an emergency. It’ll fit but you’ll be driving around in 3rd gear so to speak…

Another question from the show… ECU calibration. The ECU is the same on Viper as it is in the 7000, horsepower output is identical. How it is put to the ground is another story. One that will be told on the snow. I’ll watch for any more scuttlebutt, ugly rumors or out and out horse-pucky and weigh-in when I can… cheers cr

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Posted @ 4:02 pm in Accessory Stuff,Yamaha Insights   

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7 Responses to “Show Down”

  1. Bob Hogg says:

    I played the 3 chimes..holy crap…better than expected.

    My race team boys asked if we could get Dupont hyfax…ah..nope! Wrong colour sled. I’m working on them! 🙂

    Nice display..was hoping to see the revamped 450..wrong show I guess.

    On the note about your “show and tell” tour…Funny…I remember on the “every dealer visit” that I took 3 Yamaha engineers on back in the 70’s….well as you described….I too wanted to show what appeared to be “in” for the day only to find them walking thru dealers back shop examining things like old John Deere trans-axles.

  2. DNR says:

    Hey cr. I ‘member when we wanted to show the engineers our ‘forest’ of accessory treats. You know, snowmobile decks and the likes. They really seemed more keen on the ‘trees,’ every nut, bolt and the way the building blocks were fabricated.
    Cool to hear of the standard Hyfax giving room to new and improved.
    cheers.

  3. Yellowknife says:

    Nice idea with the hyfax – something like that should be available in print/video/display as soon as a new product is launched to prove its effectiveness. I put a set on my XTX for this year – although it may or may not get many miles on it depending on what I’m riding this season. Jury is out waiting for that truck to arrive.

    So just to be clear on the new slides – all slides offered for the viper’s or yammi’s from japan will have less vespel inserts compared to the accessory product offered? Will you continue offering the accessory product or will it be replaced by the factory ones?

    Lakes are starting to freeze here. Hope to hit snow by end of Nov… question is with what?!?

    Cheers and thanks for the update,

    Hey YK, we have decided to replace the OE sticks with the accessory ones when the time comes. The price is better when we buy direct from the manufacturer, just one less finger in the pie so to speak. Replacement parts will have more Vespel for less cost.
    cheers
    cr

    YK

  4. Low Slung says:

    Great to hear the sleds from japan will have the new DuPont sliders.Speaking of 2014 sleds when are the units from japan landing at the dealers?(beening bugging my local for the arrival of my 2014 phazer RTX).Are they in North America or still in Japan?

    They are on the way! cheers cr

  5. Steve McCaughey says:

    You say sleds coming out of Japan will have the Vespel inserts. Does this mean Vipers (coming out of Minnesota) will or will not come with the “lesser % Vespel sliders” as standard equipment?

    Nope, Japan only. Our YMC manufactured sleds have the Vespel as OE.
    cheers cr

  6. Steve McCaughey says:

    In addition to the previous question, does this mean Viper/ ZR owners will have the choice of either full Vespel from a Yamaha Dealer or ” lesser % Vespel from an AC Dealer”. Also, will these lesser Vespel sliders be available for Apex, Vector, Phazer, etc. from Yamaha or will the $150 full Vespel remain the only alternative.

    No Steve, the deal is only Japan built Yamaha will come with the Japan sourced Vespel. Those sliders will not be imported to North America. All other applications will be covered using the fully chipped sticks made here, MSRP in Canada is 72.95 per stick. cheers cr

  7. Louie Skebo PowerModz says:

    Hi Chris, it was a pleasure meeting and chatting with you at the Toronto Snowmobile ATV and Power Sports show, I thought I would pass along some videos with your excellent explanations of the PD system and Vespel sliders.

    Perf. Damper:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1OyKnJdR4FQ

    Remember the 540 yamaha powered custom elan at the show, here it is playing in some powder:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iCQQWNrdVTo

    Vespel Sliders:

    http://youtu.be/yIwPKGhB-ho

    Yamaha/Arctic Cat relationship ie. Viper:

    http://youtu.be/sJOoj1wVdio

    All the best.

    Thanks Louie, it was a pleasure meeting you. Would love to try that hybrid VK powered beast sometimes, looks like a blast!!
    cheers cr


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