Shiny Side Up: The Quest for the Perfect Sled

Iceland glacier snowmobiling mountains editor Mark Boncher
We all want it. From consumers to manufacturers, racers and every snowmobiler in between … we all desire that be-all, end-all, perfect sled.

As journalists and critics, we are taught to never be 100% satisfied. That can sometimes be a burden, because, if we get too caught up, it can hamper our true delight when riding. We are always listening, feeling the bars, sensing vibrations, looking for quirks and generally dissecting a sled every minute of every ride. But then you find that sled that just fits perfectly, like a 120-hp glove.

We are fortunate that we get to “try on” a lot of sleds to figure out what fits best. Consumers, on the other hand, have such a difficult, but arguably awesome, quandary. With so many sled options today, how do you find one that is the perfect sled for you? There are so many great sleds out there! After half a life as a consumer, and half a life as an editor, I now have a theory: They all fit!

Most consumers can fairly easily educate themselves in today’s information-heavy society. There’s a pretty good chance that a consumer will end up with close to the “perfect sled” for his or her scenario. The key is to really get to know your sled. Spend extra time learning to dial in the suspension yourself. Know how to quickly change your drive belt. Summerize the sled yourself. Change your own chaincase oil. Tighten and align your own track. Know where all your grease zerks are. And yes, clean the sled at least a few times a year.

I have seen it happen many times. A person buys a sled and puts the time into it, and even though it is not the most expensive sled, that person would not trade it for a nicer/newer one because the sled and driver have grown to fit together. On the other side of the coin, some folks don’t spend much time getting to know a sled at all. Instead, they are always looking for the next best thing … blind to the fact that it may be already sitting in their own garage.

Mark Boncher, Editor
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