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ATV Performance Modifications Have Modifications? Want to ask about a mod? Having problems with a certain mod? Ask and post here! Carbs, Exhausts, Engines, Etc...

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Old 03-11-2011, 04:08 PM
ENCORE's Avatar
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Under powered.....help needed

I have a 2002 Sportsman 400. Its been a great machine and served me very well with no complaints. Other than just maintaining it, I replaced the CV boots and brakes.

That said, I'm having problems in snow with the machine. I ice fish quite often and when running the lake in deep snow or through drifts, it boggs down significently. I end up holding it WOT and I'm lucky to keep the RPM's up on the machine or run 15 to 20mph. I run a very large lake, over 7 miles long, so its impossible to run in low range that far. I also run 5 miles of road right-of-way to get to the lake. I've heard about re-jet kits for the carbs, which may add up to 10% more horsepower. Do these really do this and would it be worth it?
Is there any other way that I can keep the RPM'S up on the quad? It just wants to bog the motor right down........

Thank you............
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Old 03-11-2011, 05:02 PM
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Sounds more like it needs a clutch kit. Running larger or heavier than stock tires?
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Old 03-12-2011, 02:29 AM
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I agree, something is causing it to bog down... Hows the compression and over condition of the engine? Are you running larger tires? With lo RPMs you not slipping your belt, but how many miles do you have on it? No offence intended, but how much do you weigh or how much weight are you attempting to haul?

A clutch kit is a good thing too, but if your engine cannot spin the tires, I'm of the opinion your issues are in the motor making power.
Something else I just thought of... how is the oil in the front and rear axles and tranny? If its been replaced with auto hypoid instead of lighter Polaris oils combined with the COLD temps this can rob big power from the motor just getting everything turning... maybe try a full fluids change with Polaris recommended lubricants.

Comparing it to my wife's 2000 Trail Boss 325. (Unknown hours or miles, no gauges) Its not so great moving thru deep snow, but at less than 15 HP it spins its tires and tacks up easily even in 3' of the white stuff... Don't get me wrong, its useless in that much snow, but he works its heart out trying...

Yours is a heavier machine with two axles and only a bit more HP. But snow shouldn't bog it down like that.

One easy thing you can do is run a couple tank fulls of SEA FOAM. Its not a cure all, but if your upper end is full of power robbing deposits sea foam will cure that!!

CW
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Running 26" Maxxis Big Horns on Crusher Black alloy rims, 1.25'' Spacers, EPI clutch kit W/spring mods, HD springs F&R, Moose front/Ricochet rear CV guards, Moose tank bag, Polaris rack extensions, Lock-N-Ride lo & hi windshields, Acerbis hand guards, CUSTOM mirrors & mounts . A 3000# Gorilla winch, W/Am-Steel blue synthetic line, running thru a winch saver and an aluminum fairleed. Thor's foot pegs and CUSTOM rear rack support frame. L&R WES seat box W/LED light & internal 12V plug. L&R Sportsman Box W/ internal 12V plug. CUSTOM front and rear mud flaps, CUSTOM dual side mounted 1.5 Gal Kolpin gas cans, Modified stock muffler with a rear exit & 800 air box lid W/UNI air filter, for better flow in & out.

Next mods: Thor fender flairs & 800 Head pipes.

CALL Thor @ www.TheATVSuperStore.com - 815-321-3888

Check out my ATV videos and please subscribe!! https://www.youtube.com/user/cwlongshot

I PROUDLY SUPPORT OUR TROOPS!!

Last edited by cwlongshot; 03-12-2011 at 02:34 AM.
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Old 03-12-2011, 03:25 AM
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Everything is stock with the machine. All fluids are Polaris. Maintainance has always been kept up, and always using Polaris parts. The motor is in great condition and although the dealer said that I didn't need it, I had them install a new belt two years ago. He said that the original belt was 80%+ but I had him install a new one anyway. Tires and wheels are stock and the tires on the rear are the original tires. I've replaced the front tires with the same tire as original.

I've got 684 hours and 3,464 miles on it. When I bought it new, it was pretty much only used for hunting, running a mile to the stand and back. Now that I'm retired and moved north, I've used it also to plow with for the last six years. ALWAYS using low range while plowing. We can also run the right-of-way on the roads now, so I use the quad to get me back and forth to the lake for ice fishing. Depending on which end of the lake I'm fishing, it can be as low as a one mile ride to get on the lake or, if I run to the opposit end of the lake, its a 13 mile ride on the road. (1-way)

As for weight, well there's probably a little there.... As an old fart, I weigh about 225#, then there's the power auger on the front of the machine and I have a box with ice fishing equipment, that's mounted on the rear rack. I'd estimate probably 300-325# total loaded.

If it were just deep fluffy snow, I don't have any problems. However, when the snow drifts and gets wind blown, that's where I have problems. So much so, that I always have a friend with his 500 HO break the trails, which he goes right through. I'm pretty positive that there's no belt slippage, as the RPM's decrease and the quad slows. What it feels like to me, is that I need another gear between low range and hi-range. The tires will spin to a point, then the quad just slows down and the RPM's drop. If it carries me to a spot that doesn't have much snow or the drifts are lower, it instantly takes right off and goes.

Although I'd just LOVE to go to the dealer and pick up an 800efi, fixed incomes and especially the economy right now isn't going to let that happen. The "little woman" certainly doesn't think its a necissity......

So...... I'm just wondering what I can do to at least improve my issues. I don't have a clue about what a clutch kit will or won't do. I don't have a clue about what re-jetting the carb will or won't do. So, I figured that I'd ask the question on a forum where there would be people that know.....

Clutch Kits.............. First, do they even make one that would work with my older (02) 400 Sportsman? Where would I even get a clutch kit, what model/brand etc.? What exactly would the clutch kit do? Would it slow down the top end speed?

Sorry about all the questions guys/gals, but I'll be honest.. I don't have a clue...

Thank you

P.S. Seafoam is used in all my equipment. Good stuff !

Last edited by ENCORE; 03-12-2011 at 03:45 AM.
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Old 03-12-2011, 04:22 AM
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Does it act up like that right from the get go? Or is it ok intially and eventually gets worse?
I've had problems in the past on various machines with the air filters from time to time. When we're playing in the light drifting snow it has at times managed to get up through the intake and then constricts the air filter. If the air is limited it doesn't matter how wide open the throttle is on it, it just won't have the power. I'd start by giving the Air box/intake a good once over.

Marty

Last edited by Muskyhunter; 03-12-2011 at 04:25 AM.
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Old 03-12-2011, 04:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muskyhunter View Post
I'd start by giving the Air box/intake a good once over.

Marty
I agree. You might see if you can fine tune the fuel air mixture on the carb, a carb rebuild kit might also be a good idea. They are cheap on ebay.
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Old 03-12-2011, 05:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muskyhunter View Post
Does it act up like that right from the get go? Or is it ok intially and eventually gets worse?
I've had problems in the past on various machines with the air filters from time to time. When we're playing in the light drifting snow it has at times managed to get up through the intake and then constricts the air filter. If the air is limited it doesn't matter how wide open the throttle is on it, it just won't have the power. I'd start by giving the Air box/intake a good once over.

Marty
The only time that it does it is when I'm traveling in crusted or semi-crusted snow. Other than that, it runs perfect. Good throttle response and it tops out very quick at over 45mph.

I was just into the air box and its clear and the filter is good. However, I will check today for any type of obstruction that may be inside the intake to eliminate any potential there.

When working here on the property, while using low range and if something doesn't move, it doesn't slow down the RPM's and it will dig itself into the dirt to the frame in nothing flat.

UPDATE............ Just went out and pulled the air intake out of the machine. Its completely clear.......

Last edited by ENCORE; 03-12-2011 at 05:54 AM. Reason: old and forgetful...
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Old 03-12-2011, 06:12 AM
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i would run the sea foam through it to clean it out good.... if you have access to a compression guage i would definately check that...few miles and the cold starts dont help....sometimes it seems like you have the same power but over time it just slowly loses juice ....once you figure it out it will be like night and day
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Old 03-12-2011, 06:28 AM
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OK,
Good clear info.

It certainly sounds as you have kept it up properly and not abused it. The weight your carrying is not the problem either. Having run the sea foam your intake runner, valves and carb are likely clean as a whistle.

Tuning the carb may net you some and a clutch kit may give you a bit more off idle. But again I don't feel your belt is slipping or is any appreciable part of your issues.

I don't think you really have as much a problem as you are reaching the limitations of a older, heavy machine and a low horse power motor. It also sounds like your machine is still full of life. If funds permit I would begin looking for a larger displacement replacement. Then sell yours. I hear you on little $$ to play with so don't look new. Just newer than yours. You should be able to get a good dollar for yours and this will offset allot of the $$ needed for the new machine.

As far as convincing momma, it sounds like this machine or "A" machine is a very large part of what you do. You pretty much NEED a machine to enjoy what you do.

CW
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Mine
2007 Polaris Sportsman 700 EFI
Running 26" Maxxis Big Horns on Crusher Black alloy rims, 1.25'' Spacers, EPI clutch kit W/spring mods, HD springs F&R, Moose front/Ricochet rear CV guards, Moose tank bag, Polaris rack extensions, Lock-N-Ride lo & hi windshields, Acerbis hand guards, CUSTOM mirrors & mounts . A 3000# Gorilla winch, W/Am-Steel blue synthetic line, running thru a winch saver and an aluminum fairleed. Thor's foot pegs and CUSTOM rear rack support frame. L&R WES seat box W/LED light & internal 12V plug. L&R Sportsman Box W/ internal 12V plug. CUSTOM front and rear mud flaps, CUSTOM dual side mounted 1.5 Gal Kolpin gas cans, Modified stock muffler with a rear exit & 800 air box lid W/UNI air filter, for better flow in & out.

Next mods: Thor fender flairs & 800 Head pipes.

CALL Thor @ www.TheATVSuperStore.com - 815-321-3888

Check out my ATV videos and please subscribe!! https://www.youtube.com/user/cwlongshot

I PROUDLY SUPPORT OUR TROOPS!!

Last edited by cwlongshot; 03-12-2011 at 06:32 AM.
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Old 03-12-2011, 08:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cwlongshot View Post
...I don't think you really have as much a problem as you are reaching the limitations of a older, heavy machine and a low horse power motor. It also sounds like your machine is still full of life.
I've always been of the opinion and, it appears that you feel the same way, I'm reaching the limitation of my 400. I have to say that its been very good to me. Other than replacing the CV boots a year ago, I've had to do nothing but regular maintainance to the machine. This thing starts no matter how cold it is outside. I've never worried once about it not starting or running properly. I don't even know if the pull start works..... never used it!

I added a Superwench 2500# wench and a Cycle Country 48" plow, and of course heated hand and thumb grips. Other than normal wear and tear, amounting to some scratches on the plastic fenders, there isn't anything wrong (which is probably why the wife says a new one isn't necessary). I don't have a clue what this machine is worth.

Thanks to everyone that answered my post !
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