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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys, I have a 1997 Polaris sportsman 500 and the speedometer isn't working, It snowed yesterday and I live in Ga, so this is once in a bluemoon, and I rode it yesterday and the speedo was working fine, then my sister got on it today and then she got tired of riding and I rode it and it wasn't working. So I jacked it up and took the headlight thing off and I rn it and the needle wasn't moving, could it be that it is broke or froze? And we was on ice so I was pushing it hard and trying to do a burnout, cause well once in a bluemood ice is fun, and I would slam on the brakes and play around. Do u guys have any suggestions. Also, on a sidenote, I would spin and it would lock into 4x4 without the switch pressed, is that normal, I am pretty sure it has always done it, then I have to put it in reverse to get it out or it will stay in 4x4. My dad has a 2013 Polaris sportsman 800 efi and it doesn't do that, but that is like a 17 year difference, any help guys would be very appreciated. And im probably going hog hunting and would like to have it fixed this weekend.
 

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Does the speedo light up at all and does the odometer work, if so its the hall sensor about $50 bucks. And the AWD the hub armature plates probably getting magnetized so it may kick in every once in a while it will be fine till they warp then you will have to get them replaced cheap and easy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Could it be the cable that connects to the speedometer for the speed? It got pretty cold last night and I drove it last evening and it was fine, And the light works, It quit working one time and I took it out and something come unplugged and I hooked it back up. Also it was underpowered one time and different people worked on it and my dad put $1000 into it and it still wasn't supposedly fixed, and I got it home and they lost half of my parts for it including the spark plug and I put one in it and put everything back together and it is like brand new, and I got new tires, itp mudlite xl on the front and regular mudlite on the back, it had the factory tires on it and they was bald. I don't know if that has any thing to do with it and the neutral and rev lights on the pod went out and I took it apart and something else was unplugged on a panel with like 20 wires hooked up to it. I got a winch for Christmas and hooked it up also, so the pod has probably been took off probably more than 5 times in the last 3-4 months. Is their another way to test the cable or speedo, I don't want to replace something I don't have to. The odometer was working, it has probably 3000+ hours on it. It was working fine last week.
 

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Unplug the speedo and the hall sensor plug and make sure they are firmly seated. Some dielectric grease would be a good idea as well. 95% of the time it is the hall sensor if you have no speedo. If it lights up and the odometer does not work I will bet that is the issue.

As for why it clicks into 4x4 when spinning the tires is that you are creating so much force on the shaft that goes to the front diff that it forces the hubs to lock into place without the magnets engaged. You may also want to change fluid in the hubs as well.

As for your dads, if you spin the rear wheels hard enough on the 800 by doing donuts you will likely break the Sprague cage into pieces in the front diff from the shock pressure put on the system. I was warned specifically about this when I got my XP's. I did do it and it made a huge banging noise and the front wheels would lock in and out. Wont do that again. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Ok, thanks, is my four wheeler not supposed to lock into 4x4 like that? And where is the hall sensor plug, I don't have a manual for it? Also I will tell my dad about that. Is the Hall sensor easy to replace, or do I need a shop to do it? Could it be a possibility that the cable is froze? It did look like it had a little rust on it? If I change the oil in the hubs, will it quit locking into 4x4?
 

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Its not supposed to engage in to AWD unless the switch is on. The hall sensor is a very easy fix i did mine about 10 mins, its located on the front right brake dum and runs to the speedo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Ok, thanks, I will look at it and see, but if the cable is froze or broke, the odometer or speedometer wouldn't work right? Could that be it? And how can I test the cable? Take it out and twist it? If I do change the oil in the hubs, would that completely fix it locking into 4x4, or will I have to do something else?
 

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A 97 Sportsman doesn't have a Hall sensor. The speedo is mechanical. I uses a cable that runs back to the gearcase. If it works intermittently, the cable is probably slipping out far enough to keep it from disengaging the drive mechanism. You can take it loose at the gearcase and run it with drill to see if it works.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Well, ok, I will look at it, where is it at? On the transmission? Could that be all that is wrong with it?

Edit: I looked at it and found it, I turned the cable and it moved, then I hooked it back up to the speedometer and I hooked a drill to it and I had it the wrong way, then I turned it the right way and it went to 20-30mph. So I drove it and nothing? It still says zero mph? I hooked the cable back up and everything? What do I do now?
 

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Since the speedo worked with the drill, the cable and speedo are OK. You have a problem at the drive on the gearcase #43. It lists #44 as a key and #46 is a bushing. Can't remember exactly how its configured down there but sounds like that's where your problem is.

 

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I had this on my old 94 Sportsman. It is just a piece of the speedo cable that is about 3/4" long. I had an old cable and made one with my mig welder. Cranked the heat way up and used it as a cutter. You cant use cutters. Die grinder might work but my way took 2 seconds and end was sealed
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I found them on polarispartshouse.com, but it wont let me add them to cart? Are they rare? Also is it easy to fix? And do I only need #43 ,#44 ,#46, or do I need more?
 

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You likely only need the key 44 but if you want to make sure you have it all get them all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Ok, thanks, are the parts rare? Every site says call or I cant add them to cart? If I find #44 I will just get it and if not who cares, I can determine if im going to fast anyway.
 

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Crawler ..it may be hard to find them....I have a hard time finding some things for a 02....wanted a front rack extender..nope..some times its best to call the parts places to see..never know they may have one but not listed....I think Polaris updates their fiche for them an excludes parts not available but they may have it...

Anyways when I bought my Suzuki 4x4 in 1987 a year later the cable broke on speedo....i ordered new one ..well lasted 2 years ..its been that way since...never figured why it kept breaking..

just keep the cable screwed in the drive so it keeps water out..or silicone it ....
 

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If you can find a cable out of an old snowmobile Arctic Cat or Polaris then you can make one like I did. Its the same type of cable.
 
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