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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
General Question - 09 Sportsman Touring

I'll soon be inheriting an 2009 Sportsman 500 EFI-HO 2-seater Touring, in a maroon-red color. Already equipped with the factory steel rack extensions front and rear, and a front brush guard (PN 2876102). Has a dealer installed warn winch. It's always been serviced at the dealership, and it's only been used a few times per year...but when it has been used, it's been for long day trips. Maybe 3000-3500 miles on it total. It will need tires soon.

I'm not new to 4x4s, but haven't owned an ATV in 15+ years. I am totally new to the Polaris brand however. I've already got a well setup Jeep for 4-wheeling/expedition stuff, so for now this ATV will only be used during hunting season. It will see a variety of rocks, rough terrain, dense timber, etc at high elevation...basically stuff my Jeep can't access. If it matters, I'm fully capable of doing my own maintenance and fabricating/DIY stuff.

Now, to the questions:
  1. What are common issues/failures with this model?
  2. Would like to add a matching rear brush guard. I like PN 2878670 (11+), and hate PN 2878046. Any suggestions that fit the 08, but look like the 11+?
  3. I'd like to make it more quiet. Muffler/resonator suggestions?
  4. Skid plates - suggestions for good aluminum full coverage skids?
  5. I read these can't ford water past the steps. Something with the clutch/trans? Any mods to ford deeper water?
  6. Fluids/maintenance - what types fluids are recommended for coolant, oil, trans, diffs, etc? Is there a Factory Service Manual & Maintenance Schedule available online?
  7. Accessory websites: Already found superatv.com, atvoutfitters.net, rockymountainatvmc.com. Will need a hard rifle case, hand guards, and some other odds and ends. Any other sites I should be looking at?

Thanks in advance for the help.

Edit: oops, its a 2009, not 08.
 

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Either make the skids yourself, like I did, or get them from Ricochet. well worth it either way. You can snorkle the clutch cover so long as the seals are still good to help with fording deeper water. Dialectric grease on all the connections and you can snokle the intake you think you need too. I've been in water up to mid calf on my Hawkeye 300 without issue and no snorkles/grease yet either. Most after market exhausts tend to be louder, not quieter. but you may be able to find something. I'd build my own bumper if I were you. Matching and you're set on fit. and you can make them look exactly how you want them. The 500 has proven itself to be a rock solid plat form. Maintain it properly and it should do you solid for a long time. I suggest sticking to stock sized tires or at most a 1" bigger to prevent the need for clutching and possibly beefier (read expensive) aftermarket axles.
 

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Welcome fellow Coloradan,

I'll soon be inheriting an 2008 Sportsman 500 EFI-HO 2-seater Touring, in a maroon-red color. Already equipped with the factory steel rack extensions front and rear, and a front brush guard (PN 2876102). Has a dealer installed warn winch. It's always been serviced at the dealership, and it's only been used a few times per year...but when it has been used, it's been for long day trips. Maybe 3000-3500 miles on it total. It will need tires soon.

I'm not new to 4x4s, but haven't owned an ATV in 15+ years. I am totally new to the Polaris brand however. I've already got a well setup Jeep for 4-wheeling/expedition stuff, so for now this ATV will only be used during hunting season. It will see a variety of rocks, rough terrain, dense timber, etc at high elevation...basically stuff my Jeep can't access. If it matters, I'm fully capable of doing my own maintenance and fabricating/DIY stuff.

Now, to the questions:
  1. What are common issues/failures with this model?
    Really not many issues with this machine. It's a pretty solid unit.
  2. Would like to add a matching rear brush guard. I like PN 2878670 (11+), and hate PN 2878046. Any suggestions that fit the 08, but look like the 11+?
  3. I'd like to make it more quiet. Muffler/resonator suggestions?
    Someone makes an add on/slip on muffler, but I can't remember who it is, and haven't heard much about if they really help or not. Might search Cabellas or some other atv accessory source.
  4. Skid plates - suggestions for good aluminum full coverage skids?
    A set of Ricochet skid plates will give you the best protection you can find. A little expensive, but worth every cent here in the Rocky Mnts.
  5. I read these can't ford water past the steps. Something with the clutch/trans? Any mods to ford deeper water?
    Stock, you can easily go as deep as the top of your tires. I wouldn't go any deeper than the bottom of the seat.
  6. Fluids/maintenance - what types fluids are recommended for coolant, oil, trans, diffs, etc? Is there a Factory Service Manual & Maintenance Schedule available online?
    This is a highly debated topic here. Other than the coolant, I only put Polaris oils in my machines. I won't get into that whole discussion here.
  7. Accessory websites: Already found superatv.com, atvoutfitters.net, rockymountainatvmc.com. Will need a hard rifle case, hand guards, and some other odds and ends.
    When you get ready for tires, which I would recommend before getting out in the snow, I would suggest considering Maxxis Bighorns. By far the most popular tire in these parts, and rightly so. Nothing else really compares for the all seasons and terrain types here.
    Any other sites I should be looking at?
    You might check out COATV.com if you are interested in getting out and riding with other people around Colorado.

Thanks in advance for the help.
 

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ThorsHammer is on target. I have about 3500 miles on my 800, and most of it in the water/mud. Find your vent tubes for the tranny and diffs. That will determine how much water you can handle. Mine were routed almost to the airbox, but I have discovered some are barely higher than the floorboards. I don't know why mine were so much longer, but I'm not complaining, lol. I routinely take mine into water seat high without issues. If you want to go deeper, you'll have to snorkel it. TriangleATV.com makes a "stealth snorkel" kit that I like. I have one on order.

In addition to the dielectric grease, and routine fluid changes, I make sure I grease everything everytime it hits the water. I know people with newer machines and less miles that have already replaced ball joints, control arm bushings, etc. I have not had 1 problem with anything, and I'm pretty sure it's because of proper maintenance. I ride it hard, but I take care of it. You shouldn't have any issues with axles or cv joints unless you jack it up, go big on tires, or can't control that right thumb in the mud holes.

The only other issue it has is the location of the radiator. Because it is so low, it picks up EVERYTHING and clogs pretty easy....ESPECIALLY mud. Make sure you keep it clean. I've dealt with it, but lately I've spent considerably more time in the mud, and I'm tired of dealing with it, lol. So I've also got a rad relocate kit on order from rubberdowncustoms.ca.

I have a service manual I can try to email you.
 

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I had a '09 800 Touring and loved it. The only thing I will add that the other haven't is the radiator location makes them tough to keep clean. If your mudding and hunting in swampy areas you may have to find some way to clean your rad on your outings.

The starter bendix is a bit of a weak point. They get sticky and make a grinding sound for a second before they engage (usually after they get warmed up well). I think my 800 model was they only only that required the flywheel be removed to lube or replace.

Enjoy...they are comfy machines and work like a tank for hunting. Like riding and unstoppable couch through the bush:)
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
thanks for the tips guys!

I've had my Jeep in 40"+ deep water, and this ATV may see the same too...so I will definitely need to look closely at all the vent lines and work on snorkeling the clutch cover.

I like the Ricochet skid plates - will probably go that route. Thanks for the recommendation.

I may see if I can find someone with an 11+ w/ the PN 2878670 rear brush guard to get a good look at the dimensions....maybe I can modify/fab a bracket to fit one on this 08. I don't want to put a whole lot of effort into this machine...I've already put a crapload of effort, time, money & fab into my Jeep :).

I had noticed the Maxxis Bighorns online, they do look like a good option - I'll plan on those when the time comes, unless I can find a good deal on a used stock set on craigslist. This thing doesn't need to be fancy with big tires.

Thanks for the heads up on the mud... the ATV is currently covered in mud from a summer trip so I'll check the radiator...any issues/areas to worry about when spraying this machine off with a power washer or garden hose?

Side note - I've noticed the exhaust gets quite hot on your leg on long trips. Are there any aftermarket heat shields for this?
 

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I usually took the front screen off of mine and laid under the front of the bike to reach every part of the rad. I rigged up a 90 degree attachment for the garden hose with reduced plumbing fittings for some pressure. Time with the hose is best for cleaning the rad.

A tip that a dirtcross guy gave me was that once your rad is clean spray it down with olive oil cooking spray and it will clean up easier. A lot of those guys spray down the most of the bike.

'Super Clean' spray works pretty good for loosening up dirt packed in the rad.
 

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thanks for the tips guys!

Thanks for the heads up on the mud... the ATV is currently covered in mud from a summer trip so I'll check the radiator...any issues/areas to worry about when spraying this machine off with a power washer or garden hose?
Stay away from the cv's and cv boots with the power washer. You'll either tear them or push dirt in them. I usually wash them with a scrub brush, rinse with water hose, then power wash the rest of the bike.
 

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I have an '08 Model T 500 HO LE. After my wife got her own machine and we got our yellow lab puppy "Presley", I removed the seat and built him a seat to ride on. He's now tipping the scales at 65+lbs.


 

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It's not recommended to use a pressure washer to wash your quad. I wouldn't go stronger than a high pressure garden hose nozzle. I've seen it recommended that you park it over a running sprinkler to loosen up and wash off the undercarriage.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
08TouringLE, I like that dog box. Good idea. Might have to fab something up like that for packing an elk out.

and that ATV Silencer is the kinda thing I was looking for, but they are really proud of it. I've seen people redneck rigger a small car/truck muffler to reduce noise. Maybe I could find a stock Honda Civic muffler and fab up my own add on since the teenagers are always putting on those Folder's fart cans. Might be cheap enough to at least give it a try.

sprinkler
interesting idea.

Thanks again guys :)
 

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Kolpin makes a silencer as well but they are pretty proud of those too.
 

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Did you find a Ricochet full skid for your year touring? I was looking for one and they said they only had back to 2009 or 2010. Apparently there is a difference between the years. If you score one for your '08 give a shout out how it fits. I'd like to go that route too.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Did you find a Ricochet full skid for your year touring? I was looking for one and they said they only had back to 2009 or 2010. Apparently there is a difference between the years. If you score one for your '08 give a shout out how it fits. I'd like to go that route too.
yea, i noticed that. it only shows 2010+ on their website. but they list a 4-Piece A-Arm Guard Set for the 08+.

Had just planned to call them, but hadn't got that far yet. Good point
 

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If you can't find one, they aren't that hard to make. The A-arms are the hardest part of a skid set. The main skid is actually pretty easy.
 

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If you can't find one, they aren't that hard to make. The A-arms are the hardest part of a skid set. The main skid is actually pretty easy.
Did you make your skids out of aluminum? Any welding necessary?

I'd guess 1/8" or 3/16" thick 6061-T6 is sufficient for this application?

...might be a good excuse to buy that MIG gun I've been eyeballing...:idea:
 

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Yes, 1/8" 6061 was the best guess, I got it as scrap so I had to make due with the sizes of sheet available so welding was involved, but if you buy a whole sheet you can do it without welding, but it may make it easier to do the footwell "wings".

Here's a link to my "home made skid plates" thread in the body/visual modification section. I linked you to the page where the build actually starts.

http://www.polarisatvforums.com/for...ifications/39166-home-made-skid-plates-4.html

All in all, the hole thing could be done with a drill, a jig saw, a hammer, and some clamps. Nothing that the average home owner shouldn't already own.
 

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Someone needs to bite the bullet and make a set of skids out of the sheeting that they put on airboat hulls. Impact protection, slides through the mud... you would get it all.

Airboat Polymer | Super-Slide
 

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They have, Look in the home made skid plates thread.
 
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