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Build your own Emergency Kit for the Trail

We all have a list of things we bring on rides. It ranges from coolers, drinks, food, tools, GPS, the list goes on. Of course, depending on what type of ride, how long, terrain, etc. you may have different requirements but there are a few things that you want to have on you at all times just in case. I learned my lesson years ago after we were stranded in the woods in the middle of winter with a dead battery, no jumper cables or cell phone reception.

Here are 6 things you don’t want to leave home without.

A Jump Pack is at the Top of the List
Jump packs are so small and compact nowadays these little jewels are a must have for your kit. This is the one we use and it’s been great. We bought it on Amazon. https://amzn.to/3bMF7lY
Believe it or not, we have started vehicles with this little guy with no effort. It has a flashlight and a port to charge your phone. In a worst case situation you could use it to start a fire by arching the terminals together.

First Aid Kit
A box of band-aids, gauze and duct tape is better than nothing at all but the bigger the kit you can fit the better. You never know when you or someone else will need help and you just might save a life. There are some really nice already put together kits like this one. https://amzn.to/2uf77Oe
Or you can just build your own. We carry one of the military first aid kits with us. Compact yet still has the necessities.

Emergency Food Supply
If s**t really hits the fan and despite your best measures, you still end up stuck in the middle of nowhere, you will want some provisions. If you can get your hands on some military MRE’s, that would be a great source. The packages are waterproof and 1 or 2 ought to do you until you can get help. Plus their pretty tasty, you may just decide you want to eat one in a non-emergency situation. A can of beans, rice, or anything you can fit in your survival box would be better than nothing. Don’t forget your P-38 canopener. I’ve had to open a can of chili before with a hammer and screwdriver…. not fun.

Emergency Blanket
I laughed at the idea of this too, but after seeing someone fall chest deep in a mudhole when it’s below freezing outside, I realized the value in having one on hand. They take up very little room and can be used for a variety of things, chiefly keeping you warm, but also as an overhead shelter, ground mat, changing out an axle in the sand, the list goes on. You can get a multi pack for less than $10. https://amzn.to/2SINKX7

Mini Air Compressor and Tire Plug Kit
If you’ve ever had a flat on the trail and had to ride home on the rim, you know how bad that can be. You end up damaging both your tire and wheel. A tire plug kit and a 12v air compressor can be the difference between getting home or not. Our go to is this one, we have had good luck with it. https://amzn.to/2Pak0At Just try to keep them out of moisture, they do not like it.

Basic Tool Kit
You know your fourwheeler or buggy and you know what might or might not break. Do you need to carry a spare wheel? Probably not… Do you need a spare ball joint if you are running 35″ bkts and ball joints are prone to break on your machine? I’d say so…

It’s a good idea to at least have a basic tool kit.
A few things we have in our kit is a small wrench and socket set with the most common sizes (not need to carry a 3/4 if there are no 3/4″ bolt heads on your machine), hammer, screwdriver, pliers, zip ties, electrical tape, spare spark plug, wire strippers, crimp connectors, Harbor Freight multimeter, flashlight, and cigarette lighter.

Again, this is a very basic kit and you can carry as much or as little as you feel comfortable with. We keep our kit dry and serviceable by storing all these items in a small waterproof pelican box.
I would rather have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. Till next time, thanks for reading, hope this helps.

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Don’t let the Mice shut you down!

Keep your 4wd electrical system protected from critters this winter.

With the cold season approaching, take extra care to avoid mice making a meal out of your wiring.

We have several customers each year call us with 4wd issues only to find out that mice have chewed a wire up.

While most of would love to ride all year long and ride often, we sometimes have to store our toys for more than a few weeks at a time. This is particularly a problem during the winter months.

Here are some steps you can take to prevent mice from sharpening their teeth on your electrical system.

– If at all possible, try and store inside and away from grass and vegetation. Seal holes in your garage that mice could get through.

– Start it up often, at least once a week.

– We’ve had good luck using Bounce dryer sheets. Just stick several here and there in places you think mice would nest. I have no science behind this but I believe it has worked for us.

– Mice love peanut butter. If you can’t seal the mice out, you can use a trap with peanut butter on it. The sticky traps work well.

Pro-Tip- Mice love to hide out under the front plastic on Yamaha 4 wheelers. There is spot under the front rack and plastic insert that is perfect for a nest. This happens often.

Please share any tips that you might have that would help folks out.

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How to Flush Your Differentials

Flushing your differentials..

If you ride in mud and water, you know that it can eventually seep inside your diff and turn the gear oil into what looks like a thick milkshake.

It’s a good idea to check the gear oil in your diffs often. If you find any signs of water or mud, you’ll want to flush it out and get clean gear oil in it as soon as possible.

To flush your diff..

You’ll need gear oil (a quality 80w 90), gallon or so of diesel fuel, a funnel with a hose or a transfer pump to add diesel and gear oil, and a drain pan.

Step 1. Pull the drain and fill plug and let the oil and water drain out. Screw the drain plug back in.

Step 2. Using a funnel with hose or a fluid pump, fill the differential with diesel fuel until it runs out of the fill hole. Then screw the fill plug back in.

Step 3. Make a lap or two around the yard not going very far or very fast, just enough to get the diesel to work around in the diff.

Step 4. Drain the diesel out into your drain pain. For really dirty diffs, you may have to repeat steps 2 and 3.

Step 5. With the drain plug and fill plug still out, using that same funnel or transfer pump, add gear oil until it starts to run out the drain hole, then replace the drain plug.

Finally, fill the differential with the appropriate amount of fluid, (usually just below the fill plug).

Pro tip.. if you are getting water in your diff every ride, take a look at the seals on your diff where the axles and driveshaft go in. They could need replaced.

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Yamaha Viking and Wolverine 4wd System Overviews

So we recently got our hands on a Viking and Wolverine and an X2. The X2 is pretty impressive I might say. Has a good feel to it and it’s got some umppgghh! I went ahead and made a drawing of the 4×4 relay locations on all three buggys while we had them. See the pictures on our Troubleshooting page here.

Also while we had the Viking, we made a new video that shows all the 4×4 components and some Troubleshooting tips on the 4×4 system on the Yamaha Viking. Video
You can subscribe to our YouTube channel here to see more How-To and Troubleshooting Videos. Subscribe

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Yamaha Rhino Won’t Start.. Changing Starter Relay/Battery Tips

Not Cool!

This is the worst Battery corrosion I’ve ever seen! This Yamaha Rhino won’t start, now we see why.
Video: Changing the Starter Relay and Terrible Corrosion

Your battery should never be this bad. One good tip is to keep the battery fully charged and dab some dielectric grease on the terminals to prevent corrosion. On average a battery should last you 3 years if you take care of it. Some go longer and some go shorter if they are abused. We’ve found the Kinetic dry cell batteries to be one of the best. Pro tip: Keep a set of jumper cables/jump pack on your machine if possible, you never know when you might need them.

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Get Ready for the Springtime!

Springtime is coming and it’s getting perfect weather to ride. If you’ve had your ATV or UTV sitting up because it’s too cold out to ride, then you’ll need to do a few things before you put it back in service.

First..  Make sure the battery is charged. If you let it sit without a trickle charger then chances are it could be dead or low on charge. (Pro Tip) When charging a battery, it is best to charge it at a low amperage 1-2 amps overnight or until fully charged.

Secondly.. Check your tire pressure and for any flat spots on your tires, you’ll know quickly if there are when you start riding. It’ll shake your teeth loose.

Third.. If you didn’t change the oil before you stored it (You should have..) then now is a good time to change the oil and filter. Also, if you didn’t put Stabil in the fuel (hopefully you did) you may want to drain the fuel and refill with fresh depending on how long it’s been sitting up.

Lastly..  When starting the engine for the first time after it’s been sitting for a while, start it and let it warm up slowly. Try not to rev it immediately once it starts up, let the oil get pumped up to the top of the engine. This is a good habit in general as it will prolong the life of your engine.