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About SnowMule

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    snowmobiling, rodeo, wreckin dirt bikes, radio, internet, IRC, nerd stuff
  1. "Slow is smooth, smooth is fast." Lots of practice. Know the machine. Thorough pre-trip (and pre-ride if allowed), know where things are, hazards, checkpoints, etc. Machine + racer wins the race; not one or the other. You take care of the sled, you need take care of yourself too. Diet/exercise. How much are you willing/able to put into it? If you're serious about going out and winning races, you have to put a LOT of time, energy, and money into the sport. More than most people realize. If you're just out there to go have fun, win a few races, push yourself, and have a good time, it's easier to have a life/family/job outside of racing.
  2. The stuff made with real babies is the best.
  3. Into the bathtub with some woolite... let it soak for a bit, swish it around, pull the plug... rinse a time or two, same process. Some gear can go into the dryer to dry out, other stuff I put on a drying rack with a fan in front of it. Works well for gear too.
  4. for the full build thread.
  5. My PW's bed height is 38".
  6. LED Tape lighting in the shop space of the big trailer, above and below the cabinets. Tape sticks into a channel of a 45° piece, clips rivet to the trim/steel, and a diffuser slides into the aluminum 45° extrusion. is where we sourced the tape lights and extrusion from. Can't find that stuff on their site. The lights in here draw about 7.5A. There's a switch at the front man-door of the trailer we usually use, but we also wired a switch in at the back by the loading door. Living quarters up front we're running little LED puck lights. Dimmer is nice - at lowest setting it's nice in the evening, and the pucks pull a little over 1A. Getting geared up in the morning, run the lights at full power, they pull about 5A.
  7. 10-foot ramp would work, but that seems excessive and unwieldy to haul around. 7.5ft Caliber Moto Ramp Pro works real well. 1200lb capacity, bi-fold to store and haul it. Long enough for most tall pickups. Wide enough to safely walk a moto/snowbike/ up into the truck. Can pull the bolts out of the middle and only use one half of the ramp, less ramp to haul around. You can pull the bolts and use the two ramps for loading ATVs if you want. One bike goes in diagonally, ramp underneath. Two bikes go in parallel, ramp between. Durable, quality ramp backed with a solid warranty from a Made-In-USA company. Not the cheapest option out there but it'll perform well for many years. Pavement princess vs. something that's built or designed for utility. I'd rather take the moto too, but sometimes I gotta haul climbing gear and equipment to the tops of mountains. A few more inches of ground clearance makes some of the access roads much easier.
  8. All of it. Helmet, eye pro (goggles or Z87-rated glasses). Carry clear lenses or safety glasses in case you're out after dark. Chest protection (not a roost guard), with shoulder pads. I add elbow pads too. Gloves. Armored shorts (hips mostly, but it makes the KTM seat a lot more tolerable for longer road distances). Knee protection. Pads vs. braces is your choice. I like the beefier knee pads vs. the cheap-shit $20/pair ones. Thor Force is what i'm wearing now. Boots - MX/Enduro or ATV boots. MX boots have a smoother sole, enduro/ATV boots usually have a deeper-lug work-boot-type sole. Basic first-aid kit in your pack, know how to use what you have (Basic FA/CPR/AED course is about $50, 2-year cert through Red Cross. Do it.) Communications - phones don't always work. I carry a PLB and two-way radio(s). Again, know how to use what you carry, and know the device's limitations. Navigation. Phone, GPS, maps/compass, trail maps, etc.
  9. Tekrider/Tekvest makes gear for big ol' corn-fed midwestern snowmobilers. I'm sure you can find something of theirs that'll fit. Crossover/Freestyle are vests i've been wearing on the moto for years. They work great, stay plenty cool, and actually provide protection.
  10. Waht ^^ said: Technology and tolerances. With sleds now, there's sensors on everything... fuel-injection, and oil-injection systems... servo-controlled power valves... all results in more and more useful power from the engine. Better suspension, lighter chassis, less rotating mass... less weight to get moving. ~160hp in a ~500lb machine...
  11. I carry a bunch of mule tape and carabiners when I ride - I've used that to pull bikes up some nasty rock scrabble and get inop sleds out of the woods. Tensile strength and "slipperiness" of mule tape means a carabiner generally works fine as a pulley.
  12. Took me a while too, paintball elbow pads are what i'm wearing now. Thin/comfortable enough to wear all day riding (snow and dirt), heavy enough to soften the blow from most tipovers/slides/tree collisions.
  13. The velcro on the legs goes all the way to the edge of the wrap Ran a stitch about 1/2" in from the edge Trim the excess around the edge, zig-zag to keep the edges down. Pick as much of the velcro out as I can. Upper- and lower-side wraps on both knees... Hockey gear works remarkably well on the sled, but doesn't fit into moto boots. Old Thor Force pads needed replacement. The cheap (red) ones I use for tiling in the house... they're terrible for riding.
  14. That shovel posted above looks complicated and more prepper-ish than useful in real-world situations. I've got a bunch of avalanche shovels... bunch of the military special ops guys used the Ortovox Kodiak for snow training, realized with the ground/hardened edge they'd be decent in the desert too. Only issue I've seen with them is some ice buildup in the hole when you've been using it in one mode (as a shovel) and move it to the other position, can be a little difficult to jam in and have the lock engage. A few knocks from the handle usually clears the ice out if that happens.
  15. I have a pair of Leatt Dual Axis knee pads... don't really care for them. Disappointed in the quality and coverage. Wore them once or twice on the sled, I think I got a ride with them on the moto, just didn't care for them. Ended up wearing hockey knee pads most of the snow season. Bought a pair of the newer Thor Force pads... overall I like them. Did need to modify the velcro so it didn't rub my legs raw, but once I fixed that they've been great.