PROJECT ATV: Polaris Sportsman 1000 Build
Lately we have featured some highly modified 4x4s built for racing the woods and in the mud. These are the extremes of what can be done with a big budget and the set direction for building up your machine. We want to flip the coin and mildly tune up our Polaris Sportsman 1000 4×4 and show how some simple products can improve your quad. Since we started out with one of the fastest 4×4 machines, we didn’t have to mess with engine performance. Instead, we added creature comforts, changed the tires and equipped it for long rides in the woods.
We installed a set of $89.95 utility ATV footpegs and $179.95 FlexTec handguards from Rox Speed FX. These simple and easy additions help keep your feet planted on the floorboards/pegs while riding in wet conditions. The handguards keep bushes and other debris we encounter on our rides away from our hands, and they also help your hands stay dry on those rainy days and warm during the winter. We removed the stock grips and installed a set of $10.99 Holeshot ATV grips from Torc1 Racing for a better feel and comfort. The stock grips aren’t bad, but on long rides we wanted our hands to be more comfortable. For suspension we ordered a set of Elka Stage 4 shocks to help dampen the ride over rough terrain, but they didn’t arrive in time for this article, so we will do a test on those in a future issue.
To help improve traction we installed a set of 27-inch Duro Power Grip V2 tires (27x9x14, $141.95; 27x11x14, $166.95) on the stock wheels. These tires work very well in all types of terrain—from hardpacked dirt, sand, mud and rocks. The ride is smooth on hardpacked roads, and when you get in the rough you have the traction you need. We tested different tire pressures to see how well the tires grab onto obstacles. We started out with 10 psi, then dropped them down to 8 psi and noticed a good difference. The sixply construction offers great sidewall protection, but is still flexible enough to let the tire fold over rocks or other objects on the trail.
SKIDS AND BUMPER
The stock skid plates offer decent protection against rocks and hard objects you may traverse over on a ride. We did notice that in rocks the belly skid does have some flex to it. You can find A-arm skids from Rocky Mountain ATV but not a belly skid at the moment. For added protection you can purchase bumpers from Polaris; a front bumper will cost $169.99. Our Sportsman came from the factory with a rear bumper that retails for $127.49. Polaris has a big selection of other accessories to outfit your Sportsman for that custom look. We have a center skid being prototyped right now from Vanilla Gorilla.
For extra storage we added a rear rack bag from QuadBoss that retails for $199.99. This rear bag straps onto the existing cargo rack for a secure fit. It is made out of 600-denier polyester for UV resistance and is water repellent to keep your items dry. This bag can double as a rear seat, but we find it more useful as a little extra padding if the rack hits you in the rear end when riding aggressively. QuadBoss has a big lineup of storage bags, trunks, hand mitts, nets, drink holders and also hard parts for most ATVs. Check them out at www.quad boss.com.
For this simple build we really liked how everything works great together—from the handguards and grips to the storage bag, footpegs and tires. During our testing all of the upgrades worked just how we wanted and then some. The handguards kept our hands safe from branches and other objects kicked up from other riders, and also helped with deflecting rain. The aggressive footpegs never lost grip when in extremely wet and muddy conditions, resulting in a more pleasurable ride knowing our feet will stay planted where they need to. The Duro tires grabbed every bit of traction that we needed to get us out of the most extreme situations possible. In muddy conditions the tires would dig in and pull the machine through without overly spinning, and in the rocks the wide spacing between lugs would grab and get you over the obstacle with ease. With the added storage from QuadBoss we were able to bring extra items with us, such as snacks, drinks and tools, that we may need during a ride.
DURO TIRE: 770-788-2060, www.duro tire.com
ROX SPEED FX: 218-326-1794, www.roxspeedfx.com
TORC1 RACING: 661-505-7114, www.torc1racing.com
QUADBOSS: 877-847-1558, www.quadboss.com
ELKA: 800-557-0552, www.elkasuspen sion.com
VANILLA GORILLA: 336-608-8091, www.vanillagorillaracing.com