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The engine oil dipstick on my 550XP took a dump and the bottom 1/3 was missing. Apparently it's a common occurrence from the bit of reading I've done on it. Anyway I'm not gonna replace it just to have it happen again so I cut the rest of it off and ground it flat to use as a plug.
So now with no dipstick to check oil level I have some choices.
-Buy another dipstick to use as a dipstick...NOT
-Do an oil change and build a depth checker from the new full level
-ask the good people on QuadCrazy! Any one with a like year 550XP wanna measure their dipstick from the base to the end so I can make an oil level check stick?
Couple of quick points:
1. the Odyssey, or FL350R. This was 30 years ahead of it's time. Fast as greased owl crap, reliable, stupid fun. Never took off. Fast forward to the RAZR which was just replicating the FL350R. What would Honda have done with it if it took off in '85?
2. Everything about the ATC. Reliable, good power for small displacement, easy to work on, simple front to back, still running 30 years later. My son's 185s is 36 years old and outran a 400 Big Bear the other day until it ran out of gearing and the Big Bear caught it around 50 mph. I can dig a 110 out of the weeds and as long as it has a little compression, I'll make it run in 2 days for about $20. Can't do that with a Yamaha 225.
3, 1981 250R. What happens if you stick a CR250 2 stroke in a trike? Yeah, a death machine. Then by '85 the 250R had a 6 speed and would do 70 from the factory. Death Machine +2. The 250R gave birth to the trike racing circuit.
4. The ATC 70. Small, quiet and reliable. Just never took off. Gave birth to the entire small displacement chinese quad market.
5. 82 200ES - first Big Red. The BR single handedly created the UTV market as we see it today in the Ranger, Mule, etc.
6. The ENTIRE chinese quad market in front of us today came from expired Honda patents from the 80's.
7. 300 fourtrax. By far the most coveted 4x4 in the market right now, absolutely indestructible. Pick one up a couple of years old, stick massive wheels and tires on it, and you have a mud machine. Kinda like the Polaris or Can Am...but reliable. And cheap.
To be fair, Yamaha, Suzuki, Kawa, all picked their game up along the way and make good ATV's. I'll leave the Polaris/CanAm discussion for another day. While Polaris gave birth to the automatic, the reliability issues of both still exist today. While great ATV's, I don't consider them any more than specialty machines.
or debate...whichever is easier.
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