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buckfarmer
Senior Contributor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

Personally, no doors or nets. If I need to go that fast. I'll just take the truck. I'm getting the feeling you might be missing your target audience with this group.
That's part of the reason we got dad a gator instead of a small truck. He couldn't get in and out of my Toyota. After he pried himself in he couldn't reach the door. Also couldn't get his foot off the gas and on the brake. With the gator he can just kind of plop down.
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tree fmr
Advisor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

How about ease of maintenance? And cost of recommended maintenance.
I also would vote the Kubota as all around best. JMHO
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buckfarmer
Senior Contributor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

Just looked at the new Honda. Some pretty cool features. However I had a hard time getting my legs in the "operator area".
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mike se il
Advisor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

It is obvious from comments there are 2-3 different ways of using UTV's.  Perhaps the easiest split is speed. Kawasaki Mule (an OBVIOUS choice missing from your list.  As the Mule has been around since UTV's were just an idea and has a nationwide presence it causes one to doubt the legitimacy of your choices.  Perhaps only advertisers get machines in the article?) and Kubota are slower speed machines.  The Polaris and Yamaha models are higher speed machines. This is like comparing mules and quarter horses.

 

I have a Mule 610XC.  It does what I need but does not road quickly.  If I am going very far I usually run it up on my tilt lawn mower trailer and haul it.  A friend has a Polaris ... Razor I think.  Top speed is scary.  He travels several miles between pivots and needs the better road speed.  I can drill holes in my metal box to mount things.  He can carry essential tools but that is about it. I can step up and sit down. He has to climb in his seat.

 

IMG10070_Small.jpgIMG_1650 (Small).JPG

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Jessie_Scott_SF
Veteran Contributor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

Good point, Mike. There are multiple ways to use UTVs on farms. For the evaluation, we will have an overall score with multiple scoring criteria. But we will also have specific awards (for example, best workhorse) to show what the best machine is for farmers using UTVs in certain applications. Speed will certainly be a factor depending how you use the machine.

 

As far as the list of participants go, we invited a range of manufacturers to participate in the evaluation. The list we have is those that chose to participate.

 

Thanks for sharing the photos! I like how you've adapted the UTV for your use. What all have you added?

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Jessie_Scott_SF
Veteran Contributor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

Ease of maintenance is a great idea! I'll talk to the product specialists while we are out there to see if they have the cost for recommended maintenance calculated.

 

Do you have a Kubota, tree fmr? If so, what do you like about it?

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Jessie_Scott_SF
Veteran Contributor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

"No doors or nets." I've heard that before from a few farmers. However, most machines do come with them so I was just curious about people's preferences. How do you feel about UTVs with fully enclosed cabs? Not as easy to get into, but they would be pretty nice in extreme heat or cold. Of course, you'd have to spend a little extra $$ and buy a unit with heating and cooling as well. Would it be worth it?

 

You bring up an interesting point about your dad. One thing we'll look at is how easy it is to get in and out of the vehicle. Hopefully this will shed some light on the vehicles for an older audience like your father who might have a harder time getting in and out.

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buckfarmer
Senior Contributor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

Nice canopy mike.
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Husker-J
Senior Contributor

Re: What machine will be the ultimate UTV?

I believe some States are requriring machines to be equipped with something to keep people's legs inside the machine, in the event of a tipover.   There was a rash of tipovers at a recreation area (can't remember which) where several people broke a leg a summer or two ago, because their leg came out of the passenger area for one reason or another.   The seatbelts kept the rider inside, but their leg still came out.   I think that is why machines anymore come with at least nets, doors, or at least the little half-door to keep your legs inside.

 

Come to think of it, that might be one more area to consider:  safety in the event of an accident;

For example, if one had padding in areas where the drivers head could hit, and another didn't, so the machines have brake lights, do the headlights light the trail ahead properly, are hot engine parts, and exhaust routed so they won't start a grass fire?

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mike se il
Advisor

Re: Nice canopy mike.

I looked at the canopies offered by the manufacturer and aftermarket.  They cost too much and didn't cover enough.  Mine extends beyond the roll bar in all directions. This is my second generation.  The top photo was my first attempt.  OriginalIy we threw it on and rachet strapped it down.  Then we got fancy and drilled a few holes and zip-tied it on.  That worked well for a while, but it came off while trailering it and I didn't find it until it had been ruined. The currrent version is in the bottom photo  it has 3 U-bolts in front and 2 bolts with fender washers in the back.  The middle U-bolt has a piece of steel bolted to it for my Outback S-Lite GPS antenna to mount to.

 

Jessie asked what I have added?  You've seen the clover seeder.  My first addition was a big convex mirror. To try it I bolted it to a scrap of aluminum angle and hose clamped it to the roll bar.  That worked so well I left it.

 

In the interest of safety I mounted an amber LED strobe near the top left rear side of the roll cage. It has a switch to choose between strobe or continuous to light the bed. It's wired to the tail light. I have 2 of them, but it is so bright I felt 2 would be blinding at night.

IMG11244 (text).jpg  If you look closely you'll notice there is a piece of foam backing the SMV.

It was a floor mat of some kind laying around I cut to fit so the SMV didn't vibrate and rattle against the expanded metal of the screen.

Technically the SMV is not legal. Not because it is blocked by the tank, but the use of an SMV on a UTV is questionable.  I decided I was using for farm use, could not travel over 24 MPH (I checked with my GPS), and it made me safer.

IMG11242 (Small).jpgThe hitch was aftermarket, installed by the dealer when I bought it.

Dad had a 50 gallon aluminum tank, I think off a JD plate planter, he had modified to carry  water when camping. Newer campers had bigger tanks. We use it various ways. He made the wooden cradle you see in the photo. I originally mounted it length ways in the bed but it required the tail gate be open and made hauling anything difficult.  I modified it to sit crossways which also brought the center of gravity forward. It raised it a couple inches but that didn't seem to affect stability any.  The wood has now been replaced by two aluminum square tubes that are bolted in permanently.  That lowered the tnk to the top of the box.  I can set the tank in and strap it down in a couple minutes.We use it to water new planted trees.

 

I bolted a couple eyes originally to slip in a pickup truck stake hole on the inside right side that I tarp strap a 12 volt battery in place with. I have a pump which I put in place.  We mounted a couple fire extinguishers outside the bed, threw in 50 feet of hose, put a blue light on the top and it became a fire dept unit for our July 4th celebration in 2012.  Somehow I got the job of being "tail end Charlie" in local parades.  I bought a used light bar, ratchet strap it on top, and use the battery to power it.  Folks know when they see me it is all over.

 

I have a 15 gallon sprayer that straps to the tubes.  The 12 volt battery runs it. I chose to use an extra battery instead of the electrics on the Mule because I was not sure it would carry the load and didn't want to risk being stranded in an awkward place.

 

My generator fits in the bed nicely, so if needed I can take it between locations for use.

Image1788 (Small).jpgNo, that is not the best place for the gas cans.

I think if I removed the wheels I could turn it sideways and get a small air compressor in beside it.

 

I have a windshield, but most of the time leave it off. It's nice in rain, driving under irrigators, or in the winter.  But it also causes dirt and dust to sirl up behind it in the operator's face in dry conditions.  And when it's hot the air flow is welcome.

 

I plan to remove the single tail light and put a pair of LED rubber mounted ones on the corners of the roll cage. And if I find a cheap two-way on ebay I am going to mount it permanently.

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