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Understanding Trail Snowmobile Suspension Adjustments

Setting up a snowmobile's suspension is a unique procedure for every rider. Rider technique, profile and preferences all play a role in suspension adjustments. For an in-depth explanation of suspension, the factors that affect suspension and types of adjustments, listen to the "Why and How to Adjust Snowmobile Suspension" episode of the Polaris Podcast. 

Trail Performance
Two riders of the same size and skill level may want their sleds set up in a different way, so it’s important to understand that an adjustment that works for one rider may not work for another. There are numerous adjustments available to help you achieve the perfect ride, but they aren’t always necessary for everyone. Some riders may find that the factory settings are exactly what they want. Your first step should be to ride your sled to get a feel for how it handles. The following video will give you a baseline that you can build on.

To learn more about suspension adjustment techniques, watch the below videos that address suspension adjustments and common concerns that you may encounter.

Ride Comfort
The comfort of your sled on and off the trails is a unique preference for every rider. If you’re looking to improve the ride comfort of your sled, there are a few easy adjustments you can make. It’s important to understand, though, that there will be tradeoffs to every adjustment made.

The following video explains how discomfort in the handlebars, ankles and back can be dealt with through adjustments to the front IFS shocks, front track shock and rear track shock. You will also learn about common trail terms like chatter, bottom out and whoops.

Handling and Cornering
Each rider has a different preference for how their sled handles on and off the trails. Your main goal is to find the right amount of weight transfer from the front or rear of the sled. This is the first and most important factor to consider when making adjustments to improve handling. Remember, though, that there will always be tradeoffs to adjusting. Think of your sled on a teetering scale. The more we bias the weight toward one end, the more the effects on the other end are reduced. Also keep in mind that snow conditions will be a major factor in how the sled handles. 

There are many scenarios you may encounter that would justify a suspension adjustment. It’s important to understand what these scenarios are so that you can recognize them and take the appropriate steps. The following video examines some of those scenarios. You will learn about oversteering and how you can adjust the torsion spring preload, front track spring preload and IFS spring preload to compensate. The video also discusses darting and ski lift. Those handling conditions can be dealt with through adjustments to the ski alignment and the preload on the front track spring and IFS springs. 

Suspension Adjustment Points
There are numerous adjustments available to help riders customize a snowmobile to their profile and preferences. The following video covers the various terms and suspension adjustments available on Polaris snowmobiles. Watch to learn how clicks affect the dampening of the front shocks, front track shock and rear track shock. Also find more information about high-speed and low-speed adjustments, preload adjustment, the tie rod, ski spacers, limiter strap adjustment, torsion spring adjustment and handlebar settings.

For more a more detailed look at different suspension adjustments, click on the link below that applies to your model of Polaris snowmobile.

Customizing Your Suspension Setup for INDY, EVO and Voyageur
Customizing Your Suspension Setup on Matryx Trail Models
Customizing Your Suspension Setup for Switchback, SKS and XC Models
Customizing Your Suspension Setup on AXYS RMK, Pro-RMK and SKS
Customizing Your Suspension Setup for TITAN Models
Customizing Your Suspension Setup for WideTrak Models

For more information, see your authorized Polaris Dealer. To find a dealer near you, use the Dealer Locator.
For additional track maintenance and adjustment procedures, consult your Owner’s Manual.
To find diagrams and replacement part numbers, use the online parts catalog.

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