(EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the second in a series of articles about converting a 2015 Arctic Cat M 8000 SnoPro into a SnoWest Forums 2016 Project Cat giveaway sled. Throughout the summer and fall we will be working with SnoWest Forum members to build the perfect snowmobile … and then we will give it away to a Forum member at the end of the build.)
For those just joining in, last week we upgraded our 2015 Arctic Cat M 8000 front suspension with 2016 parts. This week we’re tackling the rear skid and will also update it with 2016 parts.
Once both front and rear suspensions are updated, we only have some clutching and gearing changes to transform the sled into a 2016 snowmobile for all intents and purposes. Where the new front end greatly improves handling and sidehilling, the rear skid will improve how the sled gets up on the snow and also improves the ride through the bumps.
Although we will still be using a 153x2.6 Power Claw track, we still have the option of upgrading it to a three-inch track. But as of right now, we’re not totally sold on the change. There are those who will insist on a three-inch track just because it’s deeper than the 2.6 … but after riding both this spring (in not-so-good snow conditions) we’re still debating what works best in all-around riding. (We’ll leave that argument up to the SnoWest Forums for discussion.)