When most people think of John Deere, it has little to do with off-road vehicles and everything to do with American agriculture. There’s more than one side to a field, however, and the company that began with old John Deere’s simple steel plow, pounded into shape from a broken saw blade, has turned into one of the world’s most recognizable brands, with products that touch on nearly every type of outdoor activity whether it’s work or recreation. Deere & Co. has always remained true to its down-on-the-farm roots, though, and one of their most successful products began as an incredibly handy utility vehicle named after a southern swamp predator.
There is very little that can stop the heavy duty, hard working UTVs of today and almost without exception, they are all terrain, all weather vehicles. The trouble is, we’re not. While we love the first frosts of fall, chilly mornings for deer hunting, and even the first snows that slowly parachute to the ground like a miniature airborne invasion, before long we’re tired of fighting the war. What starts as a pastoral, wintery marvel straight out of a Rockwell painting quickly becomes the party that went too long, with all the unbounded jubilance of a New Year’s Day hangover. It is time for some winter protection!
Anyone who has purchased a 2011 Polaris RZR 4 already knows that they’ve found a great product with a very high “FUN FACTOR”. We’ve spent a lot of time blazing down many different kinds of trails and terrain with the RZR4, and it always keeps you excited and stands up to just about anything that you can put in front of it. Accessories can make an already great vehicle even better however, and we decided it was time to add on a few toys that would benefit our RZR. The trick was we wanted to add accessories that the average person could do at home in their shop with no special tools required; just bolt on and go.
Regardless of where you go, there are Side x Sides hard at work or play. What started years ago as simple utility vehicles, such as Kawasaki’s Mule, was quickly adapted by sportsman as Polaris introduced the Ranger, and then Yamaha jumped on the sport aspect with their Rhino. Today there are models of every size and for every imaginable use. For manufacturers already in the powersports business, it made sense to introduce another product line for their dealers and customers. While other brands gobbled up sales, the question was always: when would Honda bring out a Side x Side of their own?
If you’ve got either a dirt toy or a band with an Axle in it, sooner or later you’re going to have problems. Just ask Slash and the other guys from Guns-N-Roses. Recently, when we came limping back to the shop with our Can-Am Commander, we had a dysfunctional axle of our own. Luckily for us, our axle problems were much easier to solve than those of Slash and the boys, and the only therapy needed was a little help from the guys at Gorilla Axle.