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Discussion Starter #1
HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!!! I wrote up a big article on the Hawk yesterday and got the forum error response when posting, lost write up...
 

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Looks to be working now so lets try it again. My ride areas consist of a combination of forest roads or two tracks and tight 50" 0r less trails the zig zag cross country. With the width of the Sportsman's now I gave up riding it on the narrow trails. Enter the Hawkeye, nice features for a smaller more entry level aimed quad and the irs is a huge bonus for me, I'm spoiled by it and won't do without it anymore on a ute style quad. With the Polaris incentives of the 3yr warranty and if you want the deferred payment option I decided to see if I could round one up. Called my dealer and they had just got in one, a green 4x4. I was thinking of the red 2wd as I don't have to use 4wd very often where I ride, so they went about getting a red one from another dealer and it worked out the I would be able to pick it up Fri (12/30) great I thought. I called the dealer before I was to leave to pick it up to make sure it was ready to go only to find out that when they were unloading it after picking it up from the other dealer that they rolled it due to not securing the ramps to the truck. Bent bars, scratched plastic etc. So I told them I can't take that one and they went about the search again for another red 2wd. I was thinking the incentives would most likely expire 12/31 and didn't want to miss out on the 3yr warranty this being a first year quad. Being pretty bummed and after I thought about the situation a while I came up with a scenero of offering my dealer to buy the green 4x4 if they would swap out the plastic/decals green to red and the wheels black to silver. They agreed to do that so I will in the end have a red 4x4 which is what I would have went for in the beginning if it was offered. I picked up the green one 12/31 so it appears at this point to be working out in my favor. This appears like it will be a great little quad and it's really not that small compared to other 300 class machines. I'm 6'2 and don't feel cramped at all, it's about like sitting on my Honda 400EX. More to come as things develope....
 

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awesome, i'm glad you got what you wanted. isn't it nice how things work out at times?
 

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You bet it is, at one point I wasn't sure I was going to get one after the rolled incident. I seen the rolled quad and it's not pretty for a brand new machine, nice red though lol.

I put a little over an hour today on it and right off the bat you realize this thing is geared really low. You can crawl along at a snails pace with no problem. The tires as I figured aren't that great, glad I got the 4x4 as it would only take a few inches of wet snow to get it spinning to a stop. A set of taller radials are in the near future, but it's quite comfortable to ride and that should improve even more with the taller radial tires. Throttle response is real soft, there won't be any shocking power surges to surprise anyone or get them in trouble but I did a slight mod that greatly increased it. It's still no wheelie machine but it gets with the program much quicker now. All in all right now I'm pretty happy with it and look forward to getting back on those tight trails to the north ASAP....
 

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thats awesome, the hawkeye keeps sounding better every time i hear a review on them.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks Rob.......
 

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the hawkeye sounds like a fun machine...thanks for the report and look forward to further review of the machine...wouldn't mind having one for the trail riding...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I bought the Hawkeye for the purpose of running the tighter trails that the Sportsman is to large for. Where I ride in northern Michigan there are many miles of forest roads and tighter atv/motorcyle trails so I'll get to explore deeper into the forest without having to fight with trees. The Hawk is the perfect size and setup for that, big hp and speed are not needed to cruise and explore the back country here.

I'm going to test fit the aluminum wheels off my 800 and go with a set of them if possible because they have the proper width and offset that I haven't been able to find otherwise. The tires I plan to use are the ACT/PXT's like comes on the Sportsman only in 25" instead of 26. The 22's that come stock have very little sidewall on 12" rims and not much tread depth either so anything here would be an improvment. It's a bit amazing how quiet and smooth this machine is, no noises at all from the pvt and the steering stem has some sort of rubber vibration dampner built in which is a nice feature. The engine and trans are a solid unit so there shouldn't be any belt aligment problems, shifting the trans is much easier than my 800. The belt cover is cast aluminum, shocks all have spring preload adjustments and a tool is included for adjusting them. The battery is located up front inside the rack storage compartment, there are two sealed storage compartments with the battery in the center dividing them. All in all the design team did their homework on this one, I hope this updated engineering makes it's way to the bigbores soon. Maybe for an encore they could stuff a 500EFI engine in them, that would be an awesome setup lol....
 

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the 500 EFI engine in the hawkeye would be great...i think you'll see some new machines coming out from all manufacturers with EFI....how about a predator EFI? Outlaw EFI?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I swapped out wheels/tires today off my Sportsman 800, the wheels fit fine but the 26" tires on the rear will rub the footwell/fender lip, plenty of clearance up front though. I have on order a set of 25" ACT's so hopefully they will clear ok, the 26er's look too big on it. Like a monster truck lol. Picked up the lock n ride rear box, rack extenders and a front cargo bag today so take along storage is all set. Installed a set of Oury grips to replace the rock hard stockers then had to go for a short ride, it's all good.....
 

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Discussion Starter #13
22/7/12 front and 22/10/12 rear, not much tread. They are Maxxis tires but very short for a 4x4, not much sidewall. I think they're designed to slide and make the quad harder to roll over for the newbie riders which is fine but I want to go to a taller radial which should improve the ride even more. I never really gave the radials for quads that much thought before I bought the Sportsman but since I've installed a set of I-Razors on my Predator and the difference in ride quality and traction is almost hard to believe. That sold me so the quads I spend the most time on will have them. I hope the 25's fit ok, the 26's would work with a little trimming as they only interference is at the outside fender/ heelguard lip. The rear Sportsman wheels have more offset than the stock rims, the width increased from 41.5" to 44 in the rear but stayed the same at 41.5 in front so I may just mount the 25's on the stock rims which will greatly increase the tire to fender clearence being they set in farther. There was about an inch or so of the Sportsman tire outside the fenderwell. There's plenty of room around the suspension front and rear for bigger tires.
 

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I think Holeshot ATRs would be an ideal tire for the Hawkeye... 25" diamter, radial, and light in weight, yet tough and durable.

Rob
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I thought seriously about the ATR's also, I guess I chose the ACT's because of the more aggressive tread pattern and the price was less also. It's kind of a coin toss though.....
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I got the 25" ACT's mounted up and installed, the Hawkeye's good ride is even better now, the ride quality of a radial tire is hard to beat. These tires are plenty big for this machine, it's unfortunate there aren't more size choices in radial form for these smaller tire equipped machines. There are no clearance issues in front and the rear I had only slight contact with the very outer fender/footwell lip at higher speed. I'm surprised these tires grow that much as there looks to be adequate clearance there. A 10" wide tire (vs 11") may help out. I wish the 25" ACT's were 10" instead of 11" wide but they're only offered in 26" height at 10" width which doesn't really make sense. The 25's should have been 10 wide and the 26's 11, so to anyone looking to upgrade tires go with 10" wide rears. The taller tire is noticable in the power department at higher speed but not at low speed, the clutching works very well for pulling/climbing out of a drainage ditch from a dead stop. The speedometer reads less than actual now of course, I'm not sure yet what the difference is, I would guess in the 5 to 7 mph range but I had the speedometer reading in the upper 30's on a short sprint down the road that felt much faster.
 

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Today I picked up a 2wd version. I was in the same boat with the 500 Sportsman. I wanted something smaller for tight technical trails and something my wife and elderly father can ride. I only spend about twenty minutes on it this evening before it got dark. I want to wait until daylight to get it out on the trails because its not broke in yet. I want to go a little easy on it until I get the ten hours in. It is quite comfortable for its size. I am 6'4 and about a big mac combo over 295. It seems like its going to be a capable machine. I was just surprised when my dealer said dont mess with the airbox unless I have too, because of the clips that hold it on. I started out with an 87 Suzuki LT 125 when it was new. I have owned Hondas, Yamaha brands as well. But in 91, I picked up a Trailblazer and been hooked on Polaris ever since. I just sold the TB, and it still runs like a sewing machine. I just hope I have as good luck with the Hawk, and the Sportsman as I did with the TB. The power curve on this bike takes a little getting used too. The low is so low that it almost feels like I going to hit a rev limiter until 7mph, and then it just keeps going. I wont get it out on the hill till in the morning, so I will report how the 2wd version does later.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Great, let us know what you think after a little seat time.
 

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I took it out on the mountain today. I was suprised how well this pulls. It was not a super steap hill, but it was pretty long. I did not have to use full throttle going up the hill. I did find one spot it really shines on. This thing is great when riding an off camber hill. I found two good test sites. The first one was a long off camver hill with some solid sections of rock, and loose rock mixed in. The second was off camber dirt with tree roots comming up through the ground all most all the way down. My Sportsman always either skips and spins or just slides down a little on the off camber sections. The Hawk can cross them without even missing a beat. I could hardley feel the roots as I rode over them, and it did not try and slide down the side of them either. I am using stock tires, so I figure it would even get even better with a new set. The biggest problem with the stock tires is in loamy sandy soil. I have a spot the is a small creek crossing with a 3 foot straight up bank on the other side. I have to use 4wd on my Sportsman to get up it. I had to try it with the Hawkeye. It might have made it with better tires, but when I backed down off the bank and through the creek, it got hung up in the loamy section on the other side. With a little work, I did get it to free itself, but this would have been a problem with better tires. Like I said ealier I am a good size guy, and for short rides this machine will be really fun, but on longer 60 miles or above rides I would perfer the larger Sportsman. One small thing I noticed it you need to watch the small rubber vibration dampaners on the seat. One fell out when I took the seat off, and if I would not have been paying attention it might have gotten lost. There is also a drain vent out of the front that almost touches the ground, I need to trim a little off, or reroute it. When I get more I will let everyone know.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Good write up James, I was going to get the 2wd also but the little dealer mishap change that to the 4x4 which I'm now glad I got for the sticky situations that pop up from time to time. I also seen the seat cushion experience you described, you have to be a bit careful when r&r the seat. I've found as long as I don't slide it sideways on removal or installation that the cushions stay in place.

After a lot of searching I found that the 06 Wolverine comes with 23" Maxxis radial tires, that size would be a perfect match for the Hawkeye. The problem is so far I can't find them anywhere but a dealer to order and they are very pricey, most places are over a 100 bucks a tire. Hopefully they'll become available from other sources soon at a better price.
 
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