Inside Honda's Secret Museum and Motor Vehicle Archives
There are a few places in this world that are so secret they’re off limits to all but a lucky few. The Vatican archives and art collection, NASA’s science and engineering laboratories and Hondas product planning and design center all come to mind. Without divine intervention and a blessing from the Pope or the President, you’re unlikely to ever make it inside the first two.
To bring home big bucks, truckloads of hunters spend big bucks on the latest bow, custom rifle, and NASA grade optics, but despite how technology has changed hunting in the last decade, no other tool we can think of has transformed the sport more than an ATV or UTV. If there were ever vehicles made for the needs of hunters, these are it. Thanks to their ability to cross difficult terrain, it’s also possible to get much farther away from camp.
Why Gasoline Additives are Necessary with Ethanol-Blended Fuels
Change is the one constant in life. It’s also difficult, because when there is a change – whether in technology or how we do things – there are often unforeseen consequences. One change that affects everyone in power sports is the widespread use of ethanol in gasoline. How you prepare for the effects of high ethanol content gasoline in your engine can leave, or remove, a lot of change from your pocket.
Most riders are also do-it-yourselfers. We would rather take on a job ourselves, whether it’s rebuilding an engine or building a backyard shed, than turn it over to somebody else. One task that can be completely deceiving, though, is changing tires. As anyone who has ever attempted to change ATV or Side x Side tires knows, there is hardly a job that appears simpler, yet has the ability to be so completely frustrating.
I like Flo, the quirky, happy to help, insurance lady from Progressive. She delivers the message about the types of protection her company offers and it’s especially heartening to see ATVs, dirt bikes, and other power sports vehicles featured in their commercials. There is a serious message in her bubbly madness though, and that is your assets are worth protecting.
A Place So Secret Most Employees Have Never Seen It
The sun had not yet burned through the morning fog as the giant manufacturing plant slowly and silently appeared. Between the bean and corn fields of central Ohio, in a place one would expect to find farm auctions and county fairs is one of the world’s premier makers of everything from cars to aircraft. Honda’s R&D Americas had invited a lucky few for an unprecedented look inside their most secret facility and we were on the short list. There was no way we were going to miss it!
Nearly every business begins with a product designed to fill a need. RAD Manufacturing began the same way and in the early 90’s when RAD began operations there was a definite need in the ATV world for quality aftermarket performance products. Despite being out of production for a few years the hottest sport model was still the Honda TRX 250R, and although it didn’t have many weaknesses, the rear axle bearings were one of them. It wasn’t if, but rather when, you were going to blow out your bearing carrier.
Ride any machine long enough and we guarantee you’ll be replacing bearings. They’re the most critical parts in making sure your machine rolls smoothly. Considering the conditions most ATVs and UTVS are regularly put through, whether it’s sand, snow or mud, it’s amazing they last as long as they do. Despite your best care though, eventually some contaminants will creep in and you’ll be faced with a bearing replacement job. Here’s how to take it on like a boss!
South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley is about as far from the image of a stereotypical, stodgy legislator as one can get. She’s dynamic, enthused, and out there interacting with the people of her state. Not just content to send out press releases from the governor’s well-appointed office, she much prefers to get in on the action, whether it’s at the shooting range, or, when we met her, behind the wheel of a new Honda Pioneer minutes after it rolled off the line.
Each year we put in thousands of miles and countless hours riding, wrenching on, and basically living with new ATVs and Side x Sides. While there are a lot of great machines we enjoy on the trails and track, there are always a few that stand out and deserve recognition as being the best of the best. After much debate, consideration, and consternation here are the machines our staff picks as the best models of 2013.