Keep your sled from overheating when conditions are less than ideal
Snowmobile ice scratchers are not always top of mind, but not having them can cause you some serious headaches.
That ride up the mountain can be tough at times. Combating hard pack trails, ice and whoops is enough to challenge any rider, let alone your sled. A set of snowmobile ice scratchers are needed to keep your track lubricated and prevent your sled from overheating, whether in mountain terrain, zipping across a frozen lake or in subpar winter conditions. Essentially, as their name indicates, they scratch ice and hard snow and flick this ice and snow up into your track and rear suspension to cool down the heat exchangers under the tunnel. For something so simple, they really do work and are a necessary accessory for any snowmobiler.
Installation is very simple and they are available on all models of sleds. They attach to each side of your snowmobile, most attaching at the rails of your rear suspension. With so many different types of ice scratchers for snowmobiles, we’ve helped you by picking out our five favorites.
1. Editor’s Choice: Btl Designs Dura Flex Ice Scratchers Kit
These cable ice scratchers offer a flexible option compared to traditional wire scratchers. Dura Flex ice scratchers come standard with carbide tips, are preassembled and require only one-bolt to mount. These particular cable ice scratchers are universal and can easily hook up onto the rail when not being used. Plus they work with all reverse and non-reverse geared snowmobiles. Though they aren’t the most affordable option on our list, the Btl Designs Dura Flex ice scratchers tick enough boxes to earn the top spot on our list.
2. Best Budget Option: RSI Racing Snow/Ice Scratchers SS-1
These affordable options are made of billet aluminum and spring steel. Mounting hardware is included, and replacement springs are sold separately. They are sold as a pair, and work well, although snowmobilers need to push them up when not in use or when reversing to avoid bending. We speak from experience when we say this is an easy thing to forget.
3. Straightline Ice Scratcher Kit
These high quality snowmobile ice scratchers combine products from two well known companies in the industry. Straightline Performance uses custom carbide studs built by Woody’s, which make for a durable, well made product that is long lasting and can be run down at all times, or mounted to the rail if needed.
4. Fly Racing Ice Scratcher Kit
These snowmobile ice scratchers are simple and easy to install. They are made of CNC machined billet aluminum, and will work hard to keep your sled cool. An easy addition to your sled that will make a big difference!
5. Qualipieces Trail Blizzer Carbide Ice Scratchers
These snowmobile ice scratchers are made with flexible high-strength steel cable that can bend and flex to accommodate all types of riding. No need to stop and put these up when reversing! The company boasts a patented anti-loosening system, meaning bolts will always stay tight and in position.
6. Otto Ice Storm Reversible Scratchers
These snowmobile ice scratchers are made with 316 stainless steel and offer twice the spray of traditional scratchers. No need to stop and put these up when reversing since the scratchers automatically lay down while reversing! Another great feature is that once one side wears down, you can quickly and easily turn the tip around for double the life!
What do ice scratchers do on a snowmobile?
Ice scratchers are designed to keep the heat exchangers under your tunnel and hyfax slides cool while you ride. If you ride in powder, the snow takes care of this problem for you. If not, ice scratchers will help do the job for you. The idea is they will scratch the snow and throw up that cooling snow dust onto your heat exchangers and hyfax slides to keep things from overheating and causing potentially expensive problems. It is a very simple solution to a problem you don’t want to have.
Why should I use snowmobile ice scratchers?
It really does help to use ice scratchers for snowmobiles, especially when not riding in fresh snow or if you have a longer track snowmobile. If you notice your snowmobile is running hot, this could be one of the reasons. The good news is they are affordable and about as easy to install and set up as any snowmobile accessory you can think of.
Should I buy cable ice scratchers or aluminum/steel ice scratchers?
Steel or wire ice scratchers are dead cheap and super simple to use, but if you forget to move them before you back your sled up then you will likely bend or break them. A LOT of snowmobilers know this problem all too well. Cable ice scratchers, however, offer more flexibility and will likely last longer over time. You can run cables pretty much all the time and they won’t get caught or broken if you move your sled into reverse.
How easy are snowmobile ice scratchers to install?
Installation is about as simple as it gets. Most are universal and require only one bolt. The spring could be a bit tough to tuck up, but this should get easier with time.
10/22/2021: Updated product descriptions, added additional resources, added product (Otto Ice Storm Scrapers), updated product links.
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