Gator/Mule versus 4 wheeler

Discussion in 'Community Forum' started by KYHUNTER14, Jan 6, 2011.

  1. KYHUNTER14

    KYHUNTER14 10 pointer

    1,430
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    Oct 17, 2004
    Ashland, KY
    I have a 2wd Honda 4 Wheeler and I am thinking of upgrading to a Gator/Mule type ATV. My concern is that the Gators might not be as safe as 4 wheelers. I have no trouble with the 4 wheeler going up the hills on my farm, but it just looks to me like the Gators would be have a more difficult time. I also worry these are more prone to rollovers than my 4 wheeler. I am a safe driver and am not a "mudder" or "Crawler". I am looking to upgrade because the Gator type vehicles seem more handy for cutting wood, working on fences, etc. What do you guys think? Also, what are the best of the Gator/Mule type vehicles.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Buck_Nasty

    Buck_Nasty 12 pointer

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    Sep 23, 2009
    Laurel County
    My old hunting right is a 1999 Honda, 300, 2WD, automatic manual shift (no clutch but shift with foot) and I have never thought about trading up. The 300 Fourtrax is arguably the best ATV Honda ever made in the utility line. Although it doesn't have all the bells and whistles of the new ATV's and doesn't ride or steer as smoothly as the ones with independent suspensions and power steering, but it has never failed to do what I needed it to do. I just see all the ES type stuff on the newer ATV's as something else that can go wrong with time.

    As for your situation. Personally I would invest in a nice pull trailer designed for ATV use before I would drop the change on a UTV type off road vehicle. I don't know what type of hills you have on your farm, how wide or congested they are with timber, but if you could make use of a utility trailer, that would be my choice. UTV vehicles are nice, but I just can't see putting that much money into something when I have a reliable, capable ATV right now. As for the gators or mules, I've never had any dealings with them. Only Rhinos and T-Rex UTV's.

    Is your ATV a 300 Fourtrax? If so, do you want to sell it if you are dead set on trading?
     
  3. KYHUNTER14

    KYHUNTER14 10 pointer

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    Oct 17, 2004
    Ashland, KY
    350 rancher. Not dead set on selling it just yet though.
     
  4. raidergson

    raidergson 8 pointer

    609
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    Dec 10, 2010
    Garrard County
    There is nothing like a mule. We call ours the deer hearse.
     
  5. keith meador

    keith meador Got the Spotted Fever

    I have a mule. I was in the market for a 4 wheeler, and opted for the mule. Bench seat, roll bar and seat belts. Add the dump bed and I have everything I need in one vehicle. I bought a small tag along trailer so I can haul more decoys when waterfowl hunting. I use it for yardwork, hauling wood, putting ul trestands, checking cams, putting out corn, hauling dead stuff back to the house, fishing, feeding cattle, working on fences, and general
    farm work. There is no way a 4 wheeler would allow me to do all that the mule does. That said, I have my eye on a Kubota UTV. Hydostatic, deisel, and cab with heat and air. The Kubota I drove a few weeks ago seemed to be a much better machine than the mule, and the mule is a fine vehicle.
     
  6. CRFmxracer

    CRFmxracer 10 pointer

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    Sep 9, 2010
    louisville kentucky
    nothing against mules, but until you drive a ranger you have no idea what you are missing, and i believe they just came out with a diesel version too. if you get a utv for anything except groomed trails, DO NOT GET A MULE OR GATOR. they are very wide and have little ground clearance so they get stuck very often. me and my cousins have taken the ranger to hell and back, mudding, quad trails, hill climbs, and not once has it gotten stuck.....plus the mules and gators top out at like 25, rangers can do 55+
     
  7. Buck_Nasty

    Buck_Nasty 12 pointer

    4,822
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    Sep 23, 2009
    Laurel County

    Friend of mine who works at a car dealership had a Kubota traded in the other day. The previous owner had added a lot of extra stuff to it, including a heated cab. Man it was nice. Just too rich for my blood. I think so guys from Adair County or somewhere came and bought it.
     
  8. keith meador

    keith meador Got the Spotted Fever

    Agreed on getting stuck, and slow. I figured out at an early age the definition of a good driver is one that never has to prove it. For my needs, the mule or Kubota will do just fine. The terrain in my area doesn't warrant anything more. I got the mule stuck going downhill while hunting with Lab a few years back. The mud pushed up in front of the wheels, creating a barrier. After a brief episode of cussing and growling, the mule finally pulled itself out of the predicament. I guess I am getting older. Maybe not wiser, but definitely older.....
     
  9. KYHUNTER14

    KYHUNTER14 10 pointer

    1,430
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    Oct 17, 2004
    Ashland, KY
    Gator/Mule/Ranger, I have no experience with any and therefore no preference. My biggest need for my terrain would be ground clearance, then not rolling over.
     
  10. HUNTINGMAN

    HUNTINGMAN 12 pointer

    2,467
    3
    Nov 7, 2008
    Harrodsburg KY
    My cousin I hunt on has a kabota rtv. I use it sometimes while when hunting,it is a power house for sure with the diesel engine. If you get one of them don't plan on taking it into the woods unless you have some good roads, my experience has been that it is big and heavy and the suspension hasn't got alot of travel while the ground clearance is mediocre. It was ment to be a workhorse and it does that realy well,it can haul a heck of a load and has plenty of power. It is a little on the noisy side,but if someone wanted a tuff working and bullet proof utv,it would fit the bill just don't plan on taking it into the rough stuff.
     
  11. riverboss

    riverboss 12 pointer

    3,045
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    Jan 26, 2009
    northern ky
    We had a gator at work biggest piece of junk ive ever seen.
     
  12. yote hunter

    yote hunter 12 pointer

    2,273
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    Oct 30, 2004
    bullitt county
    i can go just about any place i want to on my property to pick up a deer, firewood,or anything else on my 98 honda4trax 4/4.noway i could do this in a utv.
     
  13. mrdux

    mrdux Guest

    I've had my Ranger 6X6 for almost 6 years and have put it thru stuff that a lesser machine would never get out of. It has 300 hours on it and has never given me any service issues. I change the oil and check all levels yearly and just GO! It still has the original belt!! Mine has seen gumbo mud up into the floorboards and water over the seat more than a few times. I pull a small utility custom trailer that will hold over 1000 snow goose decoys and have carried as many as 8 hunters at once to the field. Granted, mine rarely gets out of low range and rarely gets over 20mph. I looked at everything on the market when I bought mine and would not take anything out there over it for the way mine gets used.

    I had a Honda 450S before and while it was a good.reliable machine, it would never do what the Ranger will. You just have to ask yourself what you think you will need in the future and how much $$ you are willing to pay to get there.
     
  14. crosscountry

    crosscountry 6 pointer

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    Mar 17, 2010
    I have a Honda foreman rubicon and love it? I think it is a 2002 model and is truly a dependable hard working machine. there are times I enjoy using it over my Polaris ranger but not many. I looked at all the brands when buying my utv and like them all for different reasons. The Kubota is a solid machine but I didn't like the way the transmission jerked you forward when ai let off the gas or the top speed of the machine. It was well built but rode like a log truck. The Kawasaki mule was also very nice well built and the ride was much better than the Kubota. there where a couple of things I didn't like about the mule one was the top speed and the other was in the trans mule you only got four seat belts. I tried the gator to and it was nice but I really wanted a machine for work and play and one that could haul at least four people. Then I finally tried out the Polaris Ranger Crew and it was exactly what I was looking for. It seated six adults easily top speed of 48 miles an hour and had by far the best suspension of the bunch. I bought it and have enjoyed it for the last couple of years and If it came down to selling either my ranger or my foreman it would definitely be the Foreman. the ranger was best for me because of speed 6 passenger seating and ride but that may not be important to you so decide what you need and make the decision that is best for you. By the way I have always been a Honda man and if Honda had made a UTV similar to the ranger I would have bought it in a second. Saying that I have never regretted owning the Ranger.Good luck whatever you decide
     
  15. TRAILMASTER

    TRAILMASTER 8 pointer

    749
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    Feb 12, 2004
    Nelson, Co.
    Polaris Ranger xp would be just what you need. Don't get a gator or mule unless you plan on staying on flat ground.

    I have NEVER been a polaris fan until I rode in one of these. Absolute climbing machine. We had three of us in cab and one person in back and Climbed skidder roads we had no business being on. But was only way to top. We even stopped halfway up to cut a tree out of road.

    Only down side to ranger is it don't have engine breaking coming down hills.

    Good Luck!!
     
  16. GO with the ranger. I would also look at the cub cadet for the money if you are you have a pretty mild place to deal with.
     
  17. littlebuck

    littlebuck Spike

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    Nov 26, 2009
    what about the rhino ?
     
  18. NonTyp

    NonTyp 12 pointer

    3,675
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    Apr 9, 2006
    Horntown

    Money bags!!!!! That's a twenty grand machine!!! That new job must be paying well!;)
     
  19. Cornmonkey

    Cornmonkey 8 pointer

    521
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    May 17, 2009
    east ky.
    Flat ground my but, lol. I have a friend that has a blind on top of the ridge. Come on over and take a ride on the old mule, that sucker climb,s straight up, at least a 65 % or better grade scares the crap outa me but in mud or dry it has always went to some amazing places. I to do not like the 25 mph top speed but i know for a fact that sucker would almost climb a tree, lol. It is a 4x4. Look around and buy what ya want or get on an atv site in your area chat up a ride on this one or that one shop around a little, then decide. Either way have fun and enjoy what ever ya ride.
     
  20. westkybanded

    westkybanded 12 pointer

    6,755
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    Feb 23, 2004
    Murray, Kentucky, USA.

    I've seen Doug's machine do things that I thought were crazy to even try, but it never strains, just goes...


    That said, I made do for YEARS with a 1996 Honda 300 4x4 and a golf cart trailer.
     

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