Dear Sarge,

I need to add something to your June “Troubleshooter” column. When I picked up my Talon, there was a scraping sound at full lock turn. I could not trace the problem for a few days until I noticed the paint had worn off the lower right front A-arm, and the paint was also worn off the inside of my passenger front wheel. What was happening was the wheel was contacting the lower A-arm at full right lock turn. Being brand new, I can’t imagine the frame or A-arm is bent. The dealer looked at it and ordered another wheel. Before I put it on, what is causing the interference, Sarge?

Eric Savage

Tullahoma, Tennessee

Private Caveman, this is another case of poor assembly and no dealer checks! The front wheels on your limited edition factory misaligned Honda Talon are set radically toe-out! Set your alignment to 1/4-inch toe-in, not out! Another case of nobody doing their job! You should have caught it before you left the dealer’s lot with your factory misaligned Honda Talon, Boot! Twenty-five for that mistake! Dismissed!

See UTV Action’s long term Honda Talon test here: HONDA TALON 1000R LONG TERM TEST – UTV Action Magazine


Dear Sarge,

My son and I are the proud owners of a 2012 Polaris Ranger 800. Over the years it has taken us on some great adventures. We ran the OEM tires until they were starting to check and dry rot, and they had a lot of plugs in them. They still held air even though they were cracked and nearly bald in spots. We decided to finally have the dealer install new tires. Well, he called us up and said we would need new wheels as well. He said the rubber tires had rusted to the steel wheels, and he could not get the tires off the wheels! He stated he could cut the tires off the wheels, but most likely the wheels would never hold air with new tires installed without tubes! Sarge, we may be from the back country, but we had never heard of rubber rusting! Can you please explain what our dealer meant by “rubber rusting”?

Jonas & Clyde Anderson

Campbellsville, Kentucky

Private Dander, your dealer was partially right on one thing—the tires would have to be cut off the wheels, and the wheels would most likely be useless to hold air with a tubeless tire. On the other point of the tire rusting to the rim, he got it 180 degrees wrong! Rubber does not rust, Boot! The stamped steel rim rusted to the tire! See, Boot, rubber is porous, therefore when the stamped steel rim started to rust internally (because any punctures were not plugged immediately and water got inside), as it expanded, the rust entered the pores of the rubber. This action effectively “welded” the rubber to the rim, making removal of the tire nearly impossible with conventional tire-removing equipment. There is no fix or sealant that will restore the rim’s bead surface to hold air. The wheels need to be replaced, because you waited too long to replace the 9-year-old, bald, weather-checked, dry-rotted tires. That, Boot, is too many adjectives and the wrong type to describe a Zooter tire! I would hope your dealer offered you an upgrade to aluminum wheels and a mounted tire package. The only long-term problem with aluminum wheels is that every few years the wheels may develop a bead leak because the aluminum oxidizes, and you get a film of white powder between the tire’s bead and the rim. A quick de-beading and a coat of tech bead sealant will restore the airtight seal for a few more years. Your PT, Boots, is to manually remove the old tires from the rims and see for yourself the damage a little water can cause. Dismissed!


Dear Sarge,

I have a 2014 CFMoto UForce 800. It is now 7 years old, and I am on my third Motobatt AGM battery! I always was told the AGM-style batteries were better than a conventional battery. I always keep it on a Battery Tender Plus charger when not in use. If I take the battery off the charger for more than a day, the battery will not turn the engine over. Like this, I can’t even go camping unless I take a jump box with me. My mechanic is not an authorized dealer, and CFMoto will not even talk to him. Can you provide some troubleshooting information that we can not get from CFMoto?

Doug Nelson

Maloy, Iowa

Private Knucklehead, I don’t think your problem is a battery drain. I think you are killing the batteries by boiling them! A properly maintained AGM battery can last a long time. If you keep a properly operating Battery Tender charger on a battery, when the voltage reaches about 14.5 volts, the charger should go into Float mode. I suspect your charger is not going into Float mode and is continuously charging at the 1.25 AHR rate, thus you are cooking your battery. Although, I don’t see a need for a maintainer charger if you actually ride your Zooter, Boot! If you just have to have a charger, all you really need is the Battery Tender Jr. On the off chance you actually have a battery drain and that is why you installed the Battery Tender charger, I would install an amp meter on the battery to measure battery drain with the switch off. Anything more than about 10 mA, and you should start pulling fuses to see which circuit is causing the draw. One other thing to look at, Boot, is the winch contactor. If water gets inside it, they have been known to cause a battery draw. Personally, I prefer a winch to be on a separate switchable circuit to remove it from the battery unless I want it! Count off 25 for each battery you “cooked”! Dismissed!

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