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New Quad - Upgrade Recommendations?

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Hey guys,
So I just picked up a 2012 Canam Outlander 500 Max XT. It's used, in great condition, and has 800 miles on it. I'd like to get some ideas on what kind of upgrades I can make to it to improve performance and such. Im all ears!
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Super Moderator
2016 Outlander Max XT 650
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2,018 Posts
Get aluminum skid plates if you don't have them already and aluminum foot pegs to improve rider's handling and grip especially in corners an downhill.
 

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Premium Member
2021 Outlander 850 max XT-P
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946 Posts
Skid plates

Even though it only had 800 miles check all the fluids and air filter. Even flush the brake fluid. Remember marine grade grease is your friend. It wouldn't hurt to put dielectric grease in the electrical connectors. There is an aerosol dielectric grease that works really well, come in a can like spray paint. Makes the application much more gooder:geek:
 

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Regular Joe
2014 Maverick 1000r
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7,906 Posts
Welcome to the site

That's a Gen1 platform, FYI, despite the 2012 model year. Any parts purchases you're looking into need to be applicable to the Gen1. Sharp looking rig! I dig the max chassis bikes, me.

Unfortunately, there's not a ton of support for that machine, well, in relative terms to the Gen2, anyway. Sky used to be the limit with big ole lifts and such, but SuperATV does still have their power steering kit for it. Elka suspension gets rave reviews around here, KYB might have a Gen1 application still, I'm not sure.

I mean, I'm not sure how much you want to invest in it if you want to make it shine in the mud, you're looking at snorkels and radiator relocates and custom high clearance floorboards and then big ole tires, which you'd then need to address clutching to spin 'em, exhausts and tuners as previously mentioned, it's a lotta coin, I wouldn't spend it, just saying.
 

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2012 Canam Outlander 500 Max XT
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13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Welcome to the site

That's a Gen1 platform, FYI, despite the 2012 model year. Any parts purchases you're looking into need to be applicable to the Gen1. Sharp looking rig! I dig the max chassis bikes, me.

Unfortunately, there's not a ton of support for that machine, well, in relative terms to the Gen2, anyway. Sky used to be the limit with big ole lifts and such, but SuperATV does still have their power steering kit for it. Elka suspension gets rave reviews around here, KYB might have a Gen1 application still, I'm not sure.

I mean, I'm not sure how much you want to invest in it if you want to make it shine in the mud, you're looking at snorkels and radiator relocates and custom high clearance floorboards and then big ole tires, which you'd then need to address clutching to spin 'em, exhausts and tuners as previously mentioned, it's a lotta coin, I wouldn't spend it, just saying.

Thanks for the insight. What about performance tuning? Is that an option for this year/model? Power Commander etc?
 

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Regular Joe
2014 Maverick 1000r
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7,906 Posts
Well any of those "blinky box" tuners aren't exactly bike-specific, they simply alter the MAP/T sensor signal so the ECM alters the injectors' duty cycle. Hard to really dial those in, I don't know how calibrated your "seat of the pants" meter is. They're pricey for what you get out of them, imo.

Most of us look at clutching first. These bikes, power generation has never been an issue. Power delivery, tho, can sometimes leave a little to be desired. Look into clutch kits or maybe even full-out replacement primaries, CVTech reviews well if properly setup, as far as an "entry-level clutch" goes. Consider changing your secondary spring to compliment the changes to the primary. Done right, it'll operate like a completely different animal. Good clutching can make a bike feel like it's gained hp, when all its really doing is more effectively getting the power to the wheels.
 
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2012 Canam Outlander 500 Max XT
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well any of those "blinky box" tuners aren't exactly bike-specific, they simply alter the MAP/T sensor signal so the ECM alters the injectors' duty cycle. Hard to really dial those in, I don't know how calibrated your "seat of the pants" meter is. They're pricey for what you get out of them, imo.

Most of us look at clutching first. These bikes, power generation has never been an issue. Power delivery, tho, can sometimes leave a little to be desired. Look into clutch kits or maybe even full-out replacement primaries, CVTech reviews well if properly setup, as far as an "entry-level clutch" goes. Consider changing your secondary spring to compliment the changes to the primary. Done right, it'll operate like a completely different animal. Good clutching can make a bike feel like it's gained hp, when all its really doing is more effectively getting the power to the wheels.
Noted. So mines an automatic. Does the clutching still apply?
 

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Regular Joe
2014 Maverick 1000r
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7,906 Posts
Noted. So mines an automatic. Does the clutching still apply?
lol, all our bikes are "automatics", well except maybe the DS lineup, idk. Check out a few videos on YouTube to familiarize yourself with the sorcery going on in the belt box

Also I bought a new hmf exhaust so I was wondering if I have to get a tune after installing that so that all is operating at maximum output. Thoughts?
Hard to say, these bikes are such individual creatures when it come to A/F ratios leaving the exhaust. The Gen1 had the reputation for running pretty rich from the factory, so a better flowing exhaust might do some good without any tuner.
 

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Regular Joe
2014 Maverick 1000r
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7,906 Posts
Don't sweat it, lol

I mean, they've hung their hat on CVT technology since way way back, I don't know if they offer manual shifted ATVs, to be honest.
 

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Super Moderator
2016 Outlander Max XT 650
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Does Canam not make manual quads?
No. They don't. All their off-road offerings are CVT. I believe only Honda makes manual transmission ATVs.
 

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Registered
2012 Canam Outlander 500 Max XT
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13 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Ok, so it's apparently impossible to find a solid slip on exhaust for this year Outlander. The one that's on it now is rusty as shit. Anyone know where I can find a solid slip on and then a tuner as well, if I need one???
 

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2012 Canam Outlander 500 Max XT
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
lol, all our bikes are "automatics", well except maybe the DS lineup, idk. Check out a few videos on YouTube to familiarize yourself with the sorcery going on in the belt box



Hard to say, these bikes are such individual creatures when it come to A/F ratios leaving the exhaust. The Gen1 had the reputation for running pretty rich from the factory, so a better flowing exhaust might do some good without any tuner.
Well come to find out they sent me an exhaust that was 2013-2020, so the shit didn't fit. Any ideas on where to find a new slip-on for a 2012?
 

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Regular Joe
2014 Maverick 1000r
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7,906 Posts
they sent me an exhaust that was 2013-2020
Welcome to the site

That's a Gen1 platform, FYI, despite the 2012 model year. Any parts purchases you're looking into need to be applicable to the Gen1.
;)

You're really having trouble finding a gen1 muffler? HMF? AAEN? MBRP? Yoshi? Looney Tune? Just off the top of my head, but I'm not much into "brapping" in my old age :p
 

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Regular Joe
2014 Maverick 1000r
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7,906 Posts
08-11 is what you're looking for, max chassis fitment

Engine cc prolly isn't crucial, tbh. So 650/800, all the same as your 500 (y)
 
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