In December of 2012 I got a call from Lonn Peterson of Thunder Products in Richmond, Minnesota. For those of you who don't know of Lonn or Thunder Products, let me just say he is just the smartest guy when it comes to building innovative products to optimize carburetor air flow and jetting for summer and winter sport vehicles. He is also a whiz at snowmobile clutching and has developed driven and drive products in that area as well. Check out his site if you are having any carburetion or clutching dilemmas.
Lonn knew I was into custom race styled hoods for vintage sleds and he said "why don't you make a custom hood for the Phazer?" His thought whizzed right by my head because I'm not really a Yamaha sled guy. I kinda lean Polaris and Ski-Doo. He said "you know that the Phazer is the industry's largest selling model of all time". I didn't, I thought it was the Indy. That increases the viability of any new product for an old sled.
I piddled with some drawings and kind of let it slide. In March I was picking up a motorcycle (my Storm) from Sam Niskanen, my favorite know-it-all mechanic friend. Sam had Phazer II outside his door which he offered to sell me. I did...now I'm getting' all cranked up about Lonn's idea.
Before I jump off the cliff, I want your ideas on this subject. Is this a worthwhile idea? Would you be tempted to customize your Phazer if the price was right? I've drawn up a concept to see if you like it or have your own ideas to guide the project.
Here are my ideas thus far. The Phazer is a pretty good looking snowmobile and I am resistant to altering its unique look. I wanted a cheap make-over kit which makes the sled look different and keeps the cost to an absolute minimum. So my thought is to build just a race styled hood attachment piece. The stock headlight would be mounted in it. This unit would simply bolt on top of the existing hood with hidden fasteners. I am still thinking about keeping the steering connected headlight but it may push the price upward and I really don't want to do that.
If this product becomes a reality I could see the selling price in the neighborhood of $250 or less. All you would have to do is bolt in the stock light and attach the whole thing with six hidden bolts to the stock hood.
Talk to me. Is this a good idea or a bad idea? Write me now at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me what you think. I will write back.
PS: If you like the look of my concept sled you should know that other than the hood piece, my sled will be mostly a paint and upholstery custom make-over. I will share what I've learned in the make-over process as I have done with the ET SnoPro and RX/Indy hoods.