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PRODUCT EVALUATION J WHEELZ Traction attachment

 
(10/1/2012)
By the staff of Dirt Wheels

q The search for added traction on your ATV comes in many forms. Some want deep-mud-penetrating lugs, and others may want to scoop the fresh-blown sands of their favorite dune areas with paddle tires. While the most extreme traction attachment is a set of snow tracks, if you are looking for something a little more tame and a lot less expensive, J Wheelz can be considered.

At $590, a set of four J Wheelz will save you a minimum of $3000 (versus snow tracks). And like tracks, they can be used in snow, sand and mud. J Wheelz are a plastic cone attachment that bolt to the outside of your stock or aftermarket wheels using a pair of supplied lug-nut adapters. Each of the four pieces weigh 7 pounds and can be mounted on 23- to 26-inch tires. Snow tracks are in the 30-to-40-pound range.

Constructed of a polypropylene polymer, J Wheelz are tough yet flexible enough to hold up to off-road abuse. The cone is filled with a piece of closed-cell polyethylene foam, which is completely waterproof. This is the same foam that some boat docks are made of.

INSTALL & GO

To attach the J Wheelz to the four corners of your ATV, all you have to do is remove two lug nuts and replace them with the supplied longer lug nut. This nut has another threaded pocket that the J Wheelz attachment bolts thread into. Once tightened in place, you slide the foam plug into the plastic cone and secure it into place with a nylon stretch cord. Further security comes via three wood screws that will hold the foam in place even if the cords come loose.

The J Wheelz are so simple to install that during one test, we even installed them on the trail. With the J Wheelz strapped to the rear rack, we rode 10 miles up a mountain to get to a snowy trail. Then, we stopped and installed the J Wheelz only using a cordless impact gun and the quick wrench that J Wheelz supplies with the product.

Before we tested the attachment in the snow, we took our equipped Grizzly 700 to our local mud pit. This area is a mix of mud, sand and lots of water. The biggest benefit of the J Wheelz in this area was their floatation quality. No, they don’t turn your quad into an amphibious machine; they give you just enough floatation to keep your front end up and your quad moving forward. The J Wheelz cones have replaceable rubber fins installed every 6 inches around the circumference. The fins are flexible enough to not break if you run on hard ground, but strong enough to provide forward motion at low rpm. When we took the same Grizzly through the mud hole without the J Wheelz attachments, it just sank.

Up in the snow, we were easily able to cross huge snow patches that the stock tires would just dig into and get stuck. As long as the trail was mostly flat, the J Wheelz-equipped Grizzly could keep moving forward through the deep snow. You could tell that the J Wheelz did want to dig into the snow more than a snow track would, but they did get us through the snow section when we encountered it.

We didn’t like the way it felt riding the J Wheelz on hard-packed trails. If you just barely scraped a berm on the side of the trail or touched a rock with one of the front tires, the quad would turn sharply toward the obstacle. Another negative we found is that with the J Wheelz installed on our Grizzly, the machine would not fit in the back of our full-sized Ford truck. Even most track-equipped quads will still fit in a pick-up truck.

CONCLUSION

The issues we had with the J Wheelz are definitely not big enough to avoid considering this product. If you ride terrain that consists of loose, nasty, muddy, grassy tundra, that is where the J Wheelz work the best. The larger footprint and added-traction fins will help your quad move through stuff we would normally avoid. For less than $600 for a set of four, the price keeps you from having to dig out from that next sticky situation. Contact J Wheelz directly by calling (605) 692-1590, or see some sample web videos on www.j-wheelz.com. q

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KAWASAKI MOTOR CORP..............12, 13

KENDA ATV-MC..................................43 

KG CLUTCH FACTORY..........................42

KYMCO USA.......................................29 

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YAMAHA MOTOR CORPORATION......9, 17
Floatation in the snow was better than just running stock tires. This winter, we will do another test to see if the J Wheelz work as well as snow tracks. J Wheelz are much more affordable at under $600 per set. Contact J Wheelz at (605) 692-1590.
 
We have always wanted to make a quad float. While the J Wheelz offer some floatation, it’s not enough to keep the quad and rider off of the dirt surface under the water. What they do is keep the tires from digging into that muck, preventing the machine from getting stuck.
 
Installation of the J Wheelz is a breeze; the supplied quick wrench attached to any cordless drill motor helps outfit each corner in under two minutes. The whole product only adds 7 pounds to each wheel.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Topic: Product Tests

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