In our latest edition of “My First Sled”, we profile Kelly’s 1980 Ski-Doo Citation 4500. As the snowmobile industry entered the 1980s, sled designs improved by a significant degree. The tight financial times of the mid-70s were out of the way and sled makers (what few that were left) could devote R&D resources to chassis refinement. Snowmobiles took on a sleeker look and ride quality was dramatically improved.

Ski-Doo launched a completely revamped line for the 1980 model year and a big part of that roll-out was an all-new mid-range series called Citation. Positioned between the Elan and Everest models, the Citation was replacing the venerable Olympique and the previous version of the Citation. The earlier Citation was a small chassis model with a 300cc engine marketed in 1978 and 1979. The Olympique had been a fixture in the Ski-Doo line-up since 1965.

The Citation received an all new chassis with an aluminum tunnel and steel front section, along with an all rubber track.

Citation was available in three different versions:

  • 3500- Equipped with a 268cc engine with a single carb and a 106” track.
  • 4500- Featured a 368cc engine with a single carb and a 114” track.
  • SS- Also used the 368cc engine, but with twin carbs and 106” track.

The Citation models were designed as affordable sleds with great fuel economy that still provided snappy performance. Bombardier hit every mark in this undertaking. The fuel economy of the Citations was in the early to mid-20s per US gallon. We could not find 1980 pricing for the Citations, but we estimate that it was in the $1725 (US)/$2050 (Canada) range.

Qualities of the Citation Series included:

  • Decent power to weight ratio
  • Low centre of gravity, wider stance
  • Excellent fuel economy
  • Sleek new good looks
  • Decent suspension for its time
  • Solid reliability and workmanship

As was the practice at the time, Bombardier also produced a Moto-Ski counterpart for every Ski-Doo model. The Moto-Ski version of the Citation was called Mirage. Here were Moto-Ski versions:

  • Mirage Special = Citation SS
  • Mirage I= Citation 3500
  • Mirage II= Citation 4500

The Citation remained relatively unchanged through the mid-80s. The Citation model was phased out after the 1989 season.

Specifications For The 1980 Ski-Doo Citation 4500

  • Engine- Rotax two-stroke, piston-port, two-cylinder 368.3cc
  • Cooling: Fan-cooled
  • Bore/Stroke: 62mm X 61mm
  • Carburetor: Single Mikuni VM 43-229
  • Ignition: Breaker point
  • Spark plug: Bosch W275 T2 (W3C)
  • Lubrication: Oil injection
  • Horsepower: 34
  • Top speed: 58 mph
  • Fuel mileage: 23.5 US mpg
  • Overall length: 103.5”
  • Overall width: 36.5”
  • Overall height: 38.75”
  • Ski stance (centre to centre): 32.25”
  • Track: 15” width, 114” length
  • Front Suspension: Leaf springs with shocks
  • Rear Suspension: Torque Reaction slide rail
  • Dry Weight: 353 lbs (manual start), 380 lbs (electric start)
  • Brake type: Disc
  • Fuel capacity: 6.25 Imp. Gallons/7.8 US gallons/28.4 litres
  • Injector oil capacity: 48 Imp. oz/26 US oz/1.36L
  • Oil Type: Bombardier 50:1

When you think about snowmobile maintenance tasks, the track may not be something that is considered very often. They may be built tough, but the track is one of the most expensive wear items on a snowmobile. With a bit of periodic attention, your track can last the life of your sled. Here are 6 tips that can prolong track life.

Snowmobile Track

photo credit: ski-doo.com

Keep It Elevated- Always

Most all seasoned snowmobilers prop their track off of the ground after every ride. The reason for this is to keep the track from freezing to the ground. During long-term, off-season storage, the track should be elevated to keep moisture from forming under track which can promote degradation and rotting over time.

There are numerous aftermarket snowmobile lifts that are very easy on your back.

Check for Missing or Damaged Track Clips

Track clips are the steel inserts on a snowmobile track that mate with the drive sprockets. Without these metal clips, the drive cogs can tear the rubber track and do irreparable damage. Check the condition of these clips on a frequent basis and have any loose or damaged clips repaired immediately.

Remove Tension During Storage

Another good off-season practice is to back-off some tension on the track. The logic behind this is that relieving some track tension can prevent tiny splits in the rubber. Tie a note to your handlebars as a reminder to restore the correct tension before venturing off on your first ride of the next season.

Check Tension In-Season

It is also a great idea to periodically check tension during the season. A track that is too loose or too tight can lead to expensive damage. Consult your owners’ manual for the correct track tension.

Check Slider Wear

While sliders technically aren’t part of the track, if they are worn down, the track will eventually bear the brunt of the damage. Replaceable slide rail surfaces provide a buffer between the track and the suspension slide rails. When the plastic wear strips become worn down beyond the proper tolerances, damage can start to occur on the clips, slide rails and the track itself. Slider inserts are inexpensive, so keep an eye on them and replace when they have worn down to the tolerance as suggested by the sled manufacturer.

Condition The Track During Off-Season Storage

Applying silicone spray to the inner and outer surfaces of the track before storage keeps the rubber from drying out over time. A supple track inhibits cracks from forming in the rubber and is more pliable. Arguably, this can help the track stay in “like new” condition for a longer period.

Cars and trucks tend not to be very happy when exceptionally cold whether hits. But major mechanical problems can arise that go far further than poor starting and dead batteries. Some vehicles are very prone to catastrophic power steering freeze-up. When this occurs, the power steering fluid freezes and congeals in the power steering pump and cooler. Upon start-up, the flow of fluid is blocked and the resulting pressure ruptures the steering fluid pressure line and the fluid is blasted all over the ground. This headache is not only messy; it results in a very expensive repair bill. Update: Here’s  photographic evidence of the aftermath of frozen power steering fluid.

Certain vehicles seem to be more prone than others. These include several Dodge/Chrysler cars and vans and the Ford Escape. We heard from a Ford Escape owner that had this misfortune the last two winters in a row, with $600 repair bills each time.

A Simple Preventive Solution For Frozen Power Steering Fluid

The simplest, most effective way to prevent winter power steering system failure is to switch to synthetic fluid. As temperatures dip into the -30°C range, conventional power steering fluids become all but useless. At best, they flow poorly in winter and starve the power steering pump of lubrication at start-up. That growling noise you hear after a cold start is the power steering pump running dry. At worst, the power steering oil can be completely frozen and the result can be the fiasco described above.

Our synthetic power steering fluids flow below -50°C, so even in the -40s, your steering pump receives fast oil circulation and disasters like blown power steering hoses are averted.

For vehicles that have chronic power steering issues, a journeyman mechanic has told us that he will go so far as to reroute the steering hoses to by-pass the power steering cooler. This completely eliminates the cooler as a blockage point for frozen fluid. His contention is that unless a vehicle is performing heavy towing or hauling, the power steering cooler is not needed in the Northern US or Canada. While this may be an effective fix (not that we endorse it), the conversion to synthetic power steering fluid is likely a far less expensive (and less risky) solution.

What Is The Correct Fluid For My Power Steering System?

Some vehicles require a specific power steering fluid, while others require automatic transmission fluid. For instance, some Dodge vehicles suggest an transmission fluid with the Chrysler ATF+4 specification, while some Ford vehicles suggest a fluid with the MERCON V ATF spec. Either way, we should be able to offer a world-class synthetic option for your car or truck. The exception is Honda/Acura cars. These cars require a very unique steering fluid formula that is significantly different than most other brands on the road.

AMSOIL Multi-Vehicle Synthetic Power Steering FluidFor vehicles that require a dedicated power steering fluid, we highly recommend AMSOIL Synthetic Multi-Vehicle Power Steering Fluid. This product meets the requirements for all but a handful of makes on the road. This product has a cold pour point of -51°C (-60°F), so it pumps easily during exceptionally cold starts.

For vehicles that require an automatic transmission fluid, we suggest our finest AMSOIL Signature Series Synthetic Multi-Vehicle ATF. It also meets a multitude of ATF specifications AMSOIL Synthetic Multi-Vehicle ATFand it pours down to -53°C (-63°F). Minus 40°C outside? No problem!

Either of these oils will be compatible with the fluid that is currently in your power steering reservoir, regardless of whether it is synthetic or conventional.

If you have questions about choosing the correct fluid, see our product application tool or contact us using the form on your right. Your owner’s manual will also offer the correct specification for your vehicle.

More Benefits Of Synthetic Power Steering Fluid

Synthetic power steering fluid isn’t just beneficial in extreme cold. Conversely, it also offers consistent protection and will not thin out under extreme heat. Other benefits include:

  • Instant flow for fast steering pump protection
  • Lower friction for optimized efficiency and smooth steering
  • Long term conditioning of seals and hoses for leak prevention
  • Prevents the formation of deposits and varnish
  • Resistant to viscosity breakdown over long intervals

If you’re going through the trouble to change the fluid, it only takes a couple of bottles. Why not use an ultra-premium fluid?

How To Change Your Power Steering Fluid

Changing your power steering fluid is easy! The process requires no special tools or skills. In a previous post, we show you how to change your power steering fluid with a turkey baster! The cost is literally a couple of bottles of power steering fluid and a turkey baster.

Caution About Power Steering Stop Leak Additives in Winter

If you have minor power steering system fluid leaks, there are several “stop-leak” additives on the market that you can pour into the power steering system. While some of these products may (or may not) be effective, take special care if you live in a cold climate. Many of these products have a very, very thick viscosity (hello Lucas Oil brand), so the method of repair is basically to thicken the power steering fluid viscosity to a degree that it can’t leak out. We have seen where some of these additives are so thick that they won’t even pour out of the bottle at -10°C. So the use of this type of additive could greatly increase the risk of a power steering failure in extreme cold. A far better solution for minor power steering system leaks is to fix or replace the faulty component.

When it comes to ordering products online, there are no sweeter words than the phrase “Free Shipping”. We certainly get the warm, fuzzies from the notion.

But we see the occasional Canadian AMSOIL dealer implying that they offer free shipping on orders. Now we are not suggesting that anyone is making misleading claims, but to clear up any confusion, let it be known that there is absolutely no free shipping within Canada.

AMSOIL orders are not shipped by the AMSOIL dealer themselves. They are always shipped by AMSOIL’s certified warehouses in Toronto and Edmonton (in Canada) and 13 others located throughout the USA.

Where There Is Free Shipping On AMSOIL Orders

AMSOIL does offer free shipping within the United States on orders of $100 or greater when the customer pays full suggested retail prices for the products. Again this offer is available only to US customers (paying full suggested retail) and is not available in Canada. US wholesale customers do pay full shipping charges. While free shipping sounds great, it is not the best deal that we can offer.

How We Beat Free Shipping In Canada or USA

If a customer is ordering AMSOIL products in the $100 range, they are far better off employing our wholesale programs. The wholesale savings outweigh the shipping charges, so at the end of the day, you are saving money.

So to sum up, read the fine print as the AMSOIL free shipping is not available in Canada. If you are in the US, you are likely better offer looking at our wholesale programs than paying full suggested retail just to get the shipping covered.

Contact us with the form on your right or call us at 1-800-748-5781 and we will be happy to go through the math with you.

The official 2015 AMSOIL wholesale price list for Canada and the United States is hot off the presses and we’ve got them! If you would like to have a peek at the newest products and their factory-direct prices, we’ll be happy to email a .PDF list to you. Just drop us a note using the contact form on the lower right-hand of this page.

Fresh products for 2015 include the new AMSOIL Synthetic Dirt Bike Oil line and the Signature Series 5W-50 Synthetic Oil for Shelby Mustangs.

We can offer the complete AMSOIL collection at wholesale. If you are interested in any of our products, let us show you how it makes sense to buy at cost. We ship from the nearest of 13 warehouses located throughout Canada and the US, so your order is just a day or two away. Enjoy browsing our complete selection from the comfort of your home.

Any questions? Contact us with the form or call 1-800-748-5781.

Very few 5W-50 motor oils are suitable for the ultra-high-performance Ford Mustangs such as the Boss 302 or the Shelby GT 500 with the supercharged 5.4L or 5.8L Trinity engine. It used to be that Castrol Syntec Synthetic 5W-50 carried the Ford WSS-M2C931-B specification for the premium Mustang engines, but that changed a few years ago. Syntec 5W-50 has been reformulated and renamed Castrol Edge Synthetic 5W-50.

Why Is Castrol Edge 5W-50 Not Suitable For Shelby Mustangs?

We spoke to Castrol and they tell us that they do not offer a 5W-50 oil option for late-model Boss 302 or Shelby Mustangs. They tell us that Edge Synthetic 5W-50 does not carry the necessary Ford specification for Mustang engines. Apparently the new Edge 5W-50 formula contains increased levels of zinc and phosphorus for classic cars with flat tappet cams (as AMSOIL does with their Z-Rod series). High levels of these additives are incompatible with modern emissions sensors and could give fits to high-tech engine gadgetry. So for late-model Boss 302 or Shelby Mustangs, Castrol is no longer in the 5W-50 engine oil sweepstakes.

Castrol Is Out, Now What?

This leaves but a hand full of 5W-50 engine oils suitable for Mustangs needing a motor oil with the Ford WSS-M2C931-B or WSS-M2C931-C spec. In our last post we announced that we are now selling AMSOIL Signature Series 5W-50 Synthetic Motor Oil for Mustangs. If you are in search for the best possible 5W-50 oil for your car, you have reached your destination. AMSOIL held nothing back in the design and quality of this full-synthetic 5W-50. It meets the applicable Ford specifications as well as the latest API SN spec.

We can have a case of this Mustang 5W-50 at your door in a day or two, regardless of where you live in Canada or the United States. Best of all, we can sell this oil at dealer cost. So to sum up, you get the best oil for your Mustang, at a price that can’t be beat. Drop us a note using the form on your right or call us at 1-800-748-5781.

AMSOIL 5W-50 Synthetic Mustang OilAttention Ford Mustang owners. There is a brand new motor oil option for high-output Mustang engines. AMSOIL has released a synthetic 5W-50 oil that meets the Ford WSS-M2C931-C and WSS-M2C931-B specifications. The product is called AMSOIL 5W-50 Signature Series Synthetic Oil.

Now owners of Mustangs with supercharged 5.8 or 5.4 liter engines as well as the Boss 302 engine have a readily available, ultra-high quality engine oil option in a market where the choices are especially slim. Let’s face it, not many modern cars call for a 5W-50 motor oil, so it’s understandable that there are few 5W-50 oils with the proper Mustang specifications out there.

We can offer this AMSOIL 5W-50 Mustang oil to Canadian or US customers. The wholesale price for this high-end motor oil is very reasonable (even with shipping considered). Contact us for a quote using the contact form on your right or call us at 1-800-748-5781.

Why Does Ford Specify 5W-50 For Some Mustangs?

The modern day Mustang Shelby GT 500 and Boss 302 models put down outrageously high horsepower numbers. The 5.8L supercharged engine in the Shelby GT 500 cranks out an astonishing 114 horsepower per liter of displacement. Behold these horsepower numbers.

  • 2013-14 Shelby GT 500 5.8 Liter Supercharged (engine code Z): 662 horsepower
  • 2007-12 Shelby GT 500 5.4 Liter Supercharged (engine code S): 550 horsepower
  • 2011-15 Boss 302 5.0 Liter (engine code: U): 444 horsepower

When a supercharged engine is putting out this kind of horsepower and torque, engine parts will require “cushioning” against the extreme forces being generated. The extra viscosity of a 5W-50 is the safest way to provide ample protection against excessive wear. AMSOIL also incorporates their best synthetic base oils and anti-wear additives to achieve this end.

About AMSOIL 5W-50 Signature Series Synthetic Motor Oil

Mustang owners are in for a real treat with this new 5W-50. AMSOIL designed this oil using their incomparable Signature Series technology, so we will suggest that there likely isn’t a better motor oil for high-output Mustangs on the planet. Expect steadfast wear control and defense against extreme heat, as well as exceptional resistance to deposit formation. It is also overbuilt for long service intervals, so it can outlast your longest road trip.

Don’t Forget Your Transmission and Rear Differential

While you’re at it, why not do up your whole Mustang with AMSOIL Synthetics? We have AMSOIL Multi-Vehicle Synthetic ATF for the TR-6060 6-speed manual transmission and AMSOIL Severe Gear Synthetic 75W-90 or 75W-140 for your rear differential. Contact us for more details on the correct products for your exact model.

AMSOIL Synthetic 10W-60 Dirt Bike OilAMSOIL has released a brand new synthetic oil series designed specifically for 4-stroke dirt bikes. AMSOIL Synthetic Dirt Bike Oils are now available in 10W-40, 10W-50 and 10W-60. These motorcycle oils are designed to withstand the abuse inflicted upon dirt bikes and are suitable for everyone from world-class motocross racers to casual trail riders. These oils deliver AMSOIL’s famous synthetic protection of 4-stroke engines, gears and clutches, buttery smooth shifting and maximum clutch conservation.

Frequently Asked Questions About AMSOIL Synthetic Dirt Bike Oils

Question: AMSOIL already offers their Advanced Synthetic Motorcycle Oil 10W-40. What is different about this new Dirt Bike 10W-40 Synthetic?

The new AMSOIL Dirt Bike 10W-40 formula places more emphasis on clutch preservation. Dirt Bike clutches can be subject to tremendous abuse. Many MX riders use persistent clutch slippage to moderate traction and maintain speed through corners. Hard riding through deep mud and sand can fry a clutch in mere minutes. One of the primary goals of these products is to dissipate heat in clutches and maintain its frictional properties to prevent slippage. Maximum power output and consistent clutch-lever feedback is the result.

Question: Does the introduction of AMSOIL Dirt Bike Oil imply that their current Advanced Synthetic Motorcycle Oils are insufficient for off-road use?

Not at all. As AMSOIL was adding 10W-50 and 10W-60 Dirt Bike Oils, it only made sense to include a Dirt Bike 10W-40 so that they could offer a full suite of oils for off-road motorcycles. The current AMSOIL 10W-40 Synthetic Motorcycle Oil has been used in professional motocross competition for years with outstanding results. Marcel Irnie (who happens to be one of North America’s fastest pro road racers) has told us that he can get a full season out of a set of clutch plates using the current AMSOIL Advanced Synthetic Motorcycle 10W-40. If you know anything about AMSOIL, it’s no surprise that they are always looking for a ways to raise the bar. So the release of this Dirt Bike 10W-40 is in no way an indictment of the current Advanced Synthetic Motorcycle 10W-40 Oil or its prowess in off-road applications.

Question: Can I use AMSOIL Dirt Bike Oils in my street bike?

Absolutely. AMSOIL Dirt Bike Oils can be used in any street bike, road racer, supermoto, scooter or ATV that calls for 10W-40, 10W-50 or 10W-60 4-stroke oil. These oils meet or exceed the JASO MA, API SG, SJ, SH, SL specifications.

Question: What is drain interval for AMSOIL Synthetic Dirt Bike Oils?

AMSOIL Synthetic Dirt Bike Oils should be changed at the interval suggested by the motorcycle manufacturer.

Question: Are these Dirt Bike Oils suitable for use in two-stroke motorcycle transmissions?

Yes. These oils are designed for maximum transmission and wet-clutch protection, so they are optimum for this application.

Question: Can AMSOIL Dirt Bike Oil actually improve the performance of my motorcycle?

Yes and on a number of fronts. 1. The 100% synthetic formula reduces friction in your engine, so it can operate at peak output. 2. Shifting is improved, even under heavy loads. 3. As mentioned, this oil is designed to keep clutch plates from expanding due to heat and slipping, so power is put to the ground and not compromised due to clutch slippage.

Question: Is this the same motorcycle oil used by the Geico Honda Pro Motocross team?

Yes. AMSOIL has always had a policy of providing the same oils to their sponsored professional race teams that you and I can buy. MX superstar Eli Tomac and the rest of the Geico Honda team were instrumental in the development of this Synthetic Dirt Bike Oil formula.

Question: What container sizes are offered for AMSOIL Synthetic Dirt Bike Oils?

These oils are available in single US quarts (946 ml) or in cases of 12 US quarts.

Question: Where can I buy AMSOIL Synthetic 10W-40, 10W-50 or 10W-60 Dirt Bike Oil in Canada or the USA?

You can buy AMSOIL Synthetic Dirt Bike Oils in Canada or the United States from Oildepot.ca. We ship from 2 warehouses in Canada and 11 throughout the United States. We can sell at wholesale prices and provide knowledgeable service after the sale. Request a price list using the contact form on your upper right or call us at 1-800-748-5781.