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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

I am considering purchasing a leftover 2013 Brutus and would like to hear from some current owners.

The model I am looking at has the front hydraulics, but no cab. I would like to add a bucket for light snow removal, spreading gravel in driveway potholes, and moving mulch around. I will also use the power dump bed for firewood, dirt/mulch etc.

My biggest concern is the complaints I read on the loud engine. My question is... are these complaints mainly with the cab? Would like to hear some opinions from owners without the cab... Or cab removed. My father has had a diesel mule for years, and it's not all that loud to me.

My other concerns are of course the lack of power and the command lever upgrade. I'm not sure if this unit has had the upgrade, and what this will cost if I have it done by my local dealer.

As some of you may know... There is a dealer selling these units with a few miles on them for less than 10 grand. This seems like a great value for the capabilities these machine have.

Unfortunately, no dealers in my area have these in stock, so I would be buying without a test drive and relying only on the reviews I've read which is not ideal.
 

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I have a cab, it's loud, but seems better after the command lever replacement and hydrostatic drive adjustment. If yours is a holdover, it will have a warrenty, and all of the above is covered.
Make sure and spend a few hours looking over the forums. Even though I've had some problems, I still like mine.
 

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Definitely loud, but not immediate hearing damage loud.

I use the bucket and dump bed for moving split firewood, but the bucket is not ideal for snow removal, or even relocating berms.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the input. The dealer advertising these states no warranty, but offers a 3 yr ext for $950 I believe.

I guess "loud" is a very subjective term... I sure wish I could drive one and hear for myself. I drove a ranger 570 and 900 a year ago and thought they were both fairly loud at high rpm but not obnoxious.

We don't get much snow, so I figured I would try the bucket and see how it does since the price of the plow is over triple the price of bucket.

Will the bucket lift a load of gravel or is that asking too much?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
One other question... These models don't have a pto, but still have the orange throttle lever. What is this used for if there's no pto?
 

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You would use the throttle to bring up the rpms while using the bucket, it makes the bucket movement faster, but the hydrostatic drive still respond about the same.
Look in the gallery tab in the menu bar, I have photos of mine using the bucket, mower, and snowblower.
The bucket has no problem lifting gravel, and you can fill the bed and it still dumps fine.
 

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I bought one of the units from M&M, I believe they are the ones you're looking at. Mine had the command lever update done but was not adjusted properly. It looks like it had been sitting outside for some time, some of the plastic parts are faded. It had 50 hours instead of 30 or whatever they said it had, and the rear tires had more wear than what I would expect for a 50 hour machine. The guy who delivered mine said they have a lot of them. I imagine they just pick one from the lot when you buy. I still think it's an unbelievably great deal. I did not buy the warranty and so far have not needed it.
I find the bucket to be completely useless, but maybe only because I have a tractor loader. You can't do any real loader work with it because you can't see it from the driver's seat. It doesn't lift high enough to make a pile. It's good for moving stuff around but that's about it. It may be ok for moving snow, but not as good as a plow. We played with the bucket the first day and haven't ever used it since. I still have it sitting out back, maybe someday I'll find a use for it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks again for the input... Much appreciated.

I located a Brutus at a dealer 2 hours away and made the trip today. Here is my experience.

I was very excited to finally see and drive the Brutus in person. This unit had 7 miles. I gave it a quick once over, fired it up, shifted into low range, pressed on the treadle pedal, and nothing. The salesman was as dumbfounded as I was. I then gave it full throttle, and it creaped forward at a snails pace. I took off across the parking lot and it topped out at a whopping 8mph! I reluctantly tried to shift into high range, and the shifter was stuck in low... Wouldn't budge. So we drove up to the service door, pulled inside, and proceeded to explain the situation to the service crew. The "sales manager" I presume said it was Probly low on hydro fluid. He then said it was idling way too high at 1350 rpms, and when I asked him what the idle rpm should be he confidently said 800! So off to the showroom I went waiting by the fire they had burning. As I waited I pulled out my handy dandy smart phone and found the correct idle rpm from this forum... 1250 + or - 100. After 30 mins or so they pulled it around and it was idling just under 900... Needless to say it was running poorly. I Drove it across the lot again... No improvement on power or speed. Big surprise.

The salesman then told me they had another unit around back so off we went. Hmm. I wonder if they were trying to pass the pig off on me first! This unit had a bucket mounted, and showed 40 miles on the Odo. I immediately noticed a huge difference of speed and power on this Brutus. It topped out quickly in low around 15-18, and approx 27 in high range on flat pavement. I also noticed max rpm had increased from roughly 3100 to 3800 from the first unit. I was pleasantly relieved.

My biggest concern were the complaints of the loud enigine. I have to say with no cab on this unit, I did not find it overly noisy. It's not quiet by any stretch, but we were able to have a conversation at full rpm no problem. Something I can't say about the arctic cat prowler 700 we used to have.

In conclusion, after not making a deal with this dealer, I immediately called the dealer in MN and made a deal on one of their units. I am awaiting purchase agreement.

Thanks to all forum members who have helped me make my decision. I am excited to take delivery of my new Polaris Brutus! I will give an update when it arrives and share my experience.
 

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Sounds like typical Polaris techs, they don't know a thing about the diesel machines.

The stuck shifter was not a fluke, it affects all Polaris machines. If there is any pressure on the gears when you stop it will be difficult to get out of the current gear. If you put it in park on an incline you'll need a winch to get it out of park. It's another of Polaris' design fails when they eliminated the parking brake and added the park position on the shifter.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Brutus arrived today from M&M.

Was delivered from MN on a 16' open trailer, and the shipper was a great guy. It showed 4 hours and only 6 miles. A little dirty, but otherwise in great shape. Not much sign of wear, so that was a relief!

Bruce from M&M was great to deal with, and he took the time to make sure my concerns were addressed. I asked him to pick me a unit with low miles and little wear, and he also confirmed that the command lever upgrade had been done. He personally test drove my unit, and reported the top speed was 27 mph with the bucket mounted. This was acceptable to me, since I planned to tweak the command lever adjustments myself anyway. Everything went smooth with the purchase, and it was delivered within a week from making the deal. They even took my personal check.

When I first drove the unit, it seemed a little sluggish compared to the one I test drove 2 weeks earlier, and the top speed for me with bucket mounted, half fuel, and my 160 lb self was 25mph on flat pavement after a 3-400 yard run. So a little slower than Bruce had claimed, but not enough difference to nit pick.

Overall I am very happy with the purchase, and would highly recommend Bruce and M&M.

I had a chance today to clear a couple inches of snow from my driveway with the bucket, and was pretty pleased with the results. With no cab, I was able to see the bucket on the ground by leaning my head outside just a bit, so for me it wasn't a big issue. I could definitely see this being a problem with the cab.

I also took off the command lever cover to ensure it had been upgraded, and it does have the jam nut on the HP spring so I assume it's the newer model. Have the adjustment procedures been posted here? I wasn't able to find them. If not, I will play with the HP spring bolt 2mrw and see what happens.

Thanks again
 

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Be careful moving snow with the bucket, there's no trip mechanism like a plow. I was cleaning up some snow this morning and caught a rock at very low speed. My wife flew out of her seat and hit her knees on the dash. I hit my elbow on the door latch. I'll be fine, but she's in serious pain. Really lucky I wasn't going any faster.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
So I did some tweaking on the HP spring today and here are my results.

I first tightened it all the way and experienced some lugging so I backed it out about 1 turn.

Here are my numbers now with a warmed up machine on level pavement. Bucket attached, half fuel, 160 lb driver.

Idle - 1380 rpm
Fast idle - 3810
Max throttle in high - 3450
Max throttle in Low - 3730

Forward speed high - 27 mph
Forward speed low - 14
Reverse high - 13
Reverse low - 6

So my max rpm in high seems low at 3450. What are u guys getting? Also, do I need to lower my reverse speed in high? Will that gain forward speed? I have my service manual now, so I will read and see if I can make sense of it all.
 

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It's possible to overdo it, drop reverse speed with no gain in forward speed

Also, do I need to lower my reverse speed in high? Will that gain forward speed?
Yes -- there's a trade-off between top speed in reverse and forward, to a degree.
 

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You need two things to attain maximum speed, full stroke on the hydrostatic pump, and full governed rpm on the engine. Your low range speed of 14 mph indicates that you are getting both, or at least very close to it. All adjustments apply to both high and low range, so assuming the travel control cable is adjusted properly the lack of speed in high must be attributed only to the low engine rpm. Check to make sure the throttle cable is pulling the lever on the injection pump all the way against the stop when the travel pedal is fully depressed. Assuming it is, the reason you can't attain full speed (32-35 mph) is simply lack of power. You can relieve some tension on the HP spring. This will destroke the pump a little bit, which in turn will put less load on the engine and allow the rpm to rise. You will loose a little bit of speed by reduced pump stroke, but gain a little speed by increased engine rpm. The end result may be higher travel speed, or it may not. You need to find the right balance. Low range gives the engine more mechanical advantage and so the adjustments are less critical in low. All adjustments should be made in high range unless you plan to rarely use high. Your engine isn't broken in yet and probably isn't making full power. You may be able to get more out of it after putting a few hundred hours on it.

I'd go over all of the adjustments in sequence just to make sure they're right. I'd bet you're willing to spend more time making sure it's right than whoever did it last time. The pdf manual that's going around covers everything except the HP spring adjustment which can be done last.

Edit to add: I agree with what KeviNH said. But I would use reverse speed only as an indicator, and not as a reference for adjustment. If you adjust the travel control cable for full pump stroke in forward, you reverse speed will be whatever it is, and it will be faster than you ever need to go in reverse.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Makes sense. I think you are correct that most of my adjustments are good... Or pretty close. I will tweak the spring with some fine tune adjustments and see what that does. When I got the machine the spring bolt was approx 2-2.5 turns out, and my top end was 25. It's now approx 1 turn out and has improved.

One other thing to mention... I didn't have a tire gauge that read below 20 psi, but I thought the Pressures were ok by pushing on them. I found a tire gauge today in the toolkit that came with the Brutus and the fronts were only 7psi. I'm guessing this will make a little difference as well. That combined with the breakin period may get me closer to optimum.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
So I backed off the spring about a half turn, and it increased my max RPM to 3550, and my speed to about 29. However, I am getting a drop in Rpm when I reach about 10-12 mph. The rpm drops to about 3300 for a few seconds and then gradually picks back up. I first thought it was just cold, but it continued once warmed up.

Any thoughts?
 

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That drop in RPM is caused by the hydraulic drive motor shifting from low to high. It starts out in a low speed/high torque state. When you reach a certain speed the ECU activates the two speed valve under the drivers seat. The two speed valve sends high pressure fluid to the drive motor, causing it to shift to high speed/low torque state. The shift puts additional load on the engine and causes the RPM to drop momentarily. If you could watch the command lever while you're driving you would also see the HP spring compress during the shift.
 
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