There’s nothing quite like an amphibious ATV, which can be daunting if you’ve never worked on one before. How do you keep track of all the parts you’re taking off? Is there an easier way to access the components you need to work on? How do you keep from damaging the hull? These tips address these issues, make it easier to work on your Argo XTV.
Remember the Firewall is Removable
You will need to remove the firewall to access the panels covering the drive chains, and to work on the transmission and steering brakes. If your Argo’s transmission doesn’t have a dipstick you will need to remove the firewall to check the fluid level through the sight glass. Taking the firewall out also makes it easier to access the back of the engine and parts of the wiring loom.
The firewall on the Aurora is held down by 6 bolts. Once these bolts are removed, tilt the firewall back and lift it out of the vehicle. Other models have release catches on the top of the firewall. Turn these catches ¼ turn, then lift the firewall out, taking care to push the shift boot through the hole at the base of the wall.
As you disassemble your Argo, take photos with your smartphone that you can refer to later. A photo lets you see how these parts run through the engine compartment and dash, so you can get them back in the right place. This is especially handy for hoses and wiring harnesses. These parts may need clips or zip ties in certain places to keep them from rubbing against other components.
Sort Your Fasteners
Organizing everything you take off will make it easier to put your ATV back together. There are three ways you can do this:
Where possible, screw bolts back into their places after removal. This way, you know exactly where each bolt goes.
Need to leave the bolts off of a part for the time being? Place them in plastic bags or containers with labels explaining where they go.
Worried that you won’t remember the position of bolts and fasteners? Draw a rough outline of the part on a piece of cardboard. Push bolts and screws through this sheet, so their position on the drawing matches up with the part they came out of.
Clean as You Go
It’s always good practice to clean any part you remove from the vehicle. Dirt, mud and water can migrate into the drive system and engine compartment over time. Thick layers can impede cooling, but even the smallest bit of dirt can be a problem if it falls into the intake. Clean parts also make it easier to spot leaks: if you see a drip, you know it happened after the repair.
Remove the Right Part of the Rivet
When you remove rivets, you need to drill out the head, then push the stem out of the hole. If you try to drill out the stem, you risk going through the surrounding material and widening the hole. That can be a big problem when removing the rivets that hold together the top and bottom of the hull.
Always use a drill bit that’s larger than the stem, but smaller than the head. Once the head comes off, you may need to do a little filing to round off edges that can keep the stem in place.
Invest in Some Specialty Tools
For the most part, Argo designs their vehicles to be easy to service in the field. However, there are a few specialty tools that will make your life easier, whether you’re doing regular maintenance or major repairs.
– Amphibious ATV tires run at very low pressures that won’t show up accurately on a standard tire gauge. Argo makes a gauge that will give you an accurate measurement.
– Argo makes modified vise grips with cutouts designed to grip both ends of the drive chain together. This transforms master link installation from one of the most frustrating jobs to one of the easiest on your XTV.
– Admiral transmissions have a drain plug that doesn’t sit at the bottom of the case. To empty the transmission completely, you will need to use a fluid extractor. This giant syringe has a flexible hose that slides into the drain hole and rests at the bottom of the case, letting you remove that last bit of fluid and sediment.
Get the Right Parts, Tools and Accessories for Your Argo
Shank’s Argo is one of the largest Argo dealers in the East. We always have several XTV models in stock, as well as the OEM parts and accessories you need to get the most out of your vehicle. Don’t feel like tackling repairs yourself? Our service department can do the work for you. If you’re looking for an amphibious ATV, or you need help with your vehicle, visit us at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. You can also check our current stock of XTVs and order parts from us at www.shanksargo.com.