the front tires, he had to change a few fuses for the traction
control system and the anti-lock brakes had to be disabled. A
pair of metal plates were then installed and heavy-duty skis,
similar to the ones used on a ski plane, were attached. On
the back end, plates were installed and a pair of tracks from
a side-by-side ATV were attached to the plates and the rear
Humphries estimates it took him about three weeks to
complete the conversion.
“It was a nice bit of work,” he said.
White’s already converted vehicle cost him C$8,500.
Humphries, meanwhile, purchased his for C$3,300 and spent
another C$3,400 converting it for winter use.
Another question Humphries and White commonly get is
what kind of speeds their vehicles are capable of. While they
can go as fast as 43 miles per hour, White says he prefers to
keep his speed to between 20 and 25 mph most times.
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“The tracks on these belong to an ATV and I don’t
think they’re meant to be doing 70 or 80 kilome-tres
45 or 50 miles an hour,” said White, who lives in
Humphries, a heavy equipment operator in Nunavut for
much of the year, says his converted Smart car is ideal for
getting back and forth between his home in New-Wes-Valley,
N.L., and his cottage near Indian Bay, N.L.
It provides a smooth ride as long as you stick to groomed
trails, he says, and in most cases it handles much the same as
a regular Smart car.
“If you can drive a car, you can drive a Smart car with
tracks,” he said. “It’s perfect on a groomed trail. It’s a little
different than driving (on the road), but not a lot. The main
difference is the steering. You’ve got skis instead of wheels so
you can only turn about a quarter turn or half turn each way
with the skis. But it handles fantastic. No problem at all.”
PHOTO COURTESY OF JEFF HUMPHRIES
12 April 2020 | snowopsmag.com