Studding a snowmobile track

Tips and Tricks for Expert Snowmobile Track Studding

Whether you are concerned about safety or just want to optimize your sled’s performance, studding your snowmobile track is a great way to increase traction and control. Contrary to popular belief, studs aren’t just for racers. They can help keep any rider safer in icy conditions, particularly when icy patches sneak up on groomed trails.

Whether or not to stud your track is just the first question. Once you have decided to do it, there are a number of factors to consider:

Types of Studs

This is a case where bigger is most certainly not better! Studs that are too long can bend. It is generally recommended that for the typical (non-racing) rider, the length should be no more than 1/4- to 3/8-inch above the track.

The type of studs you purchase depend on the type of sled you are riding (particularly whether it is a one-ply or two-ply track) and what type of riding you will be doing. On Woody’s Traction site, you can input your sled’s year, make and model as well as your riding style to find the right studs.

Number of Studs

Studs are typically installed in amounts of 96, 120, 144 168 and 192. According to, you shouldn’t need more than 144 studs unless you are an ice racer. One of the biggest mistakes riders make is adding too many studs, which can weigh down the sled and affect its top speed. On the other hand, having too few studs can also cause problems, such as bending or breaking of the studs or damaging the track.

You may have heard that the number of studs depends on what type of riding you do (“trail riding,” “aggressive,” “competition,” etc.) The problem with that formula is that it depends on each rider’s interpretation of those terms. You can take that into consideration, but you also must consider the type of sled you’re riding. You’ll want to check your sled’s specifications for the right amount of studs. It is often said you shouldn’t use less than one stud per horsepower. Ultimately, the best way to determine the best number of studs is to add some, evaluate your performance and adjust accordingly.

Stud Patterns

There are a number of snowmobile stud patterns available online, with the “V” pattern being one of the most popular. The one you choose will depend largely on the performance you are trying to achieve, particularly whether you are trying to improve acceleration or cornering.

There is a lot of debate online regarding whether or not studs should be installed on the sides or only down the middle. Some sledders say studs on the sides are more likely to pull out and tear track edges. Other riders like the extra bite they get when cornering with studs placed on the sides of the track.

So do you put studs there or not? You’ll have to decide based on your needs, but if you do decide to stud the sides, be sure not to under-stud them. You should either use a minimum of one stud on every second outside row on each side of the track, or don’t put any outside of the slide rails at all. For sleds 500cc or larger, be sure to have one stud per outside row or none at all on each row outside of the slide rails.

Clearly, there’s a lot of homework to do before you can start studding your sled. But the safety and improved performance you’ll achieve with your new studs will undoubtedly make the whole process worth it.

Shop All Snowmobile Equipment



Company Information

Up North Sports
2000 Division St W
Bemidji, MN 56601

Toll Free: 1-866-335-8500
218-444-SNOW   (218-444-7669)
We Accept:
Visa MasterCard Discover American Express PayPal
McAfee SECURE sites help keep you safe from identity theft, credit card fraud, spyware, spam, viruses and online scams
Credit Card Services