In addition to putting on some “Bark Busters” to not only protect my hands, but also to protect my clutch and brake levers as well as my grips themselves, I recently ordered a set of engine guards (crash bars if you will) as I figured after a few spills and a broken fairing, I’d better try and protect the plastics as best as I can.
Yes, it’s an off-road bike and will get banged up, I still try and take care of my gear and I could learn to ride better or put on some protection. Now, protection has it’s drawbacks (as always), but it does have its benefits. These nifty bars don’t stick out too far, but they do add some extra weight. The will protect the front fairing as well as the lower front grill.
Enough about what they do, let’s take a look at what we received.
The guards came from Thailand and were well wrapped to keep them from getting scratched up in shipping. I know they will get banged up on the trail, but it’s nice to see them arrive safe and sound. Tools required are pretty limited. You’ll need an Allen wrench to remove your plastics, and a 14mm wrench and/or socket to remove the motor mount bolts and install the new hardware to allow you to strap on the guards.
While you don’t need a lot of tools, getting the washers, spacer and everything lined up so you can slide the bolts in place is not as easy as it sounds thanks to the exhaust and brake controls. On paper it looks like a 5 minute job, but in reality it took close to an hour to get plastics and mounts removed, then the new hardware put in place.
Once we tightened down the lock nuts onto the provided lock washers and torqued everything evenly from both sides, the plastics went back on quite quickly and easily. The guards make it a tad less easy to thread the plastics in place, but in the end, it was pretty simple to get it back together and ready for the trail.
Until I can tackle ruts with more confidence, I have confidence that these guards will prevent more broken pieces and save me some money.