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Old 03-02-2015, 08:00 AM   #1
Blackhawkx OP
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Altrider skid plate

Hello everyone.
Just purchased and installed an AltRider skid plate for my 2015 R1200GSA/W. The installation was straight forward, all hardware and components were of the highest quality. I decided on the Black color to match my engine. The plate is extremely light and the welds look perfect. I preferred the AltRider design over all the others because of its mounting locations, I don't have any history with AltRider nor have I used any of their products before. Purely based this decision on the way they designed this. The rear portion of the plate mounts to the provided replacement center stand dowels, they're easily removed by taking off the snap rings. It's a great location to secure this thing. The front part of the plate uses these brackets that mount to where the frame bolts into the motor and the crash bars, huge bolts that look like they can take a hit. Really no where on this skid plate does it touch the motor, I've been using it for about two weeks. Now I'm worry free when going over obstacles, when it bottoms out all that energy is being transfer to a safer location rather than my very expensive boxer motor. I'm also using a Wunderlich fender extender in conjunction with the plate, there's some contact between the two at certain suspension levels, but they do work with each other fine.

I really don't see the other brands having anything better. I liked the Black Dog plate and was seriously considering them, but look where it mounts. Straight to the motor, no thank you.

Came in to work on my day off for the install.


I was in urgent need of better protection.


whole lot more protection!


These are the dowels I was talking about. The right one is the factory piece and the left is the new part


Where it mounts in front


My fender extender


Try out the clearance and durability.


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Old 03-02-2015, 09:54 AM   #2
Transport
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Nice!
I have one on order, so glad to read positive feedback.
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Old 03-02-2015, 04:20 PM   #3
c90dan
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Mine is sitting on my work bench to be installed on Wed.
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Old 03-05-2015, 09:47 PM   #4
RJK
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I just installed the bracket and skid plate on a ’15 GSAW w/OEM crash bars today since it was snowing like crazy outside. It took a lot longer than I thought. Those rear pivot stand dowels where a PIA to get in…especially the left side. Even with a 13mm socket stuck in the hole…acting as a slave pin, the Altrider replacement dowel did not want to go in. Maybe my center stand springs are too new, but they pulled down just enough that the holes would not line up no matter how I articulated and turned the center stand.

I finally pulled a MacGyver and stretched the spring/bracket off using 550 cord and adjustable hand clamp, using the base of the center stand for leverage. Once the tension was relieved by taking off the spring plate, the dowel slipped in fine. I reattached the springs using the hand clamp in reverse. FWIW, I tried the ‘coin’ trick, vice grips, etc…but those springs were too tight and the lack of space made it too difficult.

I also have no idea, how you’re supposed to torque those fasteners down because you have to get to them from the opposite side. There’s so little space between the skid plate, center stand, exhaust (right side). I just winged it. I guess a crows foot would work on the right side, but that’s too specialized for me.

I have no complaints about the product, but I definitely had a hard time with the install. YMMV.
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Old 03-06-2015, 06:38 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RJK View Post
I just installed the bracket and skid plate on a ’15 GSAW w/OEM crash bars today since it was snowing like crazy outside. It took a lot longer than I thought. Those rear pivot stand dowels where a PIA to get in…especially the left side. Even with a 13mm socket stuck in the hole…acting as a slave pin, the Altrider replacement dowel did not want to go in. Maybe my center stand springs are too new, but they pulled down just enough that the holes would not line up no matter how I articulated and turned the center stand.

I finally pulled a MacGyver and stretched the spring/bracket off using 550 cord and adjustable hand clamp, using the base of the center stand for leverage. Once the tension was relieved by taking off the spring plate, the dowel slipped in fine. I reattached the springs using the hand clamp in reverse. FWIW, I tried the ‘coin’ trick, vice grips, etc…but those springs were too tight and the lack of space made it too difficult.

I also have no idea, how you’re supposed to torque those fasteners down because you have to get to them from the opposite side. There’s so little space between the skid plate, center stand, exhaust (right side). I just winged it. I guess a crows foot would work on the right side, but that’s too specialized for me.

I have no complaints about the product, but I definitely had a hard time with the install. YMMV.
A fellow (sstracke) in this thread http://www.advrider.com/forums/showt...r#post26119825 had difficulty, and found that it was easier to put the back end on first.
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Old 03-06-2015, 12:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emoto View Post
A fellow (sstracke) in this thread http://www.advrider.com/forums/showt...r#post26119825 had difficulty, and found that it was easier to put the back end on first.
Thanks Emoto

I remember reading your write-up but must not have read the entire thread

It'll definitely help when I take it off for oil changes.
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Old 03-06-2015, 02:04 PM   #7
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I noticed you removed your pannier brackets. Does that mean you don't use hard cases? Do you ever worry about damage to your exhaust pipe with a fall to the right? Just curious because me side cases have saved my bacon, and damage to the bike few times off road. At least when it comes to picking that bad boy back up and not having to lift as far.
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Old 03-06-2015, 09:31 PM   #8
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I don't really worry about it. Haven't dropped it yet. The traction control and ABS has saved my ass each time. I'm a body builder with strong legs and arms, just man handle it where I want it. I guess if the exhaust gets damaged it'll give me reason to get a Akro muffler
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Old 03-06-2015, 10:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RJK View Post

I also have no idea, how you’re supposed to torque those fasteners down because you have to get to them from the opposite side. There’s so little space between the skid plate, center stand, exhaust (right side). I just winged it. I guess a crows foot would work on the right side, but that’s too specialized for me.

I have no complaints about the product, but I definitely had a hard time with the install. YMMV.
I agree 100% with you. Had the exact same issue trying to torque the fasteners.... Discussed it with an Altrider rep at the Calgary Bike show, and he said he had no idea what I was talking about, as it was a walk in the park... Go figure!!!!
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Old 03-07-2015, 05:04 AM   #10
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It'll definitely help when I take it off for oil changes.
I've only done one oil change so far with my Altrider skid plate in place, and there was no reason to remove it. The bottom hole gives good access to the oil drain plug, and with the oil filter now installed on the side of the engine it can be pulled and reinstalled with the skid plate in place.
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Old 03-07-2015, 10:37 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by jdub View Post
I've only done one oil change so far with my Altrider skid plate in place, and there was no reason to remove it. The bottom hole gives good access to the oil drain plug, and with the oil filter now installed on the side of the engine it can be pulled and reinstalled with the skid plate in place.
Thanks jdub.

With your suggestion, I'm going to try it once w/o taking it off, but am thinking the oil drain is gonna make a mess.

I'll try it though.
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Old 03-07-2015, 04:08 PM   #12
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There was some mess from the oil drain plug, but it wasn't too bad to clean up and I think the cleaning was a lot less effort than pulling the skid plate would be. Now that I know what to expect, next time I'll stuff some rags between the engine sump and the skid plate all around the drain access hole and it should stay cleaner.

Good luck with yours!
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Old 03-08-2015, 03:54 AM   #13
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Yep they look like the best on the market. Does anyone know if it works with the Hepco & Becker crash bars?
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Old 03-23-2015, 08:28 AM   #14
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Alright guys and girls, I've had this skid plate for about a month now. Its been tough and saved my bike on many occasions, but yesteday proved this thing is a beast. I was doing a hill climb with a nasty lip at the top, couldn't see other side. Once at the top I went airborne and came down hard on a hidden dirt mound. Rather than the suspension taking the blunt force my skid plate took it all. This here is the aftermath. Not much, but you can see the weak point being the center and now the plate has a slight bend. The exhaust has a contact mark from the plate when it bent.
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Blackhawkx screwed with this post 03-25-2015 at 09:16 AM
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Old 03-23-2015, 09:58 AM   #15
Friz Freleng
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I wouldn't necessarily call it a weak point. It sounds like the plate did exactly what it was supposed to do, which was to absorb the energy of the impact and protect the engine. Besides, with aluminum you can always take the plate off and hammer it back into position. Too bad about the exhaust nick...that's something you can't do much about other than to brag about it. :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackhawkx View Post
Alright guys and girls, I've had this skid plate for about a month now. Its been tough and saved my bike on many occasions, but yesteday proved this thing is a beast. I was doing a hill climb with a nasty lip at the top, couldn't see other side. Once at the top I went airborne and came down hard on a hidden dirt mound. Rather than the suspension taking the blunt force my skid plate took it all. This here is the aftermath. Not much, but you can see the weak point being the center and now the plate has a sight bend. The exhaust has a contact mark from the plate when it bent.
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