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Discussion Starter #1
I read about guys complaining of the stock skid plate being unprotective. I though how bad can it be? Some people will embellish anything.
Well I pulled my plate off yesterday just to clean my bike some. I was shocked when I took off one rusty bolt and a light piece of aluminium swing down. There's nothing protecting the bottom of that engine! Even with the Heavy Duty aftermarket plate, riders should pick their lines carefully through the rocks. There's no undercarriage or anything to bolt to.
 

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From experience I thought the stock skid plate gave pretty good protection. Mother nature beat on mine for a good 9 years without transmitting any damage to the engine or frame.
Granted when replaced the OEM plate was a cracked, dented twisted relic of it's former self but it gave it's all properly doing it's job. The rubber isolation mounting is a major plus that the Ricochet lacks.
The replacement Ricochet I put on is starting to develop some cracks along the weld lines so nothing is perfect. Buddy Adam somehow managed to bend his ricochet. All depends on how hard one hits things I guess.
My second TW has a OEM skid plate off of a larger displacement XT which affords more coverage than the TW's but retains the nice rubber isolation mounts.
 

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Like Fred, my OEM skid plates have always endured a bit of abuse riding in rock gardens. Mine held up well and I always felt the bottom of the engine was protected well with the OEM skidplate with its crush absorber rubber cushions. It was protecting the sides of the engine (Flywheel/Clutch) area's which I felt were unprotected. Witnessed Smokerudder's XT225 get a hole punched in the clutch side cover by a rock which confirmed my concerns. Thankfully, he was able to temporarily repair it with JB Weld's Steel Stick and was able to ride the next day. I have the more protective Riccochet type skids on my TW's now and feel a little more protected but anything is possible especially reading what Fred wrote about Adams plate getting bent and cracks in weld lines.

P.S. I hope my discussion comments don't go AWOL like they have the past couple of days though it looks like the forum genies have made lost comments "magically reappear".
 

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Like Fred, my OEM skid plates have always endured a bit of abuse riding in rock gardens. Mine held up well and I always felt the bottom of the engine was protected well with the OEM skidplate with its crush absorber rubber cushions. It was protecting the sides of the engine (Flywheel/Clutch) area's which I felt were unprotected. Witnessed Smokerudder's XT225 get a hole punched in the clutch side cover by a rock which confirmed my concerns. Thankfully, he was able to temporarily repair it with JB Weld's Steel Stick and was able to ride the next day. I have the more protective Riccochet type skids on my TW's now and feel a little more protected but anything is possible especially reading what Fred wrote about Adams plate getting bent and cracks in weld lines.

P.S. I hope my discussion comments don't go AWOL like they have the past couple of days though it looks like the forum genies have made lost comments "magically reappear".
I, like admiral thought stock was OK until ... One desert ride I was climbing out of a wash on a slight right uphill rocky trail. With the tire turning to the right I hit a baseball size rock. I saw the rock but was committed to my line. Much to my surprise that rock kicked up and back in to my left side cover above the stock skid plate. I had this happen on my IT-490 years ago resulting in holed cover. Luckily no damage. In 2007 Ricochet or other skid plates were not available for TW yet. So I cut rear hook off the stocker and bolted to a stock TTR-225 plate with side case coverage. This served me well until my recent Ricochet upgrade.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
what did you bolt the rear of the TTR plate to? Did you weld tabs to the frame? I think I like the bolt on TtR plate better. Its has more area to let a pointed stone through but it looks sturdy and would add to the strength of the frame instead of just using the engine as a stressed member. Not that it matters, TWs have been doing fine for 30 years with this setup
 
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