Review: Outback Motortek Guards / Skid Plate
I've been using Outback Motortek guards for over 6 months and have tested them in all sorts of scenarios, including a head-on collision!
Life before Outback Motortek
Prior to partnering with Outback Motortek, my F 800 GS had the BMW 'lower crash bars' installed. These bars do a good job protecting the engine, BUT … in an incident mid last year, where I hit a bad patch of road at 100km/h, and my bike and I went sliding down the road, I found that there still was a lot of 'cosmetic damage' e.g. the fairings, mirrors, indicators, and the windscreen were damaged:
So I was looking around for some quality upper crash bars, and cue: Outback Motortek!
A little bit about Outback Motortek
Outback Motortek was founded by Kelli and Lorry Gombos who 'go beyond designing, manufacturing and selling adventure bike accessories' … they 'love anything adventurous on two wheels' and this flows through to their products and production value, not to mention their customer care.
The products are manufactured in Europe, and they have 3 online locations (Canada, US and Latin America, and Europe) … but they ship worldwide.
My parcel came from Canada, nicely bubble wrapped, and with all the fittings required:
Well-made and a really solid, robust feel. The hand-welded finish is top quality:
Easy to install. Great powder-coated finish (I picked the silver colour, which I love).
The Crash Bars
Now, remember when I mentioned that I'd had the opportunity to test these in a head-on collision? Watch the video here, and you can see that the crash bars really did their job. Even though the front of the bike was completely ruined, which is to be expected when someone decides to hit you head-on, the engine itself, and the side fairings even, were untouched. So, in a less dramatic situation, when a small drop or a slip can cause thousands of dollars in damage, these bars will go a long way in helping to protect and prevent such expenses.
Anyone who 'adventure rides' knows the importance of a good skid plate. Having the Outback Motortek skid plates installed means I can confidently tackle tough terrains and continue to push my riding, knowing that the engine is as well protected as possible. They are designed to be well ventilated and also feature an embossed design, so they act as a 'glider' – helping the bike slide over hard objects.
Here's some pics from the accident ... as you can see, they, together with the crashbars, were integral to protecting the engine:
I think I've pretty much covered it, in that my overall impression is: well designed, practical, and a tough make.
So what else would you want?
Well, they look great. The bars have been shaped to match the design of the faring, and overall, it gives the bike a meaner, more 'bring-it-on' look, which is how they make you feel!
And if a bad-ass look isn't enough, and like me, you're a specs nerd, then go to their site for all the details:
To get discounted shipping rates when ordering from Australia contact OM at firstname.lastname@example.org