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Another Crash Bar Thread

14044 Views 60 Replies 24 Participants Last post by  akitatwin
Hi guys, just got a 22 ATAS ES DCT and working on outfitting it. Right now I'm on crash bars. I know there are alot of threads on bars and I think I have read most of them plus what's on Facebook, etc. It seems the 'perfect' (style, protection, install/fit, etc) does not exist :-( I was kind of torn between Heed and Givi but it seems now I'm at a stalemate again. Here is a summary of everything I've come across, then I'll discuss where I'm at...

  • Best looking. Subjective but I think they have the cleanest lines to leave bike looking best
  • Price/Shipping is good
  • Protection seems mostly very good
  • Install - don't have to drop exhaust but also see cons below
  • Durability of black. Killswitch on another thread indicated black scratched very easily. It sounds like a think coat of paint and not powder coated (can others confirm)?
  • Install - While exhaust doesn't need to be dropped it sounds like a tough install still plus it sounds like several ENGINE connections rather than FRAME
  • Appears to be a vibration issue on many of them - possibly due to engine connections
  • Right side bar is close to brake pedal, possibly necessitating pedal extension

  • Price/Shipping is pretty good, 2nd to Heed
  • Protection seems mostly very good
  • Install - don't have to drop exhaust
  • Seems to use frame mounts, not engine
  • I think my biggest issue is looks. There is just ALOT of metal and cross pieces and really takes away from looks of bike
  • I've read the steel is not as good quality as others but seems like its same 2mm thickness as most others
  • Horrible install instructions, just Ikea like pictures and no good videos found
Alt Rider
  • Made and sold in USA
  • Supposedly solid performance but I've seen mixed results in practice
  • Price - more expensive than others but not by much unless adding skid plate
  • Install difficulty - most drop exhaust but appears to be frame mounted, not engine
SW Motech
Not considered if for no other reason than the bolt by riders ankle - very poor

Outback Motortek
  • Made and sold in USA
  • Supposedly excellent protection and only one actually crash (really drop) tested
  • Most expensive
  • Install difficulty - most drop exhaust but appears to be frame mounted, not engine
  • Ugly like the Givi - there is just alot of bar and other metal taking away from aesthetics

Ok, so I hope that is a pretty accurate summary. For me, I will probably be doing 80/20 paved with some non demanding off road like dirt/gravel etc. I won't be doing any sophisticated trails etc. So I'm most concerned about protection from simple drops and low/medium speed falls. A high speed or serious crash and the bars are least of my concern. I think ANY of the bars would meet my protection criteria.

The next things are ease of install / maintenance and looks. I'd rather not drop the exhaust and take half the bike apart but I do prefer frame attachment points instead of engine. As for looks, I know these are crash bars and many would argue it doesn't matter as long as it protects well but hey, these are great looking bikes that we spent alot of $ on so I don't really want to cover it all up with a bunch of steel bar. I think the Heed wins this one hands down. And last is maintenance - I would really rather not have to remove and re-install the bars each time I want to do maintenance on bike, remove tupperware, etc.

So - thoughts on above?
Heed - is the paint on them really that bad - they are not powder coated??? Is there really vibration die to engine mounting?

Givi - do they really look as bad as thought? Does anyone have good pictures of them in black on your bike?

Thanks for following along and providing your thoughts (of course based on your actual experience)!
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61 - 61 of 61 Posts
Currently have the full Heed Bunker crash bars, but they start annoy me more over time. Have protected my bike well in all my falls, but do I really need that huge cage around my bike? It's heavy and it vibrates a lot.

I picked up a cheap used set of SW Motech crash bars for 50 bucks to replace the Heeds. That should protect the fairing just fine. I see that they come included with some rubber grommets so I expect them to be less vibey.

I don't think crash bars make a lot of sense to protect the engine casing. In the case of a hypothetical smashing upon rocks, bars leave a lot of exposed space.
KTM/Husky also don't do it that way. Makes more sense to have a bigger skid plate and ABS or Carbon fiber cover plates covering the engine.
61 - 61 of 61 Posts