My 2005.5 KTM 950 Adventure has worn the same Touratech skidplate since it was new, and from the photo it is easy to see it has stood the test of time well, and is still completely serviceable. Even just looking at the few years I have owned this machine, it has gone over countless downed trees, a few enduro-cross style partly buried in tractor-tires, two desert races, and an 8 hour iron-man GP. That is not including the thousands of miles of Backcountry Discovery Routes, Touratech Rally scouting, and other more pedestrian dirt uses. Really, the only reason I am installing a new one is because we are cooking up some skidplate tests, and want to track the progression of scars and damage over the next year, as well as write the installation walk through found below.
A quick note on skidplate technology: Like with most things on motorcycles, weight and strength are always the two opposing factors. You could get your crazy uncle to weld up some absurd 1/4” thick plate steel monstrosity that would never fail, and it would probably also stop small-arms fire. The downside is it would also weigh the same as a bank vault door. There is a balance that needs to be found. Protect the vital bits, but do it without adding too much weight.
I know I ran my original Touratech skidplate, though more than it should have handled, and it did fine. I couldn’t make my skidplate fail, and I beat on it like it owed me money.
Installation is really easy. Remove the stock “skidplate,” and pull the rubbers. Since it is now 2015, I would recommend just buying new rubber bits, they are cheap (KTM PN: 600.03.096.000), and the stock ones tend get hard and brittle over time.
Put the rubbers into the Touratech frame where required.
Install the awesome new skid plate to the original factory skidplate mounting points.
That is it.
If you have a 990 there is a bracket to install for the battery, this is shown in the provided instructions.
When doing an oil change, don’t try to use the oil drain hole for the sump, you’ll just make a mess. I tried it once, and now just remove the four bolts holding the skidplate on, and save the time of cleaning up the mess.
This is a great piece of gear, just look at the photos of KTM LC8’s racing and getting weird, most of the time you’ll find a Touratech Skidplate on the bottom side. Good luck out there, have fun, and godspeed.
About the author: Eric is an incurable motorcycle nut. He’s owned and wrenched on everything from vintage scooters and vintage motocross bikes to modern machines, and now spends much of his time riding and talking about adventure motorcycles. If you have called the Touratech store in Seattle or called the offices, chances are you’ve talked to Eric. Eric came in second place in the adventure class at the Stumpjumper Desert 100 Race in 2014, and recently finished the 2015 race in eighth place in the same class. He is a key part of the Touratech race team, and when he’s not racing a local hare-scramble or vintage motocross race, or working on motorcycles in his garage, he can be found roaming the Cascade mountains on his KTM 950 Adventure looking for new routes for the annual Touratech Rally.
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