Acerbis Honda CRF450R Skid Plate - Dirt Rider Magazine

Finding the right skid plate for your machine can be a tricky ordeal, because you need just the right balance between protection and performance. In other words, you want to find something that weighs less than a standard cinder block while still guarding your bike's underside from all the nasty stuff the great outdoors may throw at it. Oh, and all without changing or altering frame flex, please.Acerbis (pronounced uh-chair-bees) has what it feels is the perfect skid plate for both MX and off-road usage, and it's made of-you guessed it-plastic. The crafty Italians at Acerbis have a knack for manufacturing sturdy, lightweight plastic components, and the skid plate follows this trend of simplicity and protection. To install the plastic skid plate on a Honda 450, I simply unbolted the stock components, slam-dunked them into the trash can and mounted up the new unit. Due to the locking-rear of the plate, only one bolt is necessary, but despite this Spartan design I never had the skid plate come loose. I did see a similar Acerbis plate lying in the middle of the track at Glen Helen one Thursday, but I'm guessing that dude had never heard of Loctite.As expected, the Acerbis setup didn't change the handling of the bike at all. With its low weight and non-rigid design, the plate wasn't even noticeable while riding. Like most skid plates, this one catches a fair amount of dirt, but it's so easy to remove this didn't bug me. The plastic surface of the skid plate sits well on a bike stand, and it was a cinch to clean off with a power washer.I initially tested the durability of the skid plate through regular moto-induced wear and tear. It held up without complaint, never snagging, breaking or falling off. This was enough to convince me of its value, but the true test came when I landed on a rider (unintentionally, of course!) over Pala Raceway's massive finish line jump the day before the pro National. It's a long story, but the skid plate on the CRF450R I was riding must have directly impacted the poor rider's silencer or footpeg, because it was enough to gouge a hole in the bottom of the Acerbis plate. Still, the underside of my bike was well protected and I've continued to use the Acerbis setup with great results, even with the accidental "speed hole" installed. Considering how much a new frame and engine cases cost, I'm a firm believer the $79.95 Acerbis skid plate saved me some serious dough in the long run. -Chris Denison

Hard Parts 90.0
Installation 19/20
Function 45/50
Durability 8/10
Design 9/10
Price 9/10
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