By May 21, 2009

SW-MOTECH crash bars for a 2005 Yamaha FZ6 review

One of the things I miss most about the 2004 BMW R1150R I owned were the auxiliary lights. The BMW had PIAA lights mounted to the crash bars that protected the engine in case of an accident. My FZ6 doesn’t really have any place to mount auxiliary lights, so I started looking into installing some crash bars on old Cylon.

Of course, not too many people want to put auxiliary lights or highway pegs on their sport-ish FZ6 bikes, so my choices were limited. Through research on a few FZ6 forums, I found that most people manufactured their own “engine cages” for stunting. There weren’t many commercially-available options for crash bars for Cylon — in fact, there was only one, by SW-MOTECH out of Germany.

I bought the crash bars, footpeg mounts, and footpegs from Twisted Throttle. They are absolutely fantastic to deal with, and I have ordered a few times from them. My order arrived in two days, even though I selected UPS ground shipping and expected my order to take one of those days to process. Twisted Throttle is in Rhode Island, so that helped with the shipping, but I was still impressed by the order fulfillment process — somewhere most motorcycle e-tailers fall flat.

Anyway, on to the installation. The instructions were in German, and the line art schematic wasn’t a whole lot of help. Luckily there are just three pieces to the cage not including the bolts, washers, and nuts.

The worst part of the installation was installing the left hand side. This part of the bike was super nasty for some reason. I had to use a socket extension on my ratchet to tighten the bolt, and things were slippery from the gunk. The right side was much, much easier.

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The primary anchor point for the SW-MOTECH crash bars are the two engine mounting bolts, one on each side of the engine.

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The secondary mounting point is on the engine block near the footpegs. On the left side of the bike, this point is near the oil filter.

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On the right side, the anchor point is closer to the right footpeg and is a lot easier to get to than the left side.

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The two bars are mated together in front of the bike by this.

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The installation directions are sparse. I installed the piece upright so I could tighten the bolts more easily. I don’t have the largest hands, but I had to screw the bolts down about a quarter turn at a time.

I kept the engine mounts just a little loose until I got this piece put together. I needed the slight play in the crash bars in order to match them up in this tube. This was the only part of the installation that made me nervous because at first the crash bars don’t line up well together. However, once I tightened each side to proper specifications and put the tube on everything turned out okay.

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Installation complete, right side.

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Right side, close up.

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Installation complete, left side. Note how the crash bars slightly obscure the oil filter (yellow).

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Left side close-up.

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Front view of the SW-MOTECH engine crash bars installed on my FZ6.

At $149.99 before shipping from Twisted Throttle, the SW-MOTECH crash bars are not cheap. However, they are well built and the finish seems durable. It is also the only mass-manufactured engine guard I am aware of for the Yamaha FZ6. Unlike the equally expensive rack for my Givi hard luggage, the SW-MOTECH guard fit easily onto my FZ6 with limited fuss.

I will write another post about putting highway pegs onto the SW-MOTECH bars. If you’re looking for an engine crash guard for your Yamaha FZ6, the SW-MOTECH frame is strongly recommended.

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Posted in: motorcycling, review

6 Comments on "SW-MOTECH crash bars for a 2005 Yamaha FZ6 review"

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  1. Michael Schultz says:

    I have a 2004 FZ6 and was considering putting the SW-Motech engine guard on mine too. Thanks for the timely review. I was wondering why you chose the black rather than the silver. Also, can you still install frame sliders on the upper mounting points after the cage is installed?

  2. drfaulken says:

    Hi Michael,

    I chose the black because I like the silver and black color scheme of the bike and thought the cage would be a nice contrast to the engine. I was also concerned that the silver of the crash bars may not match the silver of my engine.

    I had frame sliders before I installed the bars. The bolts that came with the sliders definitely would not fit both. You may be able to get longer bolts, but I wonder if extending the bolt and slider out farther would put unnecessary stress on the engine mount point in case of a crash.

    I don’t know much about physics, though, so take that with a grain of salt 🙂

    Good luck, and I highly recommend you get them from Twisted Throttle.

  3. paul says:

    hello,

    Did you have a chance to put the highway pegs on your crash bars?

    thanks

  4. DrFaulken says:

    Hi Paul,

    I sure did. They worked great, and I really miss them (I have since sold my FZ6 to a co-worker).

    I bought the SW-MOTECH Master Grip pegs (part number MFW.050.00.03.00-8 at twistedthrottle.com). They worked very well.

  5. Dan says:

    Do these need to be removed to replace the oil filter? Or do they block anything else crucial to normal maintenance?

    • DrFaulken says:

      Hi Dan,

      I did not need to remove the guards to replace the oil filter, and I used the longer Super Tech ST7317 filters from Wal-Mart.

      I miss those crash bars, they were great. 🙂