Written by Doug Miller. Posted in Gear
It can be difficult to choose the best protection for your ADV motorcycle because there’s so much to choose from. But if you want to protect your Harley-Davidson Pan America and ensure you can overcome pretty much anything the trail throws at you, I recommend the Black Dog Cycle Works (BDCW) skid plate—it’s built like a tank!
The BDCW’s Pan Am skid plate comes well-packaged, has straightforward installation instructions, and all the necessary parts for mounting it correctly are included. The only stumbling block is removing the Pan Am’s centerstand’s springs, a process that could use an extra set of hands. However, I managed to tackle it solo, which took a little more time.
Reinstalling the centerstand springs was also a bit of a challenge, but the instructions were excellent and it ended up going more smoothly than I’d anticipated. And once the rear mount was on, the rest of the process was super easy.
The skid plate is lighter than it looks, and really improves the Pan Am’s aesthetics. Made of 3/16-inch 5052 aluminum and powder-coated black it blends well with H-D’s aesthetics.
Something else I like is that its extended rearward section protects more of the mechanicals. It covers much of under-motor real estate, both upfront and along the sides. Another benefit is BDCW’s hard mounting system—which is not mounted to the engine (a bad idea!) like the factory plate. This method shields the engine with far superior engineering that provides way better protection against those big hits. And as it’s mounted with just four bolts, oil changes should be a breeze.
Black Dog makes extremely high-quality products that are designed and manufactured with pride and quality right here in the U.S. With Black Dog Cycle Works, you might pay a little more than some other products, but you’ll be happy you did.
- High-quality materials
- Solid protection from rocks and debris
- Easy to remove and reinstall
- It’s pretty expensive
- The initial install is tricky