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Installing A Rite Performance Radiator Roost Guard

Posted in How To: Engine on April 8, 2017
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Roost happens, and part of driving and competing off-road is the chance that rocks will be launched at you by another vehicle, or by your own vehicle hitting itself with debris, are good. It’s why race helmets have near ballistic-rated face shields. So it goes that the chances of rocks hitting tender parts are good, and by that we mean bad, especially if one of those tender bits is your radiator.

The fact that Curtis Zamora at Rite Performance even thought of producing this Radiator Roost Guard for the Yamaha YXZ 1000R was due to his buddy having one, and they noticed that his radiator had been damaged by flying rocks that he encountered while out with his buddies. To look at it, it seems that the radiator is fairly out of the way, but closer inspection shows that the radiators on the YXZ’s are positioned behind the front suspension components, rather than out in front of them. That means that it’s possible that it was his buddy’s own YXZ that may have sent the rocks toward the radiator from below.

This is what you need protection from.

Either way, the need for a guard is there, and now one’s available from Rite Performance. There hasn’t been any change to the YXZ’s basic physical design, so the RP Radiator Boost Guard fits the 2016 and 2017 YXZ 1000R’s whether they are shifters or the SS paddle shifter models.

Rite has built their guard using 3D CAD and a laser cutter to produce the cold-rolled steel frame that has a stainless steel mesh centersection. A Rubber Isolator is in place to protect the area where the frame contacts the radiator, and factory hardware is used to bolt it together. The frame features a black powdercoated finish.

Made from cold-rolled steel with a stainless steel centersection, the Rite Performance Radiator Roost Guard is CAD designed and laser cut for precision.

Installation is simple, yet slightly involved as the entire front plastic section of bodywork needs to be removed to get to the radiator. It’s not difficult, as it just bolts to the YXZ frame, but figure that this install will take about an hour to complete.

This close-up shot shows that the YXZ 1000R’s radiator is placed behind the front suspension where debris could possibly get to the radiator.
Rite says that this is an easy install that can be done in your own garage, so we put that to the test too.
The body is held in place with screws and bolts, but comes off easily enough.
The electronics sandwich the body to the frame, so it too needs to be unbolted. No connections need to be removed though so disconnecting the battery isn’t necessary.
As there are mounting bolts beneath the fenders, the fenders need to be removed.
Nearly the entire body section comes off in one piece, and it’s even lightweight to boot.
The upper radiator-mounting hardware is removed. They’ll be reused to hold the Roost Guard in place as well.
Yamaha has a hard rubber upper section to help channel the airflow through the radiator. It’s temping to try and force the Roost Guard down through the very narrow slot between the channel and the radiator, but the gap isn’t quite large enough, so off it comes.
With that, the radiator is exposed.
Many vehicles use a channel as the lower radiator mount; the YXZ does as well and Rite Performance also uses the stock lower radiator channel to hold the lower edge of their unit in place.
The Roost Guard is lowered into place.
It’s not as tight a fit as it looks, but the rubber backing on the Roost Guard should protect the radiator itself from any rubbing the two parts will do.
The stock hardware is used to bolt the Roost Guard in place.
With that, the install of the Rite Performance Radiator Roost Guard is almost done.
All that’s left to do is to reinstall the bodywork.
With the bodywork back in place, this Yamaha YXZ 1000R SS is ready for whatever comes its way. Is it going to stop a boulder? No, but it will keep the smaller stuff heading toward your SxS’s radiator (at about 50 mph!) from doing more damage that it needs to.


Rite Performance

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