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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a couple of questions about accessorizing my newly ordered TRX500FA7 Rubicon Deluxe in matte gray metallic.

First- skid plates. Does anyone have experience with the Honda OE skid plates? Are the Iron Baltic HDPE or aluminum skid plates that much better? Or, Ricochet plates?

How difficult and time consuming are the IB or Ricochet plates to install? Quite frankly, I'm getting along in age and would prefer to have my dealer perform the install so the OEM skids are a consideration. However, if the Honda plates are vastly inferior, I'll certainly go in a different direction and tackle installation myself.

Lastly, is it difficult and time consuming to install a front winch? I presume I'll need to buy Honda's OEM winch plate and "accessory sub harness". Here again, I'm considering dealer installation.

To summarize, given enough time, I'm sure I could eventually get this stuff installed but I'm not mechanically inclined and my old bones aren't what they used to be...the idea of crawling around upside down is not too appealing to a senior citizen :laugh:

Thanks in advance for your feedback!
 

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Honda plates are usually just made by Moose, most guys are running either Aluminum Products or Ricochet. Either way the install time will be the same no matter what way you go, aftermarket or "so-called" OEM. It's not that hard to do youself, if you can sit the machine on the back rack it's easier, winch up to a rafter in your shed or something...

The Honda winch plate and sub harness make for the cleanest install, it's fairly time consuming running the wiring but I guess it depends on how picky you are on the routing. The dealer had installed a winch on my machine before I bought it, so they just charged for the parts and not the labour.

Really, any of these things you want the dealer to install it's best to decide before you purchase the machine, and try and work the install labour in on the deal IMO. But it sounds like you already have the machine....
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Really, any of these things you want the dealer to install it's best to decide before you purchase the machine, and try and work the install labour in on the deal IMO. But it sounds like you already have the machine....
Thanks for the input. I ordered it 6 days ago and the dealer called this afternoon to say it's going to take a few more days to locate this model. I agree I made a mistake by not negotiating for this stuff up front with the dealer. While waiting for it to arrive, I started thinking about having the dealer do the install rather than myself.
 

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I thought about doing the same thing when purchasing mine. I am glad I did not pay the dealer to do the install of the winch or plow. They wanted $550 for this.

I have the KFI stealth winch (3500 lb) and KFI plate. I am not mechanically inclined either but it really wasn't bad. The most difficult part was making sense of the directions. The plastics come off really easily and allow for clean wire routing. I picked up the accessory connector and hooked into that. I just cut the connector off of the wire harness and soldered straight to that. A butt connector also works.

I'm not anti dealer doing stuff but I have learned one thing the hard way. I may not have the knowledge of the service department but since it's my machine, I'm going to take my time and make sure it's right. All bolts tightened, dielectric grease added, etc... The dealer may not. I had the dealer install a winch on a former machine and I had stripped skid plate bolts and loose mount plate bolts.

Just some food for thought.


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I have a 16' Rubicon and I installed both of the parts you're inquiring about.

I've found that the dealers I've dealt are not as picky as YOU would be. They're about getting the machine in and out as fast as possible. Maybe it's just me. But I've been to 2 seperate dealers 2 different machines and same sour taste in my mouth.

The winch wasn't to bad. Best advice is if you plan on installing the winch take the front rack and plastics off. It sounds intimidating but it's really only about 8 bolts and a few plastic push pins. If you get the Honda branded Warn winch kit and the accessory harness it is 100% plug and play. The wires are all cut to length and fit like a glove.

As for the skid plates I purchased the Aluminum Products skid plates. They work as designed. Install was straight forward. Take off factory stuff install new plates. Like mac stated much easier if you can get it on the back rack. I did it on my back and it was kinda a b*tch but I'd do it again if I need to
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the excellent input. I'd certainly be slower but far, far more methodical with everything so it's done correctly. Plus, if I have problems later on, I'll know exactly how everything fits together.

I guess I just needed to be reminded of this- much appreciated!
 

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Thanks for the excellent input. I'd certainly be slower but far, far more methodical with everything so it's done correctly. Plus, if I have problems later on, I'll know exactly how everything fits together.

I guess I just needed to be reminded of this- much appreciated!
I really think there would be value in crawling around under there and getting to know the machine. I highly recommend you immediately place the unit in the garage, get the new parts and install it on a "clean" unit, so dirt, etc., are not dropping in you're eyes, etc.
 

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Thanks for the excellent input. I'd certainly be slower but far, far more methodical with everything so it's done correctly. Plus, if I have problems later on, I'll know exactly how everything fits together.



I guess I just needed to be reminded of this- much appreciated!


I really think there would be value in crawling around under there and getting to know the machine. I highly recommend you immediately place the unit in the garage, get the new parts and install it on a "clean" unit, so dirt, etc., are not dropping in you're eyes, etc.


I could not agree more with doing it while the machine is brand-new and clean. I have done it both ways and it makes a huge difference


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[/QUOTE]I could not agree more with doing it while the machine is brand-new and clean. I have done it both ways and it makes a huge difference[/QUOTE]

I concur and now before general maintenance/service on all my "used" stuff, i.e., tractor, ATV, Side by Side, etc., I clean it thoroughly the day before and allow it to dry completely including and lot limited to the engine, axles, body, and it just make the job so much nicer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Great idea, I'll order all of the goodies this week so they'll be here when I (hope) expect the new machine to arrive. It certainly makes sense to do everything when it's new and clean. Besides, doing it early on means you get to enjoy the accessories for the lifetime of the unit- not 5 years after you buy it!
 

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if there is a delay in the machine getting there, I would use that as leverage to get the new parts INSTALLED when it does ON there dime,
or sure wouldn't hurt to try that and see?

all them things a dealer will install faster than you will due to having done it more times and having the shop to work in, lift table and such
BUT like others said, your NOT going to maybe get it as neatly done as you might
and you won't get hands on experience with how it works or, JUST to double check and make sure its ALL good ALL Over
wouldn't be the first time a NEW what ever wasn't all put together
so some times getting hands on it, you can spot things you might other wise find out the hard way!
 

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Mrbb brings ups a good point and would consider my options now while waiting. I must admit, I am considering buying "specialty" Honda units for long term investment. That is, I can only see this unit in "mint" condition some 20 years from now worth significantly more than traditional options IMO...
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Mrbb brings ups a good point and would consider my options now while waiting. I must admit, I am considering buying "specialty" Honda units for long term investment. That is, I can only see this unit in "mint" condition some 20 years from now worth significantly more than traditional options IMO...
Well, y'all will find this hard to believe but I purchased my 2006 Honda in 2007 from Southern Honda Powersports for $5900 out the door. I only used it to maintain our steep 1 acre lot in Georgia so it had less than 60 hours when I sold it last week for $5200. It looked like new and I had a lot of interest. So....not a bad investment.

Now that I'm retired, the new one is going to get used much more often.
 

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Mrbb brings ups a good point and would consider my options now while waiting. I must admit, I am considering buying "specialty" Honda units for long term investment. That is, I can only see this unit in "mint" condition some 20 years from now worth significantly more than traditional options IMO...
Well, y'all will find this hard to believe but I purchased my 2006 Honda in 2007 from Southern Honda Powersports for $5900 out the door. I only used it to maintain our steep 1 acre lot in Georgia so it had less than 60 hours when I sold it last week for $5200. It looked like new and I had a lot of interest. So....not a bad investment.

Now that I'm retired, the new one is going to get used much more often.
Interesting point on the ATV. One of my best friends owns several John Deere dealerships and mentioned to me once, you buy this unit and downstream you will be able to sell it for what you paid for it, assuming you keep it like everything else you own. In my case, he was right. My take on "specialty" Honda units are those matte (would really like to see one in person), perhaps, orange, white or blue, the units which will likely be very few in numbers sold vs. resale red.
 

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Before using your delay as leverage, I would research how much the winch would cost to buy and install yourself. Then you can compare their price to how much it would cost you to do it. I don't know how much a markup there is on parts. But when I bought mine what the dealer wanted for a KFI winch kit I could buy the warn provantage for about $20 more online and install myself.
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The salesman called today to say they "finally tracked down" the Rubicon Deluxe in Matte Gray finish at another dealership and have arranged a trade. Supposedly it should be in tomorrow and ready for delivery late this week or early next week. It's no big deal to me but 2+ weeks does seem excessive.

As far as the accessories, he quoted full list price and $85 / hour installation. He estimated it would cost about $700 to install Honda skid plates, the Honda winch and heated grips. I told him that was absurd and I should get a price break for an all cash purchase and the delay. His response was classic salesman BS: "I'm in sales and the install guys are in service so we have to pay the back of the house the $85 / hour too". It's as if I'm supposed to believe the sales and service departments are two different companies! I just gave a big laugh and said I'd order the parts online and do the install myself.

Now, I had already decided to do the installs myself and will be placing my parts orders tomorrow but this is the kind of dealership BS that just insults customer's intelligence. Instead of making a little profit on the accessories and labor, now they'll make no profit at all except for the ATV.
 

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The salesman called today to say they "finally tracked down" the Rubicon Deluxe in Matte Gray finish at another dealership and have arranged a trade. Supposedly it should be in tomorrow and ready for delivery late this week or early next week. It's no big deal to me but 2+ weeks does seem excessive.

As far as the accessories, he quoted full list price and $85 / hour installation. He estimated it would cost about $700 to install Honda skid plates, the Honda winch and heated grips. I told him that was absurd and I should get a price break for an all cash purchase and the delay. His response was classic salesman BS: "I'm in sales and the install guys are in service so we have to pay the back of the house the $85 / hour too". It's as if I'm supposed to believe the sales and service departments are two different companies! I just gave a big laugh and said I'd order the parts online and do the install myself.

Now, I had already decided to do the installs myself and will be placing my parts orders tomorrow but this is the kind of dealership BS that just insults customer's intelligence. Instead of making a little profit on the accessories and labor, now they'll make no profit at all except for the ATV.
When anyone has what you want, especially limited models like what you are seeking then the table turns, i.e., negotiation a deal. Regardless, get the unit and install the parts and show US how nice the unit looks.....
 
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