Zeta Armour Handguard and XC Deflector Kit
by H.B.C. for webBikeWorld.com
and Accessories | wBW
| Owner Comments (Below)
Summary: The Zeta
guards and deflectors kits are of good quality and
The straight type hand guard
provides necessary clearance between all controls, a
concern with most other designs.
The kits have
met all basic requirements and look good mounted on
Now these are something we needed!
Frequent use of the Versys for
off-pavement forays has resulted in some incidents
and close calls. The right side has a couple
of battle scars, but nothing that can’t be buffed
out or filled in and touched up (winter project of
With these events in mind, a salient
observation regarding the provision of hand-guards
was made…the final straw came about when
temperatures decided to plunge and wind-chill
protection became an even higher priority.
Given the time of year, most of the
dealers did not have much in stock that we could
look at and compare, although there were lots of
dirt machines around to provide some insight into
brands, mounts, etc. Wanting to expedite
everything, a quick Internet search provided the
applicable part numbers, and a local dealer ordered
the items from Kimpex, a Canadian distributor.
Two days later we had received a
Zeta Armour Handguard (Straight) kit and a companion
kit – a set of the Zeta XC Deflectors with the
optional LED flasher strip.
Although the kit ordered was for
hollow-bar-end mounting, the Versys has spun-on
bar-ends mounted via 8mm threaded assemblies as part
of the handlebar – so a minor workaround was needed
for this installation.
Mounting the left hand side guard
was straight forward, but the front brake assembly
on the right side was going to complicate life
somewhat. Some compromises were going to be
needed for this initial fitting.
The Zeta kit is well made and well
finished, although the included hardware, with
stainless steel bolts, appears to be a bit light.
Included are two-piece clamshell brackets that fit
over the 7/8 bar and used to secure one end of the
guard to the handlebar. This bracket uses two
6mm bolts to clamp the two clamshell halves together
along with the bridge piece that brings the guard
and the clamp together.
When mounting the left hand guard,
it became apparent that the provided bolts were not
the same thread pattern as the clamshell bracket
pieces and were also a bit short. Resorting to
our metric stock on hand, a 35mm and 30 mm length
bolt was used for the front and back respectively of
each assembly. While not stainless steel, the
items used will work for the short term.
With the left side loosely
installed, attention was turned to the more
problematic right side. It was at this point
in time that the decision to pick up a small (30mm)
lightweight set of LP bar-ends proved prudent.
The stock bar-ends are quite long
and recessed to cover the bar end and given where
the right side guard had to be mounted on the
handlebar, due to the space taken up by the front
brake assembly, it was accepted that the stock
bar-ends would need to go, at least for this
Using the smaller bar-ends allowed
the far-end of the guard to extend just beyond the
front brake assembly so that it could be mated up to
the clamp bracket and bridge pieces. It is a
tight fit, especially as clearance is needed for the
rigid front brake hydraulic line housing. The
stock plastic cable retainer strap was cut away and
its plug pulled out of the handlebar- that spot was
exactly where the clamp needed to be mounted.
After fitting both sides, some
leveling was undertaken and everything was tightened
up. The sequence was: hand-guard end to bridge
pieces, clamshell clamps and finally, the bar-end
While the Zeta kit 30mm x 8mm
recessed-head bolts would be fine for a stock
bar-end installation, they were far too short for
this installation. Again resorting to the bin,
a stainless steel 45mm x 8mm bolt secured the guards
and bar-ends into the bar on each side.
Mounting the Zeta XC Deflectors was
icing on the cake. It took about 30 seconds to
mount each one up using the supplied bolts to secure
each deflector via two holes threaded into the
guards (the Zeta brand label had to be punched out
to reveal the holes). In the cool of a late
fall evening, the handiwork was admired and final
checks were made for tightness and clearances --
portable work lights to the rescue again!
Aesthetics considered, there is a
small (5mm) gap between each 125mm grip and the
bar-end itself, which would be hidden if recessed
weights were used and the replacement bolts used to
secure everything at the clamshell mounts are a bit
more visible than the kit items would be.
But overall everything mounted up
well and it all looks okay. A larger deflector
with rounded lines could be used for even better
protection and to better flow into the windscreen
and fairing lines.
Once again the age-old question,
“how do they work?” needs to be asked. They
work very well indeed.
The difference in wind protection,
with or without the Givi shield, is remarkable.
At highway speeds wind-chill effects are almost
negligible: the same gloves that were border-line
for keeping the fingers relatively comfortable are
now quite adequate. Both the Alpinestars and
the Olympia 4150 Gore-Tex gloves are comfortable for
prolonged periods of time behind the guards, and
without using the heated grips.
As mounted, the guards and bar-end
combination results in virtually no change to the
overall width of the handlebar assembly, but the
deflectors do create a heavier or bulkier look from
However, the positives far outweigh
the negatives. Riding at and above highway
speeds with the windscreen and the deflectors doing
their job, and the handgrips pumping out heat, the
whole cockpit area becomes a far warmer, and much
more inviting environ.
Overall, the whole assembly provides
a more rugged, adventure-touring look, which was one
of the objectives. The deflectors are easily
removed for warmer weather and could easily be
packed for travel and use if inclement weather is
encountered. The guards on the other hand will
provide permanent protection during all riding,
especially in event of a spill.
Although there was concern over
using a smaller and lighter bar-end, it would appear
to have been unfounded. Only a very slight
increase in vibration is evident and then only below
4,000 rpm. Above that, there is no difference
whatsoever – the Versys really is a smooth machine.
An Acerbis Multiplo / Multiconcept
handguard it was ordered, but it cannot be used as
the guard component (curved style) is too short and
does not provide enough clearance for the levers and
the hands. With all the accessory kits on the
market, other options should be available – our
The Zeta hand guard kit contains well made pieces
that are easily fitted. The straight guard
component used provides clearance for all stock
pieces, especially control levers. Many other
guards, straight or curved, do not provide adequate
clearance for standard controls, as they are
designed for shorter motocross assemblies.
Although having a relatively small
frontal area, the deflectors are quite effective and
add a distinctive adventure touring look to the
The hardware could be a bit heavier
and hopefully the bolts found in our kits are not
typical for all Zeta kits.
Test and Riding Environment
Handguards and Zeta Deflector Kit
(Canada and U.S.A.) via dealers and resellers. This kit was
purchased from the
Ottawa Goodtime Centre.
Suggested Retail Price: Handguards - $71.95 CAD.
Deflector kit with LED light strips - $59.95 CAD.
|Colours: Handguards in
Black or Silver. Deflectors available in blue, green,
yellow, orange, red and of course, black.
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From "T.C." (5/10): " I am seeking to fit
such a product my Versys '07 model. But unsure what you fitted,
are they standard or did you fit a certain size, etc?
I followed link to Kimpex whom you got them from but found their
search facility for the item somewhat fiddly and couldn't find
the item, gave up. We can get Zeta here in the UK but
asked a few times & shops not sure?
Can you please advise on the sizing etc. of fitted hand guards.
Also if you could provide the product codes or sizing codes that
we be great."
HBC's Reply: The zeta product line has changed, so
the information below is based on both the original installation
and what I now see on the website, so here goes:
The original Zeta its installed on the Versys were the Armor
Handguard Straight Kit and the Zeta XC Deflector Kit which are
small LED light strips that got mounted to the plastic protector
shields (deflectors) that were part of the original kit.
The Zeta products have undergone change in three years, but I
found the relevant information, listed below, on the
Zeta Racing site. The primary UK distributor is listed
a. Armor Hand Hards, Straight, aluminum,
Black, ZE72-0011 for 22.2mm (7/8") bars, they are available
in Titanium as well.
b. The kit should include a set of the clamps (middle)
length, ZE71-1712 for 22.2mm bars, but in some instances or
if more clearance is desired or needed along the bar, there
is a replacement kit: Replacement Clamp (long), for 22.2mm
bars, ZE71-1713 listed.
c. The original equipment bars have threaded inserts, so you
just need longer bolts (stainless steel or alloy if
available) to fit the guards, as identified in the article.
If you have replaced the original equipment bars, optional
bar end adapters (included in the original kit I used) are
available as part number ZE74-0910
d. It seems the deflector shields are now sold separately.
The basic XC Protector, Black, ZE72-3106 is listed, along
with other colours. Another kit, the DC Flasher
Protector has the LED strip fitted and its part number is
ZE72-3406 (this is basically what was used on my Versys,
although it was packaged differently at the time).
Zeta now lists Orange and Smoke coloured replacement flasher
strips as well.
A3. I hope the information provided in A2 above does the trick.
Regarding specific suppliers in the UK, there seem to be a few
suppliers, some listed on various forums, especially those
related to the Versys.
From "D" (12/08): "First of all my
compliments with your great site! I got some great ideas and
inspiration from it.
For my Versys I will buy some handguards, and I
wonder about the fitting challenge you had: How did you
solve the fact that the Versys has spun-on bar-ends? Did
you make it hollow, or what exactly did you do?"
Author's Response: "Most
after market handguard kits use either a hollow-bar-end mounting
or a bolt-on, like the Zeta units do. Some people actually
do drill out the bars to make a hollow fit, but this takes time
and effort, and precludes re-installing the original equipment
at some point in the future.
I would recommend using handguards that let you
use a longer 8mm bolt to attach the handguard frame and bar-end
weight to the handlebar directly. Depending on whether the
stock bar-end weights or a shorter item is used, the actual
length of this bolt will vary.
For my installation I used an 8mm x 45mm
stainless steel bolt with an Allen key head, although a 8mm
Philips head machine screw will work as well (which is what many
Japanese manufacturers use anyway for bar-end weights).
For what is worth, most handguard kits, even
those that use a hollow-end expansion pressure-fit component can
be adapted to use a straight bolt mount using the stock 8mm