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hey all, I am new to forum, it was suggested I make a intro post. hopefully I can also include my question in it as well.

Background, I have always been fond of Yamaha, I grew up with a banshee. lived in south florida, however we would make trips to Sebring florida to ride. Sebring is covered with sand trails and made great cushioned landings when getting air on jumps. once I was a teenager, my brother and I bought a Honda rancher. we lived just before the keys, and east glades swamp was one of the coolest places I used to ride. they would have parties on weekends there and swamp buggies and pickups modified like monster trucks would all gather and go mudding, get stuck, get pulled out, etc. if you wanna see a clip from what the hump looks like in east glades, check out this video(might want to hit mute everytime the girls start singing, they are so annoying, lol). Link : goo.gl/NDmJAG

Anyway, fast forward I have been living in Erie PA for the past 12 years. I recently bought a 02' Honda rancher with a plow for $600 to do driveway at my new house(huge driveway, and not sure if you are familiar with Erie, PA, but we top the charts almost every year for snow fall. I just recently decided to trade up, I have always been fond of Yamaha since I was a kid(dirt bikes, 4 wheelers, even motorcycles). I found an 03 Kodiak 450, and for the price I couldn't turn it down. the Kodiak for only being a year newer(and from what I remember, the 03 ranchers didn't change much) is like night and day with design and features. the Kodiak is built to last, and even just riding around 4wd is not even closed to being matched by the rancher. well, I was able to find a buyer for my rancher, 500$(not bad since I have had it for 3 years and am keeping the plow). I ripped the plow off rancher last night, and put Kodiak up on lift to see what I needed for the mounting plate to be installed. I removed the factory skid plate from Kodiak, and verified I was not able to re-use the mount plate from Honda. I ordered a mount plate seen here-Link: goo.gl/bzw8jE for the Kodiak, however I had a question about installation. is it possible to keep the factory skid on when installing a center mount system? I don't mind taking mounts off every season and swapping for the skid, however I noticed the front frame rails were open ended and exposed when the skid is removed. I can always cap them off to prevent snow buildup/rust, but figured I would see if anyone here has installed a similar center mount and left skid in place(plus it would save me time every year if I just left mount in place instead of swapping every spring/winter). where I live now there aren't any places I have seen that get the kind of mud I was used to in florida, if there was I would not want to leave plow mount on, as in my experience in deep mud a metal skid plate will act a a suction cup in mud. I usually just take quad trail riding local(mainly dirt/woods/minor mud) or to alleghaney forest trails(again minimal mud, maybe 1-2 feet deep at most). so if I can find a way to leave skid and mount plate in place year round, I will be greatful.


anyway, thanks for your time, and I can say I will stay Yamaha for life. 2 more years when my oldest leaves for college, I think I will treat myself with a side by side.
 

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I do not know if this helps but I leave the metal plate on year round in the past, makes a pretty good skid plate and have never bent the two brackets yet. Even with the OEM plastic skids stuff gets in there. Mud always finds a way. This time of year there is no pressure washing the frame when at freezing but unlike Erie ( and you know all the jokes about that place) they do use lots of salt so maybe try to clean the frame whenever you can.


Going from Florida to Erie is quite change in weather conditions.
 

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Welcome to GC from Maine! I'm no help on this one, I pay a young fella to plow my yard with his 3/4 ton pickup!
 

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Welcome from Colorado.
The instructions for the new mount will probably answer your questions, listing mods needed to keep the skid in place with the mount.
 

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Welcome 2 GC.
 

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My Yam 450 EPS did not come with a skidplate so the mounting plate makes up for it quite well. i also have never bent the pin brackets underneath. Well worth the hundred I spent on it. I use a manual lever (how tough is THAT?) and as I write I'm preparing to head out before dark (if the wind goes down) and start plowing my gravel drive with the hidden (buried) mailbox. Will definitley be out tomorrow to finish the job. Had 50+ winds and 10 inches of snow today. C'mon spring! BTW - welcome to GC!
 
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