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Discussion Starter #1
I haven't seen any threads lately about skid plates for the Renegade Trailhawk.

We've got a 2021 Trailhawk (still) on order, which we intend to use quite a bit for driving to backpacking trailheads over primitive unpaved roads here in the Rockies. No Moab rock-crawling, but still need some protection.

Two things concern me about he OEM skid plate -- the fact that it's open in the center, and that you have to drop the heavy plate in order to reach the oil filter and drain plug.

Does anyone have any experience with the Valkyrie skid plate?

Front Skid Plate - Valkyrie Off Road Gear

2396350121


Not real cheap, but gives full coverage and I like the access to the filter and drain...

Also, any advantages to black powder-coat vs. "raw"?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I am excited to see what people have to say. I watched a few YT videos on install and reviews for this skid plate.
OK, do you have some YouTube links? I see other Valkyrie products, and other skid plates. But not Valkyrie front skid plates...
 

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OK, do you have some YouTube links? I see other Valkyrie products, and other skid plates. But not Valkyrie front skid plates...
I read reviews from another forum (toasterjeep) but you're right about YT. I watched the driveshaft/rear skid plate install for the Valkyrie and the American Trails for the front skid plate install because I was trying to compare the two product lines overall. I don't want to mix and match lol. My bad. I've been knee deep in reviews and starting to mix them up while putting my wish list together.

2396350122
 

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Discussion Starter #5
👍

Or if anyone has recommendations for any other aftermarket skid plate with access to the filter and drain, that would be great too...
 

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Note that the OEM skid plate has an opening for the exhaust pipe. I can't comment on how any aftermarket skid plate fits or if you lose any ground clearance.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Note that the OEM skid plate has an opening for the exhaust pipe. I can't comment ... if you lose any ground clearance.
That's a good point. Protecting the exhaust is one reason why I'm asking about this skid plate. But if the exhaust is protected, ground clearance would be at least a bit reduced.

So question is, how much ground clearance is lost?
 

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We have had no problem with the stock plate we do water, sand & mud. Just clean up is a PIA!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
We have had no problem with the stock plate we do water, sand & mud. Just clean up is a PIA!
Good to hear that, though I'm more concerned about rocks and ground clearance. Last year I was a couple lateral inches from destroying the oil pan on my wife's VW Jetta, taking the car on a road in the remote mountains that we really shouldn't have. But that has a lot less ground clearance.

But a bigger concern is accessing the oil filter and drain. On our two VWs, even with their sedan ground clearances, I'm able to access the filter and drain just by scooching under the cars from the front, without raising them or even necessarily using ramps. The Jetta has a polypropylene belly pan that's light enough, but it's still a hassle getting to all the bolts.

I'd like to similarly do oil changes on the Renegade, which should be good with its higher ground clearance (particularly the Trailhawk's). But I really don't want to be struggling with the heavy steel skid plate each time...
 

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Another option would be to take the OEM skid plate to a metal shop and have them cut an access hole to the drain plug and add a removeable panel. I believe I saw someone on here did this instead of spending the cash on aftermarket. I take my TH to my regular oil change place and make them deal with removing the skid plate. It's easy to know if they've changed the filter because you can hear them cussing about having to remove it!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Another option would be to take the OEM skid plate to a metal shop and have them cut an access hole to the drain plug and add a removeable panel.
Yeah, I've heard of that being done too. With cutting and welding, it might not be a lot cheaper than aftermarket...

If a shop is cussing about removing the skid plate -- considering they probably put the vehicle up on a lift -- then I'm not looking forward to it at all...
 

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I take my TH to my regular oil change place and make them deal with removing the skid plate. It's easy to know if they've changed the filter because you can hear them cussing about having to remove it!
You're devious, JustinC1431. Just devious. Maybe that is part of the reason why the mechanic I spoke to the other day at the dealership said he hates working on these Renegades lol. I have a laundry list of work I have to do to my TH and based on what everyone keeps saying, I am not looking forward to it lol.
 

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I haven't seen any threads lately about skid plates for the Renegade Trailhawk.

We've got a 2021 Trailhawk (still) on order, which we intend to use quite a bit for driving to backpacking trailheads over primitive unpaved roads here in the Rockies. No Moab rock-crawling, but still need some protection.

Two things concern me about he OEM skid plate -- the fact that it's open in the center, and that you have to drop the heavy plate in order to reach the oil filter and drain plug.

Does anyone have any experience with the Valkyrie skid plate?

Front Skid Plate - Valkyrie Off Road Gear

View attachment 2396350121

Not real cheap, but gives full coverage and I like the access to the filter and drain...

Also, any advantages to black powder-coat vs. "raw"?
If you’re in the rust belt like I am, you’ll definitely want it powder coated. Or at least paint it yourself with rubberized undercoating (which would probably save you quite a bit of cash) so you’re not left with a pile of rust dust.
 

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You're devious, JustinC1431. Just devious. Maybe that is part of the reason why the mechanic I spoke to the other day at the dealership said he hates working on these Renegades lol. I have a laundry list of work I have to do to my TH and based on what everyone keeps saying, I am not looking forward to it lol.
I’m really looking forward to wrenching on this Jeep compared to my rusty ‘07 Yukon. Whenever I take the impact wrench to it I get a shower of pieces of rust. I always have to remember to close my eyes and take a deep breath before hand. 😂.
 

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You're devious, JustinC1431. Just devious. Maybe that is part of the reason why the mechanic I spoke to the other day at the dealership said he hates working on these Renegades lol. I have a laundry list of work I have to do to my TH and based on what everyone keeps saying, I am not looking forward to it lol.
I actually printed an 11"x17" sheet with callouts for the bolts and sizes for removing the skid plate that I bring to my oil changes. Just in case they are having issues figuring out what size torx and such to use. They usually refuse to look at it, but at least I tried to help...


If a shop is cussing about removing the skid plate -- considering they probably put the vehicle up on a lift -- then I'm not looking forward to it at all...
Any vehicle would go up on a lift or park over a mechanics pit for an oil change. It's just easier to work on a vehicle that way, skid plate or not.
 

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I’m really looking forward to wrenching on this Jeep compared to my rusty ‘07 Yukon. Whenever I take the impact wrench to it I get a shower of pieces of rust. I always have to remember to close my eyes and take a deep breath before hand. 😂.
yummmmy, rust snacks 😜. I'm looking to get the work finished, & want to get pass the finish line on this one lol. Just looking at this renegade in all of its sub-compact cuteness, I see more difficult access, breaking plastic, knocking my head, and lots of cursing in my barely capable future. I also have the added challenge of a toddler "helper," so I'm really dreading doing anything under this Renegade. Some of the skid plates look heavy. I'm in love with the valkyrie on the Valkyrie product line. I see people are saying their skid plate combo is overkill, but supposedly, they have amazing customer service, and I'm all about that.

I actually printed an 11"x17" sheet with callouts for the bolts and sizes for removing the skid plate that I bring to my oil changes.
Okay, I take it back. That's awesome lol If they don't want to look, the fuss and frustration is all on them lol
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Any vehicle would go up on a lift or park over a mechanics pit for an oil change. It's just easier to work on a vehicle that way, skid plate or not.
Yeah. When I do oil changes on our VWs in the garage, I do have ramps -- but they still freak me out (having driven off of one once), and I much prefer to do oil changes with the cars on the ground. Plenty of ground clearance for that with the Jetta; barely enough with the GLI.

I just think wrestling with the OEM skid plate each time would be tough...

As far as rust, we're pretty dry here humidity-wise in Colorado Springs. Spraying "raw" steel with a rubberized paint would probably help too, until it got inevitably scratched. Not sure how much better the powder-coated option would hold up...
 
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