Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Knoxville, Tennessee
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
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I've given mine a good look and closing it up doesn't look like a good option. If high grass is the issue, every edge on the underside becomes a thresher. Even if you kept all the stems out, any ripe seeds will pile up in that "box" in which the engine sits. Cleaning after a ride would really be tough--with more "closing in" of things. You also have to consider that to close it in would bring temperatures even higher in that area.
I'm not an engineer (or even close), but it looks like closing things up more could possibly cause issues with a plastic fuel tank being in close proximity on the right side, and also raise engine temps to the point it could need a larger radiator--expensive fixes.
I'm going to take a wild guess, based upon the premise that nothing in that compartment is hot enough to ignite dry grass: except the exhaust system. The fix will be to add shielding around the exhaust manifold--extending back to where it goes into the muffler. It's much higher at that point, so should be clear of the area of buildup.
I replaced the stock exhaust on my old TRX-300 a few years ago. I put a Cobra system on it. The only problem was, it didn't have the heat shield that the OEM exhaust had. Got really hot on the inside of my right leg. I cured it up by using header wrap--sent all that heat out the back of the pipe. Maybe that approach would work here.
That's just my opinion. I could be wrong...