RRP ProGuard - The Max Protection Edition
Riding through the winter months in the Pacific North West, the UK and some parts of Europe is an incredibly messy affair. Conditions that are rarely seen over a 12-month period in some parts are common day after day in these areas. It’s no wonder, then, that many of the latest wave of mudguards featuring extra coverage stem from areas with these repetitive, groundhog day-esque conditions.
Rapid Racer Product’s (RRP) latest guard is one such mudguard. The ProGuard is available in two sizes, the longer of which we’re looking at here. RRP sought to create a mudguard that offered loads of protection, was rigid and strong, and provided plenty of mud clearance. The ProGuard features 24 holes to offer a good fit with a wider range of forks, a flick to the rear portion of the guard which adds protection without making it longer, and a recess for the fork arch which provides more clearance between the guard and the tire. All of this is built into a package that tips the scales at 133 grams.
Mounting the ProGuard is a straight-forward affair, though it does require a little extra planning compared to smaller fenders like the Marsh Guard. With 24 mounting options for the fork arch, the fender requires a dry fit to establish the best setup, one that results in adequate tire clearance at each end. Once the mounting position is confirmed the locations need to have some plastic tabs removed before securing the fender with zip ties.
Try & Get Dirty
RRP’s ProGuard couldn’t have arrived at a better time, with the monsoon of biblical proportions setting in for a solid stint in the Coastal B.C. region. Moving from a Marsh Guard, which has been great and pretty much lived on the bike for years now, the difference was immediately noticeable. With no eyewear due to the amount of liquid sunshine during recent rides, it was almost humorous when realizing I was able to ride without taking advantage of the squint googles. Even steering directly into small streams on a rough dirt road resulted in no debris collecting on my face, but my behind was another story.
On the trail, the ProGuard remains in place and makes zero noise regardless of the complexity of the terrain. If the front or rear of the guard is knocked it did result in the fender being pushed askew to the tire, but in normal riding circumstances this never happened. The ProGuard was run in a 110mm axle Fox 36 and I do wonder if it were mounted to a 100mm axle fork if the issue would still exist.
After spending time on RRP’s largest ProGuard in some horrendous conditions, one can’t help but wonder how much of a difference there is between this monster and the smaller version (thankfully Cam will be testing that very shortly)? This is a serious fender and as a result, I don’t see it remaining on many bikes for those average damp days; rather, being pulled out for when conditions get really nasty.
Room For Improvement
While RRP’s ProGuard does a sensational job of shielding the rider from moisture and debris off the front wheel, the side of the fender by the fork seals seems a little overbuilt. What RRP call their Seal Shield results in a large amount of material leading from behind the fork to the fork arch. Regular Marsh Guard style fenders contain far less material in the same location and do a great job of keeping seals clean, and while a little extra material here is beneficial, the Seal Shield seems to be over the top.
That shouldn’t stop anyone from investing in a ProGuard, though, because at the end of the day it does a fantastic job of keeping water and debris away from the face. After hours of riding the mudguard in the worst conditions we’ve seen this winter, my face would regularly have little to no dirt on it, which is telling on its own. The ProGuard will remain on the bike for the rest of the winter months and into the spring but some minor customizations to the Seal Shield, to streamline it a little, will definitely be taking place.
Head to the RRP website for more on the ProGuard. mudguards.