WHAT IS IT? Twin Air radiator sleeves are used to keep
mud and debris from blocking much-needed air to your
WHAT’S IT COST? $44.95.
www.twinair.com or (800) 749-2890.
WHAT STANDS OUT? Here’s a list of things that stand
out with the Twin Air KTM radiator sleeves.
(1) Concept. Back in the golden oldie days, when two-strokes roamed the earth at will, savvy two-stroke riders
would attach a section of wire mesh across the downtubes
of their bikes to knock down mud before it could clog the
fins of their air-cooled engines. The mud would stick to the
wire mesh and then vibrate off. Twin Air obviously has
some old moto soldiers in its design department, because
that is exactly what Twin Air radiator sleeves do—except
for radiators instead of cylinder fins.
( 2) Mounting. The Twin Air radiator sleeves are easy
to mount. On a KTM 450SXF, the drill is simple: First,
remove the four bolts from the radiator louvers and slide
the Twin Air sleeves over the louvers. Second, align the
pre-punched holes in the sleeves with the stock bolt holes
before reinstalling the louvers. Third, when mounting the
louvers back on your bike, hand-tighten all the bolts a few
threads so that the soft material of the Twin Air sleeves
does not bunch up around the bolts when they are tightened. Once all the bolts and sleeves are in place, tighten
the louver bolts.
( 3) Performance. The radiator sleeves did not disap-
point. They held up well under all the conditions we threw
at them. Not only did they help keep debris and mud out
of the radiators, they also made for easy cleanup at the
races. There was no need to pick at the radiator louvers or
scrape for mud, which could potentially damage the radi-
ator fins. After long test days in the hot sun, we did not
lose any coolant due to the bike overheating with them
installed. We rode with the sleeves on our test bikes for
four months. At the end of the test, the radiator fins were
in great shape. They didn’t have any of the normal dents
and bent-over fins.
( 4) Appearance. Since the radiators are hidden behind
the side shrouds, the Twin Air radiator sleeves didn’t hurt
the cosmetic appeal of the bike.
( 5) Durability. Twin Air radiator sleeves have been
tested on the almost-always-muddy European Grand Prix
circuit since 2014. As for the MXA wrecking crew, our
SoCal home base isn’t known for its rainfall; however, we
spend several days a week testing at seriously over-watered tracks and occasionally find actual mud during our
rainy season (all three days of it). During our test period
with the Twin Air radiator sleeves, we went looking for
mud wherever we could find it and made lots of riders
around us angry with our penchant for hitting every mud
hole on the track.
( 6) Material. We had no issues with the spun-glass
yarn material that Twin Air uses. Did you think they would
use chicken wire like back in 1974? The Twin Air radiator
sleeves are made from a nylon-coated, glass yarn designed
to shed mud and dirt before it builds up. You could jer-ry-rig pantyhose or wire mesh to save money, but it won’t
work as well as the Twin Air product—or last as long. We
put them on and forgot them.
WHAT’S THE SQUAWK? Two quibbles: (1) The price
is on the high side. ( 2) The color of the glass yarn became
dull and faded over time.
If your racing environment is rainy, muddy
TWIN AIR RADIATOR SLEEVES
or over-watered, you will find the Twin Air
radiator sleeves invaluable. Radiators only
work if air flows through them. Twin Air can
make that happen in the worst of conditions.
MXA TEAM TESTED