Thanks planalp, I've seen the design for it too, in Eagle Plains, Yukon. Two or three Goldwing riders bought new KLRs for their trip to the gravel roads we were on. Each had a 1/2" thick rubber-and-fiber mat zip-tied to the crash bars. Cut a fan belt and you see the same construction, but these were mats. The mats went from the radiator/bottle down and back a bit under the water pump/ balancer shaft. Each bike must have gained 10Lb (22 kg) from that single addition. But they were accustomed to more weight than that.
Aluminum would help. Or titanium. Or how about an ultrasonic resonator that sweeps frequency to keep it optimized for the type of clay being splashed.
I have started to wonder if I can weld a double-layer exhaust like many cruisers -- the outer pipe would remain below the heat required to fire the clay. Half seriously.
I have honestly thought of painting the clay, but even though it is tenactious, it will occasionally flake off. When that happens I'd have mostly black but at different thicknesses. Jeff and Brian seem to know about exhaust issues that I don't. What DOES happen with, for example, I wrapped (insulated) my header? Supposed to keep the exhaust hotter and moving faster and increase flow. No? I don't especially like the look of wrapped exhaust, but the look of rust-colored exhaust isn't all that appealing either.
The only way to clean this up is to take the heat shield off. I hate 6mm bolts in corroding locations. I coated them liberally with anti-sieze last year and one came out while the other twisted off. Both twisted off last year and I can drill accurately enough to preserve the 6mm threads. This year I don't expect to splash as much calcium chloride on the bike.
I appreciate the offer of a stainless head pipe. Just two months ago I joined in a thread about mufflers. The stock setup is going for my early season rides but I may replace it all IF I can find something quiet. Right now I still have a driveway that is 700 feet of ice. I look forward to the day when I can make a 700-foot mud rut down my driveway to repair when I get home. With the temperatures this year I'll have a long mud season.