Modified bars and busted bones...

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Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  NTBill on Fri 03 Jan 2014, 11:38 pm

I've never liked the way the GSX1250 bars are designed to assume that your arms come out of your chest  No  No , so over the Chrissy break I modified the stock bars by halving the back bend and also added thicker grips. The bike felt much better with the wider flatter bars and new grips, and tight cornering now seems way more predictable and easier.

Then on New Year's Eve I decided it was well overdue for plugs and air filter so did that along with checking the TPS and balanced throttle bodies (3rd time in 27,000kms - not needed this time round, they were all good).

While the fairings were off, I gave the bike a good tub. It was as clean as new and purring for the new year.

Rode to work today, pulled in to park at 7.30am like I have a bazillion times before, put down the foot backing in to park, hit a slippery patch on the road with the boot (didn't look, big mistake) and down we went. Milliseconds seemed like an eternity as I imagined the bitumen crushed faring, busted levers and pushed in indicator.... pale 
However.....bike only suffered a very minor scuff on the lower left side of the gear case in conjunction with a minor scuff on the left hand bar end weight.  cheers Me not so good. Turns out I suffered a busted shoulder.
There was no one around to help (this is Darwin) so still managed to lift her upright with a wounded wing. Adrenaline is a wonderful thing.

Point of the post is that the slightly wider bars obviously protected that FA faring beatufully in this dumb unplanned drop.
Time taken to do the bar mod was about 1 hour including removal, bend, measure, bend, re-assemble. Total materials required was one piece of longish pipe, one solid vice and bench, split poly pipe to protect the bar, set of vernier calipers or steel rule, and one good mate to help.  

I'm going to miss riding for the next few weeks.....ill be a passenger in one of those 4 wheeled contraptions Sleep

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  paul on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 12:54 am

Damn , that's bad news mate , heal soon .

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  Ewok1958 on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 7:37 am

Glad the bar mod worked out, but sorry to hear of the unexpected put down and resulting injury.  Good outcome with the bars but bad luck for you.   Rolling Eyes
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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  Bosco15 on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 7:44 am

Sad to hear about your shoulder injury, Bill. I do hope that you heal up well and soon. 
I've had similar situation,  minus the drop.  I managed to save it, but darn near snapped my groin doing so. Time does stretch out when you're fighting gravity. 
Fantastic to hear that the new mod saved the big girl. Well done.

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  gus on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 8:13 am

Love it (not the shoulder bit ) Aussie engineering at its best .If it doesn't fit ,hit it till it does ,
or bend it ..
I had to tweak a t\clamp once a similar way ,every one turned into a metal expert and told
me I will die .
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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  madmax on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 8:20 am

Sorry to hear about your shoulder, get well soon.

Interesting to hear how you bent the bars. I wouldn't have thought they could be bent so easily without heat.

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  kelpie on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 9:06 am

@NTBill wrote:I've never liked the way the GSX1250 bars are designed to assume that your arms come out of your chest  No  No , so over the Chrissy break I modified the stock bars by halving the back bend and also added thicker grips. The bike felt much better with the wider flatter bars and new grips, and tight cornering now seems way more predictable and easier.

Sorry to hear about the busted shoulder but interested in your modifications to the bars. I also felt that they weren't quite right but in the opposite way.
Being what I call normal height (165cm) and average build (you refer to yourself in this way when everyone else is taller than you), I felt right from day 1 that the bars were too wide being made for people 6' 6'' and built like a gorilla.

So, not long after getting my GSX I cut 20mm off each end of the bars and moved the grips & brake/clutch controls in closer to the first bend. And the result was for me at least was a bike that felt more nimble & stable. Rather than one that felt like riding a big trailie.

Anyway, get well soon.
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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  Hammy on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 9:15 am

Bad luck Bill.  Good mod though.  Hope the shoulder mends fast.
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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  NTBill on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 10:13 am

@gus wrote:Love it (not the shoulder bit ) Aussie engineering at its best .If it doesn't fit ,hit it till it does ,
or bend it ..
I had to tweak a t\clamp once a similar way ,every one turned into a metal expert and told
me I will die .

Yes some people will no doubt say that the metallurgy gods will frown and the sky will fall, however I'm a fitter / turner by trade and went on and got me qualified as a mechanical engineer many many moons ago.  In a previous life I worked in a mechanical destructive testing environment for 15 years (at NT Uni) with lots of fun testing machines to tear metal apart under controlled measured conditions. Doesn't make me an expert by any means but I'm sick of being controlled by the consumer gods, and all things considered, gotta remember these bikes are built to a price. The bars aren't made from complex high strength alloys like some bikes (particularly dirt bikes).

The amount of change to the bend only equates to a few degrees to obtain the change and while cold working can change the stress dynamics within the metal it can also marginally increase the tensile strength of lower carbon steels (shifts the yield point up a tad). There's not even enough change of angle doing this mod to affect the chrome (which is brittle), and the change (for me at least) was a big improvement.

I bit the bullet after swapping bikes on a long ride the other day. My friend (riding a Beemer R1200GS) said after swapping to my Bandit (with original bend in bars) he had forgotten how uncomfortable the standard bar bend had made his wrists feel (he once owned a Bandit himself that he did a lap around oz on). On that same ride he had done the same thing after getting sore wrists and shoulders on day 2.

 It was a light bulb moment for me ( we're similar height) so I did same. Easy, nothing to lose.  The unplanned drop yesterday didn't shift the bars one iota and the mod saved a lot more damage to other bits of the bike.
Gotta give stuff a go I reckon, and I like and respect the way you're not afraid to try new ways of solving problems Gus - keep solving I say Very Happy . I've yet to remove the secondaries, but that's happening as soon as I get me a new screw driver and my shoulder improves. This bike just gets better and better.

BTW, the scrap pipe I used was a bit of 25mm NB gal tube, 800mm long, with a wall thickness around 4.0mm (33mm OD). Important to use some split12 mm poly pipe (located to protect bar makes a snug fit (ie no point load to damage or kink the bar) Solid vice and bench required, no heat (didn't want to affect chrome). sunny

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  stu on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 3:59 pm

@NTBill wrote:
 in this dumb unplanned drop.

there are planned drops???????

I dropped my other bike in my friends driveway this morning loading it up. At least you aren't alone in this unfortunate behaviour!

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double post.

Post  Bosco15 on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 4:16 pm

Bugger.  Bloody mobile devices.

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  2wheelsagain on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 4:33 pm

@Bosco15 wrote:Bugger.  Bloody mobile devices.

Before anyone replies you can delete the double post Wink

Bad luck Bill you have joined a very large family who have had a stationary drop. Don't sweat it. Hope you heal quickly.

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  Bosco15 on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 5:06 pm

Two wheels, you've just reminded me of the very first bike I owned. 
Brand new to riding, fresh off the press learners permit in hand, I bought an old clunker XS250. Heavy as buggery and not quite road legal (bald tyres etc) I learnt to ride or should I say learnt how to operate the basic functions of a motorcycle on the way home, closely followed by a car full of my teenage mates laughing at my wobbly efforts.  
I made it home safely and rode into the open garage. Killed the motor. Shaking with adrenaline,  I got off my bike and over she went. Lesson one in parking a motorcycle safely,  side stand must be down before you alight.  Embarassed

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  2wheelsagain on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 5:15 pm

My Bandits stationary drop wasn't even by me!
My now ex wife decided to move it with the steering still locked.  Rolling Eyes   Evil or Very Mad 

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  Mpottsy on Sat 04 Jan 2014, 11:38 pm

I dropped mine the other day was pushing it up onto the bike lift in the garage to carry out some mods. Bike just started to fall away from me and with nothing else i could do i had to let it drop. Bars ended up slightly twisted which made riding a little strange as i kept wanting to bring my hands parallel. Fitted a new set of Renthal Ultra lows which I picked up from MCAS real cheap ($59 the price on the bar code was wrong  Very Happy ) and the bike now feels great again much more comfortable.

I will put up a separate post about the christmas toy fittings. I have been busy.

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  Jimcoleman on Sun 05 Jan 2014, 7:20 am

@2wheelsagain wrote:My Bandits stationary drop wasn't even by me!
My now ex wife decided to move it with the steering still locked.  Rolling Eyes   Evil or Very Mad 



So is that why she is your ex wife,
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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  glenby on Sun 05 Jan 2014, 5:27 pm

that's a bummer on the drop. best wishes for the shoulder.
I have been lucky with the bandit *fingas crossed* droped the bmw RT a few times fully loaded.
Shouldnt be taking a bike fully loaded up dirt tracks, rocks and sandy roads (but how else do you get to see aus?).

With the bandit bars, for me it depends on the day and the riding. I s'pose my only real gripe with them is that you cant see a thing out of the mirrors (naked bike).
perhaps a stiffer pair would help.
1/2" closer and/or taller would be great most days but when throwing it through the twisties, you lean into the bike and they are right.
other days, a little straighter to ease wrists etc.

I am 170cm tall, so it seems a reasonable fit, probably best for me to leave them how they are.

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Re: Modified bars and busted bones...

Post  Truck bandit on Mon 06 Jan 2014, 7:27 am

Reading your post was  bit of De ja Vue for me and putting the Bandit down. Along with your shoulder, my Hip came out worse than the bike. All I got was scratched mirror and blinker and scuffed up the OGGY knob on the left hand side.
In contrast though, I feel as though the time skipped from me being on the bike to being on my back beside the bike without even knowing what had happened.
Its funny how time can change depending on how we are percieving it, be it faster or slower.
Good luck with your shoulder and let time help in your recovery, don't try to push it too hard too early.

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