Cyclesmiths Banana Boards…

To add to the blacked out theme I’ve been looking for… blacked out floor boards. The ones that kept popping up were the Cyclesmiths Banana Board series. I liked the idea of having the extra foot room. You almost don’t need pegs on a highway bar the way you can stretch out your legs. The pegs do offer more of an elevation and change in leg position and if you’re wearing baggy leg jeans you know you’ll be looking like you have shorts on the freeway.

I removed the old floor boards with no issues but when trying install the banana boards the stock bolts would not go in. I had to use a round file and remove some of the powder coat finish to get them to pass through. Once that was taken care of the floorboard rear mount fit as expected when installing the front bolt I noticed there was larger “gap” It turns out the rear has a lip or dimple around the bolt hole. This allows the bracket to fit snug. The front bracket does not have this so there is “slop”. Each board side had to be filed and had a front bracket gap.

One thing about the left side floor board. It’s hell of close to the primary cover!! The rear of the board is close I don’t think it will tilt upwards much if needed to be on a tight curve. I’ve left an email to Cyclesmiths support, I would like confirmation this is normal and maybe a couple of photo examples from a same year sled. I don’t want to add extenders as I like the boards close to the frame and I was assured prior to purchase this was a drop in replacement and no other modification would be required.

Hopefully I’ll get a response soon. Directly below is heck of blurry stock floor board…

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Sort of the same angle view with the Cyclesmiths floorboard installed
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IMG_6339Below is a close up of the left side floorboard. You can see how damn close the rear of the board is to the stock primary case cover.

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After looking at the photos, I can I’m going to have to do something with the rear footpegs as they stick out like a sore thumb…

 

Damn Harley Davidson Cable! – (maybe)

This is an ongoing rant and investigation. When I had my 16″ Malo’s installed my mechanic ordered the HD clutch cable. This seemed to work out fine until the outside ambient air became hot. When I’m saying hot it’s really warm for Northern California weather. Temperature ranged between 85-90F degrees.

During the hot temperature the clutch would have too much play and it I wasn’t able to find neutral like normal and the clutch wouldn’t completely disengage. My mechanic had taken apart my whole clutch assembly to check out the plates for damage and found nothing. It was decided that maybe a bad cable was reason.

After re-installing another HD cable the problem occurred again at hot temperatures. This was the second cable and once again the clutch basket was town into to see if there were any worn parts. Nothing again.

The third time we used a different brand clutch cable and so far at hot temperature the clutch does not develop a slack and I’m able to engage or disengage the clutch like normal. The HD cable seemed move and become “soft” when the temperature rose almost as if the outer shielding became loose.

I’m still testing out the newer clutch cable and will see if it has any negative effects at temperatures over 100F.

Primary cover, derby powder coat…

I needed to start working on the left side of the sled to balance it out more. I had my primary cover and derby cover powder coated two different colors. I chose to make the larger piece a satin flat black while the derby cover done with gloss.

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IMG_6043 While powder coat was being done I had my clutch checked out even though mileage was still low at 6500 miles. Even though I have the seven year warranty my one year was coming up so I figured if something was defective it’s better to get it taken care of sooner than later.

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HID upgrade..

A couple of buds I ride with changed out their stock Roadglide bulbs with HID’s. I ordered a set from the company located in Elk Grove, CA. I have to say they are a huge difference in visibility for both the rider and oncoming traffic. I’m hoping they are robust enough to withstand the shakes and bounces of my lowered front end.

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Modules mounted on top of the radio to keep everything clean and out of the way. IMG_6044

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I chose the 6000K temperature model. It has the bright white light I was looking for. I think any higher it starts to have too much of a bluish tint.

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Highway pegs…

I’ve been looking for a set of gloss black highway pegs that would color match my powder coated highway bars. I went with the Arlen Ness Slot Track foot pegs mounted on the HD short adjustable mounts. This particular configuration allows several positions for optimum riding comfort.

The reason I selected this particular peg model it is part of the long term theme I’m going with. If you’re wondering what the package of chrome bolts are going to be used for, so am I. I was thinking I needed the bolts to mount the pegs. As it turns out the pegs already have a bolt along with the proper shim for a snug fit.

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Buky Bars Malo’s Installed…

I’ve put about 400 miles the last few days and I can say I made the right decision going with the 16″ Buky Bars Malo’s rather than the 14″ I had originally ordered. The riding position is perfect for my height and once my rider backrest comes in next week I’ll be closer to the comfort ride I’m seeking. I’m still researching highway pegs and floor boards before I make that purchase.
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Changing the grips out… again!

I’m going to be replacing my sleds hand grips for the 3rd time since I’m changing out my ape hangers to the 16″ Buky Bar Malo model. After the stock grips I had the Arlen Ness grips called the “Ring Leader Black”. It was comfortable but the one thing that bugged me was that it resembled the popular Kuryakyn ISO grips. This time around I’m going with the “Slot Track Grips” these match up with my Sinister Wheels better and later on I plan purchasing the various derby covers that support this theme.

I had a few options for the deep cut finish and chose one that didn’t take away too much from the finish of the Buky Bars Malo.

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Replacing apes…

I wrote earlier in this blog that you sometimes justify and defend the parts you select for your sled because you’ve already committed money and time. I’d like to think I do my footwork and research before deciding on a purchase. In the case of my Roadglide’s handlebars I made a costly mistake.

I originally thought the Yaffe’s Monkey Bars 10″ model would be tall enough for my height and riding position. Both my VTX1800R and Roadking had my arms at shoulder height. In the case of my 2003 Roadking my arms were slightly higher then my shoulders with the 16″ Wild  Ones.

The Yaffe’s are nice looking bars but after a couple hours of riding the lower position and had me leaning forward too much. After REALLY researching the internet for ape hanger type handlebars the company Buky Bars kept coming up within the Roadglide community.

After checking out the different sleds with Buky Bars and other manufacturers I started to narrow down my choices and bar height. I originally thought I’d go from 10″ bars to 14″ and call it good. After reading posts by other Roadglide owners I started to see a trend in comments, most of them had wished they’ve gone with the 16″ height. I ordered the 16″ model..

When I received my Buky Bars Malo, 1.5″, black powder coated, meat hook I did a mock up on the Roadglide and compared to the existing Yaffe’s bars. It seems to me that 16″ on a Roadglide will not be the same as 16″ on a Roadking. The only real way to explain is by comparing my arm position using both motorcycles. On the Roadglide my arm position is about 2″ lower than on the Roadking. So in a nutshell if you want to ride high go for an additional 2″.

As it turns out I wasn’t able to save the Arlen Ness grips I had installed on the Yaffe’s. It’s probably a good thing since they didn’t match anything on the sled anyway. This time around I went with a model that will fit future cosmetic changes. Make sure you purchase the FBW version! I actually walked up to the counter with the older cable version and when I did a last minute check.

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HD Razor Tourpack…

One of the first parts I ordered for my FLTRX was a HD Razor Tour Pack. The main purpose of the TP was to provide a backrest for my wife when riding two-up. I used a removable backrest in the past for my FLHR Standard and that worked fine. I don’t plan on riding any long tours with this sled so my thought process was a little different.

This time around I wanted a different look and wanted a Tour Pack instead of just a backrest. I started looking at the different models available by HD and the third party vendors. After a week of looking around and checking out other Roadglide’s I decided on the Razor or Chopped Tour Pack by Harley Davidson.

I had given serious consideration for the third party tour packs and thought the look and function was comparable to HD. After reading reviews by owners that purchased the third party tour packs I decided I wanted the quality of HD and their color matched product. What we do with our sleds is a personal choice and I don’t really care what others do.  Call it what you want but I like to see the Harley Davidson logo on the top of my cover and knowing it is a genuine product. The fact that it has a big part in changing the look of my sled I know I didn’t try to cut corners. I gave it my best shot.

Once again it became a choice of looks rather then function as I didn’t require the additional capacity a Chopped Tour Pack offered but still had the convenience of a passenger back support. The choice was simple for me, I ordered the Razor model.

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When you order the Razor TP from the dealership you can have it color matched painted. I’m sure this adds to the turnaround time but you will be certain the TP will match your sled. I went ahead and ordered the cover lock (matching key to bags), passenger backrest, TP mounting plate and the 4 point docking station. All these parts arrived in less than 2 weeks. The TP itself took about 5 weeks to arrive from the time it was ordered.

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One note about pinstripes. I had the stock red pinstripe on my sled covered with gloss black. I will eventually have matching pinstripes on the TP. Nothing to flashy just enough to continue the subtle flow of the existing pinstripe theme.

I had spray painted the bracket that mounts to the four point docking system flat black. I wanted to see how well it would look with the rest of the sled. I planned on trying this with gloss black too. Well… after I did the installation I liked how the flat black came out and didn’t bother with gloss. I will have to take my tour pack setup apart later so I can have it powder coated.

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In my opinion, the Razor TP is a great alternative to the passenger backrest. It has the comfort and safety benefit with the added bonus of being able to carry smaller items. I can carry my laptop briefcase, jacket and more for my daily commute. You won’t be able to store a full sized helmet like the larger versions. I thought I would be taking the TP off when my wife wasn’t riding with me. I ended up liking the look enough where I don’t even bother taking it off. I also installed the Brukus security devices on the TP and saddlebags to add one level of theft deterrent.

If you’re into long distance multi-day rides I would recommend getting the larger TP for the added capacity. The ideal situation would be to purchase a King TP for the long hauls and use the Razor for daily riding. When I travel on long road trips I use a whole different Tour Pack setup. It’s called the GL1800 system, aka… Goldwing.