Crash Bar Opinions? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-07-2010, 11:22 PM Thread Starter
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Crash Bar Opinions?

I've read a ton of threads on the subject and am still not all that close to making up my mind at least between two of them.

Please compare the SW-Motech, Hepco & Becker and Happy Trails crash bars/guards.

Why did you go with the bars you went with? Any major cons of any of these?
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 12:20 AM
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went with H&B's, also fitted KTM hand guards. no damage on zero speed drops (bike fell over of stand and going up hill hit a patch of wet grass)

engine bars and hand guards scraped when fell over on patch of ice. low speed, guess sub 10MPH. the hand guards protected the hands and the levers and the heated grips.

there has been a reported issue with SamBamboo (IIRC) with H&B's deflecting and damaging the radiator or rad panels, and subsequent problems with insurers palying silly buggers.

personally I don't like the SW Motech approach, the bars don't have a tie piece so there is no spreading of the load across the whole fit,so everythingis loaded up onto the side you fall over on.

bear in mind that no aftermarket engine/crash bar is going to give 100% protection. think carefully about what you think is the problem you are trying to protect against. for me that was the engine and fairing pieces..... and I can demnstrate they have worked for me

SW-Motech bars protect more low down, H&B's more mid to upper.

in short yer pays yer money, yer takes yer choice.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 12:29 AM
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went with H&B's, also fitted KTM hand guards. no damage on zero speed drops (bike fell over of stand and going up hill hit a patch of wet grass)

engine bars and hand guards scraped when fell over on patch of ice. low speed, guess sub 10MPH. the hand guards protected the hands and the levers and the heated grips.

there has been a reported issue with SamBamboo (IIRC) with H&B's deflecting and damaging the radiator or rad panels, and subsequent problems with insurers palying silly buggers.

personally I don't like the SW Motech approach, the bars don't have a tie piece so there is no spreading of the load across the whole fit,so everythingis loaded up onto the side you fall over on.

bear in mind that no aftermarket engine/crash bar is going to give 100% protection. think carefully about what you think is the problem you are trying to protect against. for me that was the engine and fairing pieces..... and I can demnstrate they have worked for me

SW-Motech bars protect more low down, H&B's more mid to upper.

in short yer pays yer money, yer takes yer choice.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 06:49 AM
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I also have the H&B bars and have been very satisfied. They have done a very good job of protecting everything that they are suppose to protect in three seperate incidents. They got a little scrathed up, but a little sandpaper and paper...good as new. As Healdem said they protect well mid and high, so I have had no damage to the plastics since installing them

Steve

I bought a motorcycle because my wife said that I couldn't! Now I have two and she still says I can't have another one!
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Sounds like a challenge to me!

Now I have four!
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 07:07 AM
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Went for H&B after seeing a Singapore bike take a direct hit and the bars saved a lot of damage. sorry I dont have the image but My Red has got the image. Most of us here use H&B.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 12:20 PM
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Quote.(My RED-was a witness to the mishap)

the rider swerved and hit the rear right side of a stationery SUV at speed.
if not for the Hepco engine guards, his left knee would have been shattered.
Note the deformed section of the guard which took the impact and spared his limb.
Hepco guards are mounted higher than others and will protect the legs in the event of a collision, in addition to protecting the bike during a crash.

Unquote.



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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-08-2010, 09:52 PM
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I also have the H & B's. The happy trails have to be removed to change the oil


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Fishing and riding,doesn't get any better!!


2009 Lime green Versys
Baldwin reg. saddle w/lime grn. thread and gel insert
Hepco & Becker crash bars
Givi side carriers w/ E21's
Fenda Extenda
Motowerk foot peg lowering blocks & mirror extenders
cut tail fender
black lower panels
Mikesshields Gran Touring, clear
Alaskan Leather Pillion 1 buttpad (trip use only)
Sw-Motech 20mm riser

Versys gone..replace with Victory Hammer
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-09-2010, 02:55 PM Thread Starter
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Great info guys! Thanks!
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-16-2010, 02:27 AM
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Has anyone tried having tubing bent and welded to the Motech bars, to give the same radiator shrouding as the H-Bs?
I had the same impact as mentioned above, on my last bike. On the same left side. I'm happy that I can still walk.

Could anyone give better pictures of the mounting area of that top bracket?

Also, I take it that no one's tried an underbelly plate on the Motech's either, correct?
I'm fond of hopping curbs and going up and down stairs.

Edit:
Also, what's up with those silly u-bolts on the Motechs?
How hard would it have been to include an actual clamp?

Last edited by homer; 06-16-2010 at 02:34 AM.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-16-2010, 08:22 AM
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You may have another choice-Givi.They are shown on Twisted Throttle for the 2010.I don't see why they would not fit earlier models.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-16-2010, 08:36 AM
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The HBs don't look like they would protect the cases very well compared to the SW Motechs. Any thoughts/experiences?
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-16-2010, 12:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aleeoop View Post
The HBs don't look like they would protect the cases very well compared to the SW Motechs. Any thoughts/experiences?
That's been my question as well. The only drawback I can see to the H&Bs is lower engine case protection. Has anyone with H&Bs scratched up or damaged the lower engine cases?
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-16-2010, 01:04 PM
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Well, that's what I mean.
Why not have the Motechs, with an additional upper radiator bar?
Not so much to protect the radiator, but to protect the rider.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-16-2010, 02:27 PM
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I have the Motechs. I haven't tested them and prefer not to. Most here have been lucky enough to be in the same situation regardless of brand, but you never know, eh?

Here's why I got the Motech's

If you look at the pics above, you'll notice that the H&B bars have been crushed at the weld joints. This was done in order to avoid having to "fishmouth" the tubing (cost savings??). On the H&B, a slot is cut into the front bar and then the crushed horizontal (horizontal and vertical are relative terms in this case) bar is slid into the slot and welded. This is a LOT easier/cheaper way to build a bar and compensate for production tolerances. However, I don't believe this "crush" method is as strong as the Motech method. Looks a little tacky, too! (for those guys who value appearance)

The Motech bar has two horizontal tubes supported in the middle with a vertical spreader and an additional mounting point. The H&B has one vertical and one horizontal. (material and cost savings for H&B out of your pocket)

The H&B bar seems to duplicate protection, since the horizontal bar directly overlaps the factory frame tubing (see pic above). It actually looks like the Motech bar minus the bottom horizontal bar(AND the vertical spreader and additional center mount)

I AM a little confused by the lack of a center spreader bar in front of the radiator on the Motech unit, but with the generous clearances to the radiator, it would seem it could be straightened fairly easily and likely wouldn't contact the radiator in a moderate dump(you would need to be "speared" by something into the radiator area to bend the open end). To address the situation, I've given consideration to fabbing a center section/ skid plate/rad screen to compliment the stock bars. Seems it would be fairly simple to engineer.

The Motech bar seems to offer better side protection to the engine overall. I'll take that. Side damage is, IMHO, more prevalent than sliding and hitting the exhaust or bottom of the engine. Upper fairing protection is about the same on both. Oh well....

All of these bars are what I would consider consumables and not designed to "save" the bike in a serious crash. At that point, I'm far more concerned about losing flesh. gear up, in any case.

V-Zee

(Added note: I checked out photos of undamaged bars (so you guys didn't get flamey) and the construction method I described is accurate. It is also the exact point where these bars failed in this accident. Pricing on both bars is about the same. 'Nuff said. V-Zee)

Last edited by VerstehenZee; 06-16-2010 at 02:35 PM.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 06-20-2010, 10:27 PM
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Im sure they are all strong enough to do the job but I went with SWMOTECH because I have purchased their products in the past and they are made better then OEM parts. The Germany over-engineering really shows. Not only that to me the cases need to have as much or more protection than anything else and the SMW units seem to do that best (by design).

ST1300, Versys, SV650S
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