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Just installed a set of Barkbuster Jet handguards. Here are some things to consider for those of you that may be thinking about doing the same.

1. Tip-o-the-hat to the Aussies for making a solid product. These things seem just about bomb-proof.
2. Removing the bar ends and bar weights is a pain, but you already knew that. My bar ends were going in the trash so I just used a big pair of vice-grips and used the pull and twist method. Yes, the bar ends get chewed up and yes, you will bend the little metal clip. I didn't care.
3. If you want to reuse the internal bar weights you will have to trim them down by 3/4" or so to leave room for the expansion collar that holds the barkbusters in place.
4. The aluminum backbone does not line up perfectly with the end of the handlebars. I had to do some bending and twisting to get everything lined up and clear the levers. A bench vice with jaw covers works great. Just bend a little at a time and sneak up on it.
5. If you have a windscreen that is wider than stock, then you are going to have clearance issues at full-lock. My setup just barely clears. I'm talking like 1/4".

Overall, these are solid hand guards that look great. Don't know how well they work yet because it's too damn cold to ride, but I like them. They were $85 delivered from Revzilla.
 

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Just installed a set of Barkbuster Jet handguards. Here are some things to consider for those of you that may be thinking about doing the same.

1. Tip-o-the-hat to the Aussies for making a solid product. These things seem just about bomb-proof.
2. Removing the bar ends and bar weights is a pain, but you already knew that. My bar ends were going in the trash so I just used a big pair of vice-grips and used the pull and twist method. Yes, the bar ends get chewed up and yes, you will bend the little metal clip. I didn't care.
3. If you want to reuse the internal bar weights you will have to trim them down by 3/4" or so to leave room for the expansion collar that holds the barkbusters in place.
4. The aluminum backbone does not line up perfectly with the end of the handlebars. I had to do some bending and twisting to get everything lined up and clear the levers. A bench vice with jaw covers works great. Just bend a little at a time and sneak up on it.
5. If you have a windscreen that is wider than stock, then you are going to have clearance issues at full-lock. My setup just barely clears. I'm talking like 1/4".

Overall, these are solid hand guards that look great. Don't know how well they work yet because it's too damn cold to ride, but I like them. They were $85 delivered from Revzilla.
I have a set of Barkbusters still in the box awaiting to be installed but balk at doing it myself because of the PITA procedure of removing the barend weights. There's got to be a better way. How does the factory service manual show/tell how to do it?
 

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When I added "ZETA XC" guards to both my '08 and '09 Vs - I just removed that 'socket' head capscrew from the end of the bars, pulled OFF the bar-end weights, then added the guards, re-using those 'socket' head capscrews.

Easy-peasy.
 

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Getting ready to do this on my bike and wondered - did you trim and re-insert your bar weights, or did you just throw out the whole thing?
If you threw it all out, have you noticed a difference in the level of vibrations now that the weights are gone?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I reinstalled the internal bar weights. This is the order of events:

1. After much pulling, twisting, and cursing, the bar ends and weights came out as one piece.
2. I then used a torch to break the copious amount of red loctite holding the bar ends to the weights (why Kawasaki, WHY?)
3. The internal weight is just a length of hardened steel bar with rubber grommets on each end.
4. The outer grommet is solid and the inner grommet is fluted. To make room for the expansion collar of the barkbusters, I cut about 3/4" off of the fluted end of the weight. Angle grinder with cut-off wheel works great. If you use a hacksaw, pack a lunch.
5. You can't re-use the fluted grommet because cutting the bar weight removes the grove that the grommet sat in. To keep the end of the bar from flopping around inside the handlebar, I used a piece of self-adhesive weather stripping wrapped around the trimmed end.
6. I then used some silicone grease on the remaining grommet and weather stripping to get the bar weight back into the handlebars. It is a very tight fit. It's not going anywhere.
7. Then just install the barkbusters as per instructions. Just remember, you may have to tweak the aluminum back bone to get everything to line up.
 

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Yikes! I want to replace a damaged stock bar end, but now Im thinking I might just slap some paint on it and move on. Is this right... even though the bar end is attached to the inner weight/dampner by a bolt, the inner dampner and bar end come off as one piece regardless of whether or not you remove said bolt???
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Kawasaki decided to use a big glob of red loctite on that particular bolt and red loctite is fiendishly good at making sure bolts don't come loose. Like ever. I did a lot of head scratching trying to figure out a way to get that bolt loose. If you just crank on it, the whole assembly will spin. At first I tried a heat gun, but there is just no way that I could come up with that could get enough heat that far down into the bar-end assembly to soften that loctite without damaging other things like the grips or throttle tube. In the end I just went full caveman on it and ripped the whole thing out in one piece. LuvNot came up with another solution using ratchet straps. You can check that out in LuvNot's June Bug build post. If you just want to fix a scratch, then yes, I would say 1000 grit sandpaper and touch up paint is the easiest solution.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Just a thought, but you could also just take it to the dealer and let them remove the bar ends. They may have a special tool for it or something. In the end, it didn't really matter to me because I planned on throwing the bar ends in the trash anyway.
 

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Just installed a set of Barkbuster Jet handguards. Here are some things to consider for those of you that may be thinking about doing the same.

1. Tip-o-the-hat to the Aussies for making a solid product. These things seem just about bomb-proof.
2. Removing the bar ends and bar weights is a pain, but you already knew that. My bar ends were going in the trash so I just used a big pair of vice-grips and used the pull and twist method. Yes, the bar ends get chewed up and yes, you will bend the little metal clip. I didn't care.
3. If you want to reuse the internal bar weights you will have to trim them down by 3/4" or so to leave room for the expansion collar that holds the barkbusters in place.
4. The aluminum backbone does not line up perfectly with the end of the handlebars. I had to do some bending and twisting to get everything lined up and clear the levers. A bench vice with jaw covers works great. Just bend a little at a time and sneak up on it.
5. If you have a windscreen that is wider than stock, then you are going to have clearance issues at full-lock. My setup just barely clears. I'm talking like 1/4".

Overall, these are solid hand guards that look great. Don't know how well they work yet because it's too damn cold to ride, but I like them. They were $85 delivered from Revzilla.
  • A little heat from a torch softens red loctite which is used to secure the end weights and makes removal a LOT easier.
  • I installed these on my bike and did not have to bend the brackets. Barkbuster makes a Versys specific fitment kit that contains all the hardware including the required end weights that mount between the backbone and the bar ends. Installation was a breeze with this kit and the aforementioned tip about heat. Be sure to use blue loctite on installation to prevent bolts from vibrating loose.
  • If you have aftermarket SS braided brake lines where the lines from both calipers attach at the reservoir on the brake handle, they will not work with hand guards as there are clearance issues.
  • I found hand guards have no perceivable effect on hand warmth/comfort in cold weather. Warmer gloves and heated grips do though.
 

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  • If you have aftermarket SS braided brake lines where the lines from both calipers attach at the reservoir on the brake handle, they will not work with hand guards as there are clearance issues.
  • I found hand guards have no perceivable effect on hand warmth/comfort in cold weather. Warmer gloves and heated grips do though.
I have to respectfully disagree w/ these two comments. To go to two separate SS lines on my '08 650 I added a spacer and longer bolt (see pics). As for hand guards NOT helping your hands... they DO (and HAVE TO, as you LESSEN the wind-chill effect)...!
 

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I have to respectfully disagree w/ these two comments. To go to two separate SS lines on my '08 650 I added a spacer and longer bolt (see pics). As for hand guards NOT helping your hands... they DO (and HAVE TO, as you LESSEN the wind-chill effect)...!
I did do fastEddie's spacer trick which worked however they then interfered with the Givi windshield as they stuck out further from the bar. I've since removed them because of this issue and don't notice a difference with cold weather comfort although I wear warmer gloves when it gets cold. If you are going to install hand guards with SS braided lines I would recommend getting the ones that follow the route of the OEM lines, that is they cross over above the front fender, although this style can be more difficult to bleed.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Twowheels, do you have the x300, the 650, or the 1000? I feel like we may be doing an apples/oranges thing here.
 

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Twowheels, do you have the x300, the 650, or the 1000? I feel like we may be doing an apples/oranges thing here.
650 Version 2 with Givi touring screen. Barkbuster Storm handguards with Versys mount kit. Gaffer SS Brake lines with double connection at brake handle.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
650 Version 2 with Givi touring screen. Barkbuster Storm handguards with Versys mount kit. Gaffer SS Brake lines with double connection at brake handle.
That would explain the discrepancy. I'm talking about the x300 in this post which has a totally different bar setup and uses a different Barkbuster kit than the bigger Versys models. The x300 is so different from the 650 and the 1000 that I sometimes wonder why they even called it a Versys. It's more like a mutant Ninja 300 than a Versys.
 

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Versys 300 bar weight removal. The critical mistake was bathing it in red not blue loctite (2 drops would have been fine).

If you want to re-use the bar end weights, this will limit the damage.

1. Rap the end of the screw about 3 times with a flat headed punch and hammer. Heat the bar end with a hair dryer or
heat gun for 5-10 minutes.

2. If you have an angle grinder ($10 at Harbor Freight make two flat cuts on the pointy end of the bar weights.
These will give a good grip for vise/channel locks. You will need the hex socket with the longest bar you have
and add some sort of extension pipe. Will need a buddy to help hold the vise/channel locks and the bike up.

3. Still frozen, then use two slot bladed screwdrivers and squeeze inside the grip and pry against the handlebar.
This will work, but it takes time. Avoid turning the grip, even if it makes you feel good, turning will damage
the metal retaining clip. Do not pry against the silver colored tabs/legs move the screw drivers to a dark section.
There are two sets of tabs/legs, once you are past these then put the vise/channel grips on and pull straight out.

4. The very end of the bars, fake stilletto look will be messed up. Your choice, sand and paint, most likely you will
have to cut some of the end off to install the hand guards.
 
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