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Discussion Starter #1
The all-out sport riding position on the GSX-R is just too much for my poor old neckbones, damaged in a work accident many years ago. (I fell through a roof I was building- don't do that.)
Even my long-term Kawasaki ZX1100E (GPZ) needed a bar raising for me to be able to do the miles it was so capable of.
Long ago, Heli Bars made a setup called "Multi Tour Sport" bars, a five-piece contraption that was easily the most adaptable handlebar ever. They discontinued it in 2008 and when I called and asked if they had any more laying around, I was rather curtly informed of that discontinuation.
Too bad, these things can both work on almost anything that can handle 7/8" bars and can drive you absolutely crazy out of your mind trying to dial them in, there are so many near-infinite possibilities (plus the need to get both sides the same, a whole-nother problem).
I had a set grabbed off a sport-touring forum a few years ago and finally got around to mounting them on the GSX-R. I'd already put on some hokey semi-drag bars in simple riser mounts and that was only okay. The wrist angle was kind of off for both of us.
The GSX-R is particularly difficult to work with for a bar raise as the tank divots and the rear extension of the upper fairing really constrain what you can do. I'm pretty close to trimming off some of the fairing below the topmost windshield screws just to get some clearance for the front master cylinder and other parts.
I started out by ordering 4" overlength brake lines from Galfer. The lines were overdue for replacement anyway, so extra length is not a problem even if I returned the handlebars to clip-ons.
The actual installation was easy and not too long. The adjustment time was so long as to be infuriating. Fortunately, I had a whole day to kill on the project. Now, the weather's gone full-winter around here and I can't even take the bike out to enjoy the conversion (and drive myself crazier dialing the various elements in even closer). But my neck is enthused- I could only ride it for 15 minutes at a time at most in the stock configuration.
I'm not done, and more needs to be figured out, but this is the start.
I thought I'd throw this out there for the more, ah, mature among us.
 

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SuperMod of the North
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looks like a nice install. It will be interesting to see how much it changes the steering. Are they wider than OEM bars? Meaning are you going to have more leverage on the fork assembly & how will this affect turn in and handling at high speed? A consideration down the road when Mother Nature stops her annual tantrum would be does this change also mean adjustments to the steering damper. I am assuming the travel in degrees is still the same as stock.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Tinsnips- Now, that's an interesting question. I will be looking at that when I get a chance to give the bike a workout. (Today it's 20 deg F and the roads are icy after a couple-three inches of snow).
I had little time on the bike in the original clip-ons configuration, mostly due to the neck thing. A full day of ortho pain was a tough price to pay for a few jollies on a sport bike.
I did do some longer rides on it, up to a couple hours, with the drag-like bar and apart from the sore wrist from the odd grip angle it had- I couldn't rotate the setup enough to get the right angle without lots of hard-parts fouling on the fairing- I was pleasantly surprised with how well the bike accommodated me.
The setup does indeed go lock-to-lock but there is minor contact at each end. Not enough to be dangerous or to cause U-turns going wide. I don't like it, but so far it's the best I can get.
Added to the equation is that I also installed Soupy's links to get the back end down a little. Since this is after all the Missus' bike, and she's a newer rider who still wants a firm foot-plant at stops, that was the first thing I did once the bike was running halfway decently. Actually, I kind of like it. The drag bars were only a bit wider than the clip-ons but the effect, with so much less weight on the wrists, was quite a bit lighter steering at moderate speeds.
I haven't yet measured but I believe the Helis are the same width, again not much more than stock.
The tires I chose to install are Pirelli Diablo Corso IIIs. We liked them on another midsize bike and they're a lot cheaper than the Michelins we usually get. Remember, this was a $900 project bike and watching the cost was Item Number Two after safety.
The Pirellis turn in fairly easily and quickly, at least compared to our other bikes, so I would say the steering is quite light in regular road riding so far.
A track day, if this bike hangs around long enough, is far in the future, but that is what was cited by the Missus as a reason to purchase. We shall see, but so far, I really haven't been able to do much of what one would call performance riding on it, what with sorting out the numerous problems with just plain running.
 

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SuperMod of the North
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Awesome. Post up your progress. Not sure what accommodations you need for your neck but rotating your levers up a bit may allow your wrists to drop and then in turn, also your shoulders. I am in my 50's and found my upper shoulders and lower neck would fatigue. A 5 or 6 degree rotation meant I was less elbows up and helped with that.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The neck? Simple. I can't tip my head back for long, as if looking up. Or, if riding a clip-on-equipped bike, tipping the head and helmet up enough to see where I'm going.
Made the last 27 years of my carpenter career pretty tough- imagine doing crown moldings or building soffits without looking up.
Basically, I've never really ridden a modern sportbike, not more than a short while.
But then, even back in the olden days, I pulled the clip-ons off my '66 Velocette Venom Thruxton 500 and put a flat, "European" bar on it. (Not to mention a Mikuni to take the place of the no-idle -circuit Amal GP.)
 
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