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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
14" KST Pathfinder install

Or, where have you been all my life, 14" apes?



I'm getting old. I have minor stenosis in a few of my cervical vertebrae, which - if I don't keep my posture just so - causes tingling and numbness in my left arm. I'm broken down too. I had a microdiscectomy for my L1/S1 vertebrae back in April. I also had a nasty bunch compression fractures in my left wrist from a bike wreck a few years ago. It healed, but the bones knitted back together just a bit crooked, so my left hand sort of sits at a weird angle at the wrist.



I'd pushed the stock Ultra bars forward a bit, but the pullback on them was just too much. I've ridden like that for just about 4 years, but my last ride to Toledo and back left me with numb hands and a sore back from slumping over.



I saw a thread here about the KST Vanguard series bars, loved the adjustability of the pullback, and figured, "what the hell?" Ordered them from Dennis Kirk, waited a week, and here we are. Also decided to install Harley heated grips at the same time.



The video from KST leaves some stuff out and oversimplifies the installation. The written instructions are pretty poor (but still better than Harley's instructions for the grips. Having a shop manual helps.





Getting the old bars off is simple. The KST video forgets to tell you to remove the trigger button from the left grip. Small screwdriver, slide it outboard and off. Definitely put a towel over the tank. I'd already removed the pin from the bar clamp, a hammer and punch snap the pins off the clutch and brake clamps.









Have a seat at the kitchen table, pull the wires out of the old bars. Take the lower mount for the new bars, make sure it's oriented per the instructions, and put the two side pieces into the lower clamps. Pound them flush with the bottom with a rubber or leather mallet. Snug but don't tighten the pinch bolts.







Take the woven "finger trap", thread it through the new bars, stick the plugs in the top end (I used blue painter's tape on one plug that wouldn't fit), and run the new wires. Piece of cake.





Get the new bars on the bike, make sure the hydraulic lines are behind the bars and that the wiring can be run behind the nacelle, and clamp the bars down. Get on the bike, adjust everything where you want it, whip out your torque wrench, and tighten everything down.









The wiring is a piece of cake. The hydraulic lines......No so. KST says you can use the stock lines, and you can, but...I don't like how tight they are. At full lock, you'll pull the line loom on the right side (the plastic piece that all the hydraulic lines run through) out of its holder. These bars really need another inch on each of the lines, 2" would be even better.



Anyhoo, I buttoned everything up and went for a ride. Total time was 4 hours, and I could do it again in 2 hours.



Holy mother of god.....I can't believe how much more comfortable my bike is. I rode for 90 minutes and no numbness or tingling in my hands or arms. My back stayed straight without having to think about it. These things are the shiznit.
 

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Awesome. Great write up. Pics look cool. Now I'm back on the fence of 12s or 14s.

Anyhow. looks killer. Glad its helping with the aches and pains. I have a few like yours. L4-5 microdiscectomy partial paralysis in the right leg. But like you. I keep on going.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I went back and forth on 12" vs. 14". I'm 6'2", 34" inseam, 36" sleeve. All I read was to go 2" taller than you think. So that's exactly what I did, and they're perfect.
 

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I went back and forth on 12" vs. 14". I'm 6'2", 34" inseam, 36" sleeve. All I read was to go 2" taller than you think. So that's exactly what I did, and they're perfect.
I ran 12s on my 16 RGS. Then went to 14s on my Freewheeler. Same seat same frame same foot boards. So basically the same exact seating position. The 14s win for comfort. I'm 5'10ish. Long torso. I just cant get past the look of the 14s on the RG. For me. But knowing they're more comfortable? I'm confused again.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I ran 12s on my 16 RGS. Then went to 14s on my Freewheeler. Same seat same frame same foot boards. So basically the same exact seating position. The 14s win for comfort. I'm 5'10ish. Long torso. I just cant get past the look of the 14s on the RG. For me. But knowing they're more comfortable? I'm confused again.


I'm not a fan of the look, but this is definitely a "function over form" thing.
 

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All I read was to go 2" taller than you think. So that's exactly what I did, and they're perfect.
I've heard this very same thing. I've considered these bars myself, and your writeup makes it a bit more likely that I will go this way. Being two inches shorter than you I'll go with the 12" bars.

Thanks for the writeup!
 

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Great job, looks killer, taller bars grow on you, it did with me, I also went two inches up from my first choice, and I did 14 inch Wild 1s Reaper hooked apes and I love em, no more neck and shoulder pain.
 

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I went back and forth on 12" vs. 14". I'm 6'2", 34" inseam, 36" sleeve. All I read was to go 2" taller than you think. So that's exactly what I did, and they're perfect.

Train, would you mind getting grip to grip (tip to tip) measurement? I understand the Pathfinders are narrower then the other Vanguard models.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Just an update....

Spent 4 hours in the saddle today with zero pain, stiffness, numbness, or tingling. My rider's triangle is now perfect for me. I can't say enough how good these bars are.
 

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I've heard this very same thing. I've considered these bars myself, and your writeup makes it a bit more likely that I will go this way. Being two inches shorter than you I'll go with the 12" bars.

Thanks for the writeup!
Should've said something Joe, would've let you try my sled out during the M&G .
@05train bars look good.
 
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