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Premium Member
1,416 Posts
My current setup:

Tire Wheel Automotive lighting Hood Automotive tire

Both levers are extended models by Softbrake. You can't judge the height in this picture. The heel pad is only about 3/4" above the footboard. This image shows it better:

Wheel Tire Fuel tank Hood Automotive lighting

I went this route because it gives me more than the entire footboard for space. I don't have to lift a leg to heel-shift...just tip my heel up slightly and slide it over the pad. Foot stays planted on the board when shifting. I have the toe lever set lower because I don't need my size 13 boot to go under it. Down-shifts are fast and don't require me to lift my foot off the board.

You can see I replaced the oem linkage rod with the much better H-D replacement rod. The Heim joints on this rod are far more precise and dependable than the ball/socket setups that tend to get rickety over time and usage.

15 Posts
I am trying to decide if heel shifters play any part in the premature wear of a shifter shaft or shift arm. Over the past few years I have noticed bikes with heel shifters tend to wear out the splines on the shifter shaft and/or shifter arm faster than bikes without them. Is this my imagination? Just a coincidence? Or am I putting too much thought into this?

I’ve had several riding brothers have their shifter shaft/arm fail with no warning. We all already know about the issue with the shaft and/or arm wearing and failing. A couple of my friends found the shaft on their bikes worn while doing maintenance. At least one of them was running down the road when the shaft slipped out of the arm on the inside of the primary and fell off the motorcycle. All of these guys are riders and all of them maintain their bikes. All of them run and use heel shifters.

I have never used a heel shifter. If the bike has one on it when I buy the bike the heel shifter is normally the first thing to go when I get home. I have no real issue with them I just don’t use them. I have also never had a shifter shaft or arm wear out. I ride with a couple of other guys that don’t use heel shifters and normally remove them like I do. Neither of them have ever experienced a shifter part failure. Now I do check all the bolts in the shifter assemblies on my bikes regularly to be sure nothing has loosened up. Tighten anything that has loosened up and normally add a little blue Loctite to any I find loose. This may have something to do with why I’ve not had one fail to date.

So, what say you? Are heel shifters contributing to the shifter failures? Has anyone else noticed this relationship? Is this just a coincidence?

Just something to think about and discuss. 😊
I've had to replace in the past , got 80k on the one I have now with no problems just check that it's not loose .
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