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2020, Harley Davidson LiveWire
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285 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
some have asked what my riding position is with my drag bars.

Hope this helps for decision making. It's not uncomfortable for "me" even after several hundred miles.

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2022, Liquid Black
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158 Posts
tcypher did a nice writeup!

I'm just finishing this mod now. I like the look and feel!

Just to add a little more info for anyone interested, if mounted level this HD drag bar has essentially the same pullback as the stock Livewire bar. But, it is flat and does not have any rise. The Drag Bar is a little narrower also.

Here are some pics looking at the bars side by side and with the Livewire bar directly on top of the Drag bar...

Bicycle handlebar Wood Automotive exterior Bumper Bicycle part

Wood Wall Automotive exterior Tints and shades Bumper
 

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30 Posts
Hey guys, I wanted to share my experience with the drag/low bars on the Livewire. My experience was not as positive as I had hoped, which I will explain below.

I was considering two options, the Harley Drag bars that tcypher used (Drag Bar - 55800861 | Harley-Davidson USA) and the Biltwell Zero Drag 1" Handlebar (Biltwell Zero Drag 1" Handlebar - RevZilla).

The differences in the specs are notable. The HD drag bars have a 4" pullback and the Biltwell has 2". The Biltwell is very narrow, at 27 inches tip-tip making it great for lane-splitting. The HD one is 28.5 inches wide - which is still better than the 30" width of the stock bars. I went with the Biltwell.

Well, the issue quickly became apparent. After HD of Glendale updated my bar, these turned out to be so compact that I can no longer "lock" the bike's steering - the left-hand switchgear hits the tank! In fact, many times after I got my bike out of park, I see the traction control feature has been activated because that switch was rammed up against the tank. Last week, I had to wrangle the bike off its stand, against gravity, and had to turn the bars more left using my weight as leverage, causing the traction control plastic switch to BREAK OFF!

The other issue I had with these bars is that although it allowed me to lean forward more to "attack" a curve, giving a sportbike feel, the handling itself wasn't any better. In fact, the bike felt better "balanced" with the stock bars. It is pretty apparent to me that the engineers designed the whole bike around this specific rider triangle with the corresponding center of gravity of the rider. Also, the low and forward bars meant I had to push my crotch up against the tank, which felt cramped. All in all, this bike's geometry doesn't support traditional crotch-rocket style ergonomics, or even handling.

Nevertheless, this bike has made me widen my definition of what is "sporty" on a bike; sportiness need not mean pegs up way high and sitting on your crotch. Of course, every Hyperstrada and supermoto rider knows that.

Please see below my hand position and rider triangle differences between the stock and Biltwell drag bars - you will notice how my arms are also much closer to each other with the drag bars.
Wheel Tire Land vehicle Vehicle Fuel tank
 

· Registered
2022, Liquid Black
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158 Posts
Bars are a personal thing.

But it sounds like at 5'6, the 2"of pullback stretches you out too much.

At 5'10, the 4"of the HD drag bar is still relaxed for my riding style. And I am good with the slightly less leverage of the shorter bar. The angles on this bike are nowhere near motard, so one doesnt need a motard riding position.

But that HD dealer did you no favors if they installed your bars so that they hit the tank. It is pretty easy to rotate the controls to avoid hitting the tank. Though personally I wouldnt go any shorter than the HD drag bar without changing out the front brake line for one with different fittings, to be able to route the line without stress.
 

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2020, Harley Davidson LiveWire
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285 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
great write-up!
so, you'll have to come to Seattle to try my HD bars and see how you like them. :)

I do feel my setup is perfect (for me) and does not hit the tank (even rotated down), so it's working well still!
 

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Bars are a personal thing.

But it sounds like at 5'6, the 2"of pullback stretches you out too much.

At 5'10, the 4"of the HD drag bar is still relaxed for my riding style. And I am good with the slightly less leverage of the shorter bar. The angles on this bike are nowhere near motard, so one doesnt need a motard riding position.

But that HD dealer did you no favors if they installed your bars so that they hit the tank. It is pretty easy to rotate the controls to avoid hitting the tank. Though personally I wouldnt go any shorter than the HD drag bar without changing out the front brake line for one with different fittings, to be able to route the line without stress.

Yes, I have thought of that: that this bar is too much of a stretch for someone with my short torso and arms. I should have gotten the HD drag bar, which is also wider and that should help with the controls-hitting-the-tank issue, as tcypher can probably attest.

But now I have a question for the group: has anyone considered "rotating" the stock bars down, so that the pullback causes the grips to be situated at an downward angle and lower than the stock position? I kind of like the look of bars/clip-ons swept-down-and-in on British cafe racers.

Anyone tried this with the stock bars?
 

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great write-up!
so, you'll have to come to Seattle to try my HD bars and see how you like them. :)

I do feel my setup is perfect (for me) and does not hit the tank (even rotated down), so it's working well still!
I will hit you up if/when I am in Seattle! I have been following your posts even before I bought my LW1, and you gave me the courage to do this conversion.
 

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2020, Harley Davidson LiveWire
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285 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
...Anyone tried this with the stock bars?
I have tried it and felt my top weight (body) was to heavy on the bars, (hurting my hands)... that's why I have yet to put my clubman bars on yet, 'cause they were VERY similar in position... the clubman just looked nicer (with the curved design.)
 
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