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Reducing my Bad Vibes


I switched from the stock bars with risers to Renthal high road bars. I love them, except for the vibes. They are far far better than the stock bars without barends, but still make my hands ache on the motorway. This engine is quite vibey anway and the bumps etc are still not wholly damped by the suspension. Later on I will be upgrading to progressive to help with this.

I decided there were three things I could do to help reduce the vvibes: heavier bar ends, filling the bars with something like the bar snake and rubber mounting instead of straight metal on metal.

After fitting the plastic tubing be between the bars and the bike, I discovered that it let the bars twist freely - which was no good! I then tried to replace it with rubber. This was better, but when I used the bars to steer, they would be very wobbly and unstable. The whole damping the connection between the bars and the bike with rubber/plastic etc doesn't work well with the FZ6. I value the feedback and control I get from the bars too much.

The first step was the heavier bar ends...

The Oberon barend I had on originally only weighed 100g:-

The stock barends are 300g:-

My solution was some heavier barends I had from my last bike that fix using a bolt. I had to bodge something to get it to fit into the rube of the Renthals though. An expansion bolt was the thing. The barends were originally chromed, so I sanded them off and started painting them black. My painting skills are awful and it took several layers and several goes sanding off and repainting after they got messed up. This is not the final paintjob below:-

With a rubber tube around the expansion bolt, it was a perfect fit and weighed 250g (nearly up to stock):-

I also had to find something to fill the bars with. Bar snake is too hard to get in the UK and although some people have tried silicone it's had mixed reviews and also is pretty permanent. Lead shot is another option, but that's also hard to find in the (non-gun-mad) UK. I decided on sand.

The first step to doing this is to remove the rubber stops Renthal install to stop moisture getting into the bars. I used a screw with some string tied around it. I screwed this into the caps and then pulled them out carefully using the string:-

With caps:-

Without caps:-

Here you can see the barends looking shiny:-

I even painted the bolts to attach the barends:-

Here you can see the expansion bolt close up. I used the M6 as the M8 was too large to fit into the bar:-

I ran the bolt through the expansion nut thingy with a large washer on the end and just tapped it into the bar with a hammer. I used paraffin to lubricate it as it dries out completely very quickly:-

Here is the sand I poured into the bars once I had one of the barends attached. I removed the throttle and front brake cyclinder and held the bar verticle. I just used a funnel to pour in the sand slowly and kept shaking and tapping the sides of the bar with a rubber mallet. I managed to get 200g in there. I may check in a few months time and see if it compressed at all with the engine vibes so I can add more:-

And the final product. The barends are torqued down pretty good and look nice. I'll repaint them later on as I'm still not happy. I'm taking the bike touring next week so I couldn't repaint again. They're not too bad:-

A closeup. The barends are in damn tight. The only was I was able to get them out once I'd loosened the bolt was with a slide hammer. Such a useful tool to have around:-

Here is a comparison of the stock versus new barends:-

It works well - I've ridden at high revs, and higher speeds and the vibrations are much reduced. I rode for several days on a mini-tour that got rained off. I did 150-200 miles a day with no issues caused because of the vibrations. I'm going to keep an eye out for nicer, heavier bar-ends even so.



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