Kawasaki VN750 Forum banner

1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Anyone have any tips or tricks on straightening bars?

I went down pretty hard last evening and the clutch side of the bar is bent to almost vertical. If you're sitting on the bike and lay your hand across the vertical sections of the bars, that part is supposed to be angled outward. Well my left side is almost straight up and down now.

I rode her home and it didn't feel all that bad, but I don't want to keep riding this way.

Can't pull hard enough with my hands. I thought maybe I could use ratchet straps to pull some way, if I can anchor the bike to oppose the force.

Any ideas?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I've straightened a few myself, but I was stronger and had helpers.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,190 Posts
Spock, I had a slightly bent set, I tried to give for shipping. You could not really see the bend. They went to the scrap yesterday along with the clutch lever I should have saved for al scrap.

I let a friend use my shop and he hauled off all my junk tires, etc.

I LOVE Ride On, so does he.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
A day late and a dollar short, that's me. A month late and thousands of dollars short, that's me too!

I'm glad to hear my recommendation didn't fall short, thanks for letting me know.

Can't edit the title either, lol. Well if I can't straighten the bars, I'll try staightening them too. Arrr-arrr, can ye buy an R, Vanna White?
 

·
R/R = Relocated Redneck
Joined
·
628 Posts
Try loosening the bar clamp, rotate them down towards the tank to about a 45 degree angle, brace your back against the good side and push against the bad. As long as you have the bike on the side stand and you're sitting on it (sideways) without pushing with your legs, you won't push the bike over. Being wedged between the bars should keep them from turning.

Sent from Motorcycle.com Free App
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks Jakzen, I'll go give that a shot, I'm just not too stout these days. Maybe I can do better if I take them off the bike.

I thought about strapping and pulling both sides toward each other, like the old Honda CT70 bars, lol.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
No can do Jakzen, just not enough room. Imagine your hands right in front of your chest or belly, and trying to exert that much pressure away from your body. There's only 9" between the two upright sections of the bars, at my marked measuring point.

Well, 9 1/4" now since ....

With the bike sideways behind my truck, I ran two straps from the bottom 90° bend of the right bar, to the truck bumper. Left side is the bent one.

Both feet on the peg, gave it the heave ho and was able to get 1/4". Trying to figure a way to get more force on it.

I put tape on the bars with marks so I can measure any progress accurately, original measuring for those marks done from a fixed point, the top of the triple tree where the notch is.

Another immovable point to put an opposing strap onto might do it. Have to Rube Goldberg something. Had a 5' spud bar out, but just not enough hands.

Lost a swing arm cap too.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
2,190 Posts
Spock, I think the ATV shops use about a 3' bar that slips tightly over the end of the handlebar.

If bent close to where it mounts to the 'riser', I would probably take them off and turn them upside down. apply medium hammer, small concentrated amounts of heat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
If this doesn't work, they'll have to come off if I don't round up some muscle to help out.

Looks like I'm getting there. May only need another 1/8" or a bit more. After I cool and dry off I'm going to pull a vehicle around and try strapping off it to the bent side and see if I can get that last bit by pulling out and down from the bend beside the left hand grip.

Who'da thought losing weight could be a bad thing? Just don't have enough azz any more, but it seems these bars are softer than most.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,027 Posts
First of all, if you went down pretty hard, there is a good chance that something is bent/broken besides the bars. It is almost certain the fork tubes got tweaked in the clamps, and may be bent as well. If anything is bent of out of alignment, the bike will not be safe to ride. I was going to suggest buying some new stock bars, I didn't realize the cost $80. You might find some good used ones on eBay or at a local cycle salvage yard. If they are bent bad, I would not try to straighten them. They are not made out of the best of metal, and could develop cracks which could cause them to break later.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Nah, I've looked her over good, I know her pretty well since she was wrecked a lot worse when I bought her.

This turned out to be not so hard. After I pulled the lawn tractor around to the bent side, a few quick pulls on a ratchet strap and some half-assed checking with an angle finder, a level, and a tape measure and I think I'm done.

Still need a test ride, but it wasn't riding bad with one side of the bars bent. They didn't come back perfect, but I think they'll be alright for now. When checked with the angle finder, the blade makes contact a little higher on one side, but I've got them out to 9.5" by the marks I made before I started. Could try a tad more toward perfect, but if I overshoot..... Eh, won't cost me anything to try again later if I need to.

I'll dig up some bars this winter maybe. There's a set on Ebay right now for $4.99 and shipping.

Thanks for brainstorming with me.

edit: The test ride was good, could stand a set of bars since the forward/back positioning may be a fraction off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
442 Posts
I would always take them off the bike, too much torque waiting to all go wrong. Put them in a vice and use a bit of scaffold pole or similar. straighten a bit at a time and make sure you don't end up with an "S" bend ! Do not ask me how I know. If it is a big tight bend you may end up with fatigue cracks - best to replace if so.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
It was surprising how little it took to bend them back, they must be relatively soft. They won't take much more tweaking, so I'll replace them when I can. I could weld a motocross style crossbar on them, hey then I could hang a windshield bag on there.

I had double straps on the opposing side, hooked to the pickup truck bumper, but I still pictured the bike on top of me when I gave that first big lunge with both feet on the left peg. Was able to get 1/4" out of that one lunge with just my body weight.

I didn't want to use a pipe over the end because I needed to bend the bottom 90° and not up by the grip. I put the strap from the lawn tractor to the bar just below the bend by the grip and held it with one hand to keep it from slipping up or down, and reached over to the tractor to ratchet with the other hand. Couldn't set it up in reverse because the ratchet interfered with the wiring and clutch lever.

I'd have to say it went well after I found a way to do it. Off the bike is a sure way to do it, but I saved having to disassemble it all and did no damage.

gibbo, you should have seen how I pulled out caved-in quarter panels on my race cars. Insert dent puller hook into panel, connect log chain to dent puller and 4x4 pickup, pull truck, in granny gear and low range, away from race car. Sometimes the car had to be chained to the maple tree. Rube Goldberg would be proud!

Who is this Rube Goldberg I keep mentioning, younger folks might ask? Here's a sample:

 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,944 Posts
I'm with gibbo on this... You should remove the bar from the bike. At the shop we used cheater bars and a bench vise. Sometimes a few blocks of wood in the right spot.
And yeah, there can be an internal fracture in the bar you won't see that could cause the bar to break on you later. My dad (an aviation engineer) said any metal tube that's bent more than 30 degrees should be replaced.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
You must have missed the part where I said they are straight now.

The bars were a long way from being bent 30°.

How do you get an "internal fracture" that can't be seen on a hollow bar this thin?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,944 Posts
You must have missed the part where I said they are straight now.

The bars were a long way from being bent 30°.

How do you get an "internal fracture" that can't be seen on a hollow bar this thin?
Because the bar is chrome plated. Chrome is harder than the steel under it....although more brittle, it is in fact "tougher"...so, the thin layer covering the steel can hide a microscopic crack. So it's possible to have a tiny stress fracture inside the tube that can't be seen from the outside.

But I kinda doubt you did any damage to the bar.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
I do know it's hard to put slight bends in chrome without cracking it. I did run some cotton balls over the chrome and nothing caught.

Probably shouldn't have said I went down hard, but it seemed hard at the time, my shin bone said so. lol
 

·
Bearcat
Joined
·
135 Posts
Glad your ok and u got your bike straightened out. Just my 2 cents, when all else fails, fabricate. Sounds like a good chance to make some custom bars :). You might even come out cheaper than oem replacements if you can find old tubing someone wonts out of the way.

I guess I just like to do things the hard way though;)
 

·
Prowling Tiger
Joined
·
2,048 Posts
You couuld have done it the hard way. Just rubbed it a few times and watch it straighten out on its own...

:rockon:
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top