What are highway bars? What's their purpose?
Also known as freeway bars, engine guards, or crash bars, these are aftermarket motorcycle accessories that have more than one purpose. Mainly, they're installed on either side of your bike to protect your engine in case of a knock-over or a low-speed crash. They can also serve as mounts for an extra pair of pegs or foot rest if you want to stretch your legs during a long ride. Depending on the type of freeway bars you install, they can also house extra lights.
Do I need to install highway bars on my bike?
Freeway bars are not required accessories, but they do offer several benefits. However, keep in mind that these accessories, once installed, can make your bike bulky, especially on the sides. You also have to consider the fact that if you install these bars, you'll have to move your feet more in order to shift or use the rear brakes.
What should I consider when shopping for highway bars?
The most important thing to consider when looking for freeway bars is the material. Because these accessories will be constantly exposed to plenty of damaging elements such as road debris, grime, changing weather, and moisture, they'll have to be made of a tough material. A good material is triple chrome-plated steel tubing. With a triple coat of chrome, the bars are well protected from corrosion and are highly resistant to minor dings. And because the tube is made of steel, it will give enough protection to you and your engine in case of an accident. Another thing to consider is the fit. Make sure it matches your bike's specs to a T to make installation a breeze.
Is it easy to install highway bars on my bike?
As long as you're equipped with the right tools and with basic repair skills, installing engine bars should be easy. Keep in mind that most bars today are designed to be easily installed with basic tools such as a socket and a thread lock. Although exact installation instructions will depend on your bike's make and model, you basically just have to loosen first the front bolts of your existing footrest. Then bolt the bars onto the front part of the foot rest. Using clamps reinforced with lock tight, attach the bars onto your bike's frame. Install the spacer on the rear footrest bolts and tighten all the bolts. Installation process might take an hour or so, depending on the level of your repair skills.
How do I remove unsightly scratches from my bike's chrome highway bars?
Get your hands on a bottle of chrome polish, steel wool, and a microfiber cloth. Put polish on the cloth and wipe it across the scratched surface. Then dip the steel wool onto the bottle of polish and rub it over the damaged area. Keep on buffing until the scratches disappear. Wipe away excess polish with a microfiber cloth. Your bike's safety bars should look good as new. If the scratches won't disappear after buffing the surface or if they're deep and big, you'll need to bring your bike to a body shop.