After an unsuccessful ignition and coils relocation video, I decided it was time to create a How To Change Sportster Handlebars video. A quick and easy Harley Sportster handlebar replacement can dramatically change the look of your motorcycle, and paired with a 2″ tank lift and some new grips, this 1998 Harley-Davidson Sportster got a style refresh that made it look and feel a decade newer. She went from zero to hero, and not only was it easy, but it only cost $80!
This is essentially a handlebar replacement time-lapse with voiceover instructions that let you know what I’m doing and give you some tips along the way. I chose this format rather than a detailed step by step filming, to show viewers what they need to know in a relatively short video compared to others out there.
- Awesome Harley-Davidson Sportster Knurled + Dimpled Drag Bars
- Avon Grips (awesome quality/price + lifetime warranty!)
- Torx Wrench Set (need a T25 and T27)
- Standard Hex Keys (this set includes metrics as well)
- Magnetic Tray (nice to have)
- Lots of Braided Cable Lines for Sportsters (may be necessary depending on the bars you choose)
- CycleErgo (free tool for measuring the ergonomics of your motorcycle)
- Rubber vs. Steel Braided Brake Lines (article)
Before you begin there are a things to keep in mind:
- It’s a good idea to lay a towel or a rag over your gas tank and front fender to avoid any scratches.
- You will need Torx Wrenches, the set I’ve linked to is less than $10.
- You can use a cheap Magnetic Tray to avoid losing screws, it’s also less than $10.
- If you’re replacing your handlebars with Z-Bars or Apes, your current cables may not be long enough and you may need longer ones. If so, you should think about replacing them with Braided Cable Lines.
- If you’re replacing the handlebar on a Harley you’ll need to get a bar that is dimpled or drilled or your cables will not fit.
- A knurled handlebar has grooves that help it from sliding around, a nice to have, but not necessary.
- There are small little pieces inside your throttle that hook up to the cables that get lost easily. If you lose yours, they’re called ferrules and you can buy a ten pack of them here.
For those who can’t watch the video:
- Remove the current hand controls. Use the T25 and T27 from your set of Torx Wrenches.
- There are four torx screws in total: 2 x clamping to the handlebar, 1 x on top of the hand controls, 1 x underneath them.
- Use standard (american) hex keys to remove the clamp holding the handlebar in place and remove old bar.
- Install new bar and replace clamp and bolts.
- Follow the instructions on your grips, make sure you do not mix throttle and clutch side grips.
- Replace controls using your T25 and T27 Torx.
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- A new handlebar can refresh the look of even a 1998 Sportster and make it look a decade newer for only about $80!
- The work can easily be done at home with only some two torx wrenches and a hex key.
- If you want to show your support for the tips, tricks, and info we put out, please Subscribe to our new YouTube channel here.
- If you want advice on what handlebar to get, shoot me an email and I’ll help you find the best fit for your bike.
- Cycle-Ergo can help you understand how your new bar is going to affect your ergonomics on your bike.
- If you haven’t already, watch the video to see how to replace the handlebar on your Harley-Davidson Sportster: