Thursday, July 26, 2012

Bark Busting

On Tuesday night I got to spend some quality time out in the shed fitting the newest (when will it ever end) farkle to the mighty Vee.

Bark Busters
The DL came with standard Suzuki hand guards.  These are great for helping keep the weather off my mitts but only offer minimal protection to the levers and the other stuff that hangs off the bars.  I've been lucky that I haven't broken a clutch lever on the two occasions that the bike has decided to have a lie down so it's about time I added this farkle.

A couple of scratches but still doing the job
 The Bark busters combine some quite solid aluminium crash bars and plastic hand guards.  There are generic Bark Busters to suit a range of bikes but in my case there is a DL specific item which means less issues fitting with all cabling and plumbing staying in it's original position and the bracketing fitting over or around it.  There are also two options for the hand guards: the Storm and the VPS.  The Storms are slightly larger hand guards while the VPS offer a little bit of adjust ability.  I chose the VPS.

How's it all go together?
The first simple job was to set the top portion of the hand guards in the position I wanted.  As it's winter I decided I wanted the guards as big as possible.  The top section simply screws to the lower and as it's all just plastic then I don't think that you'd want to be altering the position too much...

Fitting the top spoiler
Still not quite as big as the OEM items
Next up I had to remove the standard guards and the bar ends from the bike and start installing the brackets and guards.  The kit comes with replacement bar end weights that have quite a neat system to hold them in.  There is also the option of adding additional Bark Buster bar end weights on the outside of the aluminium crash bar.  I didn't buy these but if the new bar ends are not heavy enough I may notice more vibration through the handle bars so I may have to consider the additional weights.

Initially I had a few issues fitting the left hand side unit.  This was due to not quite knowing how everything was supposed to go together and the position of my heated grip controller.  I ended up slowing down, having a play with the RHS and once I had got that sorted then the LHS wasn't a big deal after all.

A bit of protection for that clutch lever now eh?
Bracket fits on just to the right of the mirror and grip controller mount
RHS - a piece of cake!
Once everything was installed but not tightened I fussed around getting everything in the proper position before finally tightening everything up and fitting the guards.

and the right...
And so after about an hour of mucking around they were on and looking the business.  Now I just hope that I never need them...


  1. Very nice. Look good on the bike. Do you think you might paint the bright hardware black where it meets the handlebars? How are the stock weights? Will you need more?

    1. Yes, I did consider painting everything black - about 5 mins after bolting everything down.

      I've now done quite a big ride with the Bark Busters on and I don't think I need the extra weights. Bike feels fine on and off road.