With its attractive design and muscular motor, it’s no surprise that the Harley Davidson Street Glide enjoys immense popularity among touring motorcycle riders. But if you’re one of those rider who find the factory fairing too restrictive, never fear: It is possible to make yours a Street Glide without fairing – transforming it into a more open ride like a Road King.
In this article, we’ll dig deeper into the potential of customizing your bike and provide you with useful tips on how to do it.
Why Remove the Fairing?
Before we explore the nuances of customizing your Street Glide without fairing, let’s analyze why you may decide to take off its fairing. Quite a few motorcyclists prefer the appearance of other open-air touring motorcycles such as Road King without any kind of protection from wind and elements.
Although fairings can add an attractive dimension to the front of a bike, some riders may find them cumbersome or unsightly. Furthermore, taking off the fairing often eliminates buffeting from wind – an issue that has been known to occur among long-distance motorcycle riders.
Taking the fairing off can give you a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to customize your motorcycle. By replacing it with custom pieces such as fenders, headlights, and handlebars; you get to showcase your individuality by crafting something unique that reflects who you are. With this, no two bikes will ever look alike.
Can You Remove the Fairing from a Street Glide?
Absolutely, you can take off the fairing on a Street Glide. However, it’s not as simple as unbolting a few screws – the fairing plays an essential role in the bike’s structure and houses electrical components like speakers, lights and gauges. Removing it requires substantial modifications to be made to your ride; thus this project is no task for amateurs or those with a weak constitution.
How to Modify Your Street Glide
If you’re committed to make your bike a Street Glide without fairing, these are the steps required:
Step 1: Disconnect the Electrical Components
Before you can detach the fairing, it is essential to disconnect all electrical components connected to it. This includes but is not limited to: your stereo, speakers, turn signals and speedometer. It’s critical that each wire be carefully labelled as they are disconnected so that reconnection will become a simple task afterwards.
Step 2: Remove the Fairing
After you unplug all of the electrical parts, carefully remove the fairing. This requires removing a few bolts and screws that connect it to the bike. Be sure to take your time while doing this so as not to damage any components within the bike’s bodywork.
Step 3: Install a New Headlight
Now that the fairing has been removed, you must promptly install a new headlight. This is because the Street Glide’s stock light comes pre-installed in its designated casing and requires replacement once taken out. You have countless aftermarket headlights to pick from which will perfectly match your ride’s aesthetic appeal.
Step 4: Install New Turn Signals
Installing up-to-date turn signals is necessary to replace the old ones previously attached to the fairing. From a selection of aftermarket options, you can easily find one that will match your bike’s aesthetics.
Step 5: Reconnect the Electrical Components
After installing the new headlight and turn signals, it’s time to start reattaching all of the electrical components that you previously detached in Step 1. Make sure to use your labels as a guide when reconnecting these pieces so that everything is connected properly.
Step 6: Install New Handlebars
Now that the old handlebars have been removed, it’s time to set up their replacements. Start by carefully sliding the new ones onto the stem of your bike and make sure they are properly aligned with its front wheel. Afterward, tighten each of these bolts in a criss-cross pattern until you’re positive that everything is secure and at an ideal position. Using a torque wrench will guarantee that you don’t over-tighten them and damage either component – just remember to follow manufacturer specifications when tightening.
Step 7: Reattach Brake and Shift Levers
After the handlebars are firmly installed to the stem, it’s time to reinstall your brake and shift levers. Make sure they line up with the bars then slide them into position. Tightly affix the bolts that keep them in place, ensuring that you don’t over-tighten as this can be detrimental for both performance and safety.
Step 8: Install Grips or Tape
For handlebars accompanied with grips, attach them firmly to the bars and secure the end caps. If tape is necessary for installation, begin at one end of the handlebars and wrap it securely along its full length. Make sure that no part remains uncovered by tape.
Step 9: Test the Handlebars
With the grips or tape settled, it’s time to assess your handlebars. Once seated on your bike, readjust them if you deem it necessary so that everything is comfortably and conveniently within reach with a smooth operation of the brake and shift levers. After all this has been verified, take a ride in an ample space to guarantee that both secureness and comfort have been achieved.
Final Thoughts On A Street Glide Without Fairing
Replacing handlebars on a bike may initially seem intimidating, however it is relatively straightforward and easy. With the right tools and bit of patience anyone can take their time to follow these steps in order to replace the handlebars on their bike with ease. It’s always important to pay attention while replacing them following manufacturer’s recommended torque specifications for safety measures as well as security purpose.