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Custom Fit Apes to Your Sled in 20 minutes or less

By the Prince Najar with photos by Commander Edge

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One rider dropped his kickstand after he roared up the entrance of Widowmaker Custom Design and Repair in Rougemont, NC and complained about his reach to the handlebars. He had gotten measured for the handlebars with his feet on the floor instead of on his forward controls. And when he rides with the forward controls, his natural position is an inch away.

He explained his Ape Hangers were a little too far from his grasp while running through the mountain passes and switchbacks around his local Appalachian Mountains. He’d looked at a few options but they weren’t feasible or cost too much.
So did Hank Thibodeau Owner of Widowmaker have a low cost option? Why yes, yes he did. What Widowmaker’s master mechanic came up with was a set of angled bushings for less than $100 from LA Choppers.

#1 Bushings picture
Changing the angle of the bushing can eliminate buying replacement risers, ape hangers, tee-bars, seats or triple trees. Hank pulled out a 5 degree angled riser bushing kit allowing the bars to move forward or back 5 degrees from stock. So the kit will move a set of 15-inch apes back towards the rider approximately 1.20 inches.

The downside of the change is that you are replacing vibration absorbing polyurethane bushings with T-6 aluminum. So, the rider may feel and increase amount of vibration being transmitted through his hands. Although, if you run soft leather or rubber grips, they will remove some of the vibration.

Changing out the bushings is a snap. You’ll need:
• Ratchet with 3/8 Allen wrench on a socket
• Small standard screw driver

Picture #2
To start, unbolt the handlebars from the triple trees one at a time.
Picture #3
Remove the polyurethane bushings with a small then standard screwdriver.

Picture #4
A screw that secured a ground had popped through the triple trees so Hank ground down the bushing to a taper to make It fit.
To angle bars towards the rider: install top riser adapters with timing marks facing toward the front wheel. Install bottom riser adapters in opposite direction.
In about 20 minutes you are good to go on a test ride. Note: Check handlebar clearance before operating.

After Hank took a ride on the Dyna, he said the 5-degree angled bushings increased pullback and made a more comfortable riding position for the rider.

Atomic Bob is a master.
Atomic Bob is a master.

Picture #5


I also asked him about his lid and he mentioned the Bell Helmet MX-9 Adventure was super-light and roomy. He had gotten Atomic Bob to do one of his monster designs on the side of it. It looked like just the ticket for a Dyna.

We understood why he was in a hurry.
We understood why he was in a hurry.



LA Choppers

Atomic Bob

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