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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So, I've always liked the tall sissy bars that were found on bikes of yesteryear, and I've considered putting some sort of taller sissy bar on my '93 Convertible. Not super tall, but taller than what I typically see on FXRs, which are 16" or less I believe.... on the few that still choose to keep one. AS tough as this year has been, and not really being in financial position to make great progress on major improvements to her this winter, I have had this sissy bar project in my head about daily.

Mind you, I know this is all a matter of taste, and in the scheme of things.... it's a pretty small thing. I'm just rambling.... maybe putting it down in black and white will help me see it from another perspective and/or help me decide on the direction would be best to go.

First, this is how she sets now...., and I have a pad for that sissy, it's just not on at the moment.
20201227_125152.jpg



I have the LeatherPros detachable bags also, but am leaning towards only using them on longer road trips (more clothes than I can pack in the backpack), and grocery runs. My favorite tote bag though has become a 5.11 Rush 72 backpack. It has plenty of compartments and size that I can easily set it up for whatever my day holds.... lunch, drinks, gym clothes & towel/s, clean change of clothes, swim fins & paddles, etc., etc.

Another backpack I use most days is my Kline Tools tool backpack. Now, this backpack does not usually move job locations often. It goes in with me on the first day of the project and remains until I get a lay off for job completion, or I drag up and move on down the road. Even then, I have the pickup I can use for that, unless they lay me off on a day I'm on the FXR. So, I "could' need to carry the tools with me on the bike, but it's not likely/ It would be more of a desire to be able to comfortably carry them, should I decide I want to.

I am a 'Union' electrician, and have spent many of my years traveling from local to local for work, all over the US. Being 'Union" means I have to show up at a local and sign a list, then as jobs come available, they are offered to the 1st on the list, and they keep going down the list until each job is filled. Come this spring, I can easily see myself going on a book signing trip on the FXR, instead of the Tacoma. No tools needed. Just the 5.11 and maybe the LeatherPros, depending on how long of a trip I want to take, & where the good projects are likely to be this year. Anyway, I am rambling....

If just the tool bag is loaded.....
20201230_125051_LI.jpg


Not much support from the current Sissy bar.

20201230_125243.jpg


I assume setting the tools towards the passenger seat is better than setting it further towards the rear, on the luggage rack itself.

20201230_125803.jpg


With the 5.11 Tactical bag.

Ya, I'm pretty sure I would not like cruising the highways and/or turnpikes loaded up like this.

As I have thought more and more, I am now leaning towards just removing the sissy bar, so I can lay and strap whichever or both of the bags down horizontally, instead of vertically (as pictured above). That would have to give a better load / weight disbursement, right? Less wind resistance as well?

So, it would be closer to something like this (when no bags are loaded)...
20201230_123651_LI (2).jpg


Functionally, I think this is likely a good solution....
As far as "Form"?? I'm not so sure.

That luggage rack looks fine, in my opinion, as designed with a sissy bar. Without the bar though, it leaves a pretty decent gap between the seat and itself. Also, one would have to figure what to do with the little slots where the sissy bar slides into. Without the sissy, the rack also seems just very 'square (rectangle)' and comes to an end abruptly. It might look better with one of the bobtails this way??? That would be a less than cost effective way to deal with issue.

There is the stubby backrest, but that would still be too tall, an would interfere with laying the bags down.

I very much like the rack V-STRUM used on his, however that does not offer even a hint of having a passenger while running about town, and I like having a rear seat also, just in case....

Maybe I am overthinking it, and a tall Sissy would be the better way??

Anyway, I am up late, thinking too much, and just thought I would throw it out here...
 

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So it sounds like going with a 20'' bar would better support the backpacks. You can always switch bars in and out if you don't need the tall one at the moment. My small luggage rack is more to fill the void left by using no pillion pad, it's not very functional since it sits only an inch over the rear fender. It's very easy for anything mounted on it to rub the paint on the fender. When I want to carry anything back there on a trip I reinstall the pillion seat and a quick detach sissy bar. I have Leatherlyke bags that I keep on the bike 99% of the time.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
A 20" is what I had been considering, yes. Although, that still wouldn't give support to the top of the backpack, as they are closer to 20ish" tall themselves. Not that they would have to go completely to the top, but the sissy's measurements do extend below the seat/rack tops about 5". Did HD ever make a 20"? I've seen them come up on fleabay now and then. Just always figured they were a Chinese knockoff. I would think a bit wider bar than HD offers may be beneficial. So... I may want to go custom??

The idea of quick detaching a sissy bar I do like. The only sissy quick detach system for the FXR I am aware of (aftermarket), I think, would detach the current luggage rack also, which would not be acceptable to me.

I hadn't realized that your rack was so close to your tin by looking at photos and the video. It is such a great looking ride. Obviously well loved and cared for.
 

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I'd go with the 20" sissy bar - with a bag on the back seat, you can lean against it on those long rides you are planning. There are two screws on each side, right? Easy to swap tall for short when you get where you are going.

As far as aerodynamics, it won't matter, because you are bigger than the bag, and have a windshield. And packing smartly, you'll get used to the weight. Put tools in the saddlebags and clothes in the pack.
 
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It's all about effectively securing your load without scratching the paint & chrome.
Removing the sissy bar and attaching the bag horizontally will probably require some straps/bungies rubbing somewhere you don't want 'em to.
I would fab or have someone else fab a taller sissy bar. Easy to do. It doesn't have to be square stock, I have one made of round stock and it secures fine.
I gave up caring about my paint and now I'm a free man! haha

 

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Discussion Starter #8
I follow this girl on insta. she has a taller one on her fxr. http://instagr.am/p/CIHEkieB_ii/
I think I saw a video she made, on youtube, That's got the 111" with the six speed Baker? Looks to be a nice ride. I don't know how she has the gearing set up, but I bet she rarely, if ever, is gonna need the top one with that set up.

That sissy looks good on hers.

Removing the sissy bar and attaching the bag horizontally will probably require some straps/bungies rubbing somewhere you don't want 'em to.
Maybe. I could definitely see it happening some day when I am running late/in a hurry/not paying attention. You have the bobbed tail on yours, which I think my style of luggage rack might look good on, but probably has much less room to maneuver ratchet straps and bungees between the frame and itself than the rounder fender allows. That is a good point though, which I hadn't really thought about.

I think between the rack itself, the chromed steel tail light doomaflotchy thingamajigs that move the tail blinkers off of the fender itself (these actually seem pretty strong to me), and the mounting studs for the LeatherPros, strapping places/anchor points should be 'just about' covered. If I engineered a way to install one more strapping spot on each side, say where the OEM bags attached towards the upper front mount, I'm pretty sure it would be well covered for most every imaginable situation. Of course, we already know the original design was a fail, with the well nuts continually working themselves loose. I would have a hard time bringing myself to drill them out though.

I'd go with the 20" sissy bar - with a bag on the back seat, you can lean against it on those long rides you are planning. There are two screws on each side, right? Easy to swap tall for short when you get where you are going.

As far as aerodynamics, it won't matter, because you are bigger than the bag, and have a windshield. And packing smartly, you'll get used to the weight. Put tools in the saddlebags and clothes in the pack.
I agree... with the sissy bar, it could be easier to rig up a back rest for longer rides. With the bags I'm currently using, they would need some augmenting with something else though, as they just don't create a backrest situation themselves. I think this scenario is one of the better reasons for the sissy. That and the one gallon, 21" tall thermos I keep iced tea & take to work during the HOT summers. I'm not confident the lid will stay screwed tight, vibrating on its side, cruising down the highway. Much easier to just strap it standing upright to a sissy.

I had thought about how the tools would be better off lower, but to be completely honest.... it just won't happen. Either I will get laid off/drag up with the red ass on a day I don't have the bags on, or it will be an incredible time consuming pain in the ars to unload all the pockets of tools inside, balance out the load some, reload the backpack with all the tools to their respectful places, etc. I'm just not gonna go thru that. Agreed though that the center of gravity will would likely be best served in the side bags. Secondly, by laying horizontal, and lastly vertical. Thankfully though, carrying that tool backpack, at all, should be a rare occurrence. I do want to be prepared to be able to carry it safely though, just in case.




So what kind of shop do I go to to have one made? Just a welding shop? I've got a chrome guy close. so that is a non issue. And I've even got a pretty good idea of how I would want it to look, should I actually decide to go this route.

Talking it though with you guys, it does seem to make sense, as 99.99+% of my planned riding will not have the tool backpack,... just so long as I can safely attach it to the sissy if / when I do.
 

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Easy to make with a torch, vice, piece of round pipe and hacksaw but probably any welding/fab shop.
 

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I typically ride solo with a very low HD sissy bar that “fits” Cosmetically with my Corbin Gunfighter seat. But I have a taller one that I install along with a HD luggage rack behind it for the occasional trip. A FXR friend cut a piece of thick plexiglass That attaches to his HD luggage rack to make it wider and longer but he also only installs it for a trip.
 
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I have seen aftermarket studs (bolts) to replace those on the fender struts. A chrome stud sticks out about an inch for attaching bungee hooks instead of under the edge of the fender.2¢

Sent from my moto g(7) supra using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have seen aftermarket studs (bolts) to replace those on the fender struts. A chrome stud sticks out about an inch for attaching bungee hooks instead of under the edge of the fender.2¢

Sent from my moto g(7) supra using Tapatalk
These that I have are actually for the LeatherPros Bags. They have a groove cut in them, which are slots for the bags' brackets, and I'm thinking I can anchor there.

I typically ride solo with a very low HD sissy bar that “fits” Cosmetically with my Corbin Gunfighter seat. But I have a taller one that I install along with a HD luggage rack behind it for the occasional trip. A FXR friend cut a piece of thick plexiglass That attaches to his HD luggage rack to make it wider and longer but he also only installs it for a trip.
I'm seeing here that switching back and forth of the sissy/rack is much more common than I had originally thought.

.
 

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I would look for a used HD sissy bar on ebay.
 
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Discussion Starter #14
I would look for a used HD sissy bar on ebay.
I haven't seen a 20" there in a while. Not in good shape.

Unless I'm mistaken, which is all the time (just ask my ex wife, she will tell you), Sportster and FXR are the same size. Am not sure of others that might fit, in order to expand my search criteria.

What is the tallest made by HD?
 

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I have swapped them around on my 79 FXS, 82 FXR, and 98 FXD. But you should ask the seller for measurements because one I bought cheap was too wide.
 
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Discussion Starter #17

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Discussion Starter #20
I've made my decisions, and have a sissy bar and sissy pad design hammered out. Am looking for someone to make the sissy pad pans (metal). Can anyone recommend someone who does that sort of work?

I was previously given a name of a company in Florida, but the guy has not responded to any emails or messages on his FB page.
 
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