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I've had problems off and on with my right arm for a while, especially when I had to use a computer a lot. Probably carpel tunnel -- aching wrist, pain shooting up arm, tender elbow joint, sore shoulder. But I've had a big flare up lately on my Road King with stock handlebars. It started when I was in LA a few weeks ago and had to use the throttle splitting lanes in stop-and-go traffic for several hours. Now, when I ride for just a few hours my arm hurts like hell. I have cruise control and it helps a lot. I probably couldn't continue riding without it. But that doesn't help on back roads and in traffic, which comprises about 50 percent of my riding.

I'm thinking that new handlebars may help. When I'm riding, my hands are angled at about 30 degrees out from my forearms. When I'm throttling the angle puts my wrist in a slight twist. I'm thinking that if my wrists were straight with my forearms it would reduce this twist and maybe give me some relief.

Has anybody had this problem and solved it with proper handlebars? I'm thinking that I need straighter bars with risers or something that can give me the perfect reach and angle. I don't want ape hangers, just something that looks near stock but with different configuration. Problem is, the descriptions of handlebars in catalogs don't give the angle of the hand grips in relation to the centerline of the bike. I'm thinking I need about 90 degrees, i.e. just about straight out from the bike. And many dealers don't have a very good selection of bars in stock to try out.

Any help appreciated. I'm heading out for the Calif. HOG rally this weekend and I'm kind of dreading the pain I'm going to have to suffer through to have a good time.
 

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banal
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I had a bad tendonitis problem with my left wrist for several months. Flexing my wrist sideways was excruciating. Got a couple of cortisone shots right in the wrist that helped a bit, but for the most part of the summer of 06 I was riding with my left wrist in a brace. It was pretty awkward, but better than riding in a cage.

On the the handlebars: That was right about the time I traded my beach bars for Wild1 model 513 baby apes, with 8-1/2" rise. They put your wrist in almost a perfectly neutral position, just right out from your body. But, this is not as you describe straight out from the bike, because your arms bend outward to reach the grips, which are wider than your body. If you want "straight out from the bike," which I infer to be close to parallel to the top part of the engine guard, then you should get the stock Heritage Softail handlebars. I had those some time back but changed because I thought they were too much just out from the bike.

Good luck.
 

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I put the cyclesmiths 13" on my electraglide they are not quite parralel but close it really helped with the tendenitis in my right elbow there is no way I could go far with the stock bars the smiths are wide at around 37" so with a slight angle to me they are perfect with a really natural hand position,they come in 10 ,13 and 16" it just so happened the local indy had them in stock,but I believe they are similiar to wild ones can probably compare specs at j&p cycles website they sell both. good luck Tom.
 

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Give the stock Heritage Softail handlebars a look. The Road King Police models come with that set of handlebars. It's a nice neutral position for your hands - not too much twist.

T. Mealer
Flowerfield, IL
 

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Bars can help

I went to raised pull back bars on an ultra. Much better! I think since everyone is so different, you should try all kinds. For me, the improvement was dramatic and immediate.
 

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CarbideDude said:
I had a bad tendonitis problem with my left wrist for several months. Flexing my wrist sideways was excruciating. Got a couple of cortisone shots right in the wrist that helped a bit, but for the most part of the summer of 06 I was riding with my left wrist in a brace. It was pretty awkward, but better than riding in a cage.

On the the handlebars: That was right about the time I traded my beach bars for Wild1 model 513 baby apes, with 8-1/2" rise. They put your wrist in almost a perfectly neutral position, just right out from your body. But, this is not as you describe straight out from the bike, because your arms bend outward to reach the grips, which are wider than your body. If you want "straight out from the bike," which I infer to be close to parallel to the top part of the engine guard, then you should get the stock Heritage Softail handlebars. I had those some time back but changed because I thought they were too much just out from the bike.

Good luck.
I'm thinking of doing the same thing - going to the WO513. Just to get a different riding position and look for the bike. My WO504 are still comfortable but I think it could improve.

Any idea how much longer the throttle, clutch, brake line has to be?
 

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banal
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thatoldbike said:
I'm thinking of doing the same thing - going to the WO513. Just to get a different riding position and look for the bike. My WO504 are still comfortable but I think it could improve.

Any idea how much longer the throttle, clutch, brake line has to be?
Not sure how they compare to the 504. Mine were a replica of the Wild1 518 RKII bars, but about an inch narrower. The cables had to be lengthened a couple of inches. I have never regretted the 513's, and when I traded from a 2003 to a 2007 that was one of the items I made sure I swapped over before taking delivery.
 

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RB Jones:

If this is something that just started happening, I would recommend you talk to a DR about it. I started with the same kind of problems in Dec 2006. I had already put over a 100,000 miles on the bike so I knew it wasn't the bars. I messed around for 7 months with it and finally got an MRI done on right shoulder and arm. Small tear in the rotator cuff. I have since had physical therapy and am doing exercises to strengthen the muscles to support the shoulder. It's working very good.

A rotator cuff problem won't go away by itself and will not heal up. Only solution is to strengthen other muscles or surgery.
 

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RB,

Had similar problems with the left arm ( I'm left handed). Numbness, pins and needles, in all my fingers but not always simultaneously, shooting pains and a general "ache" through my entire arm and shoulder. Turns out it was damage to the Ulna Nerve in my elbow. Dr's thought it was carpel tunnel then a neck injury etc..etc... Had the nerve test done etc....etc.....

They treat it similarly to the intial stages carpel tunnel. If it's caught in time it'll heal on it's own without the need for surgery.

I had to wear a brace on my elbow at night during sleep. It keeps your arm straight and the pressure off the nerves so it can heal...

During the day keep your arm as straight as possible, take frequent breaks from typing and don't lean on it for any reason. If you're like me you tend to rest your elbow on the edge of the desk or arm of your chair while using your mouse, BIG no-no... I switched hands when using the mouse until it healed...

took about 4 months to heal completely

hope that helps some...
 

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Shaw_2112 said:
RB,

Had similar problems with the left arm ( I'm left handed). Numbness, pins and needles, in all my fingers but not always simultaneously, shooting pains and a general "ache" through my entire arm and shoulder. Turns out it was damage to the Ulna Nerve in my elbow. Dr's thought it was carpel tunnel then a neck injury etc..etc... Had the nerve test done etc....etc.....

They treat it similarly to the intial stages carpel tunnel. If it's caught in time it'll heal on it's own without the need for surgery.

I had to wear a brace on my elbow at night during sleep. It keeps your arm straight and the pressure off the nerves so it can heal...

During the day keep your arm as straight as possible, take frequent breaks from typing and don't lean on it for any reason. If you're like me you tend to rest your elbow on the edge of the desk or arm of your chair while using your mouse, BIG no-no... I switched hands when using the mouse until it healed...

took about 4 months to heal completely

hope that helps some...
On the other hand, I have found that if I operate my mouse with my arm straight, I will definitely develop tennis elbow. Hurts like the dickens. I have to have my arms hanging at my sides when I work at my computer (my job...all day) and my wrists resting below my keyboard or mouse. I also use one of the "broken" Microsoft keyboards which helps my wrist angles when working. I have also been interested in improving my wrist angles on the Ultra. Sound's like the Heritage bars might work...if I can keep the levers out of the batwing's speakers.
 

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A Budy Of Mine Had This Problem And He Put Wild1 Handle Bars On It .i Road It And Its Like Having Power Steering On A Bike .if They Made The Same Bares For My Ultra Theyd Be On It
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks to everyone for the helpful suggestions. I'm going to check out the bars and other devices mentioned. I do have cruise control, which helps a lot when I'm out cruising but obviously doesn't help when I'm in traffic or negotating a lot of curves where constant throttle action is required. I had someone else mention the Heritage bars the other day. As to the rotator cuff, is that something that can go out even if you don't strain it? I don't remember doing anything that would have put the shoulder in a strain. 'Course, it could just be old age creeping up on me?
 

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Sometimes all it takes to tear the rotator cuff is just a wrong turn of the arm. Generally you would notice the pain right then though but not always.
 
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