You ride what?? Setting up a Sportster for long-distance rides

by on August 4, 2007
in Mods & Equipment

the picky bitch sportsterI was talking about the Estrogen Ride at work the other day and one of the guys asked me “how in the world” do I have any fun traveling long-distance on a Sportster? It’s true that the Sporty is not really intended to be a touring bike, but mine has been set up with several Harley Davidson parts that make it a whole lot better for road trips than the stock machine. I was fortunate that most of these were already on the bike when I bought it, but they are all things I would have added myself anyway.

Here’s a list of the stuff on the bike that specifically contribute to its long-distance capabilities, at least for me:

  • Forward controls kit
  • Detachable SuperSport Windshield
  • Buckhorn handlebar kit (including longer cables)
  • Chrome Luggage rack

With all of these Harley parts and the other stuff I’ve added to the bike, it rides as well as any pre-2004 (non-rubber mount) Sporty can ride. Of course, I love to shop so I have a few Harley accessories on the bike as well that don’t affect it’s touring suitability – but they sure do add to my enjoyment of the bike:

  • Leather tank bra
  • Live to Ride primary cover
  • Chrome oil tank cover
  • Straight pipes

Finally, I’ve got a few other HD items still on my wishlist (hey, birthday’s comin’ up – a girl can dream, right??):

  • Chrome engine guards with highway pegs
  • Color matched hard bags
  • Two-up Reach seat with passenger backrest
  • Chrome master cylinder cover
  • Chrome hand levers’
  • Chrome belt guard
  • “Buckshot” air cleaner cover
  • And, I want to try mini-ape handlebars instead of the buckhorns (what can I say, I love the look!)

Of course, none of this would be necessary if I would just buckle and trade the Sporty in for a Low Rider, but that’s a whole ‘nother can-o-worms!

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