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I have a new to me 03 1800 C, very modified BEAST. The hydraulic clutch, position of the bars, distance etc. are all to blame, I'm sure. It's been suggested that I switch out the grips from 2" chrome slip ons to 1" more comfortable grips and consider changing the clutch / break levers back to OEM or something smaller / more rounded. These appear to be pretty flat / wide, we rotated them up so I'm not cutting off the tips of my fingers but it's still a gloves only job! I have a friend who is pretty mechanical and all his ideas sound really expensive, plus the guy who I bought the bike from did such a beautiful job modifying this bike that I'm not sure I should be changing out the handlebars, etc.

Description of my pain: severe strain / pain from below my left ear, down my neck into my shoulder and deltoid is burning. It started about 2 weeks ago and I started riding my VTX about 6 weeks ago. Chiropractor says I need to give it a rest and just ride my Vulcan 900, lift weights to strengthen my back and arm so I can tame that BEAST. I'm a 5'9" woman, not a little person by any means but I'm also not 6'3" like the previous owner. I will add a picture later (at work right now) but you will see that I have forward controls, a fairly straight handlebar just a slight V and a deep low corbin gun fighter seat that keeps me low - so ya all of this keeps me reaching!

Any suggestions are appreciated!
Added pic what do you think? Sell to a 6'+ guy and let him enjoy the beast the way he as created or start spending $$ and what would you do first and least expensive? Chiro Massage Therapist says its my rotator cuff that is causing me the most pain.
1836028.jpg
 

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I would start with some handlebar risers to reduce the reach in you arms while riding. Bring the bars closer to you.

Once you do that, a bakrest might help as well.

Sorry to say it, but you may end up having to ditch the forward controls. Or modify them to bring them back closer to you (expensive if you can't do your own fabrication work).
 

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I have a new to me 03 1800 C, very modified BEAST. The hydraulic clutch, position of the bars, distance etc. are all to blame, I'm sure. It's been suggested that I switch out the grips from 2" chrome slip ons to 1" more comfortable grips and consider changing the clutch / break levers back to OEM or something smaller / more rounded. These appear to be pretty flat / wide, we rotated them up so I'm not cutting off the tips of my fingers but it's still a gloves only job! I have a friend who is pretty mechanical and all his ideas sound really expensive, plus the guy who I bought the bike from did such a beautiful job modifying this bike that I'm not sure I should be changing out the handlebars, etc.

Description of my pain: severe strain / pain from below my left ear, down my neck into my shoulder and deltoid is burning. It started about 2 weeks ago and I started riding my VTX about 6 weeks ago. Chiropractor says I need to give it a rest and just ride my Vulcan 900, lift weights to strengthen my back and arm so I can tame that BEAST. I'm a 5'9" woman, not a little person by any means but I'm also not 6'3" like the previous owner. I will add a picture later (at work right now) but you will see that I have forward controls, a fairly straight handlebar just a slight V and a deep low corbin gun fighter seat that keeps me low - so ya all of this keeps me reaching!

Any suggestions are appreciated!
You are my exact height. I had the same but not so intense issues. I had stock risers and bars. I installed Scootworks PhatII Risers on mine and problem is resolved. Give it a rest??? No, this simply making the bike fit you.
 

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hmmm......what about?

A pneumatic air shifter? Saw one on a Harley last summer up at the bike shop and it was way cool. Just a small bracket and a cylinder that snapped the shifter up or down (you pick). Guy was a Nam vet with left leg damage and it was a life saver for him. My left leg is my bummer and I have considered that shifter for me. Six2go :D
 

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The symptoms you have are all common with an extended body riding position. The neck, shoulder blade, upper back all get stressed from holding the arms up and out. I had the exact deep burning pain in those areas with a stock setup on long trips. I went to a seat that moved me forward a little and intermediate pullback risers, phat II. They substantially increased the pain free miles and the pain only returned on really long daily miles. So then I went to more aggressive pullback risers, phat 3X, and the miles and days became irrelevant. Today the only things that limit the length of a trip are days and dollars, maybe not in that order.

To have no stress on anything you want a neutral position between your feet, butt, and hands. Might not fit well into a custom bike look but for me its about the riding. A backrest will relieve some of the tension too but IMO it is usually a compensation for a not yet achieved neutral position, unless maybe if you have an unhealthy back. But when you get a good position at least for me the backrest is not needed. I had a backrest for my X and realized I didn't need it anymore after leaving it at a gas station in the Yukon when I removed the seat cover and not realizing it was gone until 6 hours later. Continued to ride home and never missed it other than for its resale value.

For some reason I hate this picture but it is the best sideview I have showing a relaxed arm/hand position.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Added pic

A picture would help with what kind of bars and controls you have too
Thanks - I've added the pic that shows bars, levers (in a more downward position than they are now, we rotated them upwards a bit), FCs and seat position. I also have the corbin 2up that I'm going to put on it today (with backrest).
 

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OK, you have the stock Honda clutch reservoir so that is not going to change the pull on the lever. Different levers may help
The bars are in a class called "Drag Bars" and they put the rider in a severe forwards position like drag racers do by laying on the tank. Well, that's great for rides lasting a 1/4 mile. Find a set of OEM bars and buy some 6 inch pullback risers from Aeromach.com or Rivco. This is what most C model riders do to make their bike more comfortable
 

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Discussion Starter #9
First I'm in awe or your experience and thank you!

The symptoms you have are all common with an extended body riding position. The neck, shoulder blade, upper back all get stressed from holding the arms up and out. I had the exact deep burning pain in those areas with a stock setup on long trips. I went to a seat that moved me forward a little and intermediate pullback risers, phat II. They substantially increased the pain free miles and the pain only returned on really long daily miles. So then I went to more aggressive pullback risers, phat 3X, and the miles and days became irrelevant. Today the only things that limit the length of a trip are days and dollars, maybe not in that order.

To have no stress on anything you want a neutral position between your feet, butt, and hands. Might not fit well into a custom bike look but for me its about the riding. A backrest will relieve some of the tension too but IMO it is usually a compensation for a not yet achieved neutral position, unless maybe if you have an unhealthy back. But when you get a good position at least for me the backrest is not needed. I had a backrest for my X and realized I didn't need it anymore after leaving it at a gas station in the Yukon when I removed the seat cover and not realizing it was gone until 6 hours later. Continued to ride home and never missed it other than for its resale value.

For some reason I hate this picture but it is the best sideview I have showing a relaxed arm/hand position.
Thank you so much for your reply. Yes the most obvious fix is going to be to replace the handlebars and bring them closer - the question is do I want to do that on THIS bike. I am not married to it yet as I've only had it since Jan and if it doesn't fit me maybe he was meant for someone else - he is so beautiful. I might need to get myself a 1300 VTX. When I found my beast on the VTXOA forum, I found a 1300 for one of my girlfriends and she bought it off a member in TN.. anyway we are all headed to bike week and she is going to let me ride her 1300 VTX and it's set up stock with some really nice gear but no crazy mods like mine (not sure how crazy they are but there is a lot of money in my bike that I don't want to take off).
Back to being in awe! - I'm from Vancouver BC Canada and not only have you done all 50 states but you have done almost all the Canadian provinces too! wow ... I'm planning my first out of state ride this summer. I want to go up to Ohio and ride back through all the scenic roads home to Tampa, FL. BUT I need to be sure I'm comfortable. I have a great Vulcan 900 but I want a few more CCs! ha ha oh I think i have the same bags on my Vulcan as you did on your VTX, Boss Bags??
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks

OK, you have the stock Honda clutch reservoir so that is not going to change the pull on the lever. Different levers may help
The bars are in a class called "Drag Bars" and they put the rider in a severe forwards position like drag racers do by laying on the tank. Well, that's great for rides lasting a 1/4 mile. Find a set of OEM bars and buy some 6 inch pullback risers from Aeromach.com or Rivco. This is what most C model riders do to make their bike more comfortable
Thank you for responding ... I'll look into it and I'm sure a set of used OEM bars won't be that expensive. Or maybe i'll buy a Victory Cross Country ;) is that what you are riding now?
 

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Thank you for responding ... I'll look into it and I'm sure a set of used OEM bars won't be that expensive. Or maybe i'll buy a Victory Cross Country ;) is that what you are riding now?
You're welcome and yes I am on a Vic XC now. Great touring Vtwin touring bike :mrgreen:
 

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First of all, you have a beautiful bike but it's not set up for long distance riding by a 5'9" rider. The bars might have been fine for the 6'3 previous owner.

The seat might be setting you too far back as well
 

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Consider a set of stock 1800 R bars on your C. Wife's 1300 C has the same "drag " bars and it sucks to ride it. The R bars will lessen the reach you have now. YMMV
 

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stinger ~ as said before, make the Beast fit YOU. Obviously, there was something there which grabbed your attention and talked to you when you bought it. Don't jump in and start major overhauling with mod changes, one thing at a time to find that neutral position that will make you happy. Good luck ~
 

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Those bars look nice but would be a killer on long rides. A set of bars off of an R model and 4 or 6 inch risers would bring your reach back considerably. I have an S model and the 4 inch risers did wonders for my reach and neck and shoulder pain.
 

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Lots of good advise above. My C has R bars, N risers and rerouted cables. Much more comfortable. Added the Honda heated grips. Not fancy to look at but warm and comfortable.
 

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Or maybe we could just trade.;) After all, I'm 6'4" 245# I think it'll fit me.
 
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