Modification wish list for KTM Duke 390- Part 4: Handlebar risers

While covering rough patches the time required reduces at the same time it gets uncomfortable while seated. Standing on the foot pegs solves the problem. At this position, riding becomes faster and smoother. Comfort is possible only if the rider is able to maintain an erect posture while standing. Thus the next change that I felt necessary was having the handlebar higher.

In my earlier post I had mentioned that in seated position I was hunching a bit towards the handle bar also it was almost impossible to stand comfortably on the bike while traveling rough terrain for long time. The options available were either to install a higher handle bar or to come up with an alternative that would position the existing handlebar higher.

After searching various sources and application of possibilities, I came to a conclusion to retain the existing handlebar and add spacers below to increase the height.

After the research this is what I did and achieved…

Making of the spacers

Made a trip to a local non-ferrous city market to look for aluminum supplier and try to score a solid bar of 32-35mm diameter. Many dealers refused to provide as I was asking for a small length of the bar. One person agreed to give only if I purchased 6inch length minimum. Agreeing to the condition I purchased the aluminum bar of 6inch length and 32mm diameter.

The next step was to get this bar to a correct dimensions that would fit on to the handlebar assembly mounts.

After doing the measurements the desired dimension that I arrived at was 1inch in height and 30mm in diameter. To allow the mounting bolts, a hole was made in the center of 10mm throughout the length. Final finishing was done using fine grit sand paper.

The above mentioned dimensions were cut out of the aluminum bar on a lath machine.

Installation of the Spacers

  1. As demonstrated in the images (1&2), the handlebar assembly was removed from the bike.
  2. The Allen bolts holding the lower part of the frame was removed and used as sample to get same number bolt but 1inch longer.
  3. So the hunt began searching for longer Allen bolts with nylon lock nuts.
  4. The image demonstrates the difference in length between the Allen bolt.
    The Allen bolts
  5. After all the articles were in hand, the assembly was carried out.
  6. The 1inch aluminum distance peaces were positioned below the lower plate of the handlebar assembly and the longer Allen bolts were used to replace the older.
  7. Allen bolts were fastened with a nylon lock nut on both the sides from underneath.
  8. The handlebar was placed back on the mount and the top covering plate was replaced.
  9. The position of the handlebar was determined and final tightening of the four Allen bolts were done.
The final result

Problems Faced

  1. The first problem that I faced and had been experiencing that the clutch cable tends to get pulled every time I turned the handlebar to the left. After the modification it had increased further. Adjusted to a point and next day replaced it with the KTM RC clutch cable that was longer.
  2. The second problem was that the throttle cable was snagging. Same way when turning to left the throttle cable was getting pulled and the engine was revving. I had to reroute the cable below the knuckle guards which solved the problem.
  3. The wiring was also getting hindered, like the throttle cable I rerouted the wires too.

The final out come was much better than from where I had started. I think 1inch increase can be managed but if its possible to increase the height 1.5-2 inches that would be fantastic. I raised only 1inch as later I intend to add ‘Fork Extenders’ but currently I’m dealing with busted fork oil seal.


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