This thing grows! Always click this HOME button to ensure you see the most recent SC posts!

To see older posts, you can either use the date selector in the Blog Archive (RH side), or just click through using the Older Posts link at the bottom of each page.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Nightster Pt V, Canyon Carvers Upgrade

After relocating the speedometer and some other odds and ends on the Joker, I began snooping around for a few easy bolt-on upgrades that fit the rowdy, bar-hopper theme of the bike. I also didn't want to change anything that would fuck me up when I wanted to run the Dragon, and there just didn't seem to be a lot of things left I could do without major effort.

I was thinking about changing the bars, but for running the Dragon, I don't think I want to run apes, or even mini apes. Maybe that works for you, but I like the handling with the flat-track style bars. And I still want a little suspension, so struts and fork mods were out too. I don't just putt along on the Dragon, I run it pretty hard.

I've learned that looking cool doesn't always translate into riding cool, and finding something that fills both reqiurements isn't always easy. Mods to a bike depend entirely on your riding style for your particular scoot. Which brings me back to finding something sorta cool that's also functional.

Well how about FOOTPEGS! 

I never really thought much about footpegs, but I gotta tell you this:  Running that damn Joker bike (it's basically a 2008 Nightster) for any distance makes me want to have a little something that allows me to move my feet around, and the stock pegs just don't offer many options. And because I'm keeping those stock handlebars, I also want to keep the mid-mounted peg location. It works for me. 

So I went back into manufacturers' catalogs, eventually taking a hard look at what DK Customs offered. Their coil relocation kit was a nice piece of hardware, looked great, and the price was right, so they were on the top of the list for another look.

Shazam! DK had all kinds of neat foot pegs, some resembling a damn BEAR TRAP! They might even BE a modified trap!

Each DK model seemed to offer something a little different, so I picked up the phone. A chat with Kevin (He's the "K" in DK) helped me zero in on their Canyon Carvers! I always think it's great to be able to call a company and actually talk to someone who knows what the hell they're talking about. Better yet, someone that understands riding. Kevin's that kind of guy.

Canyon Carvers, Kevin noted, have a smaller footprint than the others, and would give me a little more lean angle before the sparks start flying. I also checked out their blacked-out Stealth Trap pegs, and I still think they'd have been a good choice, but the smaller footprint of the Canyon Carvers was the deciding factor.

I had my concerns about changing foot pegs though, which I should mention. There just ain't a hell of a lot of room, front to rear, between the pegs and either the shifter or brake on my bike, and I was concerned that the wider pegs would interfere with braking or shifting, neither of which is a good thing. In the pics above, maybe you can see what I mean. But what the hell. I figured if put 'em on and they didn't work out, I'd beg Kevin (or maybe Dawn!) to take 'em back. 

Or maybe I could just call DK and talk to Dawn, but wait, there I go again!......Focus Cowboy, focus......

The Canyon Carvers arrived practically overnight, which was cool, and I was pleasantly surprised to find out DK even included new snap rings with the pegs, which is a nice little bonus. Those damn snap rings bend up every time I remove 'em, so having a set of new ones right there was pretty cool. A+ for DK on that little detail.

The quality was evident right out of the box. A black, trap-looking outer ring, bolted to a chrome center section with countersink-head socket screws. Nice looking construction, and not tinny or cheap. They definitely look like a heavy duty BMX bicycle pedal, which I think makes them cool. They've got some serious grippers, and my boots won't be sliding off at the wrong moment!

Installation is a breeze, but I put the bike on a lift anyway to do some cleaning while I was at it. Just pop off the old clip, pull out the clevis pin, and remove the old pegs. On each side, there's a stamped spring that takes up the slack between the old peg and the slot, so don't let that get lost. Just line up the new peg, slide it in along with that spring, and replace the clevis pin, securing it with that new c-clip.

the flat spring

There's even a couple possible adjustments. You can use a socket to loosen and remove the locknut on the shaft. Then adjust the inside nut to: 1) let the peg rotate freely, 2) add a little resistance, or 3) lock it in place. Totally up to you. I left mine loose until I was sure there weren't going to be an shifting and braking issues. Don't forget to reinstall the lock nut when you finish adjusting.

There's also a little set screw that allows you to adjust the drop of the peg. I guess the technical term would be horizontal alignment. Back the screw out and the peg raises up. Turn it in and they droop. Want droopy foot pegs? This is your big chance!!!!

I got mine set where I wanted 'em, counted the number of exposed threads of the set screws, and then removed them. I then added some blue Loctite and reinstalled to my previous setting. Not sure I really needed to do that extra removal step, but I definitely needed to add the Loctite. The tapped threads in one of my pegs were sorta loose, so a little crunch on the set screw threads with pliers added a bit more resistance. I didn't wanna lose it and have a droopy peg! Hell, I'd be lopsided!

This pic, with the old peg on top of new, shows the difference in size, and how much the new pegs stick out, which also moves your feet out a little further. You'll feel that difference as soon as you start riding.

Cool looking!

The pegs look great. A test ride quickly let me know there was a difference, though. My feet were out a little further on both sides so I had to slightly turn my foot in to shift. Not a big deal and after a few lights, I forgot about it. Same with the rear brake.

There was also an immediate feeling that there was something more substantial under my boots. More like a platform than a round surface, and though I haven't taken any long rides yet, I'll bet this will make a difference. I'm going to experiment with position and the lock the pegs down to see how that works out. Seems that might even be more comfortable. Or not. We'll see.

Overall, this was a great addition and couldn't have been simpler. The pegs are (like DK's coil relocating bracket) very high quality, and I don't expect any issues with them, and yeah, the price is right. Like 80 bucks a pair! Go for it. DK has another winner.


PS If you call DK and happen to get Dawn on the phone, be sure to tell her Cowboy said Hi!

PPS Here are the links to all 6 Nightster/Joker posts in order, 1-6: