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  #1  
Old 10th December 2006
gilx's Avatar
gilx gilx is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Northern Utah
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Sportster/Buell Model: 1200 custom
Sportster/Buell Year: 2004
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Thumbs up Hand Deflectors from National Cycle

Here in Utah I ride year round. Very enjoyable when warm, but the winter can present a challenge. I recently purchased a pair of hand deflectors made by National Cycle. These are my observations from my first full week of use.

I purchased the hand deflectors from J&P Cycle. When I attempted to install them I quickly found the instructions to be worthless. My bike is a 2004, 1200 Custom. Although I ordered the deflectors for a 2004, the instructions didn't match my stock configuration. After some trial and error I found I had to adjust the front turn signals as far toward the center and slightly down to allow the deflectors to fit. This had to be done, and fully tightened before the deflectors were installed as they covered the turn signal adjustment screw. I was surprised to discover that although the attachment bar and the mounting nuts were metal, the screws appeared to be a high density plastic. These are the screws that mount the plastic deflector shield to the mounting bracket. These also have to be mounted and fully tightened before the whole assemble is mounted to the rear view mirror stem. On the 2004, because of the location of the stock front turn signals, there is almost no room for adjustment of the deflectors. However, mounted within that limited range, they appear to be mounted correctly.

Once through the trauma of getting the blasted things on, they appear to work great. For the first several days of use, my ride to work in the morning the temp would be in the mid teens. It would warm up to mid 20s on the ride home. At such temps the hand deflectors will not prevent the need for warm gloves. As a test, I rode to work one day with only my unlined, deer skin, work gloves from Sams that I normally wear in warm weather. Hands were cold and numb after my 10 mile ride. However, the next day, same temps, I wore my Sams deer skin lined gloves: warm and comfortable! Keeping the wind off the hands allow them to retain heat. Before installing the deflectors, even with my lined gloves my hands would have been cold and numb.

The longest ride I have gone on with them so far has only been about 70 miles. Temps at that time were in the high 20s, lined Sams gloves kept me warm and comfortable...although I was wearing my electric coat liner. I anticipate that longer rides this winter, in the teens or lower, will be more comfortable than last year when electric gloves were exposed to the wind. Last year they were cool, but not numb. This year I expect "toasty!"

One problem, but I can't be certain until I take the deflectors off again, is additional turbulance they may have introduced, causing a little more head bumping. I notice this at lower speed after I installed them. I made another change at the same time, the addition of "Desert Dawgs" on the engine guard so I can't rule out additional turbulance that may have been introduced by them.

Bottom line: by shielding the hands from the cold air blast, especially at sub freezing temps, makes a big difference in warmth and continued mobility of the hands. The price, $89 at J&P seems a bit high for a couple pieces of bent plastic, but the end result is priceless: warm hands! Thumbs up
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  #2  
Old 10th December 2006
cantolina's Avatar
cantolina cantolina is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Chautauqua County, NY
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gilx
Here in Utah I ride year round. Very enjoyable when warm, but the winter can present a challenge. I recently purchased a pair of hand deflectors made by National Cycle. These are my observations from my first full week of use.

I purchased the hand deflectors from J&P Cycle. When I attempted to install them I quickly found the instructions to be worthless. My bike is a 2004, 1200 Custom. Although I ordered the deflectors for a 2004, the instructions didn't match my stock configuration. After some trial and error I found I had to adjust the front turn signals as far toward the center and slightly down to allow the deflectors to fit. This had to be done, and fully tightened before the deflectors were installed as they covered the turn signal adjustment screw. I was surprised to discover that although the attachment bar and the mounting nuts were metal, the screws appeared to be a high density plastic. These are the screws that mount the plastic deflector shield to the mounting bracket. These also have to be mounted and fully tightened before the whole assemble is mounted to the rear view mirror stem. On the 2004, because of the location of the stock front turn signals, there is almost no room for adjustment of the deflectors. However, mounted within that limited range, they appear to be mounted correctly.

Once through the trauma of getting the blasted things on, they appear to work great. For the first several days of use, my ride to work in the morning the temp would be in the mid teens. It would warm up to mid 20s on the ride home. At such temps the hand deflectors will not prevent the need for warm gloves. As a test, I rode to work one day with only my unlined, deer skin, work gloves from Sams that I normally wear in warm weather. Hands were cold and numb after my 10 mile ride. However, the next day, same temps, I wore my Sams deer skin lined gloves: warm and comfortable! Keeping the wind off the hands allow them to retain heat. Before installing the deflectors, even with my lined gloves my hands would have been cold and numb.

The longest ride I have gone on with them so far has only been about 70 miles. Temps at that time were in the high 20s, lined Sams gloves kept me warm and comfortable...although I was wearing my electric coat liner. I anticipate that longer rides this winter, in the teens or lower, will be more comfortable than last year when electric gloves were exposed to the wind. Last year they were cool, but not numb. This year I expect "toasty!"

One problem, but I can't be certain until I take the deflectors off again, is additional turbulance they may have introduced, causing a little more head bumping. I notice this at lower speed after I installed them. I made another change at the same time, the addition of "Desert Dawgs" on the engine guard so I can't rule out additional turbulance that may have been introduced by them.

Bottom line: by shielding the hands from the cold air blast, especially at sub freezing temps, makes a big difference in warmth and continued mobility of the hands. The price, $89 at J&P seems a bit high for a couple pieces of bent plastic, but the end result is priceless: warm hands! Thumbs up
I would sure love to see a pic (or pics) of how they mount up!
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Occam's Razor...

in English: "entities must not be multiplied beyond necessity."
My definition: "The simplest answers are the most likely"

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  #3  
Old 10th December 2006
DustyJacket's Avatar
DustyJacket DustyJacket is offline
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I've had mine for over a year (2005 1200C) and had no problems mounting them. I never took them off because they help not only in cold weather, but in wet weather, and with bugs and gravel.

I lost one when I hit some ice last December and ordered a replacement. I love them.
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  #4  
Old 11th December 2006
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pfortin pfortin is offline
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Thanks for the review and the install warnings. This seems like a pretty nice solution for the sub 20 degree weather I've been riding in lately. Does anyone know of any alternatives that are a bit kinder on the wallet?
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