Among all the bike parts on Harley-Davidson, the handlebar is what the rider interacts most with. Without the rider realizing, it plays a crucial part in the riding experience. Although default handles can do the work, however, those are not catered to your personal need. That is why you will be better off with a handlebar of your choosing.
Getting a new handlebar bar depends a lot on personal preferences. I tried focusing only on basic things so that you don’t get restricted by specifications. Throughout the post, you will not only get an idea about which ones are the best but also, I’ll explain in detail why they made their place on the list.
Let’s take a look at the best handlebars for street glide. Hopefully, you won’t have to look elsewhere once you have gone through the post.
What Street Glide Handlebars Kit Should You Choose?
First of all, you should choose the right height. It should complement your sitting posture. And be careful not to get the height of the hands higher than heart level. Otherwise, you will face heavy discomfort during the long rides. Also, choose the pullback length depending on the seat position. Long pull back handles are best suited in models their seat is farther back.
Make sure you can sit comfortably upright position because leaning forward or backward for a long time is likely to cause back pain. Then there is the question would you have to extend the cable. As it depends on the handle if you will have to re-do the wires.
How I Picked The Products
Finding out the best handlebar was not easy. There are a lot of options in Amazon starting from cheap Chinese knock-offs to dependable expensive ones. Then they also have different designs, shapes, materials, etc. As everyone has different tastes so to each one, the definition of best will differ. That is why I judged these kits with basic features height, material, width, etc. Because besides the personal preference these qualities make sure you have the best experience.
On top of that, I categorized all from the best one to the best budget and everything in between. The spectrum on these categories is quite diverse. Hopefully, you will find your best match on the list.
Best Handlebars For Street Glide Review
Let’s now dive in and take a deep look at the handlebars and learn what makes them so great. I will start with a comparison table.
|Products||Height||Pull Back||Rating on amazon|
|14″ MERCENARY BARS HANDLEBARS||14 inches||7 inches||4.8|
|LA CHOPPERS LA-7361-12B Black||8/10/12/14/16/18 inch||7 inches||4.7|
|HTTMT HB02||6 inches||5 inches||4.4|
|Paul Yaffe’s Bagger Nation MBB125-8 B Black||8 and 16 inches||9 inches||4.8|
|Todds Cycle Strip||11 inches||5.5 inches||5|
FMB 14″ Mercenary Bars Handlebars – Best Overall
Height: 14 inches
Pull Back: 7 inches
Weld Type: 100% TIG weld
Powder Coat: Yes
These custom 14″ Mercenary bars come in two variants, they are Satin Black and Glossy. Both Satin Black and Glossy variant looks elegant in all weather. It will surely attract many eyes wherever you go.
Your hands will rest in comfortable positions all the time. It also allows rotation with very little hand displacement. So, it will be easier to take tight corners. This is a design that complements the rider on long rides.
This handle was hand-made with 100% TIG weld. TIG welding is renowned for its ability to produce strong welds. The welding ensures the joints can face all kinds of abuse you can throw at them. It is one of the strongest 14 inch handlebars for street glide.
The extra layer of powder coat makes sure the rust, corrosion stays away. It also slows down color fading. Also, this coat allows the makers to implement different types of finishes.
- Very comfortable design
- The powder-coated finish is flawless
- Extremely durable and strong build-quality
- Easy to install
- Great customer service
- No cutouts for flyby wires
- Not suitable for short riders
LA CHOPPERS LA-7361-12B Black 11/4″ – Runner-up
Height: 8/10/12/14/16 inches
Pull Back: 6 inches
This one is designed with an emphasis on comfort. The only reason I put this kit in the second place is that it does not come with TIG Weld like the top pick. Otherwise, the places would have switched.
There are some holes drilled on this handlebar. It is done to accommodate the wires inside it. That way it keeps the wires safe and improves the look. The system is also efficient as you won’t have to deal with hanging wires anymore.
Whether you have cable or electronic throttle it won’t matter. This handlebar can work with both types on the throttle. The parallel wrist angles would let you take turns easily and allow stress-free riding.
Designed for Batwing Fairing
The flowing design bends on as it rises from the base. This was done on purpose as it is designed specifically for Batwing fairings. Don’t worry, You can use it without any fairing too. This compatibility and features together make it one of the best 12 inch handlebars for street glide.
- Comes with a gloss black powder coat
- Has drills for internal wiring
- Works with both cable and electronic throttle
- Improves bike handling
- Can be installed with basic tools
- The long bolts it needs are hard to find if you lose anything
- Wiring cables inside need a little bit of technical expertise
HTTMT HB02-12 Inches Rise Ape Hangers Handlebar – Best Budget
Height: 6 inches
Pull Back: 3 inches
Drilled Holes: Yes
This is a compact handlebar that is designed to make sure your long rides are comfortable. Your hands will be in a comfortable position all the time.
It is only 6 inches in height which especially helps short riders. Also, tall riders won’t feel any kind of discomfort. During long tours, the height won’t make your hand feel numb.
Attractive color choices
If you are tired of watching all the handlebars coming in black. Then, this one won’t disappoint you. Besides the black color, it also comes with a chromium finish. So, you have options to pick from whichever looks better on your bike.
The price of this kit is very affordable. If you are on a tight budget or don’t want to break the bank, then this is a great choice. You will be saving at least a hundred bucks if you get this instead of its competitions.
- The design provides great comfort
- Fits any custom applications
- Drilled holes for wire setup
- Comes at an affordable price
- Has color options
- Average durability. So, has to be used carefully
- Gets rusty if not cleaned regularly
Paul Yaffe’s Bagger Nation MBB125 – Easy Wiring
Height: 8”/16” inches
Pull back: 9 inches
Width: 36 inches
Wiring space: Yes
This handlebar comes with a unique design. It will change your riding experience altogether. The quality of this kit is one of the highest in the market.
The most unique thing about this is unlike all others on the list, this one is handcrafted. It is crafted to fit all the touring models. So, the attention to detail is amazing on this one.
Natural Grip Position
The grips on this bar were engineered to provide a relaxed and natural grip angle. It lets you rest your hands in a very comfortable position. On top of that, the design allows maximum rotation regarding your hand’s positions.
Easy to install
When installing you will not have to go through any kind of modification. Just screw in the bolts tightly and you are done. Installing wired on this bar is also very easy as there is enough space left for that.
- Natural and relaxed grip
- Allows maximum rotation
- Ease of installation
- No need to extend the clutch or brake line
- Long and comfortable pullback length
- Price is a little bit high
- Does not work with hydraulic clutch
Todds Cycle Strip 1 1/4in. Handlebar – For Short Riders
Height: 11 inches
Pull back: 5.5 inch
Wiring slot: Yes
Electronic throttle support: Yes
This bar comes with a solution for riders with short height. Riders under 5’5” can comfortably ride with this handlebar installed.
Space for Electronic Throttle
Many handlebars do not come with the support of electronic throttle yet, If your bike has electronic throttle then you have met your match. This handle is notched to make space for electronic throttle.
Slotted for internal wiring
It has slots for internal wiring. Though you have the option for external wiring, internal wiring is considered safer. It also improves the overall look of the bike.
Clear line of sight
On top of all these, you will have a clear line of sight if you install OE-style mirrors. And as we all know, with greater visibility comes greater driving safety. Being short, it keeps the line of sight of drive intact.
- Very well polished weld
- Pullbacks are designed for maximum comfort
- Optimal height for long rides
- Has option for both internal and external wiring
- A great option for short riders
- Might not fit well with taller riders
- Does not support electronic throttle on FXSTS/FLSTS model
How To Choose The Best Handlebars For Street Glide (The Buying Guide)
The height is measured down from the base to the handle grips in a straight line. The handlebars for Harley come in different shapes and sizes. But, don’t get fooled and pick something out of your comfort zone.
The basic rule is that your hands should be below your heart level. If your resting posture has hands above the heart level, during a long ride your hand will get a lower dose of oxygen from the blood and feel numb. And, this is a recipe for disaster.
So, whichever height you pick make sure your hands don’t exceed the heart level. For shorter riders I would suggest 10 inch handlebars for street glide, even 8 or 12 inches would be a good fit too.
The rule of thumb is that your hands should not be much wider when resting on grips than the distance between your shoulder. This particular posture makes sure the muscles on the hand don’t get tired quickly.
The grip position and shoulder do not have to be an exact match. But the gap should not be so much that you have to stretch your arms wide. If you like wider grips just make sure the arms don’t get tired.
The pullback is how long the grip extends toward the rider. The measurement starts from the base to much the grip goes toward the rider. This image from hdforums.com explains how to measure the pullback. Usually, sports bikes have very short pullbacks while cruising bikes like Harley Davidson have much larger pullbacks.
The pullback should be long enough so that you can seat straight up. If you have to lean forward or backward, then you might have back pain during long rides.
Thickness / Diameter
How the handle behaves during adverse situations depends on its thickness or diameter. The thicker construct it has, the heavier blow it can withstand. A strong handle is a necessity if you like to ride rough. It will offer full support when you use the hand brake. In case you are into stunts, then you will definitely need a strong handle that can withstand all the abuse.
Many might think that shape of the handlebar depends on the test of the user. But shape impacts the overall experience and should be picked carefully. For example, the shape of the handlebar impacts attaching a fairing or speaker. So, besides the comfort also think about how you want to attach kits to your bike in the future and pick accordingly.
How long the handlebar will last depends a lot on the build material. It should be rust and corrosion-resistant. Make sure it is weather-resistant if you like to ride in all kinds of weather. Stainless steel and its other variants are very good options in that regard. Equipment made with the right materials will accompany you for a long time.
Last but not least, ensure it can fit the wiring of your bike. If the wires and handle don’t match, the wire might cut short or the extra length will be hanging along the bar. In both cases, you will need to do some extra work to patch things up. You will be relieved of this duty if the design matches with the current wiring of your bike.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What size are stock Road Glide handlebars?
Most stock Road Glide handlebar is 1.25″ in diameter to offer optimized ergonomic design.
How do I choose Harley handlebars?
The best way to choose one is to have a practical trial. Maybe riding a few miles would help you to choose the one you feel most comfortable with.
Are ape hangers more comfortable?
Yes, ape hangers are comfortable and there is ‘but’. It is most comfortable for tall riders.
How do you measure handlebar diameter?
Get the circumference size and divide it by pi. For example, if it measures 3.14 inches, then divide 3.14 inches by pi. And, that will be the handlebar diameter.
What size are Harley handlebars?
Normally the handlebars come in either 1″ or 7/8″ diameter. For those who are looking for thicker ones, they have options for 1.25 inches or 1.5 inches.
Are ape hangers comfortable on long rides?
If you have the right height, then yes. Ape hangers are comfortable for long rides.
Why do bikers have high handlebars?
Not all bikers have high handlebars. For those who do, they find comfort and more control with high handlebars.
The stock handlebars for street glide works, but the customs ones are better. Now that you know all about the non-stock handlebar feel free to choose any from the list. In my opinion, 14″ MERCENARY BARS HANDLEBARS is the one to look out for. But, it is you who decides which one is the best. All of the kits are proven and tested in real work. These are the best handlebars for street glide because of their durability and reliability.