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Clip On Position (Sweep, Drop) for Racing/Track Days

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  • Clip On Position (Sweep, Drop) for Racing/Track Days

    In preparation to repair and replace the mangled parts from my last off at Blackhawk, I decided to get precise and recorded down all my measurements with a fancy shmancy gap tool. As I dissembled everything, I realize that I completely forgot to record my clip on sweep angle (which was really the main measurement I wanted...).

    In searching for even basic guidelines for handlebar sweep angle, I can find almost nothing. It seems people just kind of do what looks good...

    The new clip ons are also way wider than my OEM clip ons, so I am thinking I'll choke my handgrips up quite a bit.

    Can you let me know what you use in terms of angles and measurements (distance down from top triple, sweep angle) , if it matters that much, and/or if there is an online source for guidelines for clip on placement for track riders, racers?

    Maybe it just comes down to what is most comfortable...

    Edit: Also, these new bars really are freaking wide. Should I choke up to the point where they're as narrow as my current ones? Or just leave some space for a bar end (brake guard)?

    Funny enough, I encountered the same conundrum in cycling. New mountain bike bars are absurdly wide and they still feel a little weird and took some getting used to.
    Last edited by Woozuki; 06-18-2019, 01:45 PM.

  • #2
    I don't race, so take this with a grain of salt: I just loosen them enough to move but stay in place, then I get in whatever position on the bike I want them to be most comfortable in, and I move them to that position and tighten them up. Then check to see if they clear everything lock to lock.

    So I'm here to see what more intelligent/seasoned riders have to say as well.

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    • #3
      You experiment to find what works. Its not something to set and forget, moving your clips-on to get a better throttle twist off a right hander, or support better braking, or turn in is why they are adjustable. Spend one day messing around adjusting and find out what you like. Bigger changes are ok for trying, just make sure that you check lock to lock and nothing is obstructing or hanging.

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      • #4
        You can move the bars in to make them "shorter'...

        Some racers say to tighten things just enough to stay put, they should move/swerve in the event of an off and hopefully just push back into place to continue back on track. Might reduce risk of breaking because they were tightened down too much?
        WELCOME TO WiR - Enjoy

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Spoot View Post
          You can move the bars in to make them "shorter'...

          Some racers say to tighten things just enough to stay put, they should move/swerve in the event of an off and hopefully just push back into place to continue back on track. Might reduce risk of breaking because they were tightened down too much?
          Actually tighten them enough that you can stand in front of the bike and hit the bars backwards with your hands hard. If they move, they aren't tight enough. Tech WILL do this.
          Wait a minute. Look at those shifty eyes. That devious half-smile. Those kazoo-kissed lips.

          CCS # 14 EX
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          • #6
            It's definitely personal preference. On my SV, which i consider to have a slightly heavier turn in than other bikes, I like a wider angle, with grips out as far as they can go. I recall someone around here with a last gen ZX10r preferred that too because it made for better leverage during turn in. Definitely experiment.
            You should see me in a headsock !

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            • #7
              A little 'longer' and a little more 'straight out' than stock makes it wider and gives you more leverage for counter-steering for initiating your turns, which makes it easier overall. You usually can't go too far forward or back without the clutch or brake lever hitting a fairing, so make sure you can still turn the front lock to lock with clearance for your hands and levers.
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              • #8
                When I setup my bikes with clip-ons I benchmarked the OEM position for the initial setup. The angle of the clip-ons and height changes will limit how much adjust-ability you have. For my track bike I went with the shortest length possible with all the components clamped on the bar then adjusted the rotation of the bars (out) to gain more leverage. I marked the setting in pencil to begin with then used a punch to mark the set points once it was dialed in. This helped a lot when I had to replace one of the bars after a highside - made it into a subsequent race later the same day.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by fenter View Post
                  When I setup my bikes with clip-ons I benchmarked the OEM position for the initial setup. The angle of the clip-ons and height changes will limit how much adjust-ability you have. For my track bike I went with the shortest length possible with all the components clamped on the bar then adjusted the rotation of the bars (out) to gain more leverage. I marked the setting in pencil to begin with then used a punch to mark the set points once it was dialed in. This helped a lot when I had to replace one of the bars after a highside - made it into a subsequent race later the same day.
                  Hmm..the OEM position is actually what I was trying to find specs on. Maybe I'll look harder. And these are all good methods for consistency. I ended up slapping them on and eyeballing. Getting them symmetrical was a real PIA though (mixed with a healthy helping of OCD).

                  Kind of echoing what was generally said by y'all; I basically got into a tucked position and got them comfortable, tightened them down; lock to lock, the levers ran into the fairing. So truly the fairing is the limiting factor here. I feel like on newer bikes (RC390, especially), the fairings have bigger cutouts to give it that mountain bike looking stance.

                  Thanks all!

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                  • #10
                    I spoken with others who, on track bikes, have adjusted the stop location on their steering stops by adding wheel weights (or the like) in order to avoid such conflicts. It may be worth considering as opposed to cutting up fairings.
                    Last edited by fenter; 06-25-2019, 02:14 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by fenter View Post
                      I spoken with others who, on track bikes, have adjusted the stop location on their steering stops by adding wheel weights (or the like) in order to avoid such conflicts. It may be worth considering as opposed to cutting up fairings.
                      Another benefit to wheel weights is they can act as a bit of a cushion in case of an impact and prevent broken stops.

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