by Ted Verrill
There are apparently
three alternatives to the stock K1100RS handlebars; Bar Backs, "C"
Bars and "RT/LT" Bars. While several have gone the (much) more
expensive route of having current K11 bar ends welded onto "C"
bars, it is a custom job unique to each person that has had it done.
A "C" bar from a K75 or the European K100 standard bar.
The jury is still out as to whether a new brake line is needed, but
most say "no." You will need zip-ties however as the existing
ones will need to be cut to reposition cables. (If you need a new
clutch cable, now is the time to replace it!)
If you use a K75 "C" bar you will need to drill the center
to accept heated grips, and notch the end to accept bar-end weights.
The Euro K100 bar, which costs ~$59, comes pre-drilled and notched.
Installation: Difficult, this will take a good 3 hours. You
will need to trim back the crash pad to accommodate the new bars,
and there is a chance you will also have to replace the brake hose
and bleed the front brakes (which you probably need to do anyway,
Cost: $59 new for the Euro bars, I don't know of a source for
used ones. For the K75 "C" bars option expect to pay around
$40 used or $80 new for the Bar. The brake hose, if needed, is not
You will need to purchase Bar Backs that fit the K11 series handlebar.
I have never seen BarBacks made specifically for the K11 though apparently
8-valve K-series ones work. You will also need zip-ties and you may
need a longer brake hose.
Installation: Moderately Difficult, this will easily take 2
hours. You will need to trim the crash pad to allow it to be moved
freely from the ignition and accompanying keyed handlebar lock (which
cannot be moved back with the crash pad.) There is a chance you will
also have to replace the brake hose and bleed the front brakes (always
a good idea anyway!)
Cost: Between $125 and $150.
conversion is quite similar to the "C" conversion mentioned
above, except that one can use the K1100 LT bar instead of the "C"
bar. One should probably purchase the K1100LT heated grip kit as it
includes the LT bar and all of the necessary hardware. I have only
seen this mod once and to be quite honest it looked quite awkward
and uncomfortable. I think a new brake hose is also necessary here.
Definitely check with your dealer before performing this mod.