Author Topic: long rides and a busted back  (Read 967 times)

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Offline hotrodshovel

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long rides and a busted back
« on: January 28, 2018, 04:57:54 AM »
Did over 400 miles yesterday, no big deal but for me at this point in my life with a busted back and almost as much steel in me as one could imagine I am grateful to still be able to ride.  However my long days in the saddle are over.  This was my limit but I realized how limited my 2014 Fatty is in terms of ergonomics.  I got the Fatty because I had no intensions of longer rides. Legs have no options, back could use support etc.

First Im thinking engine guards to hook up some foot pegs.  Anyone have any preferences such as mustache bars, traditional guards, etc. Im overwhelmed and looking at a million pics on Google is not very helpful.

Also back rests.  Back in the 90's I bought a Road King and put a Mustang seat with an adjustable riders back rest.  I was normal then and it was kind of in the way but I think it will help take some strain off now a days.

Any feedback, opinions, experience with these things from guys suffering with back issues would be greatly appreciated.
Sometimes life is like trying to share a sandwich with Rosie O'Donnell. 
John

Offline wolf_59

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2018, 05:47:41 AM »
When I first got my 04 Fatboy I was miserable trying to ride it any distance at all, after installing the standard engine guard and highway pegs that way I could position the pegs where I needed them to be and a Mustang touring seat (I did not spring for the riders backrest) and then adding 4" risers with a 1" kickback that got rid of the pinching pain between my shoulders and added a windshield now it's a pretty comfortable bike to make 500-600 mile day rides
 

Offline Nutoy

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2018, 06:30:56 AM »
I have a 14 fatboy also and have a mustache bar with pegs on it. the riders backrest sure helps on long trips with giving my back a rest. I have also have a windshield and added the fork air deflectors to help with air buffeting noise around my head.

Offline koko3052

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2018, 06:36:13 AM »
On my '05 Fatty I had to take the running boards off because the wind would catch my knees & pull my feet off of the boards. I built some side plates & extended controls to have my feet out front on pegs. I would like them about 1 1/2" farther out , but then I wouldn't be able to turn the wheel side to side without extending the bikes backbone. Can sit in the saddle all day long.  :SM:
Someday I'm going to put on a riders backrest like the touring models. :up:

Offline Mike Davies

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2018, 07:59:56 AM »
My back can be a big problem at times....2013 Road King - went with highway pegs , HD back rest, Sundowner seat for more support and at times used a Air Hawk 2 seat cushion. All these changes meant I could move around more and always find a comfortable seating position. What a difference!

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2018, 08:16:47 AM »
I put on 14" apes which keep my hand at just about shoulder length and keep me from slouching.  Its a bit more aggressive position and I feel as though I am more in control of the machine rather than just sitting on top of it rolling along.  So that helps.

My windshield keeps the wind off my chest and I cut about 4" off it so the wind just flows to the top of my helmet.  Its no longer in my field of vision.  That windshield is probably the singular most important piece of gear that makes long trips doable. 

Sometimes life is like trying to share a sandwich with Rosie O'Donnell. 
John

Offline rhuff

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2018, 08:19:02 AM »
Without a doubt, highway pegs and a backrest will improve your comfort.   

OP, sorry to hear about your back- if you haven't found a great physical therapist and massage therapist, find them.  Then learn what you can also do on your own.  Will you be 20 again, no, but you can turn back the clock with some work most times.

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2018, 08:32:12 AM »
ruff, thanks for the encouraging words but I got pretty banged up and am lucky to be walking & riding!!  PT is out of the question.  far too much scar tissue, bone graft, hardware and all that stuff.  Peaks and valleys, thats how I go thru my days. Some better than others. On a scale of 1 to 10 my norm is a 4...meds and positive attitude along with regular injections helps me keep my sunny side up.  Plus I'm used to it. 11 years since I got f'd up.  Its just a way of life.

Its a wonderful thing that the only time I am out of pain is when I ride.  One Dr who rides said its a Zen thing.  I'm so uber focused on my machine (no music for me, its a distraction) who's around me, anticipating other vehicles movement especially when we are in a pack its far more intense. Very tight formation, 2x2 moving like one organism.  The adrenaline flows and I'm virtually pain free. He says I have no room to think about pain...until we stop for gas.    Ok Admin move this to the Wounded & Crippled Forum.
Sometimes life is like trying to share a sandwich with Rosie O'Donnell. 
John

Offline Deye76

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2018, 08:45:55 AM »
I too have back problems, and many can't believe me when I tell them riding is when my back feels the best. Up to a point. If the seat is good, with a backrest and being able to move my feet( hwy pegs), I can still do a 500 mi day. The days of 750-1000 miles is in the rearview mirror.   
East Tenn.
2014 CVO RK, 2015 RGS, 1992 FXRP

Online Hossamania

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2018, 08:50:52 AM »
Wounded and Crippled Forum - it would be the fastest filling category on this site!
No shirt, no shoes, but I still get service.
Why? Girl, look at this body!

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2018, 08:58:51 AM »
    Oh yea, dig this. For the price its great.  One other thing the MoCo refuses to make functional..

https://tinyurl.com/y8v8hkw3

Edit: FSG, used a tiny url so I can read the screen without going next door  :teeth:
« Last Edit: January 29, 2018, 02:09:41 AM by FSG »
Sometimes life is like trying to share a sandwich with Rosie O'Donnell. 
John

Offline kd

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2018, 09:10:31 AM »
I found earlier on that using drag bars had me leaning slightly forward and the wind on the highway (before I had a windshield) would support me, taking the back-work out of sitting for long stretches. Also hard bumps were more easily absorbed because the shock was not straight up the spine. Your back actually bends (sways) with the jolt so there is no hit to the vertebrae, I have softail bars on my RGU that give me a little of that relief too.
KD

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2018, 09:20:15 AM »
Unfortunately there is nothing normal about the lower half of my spine.  I'm fused and bolted together so there is no flex.  Its a mess. The more erect I am the better so the windshield takes the pressure off my torso.  I'm just glad I can talk about my rides!!!!
Sometimes life is like trying to share a sandwich with Rosie O'Donnell. 
John

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2018, 09:21:40 AM »
So I'm talking about this with my wife and she says," Just trade in the Fatboy for a Road King"...I love my wife.
Sometimes life is like trying to share a sandwich with Rosie O'Donnell. 
John

Offline mr. pitts

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2018, 09:37:22 AM »
I put a detachable screen on my Fat Boy, made a world of difference to my back. A back rest will help too.

Offline PoorUB

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #15 on: January 28, 2018, 02:08:29 PM »
I have been riding years with a back rest. If am sitting upright in a "cruiser" position I need something to support my back. Without I can not ride very long and I am in pain for a while afterwords. If I lean forward like a sport bike or sport tourer I am good too.

When you sit straight up your back still has a slight curve, and as you ride longer distance and time you tend to slouch and your back curves even more. Now have a bad back and ride a Harley with crappy suspension over rough roads and you are in pain!
« Last Edit: January 28, 2018, 02:57:04 PM by PoorUB »
I am an adult?? When did that happen, and how do I make it stop?!

Offline kd

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2018, 02:16:44 PM »
That`s funny that you mention the "slouch".  Start watching for the slouchers and you will quickly see that you can tell a female rider from a long distance away by the seated upright stance they have.
KD

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2018, 02:50:05 PM »
I believe you should take a RoadKing for a test ride. You have a wonderful wife!
They really do ride nicer than the Softails.
No shirt, no shoes, but I still get service.
Why? Girl, look at this body!

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2018, 04:11:50 PM »
I bought a new a Road King back in 97, but a few years later well... life gets in the way sometimes and the lawyers need to get paid.   That was the first thing sacrificed..I'm wondering how a nice black Twin Cam Street Glide will look in my garage.  No M8's yet
Sometimes life is like trying to share a sandwich with Rosie O'Donnell. 
John

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #19 on: January 28, 2018, 07:17:12 PM »
Having railed against fairings for years, I have changed my tune. They are comfortable, and make the ride a little calmer. Lowers make it even quieter.
But, they do add some unnatural weight to the front end and take some getting used to. Once you do, it's natural.
The first thing you may end up doing is changing out the seat. For some reason, looks trump function often in that area. Dealers have demo seats to try for a day or two. Give the Sundowner a try, if it doesnt work, keep trying others. If none of those, there are some other good choices from members here, including Mean City Cycles to rework the stock seat.
Good luck!
No shirt, no shoes, but I still get service.
Why? Girl, look at this body!

Offline Jim Bronson

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #20 on: January 28, 2018, 09:14:57 PM »
'15 RK. I had my stock seat reworked by a local guy, and I bought a Mustang backrest for it. The windshield is a HD Windsplitter (the one with the slot). The combo is great. No head buffeting, and my back is grateful for the support. The backrest is very nice, and it folds completely flat to the seat for getting on and off.
Going down that long, lonesome highway. Gonna live life my way.

Offline locker55

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #21 on: January 29, 2018, 01:46:31 AM »
I recommend the Harley 360* highway pegs.(they can be set just perfect). The sundowner seat. And a windshield or fairing. Also the riders backrest.
I have the Harley adjustable riders back rest it has the cable to set the rest back or forward.
I have the sundowner seat like sitting on a couch.
Also the quick release windshield for the RK and the SG has the fairing.
On long rides I have the highway pegs set so I can lock my legs leaning agents the backrest. (ride for hours like this).
I found taking the wind off of you in long rides is a main factor of being able to relax and not have to fight the wind pushing you.
And listen to the wife the touring models are built for a reason, That's why they're called touring.
I know when you get the right bike set up to fit you just right you'll be happier then fighting it.
Good luck with whatever you do.

Offline 76shuvlinoff

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #22 on: January 29, 2018, 02:42:05 AM »
John,
 I gave in and bought an old man bagger in 2013.  Bigazz batwing with extensions (louvers?) plus the full lowers, left the stock tall windshield on it. Yep, it ain't pretty unless you're behind it. Brought the bars back to me but I'm only 5"8" on a good day. I added a cheap, removeable but non adjustable backrest, (might upgrade that) and highway pegs.  It's a damn boat but suddenly I can ride all day and be happy to climb back on the next day.

Still got the ape-hangered Thunderheaded shovel for profilin'  :wink:

 Mark
Being defenseless does not make you more safe.

Offline hotrodshovel

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #23 on: January 29, 2018, 11:04:41 AM »
yes, you all are correct and I have to give in to Mother Nature doing what she does to us kids with old man bones.  Its been nearly half a century since I first got on a bike (much to my father's upset, I was way too young, 14 with a 650 BSA Lightning that he didn't know about) and I'm no longer a young man.  As Mark I have my 96" Shovelhead, Franken Shovel, HotRodShovel... when I want to scratch the itch of literally being in the wind & looking like I was still 25 so my #1 ride has to be built for comfort.

I picked up this 14 Fatboy new in Jan 15 because I never figured Id not ride long distance again.  The detachable windshield is a must. I never had a fairing, I too resisted and this is the first time I have given serious thought to getting one. 

I think if I add a backrest and highway pegs to the fatty I'll be ok.  Just need to stretch the old limbs and take pressure off my back.

Mother Nature is a cruel mother. 
Sometimes life is like trying to share a sandwich with Rosie O'Donnell. 
John

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Re: long rides and a busted back
« Reply #24 on: January 29, 2018, 11:13:19 AM »
Which seat are you running on the FatBoy? If stock, consider having it reworked, or at least give the demo seats a try.
No shirt, no shoes, but I still get service.
Why? Girl, look at this body!