Barkbusters Storm Handguards have become the defacto choice for adventure motorcycles the world over. Hand guards have been a staple on dirt bikes and ATVs for years, used for keeping brush and debris clear of the hands, and the controls safe in the event of a crash. More recently, the popularity of BMW adventure motorcycles, always seen with this add-on accessory, has made this more of a fashion accessory…
The fact of the matter is: despite often being a farkle, these Barkbusters Storm Handguards DO serve a purpose. After our ride out to Mid-Ohio Vintage Days, in torrential storms, I felt the need to have something that would help deflect stinging rain. The problem is, these Barkbusters Storm Handguards are the most expensive model available.
So I set about looking on the forums for a used set – hoping to find someone willing to part with the coveted item. There is a specific model designed to fit the Versys, with additional options, like replacement bar-end weights. Eventually I found them on the Kawasaki Versys forum, and the price was cheap enough, so I pulled the trigger.
The Versys specific S4 kit (available at Twisted Throttle) comes complete with the aluminum backbone, which has adjustable clamps on the inside end, to aid in the placement on the bars. The outside end attaches through the optional bar-end weights, screwing into the stock threads within the bars. These attach and adjust easily, allowing movement, to fit the best location amidst the controls.
The plastic hand guard is then placed over the backbone, secured using a small plastic clamp. While the plastic guard provides protection from the elements, it’s the solid backbone that will offer protection, in the event of a crash.
Once installed, the system seems solid, and gives confidence that it will offer a level of protection for both inclement weather, and in the event the bike is laid down.
For a great example of the type of protection this product offers, check out the video below.