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Try to bend my handlebars back into shape, or replace them?
#1
So I got caught in the funky weather front that brought down a mix of snow, sleet and rain at approximately 4pm on Sunday, 26 Feb 2012.

For most of the afternoon, the weather was great out in the UBC/Kitsilano area so I thought I'd make my way down to White Rock, a favorite destination of mine.

I saw that the sky looked dark as I approached the Oak Street Bridge and already began anticipating that I may turn around in Richmond depending on how badly rain would come down. I've already been caught in a few downpours that had soaked through my textile gear (with and without the waterproof liner), and once in my recently purchased racing leathers.

Imagine my concern when I got onto the bridge deck and the first few flecks of snow started splatting against my visor.

Then imagine my increasing anxiety as I reached halfway across the bridge in the middle of white out conditions that had me brushing the snow off my visor every few seconds while trying to maintain control of my bike.

I had been able to get off onto Sea Island Way and I SHOULD have stopped off at the gas station to wait out the weather front and/or used my mobile internet to determine which towing company to contact to bring myself and my bike back home if the weather didn't break.

Instead, I risked trying to ride home by taking Bridgeport on my way to the Arthur Lang Bridge in hopes to get back to Vancouver.

And as I approached Number 3 Road, that's when I completely lost traction and my bike dropped on me onto its right side.

Fortunately, I had added some aftermarket engine crash guards to my 2003 Suzuki GS 500 which added an extra 2 inches or so of width at the bottom of my bike. That decision probably saved my right ankle from getting crushed by 400 lbs of motorcycle.

I'd like to take this opportunity to point out that it is such a freaky sensation to try to make your body go limp during a fall/crash when your instinct is to seize up every muscle in your body. But after I felt my body stop sliding, I had to pull my right leg free and scramble up onto my feet in order to make myself look large so that none of the vehicles coming up behind me would run me over. (Okay, I was also trying to preserve my bike as I stood my ground and was effectively waving the drivers to avoid hitting my bike instead of potentially running off the road to get myself out of harms way. LOL)

Anyway, a good Samaritan helped me pick up my bike off the road while another assisted me in wheeling it off the road.

I spent the next hour at Subway using my mobile browser to look for a towing company that could take me and my bike home when the weather front passed and the roads started clearing.

I then assessed my bike and, aside from scratches on my crash guards and muffler, the only significant damage appeared to be that my handlebar on the right side was bent slightly toward the rear.

And aside from my right ankle being sore (eventually diagnosed as sprained), my leather racing suit with all its CE armour and motorcycle boots did their job to protect me, so I was none the worse for wear and I rode my bike home. (Okay, I admit, perhaps it was not the smartest idea at the time, but I managed to get home safely.)

So my question is, do I try to bend my handlebars back into shape, or simply replace them?
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#2
Replace them, no matter how much they cost, or how broke you are!
They are weakened, and will be even weaker when you bend them back.
Bars for that bike are not that much.
BC Children's Hospital Foundation Balding for Dollars

Email Bernie: PRSMechanic(at)hotmail(dot)com
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