ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Motorcycle Handlebars

Updated on October 25, 2017

Motorcycle Handlebars - Stock and After Market, New and Vintage

Read all about Motorcycle Handlebars:

  • Different Styles of Motorcycle Handlebars
  • Choosing the Right Handlebars and Risers
  • Where to Buy Your New Handlebars
  • How to Replace Your Handlebars
  • Custom or Factory
  • New, New Old Stock or Antique
  • American, European or Asian

Buck Horn Handle Bars
Buck Horn Handle Bars

Buckhorn Handlebars

because Stock Sucks

If these handlebars look familiar... well, that probably explains why you're here. Buckhorn handlebars where and are the factory-stock handlebars of many cruiser-style motorcycles models throughout the years. There's nothing wrong with Buckhorns, they can look pretty good if done right - subtle, maybe even retro. But even when done well, to most bikers, Buckhorns scream stock... and Stock Sucks.

Why are they called "Buckhorns," anyway. Bucks have antlers, not horns. They look like bull horns to me.

This is how to do Buckhorns right.

2012 Harley Davidson Sportster with stock Buckhorn Handlebars

Buckhorn Handlebars

Ape Hangers
Ape Hangers

Ape Hangers

for the Easy Rider

Ape Hangers (Apehangers) are the quintessential "Biker" handlebars. They're high bars and get their name because they look like the rider is hanging from the bars like an ape hanging from a branch.

In the 60s and 70s, when the aftermarket motorcycle parts market was much small than it is today, custom parts where made rather than bought. Apehangers used to be made out of the frames of those old bent-tube chrome dining chairs.

Steering with Apehangers requires much more body-leaning than with lower bars. For this reason, most states no longer allow handlebar grips to be higher than the rider's shoulders.

Black Drag Bars
Black Drag Bars

Drag Bars

the Standard for Custom Cruisers and Bar Hoppers

Drag Bars are nearly straight and flat; they offer a very clean look and plenty of reach room for taller riders. Shorter riders may compensate for this extra reach by using risers with a built in offset. Forward Controls complete the look.

Drag bars often require higher-than-stock risers in order for the bars to clear the tank. This configuration developed into the T-Bar.

Drag Bar Handlebars

Cheap Broomstick Handle Bars
Cheap Broomstick Handle Bars

Broomstick Handlebars

Drag Bars to the Extreme

Broomstick Bars are absolutely straight and tend to be rather short (often just over two feet wide), offering little comfort for the wrist or the back, but they look good. They don't have much room for handlebar mounted gauges, controls and such - making them look even better.

Bonus: since they're basically straight steel tubes, they tend to be CHEAP!

Broomstick Handle Bars

T-Bar Motorcycle Handlebars
T-Bar Motorcycle Handlebars


T Bars are Drag Bars or Broomstick Bars with built-in, usually high, risers.

on Indian Larry's "Rolex"

Harley Davidson 1" Z-Bars
Harley Davidson 1" Z-Bars

Z Bars

Z-Bars (sometimes Zee Bars) have two angles on each side, forming "Z" shapes. A very broad category of handlebars, they can rise as high as Apehangers or be as low as Drag Bars. They can be made of straight or curved bar stock. The angles can be 90°, more than 90°, less than 90° of a combination of angles.

Z Bars were popular in the 60s and early 70s due to their being easy-to-make by the home mechanic. They were largely unseen in the 80s and 90s and have come back in to popularity in the last decade.

Pullback Handlebars
Pullback Handlebars

Pullback Handlebars

for Choppers Only

Pullback Handlebars do just that: they pull back from the risers to the rider - far back. Pullbacks are really only useful on super-long bikes like custom Choppers and VW Trikes.

Most home customizers will be better off using Pullback Risers to shorten the reach.

on OCC's U.S. Biker Law

Pull-Back Handle Bars

on a Volkswagen Trike

Cafe Bike - Clubman handlebars
Cafe Bike - Clubman handlebars

Clubman Handlebars

Cafe Cool

Clubmans were the cool handlebars to have in the British Cafe Bike scene, circa 1960s. They still are, today.

The first Cafe Bike handlebars were stock Bullhorns mounted upside down to allow for a tucked and more aerodynamic riding position. Ton Up!

Clubman Handle Bars

Clip-On Handlebars
Clip-On Handlebars

Clip On Handlebars

Crotch Rocket Standard

Standard equipment on today's Sport Bikes, Clip-Ons are the evolved form of Clubmans (much as Sport Bikes are an evolved form of Cafe Bikes). Clip-Ons clip onto the front forks and allow for a low seating position centered over the forks - very streamlined, very responsive.

Although most often seen on Sports Bikes, they can look great on custom Choppers and Bobbers, too. take a look at Russell Mitchell's creation, below.

on Exile Cycles "Pure Sex Dragster"

Clip-on Handle Bars

Six-Bend Handlebars

70s Cool

Six Bend Handlebars have 6 bends - 3 on each side. It's like having Ape Hangers and Pullbacks in one package. The last time that I saw 6-Bend Handlebars was in the movie Purple Rain. You don't see 6-Bends anymore, but they're a part of Custom Motorcycle history.

What else could someone as funky as Prince ride?

You don't see 6-Bends anymore, but they're a part of Custom Motorcycle history.

Six-Bend Handle Bars

Chubby Handlebars

Size Matters

Handlebars used to be 7/8" in diameter, then Harley Davidson started making 1" bars. Today, 1 1/4" is the new custom-bike standard.

How to Change Your Motorcycle Handlebars Video

Choosing your new handlebars. Removing bars, gauges, levers and cables. Installing the new bars.

Handlebar Risers

Adjusting your handlebars by choosing the right Risers.

What Kind of Handlebars are on Your Bike?

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • SarthakBhutani profile image

      Sarthak Bhutani 

      8 months ago

      Handlebars differ according to the type of motorcycle like mostly a cruiser has a long and wide handlebar, racing bikes have clip-on for added aggressiveness. You can refer to for more.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I have recently started a site, the info you provide on this website has helped me tremendously. Thanks for all of your time &amp work. The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined effort of each individual. by Vince Lombardi. kddcekefdccg


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)