A sissy bar is a great addition for a motorcycle, whether it is for form or function. A sissy bar is a metal bar that attaches to the rear of the motorcycle, just behind the seat. It is used to provide a back rest for a passenger riding the bike, a convenient place to strap bags or other objects and an added splash of decoration. Making a sissy bar for a motorcycle can save quite a bit of money and only takes a little time.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- 1/2-inch diameter metal pipe, 30 inches long
- Grinder with cutting and buffing wheels
- Measuring tape
- Welding torch
- Metal mounting brackets
- Drill with metal bit
- Grease pencil
Cut the pipe in half with a cutting wheel attached to the grinder. Replace the cutting wheel with a buffing wheel and prepare both ends of the pipes for welding. Remove any paint and smooth the edges.
Place one end of a pipe into a vice so one inch of the pipe is gripped with the jaws of the vice. Close the jaws until the end of the pipe collapses completely and the walls of the pipe touch. Repeat with the other pipe.
Measure the width of the rear of the bike, using the frame as points of reference. The sissy bar will mount to the frame, so the bottom of the sissy bar needs to be wide enough to fit around the body.
Place the two pipes in a "V" with the crimped ends touching and the undamaged ends the measured distance away from each other. Weld the crimped ends together.
Weld a mounting bracket to each of the pipes, on the ends that are not connected. Attach the mounting brackets to the inside of the "V" shape.
Place the sissy bar in position and use a grease pencil to mark where the bolt holes will go on the frame. Carefully drill holes through the frame. Insert the bolts and tighten them down.
Tips and warnings
- A curved sissy bar can be made by using pipe-bending tools or using a solid metal rod, heating it up with a cutting torch and bending it around a round, metal object. Longer sissy bars can be made, but anything over 18 inches in total length should have a support member added for stability.
- If the sissy bar is more for comfort than show, padding and other upholstery can be added to allow it to function more like a seat back.
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