When Kawasaki set out to build their Drifter motorcycle between 1999 and 2005, they had a single goal in mind: to create a modern version of the classic Indian Chief popular in the 1940s and 1950s, and extremely sought after as collector's items today. As a result, many of the chrome dress-up parts that are or were intended for use on the Indian Chief can be used on the Kawasaki Drifter. There are two types of bumper tips that are available. One type is bumper bumpers, which are chrome rails that protect the bumper from dings, and the second type is chrome bolt-on or stick-on bumper covers.
Reproduction Front and Rear Fender Tips
Front bumper tips for the Kawasaki Drifter motorcycle can be sourced by utilising parts originally intended for use on the Indian Chief. Reproduction Indian Chief motorcycle bumper tips can be installed onto the Kawasaki Drifter with only minimal modification. Because the original Indian Chief utilised bolt-on bumper covers, and the Kawasaki Drifter does not have mounting holes in the front of the bumper, you will have to either cut off the mounting bolts on the reproduction tip or drill holes into your Kawasaki bumper. Reproduction rear bumper tips are available in styles that match the styling of reproduction front bumper tips. You can find reproductions through Indian restoration catalogues and at vintage motorcycle shops specialising in or carrying Indian motorcycle parts.
Original Equipment Indian Motorcycle Tips
While it is an expensive option, original equipment Indian motorcycle bumper tips will work on the Kawasaki Drifter. These bumper tips can most easily be found at motorcycle swap meets or online through auction sites. Original parts with good condition chrome will command a premium, so be aware that you may need to spend more to obtain these parts in good condition. Parts that are pitted or showing their age will be far less expensive, however, and can make a great addition to your Drifter.
Kawasaki Drifter Fender Tips
While Indian bumper tips will work on the Kawasaki Drifter, it is possible to purchase bumper tips specifically designed to work with the Kawasaki Drifter. The difference between these designs is in the way in which the bumper tip is mounted. Rather than having to modify the bumper or the tip, Kawasaki Drifter bumper tips use either a double-sided sponge tape to secure the bumper tip to the bumper, or a silicone glue. The Kawasaki Nomad and Mean Streak both use the same front bumper tips as well.
Another Option For Fender Tips
If you don't care for the look of bumper tips, but still want some level of protection for the front and rear bumper of your motorcycle, consider adding bumper rails. While bumper tips only protect the leading edge of the bumper, bumper rails wrap around the bumper completely, providing a bumper that will protect your bumper from dings and scratches at both the front and rear of the motorcycle. These bumper bumpers are installed by drilling into the side of the bumper and installing screws to secure that in place, but once installed, they make a pleasing addition to the styling of the Kawasaki Drifter.
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