Review by James Parchman
[This GenMar Bar Risers for Honda ST1300 Review was originally published in the July 2007 issue of Rider magazine]
Suggestion to designers of sport-touring motorcycles: the buyers of your machines just might not be those limber, long-armed young models pictured in your ads.
Why not consider moving those handlebars a bit higher, or even making them adjustable, to better fit the people actually spending the big bucks for your sport-touring bikes? Alternatively, convene a focus group and study the problem for the next 10 years…while aftermarket suppliers continue to churn out gazillions of gadgets that put said bars right in the rider’s sweet spot, and turn those STs, FJRs, Connies and Beemers into the long-range, all-day machines we really wanted!
Rant complete, we return to product evaluation. Having been an owner (and bar raiser) of a Honda ST1100, we were hopeful that one modification incorporated in the new ST would be higher handlebars. The Honda ST1300’s bars are more comfortable, and possibly adequate for many riders, but with a 3,000-mile trip upcoming our tester wimped out and opted for even more height. Many riser options exist for the Honda, from eBay to Euro branded, but with previous success from a first-generation set of GenMars, we opted to give its modern product a try. A toll-free call confirmed the company made a ST13-specific riser (raises 11 1/4-inch, moves back 1 inch) and could ship immediately. A quick ka-ching on the Visa sent our order on its way.
GenMar’s finely finished, billet aluminum risers match the Honda bars very closely and seem a good value at just $129.95. Installation was simple. Excellent directions are included with the product and on the company’s informative website. No hose extensions were necessary, and the only work required to accomplish full lock-to-lock bar movement was zip-tying a few hanging lines. The steering stem cover assembly fit securely in place, and ignition key access was unimpeded. Time from box open to ready to ride: 30 minutes.
The increase in bar height proved a good balance in keeping the feel of the ST on the sporty side without excessively bending our AARP-qualified body. We prefer the ST with its electric windscreen in the full lowered position; this allows excellent handling input at any speed while enjoying the comfortable ride this heavy bike delivers. Bars raised, our tester accomplished his 3,000-mile trip, straight of stature, and full of praise for GenMar’s product.
GenMar is located in Arrey, New Mexico, a small town north of Las Cruces on Interstate 25, with great riding opportunities in the mountains to its west. The company produces bar risers for almost any motorcycle imaginable, as well as models of popular scooters. Purchase is via phone or the Web. If you’re near Arrey, stop in and they will install your purchased equipment. The company also restores antique bikes, with plans in the works for a showroom to display their classics.
Note: A great information source for those interested in the Honda ST1300 and the earlier ST1100 is www.st1100.org. There you can find all sorts of information and advice from owners worldwide, happy to share their experiences with these outstanding machines.
For more information contact GenMar Mfg. Company Inc., 110 1st Street, HC #1, Box 35, Arrey, New Mexico 87930; (877) 471-1515; www.genmarmfg.com