Review by Reg Kittrelle
[This Klock Werks Flare Motorcycle Windshield Review was originally published in American Rider magazine]
My first bagger was an early-’90s Electra Glide Sport, which came equipped with a windshield. The first thing I did after getting it home was remove the windshield; you weren’t going to catch me hiding behind a shield! Real bikers keep their face in the wind! I maintained this bit of nonsensical thinking until a particularly cold, wet trip had me scurrying to reinstall that plastic piece of protection—and I haven’t been without a windshield since.
Although the wind and cold protection is great, I definitely don’t like looking through a glaring shield, and I don’t want its top edge bouncing around at my line of sight. My Road Glide shield provides the protection but stays out of sight. Until now I’ve settled on Harley’s 9.5-inch Low Profile option. It works well, but I’ve found an alternative that has most of the benefits, and a whole bunch more style.
The Klock Werks Flare replacement windshield for the Road Glide measures out at 8 inches tall, but gives the effective protection of Harley’s 9.5-inch piece. It does this via a unique reverse curl (hence, “Flare”) on its upper edge. This curl kicks the airflow up, allowing it to clear your helmet, as shown in the wind-tunnel picture. There’s no buffeting, and the shield’s edge is unobtrusive and unnoticed. Klock Werks claims this works for riders up to 6 feet tall.
The Flare’s effect, though, is not quite the same as the one it replaced. Note how the top curl follows the contour of the radio nacelle. Very stylish, but it does dump air around the nacelle, narrowing the protected area. Additionally, the air flows right into the backs of the mirrors, which, in turn, direct it towards the rider’s chest. The result does not cause buffeting, but it does put your chest area in the air stream.
After a bit more than 400 miles behind the Flare in cold and some wet weather, I’m happy with it. I get a clear, unobstructed view of the road, my head is unaffected by any buffeting, and as for the wind-on-the-chest part, my jacket handles that. If this is a bit too short for you, Klock Werks also manufactures a 12-inch model. At this writing it was not yet available, but should be by the time you read this. I’m interested in trying it also, but I’m happy with the shorter one.
The Flare’s quality appears to be excellent, and installation is a cinch using the stock hardware. There are three versions of the 8-incher: dark smoke polycarbonate, clear acrylic (paintable), and a tinted polycarbonate (the one I use).
All models list for $169.95 and are available from Klock Werks at www.kustomcycles.com, or call 605-996-3700.