Unless you ride a bike with standard-equipment cruise control, you’ve probably gotten an urgent message from your right wrist at some point during a long trip telling you it’s time to stop and take a break. Throttle brakes are a cheap and easy way to give those aching muscles some relief without stopping.
Bear in mind that throttle brakes are not true cruise controls. They hold the throttle open at a set position but don’t maintain the bike’s speed on hills or downgrades. Not to be confused with some kind of throttle “lock,” all of the models listed here can be overridden by rolling the throttle closed. Nevertheless you should use them only when the road ahead is clear and traffic is light, and only for a short time. Here are some of the most popular models.
The Cadillac of throttle brakes in terms of looks, operation and price (some models sell for just under $200). The brake is set by a pushbutton and is released with either a manual lever or by moving the front brake lever slightly. Made of billet aluminum, it looks like a factory part. The BrakeAway isn’t a one-size-fits-all; specific applications are available for Harley-Davidson, Honda, Kawasaki, Star, Suzuki, Triumph, Victory and Yamaha models. None are compatible with heated grips.
Kaoko throttle brakes hold the grip at your chosen setting using friction from a knurled adjustment ring in the end of the handlebar. There are more than 150 unique models to fit just about any bike, including those with most brands of heated grips or OE and aftermarket handguards. All are pricey ($130-$200) but look like OE parts when installed.
Kaoko Cruise Controls
A simple and inexpensive ($19.95) throttle brake that can be installed with no tools in literally a few seconds. It rotates with the throttle grip while you ride, and when you want to set it, position the throttle and push down on the front of the Go Cruise. There’s just enough friction to hold it and the throttle in place, and when you roll off the throttle it swings back up out of the set position. Easy to swap between bikes or remove and carry in a pocket or tank bag.
Go Cruise Universal
The aluminum version of the Go Cruise has an adjustable gear for controlling the friction, and can be engaged by either pressing down with your index finger or pushing up with your thumb. Rolling off the throttle automatically disengages it. It comes in black or chrome for $30.
This grip-friction throttle brake sells for $49.95 and is made of billet aluminum with stainless-steel hardware. There’s a plastic thumb knob to adjust the friction to accommodate different grip diameters and materials. The thumb lever on the rear lets you flip it into position easily; rolling off the gas resets it. It’s just ¼-inch wide so it takes up very little space on the grip.
For years the most popular universal throttle brake, the Vista Cruise ($37) needs only a bit of bare handlebar to secure its inner clamp. From there, the connector bar stabilizes the friction control, which wraps around the grip. An easily operated and adjustable thumb lever holds and releases the throttle. Tools and shim material are provided. The Vista Cruise comes in 7⁄8-inch and 1-inch models and fits many BMW, Honda, Harley-Davidson, Kawasaki, Moto Guzzi, Star, Suzuki, Triumph and Yamaha models.
Sound Off Recreational Inc.
The NEP ($22) is made of tough and lightweight nylon and has a single Allen adjuster screw to set the friction, and a thumb lever to grip and release the throttle. It was originally designed for dual-cable Hondas, but with a little imagination it can be adapted to a wide variety of brands and models. It comes with an Allen wrench for the
Sound Off Recreational Inc.
Ranging in price from $127 to $155, the Throttlemeister mounts in the handlebar end, replacing the bar-end weight. It engages by turning it the same direction as opening the throttle, and disengages in the direction of shutting it off. Several finishes are available, including black, polished, black-on-black milled, silver milled and black-and-silver milled. Includes a matching bar-end weight for the clutch side.
Marker Machine Inc.