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· The Sheriff
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Many ATV owners will notice during long rides, an excess of fatigue in different areas of their body depending on the type of riding that they're doing. No matter what quad we're riding, rather it be the Can-Am Renegade 800, a Yamaha Grizzly 700 or a Kawasaki Brute Force 750, we always experience one thing that is common: wrist fatigue. Many riders will attribute this to just being out of shape rather than a design flaw that it seems that all utility manufacturers are sickened with. While you may be experiencing wrist fatigue from being out of shape, it is most likely worse due to the geometry of the factory handle bars. Additionally, depending on how far away from you the bars are actually positioned, over a long ride, you may even experience pain in your back.

The problem is that because of the angle of the handlebars, specifically where you place your hands on the grips, it doesn't allow your hands to be positioned perpendicular to the end of your arm, thus the resulting pain after a long trip.
So, the idea is to find a bar that has a straighter bend to it that will keep your hands in a more comfortable position. Looking at the image below, you can see that FASST has designed this bar to be much more ergonomically correct for hand and wrist position which will result in longevity of the rider over long or aggressive rides.

Therefore, with every quad build we do, one of the most important things for us to change is the handlebars and there is a plethora of companies that make after-market handlebars. However, one company stands out as a leader in the handlebar market. FASST Company has been so successful in their product R&D that almost anyone who is anyone in the race circuit is running their bars. That fact in itself is intriguing enough to us that we wanted to find our what all the hype is about.

FASST Company makes their Flexx Bars available in a huge variety of bends and heights so you can choose a product that will be perfect for your application. Not only that, but the most fascinating feature of their FASST Flexx Bars is that they actually have a type of shock absorption system built into them. Yep, handlebars with suspension. Now they've thought of everything! The idea behind this concept is that as your vehicle, whether it be a quad or a cycle, transfers vibration or the pounding of bumps, ruts or jumps, up the steering stem to the bars and then to the riders hands, elbows and shoulders, the bars actually absorb all of that energy to greatly reduce what is felt by the rider. Further more, the amount of transfer is adjustable by making a quick change to the elastomers that are bolted to the bars and are what actually absorbs the impact and/or vibration. Available in four different colors (black, red, blue and yellow) the elastomer color indicates how soft or hard that particular elastomer is and how much vibration it will reduce.

So, what FASST Company has done with this setup is produce a handlebar package that by design, is intended to reduce joint pain and rider fatigue by providing a proper bend and vibration absorption.

Initial Impression
At first glance, the FASST Flexx Bars are by far the most interesting looking set of handlebars we have ever laid eyes on. With their hinges, shock absorbing elastomers and impressive looking crossbars they appear to be very functional while extremely durable at the same time. The tubing diameter where they mount to your quad or motorcycle is a full 1 1/8 inch for superior strength. because of this, keep in mind that for your particular application you may need to get risers to actually get them to fit your vehicle. While some bar clamps come from the factory for 1 1/8 inch bars, others are designed for 7/8 inch diameter bars. for those designed for 7/8 inch bars, you will have to buy risers to convert your bar clamp to the proper size.

Because our test quad came fitted from the factory with 1 1/8 inch bars, we were not required to use risers. However, we chose to install a really nice set of Rox SpeedFX 2 inch risers on our quad anyway. The reason we did this was that with the factory setup of the FASST Flexx Bars, they almost felt a little too close to the rider. So, for additional rider comfort, we installed the Rox SpeedFX 2 inch risers pointing straight forward to move the bars away from the rider a bit. This was a suggestion of the folks at Rox SpeedFX and proved to be a great idea.

<img border="0" src="" width="500" height="750" align="left" hspace="12">The risers that we received from Rox SpeedFX were the Rox pivoting ATV handlebar risers. Although we chose to pivot ours all the way forward to get the bars as far away from us as we could, the pivot concept allows the installer to change the angle of the risers to not allow move the bars closer or farther away from the rider, but also to change the height of the bars for optimum ride comfort and maneuverability. The end result is that the rider has a more balanced feeling when riding in a sitting or standing position.

Ride Report
Upon finally getting the risers and bars mounted, as well as all of our accessories like GPS mount, PIAA lights, winch controller, etc, we were finally ready for our test ride. The first thing we noticed, as every time we have changed bars on something, was the improved ride comfort of the machine which is immediately obvious. The bar angle was much more suitable and made the quad feel more motocross-like in it's handlebar stance. Although our Renegade 800-X came with Pro Taper bars from the factory, the FASST Flexx Bars already felt better simply due to the angle change. We chose the 15 degree quad racer bend for our application.

Our test ride included a trail ride of approximately 4 miles through heavily washed out red clay trails. We started out with red elastomers since that was the way the bars were shipped. While we noticed an improvement in the reduction of force received by our hands and arms, we decided to try the next softest compound. After hitting the trail again at about the same aggressiveness, we did indeed notice an improvement in the shock absorption characteristics of the bars. however, we wanted to know how much better it could get, so set off back to the shop for a final elastomer swap to the softest set. After trying our trail yet a third time, we decided the softest elastomers best fit our setup and riding style and provided maximum vibration reduction and shock absorption.

Satisfied with the softest elastomer option we set out to determine how well the bars reduced felt vibration. While testing with a an identical vehicle and nearly the same setup, we estimated close to a 50% reduction in engine and ground vibration that is typically transferred through the bars and into the riders arms. This transfer of energy is unnecessary and results in negative effects such as rider fatique and arm pump which plagues many riders. FASST Flexx Bars eliminate a good bit of these problems allowing you to go faster and further.

Overall, I can't think of a way to have gotten more satisfaction out of upgrading the handlebars on our project quad. The FASST Flexx Bars, with the proper bend and height, in our opinion, provides one of the best bangs for the buck for improved rideability and rider comfort. Coupled with the Rox SpeedFX pivoting handlebar risers, the FASST Flexx Bars fit the bill for making your ATV much more comfortable and improving rider control, while reducing joint and muscle fatigue resulting from improper handlebar angle and positioning.

Contact Information:
Fasst Company
(Web site) Fasst Company - Home of the Flexx Handlebars
(Phone) 562.601.8119
(Email) [email protected]
(Address) Fasst Company, 3015 E. South St., Long Beach, CA. 90805

Rox SpeedFX
(Web site) Rox Risers Handlebar Risers for Snowmobiles, ATVs, and Motorcycles
(Phone) 218.326.1794
(Email) [email protected]
(Address) Rox Speed FX Inc. is located in Northern Minnesota

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