Do You Need a Heel Guard on Your Chopper?

A heel guard can prevent burning the feels and soles of your motorcycle boots.

If you have foot rests instead of foot pegs on your bike, you may want to add this touch to protect your boots from those hot pipes and parts that are so close to your feet when operating your bike. These heel guards are available for both rider and passenger, both left side and ride side mount.

Foot protection is really important when you ride a motorcycle. Smart riders just do not ride without putting on supportive, sturdy riding boots. These boot have either leather or rubber soles, but the heels are almost always rubber or a composite material that includes rubber and will be damaged if exposed to enough head. A really good pair of motorcycle boots is an investment and you really do not want to purchase a pair, get them just broken in really well, and then burn up the heel, now, do you? But it happens all the time. If the damage is very serious, the boots either have to be re-heeled at a boot and shoe shop or they have to be replaced. The solution is this simple little device called the heel guard.

The heel-guard is a complicated device. Basically, it is a simple chromed and shaped rod that mounts so that the rider's boot can not contact the pipes or, if you have removed your heel shifter, the crank case. The heelguard designs are available in turned-up, turned-out, straight, and physically-challenged models. This simply means the rod is shaped so that is curves around the heel of the boot, preventing you from placing your foot too far back and that the end of the heelguard will be shaped as described. The physically-challenged models simply have a curve that fits around the heel of the boot, helping keep the foot in place exactly where it should be for proper operation of the brake  and/or shift control levers.

The heel guard installation requires that you loosen your foot guard on the side on which you are mounting the heel guard. It isn't even necessary to completely remove the foot guard. You'll need a drill with a ΒΌ" drill bit, a pair of needle nose pliers, a 7/16" wrench, mounting bolt and locking nut, and a 5/32 hex key. The hex key is included with most heel guards. All you have to do is loosen your footboard cover and rotate it out of the way, align the rod, mark the correct location of the required mounting hole, drill, bolt the heel guard on, and replace the footboard cover. It only takes a few minutes to complete the process.

You'll often see heel guards used by Harley-Davidson and Indian riders on classic rides. But they are available for metrics as well. Because the mounting is done on the footboard itself, it isn't as if you are buying an engine part. The only reason you have to purchase by make and model is so that the heel guard you select will mount without touching the exhaust pipes or crank case.

The price of a heelguard for your motorcycle is small compared to ruining  a good set of boots. In fact, you can have heel-guards on all four footboards for less than the cost of one pair of quality riding boot!

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