Installing Mirror Leashes
by Rob Taylor
Due to overwhelming demand I have laboriously typed out these instructions to install mirror leashes.
I’ll say this to start > I received one message that said you can buy a leash kit from BOB’s BMW. How much I can’t say. Like the sender of that info, I prefer to make things myself. If any of you remember my helmet cable and jacket cable lock posting I wrote sometime back, I had a couple responses. One saying they could buy the same thing at a bicycle store. How ingenuous.
To get started I’ll answer a question. The side view mirrors are held on by spring clips that snap on to bolts attached to the bike. These are much harder to get on than to inadvertently knock off. This type of mirror is found on K1100RS, RT? and LT and I’m not sure what other models. <<<There is a simple test>>>:)
First go to a sporting goods or fishing tackle store and purchase a small spool of “wire leader” and the appropriate sleeves to crimp the wire. You will also need 2 snap swivels. You’ll have enough leader to do about 50 bikes. The shortest length I could find was 30 ft. I used 90# (41 kg) stainless steel wire and 2 medium sized snap swivels. You DO NOT NEED TO buy the crimping tool for the wire leader. What you are doing doesn’t require the extra expense. Pliers will work fine. Just test all the crimps. All the parts cost me about $6.00.
2. With the bike on the center stand grasp the mirror and push forward. It should just snap off. (Remove both.) Remove the trim piece between the tank and the faring. Take loose the plastic piece that holds the fuel gauge and the coolant temp. gauge. You do not need to remove these completely, you just need to get access to the nuts that hold the mirror mounts on (self locking nuts). Decide which mounting bolt you wish to secure one end of the leash to and loosen it (do both sides). I used the lower of the three.
3. Go to fridge, get cold beer. It’s time for a break.
4. Now that you’re well rested and refreshed, take out the leader line and cut two pieces about 3 inches long (that’s 8 cm for you metric people). Slide two sleeves on the wire make an eye in both ends and crimp the sleeves. Ensure one of the eyes is large enough to fit over the bolt head you loosened earlier. Now put one of the eyes over the bolt head and tighten them up. You can put everything else back on the bike now. (Except the mirrors.)
5. ‘Bout time for another beer.
6. Now cut two more pieces of leader. I was happy the way things turned out with about 6 inches, of wire that is. Slide a sleeve on the wire, run that same end through the swivel eye of a snap swivel then back into the sleeve and crimp it (do both). This next part requires a little manual dexterity. Pick up one of the mirrors. Take the bare end of the wire and slide a sleeve over the end, feed the wire into the mirror and loop it around the metal cross piece. (Some description, aye.) You’ll see what I’m talking about when you look inside the mirror housing. Slide the end into the sleeve, pull out the slack and crimp it. Do the other side and you’re almost done.
7. Connect the snap swivel to the eye in the other wire. Give the wire a couple good tugs to make sure all the crimps hold. Connect the turn signal wire and put the mirror back on and you are finished.
Any questions, I’m just an e-mail away.
Rob Taylor <firstname.lastname@example.org>