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Windvest On a 2016 Road Glide Ultra FLTRU

Johnny Humble Reviews a New Windvest

By Johnny Humble
2/27/2017


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The Road Glide Ultra with the Windvest 12.5" Smoked Screen. The profile is still an accentuation of what Harley designed, but with a bit of nastiness added in. I was determined to put it through the ringer.
The Road Glide Ultra with the Windvest 12.5" Smoked Screen. The profile is still an accentuation of what Harley designed, but with a bit of nastiness added in. I was determined to put it through the ringer.

 

 

My wife and I were recently exploring options to add to our new 2016 Harley-Davidson Road Glide Ultra (FLTRU) and we were really impressed and curious with the quality of Windvest Motorcycle Products out of Morgan Hill, Ca. We observed thousands of bikes at the recent Lone Star Rally and the number of options for what shield to use is almost limitless. With the resurgence of the Road Glide, it appears every custom builder in the world is building one. What we were looking for was less of a showpiece and more of a shield that looked great while performing better than stock. We had seen a few bikes utilizing the Windvest over the past few years and have noticed the popularity of the California windshield makers’ product and quality. Like most consumers today, we turned to the web for some information on the shield as well as options. We liked their website as it contained information about the origin, quality, and design of the shields as well as a FAQ’s section that answers a few of the little nuances necessary when choosing a screen or shield. Here’s a section that was on their website about the company itself:

 

This is the Ultimate Harley Touring Rig! Meant for the long haul, she eats miles like I devour donuts and cakes. I absolutely love the way the RGU handles in all situations.
This is the Ultimate Harley Touring Rig! Meant for the long haul, she eats miles like I devour donuts and cakes. I absolutely love the way the RGU handles in all situations.
 

 

The view from behind the stock 15" windshield. Harley engineers spent many hours behind this screen in a wind tunnel to ensure they had created a functional screen that flowed with the bikes lines.
The view from behind the stock 15" windshield. Harley engineers spent many hours behind this screen in a wind tunnel to ensure they had created a functional screen that flowed with the bikes lines.

 

 

In 1989, after a windblown, bug-ridden ride to Sturgis, the founder of WindVest, Norm Dober, had a dilemma. He wasn’t happy with the way windshields looked and performed. So he decided to build his own.  Fashioned from a windshield rescued from a friend's garage, he began to "tweak".                                         

After years of fine-tuning the windshield in his garage, the first WindVest was created, and the legend began.

Parts were built by a local machinist and then polished in a spare bedroom. The fledgling company was the talk of the neighborhood as customers began rolling in and the UPS truck appeared on an almost daily basis. As with so many small beginnings WindVest moved out of the garage and has never looked back.

Over the years, that one WindVest, grew into many, and WindVest Motorcycle Products now sells its sport windshields throughout the world. Although WindVest is the leader in performance windscreens, the spirit born from Norm’s garage lives on there today.

Today, WindVest is making inroads in other areas of motorcycle windshields with its line of WideBody performance windscreens for Harley-Davidson and metric cruisers. More than a decade after the original WindVest made it’s debut, the company’s goal remains the same – to continue offering the best high performance motorcycle windscreens with unparalleled customer service, year after year.

 

More information can be found about the company and available products by following the attached link or click on their logo on the homepage. http://windvest.com

 

Because we are senior board members of the Bikernet Interplanetary Coalition, I was able to reach out to Bandit for a trial and review of one of the Windvest Shields. Of course, he didn’t disappoint and we placed an order immediately for the 12” Gun Smoke version. Our bike came stock with a 15” clear shield and while the performance was great for both of us, I wanted a change. Partly because of looks, but partly because of function. I had recently rolled my stock handlebars forward and the new location caused my bars to hit the windshield at full turn. I really loved the feel of the new bar position but wasn’t crazy about possibly damaging my stock windscreen or creating an issue during sharp turn or u-turn situations.

 

Within a week of my order, we received the box at our front door with enough peanut shells inside I was afraid they forgot my shield. Thankfully, it was nested neatly inside with a small catalog, instructions for installation and care, and a handful of stickers to hand out to friends.

 

I literally spent 5 minutes removing the stock shield and replacing it with the Windvest 12” Smoke. The entire operation requires loosening the 4 stock scews and sliding the old shield off before slipping the new shield on. The cuts in the Windvest natched perfectly and it slipped right into place on the RG fairing. Initial thoughts were the shield was just as wide as stock, but definitely more stylish. I also liked the dark tint and couldn’t wait to ride the next day to work testing out the shield. I was concerned with the height, as I didn’t want the wind to flip off the top of the shield right into my helmeted head or my wife’s face when she’s in the back.

 

I ride using a combination of helmets depending upon my conditions and sometimes run with a full face, sometimes with a beanie, and sometimes without one at all. I have since ridden win all 3 situations multiple times since putting on the Windvest, and can pleasantly report the results are great. This team did their R&D before sending this shield into the market.

 

Not once did I have an issue with wind buffeting using this screen for either myself or my passenger no matter which helmets we wore. My wife did notice a larger amount of wind with the Windvest, but nothing disturbing as the air was very “clean” and there was almost zero turbulence.

 

The Windsplitter flows nicely with the fairing and provided decent protection considering it had half the width on top.
The Windsplitter flows nicely with the fairing and provided decent protection considering it had half the width on top.

 

 

 

The sounds of the radio could still be heard at highway speeds very easily, which was differential to when I used Harley’s Windsplitter 15” screen. While that screen looks good on the Road Glide, it’s performance was not as great as I would’ve hoped for. The turbulence was greater on the sides of my head when wearing a fullface helmet and the music was very distorted because of it during my lidless rides. Overall the Windvest blew both of these negatives off the road!

 

Parked view of the Windvest. Not as tall as stock, but still a great amount of protection.
Parked view of the Windvest. Not as tall as stock, but still a great amount of protection.

 

 

The profile of the bike now has a different tone and almost gives the bike an aggressive look. I like the fit and finish of the Windvest even after an evening bug0storm that put the shield to the test. I am happy to report my wife and I weren’t effected by the bugs at all and can honestly say although the shield is shorter, it’s design worked at least as great as the stock larger shield.

 

The bugs blasted the shield and not my face. I was a little surprised by the amount of scratches I did get after a week and a half of riding the bike every day. I accumulated close to 400 miles on the shield so far, but will have to test her for a longer duration to give the true durability review.
The bugs blasted the shield and not my face. I was a little surprised by the amount of scratches I did get after a week and a half of riding the bike every day. I accumulated close to 400 miles on the shield so far, but will have to test her for a longer duration to give the true durability review.

 

 

The RGU looks regal next to the batwing. I was truly surprised to learn the Batwing is actually wider by almost 2" than the RGU shark nose.
The RGU looks regal next to the batwing. I was truly surprised to learn the Batwing is actually wider by almost 2" than the RGU shark nose.

 

 

A shark among the seals
A shark among the seals

 


Since we put the shield on, many in our riding group and friends have commented about the look and asked for information on the shield as there are so many options out there. If you are considering a new windscreen for your Road Glide, shoot over and check out their website to look at the different designs and sizes. They make options for many of Harley’s models as well as some of the other motorcycle makes currently being built. Give ‘em a shout and tell them Johnny from Bikernet sent you their way. Thanks and continue to watch for different reviews from Johnny Humble and Bikernet.com. This is one I definitely give a positive thumbs up!

 

The Landshark even makes this flamed bagger look better! On a serious note, the stock shield has it's pluses as well as minuses. The Windvest is high on cool points and beats the function of the stock shield in several areas.
The Landshark even makes this flamed bagger look better! On a serious note, the stock shield has it's pluses as well as minuses. The Windvest is high on cool points and beats the function of the stock shield in several areas.
 
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