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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yesterday I met up with Bob to have my CTX be the guinea pig for testing his Heel-to-Toe shifter. Bob did all the installation (besides myself handing him a few tools!) and the install went smooth.

So far:

1. It took approximately 3.5 seconds to adapt and get used to a heel-to-toe shifter again! I missed that on the CTX from my previous bikes. Like many things, once you use one...it's hard to get "unused to it"!

2. I rode home for about 45 miles. The shifter works flawlessly! Bob did a great job on this as far as measurements and dimensions. In other words, the heel peg is exactly where you'd want it. On my old VTX's I liked being able to have room on the floorboards to slide my feet forward and backwards. Bob's shifter allows this. Also, it's far back enough, and just above the floorboard enough, to keep my foot from sliding off the boards.

3. Takes very minimal effort to "step" it into the next gear.

4. The more I look at the pegs he used, the more I like the style!

5. I'm going riding in a little while and will see if anything's changed since yesterday. But so far, I am sold on this!


Some things I'll be thinking about:

1. Since it's aluminum I'm wondering if the consistency (?) will hold up; meaning, will the one screw bolted to the OEM shifter start to widen the drilled hole and loosen the shifter?

2. Would a steel shifter be more durable?

3. Angling my floorboards where they point more downward at the rear may be benefitial as I had to slightly adjust my seating position so I wouldn't accidentally step on the shifter with my heel.


I would want it powder-coated black but...personal preference!




The "old man" and his wrenches!!!




Bob taking my C for a test ride with the Heel-to-Toe shifter.

 

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Looks good. the Aluminum should be fine with how I remember the prototype. Aluminum will wear faster than steel, but it won't oxidize as easily. I would probably hit it with some automotive paint to get it black to match, but that's me.
 

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Yesterday I met up with Bob to have my CTX be the guinea pig for testing his Heel-to-Toe shifter. Bob did all the installation (besides myself handing him a few tools!) and the install went smooth.

So far:

1. It took approximately 3.5 seconds to adapt and get used to a heel-to-toe shifter again! I missed that on the CTX from my previous bikes. Like many things, once you use one...it's hard to get "unused to it"!

2. I rode home for about 45 miles. The shifter works flawlessly! Bob did a great job on this as far as measurements and dimensions. In other words, the heel peg is exactly where you'd want it. On my old VTX's I liked being able to have room on the floorboards to slide my feet forward and backwards. Bob's shifter allows this. Also, it's far back enough, and just above the floorboard enough, to keep my foot from sliding off the boards.

3. Takes very minimal effort to "step" it into the next gear.

4. The more I look at the pegs he used, the more I like the style!

5. I'm going riding in a little while and will see if anything's changed since yesterday. But so far, I am sold on this!


Some things I'll be thinking about:

1. Since it's aluminum I'm wondering if the consistency (?) will hold up; meaning, will the one screw bolted to the OEM shifter start to widen the drilled hole and loosen the shifter?

2. Would a steel shifter be more durable?

3. Angling my floorboards where they point more downward at the rear may be benefitial as I had to slightly adjust my seating position so I wouldn't accidentally step on the shifter with my heel.


I would want it powder-coated black but...personal preference!




The "old man" and his wrenches!!!




Bob taking my C for a test ride with the Heel-to-Toe shifter.

My thanks again to Dan (@DevilsFan) for his volunteering to do this for me. The production shifters will be black powder coated for sure. And yes, steel would be much stronger, but so much harder to produce (=expensive). So that's why we're testing this prototype.
 

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Hmmmm, heat treating might be worth looking into. Thanks!:)
Bob, check with your metal supplier and see if they have 6061 T-6 Aluminum alloy. Extremely tough, good tensile strength, corrosion resistant, and accepts coatings very well. we've used it to build a lot of critical components for race cars. It available in a wide selection of preformed shapes and extrusions. One advantage it has over steel, in the area where you'll be placing it, is that it doesn't rust. The folks in northern climates, where salt is used on the roads, or in coastal environments, should appreciate that. Google "6061 T-6" to learn more, and/or to find a supplier.
 

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Bob, check with your metal supplier and see if they have 6061 T-6 Aluminum alloy. Extremely tough, good tensile strength, corrosion resistant, and accepts coatings very well. we've used it to build a lot of critical components for race cars. It available in a wide selection of preformed shapes and extrusions. One advantage it has over steel, in the area where you'll be placing it, is that it doesn't rust. The folks in northern climates, where salt is used on the roads, or in coastal environments, should appreciate that. Google "6061 T-6" to learn more, and/or to find a supplier.
That is what we are using, in fact that is all he uses on the products he manufactures. I'm still going to ask about the heat treating that @Rebel13 suggested above.
 

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BTW - nice design! And, if DF angles the floorboards, it will place the toe closer to the original shift lever for easy downshifts. Honda should look at this design.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Just got back from a jaunt around Tampa and parts between.

The shifter is holding up well and I'm getting more and more used to (subliminally) using it. Yes, on the way home yesterday I would flip up on the front shifter. Today, I think I only did it once coming out of Bass Pro.

Gonna go out now and adjust the board's angle. I'll post back later this evening. But, again, so far...I really like having it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
OK, I angled the floorboards one notch leaning backwards. Took a ride up through town and cycled through all gears. 2 things:

1. I like this foot position better. I couldn't use this position before because I couldn't get my boot toe under the shifter peg without having to tiptoe a bit. Well, now that I don't "have to tiptoe" it feels really comfortable!

2. This floorboard position almost forces me to step back to up-shift, meaning step off the floorboard to shift. Prior, when my boards were more level, I was sliding my toe along the boards with my heel up. When I did that my foot was getting tired. It feels much better to step off, if that makes any sense!
 

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7071 is the aluminum equivalent of tool steel, I have a block of it in my garage waiting for me to get the tools to start working on it. I'm told it does not like being painted because it's heat treated or something.
 

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7071 is the aluminum equivalent of tool steel, I have a block of it in my garage waiting for me to get the tools to start working on it. I'm told it does not like being painted because it's heat treated or something.
You have to use an acid based etching primer. In military applications we use a 2 component Zinc Chromate. You will only find that at industrial paint supply stores. MIx the base with the acidic solvent and use within 24 hours. Sometimes it's cheaper to take it to an industrial spray shop and have them do it for you, than to buy the material (usually only available in gallons), and do it yourself.
 

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Can I have the info on what boards were used? Please email at
[email protected]
They are the large Kuryakyn floorboards discussed in some detail all over this forum. Just use the search to find out the details.
 

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Update on 6061

Bob, check with your metal supplier and see if they have 6061 T-6 Aluminum alloy. Extremely tough, good tensile strength, corrosion resistant, and accepts coatings very well. we've used it to build a lot of critical components for race cars. It available in a wide selection of preformed shapes and extrusions. One advantage it has over steel, in the area where you'll be placing it, is that it doesn't rust. The folks in northern climates, where salt is used on the roads, or in coastal environments, should appreciate that. Google "6061 T-6" to learn more, and/or to find a supplier.
My vendor basically has been shut down for a couple of weeks (kept getting voicemail), but I did confirm yesterday with one of the workers there that 6061 (aka "aircraft aluminum") is the only stock they use (and they use a ton of it!). However he didn't know about the T-6 heat treatment status. I'll find that out next week when everyone comes back from some big show in Vegas.
 

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Update on 6061
My vendor basically has been shut down for a couple of weeks (kept getting voicemail), but I did confirm yesterday with one of the workers there that 6061 (aka "aircraft aluminum") is the only stock they use (and they use a ton of it!). However he didn't know about the T-6 heat treatment status. I'll find that out next week when everyone comes back from some big show in Vegas.
I’m interested in installing a heel/toe shifter on my 2014 CTX 700. Do you or can you sell the necessary parts to me to install? I obviously would need instructions as well. Thanks
 

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I’m interested in installing a heel/toe shifter on my 2014 CTX 700. Do you or can you sell the necessary parts to me to install? I obviously would need instructions as well. Thanks
Firstly, As one of our Forum Moderators, let me welcome you from where I am in Florida, the land of 333 day riding seasons!! I would like to suggest to you, and all those who have not done it yet, that you put your city/state/region in your profile (at least your state/country, if non-USA).

To increase our enjoyment of your future posts, you really should put that location in your profile. Knowing where you are, even just in general terms, helps readers of your future posts to have a "context" to draw on. Since you are new to this forum and likely its software (the website "mechanics" all tend to be different!), here's how to edit your Profile for your location:

1) Click on the 3 vertical "settings" dots (they are in the far right of the forum banner at the top).
2) Highlight the "FAQ" entry & click.
3) Roll down to the 11th question, "Setting Your Location" and press <Enter>.
4) Read & follow the excellent instructions.

Note, since most smart phones are not smart enough to allow you to perform the above steps with their truncated screens, you'll likely have to do it using your PC.

Heel Shifters:

Okay, now to your question. It is true that I developed a heel shifter arm for the CTX's because I really, really wanted one for myself. As it turned out, the design only worked on those rides that already had foot boards. I had a few made up at the time (only 20 actually) to get the price down into an affordable range. They were nicely made being waterjet cut and powder coated. But even after selling at the blistering rate of a half dozen per year, they finally sold out this Spring. Sadly, it really is not worth it to lay out that much money to have them re-done.

Maybe one day in the future, I'll run out of things on my list and have time do a DIY write-up on how a handy person could make one themselves. But please, no breath-holding in the meantime. :rolleyes:
 

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I have found a great alternative to the heel-shifter dilemma. A company called "The Indie Crew" sell an adapter that mounts in place of the toe shifter. It is C-shaped where the toe of your boot fits between the two arms. When you shift down it is like normal, but when you want to shift up part of the bracket is already above your toe. See the photos I've included to better explain. It works great.
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