Review: New Fork Brace


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Austin, Texas
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Also available in silver, and available in silver or gold but without the shrouds. For 35mm forks.
⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐-1/2 stars out of 5
I believe this is a fairly new item. It's been referenced on the Forum once before, but no one has reviewed it.
What attracted me was the price. Delivered to my door for less than $46, including tax.
I didn't really need a fork brace. Was purchased more out of curiosity, and for probable use in a future project.

I didn't have an XS650 that I wanted to try it on, so I put it on my SR500. Turns out the SR500 and XS650 have exactly the same front axle and fender, and the rest of the front end is also pretty much identical or interchangeable.

The fit is excellent. Very well made.

Allows for use of the dust cover. You could also use gators.

With the dust covers AND the optional shrouds. If I had known the brace would accept the stock dust covers, I wouldn't have bought the version with the shrouds. However, the shrouds are well made, fit very well, and are good-looking.

The brace does NOT allow use of the stock fender.

By the way, I moved the speedometer cable outside the fork leg, to reduce the chance of it rubbing on the tire.
The brake line looks like it might rub on the tire, but the little bracket on the fork leg holds it away.

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The only reason I didn't give it the full 5 out of 5 stars was because of this deceptive pic in the eBay listing. It shows the fender fitting, but this isn't an XS650 or SR500.

Here's before and after. I am definitely a fender guy. I am currently sourcing a cheap fender that I can bolt to the bottom of the brace. It's going to take a while to arrive, but Stay Tuned...

One more thing before I sign off. Now that I know that SR500 and XS650 front ends are pretty much the same, it opens a whole new world of aftermarket options. Namely from KEDO (Australia), or their U.S. distributor, The Vintage Spoke.
A couple different KEDO braces. I don't think these will work with the stock fender either, but they will work the tire-hugging KEDO fender, or the similar low-profile fenders on eBay.
Look at that first KEDO pic. Now I need to source those cool minimal fork dust covers...
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I'm a firm believer in fork braces.
My XS came to me with one fitted and it was a loooooong time before that I rode a new one with the standard brace, so didn't really have any base to compare it to. Test riders back in the day didn't seem all that displeased with the standard brace inside the fender, though.
However, mine rides and steers well enough to not make me want to improve it, for now.

Having said all that, a few years ago I was rebuilding the front end of my GS850 and fitted a fender from the GS1100, which has a humungous steel internal brace. On top of that, I fitted a fork brace. Oh, I also installed a set of Wilber springs.
The result was out-fecking-standing. The bike goes where I point it, even though it's a heavy brute and has additional heavy / awkward bits and pieces tacked on.