So I love the look and the clean install of the DL650 specific handguards from Suzuki, but like many I was a bit concerned about ruggedness of the all plastic design. So here's a simple mod that (I hope) will add enough beefiness to the guards to protect clutch/brake arms from busting off if the bike decides to throw itself to the dirt.
I bought a 3 ft piece of 1"x1/8" aluminum flatbar for a couple bucks at local hardware store. I used a hammer and an anvil-like-surface (similar to my rock hard abs
) to pound it into the desired shape. I then drilled a couple small holes and put a couple small bolts through (with locktite) to keep the pieces together. Drilled larger hole near end for bar end bolt to go through. Removed bar ends, slipped on the flatbar, replace bar ends and tightened down. Done.
I considered putting the flatbar on the outside of the handguards, but didn't because I liked the clean look of it being on the inside. I suppose its debatable as to whether it will be as effective on the inside, but my main goal isn't to protect the handguards, its to protect the clutch arm from breaking and leaving my stranded somewhere.
The reason I used to pieces of 1/8" thick rather than a single 1/4" is that its a heck of a lot easier to bend 1/8" thick material. I also fully expect the flatbar to bend a bit when hit hard, but I think this is desirable - it helps absorb any impact. Frequently people over-engineer things so they never bend - but that just means that something else will probably end up breaking - perhaps something more expensive.