How to Choose a Touring Windshield

_Ortiz Big Apple Motorcycle SchoolWith the upcoming Sisters’ Centennial Motorcycle Ride the opportunity came up to install a touring windscreen on my bike for the trip, which took off from Brooklyn, NY on July 4th. I’ve owned many bikes over the years and most of them have been “naked” with minimal or no windscreen, which was fine with me. I always wear a full-face helmet and liked the breeze, but lately I’ve been finding that at higher speeds the constant buffeting by the wind has become annoying and noisy. I switched to a better helmet hoping that would help, but it didn’t make much difference. Then on a recent long trip we encountered heavy rain the entire way and being hit by the rain and wind sealed the deal.  I went looking for a windscreen to give me a little more protection from the elements.

My requirements were for a windscreen that looked like it came with the bike, was easy to mount and wasn’t so tall that I had to look through it. Of course it had to be sturdy as well as functional. I chose the VStream+ Sport/Tour Windscreen Model number Z2474 by ZTechnik for my BMW F700GS. It’s not too short and I hoped it wouldn’t be too tall either!  The “V” shape of the windscreen and the way it wraps around the front of the bike was supposed to push the wind out and away from my helmet “resulting in a peaceful, quiet environment.” Just what the doctor ordered!

The windscreen came promptly and I was surprised that it was in three pieces with two stainless steel brackets. It also had lots of hardware!  After painstakingly matching up all the parts to the illustrations in the instruction manual I was ready to start the installation. Taking off the stock windscreen was easy.  It was a little difficult figuring out how the side deflectors fit with the main part of the windscreen and on the structural mounts, but once it was together it matched up with the front of the bike perfectly! The quality and workmanship of the screen is impressive and when it’s mounted the brackets are concealed, giving it a clean appearance. I mostly used a 3mm hex wrench and a 8mm closed box wrench. One thing I had to run out and get was a locktight-product for the screws, but that was the only thing I was missing. ZTechnik manufactures their own screens and mounting hardware and the specially-made fasteners keep all the plastic completely isolated from the bike’s body and paint work. Airflow is controlled by a reverse curl at the top edge of the deflectors. As with any project, Murphy came along to give us a little trouble with which parts to use where, but once it was all together it looked like a factory install!!

After it was all done, I took it for a ride. A QUIET ride!  It was just what I had hoped. It was just tall enough to deflect the airflow out and away from my helmet, but short enough that I didn’t have to look through it while riding. Success!

Here are some of the details of this windscreen:  height of this model is 16.75″ and the width is 15.50″ with a light grey, 26% tint. It has a 3-year warranty again breakage and is made in the USA by National Cycle (since 1937).

I still get to see and hear the wind, but now there is minimal to no buffeting even at higher speeds and I’m hoping it’ll keep some of the rain (and bugs) off too. I have to thank my husband, George, for his patience in helping me with this project as I’m not the handiest person. My smaller hands were definitely an advantage in getting behind the windscreen to secure some of the fasteners, and his expertise with a ratchet made the job go faster.  All in all a very pleasant afternoon with a very successful result!

Ride Safe!

Diane

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