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Harley Davidson Dyna Sissy Bar Installation Guide

Harley Davidson Dyna Sissy Bar Installation Guide

Harley Dyna motorcycles are known for their powerful V-twin engines, stripped-down look, and classic styling. These performance-oriented cruisers can also be customized.

When it comes to adding custom Harley parts, Harley motorcycle owners prefer sissy bars due to their versatility and ease of installation.

The Harley Dyna sissy bar is a popular and affordable custom accessory that riders can use to improve their motorbike’s styling. Moreover, Dyna motorcycles with built-in passenger seats, like the Dyna Low Rider and the Dyna Fat Bob, can improve comfort for passengers by mounting a sissy bar and a backrest.

Installing a sissy bar is more or less the same for all Dyna motorcycles. This article provides a step-by-step installation guide to help you install Dyna sissy bars.

1. Types, Features, & Uses of Harley Dyna Sissy Bars

Just like other Harley Davidson sissy bars, Dyna sissy bars can come in different sizes, mount types, and finishes. Harley Dyna sissy bars may also feature additional features, including a luggage rack or a sissy bar pad.

1.1 Size

Dyna sissy bars are available in three sizes to cater to short, average, and tall passengers.

Tall Dyna Sissy Bars

Tall Dyna sissy bars are at least between 25’’-30’’ tall with either a straight or slightly curved design. If you want even taller sissy bars, you can order custom versions. Tall sissy bars for Dyna provide back support for tall riders and also increase the maximum storage space.

Medium & Short Dyna Sissy Bars

Medium and short sissy bars only function as backrests and are seldom used to carry large luggage bags. Short Dyna sissy bars can be between 8.5”-14” tall, while medium sissy bars can be between 15-24 inches tall.

Mounting Systems

Dyna sissy bars only come with two types of mounting systems: quick release and rigid mount.

Quick-Release Dyna Sissy Bars

Quick-release Dyna sissy bars come with docking hardware and a quick-release latch. These detachable sissy bars can be installed and removed quickly. The quick-release system is best suited for Dyna riders who prefer the stripped-down look and want to improve passenger comfort.

Rigid-Mount Dyna Sissy Bars

It usually takes the same amount of time to install a rigid-mount and quick-release sissy bars. However, the time it takes to remove these sissy bars differs. To remove rigid-mount Dyna sissy bars, you would have to unfasten the mounting hardware. Meanwhile, quick-disconnect sissy bars have docking hardware that stays in place.

Rigid-mount sissy bars are suitable for riders who frequently engage in two-up riding or want to customize the look of their rides.

Both quick-release and rigid-mount Dyna sissy bars must have four docking/mounting points on the fender strut to be installed.

1.2 Coating/Finish

Harley Dyna sissy bars are available in four distinct finishes:

  • Chrome Finish
  • Gloss Black Finish
  • Matte Black (Powder-Coated) Finish
  • Brushed Stainless Steel Finish

2. How to Install Rigid-Mount Sissy Bar on Harley Dyna Motorcycles

Before installing rigid-mount sissy bars on your Harley Dyna model, check for the locations of the turn signals and fender mounting bolts. If the fender strut has two fender mounting bolts and turn signals, then the installation process should be straightforward.

But if the turn signals are on the fender strut with only one fender mounting bolt, you will have to remove the turn signals and relocate them onto the license plate using a turn signal relocation kit.

2.1 Rigid-Mount Dyna Sissy Bar Installation - No Turn Signal

Rigid-Mount Dyna Sissy Bar Installation - No Turn Signal
Photo Credit: @Mattlaidlaw

Installing a sissy bar is essentially the same for all Dyna models. The only differences would be the number of fender mounting bolts and the location of the turn signals. When purchasing a rigid-mount Harley Dyna sissy bar, look for a cut-out feature on the side plates. This ensures the sissy bars perfectly fit around the turn signals and arranges the turn signal wiring without having to relocate the turn signals when installing the sissy bars.

Tools Required

  • Motorcycle Jack (optional)
  • Wrench
  • Included Mounting Hardware
  • Loctite
  • Torque Measuring Tool

Installation Steps

  1. Remove the front fender mounting bolts with a wrench. Due to most Harley Dynas having a low build and low clearance between the fender and tire, it can be difficult to catch the nut or bracket on the back of the bolt.
  2. To reach the hardware, lift your motorcycle with a jack or stand your motorcycle upright to move the rear tire out of the way. You can also remove the shock bolts to move the rear tire.
  3. Apply loctite to the two included front bolts For Harley Dyna sissy bars, the average front bolt size is 3/8”-16, while the average rear bolt size is 5/16”-18. However, the size may differ depending on a Dyna's model and year.
  4. Align the sissy bar with the fender hole and insert the two 3/8”-16 bolts through the sissy bar and fender holes, and lock it in place with a nut.
  5. With no turn signals in the way, insert the rear 5/16”-18 through the sissy bar and fender holes. Fasten the bolts to complete installation.
  6. Verify the torque of all the bolts. For 5/16”-18 bolts, the recommended threads per inch (TPI) torque is 18 lb-ft. For 3/8”-16 bolts, the recommended TPI should be between 16-18 lb-ft. For verification on the exact torque values, refer to the instruction manual.

2.2 Rigid-Mount Dyna Sissy Bar Installation - With Turn Signal Relocation

Tools Required

  • Wrench
  • Included Mounting Hardware
  • Loctite

Installation Steps

  1. Use a wrench to remove the front fender mounting bolts from both sides.
  2. Remove the turn signals by unfastening the bolt behind the fender with a wrench. For better access, lift your motorcycle up on a stand.
  3. Remove the turn signals, including the wiring inserted in the opening.
  4. With the turn signals out of the way, you can align the sissy bars with the fender holes. Insert the 3/8’’-16 bolts at the front and the 5/16”-18 bolts at the rear.
  5. You can buy a small turn signal bracket if you want to give your ride a cleaner look. Secure the front of the sissy bars, then mount the bracket using the sissy bar’s rear hole. Slide the 5/16”-18 bolt through the bracket, sissy bar and fender holes in that order.
  6. Lock the bolts and nuts to complete installation.
  7. For the turn signals, mount them onto the license plate using a turn signal relocation kit. If you find arranging the wiring too complicated, seek professional help.

3. How to Install Quick-Release Sissy Bars on Harley Dyna Motorcycles

Quick-release sissy bars are installed in a similar manner as rigid-mount sissy bars. However, instead of mounting hardware, you are supplied with docking hardware to create docking points for the quick-release latch system.

3.1 Single Docking Point on Fender Strut

Some Harley Dyna models have only one docking point on the fender strut, like the 2017 FXDB Dyna Street Bob. For this situation, the turn signals' original mounting position would be used as the second or rear docking point for the quick-release Dyna sissy bar.

Removing & Relocating Turn Signals

  1. Remove the front fender mounting bolt and replace it with front docking hardware included with the quick-release sissy bar.
  2. Unfasten the turn signal bolt on the inner side of the fender to remove the turn signal bracket and lights.
  3. Install the quick-release sissy bar’s rear docking hardware. Make sure to apply loctite on the front and rear bolts.
  4. With all four docking points installed, slide the quick-release sissy bar into place.
  5. Mount the turn signals onto the license plate using a turn signal relocation kit.

Mounting Turn Signals on Sissy Bar Docking Point

If you are not keen on using a turn signal relocation kit, mount the turn signals on the sissy bar docking points instead. But for this installation process, you will need longer bolts instead of the bolts provided.

Tools Required

  • Wrench
  • Torx Bit
  • Sissy Bar Docking Hardware
  • Two ⅜”-16 x 3-½’’ bolts


  1. Remove the front fender bolt.
  2. Remove the turn signals.
  3. Put the front docking hardware in place.
  4. Insert a ⅜”-16 x 3-½” bolt into the turn signal mounting bracket from the inner side of the fender.
  5. Slide the docking component on the bolt.
  6. Before the bolt is completely inserted, slide a spacer in place before re-installing the turn signals.
  7. Fasten the bolt from the inner side of the fender before installing the quick-release sissy bar over it.

Note: This installation guide can be used to install rigid-mount sissy bars on Harley Dyna motorcycles with a single fender mounting bolt and fender strut-mounted turn signals. Though this may require more work, you will not have to relocate the turn signals.

3.2 Two Docking Points on Fender Strut

For Harley Dyna models featuring two docking points on the fender strut, follow the following steps:

  1. Remove the mounting bolts from the fender strut. As you unfasten the bolts, make sure you catch the nuts.
  2. Apply medium-strength loctite threadlocker on the sissy bar bolts. Slide the bolt through the docking component and then the front holes find the fender strut. Remember the docking component for the front holes will be smaller than the rear docking component.
  3. After installing the front docking points on both sides, repeat these steps for the rear docking points.
  4. Remember to apply loctite to the bolts before inserting them into the rear docking component and rear fender holes.
  5. Once all the docking points are installed, slide the front latches of the quick-release dyna sissy bar onto the front docking points. Then slowly lower it over the rear docking points and insert it in place until it makes a clicking sound.

4. Takeaway

Installing Harley Dyna sissy bars is a straightforward process. If you follow the instructions provided in this guide, you should have no problem installing a new set of Harley Dyna sissy bars. The installation methods covered in this Dyna sissy bar installation guide are traditional and unconventional.

If you still are confused or unsure about a particular step, it is best to refer to the instruction manual or ask a mechanic to install the sissy bar for you.

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