Just In Time For The 75th Sturgis Rally. Ape Hangers Legal In South Dakota.

1apeStarting July 1st, ape-hangers are now legal in South Dakota.

The $20 fine for riding with your hands too high was wiped off the books as governor Dennis Daugaard signed Senate Bill 85, effectively abolishing South Dakota codified law that prohibited such handlebars.

Until now it was a petty offense in South Dakota if you rode motorcycle on a public street or highway with the handlebar grips positioned at or above shoulder height. Starting July 1st, no more regulations on where to hang your hands. Ride high, ride free.

19 Responses to “Just In Time For The 75th Sturgis Rally. Ape Hangers Legal In South Dakota.”

  1. 1 X-HD BRIDER Jun 25th, 2015 at 11:23 am

    It would be nice to find a list of all the laws in Sturgis.
    Been going there for years and never new ape hangers were illegal. What ells is illegal

  2. 2 nicker Jun 25th, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    Certainly, laws intended to codify common sense are about as useful as tits on a boar.

    And just so, outlawing ape-hangers is about as useful as a law requiring you to wipe your but before pulling up you under ware.


  3. 3 Mike Jun 25th, 2015 at 12:43 pm

    about time….

  4. 4 TJ Martin Jun 25th, 2015 at 1:12 pm

    Gee … what a worthwhile use of SD’s Senate’s time and energy . Ending a law that slapped a minor fine on you for being foolish enough to ride with ape hangers endangering yourself and everyone around you . Yeah .. thats about time alright . About time we let the style conscious rubes that use them to crash and burn at their will … albeit at our expense ?

    And of course nothing else on SD’s agenda could possibly of been more important than making a few ‘ fashionista ‘ bikers that show up once a year happy . Cause thats all Ape Hangers are and have ever been . Fashion statements !

    Ugh . So much politically on everyone’s plates and all we get handed to us is a Pacifier while our Daily Bread is being ripped right out of our hands . Brilliant .

  5. 5 so you know Jun 25th, 2015 at 2:52 pm

    TJM aka Terence Tony, I guess we can add Communist to you also besides being a major A-hole

  6. 6 richards Jun 25th, 2015 at 4:30 pm

    so you know….I think you mean …terrence TORY???? At least that’s who tjm sounds like to me. Anyone know for sure?

  7. 7 so you know Jun 25th, 2015 at 5:29 pm

    My bad, that’s exactly the Negative Nancy I meant. You never see them at a m/c show together, one in the same lol

  8. 8 calif phil Jun 25th, 2015 at 5:45 pm

    ABATE of KS helped get rid of that stupid law in KS.

    I am never surprised at what comes out of TJM’s keyboard. Ughh

  9. 9 zyon Jun 25th, 2015 at 11:23 pm


    Clearly you have NEVER ridden a bike with apes. I ride a Deluxe with 16″ apes with the OEM risers. That puts my grips over 21″ from the triple tree with my hands at jaw height. Last week I rode from Eastern PA down to Rockingham for the Smokeout and then I rode west to ride the Smokey Mts. I accumulated over 2000 miles on that trip. I rode the Tail of the Dragon in approximately 20 minutes. I rode the Cherohala Skyway and I rode over 100 miles of the western end of the Blueridge parkway. When I got off the Parkway I rode a few roads that made the Dragon look tame. Not only did I do this two-up, I did it with a trailer hooked to the back of the bike. (minus the skyway and dragon.) I have almost 20K on my current bike with about 19,500 miles on that bike alone using apes. I’ve ridden every inch of the Pocono Mts and just about all of the Allegany mts.

    I’d put the ability of my bike and it’s ability to carve the curves against any non crotch rocket you care to throw a leg over. So, before you trot out your preconceived notions, educate yourself by putting a few miles on the type of bike you feel like bashing. You rarely offer any of your experience or prove your expertize in the subjects you bloveate about.

    I’ll dispel a few other myths while I’m at it. No, my hands don’t go numb any faster than on any other bike I’ve owned without apes. No, they arent harder to corner than anyother bike. No, I dont do it for the cool factor. I have degenerative disc disease and three of my discs are pretty bad. The apes force my back into a better position and keep me riding all day long. The stock beach bars killed my back in a matter of 20 minutes. Therefore, (in my case, and for many others I know) there is more medical evidence that apes are helpful and not harmful. This is why States are dropping the handlebar laws left and right.

    Now, please submit a list of things to each state and to the federal government that are important to you so they can focus only on the things you deem important. Obviously, if it doesn’t meet your standards, everyone should ignore it. In my opinion, it’s about time States start eliminating the antiquated anti- 1%er laws that have been on the books since the 60’s.

  10. 10 Joe Lomanaco Jun 26th, 2015 at 12:32 am


    Amazing how you can tell the real M/C enthusiasts like yourself vs the keyboard commandos like TJ.
    I believe the only seat under his ass is his Big Wheel, and he could never come close to you achievements in life and your riding experience.

  11. 11 James just another Crazy Kiwi Jun 26th, 2015 at 3:34 am

    TJ is called two joints Cause you could never get that stupid only smoking one

    Had a number of bikes with high bars, British and American , as long as they were below shoulder height they were comfortable and I had no control issues…..but real people know that

  12. 12 RUB Jun 26th, 2015 at 7:10 am

    I don’t care what kind of bars you have , ride safe and get home alive ……………..

  13. 13 BCinSoCal Jun 26th, 2015 at 10:18 am

    I got my handlebar ticket about 20 years ago in Bolder Canyon running 16″ apes on my knucklehead chopper. Now with the law gone, every doo rag wearing poser will have the bars as high as possible and still be able to reach them . Just watch this year, bet you’ll find it true….

  14. 14 Bygtime Jun 26th, 2015 at 5:08 pm

    So know it’s gonna be a loud pipe ticket….they gotta keep the revenue coming in to the PD somehow.

  15. 15 Woody's Jun 27th, 2015 at 9:33 am

    I don’t see folks running out to swap bars, wiring and cables because of this ruling, only an end to arbitrary enforcement of a former law that was silly to begin with.

  16. 16 zyon Jun 27th, 2015 at 10:51 am


    When I did my 16″ bars I thought, oh, $120 bucks for a set of bars, that’s not bad. Throw in wiring, new clutch cable, brake cable, Clutch side transmission gasket, exhaust gaskets, fluids, urethane bushings, upgraded grips and mirrors and the shop manual and I was about $700 into it. Plus, about 9 hours of work fishing the wires through the bars, soldering the splices, removing the tank and exhaust to get to everything. out of curiosity, I asked my dealer. At 75 bucks (or more depending on time of year) an hour, they wanted 8 hours to do the job. As I said, I did it in 9 on my own. Swapping to bars over 12″ inches high can get expensive and time consuming. Usually, you can swap to mini apes, keep the wiring on the outside and have enough wire and cable to make it work.

    I agree with you, most guys with apes at the rally already had them and were willing to pay a few $20 fines. Every time I leave the state of Pa I prepare myself for some level of harassment for my bars. So far, I’ve not had any but I’m waiting. Then again, I don;t act like an idiot, blipping my throttle at every stop light trying to draw unwanted attention my way.

  17. 17 Woody's Jun 29th, 2015 at 6:37 pm

    @zyon, ‘zactly 😉

  18. 18 Ben Jun 29th, 2015 at 10:44 pm

    The dragons tail, 20 minute pass on a deluxe w/apes? That would be impressive!

  19. 19 nicker Jul 2nd, 2015 at 9:41 pm


    Seems he’s pissing on our boots while trying to convince us its actually raining.


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Cyril Huze