Honda CBR 1000RR Vortex Rear Sets

March 2006

I didn't really have a problem with the stock rear sets on the 1000RR, but I came across a smoking deal on a set of Vortex rear sets and decided I'd give them a try just to see what I was missing.  One thing I noticed right away is the foot placement felt much more solid.  Also these add a little protection over stock rear sets as the foot peg doesn't fold up.  Also, just about every part of the Vortex rear set is replaceable one piece at a time which could come in handy.  I weighed the stock and Vortex rear sets to see how comparable they were in terms of weight.  Even though the Vortex rear sets feel much more substantial, they are nearly the same weight as stock.

Stock Right Rear Set.....1.075 lbs
Stock Left Rear Set........1.219 lbs

Vortex Right Rear Set....1.163 lbs
Vortex Left Rear Set.......1.531 lbs

Installing the Vortex rear sets is a pretty straight forward job.  I started on the right side, and disconnected the brake light switch spring and brake light switch.  Remove the exhaust heat shield cover.  Then remove the cotter pin 12mm bolt, and 5mm button head hex bolt that hold the brake lever to the master cylinder.  Be aware of the washers on the bolt going to the brake lever.  Next I removed the 5mm hex bolts that hold the heel guard and master cylinder in place and set the master cylinder on top of the rear hugger out of the way.  Finally, remove the two 8mm hex bolts that attach the stock rear sets to the frame.

Using the stock 8mm hex bolts attach the Vortex rear set base to the frame.  Torque these 8mm hex bolts to 27 ft/lbs (37 Nm).  I recommend using some blue thread lock on these bolt threads.  Blue thread lock is meant to prevent the bolts from vibrating loose but still allow you to remove them at a later date should you need to do so.  Red thread lock is much stronger and harder to brake free.  I do not recommend using red thread lock on these bolts.  Next use the stock rear set as a guide and mount the Vortex foot peg to the base using the 6mm bolts provided.  Don't crank these down too tight or apply thread lock just yet as you'll want to mount the left side and get the foot pegs set to your desired riding position.

Next, move to the left side.  Remove the 8mm gear shift pivot bolt  and washers and remove the stock gear shifter from the bike.  Next unscrew it from the eye bolt that connects it to the shift linkage.  Then remove the two 8mm hex bolts that hold the stock left rear set to the bike and remove the stock rear set.  Bolt the Vortex base to the frame using the stock 8mm hex bolts and torque them to 27 ft/lbs (37 Nm).  Again, use blue thread lock on these bolt threads.  Using the stock rear set as a guide mount the Vortex foot peg to the base using the supplied 6mm hex bolts.  Don't tighten them down just yet as you need to sit on the bike to determine where you want the foot pegs positioned. 

The left side Vortex rear set is a little harder to get setup than the right side due to the shifter.  You'll need to install the Vortex shift bracket to the bike using the stock 8mm pivot bolt and torque this bolt to 20 ft/lbs (26 Nm).  Next you'll need to decide if you want to have GP shift, meaning pressing down on the shifter increases a gear rather than decreasing, or standard shift.  The upper hole in the shift lever bracket is for normal shifting, the lower hole is for GP.  The benefit to GP shifting is that it allows you to click the next higher gear while leaned deep into a turn without having to worry about your foot dragging the ground and is very handy on the track, however since I ride on the street I set mine to standard shifting.  It's only a single 4mm hex bolt to make the change so you could actually carry a 4mm hex t-handle in your pocket and try both while out on a ride.

Once you've determined which shift style you're going to use, attach the Vortex shift linkage rod to the Vortex shift bracket and use blue thread lock on this 4mm hex bolt.  Next attach the Vortex shift linkage to the Vortex shifter using the supplied nut and some blue thread lock.  Finally, attach the stock shift linkage to the Vortex shift bracket with a 4mm hex bolt and some blue thread lock.  You can adjust the angle of the shift lever by turning the stock shift linkage, the Vortex shift linkage, or a combination of both.  Once you have everything set where you want, tighten down the lock nuts on the stock and Vortex shift linkages.  Go back and put thread lock on the 6mm Vortex foot peg mounting bolts and tighten them "good and tight", Vortex's words not mine, as they don't specify a torque value.  Attach the rear brake master cylinder to the vortex heel guard using the stock 5mm hex bolts and torque to 7 ft/lbs (9.8 Nm) and use some blue thread lock on the threads.  Finally, attach the Vortex brake pedal to the master cylinder using the stock 12mm bolt, 5mm button head hex bolt, washers and a new cotter pin and use thread lock on the 5mm hex bolt threads.

That's basically all there is to the installation.  However there are two last things you have to consider.  One, the Vortex rear sets do not utilize the stock rear brake light switch.  You can either go without it, or purchase a pressure activated switch that replaces the banjo bolt that attaches your brake line to the master cylinder and connect this to the stock brake light switch wiring.  It's a simple fix, you just have to decide if you want the rear brake light to activate when you depress the Vortex brake pedal.  The rear brake light will still function normally when the front brake is applied regardless of what you do with the rear brake light switch at the pedal.  The other thing you have to consider is re-installing the exhaust heat shield cover.  The Vortex rear sets come with a small aluminum piece that can be easily modified to allow you to attach the exhaust heat shield cover.  All you have to do is dremel the oval hole out a small amount and attach it to the back side of the Vortex rear set using a m-8 1.25x16 stainless steel button head hex bolt.  I did this in about 10 minutes using a dremel tool with a cutting attachment.

The shifting is smooth and the foot pegs give nice firm feed back.  The grip on these foot pegs is great as well.  As I haven't started doing track days, I don't know that I'd have gotten them had I had to pay full retail, but again I got a smoking deal and am very happy with these rearsets.  For a bike that sees any track time I'd say they're a necessity.


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