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I brought my new Street 500 home from the dealer with visions of slip ons and naked intakes dancing in my head, not realizing that my recent move to California may have made that more difficult than it looks at first glance.

How can I get a HP bump and still stay CA street legal? And how does it work out in practice to ride with non-street legal kit out here? I really want to bump up my sound and my HP -- and am really not impressed with the Nightstick -- but I'm at a loss for what my options really are.
 

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Keep the stock parts around. As I understand it, in the rare chance you get stopped and the cop cites you for it, you just have to put the stock stuff back, go get it inspected. And then you can go home and put the goodies back on. Might be my rebellious reading of the rules. ;)
 

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someone said on this forum a while back that they dont check motorcycles as much as they do cars out there
 

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and am really not impressed with the Nightstick -- but I'm at a loss for what my options really are.
What's wrong with the Nightstick? It's made by SuperTrapp, they're a well-known exhaust maker who's been making 'em for decades. And, as you likely already know, it's legal in CA, where most mods (like the K&N or V&H air intake kits) aren't.

I'd ask at your local dealer. Now, granted, they're almost certainly going to try to sell you whatever they have in stock, but -- it seems reasonable to me that they've likely faced these questions before, probably many times before, and they know what's legal and what isn't.

From what I've looked into, the Nightstick and Screamin' Eagle intake are 50-state legal, and even the SE ProTuner can be configured to maximize the tune to whatever's allowed under California law.

For V&H, they have a specific website set up to address what's legal in California among their product offerings, Vance & Hines California Products Guide. I can't figure from there whether they're saying it's legal or not. I mean, it says "no exhaust systems qualify for CARB replacement parts," but then it does bring up the Competion Series slip-on, but then on the product page it flatly says in a big red box "FOR CLOSED COURSE COMPETITION USE ONLY. NOT INTENDED FOR STREET USE." So -- I'd say you'd have to call 'em and ask 'em. I'm pretty sure their VO2 is not legal in California for street use; it doesn't show up in their California products website at all.

For K&N, the AirCharger 63-1130 is definitely not legal in California. The HD-4915 replacement filter may be legal; it appears to be sold under Harley's own brand as well and there's no indication on either K&N's or Harley's site that it would be illegal in California.
 
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