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Luggage Options

Discussion in 'Riding Gear and Bike Accessories/Parts' started by jisk, Apr 24, 2009.

  1. Hey,

    I have a DriRider tank bag which is pretty convenient but gets in the way while riding. Not seriously in the way, just more in my head. I feel less engaged with the machine.

    I've seen bike specific backpacks, and other luggage options, usually strapped to the back of the bike.

    For anyone with a backpack - how do you find it? Is it comfortable for multiple hour rides? Why did you go with a bike-specific backpack rather than a normal one?

    And for the rear-luggage options (I'm not really keen on saddlebags) - does it interfere with lane splitting or cause noticeable aerodynamic drag?

    Any recommendations for luggage options other than a tank bag?

  2. I use a backpack - one that I wear on my back, not the rack+backpack system. So I am biased.

    With a backpack b/c your back is carrying the load it depends alot on what you are carrying, how heavy when it's loaded and the kind of road you are travelling on. The length of your journey vs feeling comfortable is proportionally inverse to the other conditions.

    Go for a low profile backpack for less drag, low profile also gives you better center of gravity, look for features in addition to just carrying 'stuff', does it offer enough padding, is it poorly designed...does it offer protection to you.

    I didn't like the bulk those backpack+rack systems, that you gotta install the rack + those backpacks are overly sized for my daily commuting needs. They do allow you to carry more + heavier stuff tho, as the bike is taking the load...which in terms affects your handling.
  3. just what ive done...

    used to commute to n from school. usually id tie my bag down (which had a laptop in it) which was... 5-10kg usually i spose, on the back, didnt notice much difference (cept the one time it fell off... ), but usually tied on the back.

    tank bags ive used a bit. mostly just small things obviously, change of clothes, whatever, and any extra in the backpack. ive used small backpacks which have been fine, most ive would have been my school bag though :p ive also used camelbacks, but thats mostly for water, not luggage :p

    cheers, hope i helped (somewhat) :LOL:
  4. Started out wearing a backpack (not a bike-specific one, couldn't justify $200ish for another bag) and hated it. The one I had interfered with the back of my helmet, which didn't help, but I also hated the weight on me, and felt restricted in my shoulders.

    I now have a rack on the back of the GSXR - Ventura one is relatively low profile and visiually subtle (I still remove it when I can!) only 4 bolts to remove it completely and is much less imposing mentally when I'm riding. It does make a bit of difference to handling, but nothing much to worry about. They are expensive new, but I found a good one used and a used bag (on NR classies) for about 1/2 the new price.

    I use a small tankbag when not carrying much, which I love because I can lean on it and take the weight off my arms and the strain off my back for the daily freeway drone.
  5. i use a back pack just a normal one as DarkHorse said i cant justify spending that much on another one that does the same thing and i gotta say im not to keen on it find if i have a bit of weight in it and im riding for more than half an hour i get a sore back and it does restrict movement in the sholders a little.
    The only reason i still use it is because i cant find a gear rack to fit my bike (FZR250 2KR so if anyone knows please let me know) that dont look too cool but im sure their better than a bike pack.
  6. Hmm, I may just have to persevere with the tank bag. It is bloody big, though. I tried a backpack one time and it wasn't fun, but it was just a normal one.

    Anyone that has used a bike specific backpack want to chime in?
  7. Topboxes and bags on a rear Ventura rack don't interfere with lanesplitting/filtering, in my experience. Your handlebars are pretty much guaranteed to be wider than even the biggest bag/box options. :)

    Even on the VTR250 I didn't notice any difference in aerodynamics with the huuuuuuuuuuuge Ventura touring bag. With the rack rotated 180 degrees to place the bag above the pillion seat, the bag itself is inside the wake coming off of your body. If anything, in that configuration it might even improve aerodynamics by a tiny amount. :cool:

    One thing to be mindful of is that adding too much weight behind the C/G of the bike (or even worse, behind the rear axle) will change the bike's handling a little. It's no biggie, just don't carry 20kg bags of cement on your tailrack, and consider rear preload if you're carrying heaps of crap. ;)
  8. Ventura rack is perhaps a bit expensive but very easy on and off unloading.. I used to commute 2 hours each day with one with my heavy arse laptop, change of clothes etc.

    You might want to give the saddle bags a go though: most don't interfere with your filtering width (only as wide as your legs or handlebars anyhow).

    I'd avoid any sort of backpack for multi-hour rides. There's enough fatigue as it is without adding to the problem.
  9. I use a back pack everyday to and from work and on weekends a smaller one . It does effect balance though especially when full of books, lunch and a laptop, lol, you get used to it though. Would be nice with luggage but $$ makes $60 kmart backpack a lot more appealing. I have day rides with backpack, stopping here and there without drama

    Used to have saddlebags on the cruiser, they dont really stick out much and you dont even notice they are there. I do remember worroying about them getting nicked off the bike as it gets boring taking them off / on all the time.
  10. I bought a Backpack with a 3 litre water storage unit in it. It's an
    El Borracho and holds up to 22litres of luggage aswell. I find it really comfortable and not heavy on my shoulders. As long as you tighten the straps it shouldn't affect your riding position or fatigue you in any way.
    I'm also going to buy a Ventura Rack bag and frame, so when I go on longer rides I can have all the essentials in the back pack and the rest in the rack bag.
  11. I used to use a backpack, but my shoulders would ache and I would sweat in traffic. Also it affected my handling and made everything feel heavier (big backpack). It interfered with my riding.

    I now use a ventura rack, with a very large expandable rjays explorer bag on the rack (over the pillion seat). Works brilliantly. It doesn't affect the handling. I've attached a lock, so I can chuck my jacket, helmet and boots in there when I go somewhere.

    Fuel economy with the rack bag is ~4.3L/100km @120km/h. i.e. it makes little or no difference. Which is surprising, considering the size of the bag.

    If a rear rack is available for your bike, get it. Official ventura racks can be very expensive (~$400), I got mine 2nd hand.
  12. I use a backpack for riding to work and it's fcuking horrible, I have a ventura tail bag for overnighters and day trips (my laptop wont fit in the tailbag :().

    I can't bring myself to put a rack on my bike, so ugly. Recently I have been looking at a hard top box for the back. Buying a s/hand pillion seat and bolting the box to it, so nothing permanent and easy take off.