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Camping Equipment and all Clothing Tents, sleeping bags, stoves etc. Riding clothing, boots, helmets, what to wear when not riding, etc.
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Old 22 Feb 2005
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Where to pack camping gear?


We are planning to be on the road for about 5/6 months during the summer, from BC to Costa Rica. Theres two of us on one bike, with 40 litre panniers on each side ( so one each i guess), so trying to fit everything we need into these is a mission and a half in the first place.

But what im really wondering, is the best place to pack all our camping gear, tent, sleeping bags, cooker etc?

Were riding a XTZ 750, but some advice given to us was not to try and pack a top box onto the bike for extra luggage space, it could just be too much. My main concern is security of just strapping things to the bike- if we pull into a town, have a walk arund, come back and find our little dome house and has been pinched off the bike and we have no portable kitchen anymore!!

Could someone give me some tips on the best places and ways to secure the bulky stuff like this?
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Old 22 Feb 2005
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Why not pack the tent etc in to a roll type sailors sack? That way it's easy to access without disturbing the pannier contents. Ortlieb make good but expensive versions. Hein Gericke make some cheaper versions as do Louis in Germany. Several styles available with either end or top opening.
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Old 23 Feb 2005
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Are your side panniers aluminum? My set up for two-up travelling is a dry bag on top of each pannier. One dry bag has the sleeping bags, one has the tent, sleeping pads and cook gear. We also have a top box, but try to keep it as empty as possible to take food and other things will will access frequently during the day. You can get something called "PacSafe" which will wrap around the bags and allow you to lock to the bike.

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Old 23 Feb 2005
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One day the tent will be wet - you will want the ability to pack it so it dries out without wetting anything else.

Security can be had by using those wire thingys that you should find in camping goods stores - they are designed to go over packs and bolt to a chair/post for security. They come in various sizes. Ahh davidmc has it answered.

The other things to consider is what you can loose along the way and readily replace - food, water and cloths are usually cheap and readily available - tents, sleeping bags, tools and parts and jackets tend to be expensive and hard to replace. Pack the expensive stuff in the most secure location/s, the cheap stuff should be the least secure.
Regards Frank Warner
motorcycles BMW R80 G/S 1981, BMW K11LT 1993, BMW K75 G/S
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Old 23 Feb 2005
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The "wire thingy" is a pacsafe. It's a wire mesh that is made to cover a backpack or luggage to prevent it from being stolen or slashed. I put my stuff in a dry bag, strap it to the rack and then put the pacsafe over it.
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Old 24 Feb 2005
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Hi,i would say to always carry all valuables between the two of you(in rucksacks) as it`s better to be safe than sorry.

if the opportunist thief IS lurking they aren`t so likely to take what they have no use for or what may be difficult to sell on,and of course strap,bungy and tie everything else on so as to make it alot of hassle to get at anything-and use a pacsafe and wire cycle locks

safe and pleasant journey and a safe and pleasant return

may all beings have a safe and pleasant journey and a safe and pleasant return:OmaniPemeHum
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Old 1 Mar 2005
MCP MCP is offline
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Location: Dominican Republic
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There are a ton of ways to pack, it really boils down to what you can live with or without.

Longest trip to date 4 months, so there are many here that have much longer trip experiences.

What has worked for us, 2 up, Helen Two Wheel Bag on each side case, and each bag holds a thermarest, tent, and sleeping bag, and the other is the same but holds the fly to the tent.

The rear trunk is pretty much dedicated to camping equip, and we have stove, fuel, pots, fry pan, coffee maker, cutting board, you get the idea. We are self contained.

Also have a tank bag.

You still have bags exposed to theft. I also carry a light wt cover (Parachute material) and when we stop we can throw the cover on.

On thing I've considered is purchasing a couple external brackets that mount on the back of the cases and these are good for holding 1 litre of gas or water. See Tourtech for these.

Good luck - pack light.
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Old 1 Mar 2005
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As you say - have a box each, - this contains clothes, sleeping bag and thermarest - everything - In my box I also carry tools and spares ! I would have a top box - either a Givi type or a Peli Case locked or secured to the bike - I have a Peli case attatched to rack permanantley- like the guys say for the daily essentials -food, water, stove, guide books etc for easy access.

Yes the Ortlieb dry bags are best for a tent, just bungee or strap to top of box or pannier.

For Security use a waterproof cover over the bike - this is a good detterent - a nice dark unobtrusive colour and people dont give it a second glance. Use a lock and covered chain to secure your helmets to bike.

All through CA there are kids who will watch your bike for a little money or a soda while you go off site seeing - use them - generally if you are out of town there is not much problem with theft - if you are staying in towns then find somewhere with a courtyard to ride the bike into or make sure you park in the Zocolo's - as public place as you can - dont park on quiet backroads.

If theres not enough room for all your gear leave some clothes behind, you shouldn't need much over the summer - you can always pick up some t -shirts on route !!!

Use very lightweight sleeping bags and Prolite Thermarests for where you are going - Though in the Central American highlands it can get pretty chilly at night - nearly freezing !!! especially Mexico & Guatamala - so have one warm item to wear !

Finally - If someonwe really wants to steal something they will - do your best, be careful with security and dont travel at night through CA - Its a great place to travel by bike, Don't Worry - Enjoy it !!

Ex RAF Regt, Ex Dragoman, LRE Instructor,
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