Go Back   Horizons Unlimited - The HUBB > Technical, Bike forums > Equipping the Bike - what's the best gear?

Equipping the Bike - what's the best gear? Anything to do with the bikes equipment, saddlebags, etc. Questions on repairs and maintenance of the bike itself belong in the Brand Specific Tech Forums.
Contact Overland Solutions for all your custom modifications and setup for overland travel.

Giant Loop Motorcycle Saddlebags & Motorcycle Tank Bags: Panniers, Soft Luggage for Adventure & Sport Touring

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 30 Mar 2013
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 3
Another RTW DRZ Prep

Several years ago my wife and I decided to do a long trip. We have chosen to ride two DRZ 400s because of their versatility, simplicity and blendability. We have been picking away at the modifications and decided it was time to document the changes. My wife is 5'4", so our first task was to lower her bike. It was not a modification for the faint of heart because it meant chopping the frame in several places to achieve maximum lowering of the seat height. I calculated it out, drafted the parts on my CAD program, ordered aluminum and machined them. I sliced and diced the frame, welded the new pieces in and the subframe was lowered 1.5 inches.
A set of lowering links brought the frame down another inch plus. I sent the forks to Factory Connection to be dialed in for her weight including fuel, panniers, frame and gear. While there, they lowered the forks another inch. After all of these modifications, the bike is still very good travel but is about 4 inches lower allowing her toes to touch the ground. I will be adding more modifications as I go.
(Right now I am working on new panniers and their frames!)

Another RTW DRZ Prep-frame-one-modification-low-res.jpg Another RTW DRZ Prep-frame-two-modification-low-res.jpg Another RTW DRZ Prep-frame-three-modification-low-res.jpg

Darrin & Melissa
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 3 Apr 2013
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 3
Fabricating the Pannier Frame

The idea was to fabricate a “free-standing” pannier frame in the 10 – 12 pound range. The thought was to have the load of the boxes being carried by a lower cross member “shelf” of the pannier frame and to keep the rear sub-frame out of the mix as much as possible (and keep the weight around 10 pounds!) I chose chromoly tubing due to the high strength to weight ratio and that it can easily be welded with a simple oxy-acetylene system.


Another RTW DRZ Prep-frame-in-process-low-res.jpg
Tubes fish mouthed and cut to length.

Another RTW DRZ Prep-frame-complete-low-res.jpg
Completed stand alone frame weighing in at 11 pounds.

Another RTW DRZ Prep-frame-install-low-res.jpg
The complete frame drops into place on the bike.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 3 Apr 2013
Registered Users
New on the HUBB
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 3
Attaching the Pannier Frame to the Bike

I designed the frame to bring the force of the load down the lowest point on the bikes frame by designing a new swing arm bolt with attachment bosses. The swing arm bolt was sent for Birdsongs Black-T Teflon coating. Between the Teflon and the grease fittings for the rear swing arm the bolt should not freeze in place between maintenance.

Another RTW DRZ Prep-swing-arm-low-res.jpg

Another RTW DRZ Prep-lower-attach-low-res.jpg

The load was brought to the highest point on the main frame by clamping as shown in the photos.

Another RTW DRZ Prep-upper-attach-low-res.jpg

I added a center load point attachment as shown.

Another RTW DRZ Prep-mid-attach-low-res.jpg

This design worked well because I only had to drill one hole on each side of the frame to attach it. The rest is attached through the swing arm bolt and clamping to the upper part of the frame.

Another RTW DRZ Prep-frame-attached-low-res.jpg
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 15 May 2013
Steve Pickford's Avatar
Contributing Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Oxford, UK
Posts: 1,023
The rack look over complicated, one of the downsides of your design is that to work on the bike i.e. something simple like accessing the side mounted battery, you need to remove all of the luggage and the rack. I prepped a DRZ 3 years ago for a South America trip and made the racks in 3 parts (2 sides and a top) that bolted together, avoiding the need for full luggage removal.

One other point, your racks are quite large and mounted low down, I'd be concerned that on the lowered bike there's the possibility of the luggage and/or rack getting grounded when the bike's in a rut or similar.

Have you read this thread:
http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...age-rack-38462
__________________
My photos: www.possu.smugmug.com
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 15 Jun 2013
Gold Member
Veteran HUBBer
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Belgium/Canary Islands
Posts: 272
I share a bit of Steve's concerns, but it's your bike and your adventure, if you think this is the way to do it, then go for it!

I just bought an S subframe to put under my E model, then the original Suzuki side rack and then Magadan sofbags. Way "easier" than you r whole construction, but then I can't weld... ;-)

Please, do bear in mind that the less is better on a DRZ andtry to ride as much off road as you can with them as they are not nice bikes on tarmac...!

Currently EU to Mongolia and beyond on 2 DRZ400E...
__________________
Follow us on Facebook and on our website.
Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 Registered Users and/or Members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Siberia/Mongolia Road conditions July/August, lighter v. heavy bike, Transalp v. DRZ? chris Northern Asia 7 23 Jul 2013 12:46
DRZ vs TENERE vs GS... HELP PLS!!! Oo-SEB-oO Which Bike? 15 21 May 2013 10:04
Drz 400 will27 TRAVEL Bikes for Sale / Wanted 6 13 Apr 2013 20:40
DRZ 400 E service videos MuddySump Suzuki Tech 5 8 Apr 2013 19:14
For Sale - The Ultimate Overlanding DRZ :) djadams TRAVEL Bikes for Sale / Wanted 2 1 May 2012 21:37

 
 



Renedian Adventures

HU DVD Summer Special!

Now that summer is here, get On the Road! Take 30% off the Achievable Dream - On the Road! 2-DVD set until August 31 only. Get On the Road! Learn the tips to staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure!

Our veteran travellers share their tips (and great stories) for staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure.

"A fantastic, informative and inspirational DVD."

"It's brilliant - thank you very much!"

Check it out at the HU Store! Remember to use Coupon Code 'ONTHEROAD' on your order when you checkout.

What others say about HU...

"I just wanted to say thanks for doing this and sharing so much with the rest of us." Dave, USA

"Your website is a mecca of valuable information and the DVD series is informative, entertaining, and inspiring! The new look of the website is very impressive, updated and catchy. Thank you so very much!" Jennifer, Canada

"...Great site. Keep up the good work." Murray and Carmen, Australia

"We just finished a 7 month 22,000+ mile scouting trip from Alaska to the bottom of Chile and I can't tell you how many times we referred to your site for help. From how to adjust your valves, to where to stay in the back country of Peru. Horizons Unlimited was a key player in our success. Motorcycle enthusiasts from around the world are in debt to your services." Alaska Riders

contest pic

10th Annual HU Travellers Photo Contest is on now! This is an opportunity for YOU to show us your best photos and win prizes!

NEW! HU 2014 Adventure Travel T-shirts! are now available in several colors! Be the first kid on your block to have them! New lower prices on synths!

HU 2014 T-shirts now in!

Check out the new Gildan Performance cotton-feel t-shirt - 100% poly, feels like soft cotton!


What turns you on to motorcycle travel?


Global Rescue, WORLDwide evacuation services for EVERYONE

Global Rescue is the premier provider of medical, security and evacuation services worldwide and is the only company that will come to you, wherever you are, and evacuate you to your home hospital of choice. Additionally, Global Rescue places no restrictions on country of citizenship - all nationalities are eligible to sign-up!


New to Horizons Unlimited?

New to motorcycle travelling? New to the HU site? Confused? Too many options? It's really very simple - just 4 easy steps!

Horizons Unlimited was founded in 1997 by Grant and Susan Johnson following their journey around the world on a BMW R80 G/S motorcycle.

Susan and Grant Johnson Read more about Grant & Susan's story

Membership - help keep us going!

Horizons Unlimited is not a big multi-national company, just two people who love motorcycle travel and have grown what started as a hobby in 1997 into a full time job (usually 8-10 hours per day and 7 days a week) and a labour of love. To keep it going and a roof over our heads, we run events (22 this year!); we sell inspirational and informative DVDs; we have a few selected advertisers; and we make a small amount from memberships.

You don't have to be a Member to come to an HU meeting, access the website, the HUBB or to receive the e-zine. What you get for your membership contribution is our sincere gratitude, good karma and knowing that you're helping to keep the motorcycle travel dream alive. Contributing Members and Gold Members do get additional features on the HUBB. Here's a list of all the Member benefits on the HUBB.


Books & DVDs

amazon

All the best travel books and videos listed and often reviewed on HU's famous Books page. Check it out and get great travel books from all over the world.


Motorcycle Express for shipping and insurance!

Motorcycle Express

MC Air Shipping, (uncrated) USA / Canada / Europe and other areas. Be sure to say "Horizons Unlimited" to get your $25 discount on Shipping!
Insurance - see: For foreigners traveling in US and Canada and for Americans and Canadians traveling in other countries, then mail it to MC Express and get your HU $15 discount!




All times are GMT +1. The time now is 06:00.