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

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Old 31 Oct 2007
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berndtesch panniers

anyone got them and used them. Ive been doing alot of looking at various types for my africa twin 650 [racks the problem for most brands]. And was thinking of going for these as the reports i have seen seam to be all good and the price is comparible to metal mules.
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Old 1 Nov 2007
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I used them on my trip around Asia and am really convinced. Had a few bad falls and they are still waterproof. Met a guy on an Africa Twin who told me that he hit a rock at 50 kph. His box sure looked like that and it was supposedly still water proof.

Also, no hinges (take off the lids without unstrapping your soft bags) and they are not as wide as the handlebar, so I do not have to think about them when riding.

Only for me, 49l per box are too much. Its not only the space, somehow they are always full with unnecessary stuff. I heard Tesch is now offering 35l boxes. If that is the case, I would get them instead.

Also, I would really recommend building a quick release system. The boxes are very handy as chair/table, when the bike fell or got stuck or when doors are just a tiny bit too wide etc.

Here is how my quick release system looks like Quick-Release

The boxes got further modified (handles, padlocks, different bolts). Have a look at the pictures on my web site.

One more thing: Build your own rack. The tesch one is just too heavy hand and had to be bended (not easy!) to eventually mount it successfully.

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Old 1 Nov 2007
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If price is your main concern make your own or souce the boxes localy. There is a thread on here about making your own.
I am getting a local sheet metal company to make some bare alloy boxes, located the seals and catches on the internet and sourced some second hand frames and the total comes to £200 for a pair of alloy panniers and rack.

Alternativly buy some off the shelf, I think the metal mules are the best value for money, build, design and customer service.

I just don't want to spend the money as I am preping two bikes.

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Old 1 Nov 2007
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Thumbs up Tesch Boxes

I used Tesch boxes on my R100GS. 2 get-offs and the right box is buckled, but using 2 web straps to keep the lid closed, (mine are hinged), no water leaks.

The boxes and rack are circa 1995. Tough as old boots.
As another poster has said, get the smaller capacity boxes. Much better.

The rack is also bullet proof. The 2nd get-off was a crash with a pickup and the box he hit just has some grazes on it. The other box took the impact of an 80kph fall and has some serious marks and a distorted lid. The carrier has remained square but the bikes sub-frame is slightly out. Easy to fix.

Make your own QD system if you want. My travelling partner did but we NEVER took the boxes off!

Nostradamus Ate My Hamster
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Old 2 Nov 2007
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got a reply from the man himself hes currently heading for iran on another tour think the message came from turkey. Will look at getting the boxes made up first getting a frame for the 650 seams to be hard not many companies do them for the rd03 model.
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