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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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  #31  
Old 24 Mar 2012
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Reviving this thread, because its a question I'm currently struggling with. My choice is between a $260 Acerbis 5.3 gal (20L) tank and a $600 Safari 8 gallon (30L) tank - although reports are that it can fit 35L.

Bike is a Dr650 that seems to make about 53 mpg loaded, and the trip in mind is Africa West coast. Any further thoughts?
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  #32  
Old 24 Mar 2012
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Hi.

You dont need a big tank because they are to expensive. Just get some old canisters on the way if you know there will be a big gap without petrol (or you want to take free petrol from Venezuela to Brasil) and throw them away afterwards. Old canisters are available everywhere.

The biggest distance i had to cross doing the westcoast of africa was Mauretania where they did not sell any peotrol for about 500 km.

Travel save, Tobi
Riding the rough west coast through Africa part 3
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  #33  
Old 25 Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BugsOnMyBoard View Post
Reviving this thread, because its a question I'm currently struggling with. My choice is between a $260 Acerbis 5.3 gal (20L) tank and a $600 Safari 8 gallon (30L) tank - although reports are that it can fit 35L.

Bike is a Dr650 that seems to make about 53 mpg loaded, and the trip in mind is Africa West coast. Any further thoughts?
What's the standard tank size? How much are you investing per extra mile of range?

The Bonneville standard tank is 13/16 litres normal/reserve giving on average 160 miles before serious worry sets in. Not enough for Wales on a Sunday IMHO. My 9 litre auxilliary tank cost £80 in 2005. For an investment similar to your Acerbis offer I've added 36% to my range and so rarely muck about with jerry cans. Norman Hyde want £800 for a 22 litre tank (this is aimed at coffee in a multilayered 2 litre paper cup on a Sunday crowd, it's shiney to attract Bonneville OWNERS, so not a fair comparison) . Now if you are adding a lower percentage it's cans for cheapness or the Safari for convienience IMHO.

Andy
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  #34  
Old 26 Mar 2012
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My stock tank is 3.2 gallons. Aside from worrying about having enough range, I just get annoyed stopping for petrol so often.

Thanks for the advice ta- rider. I'm leaning towards the 20 L tank and doing just what you suggest on those long stretches to avoid the added bulk and cost of the safari super tanker.
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  #35  
Old 26 Mar 2012
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The one great benefit of carrying an extra 5 litres with you is you're not afraid of running on reserve until it runs out. It relieves the stress we've all had as soon as you turn that switch to RES. My Serow only has a 10 litre tank and will do about 140 miles before it hits reserve. Once on reserve I've got to 170 without actually running out. I would have been crapping myself if I didn't know that once it ran dry I wasn't walking. I use a slim marine container which sits behind my left pannier without compromising anything. I can even fill it up without taking it off the bike. It's a great option that gives me a true 250 mile range on my little 250. However, if they made a bigger tank I would get one in a heartbeat but still carry the extra 5 litres on a big trip.

Ocean Slim Tank - Fuel, Fuel Tanks | Mailspeed Marine

here is the container fitted behind my sw-motec rack






These look the best of the crop though...

Rotopax Fuel / Fluid Packs > Winding Roads Ltd
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  #36  
Old 26 Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BugsOnMyBoard View Post
Reviving this thread, because its a question I'm currently struggling with. My choice is between a $260 Acerbis 5.3 gal (20L) tank and a $600 Safari 8 gallon (30L) tank - although reports are that it can fit 35L.

Bike is a Dr650 that seems to make about 53 mpg loaded, and the trip in mind is Africa West coast. Any further thoughts?
Slightly awkward choice as I'd say 20L is not enough and 30L isn't necessary. I'd go for the 20L plus a rotopax or similar - certainly less expensive.
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  #37  
Old 26 Mar 2012
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I've now made my decision on fuel tanks. I have decided that, I'm not going to go looking for a bigger tank.

I am going to stick to the the 12 litre stock tank and carry the Ocean Slim line fuel tank giving me a range of around 200 miles or more. Where we're look at needing a bigger range, I'm going to mount 2 of these either side of my tank giving me a further 120 mile range. But when not needed they can rolled up in my luggage.

JAX Collapsible Utility Bladder (1 gallon) Just Gas Tanks.com
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  #38  
Old 26 Mar 2012
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Originally Posted by Flyingdoctor View Post
However, if they made a bigger tank I would get one in a heartbeat but still carry the extra 5 litres on a big trip.
Nice setup Flyingdoctor! Very slick. I think that Clark makes a tank for your bike, shown here: http://www.procycle.us/bikepages/xt225.html

I actually like the feeling of having a 'second reserve' as Flyingdoctor describes as well.
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  #39  
Old 26 Mar 2012
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Slightly awkward choice as I'd say 20L is not enough and 30L isn't necessary. I'd go for the 20L plus a rotopax or similar - certainly less expensive.
Exactly. The new Acerbis tank for the DR650 was supposed to be 25L rather than 20L which would have been perfect! And I can't be bothered to do the fabrication to fit the older model Acerbis to my 2007 DR.

Reports on ADVRider of even these dromedary bags working just fine for fuel for years. I imagine they would be fine especially if not used regularly.

http://www.rockcreek.com/msr/dromeda...m_campaign=msr
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  #40  
Old 26 Mar 2012
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Yeah its a shame the acerbis tank didnt end up at 25L, this would have been perfect IMO, im running the safari 30L on the DR650, it was expensive ($590/360 GBP) and a bit of overkill and I generally run it filled with around 25L.

However it did come in very handy in Argentina when there was a fuel strike on and gas availability was scarce in rural areas with long long line ups in the cities, if you are doing a western trans you can sometimes get this in Mauritania too with several day waits for fuel to arrive in Nouakchott. As Ted mentions, being able to fill up with a lot of gas in a country where its cheaper sure helps - for instance from Iran to Turkey.

Having the larger tank worked out as we were 2up and I didnt want to put extra gas cans on the rear of the bike, for solo id consider modding the older 25L tank to fit or do the 20L + Rotopax(s)

you might find that the acerbis 20L will increase in capacity by a litre or 2 if left full and in the sun (like the safari) and definitely go for a translucent tank - its very handy.
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  #41  
Old 27 Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fantastic Mister Fox View Post
Where we're look at needing a bigger range, I'm going to mount 2 of these either side of my tank giving me a further 120 mile range. But when not needed they can rolled up in my luggage
What about when you're unncertain about whether you need them or not?

I'll use the comparison of waterproof clothing that you wear over the top of your normal riding clothes. No matter how many times I got wet because I kept telling myself it's not really going to rain, i'm still reluctant to stop and put on the waterproofs unless it's really obviously about to piss it down. Getting waterproof clothing that is unobtrusive and comfortable helps loads, but I still resist sticking it on if I'm doubtful it will actually rain.

Running out of petrol 'in the middle of nowhere' is a far bigger deal than getting wet.


Steel petrol tanks are actually quite lightweight, are strong and crash well. Find someone who can weld thin steel well for money, then find an appropriately sized steel tank off a bike with similar tank geometry, and modify it to fit.
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  #42  
Old 27 Mar 2012
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thanks guys - these are all great perspectives!
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  #43  
Old 27 Mar 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nath View Post
.....

Steel petrol tanks are actually quite lightweight, are strong and crash well. Find someone who can weld thin steel well for money, then find an appropriately sized steel tank off a bike with similar tank geometry, and modify it to fit.
Make sure they really can weld if you go with a single volume. The advantage of an auxilliary tank is that when something breaks the fuel taps save part of the total. This may just involve less walking of course.

I talked to a shop in the NE of England about adding a section to the Bonneville tank. They were planning on using Petseal to make up for any pin holes in the welding. I didn't buy, I got a guy who makes lawn mower and grass track square section tanks to make me the auxilliary as he was 99.9% sure he was doing good welds into good metal. No gloop required.

Andy
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