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-   -   panniers with inbuilt water storage (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/equipping-bike-whats-best-gear/panniers-with-inbuilt-water-storage-42502)

chris reid 1 May 2009 10:31

panniers with inbuilt water storage
hello all, i am currently starting to prep my bike for a trip from alaska to argentina which will take place next year. and one thing iv been suprised with is that no one sells panniers with water storage inbuilt, so i am currently having a set of aloy panniers made with 3.5l of water storage in the bottom of each one, the main storage will be 32l each box.
does anyone know of any good reasons for why zega/metal mule etc are not doing this?

i plan on camping for this trip and when ever i go camping especially in hot conditions i am always short of water! so i figured these would sort that problem, and with water being heavy then the best place for it is as low as possible.

also the filler for the water tank will only be accesible by removing the lid of the pannier, so as to stop any one being able to put anything in the water when your not looking!!

also these panniers which will be extremley well made out of 2mm alloy will cost considerably less than the touratech etc equivilent.

i will post pics of them as soon as i have them.

would anyone be interested in panniers like this? if so then the more i have made the cheaper they would become.

cheers chris

Dick 1 May 2009 10:35

They do
Hepco and Becker plastic panniers are doubled skinned and the gap between the 2 skins is used as a water container that holds 3 or 4 litres. They sell taps and bits and bobs as extras for the panniers

The panniers came as standard with KTMs a couple of years ago and can still be bought I think

But you're right, I don't think any metal ones are made



MikeS 1 May 2009 16:20

I'm assuming you'd just be putting water to cook with in there as in hot countries, any water you carry outside on the bike just gets too warm to drink, though I can imagine what it would taste like after being in a metal pannier...and ask yourself what happens after your first little spill. My g/f had TT panniers which just split after her bike blew over in the wind. One of the best bits of kit we bought was a colapsable 12can beer cooler from a US supermarket for about $10 which folded flat when not in use.

I could fit a large 2L bottle of cold water in there along with other things we wanted kept cool and would stay cold for hours unlike putting them in my luggage. Makes a huge difference drinking cold water in swealtering heat!

chris reid 1 May 2009 19:09

hi mike, yes mainly it will be for cooking/washing. i use a camel back for drinking mainly.
also i think a big problem with panniers like touratech ones is the square edges, its a real small point of contact when you drop it, the ones im having made have an angled bottom edge and will be reinforced to stop it splitting. hopefully in a weeks time ill have some pics for you.... hopefully.

LukasM 11 May 2009 02:05

What exactly do you see as the advantage of a built in water tank?

In my experience - we had the Gobis on a KTM 990 - it's a very bad idea. Like Mike said, in the first spill there will be a crack. I wouldn't want to drink it either. Solid containers also use up a lot of space, even when empty.

I would say a much better bet is a water bag like the MSR dromedary. Folds up flat when empty, can be carried everywhere and will not break in a fall. It also holds more if you need it and the water can be drunk as well.

My €.02

Bertrand 11 May 2009 09:52

+1 for MSR dromedary I agree with Lukas
It adapts to whatever you put it in/on (like in a spare tyre well)
You can add a small right angle valve to the nozzle and connect a long hose to drink-on-the-ride. (hose from your local aquarium shop)
Advantage= soft, light, various sizes available (mine was a 10 litre one) and
Interestingly, I read a report that someone in the USA filled one with petrol and hung it in his garage for 3 months- no leaks- petrol was good to go-

chris reid 11 May 2009 11:54

surely if the pannier is going to split the very first time i drop it then what is the point of anyone buying zega or metal mule or any other alloy pannier as they would be no different?
if anything having the water storage in the bottom will just reinforce the bottom part of the box, and your only talking a 50-60mm deep area, so is not taking up any storage space.
i have no problem drinking out of metal containers, flasks, army canteen bottles etc are often made from alloy and the best you can do to wash them out is to swill them. plus as i said before it will mainly be used for cooking/cleaning etc as i have a camel back for drinking from whilst on the move. but i guess i will be using the water from the pannier to fill the camel back.

so there in my opinion is the advantage of having water storage inbuilt, its good capacity storage at the lowest point without having to carry bottles of it strapped to the bike..... personal opinion obviously.
cheers chris

Bertrand 11 May 2009 12:05

You may be overlooking the need to clean the container- and it sounds like the set up you suggest is going to make that almost impossible.

Simple solutions are usually the best - I followed someone's suggestion about the MSR Dromedary and never regretted it when i took it to Africa and crashed quite a few times and never a burst. I did come accross another rider who had come off and burst his camel back.
If you position it centrally on your seat- less stress on the pannier frames too. Easy to wash/fill/use and take in the tent/accom
The edges of the bag have eyelets- I simply used small aluminium clips that clipped on the straps holding the tyres to the bike.
It never came loose despite all the jarring caused by corrugations etc and my falls in sand:blushing:
Just my 2 pence!
Here is how I carry mine - In the 'hollow' of the spare tyre - I hope this offers another possibility /food for thought!

AntonD 11 May 2009 12:28

I'm just wondering where the tap is going to be. Sticking out the back? With a padlock on it to stop kids opening it up?

One thought is having the bottom section with a lockable flap opening to the rear. Then slide a bladder type water carrier into it. Then there is no need to make it water tight and if it's dropped and damaged the bladder will adjust its shape. Plus there is no problem about cleaning it.

chris reid 11 May 2009 12:49

no padlock planned on the tap..... i guess the worst that can happen is someone opening the tap and i will have to refill it...... same goes for a water bladder i guess?? i really dont see a problem in cleaning it, iv never had an issue with my camelback and i only ever swill that out.
'Bertrand', i like your set up, i think i will have a big roll bag where your tyre is though.

i guess the worst that can happen is that i burst the pannier in which case i will go back to more simple solution... but iv not heard of that many burst alloy panniers. time will tell, hopefully will have them by the end of the week so will post some pics

cheers for the thoughts and ideas


chris reid 22 May 2009 13:13


chris reid 22 May 2009 13:19

http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/881...iers003.th.jpg http://img20.imageshack.us/img20/289...iers006.th.jpg

chris reid 22 May 2009 13:25

well iv got them and they have a 32l luggage space plus the water storage, (not sure exactly how much water it will store as i have not measured that yet).
the brakets welded on the back are for the rack im making. which hopefully i will have pics of after the weekend.

i think the next set im having made will be 38l with no water tank, (they will be for a friend)

iv got a pipe inside the box to fill the tank and have a tap on the front, which no one can turn on and loose my water go as it has no head and can only be turned on by a radiator key on my keyring.

what do you guys think????

Honda CT90 Rider 22 May 2009 13:34

well it looks good..... and very well made.. :clap:..... but if you asking for opinions (and I think you are posting here!):thumbdown:

Too much engineering.......too much to go wrong.:nono:

water bladders are cheap....like $6 for a 2l camelbak type with drink tube off fleabay.....:thumbup1:

Id save my $$ for travelling..... but then I am a tight arse! :thumbup1::clap:I ride a CT90 that gets 100+mpg.......... which means fuel only wise even at 30,000 miles and at 85 mpg I can go RTW for $997.00:D

chris reid 22 May 2009 13:42

i am saving my £s. these cost considerably less that other well branded boxes! iv a camel back as well but they only hold 2l.

round the world on $997:clap::clap:

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