Saddling up an XR for travel: options
I know that this sort of thing has been discussed before, but I'd like any opinions people are willing to give on the subject. I have two bikes. The Ural sidecar is one: for overlanding with the rest of the pack (My other half and our dog). Then I have my little Honda XR.
In the case of the XR, I have a decent headlight on it now and a 22L tank so overlanding is possible. The biggest issue for the XR is its weak subframe: Its not designed to take weight other than the rider's, but luckliy I am not a behemoth: about 85KG, fully kitted.
However, luggage is a problem... I need to carry a tent or a basic bivvy and tarp, mat, sleeping bag, stove and cooking stuff, a small selection of tools, any spare clothes and perhaps one or two other bits and bobs.
My options, making a small bracket to bolt my old Givi E45 topbox on there, or go for throw-overs, specifically some bicycle luggage like this:
The advantage of the topbox is toughness and security and that I have it already (I'll flog it if I don't use it). The downside is that its heavy and I still would need another rollbag as well, probably balanced precariously ontop!!
The advantage of these panniers is that they are light, keep the weight further down and I could also use thm on my push-bike, too. The downside is that they are more fragile, and fo course less secure. I would still need to put the tent across the top as its too wide and I have to buy it, but at least no brackets are needed, bar a heat shield for the exhaust.
What do you think?
If it help's I have done some trip's on a XR400.
You can see in the photo that I have carried a fare bit of weight on the bike.
Alloy top box..a pair of tyre's...throw over panniers
tent and 5lt of water,,,,plus me who is a tad on the Fat side :innocent:
The sub frame has held up well so far :thumbup1:
Looks good and the tooltube is also somehting I'm thinking of getting.
On a huge tangent, how do you find the oil change schedule on the XR: is it restrictive?
I change the oil every 1000 mile's .
With a bit of care in prepping it I think you'll find that your XR subframe can take more weight than you think. On my 600 I rewelded the "eye" at the end that supports the mudguard as it was only fixed on by a couple of spot welds and arranged a couple of steel "arms" to fix to this and to the silencer mount bolt. This was then triangulated with another arm down to the footrest area.
The whole thing was never completely rigid but it never broke (or gave me any trouble at all) despite being really overloaded at times
Well, I thought about it over the weekend and the final straw was when I did a mock-pack using the topbox. It is deceptively big and I managed to fit all my camping gear with space to spare for a few tools, a litre of oil (perhaps), some food, clothes and even bivvy bag if the weather is nice. The tent would still have to be packed outside, but that would have been the same which ever system I went for.
So, I decided to use what I already have instead of forking out another €80 on somehting else.
An afternoon of bending, grinding and drilling (sounds immoral, doesn't it?) a length of metal, (some steel flat bar I had lying around), I had a bracket that meant I could mount the topbox.
The mounting plate is bolted at the back to that steel bar, which in turn uses the seat bolts to be held in place. The front of the mounting plate (it actually face the rear of the bike) is bolted to the bolt points used for the grap strap/tool pouch, just behind the rear light, but I used 70mm bolts with ally spacers. This means the topbox is almost level and I was able to fashion a D-lock carrier under the mounting plate using 3 P-clamps...
Now I only need some Heidenau K60s (its got pure off-road tyres at the mo'), about a zillion hours of off-road practice and I can wander off where I please, as far as my ridiculous oil change schedule and ridiculous off-road skills allow...
Thanks for the input, folks!
Brakke: you've picked the wrong forum for your questions.
You will have a lot more success in getting the information you need if you "copy & paste" your post above into a new thread in the "Which Bike" forum. Good luck
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