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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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  #1  
Old 23 Jan 2008
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Topbox - which is the best? (for our situation)

Hi Folks... I've been lurking here quite a bit but have not posted much. Now I'm looking for your advice.

We are gearing up to ride from Eastern Canada through South America starting this fall (2008). I say we as we'll be riding 2-up on our '06 R1200GS Adventure.

I've read the various threads about the pros and cons of topboxes. And I can appreciate why some (if not most) would counsel against having one. However, my significant other would feel more comfortable leaning against something solid. And I'm all for keeping her as comfortable as possible. If she's happy, I'm happy.

From the reading I've done, this South American trip will be about 80% hardtop and 20% loose dirt/gravel/salt.

I was considering adding the Hepco-Becker Gobi, but as I was reading this forum tonight, it hit me that this might be too large. The danger, as I see it, is that topboxes can add a lot of weight up high, raising the center of gravity. That's obvious. But with the Gobi's 42 liter capacity we might be tempted to pack too much that high. Also, I understand (from reading this forum) that this box is not the lightest. So we'd already be starting at a disadvantage.

We have the BMW OEM R1200GS Adventure panniers. Not the greatest, but we will give them a test this summer before we leave in September.

Taking into consideration the above, what would you suggest we use as a topbox.

Thank you in advance for your advice.

Robert
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  #2  
Old 23 Jan 2008
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You already have a lot of weight up top, you and the misses! I wouldn't worry about adding a topbox. You will get used to the extra weight in a few days, if you notice it at all. They're so usefull for giving you quick access to you camera, day food, waterproofs etc I can't imagine touring without mine. For two of you you want a big one. I prefer Givi and have a Maxia 52 litre. They have rounded edges. I don't like the sharp corners on metal boxes. Try one.
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  #3  
Old 23 Jan 2008
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Thumbs up

Ditto on that - I used a Givi two-up very happily. Having everything lockable on the bike (tank bag comes into the restaurant with me) was great. Don't put the heavy stuff there obviously.

Simon
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  #4  
Old 23 Jan 2008
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I'm in on that one too. It's not a fashionable box but offers so many practicalities that luggage without locks cannot compete with. Only one suggestion that goes with this - If you take the GIVI box try to get hold of the metal catch that secures it to the frame. Mine broke on rough trail in Peru and being a cast piece it could not be repaired very easily. Without that piece the box isn't quite the same - just try bungying it on.

It might just be me though - I have a habit of wrecking my kit.
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Old 23 Jan 2008
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me three or is it 4..
I also have the a huge top box mines from Jesse panniers.. I think it is like 60ltr, But the wife wants something to lean on so she gets it.. that simple.. As for the weight. well we keep it empty mostly, only things that we will be pulling in and out each stop .. so my camera gear (not the main body as i want faster access to that..), when we stop anywhere, rest of the camera gear comes out helmets go in.. locky locky .. and we are off ...not having to lug the helmets around.. It has made a lot of trips alot nicer... so get a big one.. and remeber you dont HAVE to fill it..
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Old 23 Jan 2008
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Thanks all for your advice

I don't see any option but to get one. When you're a passenger you have the luxury of being able to relax and take in the surroundings without needing to pay attention to the road.

I know my SO will be much more relaxed, secure and comfortable with a topcase. And so true, we don't have to fill it.

Does anyone have advice on which topcases to avoid?

Robert
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Old 24 Jan 2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWRC View Post
I don't see any option but to get one. When you're a passenger you have the luxury of being able to relax and take in the surroundings without needing to pay attention to the road.

I know my SO will be much more relaxed, secure and comfortable with a topcase. And so true, we don't have to fill it.

Does anyone have advice on which topcases to avoid?

Robert
I have heard that the givi (at least the older ones) are very easy to break in to.. other then that.. sorry.. I can say that i really like my jesse...
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  #8  
Old 15 Feb 2008
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Thumbs up Peli case top box

Hi all
I found a peli case with a sturdy hand made base was indestructable on my ktm 640 through africa. It is wide, low on height has rounded corners and can be bought in lots of sizes.
Lockable too, bought it at the factory in spain cheep years ago.
hope this helps,
motogaz australia
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  #9  
Old 13 Mar 2008
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I use a small Givi for two up riding, very handy for keeping washing/bathroom kit, snack food, tire inflator and medical pack in. The misses also leans up against it, she hates to ride without it on the back.

I don't put in too much kit as you can make it way to heavy, mine has a BMW barrel lock installed, and it doesn't rattle around too much. Just make sure you have a good mounting solution and that the mounts can be stabilised by a good rack. (Touratech one in my case, that my panniers mount to) That way it should mess up your frame or crack anything that shouldn't be cracked.
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Old 18 Mar 2008
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Thanks

Thanks for the great responses and suggestions.
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  #11  
Old 18 Mar 2008
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Hepco Becker Junior

If you are riding two up, I strongly recommend the Hepco Becker Junior with the optional backrest and luggage rack. It is big, strong, and the passenger is very comfortable using one as a backrest.
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