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Yamaha Tech Originally the Yamaha XT600 Tech Forum, due to demand it now includes all Yamaha's technical / mechanical / repair / preparation questions.
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  #16  
Old 16 Aug 2009
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Same Problem as You guys for Panniers... Solved

I had same problem as everyone here looking for affordable racks and panniers for my 1994 XT 600E. So, after finally looking at many different systems all needed custom work to make fit....I made my own. Cost about $55-$60 USD in steel and the highest quality fasteners I could buy. I did not weld any of the frame. Used nylon locking nuts and lock washers at points that needed a bend or attachment. 11 and 12 gauge steel. Mounts in rear into foot peg mounts. (rear foot pegs removed)

I bought a vintage suitcase and briefcase to use as temporary bags when I was in Denver at a thrift store. It took me a full day to fabricate it and put it all together. I am testing now for strength with some short 100-200 mile touring runs. Whole system is pretty light. Might upgrade bags to 20mm Ammo canisters. I don't know that I trust the plastic suitcases for long tours. The one that is a briefcase takes in a little water because it has NO rubber seals or gaskets. I attached with rubber washers to my pannier frame. When I am sure its going to hold up, I will paint it flat black. Maybe get the ammo cans to hold more gear.

Getting lots of positive comments from touring people on new bikes with expensive systems. They seem to like the vintage suitcase and DIY look.

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  #17  
Old 17 Aug 2009
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That looks a really good system, neat and practical. Could you post some pictures without the cases in position, to show the structure better?
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  #18  
Old 17 Aug 2009
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MATE !!

Forget it...

Just get some good quality soft bags...

I had metal mules on mine and they got trashed in a crash. I swapped them for some soft bags and my god ! WHAT AN IMPROVEMENT !! (and an EXPENSIVE lesson)..

The XT600 isnt great with big heavy boxes on it. It's a poorly suspended budget bike as it is, and the boxes make it HORRIBLE when the tarmac runs out..

I got these and they were FABULOUS !!! My trip enjoyment level rocketed when my bike got lighter and more maneuverable..

You just throw them over your shoulder when you find your hotel/campsite ! JOB DONE !



These cost me under £100 although I dont think you can get them in the UK, although you get the idea !

Keep you cash for petrol and
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Ushuaia - Colombia 2007/8
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  #19  
Old 17 Aug 2009
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I'd considered soft bags, but always came across the problem of how you keep them off the exhaust. On mine (Micron can) the bag would rest half on the zorst can and half on the little flimsy plastic panel. If I bought/made a rack, it would be purely to keep things in place and away from the hot bits - I'd probably go the soft luggage route as well. What I liked about 757's idea is that it is light and minimal - not like a reconstituted Forth Road Bridge which, you are right, would weight the back down something rotten. Plus you get a load more lashing points.
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  #20  
Old 18 Aug 2009
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Zulu

When I take the suitcases off I will take more pictures. But its pretty simple. just take angle iron (steel), a grinder with a diamond cutting blade, and a measuring tape and start at the hole where the blinkers are attached and work your way down to the top foot peg hole. (on the exhaust side I used the lower exhaust mounting screw for the low point) cut one half of the angle (one side of the L shape) to bend. Then run a flat piece of steel from the foot peg bolt or lower exhaust mount hole (that is your lowest connection point and run up to your highest point). drill holes and screw that piece on. I will take some pictures. then you will need to run a piece across the back for support. you will be buying some longer screws for the foot peg and lower exhaust holes and bout 1.5" spacers and washers.

* note I changed my original design after a 175 mile trip yesterday. i originally had the rear support piece going on the inside of the rear fender near wheel. Well big bumps bent that piece. so today I made a new one that goes outside the fender.

Soft bags..require some sort of framing to keep them off the wheel and off the exhaust. The cheapest rack I found was about $125 and they are for the new XT225s and require modification. so, by the time you spend for all that, and then $100+ for soft bags...you are in to the whole system for $250-350USD You can use a system like mine for soft bags also.

mine was cheap and light (frame maybe 5lbs / 12kilos )...that's the selling point. And, after my trip yesterday I feel really confident in my system. Speeds up to 70-75 mph and they hung on there good.

Here's a picture of the new rear support bar moved outside the fender. And some pictures of the rack from the inside so you can see my design better. I used 1.5 inch spacer at the lowest attachment point to give it the room needed to make it wide enough to miss the exhaust and the plastic on side of bike.

In the last two pictures (last pic in next post) you can see the right side with a support piece and on the left side there is one to fill in where i cut half the angle to bend. on the right side i did. wanted to see how both would hold up.

757


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Attached Thumbnails
Which XT600E Panniers and racks?-dscn2797.jpg  

Which XT600E Panniers and racks?-dscn2798.jpg  

Which XT600E Panniers and racks?-dscn2799.jpg  

Which XT600E Panniers and racks?-dscn2800.jpg  

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  #21  
Old 18 Aug 2009
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reposted one from above because it was sideways

then the 2nd pic is off the left side with corner bracket to compensate for the cut steel

after the ride yesterday, i dont think this was even needed.


757



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  #22  
Old 18 Aug 2009
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oops that one didnt make it. here it is
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  #23  
Old 18 Aug 2009
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Thanks for the pics, 757. It looks just the job for a lightweight application like I am looking for. I would guess that after you had got all the dimensions and angles right with it bolted up, you could run a welder round most of it to make it permanent.

Next question - how do you attach the cases?
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  #24  
Old 18 Aug 2009
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Z,

Yes you can spot weld joints to make it more permanent for sure.

The cases... I just determined where I wanted them to hang and drilled a hole through the case and the newly constructed frame. You can drill the frame first then hold the case up and use a pen to mark holes on case and drill it second. Then used bolt, rubber washers (on inside of case and outside), steel washers (push against rubber washers) and a nylon lock cap nut.

So from inside the case to out sequence like this ( bolt head,metal washer, rubber washer, case body, (now outside case) rubber washer, metal washer, (through the frame) metal washer , locking nut.


hope this helps.

757
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  #25  
Old 18 Aug 2009
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Thanks. I can see a winter project coming up. I think I'll probably stick with the soft luggage, but the light frame to support them looks excellent.
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  #26  
Old 18 Aug 2009
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They look very smart Ted. I have a pair of Oxford Sports panniers which I'll try and fit first, although I'm not sure about the width fitting over the rack I'm going to get. All being well, the money saved can go on a bash plate or Garmin satnav!
Where did you buy those panniers? They look quite deep. How do they compare for size against a pair of Oxford Sports panniers? Final question; do you use any sort of heatshield? I have a Remus can on mine, as well as the stainless headers.
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  #27  
Old 19 Aug 2009
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Had a problem a couple of years ago on a last min dash to skegness. My mates backed out so i asked the wife along for the trip. threw a pair of soft panniers on and headed off. At the first fuel stop noticed that the paniers had moved and were sitting comfortably around the exhaust with both of my wifes dresses (one apparently her favourate) ever so slightly burned and all of here make up melted.

Obviously i wasn't the most popular chap then, even after a stop on the way to buy repacement clothes.

On reflection the options i now had were 1, not take the wife out on the bike again, or 2, make up some sort of protector.

So option 2 it was. I decided to make a template from 15mm copper pipe i had kicking round in the shed. 1m of pipe, 4 elbows and 2 tee pieces, a bit of soldering and the frame was made.

i fastened it to the side rail bolts, just flattened the pipe coming from the tee pieces and drilled a hole. Simple. lasted about 2 years and cost about £3. where as i'm sure the misses stung me for about £150

Paul
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  #28  
Old 19 Aug 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IGGYTR View Post
They look very smart Ted. I have a pair of Oxford Sports panniers which I'll try and fit first, although I'm not sure about the width fitting over the rack I'm going to get. All being well, the money saved can go on a bash plate or Garmin satnav!
Where did you buy those panniers? They look quite deep. How do they compare for size against a pair of Oxford Sports panniers? Final question; do you use any sort of heatshield? I have a Remus can on mine, as well as the stainless headers.
I don't know how they compare as I havnt used the Oxfords. These cortech ones are brill. I was lucky that an American girl brought them to BSAS for me after my Metal mules got turned into scrap metal in a crash..

I had the bent metal mule pannier frames to act as a heat shield although you can easily make or buy some cheap pannier rails...

I really do urge you to go soft .... The weight and size of hard boxes is a nightmare and when/if you crash or even fall, they often bend and the brackets snap etc.. With softbags, the WORST that will happen is a rip or tear which is SOOOO easy to fix yourself.

The wieght saving is brilliant too making your XT handle much better offroad and when you drop the bike, the soft bags just absorb the crash and save the bodywork ! BONUS

Finding someone who can sow is about 1000000x easier than someone who can weld aluminium !!

As for security, Pacsafe work if you're paranoid but I would just have a lockable topbox for any valuables and just use the side bags for clothes, books, etc etc ! But I have never had anyone try and get into my bags anyway...


Before !!! £900 Aluminium luggage



After a crash !!





I admit this was a high speed crash on sand/gravel but the bust luggage made the trip a nightmare until I could replace it !!
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India 2012
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  #29  
Old 19 Aug 2009
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Cheers fella's. I hope there were no long term side effects of that little off Ted?! I can't see how Metalmule can justify their prices. The current price for that setup is circa £1200! My estimated cost is around £450 all in, with soft bags obviously, pannier rack and a half decent top box or pacsafe type soft bag on top.
The spending just keeps on going...
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  #30  
Old 19 Aug 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IGGYTR View Post
Cheers fella's. I hope there were no long term side effects of that little off Ted?! I can't see how Metalmule can justify their prices. The current price for that setup is circa £1200! My estimated cost is around £450 all in, with soft bags obviously, pannier rack and a half decent top box or pacsafe type soft bag on top.
The spending just keeps on going...
Naaah Im fine.. .I bounce well


The guys at MM are very helpful, friendly and genuine travellers. Their stuff is very well made but I think its more suited to glossy magazines than the wilds of the world. It's too complicated and difficult to repair.

Can they justify their prices ??? Well, as long as Mr BMW 1200GS keeps buying their gear at those prices to show off at the local pub, why would you charge less ??? Profit isnt a dirty word when you're trying to put bread on the table.

As for your budget....

Softbags = £150 (MAX)
Racks = £100 (TT do racks for XT for £220 I think)
Top box and carrier= £50 (Ebay)
Pacsafes = £60 for 2

You can EASILY do all this for £450 or less.
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2001 NX650 Dominator.

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Ushuaia - Colombia 2007/8
UK- South Africa 2010/11
India 2012
Yukon 2012
S.E Asia 2014
U.K - Magadan 2015

Last edited by *Touring Ted*; 19 Aug 2009 at 22:05.
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