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Camping Equipment and all Clothing Tents, sleeping bags, stoves etc. Riding clothing, boots, helmets, what to wear when not riding, etc.
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Old 13 Jan 2014
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Packing/loading the bike


I'm due to fly out to Dubai, then to Buenos Aires, where I'll stay a week or two and brush up my Spanish, then onto Santiago where I'll undertake a voluntary position for the Chilean government for six months. I'll buy the bike in Chile.

So I'm trying to pack my stuff. I did buy a large TNF Duffle bag hold-all and threw everything in there, with an intention on just strapping it to the bike. Yet I figured wet riding gear, a soaking tent, fuel canisters, etc, do not mix well with fresh clothes and sleeping bags, etc.

Now I was thinking about buying a Ortlieb 31lt bikers duffle bag, and a TNF 30lt backpack. This gives me a bit more flexibility and diving up my equipment, and perhaps I'll buy some small lightweight panniers to keep spare petrol, food, water, etc, in whilst on the road. So I'm wondering a few things:-

Do you load the tent on the bike or store it away? If you wrap the tent up using the outer layer, does it really matter if it gets wet?

Is a topbox a good idea, for when stopping to throw in your stinky riding jacket, helmet, gloves, boots etc? I know that people don't like loading them up for the road, given their high position...

How about security? Do you worry about gear pixies lifting the stuff when you go check out x tourist attraction?

Any tips or advice would be fantastic


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Old 13 Jan 2014
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I prefer to have my luggage locked away in panniers with a tank bag and/or rucksack strapped on the back that can be carried with me when away from the bike.
It is also important to be able to separate you wet stuff from everything else so having two places for carrying things is useful.
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Old 13 Jan 2014
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Get some waterproof stuff sacks of different colour/sizes so you can keep your wet and dry stuff separated and help organise your gear. I like podsacs.

Security is more about perception in my experience. Take a disc lock and a rain cover, out of sight is out of mind.
www.AdventureVagabond.com Mongolia & Siberia 2012: Adventure Moto Madness
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Old 13 Jan 2014
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Thanks guys.

I was also wondering, for those who travel lightweight on smaller bikes, approximately how many litres of space do you take/need to pack your equipment in? Right now I'm looking at 60-70lt, but I'll add a little more either through topbox or small panniers later on (mainly to house stuff for the bike and/or food & water).
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Old 13 Jan 2014
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It really depends on your expectations. I'd say 50l max.

They're not ideal, nothing is, but if you want something simple and likely compatible a giant loop would be a good option. On a small bike with a 10" or narrower seat the coyote is awesome. It's 30l and allows for a small roll closure bag for your tent. It won't need a rack so it's the simplest option.

A bike is not a pack horse. If you carry all your gear and can't see yourself going for a hike you've probably got too much.

Don't get too hung up on theft and waterproof. Clothes and sleeping bag (and electronics) are about the only things that can't get wet. As suggested they are easily kept dry.
Plenty of threads on theft already.
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Old 13 Jan 2014
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Originally Posted by ridetheworld View Post

So I'm trying to pack my stuff. I did buy a large TNF Duffle bag hold-all and threw everything in there, with an intention on just strapping it to the bike.
RTW - your trip sounds great.

With respect to the TNF Duffle, I have discovered from experience that they are not waterproof (not sure if they are advertised as such?). Water resistant if sitting in the rain, perhaps, but strapped on the back of a moving motorcycle, they are definitely not. I suspect that it is related to the water being forced through the zipper, but I have been unable to prove this.

I believe the Ortlieb style "roll tops" are better in this regard and I wouldn't buy the TNF (or zipper style duffle) again for the above reason. Of course, you may have better luck!

Good luck with the trip!
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Old 13 Jan 2014
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Originally Posted by DaleC View Post

With respect to the TNF Duffle, I have discovered from experience that they are not waterproof........
Hi Dale,

Thanks for the advice. Yes I hope the trip will work out well. I'm really excited but right now I feel like I've packed and unpacked the same bag a hundred times! But I suspect your right about the TNF bag, the zip is definitely not sealed so I imagine water would eventually work itself through it. I guess after all, if water can go through solid rock, it can certainly go through a zipper at 80mph... I've ordered an Ortlieb, so will see how that stacks up. Thanks!
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