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Offline Newhorizons

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DYI adventure riders Vinyl pannier set up.
« on: August 30, 2020, 09:44:49 AM »
Objectives; full month of travel, camping and adventure, needed to be light, totally waterproof and flexible in usage. Create additional on bike storage and not too bulky/wide, and low cost just in case of a fall or it misses the brief and becomes a proto type.

Hardware; Nelson Rigg 27ltr vinyl bags, 2 tool/parts trays, aluminium checker plate, aluminium angle strip, pop rivets and various hardware fixings. Drill, angle grinder.

Specs, 44cm W x 14 cm H x 10cm D. Approx 5 ltr each, approx weight 1.9kg each. NR vinyl pannier bag weighs  only 1.9 kg.

Overall cost circa $400 all up, about 3.5 to 4.0 days tinkering.

Scenario; Planning for a long trip on east coast of Oz. Starting with the Triumph Rat Run in early May, then the Ulysses Rally and going further north to the Gold Coast hinterland, further north via Glasshouse Mts onto Bundaberg. Capability of self sufficient camping, off road and national parks and the odd few Caravan Parks and friends stay.

https://www.mxstore.com.au/brand/nelson-rigg/

Base Mount System; rather than a aftermarket rack I adapted a pair of old style metal parts trays. I looked online for boxes, ammo boxes etc and then realised I had old pressed metal spot welded parts boxes. Combined weight with aluminium checker plate and fixtures about 1.9kg each.

Until I identified the parts boxes my option was going to a fabricator and getting aluminium sheet folded and welded. Could have looked really nice but maybe put a coupla hundred dollars onto the  build cost plus time. Maybe smoother and more professional with less screws and rivets but externally my system presents okay and parts were to hand.

My initial guesstimate was I needed around 5/6 cm clearance width on the LHS to ensure that the bag cleared the chain guard, plus I didnt want the bags swinging around over bumps.
The boxes now provide valuable storage (around 5ltr each) and have comprehensive mount points. On the RHS my Oval muffler is now a neat fit and protected but it required cutting the pipe flange, bending it lower and TIG welding so that it fitted under the box.



Offline Newhorizons

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Re: DYI adventure riders Vinyl pannier set up.
« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2020, 09:53:14 AM »
Step one, size up mount points. I had already changed to the Akrapovic muffler because it was the best flowing without insane noise and its Oval shape allowed me to stay close to the frame. (you will need a new mid pipe I think, my bike came with Scorpion system so I had the necessary mid pipe. The Scorpion was way too loud for general riding and touring and when the baffle was in it just didnt breathe.

Using the existing pannier mount points on the frame I market the box, drilled, fitted some aluminium angle inside my box to strengthen the fold and bolted up with flatish allen head bolts to reduce inside bulk, The aluminium angle was also pop riveted. I folded the tab on the parts box and cut the front section, pop riveted some piano hinge and fitted a over spring latch.

Ran aluminium angle down the outer edges inside so that I had a mounting face for the checker plate. Also put a small piece of strap up near the front opening so that the box didnt twist at the opening. Using a pack of small countersunk stainless screws I drilled and screwed the outer alloy checker plate sheet.
 
Using the protective sheet supplied with the NR bag I roughly fitted the strap mounts and various hardware fittings, drew the bag outline and trimmed the checker sheet with the angle grinder. Fitted the bag via its existing round eyelets on the mount strap onto rope hooks on my box. This is right next to the reinforce point on the bag. (see pics below) The straps then go through another aluminium bridge on top of the box across the seat and velco together. So they are really anchored at the loop and hook.

The accessories strap then has 2 bridge points for holding down camping equipment on the top of my box and the outside of the bag, (eg wet tent, ground sheet and fly, maybe chair whatever. This ensures that there is room on top of the box with a small void between the bag and the seat to give stability rather than the bag taking the weight and strap tension.

Additional gear would then sit neatly or maybe some soft clothing/bag on the seat and a dry bag across the lot.... whatever.

I also created strap mounts for all the side straps across the end of the box and one on the alloy checker for the bottom strap. Cut them to length with a hot blade so that they are all the right length.

The NR bags have inner plastic space supports so it will always be around this shape/ width so cutting the frame straps to size minimises on / off time. Just over 2 mins.

Note on the LH side I then had a really strong mount point under the box for a spares tube holding tyre levers, spare tube, own made jumper leads and bits n pieces that might be required in a tyre change. Screw waterproof cap and mounted really low (couple of kgs of gear).

Offline Newhorizons

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Re: DYI adventure riders Vinyl pannier set up.
« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2020, 09:58:19 AM »
The donor parts tray used on top of the NR mounted bag

Good view of the mounting system on top. the strap rings onto the hooks, the Velcro straps across the seat and the additional gear straps looped over the original tray

Offline Newhorizons

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Re: DYI adventure riders Vinyl pannier set up.
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2020, 10:04:40 AM »
My puncture repair plugs and mini pump etc are in my Top box because I move that unit to my other bike when changing saddles. The Top box has all my gloves, waterproofs and small riding gear.

For longer trips some of that repair gear may go into the RH side box with spare oil and ancillary repair parts. That box has a central fold down flap in the checker plate which is hinged and secured with a few screws.

I lost access to the front panel of the box because of the muffler mount inside.... a rear entry door would always be dirty.

Part of the theory was that RH side will likely always be covered with the pannier and if access is required then its probably not a 5 min fix anyway and it still only needs a few straps removed, 2 screws and lifting the bag for access.

After all fixtures were in place and tested, I stripped it back, metal primed everything and 2 coats of enamel black with a small roller.

Offline Newhorizons

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Re: DYI adventure riders Vinyl pannier set up.
« Reply #4 on: August 30, 2020, 10:10:34 AM »
Note there are 2 threaded mounts under the rear frame tail tubes each side covered by small plugs. They now have small angle pieces and bolts onto the box with big washers inside to spread load.

So each box has 4 mount points, two top through the frame to under seat and the 2 angle brackets underneath. I suspect (hope) that it will not need a rear behind/over tyre bracket.

Not fully tested as yet, some bloody virus smashed my trip plan. Note that on the top frame mounts I also fitted strips of rubber between the box and the frame mount. This allowed me to get reasonable tension to the bolt but also provide some movement against the rubber and not create a hard fixed stress point.

I lined both boxes with self adhesive rubber sheet so that all the bolt heads were not prominent and a bottle of Scotch or Red wine would get the rough the rough stuff. .

When I screwed the outer checker plate onto the aluminium angle for the last time I used automotive double sided tape so there is some level of water proofing.

Then fitted 2 automotive reflectors on the back. Note my parts tube for tyre repair tools and rubber tube... less than $30 for this and totally waterproof and hidden.

Offline Newhorizons

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Re: DYI adventure riders Vinyl pannier set up.
« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2020, 10:17:44 AM »
One of the buying advantages of the NR system is that they also provide really functional pads that fit on the inside surface of the bag against the mount point, held securely with Velcro.
So just to the left of the reinforced mounts in the picture is the pad that protects the bag from the checker plate frame. All sits together and doesn't move.

All I had to do was cut that sheet next to my mount straps, push the straps through and onto the box mounts. They are there for the duration.

The single biggest issue noted when investigating soft panniers is "wear" against the frame rub points. So I now have full checker plate backing, the cushion and all straps are secure. All strap points on the NR are reinforced and vinyl welded anyway and worst case scenario if I had a crash the set only cost me $300 Aus, so if vinyl repair/sewing doesnt work just buy a new pair. Maybe bright yellow postal bags next time haha... not.

The one area that was a bit challenging was building the box around the muffler mount. (same mount for the box and muffler) Need to unscrew the outer checker plate screws to get to all the inner muffler mounts and glued inner tube rubber inside to cover the mount hole from water and dirt. Intended use of this box plastic bottles/ tools in waterproof bags.

Offline Newhorizons

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Re: DYI adventure riders Vinyl pannier set up.
« Reply #6 on: August 30, 2020, 10:37:38 AM »
Outer total width is circa 85cm which is pretty much the handle bar width anyway which is reassuring in tight spots or filtering in traffic.

Another buying point for the NR is they are slightly narrower that hard cases and other bags and they have a plastic insert which holds the bag shape. So it is possible to ride it without the inner bags and it will hold shape.

It would also be easy to run a cam lock strap horizontally around each bag and the inner side of the box if that aided in reducing the overall width.  Not tested at this point but may be handy for large road stages, wind and weather.

Havent considered anti theft at this point but how far do you go... another strap and padlock??
I have Givi top box for personals and technology. The panniers have carry away inner material bags with zips anyway.. eg clothes / all camping equipment etc.

Removing an inner bag takes only 1.0 min unless you have lots of other gear strapped on top - only 2 release clips and unwind the top flap.
If you want to remove the whole pannier it takes just over 2 mins anyway, say 5 for both.

If I needed to get special tools/oil/camping equipment from the RHS it would only require the bottom straps being undone and the bag swung up off the checker plate.

The bag strap rings are secured to the box hooks so even after the middle Velcro straps are removed it just sits there, the straps are not the critical holding straps in my system. One of the other features of the hook/ring primary mounts is that the bags also sit right on the box edge at their strongest mount point. (see previous pic)

If I have to get under the 'seat' for other tools or spares only the 2 across seat Velcro straps need to be released and both bags sit securely in place.
Those same central Velcro straps could also be used hold down soft items like waterproofs onto the seat as they are not the primary tension/weight mounts... and you still have the full seat for the pillion if required.

Enjoy ... $400 all up, replaceable anywhere Nelson Riggs is available, totally waterproof, all up weight of less than 8 kilo....my plastic Givi top box weighs almost that empty.
Storage I get 2 x 27ltr plus 2 x 5ltr boxes = 64 kg capacity at the same width as my handlebars and all below seat height ... plus the plastic tube for tyre repairs lower again.

Just cant ride anywhere in stage 4 lock down, wtf.

Online Aussie Tiger

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Re: DYI adventure riders Vinyl pannier set up.
« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2020, 12:28:33 PM »
Great initiative and good outcome. Thanks for posting.
+1 on the Nelson Rigg bags.
Like you, Im looking forward to getting out and about, although were nowhere near as restricted in the ACT as Vic or most of the rest of the country for that matter.

 


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