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Hey guys, I'm riding about 10k miles across the US this summer so I'm packing the bike up pretty heavy. I have the regular panniers and I bought a top box to pack, however, I may need more room so I bought this:


The hope is to tie it down to the passenger seat but I can't seem to find anywhere to attach it that'll work well. It overhangs the OEM grab handles. Any suggestions for people carrying extra luggage?
 

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I'm doing on a 13-15k mile ride next year and starting to figure out what I need... so I'm going through the same checklist you are (maybe a bit slower since I have a lot of time). I thought about a pillion bag, in the past I've used frameless full packs (hiking backpacks) as pillion bags and they've worked really well, but given the 'strong suggestion' to pack as low on the bike as possible I've started looking for something like soft side cases that would fit in front of my hard cases and allow me to pack heavy stuff low on the bike (using both hard and soft side cases)... then I could use the top case and a pillion bag only for light items (tent/bags/pillows, etc...)

Have not found anything yet...
 

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I haven't been doing bike touring long but I'm a pretty quick learner. :)

You really don't need to take as much stuff as you might think. Especially if you're staying in hotels.
 

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Where do you tie it down though? That's what I'm having trouble with
Put your bike model and year in your signature, that way we can figure out the best methods for tie down on your bike.

Plus +1 for the ROC straps.
 

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+2 on the ROK straps. Just don't forget who you loan them to, because you will never see them again... When I have had a topbox, I've found that things stay on the pillon seat pretty well without much need for securing them, so I have gotten along well with bungees long enough to just loop completely around the subframe and hook back to themselves. No tiedown point on the bike itself needed.

FWIW, You might look at some moto-specific bags. The built in straps make them a lot less fiddly to secure.

Where are you going on your trip, and how long will you be on the road? I remember critiquing a friend's bike the night before we left on his first long bike trip. We spent about 2 hrs throwing away all the crap he'd packed that was not needed. The only time I've ever needed additional luggage was when it was a camping-moto trip. I'm a minimalist packer if I'll be staying in civilized accommodations at night.
 

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In my opinion, if you got the Sargeant Seat rack that essentially turns the passenger seat into a flat surface, you may be able to hold more luggage. Securing it should not be an issue since it's designed for loads. Not sure if this can be combined with the top case.
 

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I'm a minimalist packer if I'll be staying in civilized accommodations at night.
Where's the fun in that? ;-)

I'm tentatively shooting for a mix... Hotel once every couple days.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Where's the fun in that? ;-)

I'm tentatively shooting for a mix... Hotel once every couple days.

That's my plan as well. The bike is a 2011 with the OEM top box. Unfortunately there aren't many tie downs for the pillion seat. I may have to move to a smaller bag.
 

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Where's the fun in that? ;-)

I'm tentatively shooting for a mix... Hotel once every couple days.
That's a good way to do it.

I've just found that the older I get, the less I enjoy the camping, at least when it's day after day. I've also found that I enjoy side excursions on trips more than I used to. If I have minimal gear on my bike, I feel pretty safe securing my helmet and riding suit, and leaving the bike for a while (had gear stolen before, no damn fun!) In my youth, I described my trips as 'aggressive sport-touring', pushing the bike and me pretty hard the whole time, stopping and throwing up my tent when I just couldn't go any longer. Now I like to take it easy, pack minimal sh*t on the bike, and smell the roses along the way.
 

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That's my plan as well. The bike is a 2011 with the OEM top box. Unfortunately there aren't many tie downs for the pillion seat. I may have to move to a smaller bag.
24X12x12" (if that is the size you have) is not that large of a bag. Pack soft things in it to act as a backrest. Wedge it against the topbox, and it will stay in place with just a bungee/ROK/etc. or two. As long as you are limber enough to get your leg over it to get on and off the bike, it shouldn't be a problem. :laugh:
 

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+3 for Rok Straps. There's always something to hook them to...usual suspects are subframe, passenger footrest brackets, underside of the luggage rack, or to each other in a pinch as someone else mentioned. Be creative :) If the straps run across painted parts/fairings, you can put some clear vinyl film in place to protect the paint from rubbing marks on long trips.

Pictured is my old BMW F800ST set up for a 2-month, 11k+ tour around the USA. Had a small waterproof duffel strapped to the back seat for a few extra things. The SW Motech Trax sidecases are great -- top-opening and simple, boxy shape make them super easy to use on a daily basis. All my camping gear (tent, ground pad, cooking gear, etc.) fits into one side case.

Later I swapped the Trax cases over to my next bike, Triumph Sprint ST 1050, pictured on a 2-week trip to Death Valley & Joshua Tree & LA.

I've now moved the Trax cases over to my 2014 Multistrada for use on long tours, so they're going on 8 years old now. One of the best gear purchases I've made, much more convenient and versatile than the irregularly-shaped OEM sidecases that come with most sport-touring bikes.

That's what's worked for me...Enjoy your ride and post some pics for us!
 

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That's a good way to do it.

I've just found that the older I get, the less I enjoy the camping, at least when it's day after day. I've also found that I enjoy side excursions on trips more than I used to. If I have minimal gear on my bike, I feel pretty safe securing my helmet and riding suit, and leaving the bike for a while (had gear stolen before, no damn fun!) In my youth, I described my trips as 'aggressive sport-touring', pushing the bike and me pretty hard the whole time, stopping and throwing up my tent when I just couldn't go any longer. Now I like to take it easy, pack minimal sh*t on the bike, and smell the roses along the way.
Understand the sentiment... I don't camp nearly as often as I used to. I also like a warm shower and soft bed to let my back recover after a few nights on the ground. My debate was between just going 'full hotel' or a split... full camping was never in the cards. When I thought it through, I decided I'd have to bring camping gear either way since some of the trip will be in Northern Canada and it's probable (I'd almost say it's guaranteed) that I'll get in situations where there's not a hotel handy. Since I'll be carrying the gear... I might as well use it.

I've got camping down to the point that I can fit everything I need for >40f camping in a day pack (small one man, superlight bag, etc...), so it's not as big a burden as if I was carrying a big tent and heavy bag.
 

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I've done the bike camping trip adventure thing and it was fun, but it sucks having all that stuff all over the bike.

ImageUploadedByMotorcycle1464365146.917596.jpg

I find it much more fun to pack light and sport tour like this. I had everything I needed for a 3 week trip and the top case held nothing but camera gear.

It's hard to see but there was a small seat bag holding rain/cold gear and a small tank bag holding things like first aid stuff, sunglasses, water bottle, etc.

One side case held a bottle of scotch, shoes, toiletries, etc. the other side case all the clothes I needed for the trip.

ImageUploadedByMotorcycle1464365248.600258.jpg
 

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I strapped a bag to the passenger seat with a long bungee cord hooked thru the grab handles. Worked well enough until I caught my boot heal in the bag handle getting off the bike. Just about hit the ground and vowed never to strap anything to the seat again.
 

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I'm not a camper, I see no benefits except that it may save you some money. In my opinion, it's just that much extra gear you have to haul. I prefer staying in a nice hotel, eating at a nice restaurant that is within walking distance and then soak in the hot whirlpool and relax. Get a great night sleep ,wake up and then chew up another 7-800 miles.
 

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My preference is to pack extremely light, have room to spare in the bags, strap on nothing, and stay in a hotel every night. I wake up automagically at 6:45am and I am usually on the road by 7:30am. If you like to camp, more power to ya. I like to ride, sleep comfortable, and get on the road quickly. Zoom Zoom Zoom. I tend to do 550+ mile days though, stopping for gas only until it's time to find a hotel. What's around the next corner?????
 

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Rok straps attached to the passenger grab handles and then criss cross them through the carry handles of your bag. It should make a nice occasional back rest and be plenty secure once you cinch it down. I just did 2600 miles with my small Ortlieb secured that way. Other riders regularly come over and ask if that's all I travel with. It's taken me years to realize how little I really need and getting the quick dry thing together. Misc: My main riding gear: two wicking T-shirts, two Ex-Officio boxers, and two pair BMW riding sox...all of which can be washed and dried over night on the shower rod...or three of each if you do not want to do wash every night.
 
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