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Discussion Starter #1
...So I thought I'd share with you how I got it.

Now, if you're asking yourself why would anyone want to outfit their V-Strom with a bike rack, read no further. But for those who may be interested in either purchasing or rolling your own, here's how I did it.

Advantages of this design:
  1. Minimal drilling or modifications to the bike itself.
  2. Stable, and capable of handling a 29er mountain bike.
  3. Less expensive than a Johnny Rack or 2X2.
  4. Removable without tools.
  5. Uses a hockey puck.
Since I have Pelican cases bolted onto my Givi rack, my intention was to use the cases as the foundation of the rack's frame. Because I almost never remove them, this seemed like a good place to start. Of course, if you don't ride with side cases, or you frequently remove them, this design may not be for you.


All the parts for this kit were easily found on-line. Since I purchased them new and went with premium brands (RockyMounts Pitchfork for the tray and Thule Tracker II for the rack) the cost was a bit more than I originally hoped, but it was still under $250, which beats the commercial moto-racks price by a good margin.

The design is simple:

Take a standard Thule cross bar and cut it down to fit the width of the Pelican cases mounted to the bike. Center the RockyMounts Pitchfork on the cross bar and attach Thule Tracker II feet to the ends of the bar. Cap the bar ends with the included rubber caps.


Mount (bolt) the Tracker II foot bases to the Pelican cases using rubber gasket material and fender washers to maintain the cases' waterproof capabilities. The Tracker II were designed to fit into automobile roof channels but required no modifications to work with the Pelican cases. In fact, the flat nuts used to fasten the Tracker II's bases worked perfectly.


Because the standard V-Strom luggage rack has a hole perfectly centered near its rear, I was happy that I didn't need to drill. I just needed to trim out a small hole in the rubber top sheet of the rack.


So with the Tracker II foot bases mounted to the Pelican cases, it's a snap (literally) to attach the feet to the bases. This leaves about a two inch gap between the PitchFork tray and the V-Strom's luggage rack. A hockey puck with a center hole is just the ticket. It allowed me to attach the PitchFork tray to the rack with the stock bolt and thumbscrew.




Now I have a bike rack that I can add/remove from my Wee in less than two minutes. It's very stable and barely changes the riding characteristics of the Wee when fully loaded. It still leaves room to add a duffle bag to the top of my luggage racks. All and all, I'm very stoked with this project.
 

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FORUM GODFATHER.....R.I.P. PAT
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Be very careful. Adding weight and an aerodynamic sail high and well to the rear of the bike's center of mass can make the tail wag the dog. I'd add a Scotts steering stabilizer to help with that at least.
 

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I'd add a Scotts steering stabilizer to help with that at least.
I'd second that, (Just be the first to hop on the GW bandwagon! :yesnod:)

Otherwise, great idea. Truthfully, it probably won't change your weight and balance as much as having a decent sized passenger. It's not a Walmart bike you're hauling so spreading 25-30lbs plus the aluminum rack isn't going to be too bad. That said, a stabilizer is never a bad idea.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the advice. I'll look into the steering stabilizer.

Having toured with my 105lb wife and at least 50lb of gear, I figured the rack/bike combo (at less than 50lb total) would be manageable. So far, it's been good on trips below 60 miles or so. I have yet to experience a stiff cross wind, which I think could cause problems with this setup. We'll see, as I'm making a 200 mile trip for the 4th of July and heading up above 10,000 feet where there will be few trees to shield me from the wind.
 
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