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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi folks!

As you may or may not know, I'm headed on a one year trip to S. America at the end of August to Tierra del Fuego. The last thing I really need is luggage. I'm pretty set on aluminum (but open to your thoughts), locking luggage because I think it would be bomb proof for the 1+ year I'm gone; as well as more secure for people not to jack stuff in. For instance, I can put my laptop/kindle/etc in it when I'm going to be on a hike away from the bike. Also I'd like to get luggage that I can move from bike to bike. Anyways it seems the options are:

* Jesse Bags - Round $1000 for their odyssey 2 setup. Very wide though at 9" and will make horizontal clearance an issue.
* Happy Trails Cascade $750 - I like these because I get 38L in each bag with 7.5" width, which is 3" less width compared to the Jesse bags
* Motorsport Used 24.5L bags Aluminum Panniers + mounts - DL1000 VStrom - ADVrider ... $500 but I have to buy the mounting bracket and no idea how much these cost.
* e!ic pannier from eric - apparently he's a really flaky guy but I think if i pay only after he's installed the bags it wouldn't be horrible. Epic Panniers

I'm definitely on a budget and would to spend no more than $500-700 instead of $1000. I mean I bought the whole bike for $3400!

Thanks for your help in advance.
 

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Just got me some second hand Pelican cases - these things are over the top burly, and quite light......I'd recon they'd take twice the beating an aluminum case would take, and ask for seconds. They ain't sexy, but they're near indestructible, I'd say.
 

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I was wondering if you left yet, I was intrigued with your quest as you told us at the last Rob o Rama work session. Anyway, I am thinking about selling my pelican 1520's. Make you a good deal to help you out. PM me if your interested.
 

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Prime considerations for the trip would be:

1: Theft security

2: Crash Durability

3: Optional tie down areas on exterior

4: Mounting options

5: Clearance for trailwidth, and "knee drag" clearance

6: Capacity

7: Price, turn around, and quality (material thickness, all welded, no seam ect)

8: Accessability (top loaders typically hold more, and your stuff does not fall out upon opening, lids that stay put, hinge quality ect)


I reviewed these considerations about 4 years ago and settled on the HT Targees/ canyon cut/7.5"/ Powed coat/ w custom lid racks/ Custom latches. I would say the Cascade resembles the Targees pretty close, dimensions may differ.

I have not been disapointed, and the Givi luggage bags fit great inside the cases for grab and go rain days.
 

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I have used Happy Trails on my Dr650 and Jesse on a BMW GS. The Happy Trails are the "value leader" but the Jesse's are more durable, better engineered, and have a better latching mechanism.

If I was going to do an expedition style trip, I would do the Jesse's. If it is just for around town and the weekend trip, Happy Trails are great.
 

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Goldwing Take-Offs?

I'm going to meet a guy at a trike conversion shop tomorrow to pick up a pair of Goldwing side cases, $50 the pair. They're supposed to be 40something liters each, fiberglass. May need paint, but the silver is certain to match ONE of the colors on mine. . .

Now I just have to track down the guy that builds the generic pannier mounts.

FWIW.
 

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Just got me some second hand Pelican cases - these things are over the top burly, and quite light......I'd recon they'd take twice the beating an aluminum case would take, and ask for seconds. They ain't sexy, but they're near indestructible, I'd say.
+1 My sentiments exactly....
 

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Just took my first trip with the TRAX. on the 650 you can do a 45 ltr on the left and a 37 on the right. The motech racks are offset. I love them!

Twisted Throttle has some scratch and dent stuff that is discounted.
 

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+1 on the pelicans I have a set of aluminum black powder coated boxes on right now and I like the pelicans better.

We also used them for work and they are great but the best is if (big if) you break them they replace them free. My alum. boxes are ok but if I could fit my machine in the pelicans I would have those again. There just tough.
 

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You may want to consider the Wolfman soft-side panniers. I have a friend who has been on an extended version of the trip you're doing and decided to go with them because they are lightweight. He's had zero problem with theft.
 

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I used to have aluminum HT cases on my BMW, but went to soft bags for these reasons:

1. Hard luggage can break a leg in back of beyond, if you get caught under it
2. Weight--the cases weigh, what, 30lbs?
3. Security is a falsehood. Who has a set of hard luggage I can't get into with a 12" screwdriver or crowbar?
4. Cost. $750 min for hardbags vs $150 for softies (includes standoff racks)

I pack all my crap in 1 1/2 gallon ziplocks, and don't even bother with rain covers. I do spray then liberally with camp-dry. After a couple or three seasons, it's $100 for a new set.

The downside is they don't hold all those cool stickers...Just my opinion.
 

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My Jesse bags seem real nice.

Go with what your comfortable with and can afford. Soft or hard, you make the call. I personally like the hard for an adventure bike that is not to be used as a dirt bike. If I was hitting the trails I would rather go soft sided.
 

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I currently have the HT Tetons and after bouncing my bike off the side door of a 92 Chevy Corsica then sliding down the road on the same side, my left box had a scuff of paint from the car and some metal ground down on one corner of the box. There was no deformation of the box or the rack at all, that left box is still 100% waterproof.

The four police cops on the scene all were super impressed with how well the HT held up in my crash and said "I'd buy those again if I were you" and "That box saved your leg".

I think that the truth is, no matter how tough you make a box, someone will come along and figure out a way to crash that will screw them up eventually. I was reading another recent ride report on another board, rider went off the road in a curve, his bike bounced off some rocks and his Pelican case exploded like a bomb went off inside it. That's not a slam on Pelicans, just validation of my statement about it completely depending on the crash.

I will say though that I did contemplate switching to the Motechs for the Wee because they are a much nicer looking box and the little table you can get for them is way cool however, after doing a side by side, in person comparison, there is no comparison. The HT boxes are in a whole different category of toughness, definitely on par with Jesse.

In the wreck I had, I have no doubt that Jesse boxes would have been just as good and I have no doubt that the Motech box would have crumpled like a pop can.


Edit.. The downside of HT boxes is having to deal with HT's fluid shipping dates and lack of communication. Order WELL in advance of need and prepare to be patient is my advice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I currently have the HT Tetons and after bouncing my bike off the side door of a 92 Chevy Corsica then sliding down the road on the same side, my left box had a scuff of paint from the car and some metal ground down on one corner of the box. There was no deformation of the box or the rack at all, that left box is still 100% waterproof.

The four police cops on the scene all were super impressed with how well the HT held up in my crash and said "I'd buy those again if I were you" and "That box saved your leg".

I think that the truth is, no matter how tough you make a box, someone will come along and figure out a way to crash that will screw them up eventually. I was reading another recent ride report on another board, rider went off the road in a curve, his bike bounced off some rocks and his Pelican case exploded like a bomb went off inside it. That's not a slam on Pelicans, just validation of my statement about it completely depending on the crash.

I will say though that I did contemplate switching to the Motechs for the Wee because they are a much nicer looking box and the little table you can get for them is way cool however, after doing a side by side, in person comparison, there is no comparison. The HT boxes are in a whole different category of toughness, definitely on par with Jesse.

In the wreck I had, I have no doubt that Jesse boxes would have been just as good and I have no doubt that the Motech box would have crumpled like a pop can.


Edit.. The downside of HT boxes is having to deal with HT's fluid shipping dates and lack of communication. Order WELL in advance of need and prepare to be patient is my advice.
How long did it take them to ship the Happy Trails to you? Why did you go with the Tetons over the Cascade?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Just took my first trip with the TRAX. on the 650 you can do a 45 ltr on the left and a 37 on the right. The motech racks are offset. I love them!

Twisted Throttle has some scratch and dent stuff that is discounted.
+1 on the pelicans I have a set of aluminum black powder coated boxes on right now and I like the pelicans better.

We also used them for work and they are great but the best is if (big if) you break them they replace them free. My alum. boxes are ok but if I could fit my machine in the pelicans I would have those again. There just tough.
Only downside to Pelicans I think is that they don't lock shut or to the bike. Is that correct?
 

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I ordered the Cascades (liked the looks and the added capacity) a couple of weeks ago and they are suppose to ship the 15th of July. The frames are at the powder coat place now according to HT. If you are in a rush - give HT a call. I talked to a really nice lady there who was very helpful when I called to have the key-locks put on that I had forgotten when I made the order.
 

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Only downside to Pelicans I think is that they don't lock shut or to the bike. Is that correct?
No they lock with a pad lock through a hole and as far as the locking to the bike that all depends on how you do it. With my custom alum boxes and my custom rack you would have to either take the seat off or cut the latches off the lids on the boxes to get them off. The Pelicans were mounted with the motech racks and they had a key to lock a knob on each side.

I supose you could cut the plastic of the pelican apart to get into them but that be an easier job on some of the alum boxes I have seen. They are the most resiliant but the size was just a little wrong for me. You also cant beat their warranty, what your bike was laid down at 100mph and it was your fualt and the boxes are ground down to nubs okay send them in just pay shipping. Pelican makes a side box that top loads and can be rolled away like a suitcase it is prety cool I might look into the sizes of those for my next boxes.

good luck.
 

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I've got the Jesse panniers. LOVE THEM!

You get what you pay for, don't forget that. If I were taking a trip to that extent I'd want something I trusted for strength and security. If your going to be putting a lot of valuables in the boxes get something with good locks.

My Jesse boxes are strong, secure, and well built. Don't buy something because you got a good deal, or found for a cheap price and regret it later.
 

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I have the Happy Trails Tetons and really like them. Their customer service is excellent, although it can take awhile to get them especially this time of year. I looked long and hard at Jesse panniers. They are heavier and considerably more expensive. Maybe I'm being a little KLR here, but from my perspective, all the feedback I read on both brands was about equal so I went with the cheaper choice. No regrets at all.
 
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