Where Does It All Go?
When gearing up for a motorcycle adventure, the challenge is to balance style and practicality. But where do you stow your belongings? How do you secure them properly? What’s the weight limit? Let’s unravel the mysteries of motorcycle luggage and ensure you’re well-equipped.
Centralize the Weight for Control
Our primary advice: Less is more! It may sound simple, but it’s a golden rule. Excessive luggage alters your motorcycle’s dynamics, affecting performance. Keep the center of gravity in mind.
Place Luggage as Close to the Center of Gravity as Possible!
Adhering to this principle is half the battle won. Elevating your motorcycle’s center of gravity with luggage can make steering and braking challenging. Your ride becomes smoother when the luggage is positioned close to the bike’s core.
Mind the Maximum Permitted Weight
Your motorcycle’s documentation contains crucial information about the maximum weight it can carry. For rented bikes, estimate the permissible weight beforehand. Older motorcycles, especially, might already be loaded with a pillion and lunch. Decide wisely between your motorcycle buddy and spare essentials.
Strategic Packing Tips
Here’s a handy tip: place heavy items at the bottom and lighter ones on top. It enhances control and minimizes dangerous effects on the road. Now, let’s explore the types of luggage suitable for motorcycles.
The Tank Bag: A Biker’s Staple
Tank bags are a biker’s best companion. Mounting them varies based on your motorcycle. Consult the manufacturer for the best fit. Avoid placing a large tank bag too high, as it can impact steering and obstruct your dashboard view. Ideal for heavier items, the tank bag offers stability and quick access. Watch out for sharp objects that can pose injury risks during accidents.
Luggage Roll: A Flexible Choice
Luggage rolls attached to the pillion seat provide ample space but limit your pillion passenger’s comfort. Positioned close to the center of gravity, they offer stability. Regularly check the lashing straps’ tightness during long rides to prevent slipping. For motorcycles without room for a tank bag, consider a rear bag for additional storage.
Top Case: An Underrated Asset
Often underestimated, the top case is perfect for light carry-on luggage. Mounting it behind the rear axle affects stability with excessive weight. Ideal for storing a helmet, jacket, or light items, it’s a convenient option upon reaching your destination. Ensure your motorcycle is compatible with a top case before considering one.
Saddlebags and Side Cases: Versatile Options
Saddlebags, quick to attach and flexible, offer comfort and usability. They are an affordable alternative to side panniers. Side cases, though, need a suitable carrier but provide ample waterproof storage. Ensure the width of the luggage is considered to avoid entanglements. Lockable side cases add an extra layer of security, often referred to as the “trunk of the motorcycle”.
Consider Underseat Exhaust Systems
Underseat exhaust systems can clash with luggage arrangements, leading to unpleasant surprises upon reaching your destination. Pay special attention if your motorcycle has such an exhaust system. Keep luggage close to the center of gravity but away from the exhaust to prevent damage.
Avoid Handlebar, Fork, and Fender Luggage
Handlebar, fork, and fender luggage constructions are not recommended. They pose safety risks and not only endanger you but also compromise others’ safety. Opt for a lighter load, ensuring proper attachment.
Safety First: Visibility and Tire Pressure
Always ensure taillights and turn signals remain visible with luggage. Your view should never be obstructed. Pay attention to tire pressure adjustments, following the manufacturer’s guidelines. Adjust the rear wheel’s pressure with rear luggage and remember to release air when riding without luggage.
Test Ride for Perfection
Consider a test ride before your journey. Load your bike as planned and take a spin around the block. Evaluate steering, stability, and braking. This trial run might reveal areas for improvement.
In conclusion, a well-packed motorcycle tour demands planning. With a routine and organized approach, you’ll be ready for your next motorcycle tour. Check our social media for advices on motorcycle packing, and share images of your packed bike with us in the CryptoMoto app for motorcyclists. Safe travels!