Installing aluminum panniers... - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-23-2014, 12:29 PM Thread Starter
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Installing aluminum panniers...

Last fall I ordered a pair of "Dirt Baggs" 39L aluminum panniers, black w/ 'beveled' lower outside corner, along w/ a set of GiVi pannier mounts, and they came after we got to AZ.

This spring I mounted up the mounts, then tried to think up w/ a way to attach the panniers to the mounts. I had a couple of ideas, then saw a pic in "Members Rides" that showed how he'd mounted his. Asked the question and the answer came back - Happy Trails, so I ordered the mounts from them. Unfortunately they were out-of-stock, so it took a bit over a month to get them (last Thursday...).

So-o-o, Friday morning I started the install. I had had a friend sit on the bike while I figured where the bags should go, so I took a piece of chalk and marked a few "hard-points" for the left one which I then put onto the workbench, then removed the mount, placed it onto the bag (face down).

Next I took the "Handyman's Secret Weapon" (duct-tape) and attached mount to bag, taking note of my chalk marks. Then I attached the Happy Trails pieces to the GiVi mounts so I could use a center punch and GENTLY tap the center of each hole. Removed the mounts, put a 1/8" bit in my drill and drilled a pilot. The Happy Trail mounts use the metric equivalent to 5/16", so I chucked up a 5/16 bit and made the final holes, de-burred them, then re-attached the GiVi mount and the bag. Looking GOOD! NEXT job - do the same for the right bag.

I'd hoped that I could just lay the left bag over the right one and mark the holes w/ a pencil for the alignment. NO such luck (manufacturing tolerances?), so I repeated the process as above till it TOO was mounted.

So, Saturday AM I went for a ride to Home Depot to get a four-padlock set, keyed alike, then over to Princess Auto (our version of Harbor Freight) to buy some LED tail-lights for the rear of the bags. BIG, I want BIG, so nobody can say they... "Didn't see me..." Also (probably over-kill), I got some 3/4" clamps that I'll add one or two of to each side in the unlikely event that a mount vibrates loose - this way the bag STAYS attached.

The LED lights I bought are 7" diameter w/ 31 diodes, capable of running lights, turn sigs AND brakes, but w/out another part (like when you attach trailer lights to a car w/ separate turn and brake lights) you can't just tie the brake and signal function together.

I figured that mounting the lights centered, but low on the cases would work, and leaving my OEM signals also in the circuit would negate the need for a special LED flasher (LATER I'll go that route, changing my front signals to LEDs), so I held the 7" lights to the rear, marked the holes (they are 1/4"), then drilled a 1/8" pilot for each and decided that I should go a "bit" over 1/4 so I went UP by 1/32", and drilled the holes to 9/32", giving a bit of 'wiggle-room' in the event that my holes weren't perfect.

Attached everything and got out my electrical stuff. Ultimately my plans are to wire it differently (wires INTO the bags, then out near the top mounts w/ a waterproof plug so the bags can be easily removed when necessary by just unplugging the wires, etc.), but for now I used 'taps' to get the power from wires under the seat, and put dis-connects inline so that I CAN remove them even if it takes awhile .

Turned the key to ON - WOW!, then put a signal on - double WOW!!

This wouldn't work for those of you who are 'minimalists', but I want these to be "IN YOUR FACE" so everyone, even the 'texters', see me!

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post #2 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-23-2014, 12:51 PM
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Hot damn those are massive!

I like the extra lighting as well. Great work!

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post #3 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-23-2014, 03:42 PM
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Holy steamer trunk Batman, those puppies are massive. And the lights are great. A blind pensioner could see those. Well done Eddie.

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post #4 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-23-2014, 05:06 PM
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The trunk on my car's not that big! and the light should be seen from coast to coast...both at the same time!

I have a set on 1600 pelicans for my KLR but found myself over packing so got a smaller set 1520 for side boxes and kept one of 1600 a tail trunk.

Or was that look THEN leap?
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post #5 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-23-2014, 06:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fasteddiecopeman View Post
This wouldn't work for those of you who are 'minimalists',
:
That would be me, the minimalist. I don't own enough things to fill those cases! Plus I'd run out of duct tape on the install.
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post #6 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-23-2014, 08:28 PM
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Holy Mullets Bat Chicken those are huge!

Good job Eddie . . it is what you wanted!

What are you going to put in those??





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post #7 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 01:01 AM
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Holy steamer trunk Batman, those puppies are massive. And the lights are great. A blind pensioner could see those.
The texters wont
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post #8 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 06:54 AM
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Eddie those are huge. I started thinking you were making a moving Van. On two wheels.
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post #9 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 08:23 AM
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If you can make them waterproof/airtight, and add two more to the front fork, your V could double as a boat. Maybe replace the rear wheel with an impeller and you'd have a V-Craft.
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post #10 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 11:09 AM
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WOW and I thought my happy trail boxes where huge.
How wide is the whole set up . I am at 35 inches with the happy trail racks and boxes.

Its amazing what the boxes allow you to do or carry . Here is mine carrying the cycle hill tire machine home.
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post #11 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 03:34 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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...What are you going to put in those??
When I do my trips like Alaska last June, w/ THESE bags I can bungee stuff to the lids (tent, sleeping mat, etc), making the HEIGHT of the bike and 'stuff' less, and NOW I can carry a Stetson w/out wrecking it...!

- -

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...How wide is the whole set up . I am at 35 inches with the happy trail racks and boxes....
Just measured - 34.25" at the widest point. I'm PRETTY SURE that I was that wide w/ my soft-bags loaded up. Check the two pics for how HIGH and WIDE it was for D2D 2013....

(and watch for pics of WHAT I'm going to put on each side of 'em...!)
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post #12 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 03:46 PM Thread Starter
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adding a "security-blanket"...

Yesterday I was able to add the 3/4" insulated clamps I mentioned in the "build-thread". I loosened the bags slightly till I was able to 'slide' one leg down between the bag and the top piece of the mounts, mark where the hole should be W/OUT totally removing the bags, then drill a 9/32" hole, and install a 1/4 x 1"UNC bolt, two washers and a Nylock nut for each side, then re-attach the bags. NOW I should be less concerned about possibly having one come "adrift" on a ride. I think the pics will help my explanation.

BTW - just heard from the sign-shop that are making up my "something-specials" for the sides, those 18" x 12" sign-boards. Watch for the pics in a day or two (it's raining here right now...).
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post #13 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 04:28 PM
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Quote:
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BTW - just heard from the sign-shop that are making up my "something-specials" for the sides, those 18" x 12" sign-boards. Watch for the pics in a day or two (it's raining here right now...).
I wonder what that sign could be???



Or was that look THEN leap?
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post #14 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 07:27 PM
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Nice job, are those aircraft Adel clamps, or commercial variety?
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post #15 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-24-2014, 08:44 PM
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those are some sharp looking bags...I got to wonder how they help your performance though... wouldn't they be a little more cosmetic rather than performance?
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post #16 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 01:04 AM
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Those signs something on the lines of "Wide Load" ?
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post #17 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 11:50 AM Thread Starter
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Nice job, are those aircraft Adel clamps, or commercial variety?
I got them from Princess Auto, 15 of 'em for $6.99, so they AIN'T aircraft grade!

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those are some sharp looking bags...I got to wonder how they help your performance though... wouldn't they be a little more cosmetic rather than performance?
They are for PERFORMANCE... carrying "stuff", and I think a jacket might fit....

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Those signs something on the lines of "Wide Load" ?
Nope.

Wait'll you see them...!


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post #18 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 04:41 PM
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Hey Eddie, are you installing a beeper for when you back out of your garage etc?
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post #19 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 04:58 PM
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Nice work brother Now when are you coming back up my way? D2D 2015.....


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post #20 of 54 (permalink) Old 06-25-2014, 05:09 PM
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Hey Eddie, you could pack an elk out with those babies!





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