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California Scientific
4011 Seaport Blvd
West Sacramento, CA 95691
Sales@CalSci.com
800-284-8112
916-372-6800

Motorcycle Saddlebags and Luggage

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Soft Saddle Bags

There's a zillion people making very nice soft saddlebags bags now. They all have their plusses. Pick what you like. Personally, I like Chase-Harper, Eclipse, GIVI and Nelson-Rigg. Below are some examples of larger bags, suitable for long trips on larger bikes. There are also sport bags made for race-type bikes. I've been using Nelson-Rigg bags for some time. These bags are unconditionally guaranteed. I've destroyed a couple sets now, completely my fault, and the bags were replaced with no questions. I recommend this company without reservation.

Soft saddlebags will tend to scuff up your paint, so it's worth while to make sure the vulnerable parts on your bike are protected with clear vinyl, or at least a soft towel. If you work on the bags for a while, you can improve them enormously. For example, find a wholesale plastics company near you, and buy some 1/8" ABS sheet. You can cut this with a good pair of scissors and make extra stiffeners for the bags. You can make a backing plate out of 1/8" aluminum which will hold then flatter. Finally, with some 1/4" welding rod and some ingenuity, you can make some brackets that attach to your passenger peg mounts, you rear fender, and your fender mounts. Brackets like this will hold the bags in place and keep them from moving around so much. A single U shaped bar which attaches to both your passenger peg mounts and your rear fender will eliminate most of the wobble.

Chase Harper dual sport bags
Chase Harper dual sport bags. 26 liters.
$130 from Accessory Warehouse

Chase Harper sport tour bags
Chase Harper sport tour bags. 31 liters.
$136 from Accessory Warehouse

Eclipse interstate bags
Eclipse interstate. 32 liters.
$109 from Accessory Warehouse

GIVI bags
GIVI T421. 33 liters.
$138 from California Sport Touring

checkmark Nelson-Rigg SB900 touring
Nelson-Rigg SB900 touring. 33 liters. I use these and like them. Nelson-Rigg has an unconditional guarantee and excellent customer support. I recommend this company without hesitation. $81 fromAccessory Warehouse


Hard Saddle Bags

You can get GIVI saddlebags pretty much anywhere. They are very high quality, but the mounts tend to stick them out pretty far - it's not unusual for a bike with GIVIs to be 45 inches wide.

GIVI owns a subsidiary, Kappa, which sells pretty much the same stuff for less money. The mounts are identical. In 3/04, Kappa has no N.American distributor. However, Suzuki sells them for the V-Strom. Expect to pay about $525 for two saddlebags and a trunk from Suzuki. Mounts are extra, but you can use any GIVI mounts.

Krauser makes exceptionally strong bags and trunk. There is no official US distributor, and the web page is all in German.Good luck. Hint: twistedthrottle.com or Riderhaus.com.

BMW sells their bags and trunks separately from their accessory catalog. Bags from a R100RS are about $425 / pair, mounts extra. You'll probably wind up having to make your own mounts. Very nice bags, though.

National Cycle makes hard bags, available through J.C.Whitney.

Krauser trunk
Krauser trunk.


Aluminum Saddle Bags

Aluminum saddlebags are popular with the adventure / touring set. I dunno about these - I'd feel pretty bad falling down on my $1000 saddlebags.

Happy Trail aluminum panniers
Happy Trail aluminum panniers. Available in 25 to 45 liters.
$750 from Happy-trail.com

Moto-Sport Baja Bags
Moto-Sport Baja Bags. Available in 26 to 37 liters.
$800 from Moto-Sport

ZEGA Aluminum cases ZEGA Aluminum cases
ZEGA Aluminum cases. Available in 35 or 41 liters.
$900 from Touratech

Jesse Aluminum cases Jesse Aluminum cases
Jesse Aluminum cases.48 liters each, bike is only 36" wide with these on. $1050. Available in silver, Gunmetal grey, black.

Hepco Becker cases Hepco Becker cases
Hepco Becker aluminum side cases, about $900-1000. From Adventurers Workshop.