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Old 11-05-2014, 06:22 PM   #1
StriderTB OP
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Military surplus top case project

In my attempt to make my bike heavier in the name of convenience, I've been trying to find a suitable top case to go with my Jesse panniers, but without spending a ton of money. In my searches, I found these military surplus Hardigg shipping containers. You can find them brand new for around $350-$450, but as military surplus, I found this one for $60 shipped via Amazon. It's in better shape than I expected, the waterproof gasket is in perfect condition, and all 4 butterfly latches are in perfect working order.

I plan on mounting the case to my factory VStrom luggage rack, but I haven't quite figured out how I want to mount it yet. I'd like to leave space for a passenger, but mounting it that far back means almost half of the case sits unsupported over the back of the factory rack. I'm going to look into some different mounting options, but here's a rough idea of what it'll look like.





I grabbed my Nolan N104 to see if it fit, and it does, as long as it's on its side, and as long as I detach my Sena SMH10 module. Good enough for me!





Case dimensions are as follows:

18.75" long x 18.88" wide x 12.19" tall
Weighs 14.5 lbs

Compared to the Jesse top case:

15″ x 17″ x 11″
Weighs 12ish lbs

I like the idea of the Jesse QRDP mounting plate, and there's also the Caribou rear plate.

Thoughts?
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Old 11-05-2014, 08:44 PM   #2
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That case looks quite similar to the one I'm looking at on a different site. I'm looking forward to following your progress!
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Old 11-05-2014, 08:49 PM   #3
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Here's the link to Amazon, where I ordered mine. I used US Pawn & Surplus, and their service was great!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listi...&condition=all
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Old 11-05-2014, 09:22 PM   #4
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Thanks - that's about $10 less than my other site. I'll be ordering in the next few weeks as I plan my winter projects. Glad to see it's working for you so far.
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Old 11-06-2014, 05:29 AM   #5
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CL is an easy source for used Pelicans as an alternative to the surplus case. There are also "other brand cases" cheaper then Pelicans or SKB's or surplus & new. I mtd mine using 6mm SS carriage bolts up through carrier plate, rubber bumpers between case & plate, with threaded knobs inside case over fender washers. ebay/Zoro tools sells cam locks cheaply.
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Old 11-10-2014, 04:06 PM   #6
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Got my MilSurp top box but haven't mounted it yet. I'm thrilled with it for $36 from General Jim's...





They did have the one you got Stryder, but I liked this one better. General Jim's had yours for ~$45, but they don't have their inventory online at this time...
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Old 11-10-2014, 04:10 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StriderTB View Post
Here's the link to Amazon, where I ordered mine. I used US Pawn & Surplus, and their service was great!

http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listi...&condition=all
Exactly what I needed! Just placed an order, thanks
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Old 11-10-2014, 07:09 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moose97 View Post
Got my MilSurp top box but haven't mounted it yet. I'm thrilled with it for $36 from General Jim's...





They did have the one you got Stryder, but I liked this one better. General Jim's had yours for ~$45, but they don't have their inventory online at this time...
Very nice! I've never seen that one before. Looks like it has a 3 digit luggage lock on it.
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Old 11-10-2014, 07:35 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by StriderTB View Post
Very nice! I've never seen that one before. Looks like it has a 3 digit luggage lock on it.
It does. I'm not planning on using it, and may even superglue it so no one locks me out of the case (it's set to all zeros right now). I had seen one like it but smaller for night vision equipment, but they are hard to find. http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=799302
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Old 11-12-2014, 05:31 AM   #10
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As an update, I just got around to weighing & measuring my case: 8.4 lbs and usable interior space = 17.5" x 14.5" x 8"
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Old 04-08-2015, 05:34 AM   #11
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Finally got around to ordering a cargo plate for this case, went with a black Caribou top plate. 1/8" thick aircraft aluminum, and bolts right in with no drama. :)



Here's the case on top, lined up with mounting holes. I marked everything off, now I just need to drill the case and bolt it to the rack.





I just wish I could ride, but my stupid broken arm is keeping me off the bike for another 6-8 weeks.
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Old 04-27-2015, 06:07 AM   #12
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Finally got around to mounting everything up!





Rode to work this morning for the first time this season! Love the extra storage space the top case gives me, and it lets me secure my full face helmet instead of clamping it to the handlebars or carrying it around with me.

All told, the project was pretty cheap. Just about $160 all told.

Top case - $60
Caribou Cases rear cargo plate - $90
Various stainless nuts and bolts - $6-ish

It doesn't have any quick disconnect ability, but it's secure. Plus, the side clasps on the lid have hoops for padlocks, so I can lock it up if I want.
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