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Old 12-23-2012, 05:07 PM   #1
Jason KLR OP
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Joined: Oct 2012
Location: North Vancouver
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Pannier Width

Hi all,

I've also posted this on KLR650, my 2nd home so forgive the double post!

I have ammo cans on dirt racks on my 2011 KLR at the moment. I don't leave them on the bike because at 17lb ea they are noticeably heavy and at 8.25" fairly wide. I use my KLR for putting around mostly and would rather drag less weight/width if I can avoid it.

I'm in touch with a gentleman who can make me a set of aluminum panniers in any dimension for a reasonable price (ill reserve their info until I test the product so I don't offer a poor choice to every one).

I'd like to leave these panniers in full time and don't plan to do long distance touring (can't w work anyway) so they have to be practical yet out of the way. I'm set on the height at 14" and length at 16" however the width is what I'd like advice on.

I planned for 6" width however th builder said with the .75" lip that would leave me with an opening of only 4.5" due to the gasket which limits what I can stuff in there. I inventoried my camping stuff and w large items going in a drybag I should be ok but you never know. My other option is 7.5" but that's getting wider than the handle bars which I wanted to avoid.

Any though or experience would be great thanks.
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Old 12-23-2012, 05:26 PM   #2
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Joined: Jul 2010
Location: Canyon Country, Ca
Oddometer: 895
For everyday, general use panniers, Id go for bar width. Thinner is better providing you can fit what you need.
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Old 12-23-2012, 06:38 PM   #3
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Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Barrie Ont
Oddometer: 6,132
First of all welcome...

Under handlbar width is great but not the deciding factor. I had a strom with aluminum cases and the bike was 48in wide at the luggage. Wider than I wanted but carried lots of stuff.

If you can fit your gear in the small bags you're all set. If not, well..... or add a trunk and rear seat bag.

Don't sweat the petty things; Pet the sweaty things !!!
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Old 12-23-2012, 07:10 PM   #4
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Joined: Sep 2009
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Originally Posted by KG6BWS View Post
For everyday, general use panniers, Id go for bar width. Thinner is better providing you can fit what you need.

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Old 12-24-2012, 04:33 AM   #5
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Joined: Dec 2005
Location: Maine
Oddometer: 2,948
I have 8.4 inside width on the right and 6.4 inside width by the exhaust and I made my rack offset so the outside edges are centered on the bike. They come out just an inch narrower than the bars and a few inches narrower than the aluminum hand protectors.

I don't know what rack you use, but if you can make it asymmetrical, the two sizes of cases really are handy.
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Old 12-24-2012, 07:21 PM   #6
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Location: Earth
Oddometer: 2,436
I recommend narrow enough so you don't slam the outer edge of your left bags lower corner into the Alfa Romeo's right rear bumper when he decided to stop short in the left turning lane so I had to swerve to avoid. Thought I had it made, but the bag caught and being made of aluminum folded up nicely. My next bags will be the narrowest option available. This will cut down on weight too.
Normal is just a setting on the dryer.
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Old 12-31-2012, 11:54 AM   #7
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Joined: Apr 2010
Location: Orange County, CA
Oddometer: 2,241
id say bar width, or knee width.

on my bmw, i went with engine width.
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