Hard Panniers & Broken Legs: Myth or Reality?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by robhar54, Jan 4, 2009.

?

Hard Panniers & Broken Legs: What's the deal?

  1. I have personally seen (or had) broken legs due specifically to hard panniers.

  2. I have never seen (or had) this happen.

Multiple votes are allowed.
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  1. DSM8

    DSM8 Where fun goes to die....

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    Me personally no, but while teaching someone to ride off road (and I TOLD him to do it without the panniers the first time) I got to witness first hand how he put a foot down and the pannier caught him in the back of the leg.

    Caused a huge bruise but due to being in sand his foot was able to be drug along instead of being planted in the ground.

    I wont say never run the hard bags but personally I would never run a set based on my experiences (off road that is).
    #41
  2. LuciferMutt

    LuciferMutt Rides slow bike slow

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    Actually they look like ass, but YMMV. :D
    #42
  3. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

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  4. FloorPoor

    FloorPoor Been here awhile

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    I think I would leave more than half of that shit home.
    #44
  5. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

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    Starting with that back breaker of a top box. :deal
    #45
  6. Laconic

    Laconic Hapless Rube

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    Ask fluteSONG.
    #46
  7. humvee

    humvee Long timer

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    Fully agree here. Every hit is different.

    I have Wolfman bags and Aerostich tank panniers. Deer strike on asphalt at 45mph, I slid on my right side with the bike down the road. The loaded soft bags kept the full weight of the KLR off my leg.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #47
  8. CoatsEast

    CoatsEast Been here awhile

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    Great thread. First. I'll admit. I'm a nOOb at riding a pig off road. I'm completely drawn to it tho-- something about a new gravel dirt road or stream crossing just draws me in! I know the bike is too big for this but wife,budget and no garage space nixed my idea to get a second bike in the 250-650 range.

    So my story. Was on the r1100GS with recently upgraded Hyperpro suspension hard parts and Karoo3s this weekend on some slippery and then rutted out dirt roads off some power lines. On my last run down a narrow trail/road with trees crowding in and no where to turn around. Started out innocent enough but when you can't turn around you keep going. Anyway made it down and figured a way to turn the beast around in the trees. On the way back I told my self to keep momentum and stay on the pegs!

    All good but towards the end with my confidence up it got squirrelly when the rut pattern changed going up a hill. A bit of brake with ABS off for the first time swung out the rear so a bit more or a slide than I'm used too) and a poorly timed foot stab to save it QUICKLY brought this issue into focus for me.

    My new size 12 TCX boots grabbed and quickly got trapped between the rut and my happy trails big aluminum box. I think it was about to snap (it was trapped and torquing quickly in an unnatural way) but I instinctively rotated out to free it. Bruised swollen and strained. I don't think it's fractured bit might be. The boots probably saved me from a break and the protection took half the hit and limited the rotation. But their bulky size also increases the likelihood Of them catching. GLAD I had the boots!

    So the plan?
    Short term.
    I will be working hard to turn offf any instincts to try to save it with my lower extremities and STAY ON THE PEGS!. They don't stand a chance against 600lbs of metal with all sorts of traps.

    Adjust the clutch and tune up the old R1100gs for better low speed crawling. Don't ever want to have to use the brake and need much better clutch control.

    I'm scheduled to take a two day big bike adventure riding class at the end of the month. Had this scheduled for six months. Can't get here soon enough! It's in Brevard NC starting the Sunday before Memorial Day. Look it up and join us! Www.motomark1.com

    Figure out a way to more quickly remove the happy trails boxes as the bolt on. I need storage Maybe a top box or soft bags. I do love having the locking boxes for whatever you need to bring home - beer etc

    Long term. 2nd bike that is about 250lbs lighter!


    That's my story. The picture doesn't tell the whole story but you can see where my left ankle got caught between my new beefy pegs and the box trap pannier! I'll spare you the picture of the ankle!

    Attached Files:

    #48
  9. Bloodmouse

    Bloodmouse Been here awhile

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    In my very limited experience this has also been the case. The cans make room for your leg to slip out rather than get pinned. I can see how the opposite could happen too though.
    #49
  10. Horton

    Horton Been here awhile

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    It happened to me last year in Yorkshire. I hit with the left side of the bike the road. The aluminium pannier was bent up to the topcase. without the pannier, I'll think my left foot staeyd in Yorkshire.
    #50
  11. aldend123

    aldend123 Long timer

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    What about riding while standing? I feel like that forces you to keep the feet on the pegs until the last moment, and when you do stick a leg out, I think it'd be easier to be sure you're out far enough to clear the case.

    As for the crash itself, looks like you might have gotten crossed up in the rut? This was going uphill right? Having one wheel in a rut, and the other outside on slippery material can get ugly quickly. In my experience the second you see that's what's happening fully commit to getting both wheels in the rut. Even if that wasn't the line you wanted, it is now!
    #51
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  12. CoatsEast

    CoatsEast Been here awhile

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    Yeah. I meant standing on the pegs! I took some other photos of the road and tracks. It may be that I was on the right line heading to the right side but when I put my foot out and the boot grabbed and the pannier caught my ankle I may have instinctively tossed the bike to get the my foot the heck out. In other words I would have finished the run had I stayed on the pegs and off the brake. I think my clutch adjustment will help.

    I took a few more picks of the trail and tracks and will put on my PD hat and try to figure it out!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #52
  13. RedShark

    RedShark Long timer

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    20160708_182542.jpg Just a data point. I got rear-ended in traffic this past summer - booted off on July 1 by an Altima driver with his head up his ass on my commute to work. Riding a DL-650 ( Wee-Strom ) with the cheap small, rounded-off GIVI black plastic side and top cases.

    As my left leg was down ( I was full stopped ) that is where the bike caught me first (I went up and over the back, fortunately NOT staying with the bike which ended up impaled into the back of a pick-up ahead of me).

    Back of left leg was one big deep bruise from butt to knee, but it healed up eventually - I hate to think what a hard edge and reinforced corner might have done.
    #53
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  14. B.Curvin

    B.Curvin Feral Chia Tamer

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    I went down on black ice a few years ago (low side on the right when the front just went).

    [​IMG]

    Even with having Daytona Security Evo road race boots on at the time, my right foot rolled (twisted) between the bag and ground and I wound up with a broken ankle. This was on pavement at ~20mph.
    #54
  15. CharlestonADV

    CharlestonADV I do my own stunts!

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    I got my leg trapped under a HT aluminum pannier while dabbing a Versys through very deep gravel. Heavy bruising and swollen ankle but no fracture. Went with soft bags when I switched to a KLR.

    OP might want to change survey to include leg injuries.
    #55
    CoatsEast and docjekyll2002 like this.
  16. basketcase

    basketcase lifelong reject fixer

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    Your poll needs another option: "I have learned without injury not to hang my leg on the hard bags on my motorcycles."

    That is an option I would choose, because I have come close on two occasions to pinning my left leg.

    It can happen, has happened, and could easily result in a catastrophic injury.
    #56
  17. Kommando

    Kommando Long timer

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    I like soft bags on the sides...Soft panniers and tank panniers work great for me with an expandable tankbag and a big topcase (Givi E45 or E55). Lock up everything in soft bags with Pacsafe mesh. The topcase works great for stuff that needs protection in a fall. I also strap a rolled-up PacSafe 80L stuffsack in front of my topcase. All of our riding gear fits in this, including helmets, if we want to walk around in shorts, t-shirts, and comfy footwear.
    #57
  18. GreyThumper

    GreyThumper Been here awhile

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    Honestly, I've never experienced or even heard of someone getting their legs injured from hard (especially metal) panniers. However, I still wouldn't run hard cases off road. There's the possibility of getting injury of course, but in addition, I feel that soft cases are more secure (in terms of connection to the bike; I've seen hard cases detach on especially rough roads), more easily repaired, more likely to retain a waterproof seal, plus are generally lighter. I only use hard cases when touring and leaving the bike to check out sites, just because hard cases are lockable.
    #58
  19. MatBirch

    MatBirch Been here awhile

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    I had Jesses on my f650, and got caught only once. Crash came hard and fast. I did not put a foot down and get it caught, but as I fell, it just got tangled up. Ended up with a very bad sprain, and 8 weeks of rehab.
    I just spent an entire day test riding bikes. Several KLRs with large hard bags. The first thing I noticed is that they mount lower and much further forward than the Jesse did on my BMW. Even just at traffic signals, it was beating up my legs. I chose a bike that did not have them and will be going with soft on this bike.
    #59
  20. joso

    joso Avoiding4Wheelers

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    One can also get his leg stuck underneath fully loaded soft panniers.
    It just hurts less...
    #60