Tool Tube mounted on DL 650 Caribou Racks

Discussion in 'Land of the Rising Sun: ADV Bikes from Japan' started by Jamie Z, Jan 12, 2008.

  1. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z Long timer

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    I've had a couple of inquiries about the tool tube I've added to my V-Strom. Although I didn't take (m)any pictures during construction, I've taken some pictures and measurements so that it might help someone else build something similar.

    This isn't step-by-step instructions. The parts list isn't 100% detailed. You're expected to have some mechanical ability. That said, with my description and pictures, however, you should be able to make your own without too much trouble, and I'm always willing to answer some questions.

    My setup: I've got a 2005 DL650 with the Caribou luggage system.

    [​IMG]

    General parts you'll need (size of nuts and bolts were estimated several months after construction):

    17" length of 4" Schedule 40 PVC pipe
    4" PVC end cap
    4" PVC threaded cleanout and threaded plug
    PVC cement
    15" length of 1"x3/16" steel bar (or similer dimensions)
    2 M10x25 bolts and nuts
    2 M8x30 bolts and nuts
    2 M8x15 bolts and nuts
    6 M8 standard washers
    2 M10 fender washers

    [​IMG]
    end cap

    [​IMG]
    cleanout and threaded plug

    Start with the Schedule 40 PVC pipe. Cut a 14" length, which I found is about the longest you can make it without it extending beyond the exhaust on the other side.

    Cut a 2" length from the remaining PVC. Now cut that in half so you're left with two C-shaped sections. You're only going to use one.

    The C-shaped PVC section will be used as a spacer. Attach it to roughly the center (the exact dimension isn't vital) of your 14" tube with the two M8x15 bolts, nuts, and four washers. I put the bolt head inside to give more clearance inside the tube, and then ground the bolt end to be flush with the nut on the outside.

    [​IMG]

    Using the PVC cement, attach the end cap and the cleanout to the tube. Make sure you get them on all the way. You might have to tap with a rubber mallet.

    Now, lets go to the bike while the cement dries.

    Using the two M8x30 bolts and nuts, attach the 15" steel bar to the inside of the luggage rack, roughly coinciding with the angle of the exhaust on the opposite side. (I merely eye-balled mine.) For reference, my rear hole is 4 3/8" from the top of the rack, and the front hole is 1" below the corner of the bend in the rack.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    In the above pic, note that the rear bolt doesn't have much clearance. Be sure you measure and get the right length bolts. And don't overtighten the bolts which go through the rack, otherwise you'll squeeze the rack tubing.

    You can clean up the ends of the steel bar by cutting them at the same angle as the rack.

    Now that you have the tool tube mostly complete, and the bar mounted on the bike, we can drill the mounting holes. The exact placement of the holes isn't important, but for reference, my holes are 5 1/8" and 10 7/8" from the front of the rack.

    [​IMG]

    After I drilled my holes, I ground a flat edge on tube where it'll mate with the steel bar.

    Make sure to leave a little bit of clearance between the front of the tool tube and the bodywork of the motorcycle.

    [​IMG]

    With the mounting holes drilled, use the M10x25 bolts, put the bolt heads and fender washers inside the tube, and tighten the bolts about as hard as you can turn them. Here's what it'll look like inside:

    [​IMG]

    Here's when it's done:

    [​IMG]

    And here's what you can fit inside:

    [​IMG]

    Comments? Questions?

    Jamie
    #1
  2. mr moto

    mr moto Been here awhile

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    thank,s for posting up the details on how you made this . :clap neat job and really useful too . i will be ordering a set of caribou cases for my own big trip later this year on my wee strom . scotland to egypt and back ,and this will make a very useful addition to my set up . thank,s .
    #2
  3. Valleyrider

    Valleyrider I Survived The '60s

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    Same idea, different approach... made my brackets from square tube. The tube not only holds my tool roll, but on the Alaska trip this past July, it contained a partial roll of toilet paper for those "Just In Case" occasions!
    Nice job Jamie!
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    #3
  4. Valleyrider

    Valleyrider I Survived The '60s

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    A little bit better shot of the final product.
    [​IMG]
    #4
  5. Dolly Sod

    Dolly Sod I want to do right, but not right now

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    Both of those rolls look very nice.. You've both given me something to think about!
    #5
  6. Crusier Dude

    Crusier Dude pavement inspecter

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    Hello Jamie,

    I have GIVI hard bags on my V Strom so here is what I ended up doing. I have to post one picture at a time as I don't have any other account.

    I am a machinist/model maker and I was able to machine a FALSE END cap that looks like the other exhaust cap. I will show you how I ended up mounting mine.

    Great pictures, and I really like your report.

    Attached Files:

    #6
  7. Crusier Dude

    Crusier Dude pavement inspecter

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    here is another picture showing how i mounted the tube to the bike.

    I was able to get mine right on the same heigth as the original exhaust. I used a level to take my measurements then I machined my parts from Stainless steel. I used .075 thick Stainless steel form my brackets that I clamped around the tube. I didn't have to drill any holes and I used the exisiting screw on the back fender to mount the rear braket to.

    Attached Files:

    #7
  8. Crusier Dude

    Crusier Dude pavement inspecter

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    more pictures

    my tube is 17 inches long but i loose 1 1/2 inches for the end cap to screw into the cap.

    Attached Files:

    #8
  9. Crusier Dude

    Crusier Dude pavement inspecter

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    another angle,

    I am going to make a shield like the other side to make it look even more like a second exhaust.

    Attached Files:

    #9
  10. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z Long timer

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    When I first made my tube, I wasn't remotely interested in making it look like a false exhaust. In fact, I kinda thought people who did that were a little anal. I mean, it's an adventure tourer.

    But now that I've had my tube on my bike for a while, I'm reconsidering, and your pics make it look like a simple addition. All I'd have to do put an exhaust end on my threaded cap. Thanks for posting your pics.

    I'm interested in the fake exhaust because I've had a number of people come up and ask, "What's in there?" I guess I thought it was a little more inconspicuous than it is. The tool tube apparently stands out as a storage container of some sort. Sooner or later, someone might be tempted to take a look inside. I haven't had any trouble yet, but I'd hate to come out and see all my tools gone, even if they are cheapies.

    Jamie
    #10
  11. RoyB

    RoyB Dartmouth, Massacusetts

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  12. Kawidad

    Kawidad Long timer

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    Cool ideas guys. :thumb
    #12
  13. Night_Wolf

    Night_Wolf Long timer

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    Where did you purchase those clamps???

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  14. SeaFlea

    SeaFlea Adventurer

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    thx to JamieZ and CruiserDude and RoyB for the pics.

    i will definetly do something like that. the space is vacant and crys for some kind of storage, a tool kit is perfect.

    one thing, do you think the rack is weakened where the holes are drilled?

    i'm counting on the rack to provide some support when the bike hits the ground. what do you think?

    good rides.
    #14
  15. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z Long timer

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    This was a concern of mine. Ideally, I wanted to mount it without drilling any holes. It could be done, sure, but I couldn't figure anything out with the parts I had on hand.

    A few months ago, I was hit diagonally from the front on the tool-tube side of my bike by a driver backing up. The collision knocked the side case off the bike and pushed me and the bike over onto the ground.

    The lock bracket on the side case was bent pretty severely. The rack was tweaked just a little. The two welds on the front lightening bolt shaped bar cracked, but didn't break. I was able to hang the bag on the rack temporarily until I found a welding shop where a guy bent the rack back into shape, and rewelded the joints.

    Inspecting the damage, it was my opinion that the bar I added to mount the tool tube actually helped support the rack during the collision. The holes I drilled were fine. The bar helped the rack hold its shape, I think.

    You could drill smaller holes (Use M6 bolts), or use some sort of brackets to secure the bar, too.

    I've not dropped the bike on the tool tube side of the bike yet... but I'm confident that the holes don't adversely affect the integrity of the rack. Not enough to matter in a drop, at least.

    Jamie
    #15
  16. Crusier Dude

    Crusier Dude pavement inspecter

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    I made my own clamps. I have access to a metal bender/roller. Then I measured the distance between the two flaps that I welded at 90 degrees after I had the clamps formed to the size I wanted. I made my spacers a little shorter so when I tightened the mounting bolts the clamps would tighten around the PVC tubing.

    les
    #16
  17. Valleyrider

    Valleyrider I Survived The '60s

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    Check back to my post. Only one 1/4 hole drilled in the Caribou hardware. I talked to Roger before deciding to use this method. Roger felt it would not compromise the strength of the brackets. I had asked him about using a "Nut-zert". Roger felt that through bolting would have the least affect on the tubing.
    #17
  18. Night_Wolf

    Night_Wolf Long timer

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    Thanks for the info :thumb Any chance you'd be interested in making 8 more for sale. :hide

    #18
  19. jfman

    jfman Long timer

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    Old thread I know: I built something similar for my versys so I can carry my tent poles and some longer tools I use. I diduse a thicker kind of pipe.

    The only issue I have with mine is that the threaded cap at them end sometimes is very hard to get off.

    Run into this issue on your setup? any tips on making the threaded part easier to remove off and on? Filing down the thread some or lubing them with something maybe,,,?
    #19
  20. Jamie Z

    Jamie Z Long timer

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    Occasionally the cap is a little sticky, but it's never been so tight that I can't get it off with my hands.

    First suggestion: don't tighten it so much. :lol3

    Other people have told me that they've fashioned a tool of some sort that'll fit the cap. I've never had a need.

    Jamie
    #20