Crash experience with luggage?

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Chaan, Aug 25, 2020.

  1. Chaan

    Chaan n00b

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    Hi!
    Yesterday I picked up my second bike after much longing. :clap A GS 1200 Rallye. Before I been riding a KTM EXC 500 with a Giant Loop Mojave and a stuff sack on top. Both road and tight single trails. Been some tuple overs but no big crashes.

    Been longing for a set of hard panniers since it is a bit of hassle packing everything up. The BMW will probably no see the tightest trails but still should work for some wider trails occasionally. I'm starting to hesitate on the alu panniers in regards to personal safety (which is important to me).

    So wanted to ask:
    - Is it obvious that soft panniers, say Mosko Moto Backcountry is better in a crash then a pair of alu panniers? Or might them also save you depending on what happens?
    #1
  2. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    To my knowledge SW Motech EVO rack mount is the only AL panniers which are safe in crash they are designed to pop out. You will still feel it and you will need to hammer lock bracket back after going down or rattle will disintegrate rack.

    As for crashing many boxes will become non-watertight even after parking lot drop so this advantage goes away good luck
    #2
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  3. shrederscott

    shrederscott Long timer

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    Hi

    Been my impression that hard boxes are leg breakers if the box comes down on top of your leg ... soft luggage does not have that risk

    Soft is also a lot less weight

    Go soft - go light - go fast - go far

    Scott
    #3
  4. Migolito

    Migolito Prognosticator and MotoYogi

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    There are multiple thread/review re hard luggage and it's 'survivability' after a crash. The most obvious complaint is the Lid failure. Even IF it is hammered back into shape...the lid never fits the same again. IMO, hard luggage is a throwback to the past.
    Soft luggage: There are some top of the line companies that make excellent soft luggage "systems". I use Mosko Moto, however, there are many more. My basic panniers are 35L, however, I can easily add additional (and very secure) extra pouches and pockets which increase the organization and volume. They have been dropped on several occasions (never my fault :) and still look and work as new.

    Ive also got the MM Reckless 40. For a minimalist summer trip it is excellent. Fits extremely secure on the bike with zero movement. Perfect for my KTM500 (now sold). IF I was looking for a rackless setup on my KTM790R, I'd look at the 80 Reckless. However, again, there are MANY systems out there.
    IMO, if you are looking at single track or narrow stuff, look at Rackless systems.

    One more thing: Most folks don't like 'soft luggage' because it is not as organizable as a hard box. Thats not the soft luggages fault. Almost everything that goes into my panniers goes into a bag/cube/container. Each of which is clearly marked. I'm really supprised MM hasn't developed a set of 'packing cubes' for thier luggage.
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  5. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    Another advantage of soft luggage over hard is that it absorbs vibration. When I was in Central Asia I had 4 days in the row where I started day looking for welder.. that was the day I gave away my last Pelican case and got a waterproof duffel.

    The only true advantage of hard case is that you can lock valuables in.
    #5
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  6. pingvin

    pingvin Been here awhile

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    Crashed twice om gravel (still limping after the last one) with Enduristan Blizzard saddle bags but can hardly see a mark and the luggage didn't even shift, very impressed.

    Second the pack cube comment, Enduristan should definitly offer that as Blizzard has a funny shape, even emailed them about it but they didn't have any plans for that.
    #6
  7. Schlug

    Schlug JockeyfullofBourbon

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    put something on and stay in that position.
    Let me give you the honest world, logic based, fact founded , empirical evidence answer to this question.

    It depends.

    I have a set of Touratech Zega panniers (bought before the Zega Pros existed) and they have spent time between an 1150 GS and a F650 Dakar and a short time on a V-Strom DL1000 :puke1

    They literally saved my leg when a car pulled straight into the right side of my moto as I was slowing for a stop light, probably traveling at 15 or 20 MPH, the pillock pulled straight into me, hitting the front lower corner of the pannier, bashing it in and high-siding me. The car did not strike any part of me-- the bag took it all. This was back in 2014.

    And I bashed it back into shape, made some repairs, and still use them today. And some time with a hammer and some patience allowed me to make the lids fit well enough they do not leak water or dust. If you look at the WARPED thread from that year, I rode in torrential rain and 45 degree weather for a good part if it. No issues.

    This was the trip out to W.A.R.P.E.D. 2018:

    [​IMG]

    You can see all the damage that was pounded out on the lower front corner. Lid fits as seen. No rain, no dust entry.

    Here you can see the straps I leave on the lids. Those straps have about 20,000 miles on them I just leave them there. I strap my Tevas (which are also used as shower shoes) to them once I'm on the road so they can dry.

    [​IMG]
    (anyone recognise these farm roads in West Texas?)

    They are also used as carrying straps so I can do this:

    [​IMG]

    Those Zegas come off in about 30 seconds and the straps allow me to haul them inside the room. No worry about theft, etc. The lids lock for when you're leaving the bike during the daytime. The locks are not substantial enough in my opinion to leave overnight unless you are in a very nice area. But lets say you stop in Taos and decide to get the Missus a little something, say a dream catcher. It's nice to know you can lock your bags and walk away and no one is going to pry the locks open in broad daylight in touristy area.

    [​IMG]

    On this bike, they sit high and back. Not the best for offroad handling but you'd have to be a yoga genius to catch your feet under them.

    This is what the bags used to look like when they weren't so beat up and the bike only had 18,000 on it. (has nearly 40,000 on it now)

    [​IMG]

    These bags do not sit like this on the GS 1150:

    [​IMG]

    Note the bags are much further forward and much lower on the 1150. (same bike as below with an adventure tank installed)


    But then this happened on Pryor Mountain, near Lovell WY, where the wild mustang herds are. Neither we (two up) nor the bike suffered any damage. The crash bars and the bags took it all.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Belt and suspenders.


    I have-- repeat-- have-- nearly rolled over my ankle with those bags. Actually I think it was a combination of the rear passenger peg and the bag. But there was a moment when I dabbed while in a rut and my ankle was rolled over by the bike and kicked out the side at the last second. Could have ended terribly. I was in the middle of nowhere in Ontario and would have had to crawl out.

    I have been considering soft bags every since. At least on the smaller bike. The big bike hardly ever sees that sort of it imbecility any more as I have aged.

    I did duff the bike in this deep, shitey excuse for a trail on a BCDR and the pannier did just fine. Didn't tear off or cave in or anything.

    [​IMG]

    But i did think how much safer this slow speed, soft landing would have been with Mosko's. I probably wouldn't have even checked, but with the hard bags I did have to give the bike a good going over.

    As soon as I got the heavy bastard up, it sank into this slop over the top of the tire. And I rolled about 2" before I buried it. Had to lean it over, fill in the hole, and give it another shot.

    Also-- and someone else is going to have to answer this-- I wonder what the weight is like. Zegas panniers are very light, something like 11 pounds, IIRC. I do not know what Mosko's weigh, or Kriegas, etc. Racks are racks, and to take the sort of abuse we hand out, had better be sturdy. The Touratech racks are bomber.

    TLDR: protection is a big plus. And a possible big minus. Mounting them to the bike and loading, unloading them is a piece of piss and you will beat the britches off any soft bagger who cares to race. Bet large. Locking lids very nice depending on your locale.

    In summation: it depends. The bike, the rider, the type, distance, and lunacy of the ride.


    Can recommend the dry bag in lieu of a top box. Has about 50,000 miles on it, and has never leaked a drop and tough as an anvil-- cheap too. Found on sale at REI about 10 years ago.
    #7
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  8. pingvin

    pingvin Been here awhile

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    The Mosko Backcountry mentioned by the OP are quite heavy, 10lbs/each, which is one of several reasons I sold mine when went from KTM950 to KTM690. But you get many of the hard case advantages with Backcountry, like very easy taking off rack.

    If you really want to loose weight I think rackless is the way to go as you can ditch the rack as well. Though, there are lighter options than Mosko Backcountry (like Enduristan Monsoon Evo weighing 6lbs/each) if you want to keep the rack of course.
    #8
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  9. Wildmtn

    Wildmtn Still Lost

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    I ran aluminum boxes on my GSA before switching to Mosko. I got tired of pounding the boxes back into shape and so did others in camp. Yeah, the hard cases are easier to pack but if you take a spill they will require some more work. I also expect that the hard cases will protect items packed in them somewhat in the event of a drop. Soft vs. hard has been discussed a bunch regarding spills so I wont comment other than saying try not to be between the bike/bags/cases and the ground or objects regardless of the direction you go.
    #9
  10. mtn.moto.adv

    mtn.moto.adv Been here awhile

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    My Nelson Rigg saddlebags have little loops on the zippers so you can stick a little lock on it. Will at least keep the honest people out


    As far as hard vs soft luggage, I went with soft because I felt having large metal boxes right behind my legs could be a huge safety hazard in the event of an accident. I've dropped my dual sport dozens of times (all at slow speeds) with the soft bags and they've held up surprisingly well
    #10
  11. Migolito

    Migolito Prognosticator and MotoYogi

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    #11
  12. fprobst

    fprobst Adventurer

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    I have the lone rider motobags. Best of both worlds. They are rigid but collapse in a crash. They are made out of hypathalon. Very tough material. I used to run the bmw aluminum panniers. Never going back.
    #12
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  13. pingvin

    pingvin Been here awhile

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    Googled and those actually look really nice.
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  14. fprobst

    fprobst Adventurer

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    I just got the motobags this year. I only have 2 crashes on them with my ktm 1090. Probably around 20 mph on dirt not gravel. 0 damage. My riding buddy Just had a crash on our last trip. He was going around 20 mph on a gravel dirt logging road on his gs with aluminum bmw panniers. His mount and lock bent. The lid got bent. ( no longer wateroroof) and the aluminum bent up on the outside panel. Hard panniers are only waterproof until your first crash.

    Attached Files:

    #14
  15. Schlug

    Schlug JockeyfullofBourbon

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    put something on and stay in that position.
    My lived (and documented in my previous post) experience runs counter to yours. Maybe if you're ham-fisted with a mallet or don't care to take the time.

    This fact does not detract from the collapsing bags your run which do actually look like a interesting alternative. I wonder how they survive the get offs?

    edit: the videos are fascinating. I do not see the 45 litre bags on the website, though?
    #15
  16. fprobst

    fprobst Adventurer

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    I guess my riding buddies better start bringing mallets on their off road adventures.
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  17. Schlug

    Schlug JockeyfullofBourbon

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    You're being intentionally obtuse. You know what I mean. Your buddy can temp repairs while out for the couple days and make his permanent and very water proof fix at his leisure. From the looks of that white elephant, it won't be too long until you're back at the garage.








    :hide



    I said those LR bags looked nice, I'm sorry you were wrong about the other thing.
    #17
  18. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Smoove, Smoove like velvet.

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    There are bags and there are bags and there are bags.

    Hard luggage is all over the board.

    So the OEM Givi stuff on my Ducati crashes well in that its basically on a sheer system, if the panniers take a hard enough hit they detach. Good news is that it doesn't really effect the chassis (and yes I have tested this)....bad news is that you aren't able to remount that pannier without a bunch of bungy cords (which I have also tested) ....and yeah its one time use, Givi won't sell you new latches, and the mount is built into the sub-frame so you have to replace that as well.

    What I call mini-fridges I have seen that where a car ran a little wide and clipped a buddy with some big old Moteck bags, not only did it knock him off of the bike, it totaled the bike when it destroyed the subframe mounts on a KTM SMT

    Soft luggage is the easier to live with, and arguably the safest (for you) though zipper failure and waterproofness is something of an issue....in addition to security.


    I generally work with soft for offroad, hard for street...but that can vary there is no hard luggage for one of my street bikes so that has soft.
    #18
  19. Schlug

    Schlug JockeyfullofBourbon

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    The counter point being when the car struck me side on and would sent all its force into my femur. As for the bike, all that impact on my 1150 would have been taken by the bike instead. Instead, the contact points were handguard/crash bars/panniers. Didn't even break a turn signal.

    But you are correct. Hard bag/Soft bag question ends with a resounding 'It depends.' I think that is the only unarguable point in the entire thread. Besides Probst being obtuse.

    ( F=M * A if you're looking for it.)
    #19
  20. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Smoove, Smoove like velvet.

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    Indeed, counter point to that being issues like Baldy had where he washed the front while paddling and broke his tibia. But generally I don't chose luggage by the ability to deflect a vehicle, thats a fools bargain because every crash is different...

    My list is more like
    1) Enough capacity?
    2) easy on and off?
    3) can I lane split with it?
    .....and price in there somewhere
    #20