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Author Topic: Packing the Harley  (Read 2748 times)
ChrisandKristin
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« on: June 30, 2015, 03:16:49 AM »

 We already knew we liked the Tour-Pak on the Harley better than what we had with the Goldwings.  But we weren't sure about the saddle bags.  My wife spent most of the afternoon packing the bike for our summer trip and it turns out she prefers them to the Goldwing's bags.  They actually hold more stuff and still be able to put the lids on vs the Goldwing where we used to put stuff in there and then try to slam the side shut before it all fell out.  We tried several different saddlebag liners in the 'Wings and they were mostly bogus and in some ways worse than just stuffing things in the saddlebags in individual bags.  There's time you need certain things out of the saddle bags on the road and have to unload a bag liner then dig thru it to find it.  Then the bag liner changes shape a bit after pulling it out and can't get the side of the saddlebag shut.  We swore at those things more than once.

The Harley's bags are deeper, longer and with the top lid it was easy to arrange things in there in an orderly fashion to get at the stuff we need all the time by putting that on the upper shelf in the right bag.  Then put some of the less often used stuff in the bottom.  Nothing falls out on the ground, simply put the lid on and lock it with no fuss.

It's kind of like trying to load a bunch of stuff in a box with it laying on its side vs the opening being up.  Which way makes more sense?  That's why the Harley's bags were easier to load and arrange stuff in there.

She packed what we need, paying attention to the placarded weight limits for the bags and Tour-Pak and we got some room left over for the first time ever, departing on a trip!

Our Harley is tuned up and ready to roll.  She's got the re-jetted stock carb on it - the S&S carb I bought and tried ran the engine way too rich.  While the S&S carb bumped both power and torque on the dyno it would've hurt gas mileage and the bike will run 220-230 miles, with plenty of reserve, between fillups with the stock carb.  The stock carb has been re-jetted to run the engine just a tad richer on the bottom end and a tad leaner on the top end.  We'll be in the mountains over 7,000 feet on part of our trip and we'll switch to the "mountain grade" fuel with ethanol in it to compensate for what otherwise would be an overly rich mixture for a carburetted engine.  We've been otherwise burning 91 octane non-ethanol fuel in it.

I had the bike on my bike lift yesterday and repacked both the front and rear wheel bearings.  They didn't need it, but didn't know that until I took it apart because I didn't know the last time it had been done before we bought the bike.  While I had the front wheel off yesterday I pulled the forks and changed fork oil too.  Didn't need that either as both forks were hospital room clean inside.  But again, didn't know the last time it had been done.

Engine, primary and transmission all have fresh oil changes.  No need to worry about changing rear end oil in a Harley.  She'll get 16,000 miles in the next month but we'll do an oil change at whatever H-D dealership we find in Canada, and again in Alaska since we plan on being there for a week and riding up to Denali from North Pole.

We're leaving on Thursday for our daughter's place in South Carolina and we'll be there for the 4th.  Then we're leaving from there for Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia to visit some friends we haven't seen since the 2007 IBR.  Then going to Alaska to see my wife's sister there.  Then we'll be back in Sturgis for the 75th anniversary of the Black Hills Classic around the first week of August.
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bagga
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« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2015, 03:31:45 AM »

have fun.
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« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2015, 01:27:01 PM »

Have a fun time and safe trip!
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bagga
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« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2015, 01:27:25 PM »

when we go somewhere mrs. bagga usually will pack like we're taking the car. she has learned to pack lighter but sometimes she'll still have stuff packed that really isn't necessary.
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ChrisandKristin
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« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2015, 04:22:52 PM »

when we go somewhere mrs. bagga usually will pack like we're taking the car. she has learned to pack lighter but sometimes she'll still have stuff packed that really isn't necessary.

We got 34 years experience with long distance two-up touring, so my wife knows what to pack.  But we do take our camping gear because we stay in (usually, if we can find them) KOA campgrounds at night instead of motels.  So that means packing tent, air mattress, two light sleeping bags, and our own towels for showers.  But all that stuff is pretty compact and the tent is in a weather-proof bag and fits nicely on the luggage rack on the Tour-Pak.

Otherwise she packs one change of clothes, pair of tennis shoes for each of us, and basic toiletry necessities.  The liners out of our riding jackets are rolled up tight and packed with the tennis shoes on the top shelf in the right saddlebag because we change to the tennis shoes when we stop for the day.  And the liners go in and out of our jackets, depending on the weather.  We both wear leather pants when riding that are treated to repel water, and our jackets are 100% waterproof, so we don't need separate rain gear.  If we get wet we change to our dry clothes when we stop for the day and let our leathers dry out and re-oil them.

We've had our Harley-Davidson riding jackets and leather pants for probably 15 years now.  Aerostich up in Duluth is pretty popular with a lot of touring riders.  But we've always been happy with the H-D gear because they're leather instead of synthetic material and we've found that leather has several advantages for comfort in all-weather riding and being able to "breathe" - and in longevity if you take care of them.  We tried the Aerostich gear many years ago when it became popular with LD riders but never liked it because it felt too bulky.  Our leathers fit like custom racing leathers, and that's what we like.  But they cost twice as much as the Aerostich gear when we bought them.

When the big rain hits and you see other riders stopping under overpasses and whatnot to put on rain gear and change from do-rags to helmets, we're the folks that ride right by and wave at 'em because we don't need to change gear.

From my standpoint, I don't pack the cover for the bike because it's too bulky.  If it rains the bike usually needs washed anyway after several days on the road.  Otherwise I got our emergency belt kit, tire plug and patch kit and spoon kit to dismount a tire, a small screw type scissor jack, 12V blower for inflating our air mattress, 12v air compressor, and basic tool kit sufficient to remove either the front or rear wheel.  I've never had a flat yet that I couldn't plug and air back up on the road to get someplace where I could pull the wheel and dismount and patch it from the inside later.  One of the beauties of tubeless tires.
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bagga
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« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2015, 04:54:22 PM »

i have a "cycle champ" HD jacket that i bought about 20 years ago. it always was real soft and pliable so it was comfortable right from the start. it doesn't have any of the graphics like so many jackets they now sell, the only thing on it is a harley "oak leaf logo" patch sewn to the left upper sleeve.
 i don't carry a cover either, i do have a piece of "visqueen" a little bigger than the seat that i'll bunji strap to the seat. if it rains i know the seat will be dry. as for washing, i never do it on the road.
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bagga
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« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2015, 04:58:02 PM »



typical bagga riding gear on the shore of gitche gumee
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ChrisandKristin
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« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2015, 05:22:21 PM »

i have a "cycle champ" HD jacket that i bought about 20 years ago. it always was real soft and pliable so it was comfortable right from the start. it doesn't have any of the graphics like so many jackets they now sell, the only thing on it is a harley "oak leaf logo" patch sewn to the left upper sleeve.
 i don't carry a cover either, i do have a piece of "visqueen" a little bigger than the seat that i'll bunji strap to the seat. if it rains i know the seat will be dry. as for washing, i never do it on the road.

Our jackets just say "Harley-Davidson" across the back and that's it.  They have vents in the back that are closed off with the liner zipped in.  They were about $650 apiece 15 years ago and don't know how much they go for today.  We got full leather pants instead of chaps and those are really comfortable.  They got zip tight bottoms so they fit tight around the boot uppers and two belt loop snaps on the back that attach to the jacket rear tail to keep everything in place.  Seems to me the pants were about $475 back then.

With the leather seat on our bike I'll probably just bungee a garbage sack over it to keep the rain or dew off when the bike is parked.  Then use the sack to clean up our campsite when we leave in the morning and put it in the garbage can.  Dual-use disposable seat cover.  LOL!
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bagga
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« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2015, 05:26:34 PM »

the visqueen i use is a piece about 2'X3'. i can also use it to cover up the stuff that's attached to the tour pac luggage rack.
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