I need some advice on panniers - BMW F800 Riders Forum & Registry



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  1. #1

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    I'm looking to get a set of panniers. I've been looking at the "Holan special pannier kit" and the "Zega Pro's". Is there anyone out there that has had a chance to check out both? Whats the average weight of a 33L pannier? The Holan says 10LBS each, is that heavy or average? I like the look of both but I don't know anything about their mounting or security features, etc...

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    Quote Originally Posted by planethopper View Post
    I'm looking to get a set of panniers. I've been looking at the "Holan special pannier kit" and the "Zega Pro's". Is there anyone out there that has had a chance to check out both? Whats the average weight of a 33L pannier? The Holan says 10LBS each, is that heavy or average? I like the look of both but I don't know anything about their mounting or security features, etc...
    Get the Vario's They are made specifically for your Bike. Fit very well, expandable, And no ugly hard to install hardware. I mounted mine in forty five minutes. Unless you are Samson and out there killing rocks everyday or a very poor rider that continues to fall down, The vario's will serve you fine. Did I forget to mention the easy five second on and off, locks that will key to your key and lock to the bike.

    JACK

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    Jack,

    With respect, I think there will be a lot of opposing views to your recommendation.

    As may be seen in the Globe Riders F800GS video the BMW plastic bags will become damaged even from a parked tip over. I think a simple search of this and other comparable forums will bear out this claim.

    Aluminium panniers are heavier but a better bet in the rough GS environment. my 2c.

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    I'm also in the market for side panniers. Already have the Vario top case. Not interested in Vario side cases because I don't want to have to worry about tipping over with them, but also, with all the hardware included they are in the $1500 range, no? The top case isn't that much more than the nice aftermarket options, but you could save a lot on side panniers if you go aftermarket.

    Personally I'm looking hard at the Jesse products. Other than Holan's new (unproven) special panniers, they are the cheapest offering that has the exhaust cut-out (and no bothersome side-loading). And they seem pretty well-built.

  7. #5
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    I have the Givi E43 side cases. Ugly, but light, very sturdy and 43 liters each. The E43s have an extra door in the lid so you can access the contents easily on the bike. The lid is keyed and the top door is combination.

    Also below is a photo of the mount without the case attached but it only takes about 20-30 minutes to install these and I only have them on the bike when touring. I find the top case sufficient for day or weekend trips.

    -



    -



    -

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    Quote Originally Posted by replicant View Post
    I'm also in the market for side panniers. Already have the Vario top case. Not interested in Vario side cases because I don't want to have to worry about tipping over with them, but also, with all the hardware included they are in the $1500 range, no?
    Likewise I am in the market and if I were not questioning the durability of the BMW Vario side cases they would be on my bike now -- for the reasons stated - narrow when "compressed" so good for maneuvering in tight places / city driving / lane splitting (if you do that kinda thing), yet expandable, keyed to bike, very easy on-off, and mounting frames near invisible when bags are off (which for me would be most of the time).

    Price-wise most dealers are willing to cut some slack on these units ... I am sure that a set can be had for < $1100 including the locks and mounting frames. This puts them in the price range of most of the other options - and for example $100 - $200 less than the Jessies (10" / 8"). A new set sold on eBay a while back without locks & mounting frames for $550, so even adding in the frames (~$350?) and locks (~$50) at sticker price I think you would come out at less than $1000?

    But ... there's still the durability thing.... The 1200 Vario cases are very similar but have an aluminum trim panel that gets dinged up, but doesn't affect function. The F800/650GS cases don't have that ... I'm wondering of some of the damage reports are only cosmetic?
    Blue 2009 F650GS - H-B crash bars, TT luggage rack, Pelican top case, BMW Vario Panniers & bash plate, 20mm handlebar risers, LED voltmeter, Sargent seat, MudSling, a few other trinkets ... I may be just about at the end of the farkle train  

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    The Jesse's are solid and although my black ones are getting marked a bit but you can use a touch paint pen. In the end I actually think we will be adding a vinyl self adhesive protection especially where our dry bags touch the side and top boxes. Sort of rubs and scratches the boxes.They are really well made but not perfect like anything else. The mounts are sturdy and can be used as side crash bars if the panniers are off the bike.

    I am really satisfied with functionality of the Jesse boxes but if i did again I might have bought the Odyssey ones for that little more room and gone with Silver vs. Black. Only say that because like I said the black requires maintenance all ready but then again the silver probably would as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by planethopper View Post
    I'm looking to get a set of panniers. I've been looking at the "Holan special pannier kit" and the "Zega Pro's". Is there anyone out there that has had a chance to check out both? Whats the average weight of a 33L pannier? The Holan says 10LBS each, is that heavy or average? I like the look of both but I don't know anything about their mounting or security features, etc...

    You could take a look over at DualSport plus. (Stoney Creek, i believe) They have a few different types there so you could get a feel for them as you could pick them up and hold them.

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    Dualsport plus is where I buy most of my stuff, great place, good prices, and Les is very helpful. They don't have the Holan cases there, nobody is Canada does yet. I want looks, ease of use, durability, and functionality. The only read-up I can find on the Holans are on the Holan site. McDonalds says their food is healthy but we all know different, that's why I want a third and fourth party opinion. I am staying away from plastics and definitely going with aluminum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by snowprick View Post
    Jack,

    With respect, I think there will be a lot of opposing views to your recommendation.

    As may be seen in the Globe Riders F800GS video the BMW plastic bags will become damaged even from a parked tip over. I think a simple search of this and other comparable forums will bear out this claim.

    Aluminium panniers are heavier but a better bet in the rough GS environment. my 2c.
    As I said, unless you are out there trying to kill rocks every day the Vario's will serve you fine. The Jesse distributor is in my town and I took a good look at those also. They are nice but I have seen a lot of them all dented and scratched up and then they do not look so good. A new Vario bag can be had for $340 if you shop around. A new replacement Jesse is $600? I also bought the high end interior expandable BMW bags. Very over priced! $150 each. I did get 25% off and 20% off panniers.

    Total cost for Vario's including BMW inner bags was $1300. This also includes the top case overpriced liner.

    I do not do a lot of dirt roads anymore nor do 95% of GS riders. None of the BMW GS's 1200 800 or 650GST is suitable for enduro or OFFRAOD riding. True offroad is just that--there is no road, you choose your own road and make your own path. When the going really gets tough you need a stripped down "dirt bike". I raced enduros for twelve years and would never consider one of these bikes to do so. Not once did I ever see a BMW in a true enduro race. They are simply too heavy, too high and awkward. Trail riding and dirt roads are fine. A good rider should seldom fall on these and damage anything. The BMW's are plain and simply too tall (unless you have a 35" inseam) to do any extreme off roading.

    I am not saying this to sound smug, but only as advice from someone who has an awful lot of experiance. Give this a lot of thought when choosing a bike or equipment. Decide what kind of riding you will truely do and buy accordingly.

    Jack
    Last edited by jaherbst; 04-16-10 at 04:08 PM. Reason: additional info

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    The Givi's are under $700 for the two bags and the mounting hardware -

    And I made a mistake in my original post. They are E41s - 41 Liters each (not 43).

    http://www.twistedthrottle.com/trade...view/4505/138/

    http://www.twistedthrottle.com/trade/productview/37/69/
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    I had the Varios on my 03 F650GS. I didn't want them again on my F800GS. I went with the BMW Adventure cases. They are much more durable, they fit the bike very well, and are keyed to match the bike.

    The Varios are OK for a street bike, they were nice and slim when collapsed, fairly roomy expanded. Not at all durable though, they looked awful after a couple of bumps and had to be repaired to keep them usable when the mountings failed. The racks were not very robust either and easily bent out of place making the bags fit poorly; I had to weld in extra bracing to keep them solid. In the end, they were no bargain. Spend up front or spend later if you plan to be a bit rough with your bags.
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    After two sets (one on my R1200GS, and one on my F650GS Twin) I've come to the conclusion the Varios are crap. Sure, they're convenient and narrow, but they are way to fragile for realistic use. (not to mention expensive!) One tip over and the Varios snap right off of the mount.

    The E41's are a bit better due to the serviceable SW-Motech mount behind them.

    The Holan special system isn't out yet. They're actually on the way in (in limited numbers) and due to land in a week or two depending on customs clearance. Once they arrive, I'll post an in-depth pictorial. If they're anything like the regular Nomadas (which I installed on my personal F650GS Twin last week) they'll be a knockout.

    Regarding DualSport plus, I had a great conversation with the owner at the MOA last year. Were open to having him carry Holan items, and potentially more depending...
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    Quote Originally Posted by mcmxvivrs View Post
    I had the Varios on my 03 F650GS. I didn't want them again on my F800GS. I went with the BMW Adventure cases. They are much more durable, they fit the bike very well, and are keyed to match the bike.

    The Varios are OK for a street bike, they were nice and slim when collapsed, fairly roomy expanded. Not at all durable though, they looked awful after a couple of bumps and had to be repaired to keep them usable when the mountings failed. The racks were not very robust either and easily bent out of place making the bags fit poorly; I had to weld in extra bracing to keep them solid. In the end, they were no bargain. Spend up front or spend later if you plan to be a bit rough with your bags.
    Are the ADV cases the EXACT same as the GSA?

    Just curious as in that case all I would need is the mounting kit(s) and I could use the ones from our ADV when needed .

    Reiner

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    Is the pipe profile the only difference with the Holan special system? Are they going to offer a matching top case? What will the price be shipped to Ontario Canada? I have a 2010 F800GS.

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    Yes, yes, and no problem.

    The cases are actually up on HolanUSA.com now along with the *large* matching topcase. To get a price including shipping, add the item to your cart and enter your country and postal code on the following page.
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    They don't have any pics of the topcase yet. I'll wait untill they have them up. What is the difference between the mounting kit pro and the mounting kit rally (pro and brace) it's a $50 option.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushwhacker View Post
    The Givi's are under $700 for the two bags and the mounting hardware -

    And I made a mistake in my original post. They are E41s - 41 Liters each (not 43).
    Any reason you didn't get the E36 + E45 to have about the same width on both sides?

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    Quote Originally Posted by reinerka View Post
    Are the ADV cases the EXACT same as the GSA?

    Just curious as in that case all I would need is the mounting kit(s) and I could use the ones from our ADV when needed .

    Reiner
    No, the cutouts are different. Holan did have a set of racks that fit the 1200 adventure cases early on prior to BMW releasing the proper setup for the 800. If those are still available it would let you use your existing cases.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cug View Post
    Any reason you didn't get the E36 + E45 to have about the same width on both sides?
    I like the little top door on the E41s. It allows you to get into the bags without opening the lid.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob View Post
    After two sets (one on my R1200GS, and one on my F650GS Twin) I've come to the conclusion the Varios are crap. Sure, they're convenient and narrow, but they are way to fragile for realistic use. (not to mention expensive!) One tip over and the Varios snap right off of the mount.

    ...

    The Holan special system isn't out yet. They're actually on the way in (in limited numbers) and due to land in a week or two depending on customs clearance. Once they arrive, I'll post an in-depth pictorial. If they're anything like the regular Nomadas (which I installed on my personal F650GS Twin last week) they'll be a knockout.

    ......
    Hey Rob!
    Did you have the Varios where the mounting clip screwed on to the back of the bag with two screws and was adjustable? I was told by the dealer that the earlier design was one-piece and busted easily so was re-designed to be two pieces so that if it broke only the mounting piece had to be replaced ... and that (like Caribou) it was designed to be a break-away mount... any thoughts?

    On the Holan Specials - do you have widths on them?
    Will they mount to either the SW-M or HB frames or are they setup for only the Holan?

    THANKS!!!
    Jim
    Blue 2009 F650GS - H-B crash bars, TT luggage rack, Pelican top case, BMW Vario Panniers & bash plate, 20mm handlebar risers, LED voltmeter, Sargent seat, MudSling, a few other trinkets ... I may be just about at the end of the farkle train  

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    I ordered the BMW Adventure cases for the F800GS last week, should have them next week. I saw them on a bike in Atlanta, they look good, and are well made. ~$1500 if you know where to buy them. And they will key to the ignition.

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    I like the look of the BMW adventure cases, much nicer than the Vario's. Aren't they made by Touratech? Do you know what the weight of each case is?
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    They are at least developed by Touratech. Probably also made by them. Weight:

    Side cases: 12kg together

    Left Side Case: 5.8kg
    Right Side Case: 6.2kg

    Racks: unknown, estimate about 10kg overall, they are pretty solid, lots of tubes.

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    Oh, and I forgot: if somebody in the Bay Area is interested in a set - give me a shout. I have the cases, but haven't used them so far as a change in life has made longer tours pretty much impossible for the time being. Having them just sit in the garage makes no sense.

    Here are some older photos:

    http://gallery.me.com/cug#100149

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    Quote Originally Posted by planethopper View Post
    ... The Holan says 10LBS each, is that heavy or average?...
    The lightest aluminum panniers I'm aware of are the Moto-Sport panniers. They're made by using 1.5mm 6061 T6 hardened aluminum and are rivited to maintain the strength of the alloy. They're about 1/2 the thickness and 1/2 the weight of conventional welded aluminum panniers (welding weakens aluminum, so thicker material must be used).

    They have two models: 26L (6.5" wide) and 37L (9" wide).

    Here's a pic from the mspanniers.com website:


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    There are a lot of case to select chose from. I went thru the same process a few months ago. In the end I chose Jesse's Odysse. The driving reason for me were, ruggedness both cases and bike mounting frame, low center of gravity, and as narrow as possible. Jesse mounting frame is outstanding. It is very well designed to keep the case mounting narrow to the bike and very sturdy. The Jesse cases are designed to be as naarrow as possible, with form fitting of the cases on both sides of the bike to keep the overal width very narrow for the volume of the cases. I don't think any one else does this as well.
    I also like that I can move the case foward and back about 4 inches. Foward for solo riding , lower CG and back for more passenger room but with the cases some what cg behing the rear wheel axles ( most case mounted here).
    The only negative is the Jesse are a bit pricy....but so is BMW.

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    What I am noticing about our Jesse accessories is this....and I wrote Rick at Xplorermoto...

    while the panniers are powder coated the mount is not. same goes for their engine guard and skid plate. The bolts they supply I do not think are stainless steel....at least for the engine guard, they rust.

    I am really surprised that Jesse would "just paint" his mounts and other accessories that he has his name on....but in the end the luggage i think is really sturdy and great quality. I just think they skimped on the bolts, screws etc...and the quality of paint other than the luggage itself. I am looking forward to hearing what Rick has to say!

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    I do not know how to tell difference between powder coar and ordinary paint. I do not know if powder coat is better. I thought powder coat was a more efficient paint system that uses electro static effects to limit over spray, more enviromentally efficient. Manufacturing process related. Not sure it effects end paint product quality. In any case the mounting system paint looks fine to me. The bolts look like stainless but again I can not say for sure. I do know the BMW factory bolt for the muffler that I removed and replaced with a longer Jesse was not stainless and was significantly corroded. (bike had 200 miles on it). The Jesse replacement looked to be higher quality.

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    my dealer took the bolt out of the guard yesterday because I keep getting rust spots on my engine case...the bolt was rusted and the water coming out of the guards was rusty too....Powder coating is supposed to be harder....I think I am going to get Line X...the guys who spray bed liners to spray our guard and skid plate

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    used to know a metal fab works.
    Powder coat. The metal is charged with electricity the powder is then sprayed so it sticks onto the charged metal, all over including hard to see bits. The item is then baked to melt the paint and bond it. You get an epoxy hard finish.
    Wet paint. spray on, maybe you miss some bits, wait till the solvents evaporate.

  34. #32

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    The thing I don't like about the Jesse panniers is there's no way to tie or strap anything on top of them. Some other brands have handles to tie stuff on top. I think that's very important. I think the Jesse's are the number one panniers around here. I might try the Holans out, I just hope their read up is accurate and true. Now the question is 33L or 40L or 45L?
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  35. #33
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    for Jesse they sell lid loops or lid racks....the racks are for the Odyssey but i bet they would fit the Safari...the top box have loops at all four corners.

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    Sep 2005
    Online
    08-01-18
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    Motorcycle
    '90 K1
    Motorcycle
    '10 F800GS
    Quote Originally Posted by jrwooden View Post
    Hey Rob!
    Did you have the Varios where the mounting clip screwed on to the back of the bag with two screws and was adjustable? I was told by the dealer that the earlier design was one-piece and busted easily so was re-designed to be two pieces so that if it broke only the mounting piece had to be replaced ... and that (like Caribou) it was designed to be a break-away mount... any thoughts?

    On the Holan Specials - do you have widths on them?
    Will they mount to either the SW-M or HB frames or are they setup for only the Holan?

    THANKS!!!
    Jim
    Both of my sets were all one piece, and judging by the part numbers, I don't see any indication of a redesign. (BMW nearly always superceeds part numbers when doing something like that)

    No additional information on the Holan panniers yet.
    Forum Owner Emeritus

    Rob Werksman - Owner, Motorcycle Insight, LLC
    F800 Depot | S1000RR Depot | Adventure Motorcycle Depot | Twalcom USA
    North American Importer - Globescout, Twalcom, [email protected], Hornig, AC Schnitzer (Motorcycle) 

  37. #35
    Points: 25,403, Level: 100

    Real Name
    Jim
    Location
    Charlotte, NC, USA.
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    12 Hours Ago
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    2,163 / 0 / 166 / 204
    Motorcycle
    '09 F650GS (Twin)
    Thanks Rob!

    The P/N thing drives me crazy as well...

    If yours were all one piece, then apparently they have been redesigned since then ... the ones I saw at the dealer have this adjustable "clip" on the back
    (there are little molded teeth in the clip and the back of the case so the bracket can be moved in small increments to give better alignment).

    Also it looks like the clip is designed to be the "weak link" and break in a hard fall ... sacrificing the $33 bracket to save your $500 case... a good plan if it works...

    They are item #11 in this call-out....



    Thanks,
    Jim
    Blue 2009 F650GS - H-B crash bars, TT luggage rack, Pelican top case, BMW Vario Panniers & bash plate, 20mm handlebar risers, LED voltmeter, Sargent seat, MudSling, a few other trinkets ... I may be just about at the end of the farkle train  

  38. #36
    zaner32's Avatar
    Location
    Moncton, NB, Canada
    Joined
    Dec 2007
    Online
    01-25-15
    Posts
    81 / 0 / 7 / 2
    Just got my Denali Panniers last week. It was the best compromise for me as for volume, width, and price. Less than $900.00 Cdn delivered and mounting them wasn't a problem with a little persuasion for the right side mount. I bought them with black powder coat, pre-mounted, and with their bag-it system.

    Total width = 37 " Same width as bars.
    Total Volume = 38L (left) + 47.5L (Right) = 85.5L

    Got some ADV Rider + F800GSA steeckers on the way to complement the real estate on those boxes.

    I will have a set of soft Ortlieb bags to do weekend real off road rides.

    Don't mind the mess in the garage...

    Left side Clif cut from the front

    From the rear

    Open left side box


    Right side front

    Rear





  39. #37
    Kelsow's Avatar
    Real Name
    Friends call me Kelsow
    Location
    Halifax, Nova Scotia
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    Jul 2009
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    11-23-14
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    1,028 / 7 / 75 / 671
    Motorcycle
    '10 F800GS
    Nice! I can barely get into the garage with my setup.

  40. #38

    Real Name
    Sean K
    Location
    Hamilton Ontario, Canada
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    Apr 2010
    Online
    10-07-10
    Posts
    31 / 0 / 0 / 0
    Those are huge! I don't even thing I own enough stuff to fill them. I think I can get by with 33L ones.
    2010 BMW F800GS Lava Orange, 2010 Ducati 1098 Streetfighter S Black 

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