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Old 03-26-2013, 06:56 AM   #31
JustRon
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Based on stuff I've bought from EU... you don't pay VAT, but depending on the carrier, you may get a bill when the package is delivered, or a week later. I just got a bill from FedEx about 10 days after I received the shipment.
If you have a choice between shippers, I'm pretty sure DHL does not charge any extra fees, but they take longer than FedEx (and a few others).
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:17 AM   #32
bomber60015
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That matches my experience . . . . not VAT, but you may get caught on some import duties (which will almost certly be less than VAT).
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Old 03-26-2013, 08:19 AM   #33
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if you go on the ADVSPEC web site and orde r it shows in your basket with 2 prices - with and without VAT. when you fill the shipping for US it gives a price of 291.67 pounds ($442.38) + 38.23 pounds shipping DHL. Total comes to be $500.00 (today's exchange rates)
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Old 03-26-2013, 09:53 AM   #34
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I paid about $500 delivered last year. I paid no VAT Taxes and have not been surprised with any extra fees. Shipping was fast!

These soft panniers and Adventure Spec Service have both earned the Bigdon Seal of Approval ! whatever that's worth.
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Old 03-31-2013, 10:16 PM   #35
notrivia
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Bag It!

Hard shells are too heavy and wide. They increase transitions and turning radius. I want my bike to be lithe and "flickable'. But soft bags are universally, in my experience, made to a price point, as opposed to being developed to handle weight. All mine broke they're zippers and lower attachments carrying about 30 pounds per bag.
So Magadan, my questions: Are the bags bar-tacked for extra resiliency at load-bearing points?

Will the top straps delaminate?

Are they double-stiched?

Thankyou for your time!
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:59 AM   #36
Chris S
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... soft bags are universally, in my experience, made to a price point, as opposed to being developed to handle weight...
That is changing now, and about time too. But even then, for years the best available bags (Andy Strapz, Steel Pony, Ortlieb) used no zips as they are always a weak point.
Mags have no lower attachment which is a cop out. Their way is to strap it firmly round a rack, horizontally and vertically. Not so convenient IMO but lower attachments are easily added.

Quote:
Will the top straps delaminate?
Not sure there is anything to delaminate. The Mags use a 50mm strap on one bag with 'loop' stitched to both sides. On the other bag are two pairs of single sided 'hook', so the strap with loop gets gripped from both sides. I suppose the stitching for the velcro might eventually fray but would be easy to repair by hand.

Personally, I prefer regular adjustable buckles to throwover as you need to fine tune the tension on the road depending on load or terrain. That is awkward to do with double sided velcro straps and a full load (imagine trying to adjust a loaded backpack with velcro instead of adjustable buckles). But with Mags you can easily add 50mm buckles like these.

Mags are large capacity bags for long trips - if you fill them I doubt you will have a flickable bike. But securely fixed loads (hard, firm or soft baggage) attached low, forward and close to the bike (not like this) all helps, along with little or no weight on a tail rack.
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Old 04-14-2013, 08:50 PM   #37
mtncrawler
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Questions

Can anyone who owns these bags comment on how well they cinch down when carrying minimal loads? Would like to know if they'd work for a long weekend trip as well as multi-week/month, RTW jaunts.

Also anyone mount these up to the std Hepco Becker racks on a 650X (or similar bike)? Just wondering what mods I may be in for to adequately support and secure loaded bags.

Still on the fence, but I see A-S is getting new supply this week, so now may be the time. Also considering the Wolfman Rocky Mountains....

Thanks!
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Old 04-15-2013, 04:50 AM   #38
bigdon
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The Mag panniers work fine with a light load.
I use a RoxStrap tied to a Happy Trails Pannier Frame and go around the Mag Pannier. Cinch them up tight and the fit nicely loaded or empty. The really nice thing about these bags is the straps go behind the pockets. The front and rear pocket or usable no matter how full the bags are. The square pocket on the rear of the bags will hold lots of stuff.
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Old 04-15-2013, 11:29 AM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdon View Post
The Mag panniers work fine with a light load.
I use a RoxStrap tied to a Happy Trails Pannier Frame and go around the Mag Pannier. Cinch them up tight and the fit nicely loaded or empty. The really nice thing about these bags is the straps go behind the pockets. The front and rear pocket or usable no matter how full the bags are. The square pocket on the rear of the bags will hold lots of stuff.
Thanks for the feedback BD..
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Old 05-16-2013, 11:54 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigdon View Post
The square pocket on the rear of the bags will hold lots of stuff.
Just to follow up on that:

The big square rear pockets were specifically designed to hold a pair of these ... which means its a real easy way to add a gallon of fuel capacity to your bike:

http://www.touratech-usa.com/Store/P...-Fuel-Canister

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Old 05-16-2013, 01:03 PM   #41
DustiZoki
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This is my solution regarding hard and soft luggage as I am able to use them depending where I go....using existing racks for hard alu panniers I made my own soft waterproofed bags wit special hangers on them so I can hang them in about 5 min.




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Old 05-16-2013, 01:05 PM   #42
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Old 05-16-2013, 10:55 PM   #43
Colebatch
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris S View Post
Personally, I prefer regular adjustable buckles to throwover as you need to fine tune the tension on the road depending on load or terrain. That is awkward to do with double sided velcro straps and a full load (imagine trying to adjust a loaded backpack with velcro instead of adjustable buckles). But with Mags you can easily add 50mm buckles like these.
Thanks for your feedback Chris. Just found this thread, so getting around to addressing some of the questions in it ...

The decision making process in using velcro in the design rather than the buckles I had on my earlier Steel Ponys, was that with the Ponys the front buckle ended up under my ass, sandwiched between my ass and the seat all the time. It was uncomfortable and I felt it had to go. The only way to avoid that with buckles is to try to move the bags further back, and thats against the philosophy of the bags in the first place, which is to be able to get the weight so much more forward than hard luggage.

My experience having had 3 sets of the bags on test across Siberia last summer, was one the bags are fitted adjusted correctly, they never needed to be adjusted again on the trip, and they stayed permanently on the bikes, with only the inner bags ever coming out.

Certainly, if you were using the bags differently and preferred buckles, you would be able to fit buckles as you described.

A further issue I had experienced with buckles and this may be specific to my bike, was due to the bulk and inflexibility of the buckles, it was not possible to run them under the seat (as I can now in the pic below) as the buckles interfered with either the fuel pump under the seat or the subframe / rear plastic. Depending how tight you have it adjusted, the buckle could sit directly on the subframe arm and that would result in the buckle snapping pretty quickly. As can be seen below with the fully flexible velcro straps, that's not an issue anymore.

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Old 05-16-2013, 11:58 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ceri JC View Post
This seems a bit expensive for what it is though; for that money, you could get a Giant Loop Great Basin or a Kriega Overlander 30 (and a US-10 to go over the top to boost it to 40 litres) and have (a not inconsiderable pile of) change. Both of those products are real "cream of the crop" ones. I'd be really interested to hear: What does this offer over those that lead the OP to choose to spend their cash on these instead?

Not criticising your choice, just interested.
As the designer of the bags, let me address you questions:

Firstly, the Magadan bags fit about 35 litres per side (total of 70 litres). The Kriega 30 is 15 litres per side (30 litres in total). The Great Basin is 50 litres in total. So they are over twice the size of the Kriega bags and 40% more capacity than the Great Basin.

That means the bags are designed for a different purpose. At 15 litres a side, the Kriega set up is along with the GL Coyote, a short trip set up. Maybe a long day trip, maybe a weekender. See below, Kriega's pic of the bags in action ... on a two stroke enduro bike ... carrying enough for lunch and a few spares maybe. But you cant go 3 months across Siberia to Magadan with this much luggage.



I have similar sized GL Coyote on my Husaberg. Again, same deal. Great for a weekender. Its designed to be quick and easy to strap on to a bike and throw a small amount (30 litres) of stuff into. And thats what I use it for. Could I do any adventure travelling in remote areas with the Coyote for 3 months? No of course not, its not what it was designed for.

As for the Great Basin. GL upped the capacity to 50 litres, and retained the convenience of being able to throw the bag over the saddle. It's designed for convenience for the occasional traveller (no racks required) and the larger capacity means its suitable for trips of slightly longer duration. Maybe a 1-2 week trip in Australia or Morocco, or US off road. For me the bag compromises weight distribution for the convenience of mounting. The 50 litre capacity of a great basin is made up of approx 30 litres above seat level with two 10 litre bits coming down each side. See pic below:



So from that you can see the centre of mass for the Great Basin (GB) is going to be just ABOVE the rear seat level, and behind the rider.

Compare that with this:



Where the centre of mass of the bag is both further forward and about 45 cm (18 inches) lower. Thats a LOT lower.

Next question I have for the GB as it applies to my type of travel is that in my experience, 50 litres is not enough capacity for long distance adventuring, even for the lightest packers (in my experience camping gear alone is about 35 litres - tent, sleeping bag, air mattress).... see pics below of three different riders, three different bikes, on three different long distance adventures ...







Which means even as a light packer on a light bike, you will have to pack another bag or strap a fair bit of stuff to the outside of your GL bag as in the pics above. Since the GL GB bag occupies the seat area behind the rider, you cant put it there, you have to strap it so it both HIGHER and FURTHER BACK again. In both pics above, the riders have about an extra 20 litres of volume. Both have about 70 litres all up ... but compare that luggage weight distribution to this pic below: The GL setups have 50 litres above the seat level and 20 litres below seat level, whereas the Magadan bags carry all 70 litres below seat level. Thats a massive difference in weight distribution.



Terry (above) has about 70 litres of luggage, in the form of 35 litres per side, very low and well forward.

Thats what I mean when I say in my view the GL system compromises weight distribution for convenience of mounting. And the size is insufficient for transcontinental travel. You need additional bags and there is no good place to put them because the GB bag itself takes up the space immediately behind the rider.

For many people it will be good enough. But I wanted to put something together that wasnt just good enough but was as good as you can get it. My experience is that luggage weight lower and further forward makes a huge difference to the stability and handling of the bike. Getting the weight as low and as far forward as possible was the priority in considering the placement of the luggage.

Last summer we travelled with one pannier bag full of camping gear (one tent, one sleeping bag, one large air mattress and some plates, cups and utensils fitted neatly in one bag). The other pannier took clothes, spares, tools, etc.

As for being cream of the crop ... I didnt decide to build a bag cause I want to make a living out of selling bags. I just wanted to build the ultimate bags for my own adventures, (my own adventuring needs are extremely demanding and I found out the hard way that nothing else out there is up to the job) and the fact is others liked my ideas and wanted them and Adventure-Spec wanted to market them. So the bags were actually built to meet my needs - which are pretty demanding. After the materials we put into these bags (full 1000D Cordura construction, fully lined with Kevlar-Twaron, separate waterproof inner bags, best Delrin buckles we could source, from Sweden, triple stitched, made in Europe etc etc) ... I dont consider the others to be cream of the crop. If I thought they were well designed for my needs, or cream of the crop quality, then I would have used them and not built my own.

The other bags have no security features. They are not slash proof, they dont have the facility to be lockable. They dont use Kevlar / Twaron in their construction, let alone line the entire bags with it. The Magadan bags, in addition to their advanced material sandwich construction, offer for the first time ever in soft luggage, the ability to not only lock the bags shut, but to lock the bags to the bike. None of the other soft bags on the market have ANY security features at all. None of the others are slashproof, none of the others are lockable.

The whole idea behind these bags, were that as far as my needs go (and for sure, everyone has different needs) the bags are a zero compromise product. I wanted something that ticks all the boxes, not just some of the boxes. And I wanted something which didnt compromise in getting the weight as low and forward as is possible.

Like I said, they wont suit everyone. If you are only going to use them for occasional weekend rides once or twice a year and need some luggage to throwover a dirt bike, which normally has no luggage on it, then the GL product is designed for you. But if you are looking for RTW or transcontinental soft luggage - I obviously would recommend these. Cause as far as I am concerned they are by far the best thing on the market for that purpose. I would even go so far as to say they are the ONLY soft bags on the market designed for international or transcontinental adventure travel. Otherwise I wouldnt have built them. I am not in the luggage business. Its just a one off because there was nothing else on the market that did the job properly. There was nothing else on the market designed by someone who actually does transcontinental, developing world, off road riding, and understands the needs of that kind of riding.

I am not trying to sell you on this stuff, just explaining the logic and reasoning behind the bags and the features of the bags, and why I made them the way I did.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:31 AM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notrivia View Post
So Magadan, my questions: Are the bags bar-tacked for extra resiliency at load-bearing points?

Will the top straps delaminate?

Are they double-stiched?

Thankyou for your time!
The body of the bags are TRIPLE stitched.

There is additional stitching and riveting at load bearing points.

Where the straps attach to the bag is the key load bearing point and where I have had trouble with other bags in the past. I am pleased to say that after the very stressful and brutal ride last year (see the ride report thread) there was no problem with any of the load bearing points, or with the bags in general. They (along with the Excel A60 rims) were the most bulletproof bits of aftermarket gear I had on the bike.
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