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Old 09-12-2006, 06:55 AM   #1
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Joined: Nov 2005
Location: Blount Springs, AL
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KLR and Ammo Can Pannier Mounts

I'm about ready to buy a KLR and plan to use ammo cans for rear panniers.

I have a 12GS that's getting way too many miles on it (25K in 11 months) and want the bike for my monthly shorter, in-state trips on which I do a monthly magazine piece with photos for an in-state magazine. This means I need to carry a DSLR camera and several lenses, plus sometimes a minimal camping kit.

My question is what options do I have for mounting the ammo cans?

I've seen some photos somewhere with Happy Trails and similar mounts converted for use with the ammo cans, but I'm wondering if someone has a cheaper homemade option that works about as well. I'm pretty handy with tools so this would be a possibility.

I'd prefer a mounting system with quick release, but if not that'd be okay too as on these trips when I stop I usually carry the camera stuff with me when off the bike.

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Old 09-12-2006, 06:59 AM   #2
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Joined: Apr 2005
Location: Not yet far enough away from town
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If you're looking to carry a camera safely, I'd look into a Pelican case - and then drill out bolt holes and screw it right onto the current threaded holes on the KLR's luggage rack.

Sorry I can't help on the ammo/panniers.
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Old 09-12-2006, 07:04 AM   #3
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Joined: Mar 2006
Location: Kansas City
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I would say that when you mount up the ammo cans, you will start to think it is too heavy or undersuspended. You will at about 40 lbs just with the cans. They would be rugged, but you might want to check out something like the Pelican or Mermite cans. Both are durable and cheap. Also, getting a set of Eagle Mike's RL-2 raising links will help with the load (they really don't raise the bike much, but really help when riding with a load).

As far as mounts, I have the Happy-Trail ones (SU Rack) and I can definitely say that the cost is worth it. It would be very hard to make something with even close to the features that those have in terms of design and quality. It can be done, it just depends on how your budget or if you just prefer to do it yourself.
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Old 09-12-2006, 07:49 AM   #4
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Joined: Sep 2005
Location: Highlands Ranch, CO
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You might look into the Pelican cases and mounting system by Adventurepipe (advrider vendor) and their website Seems to get some great reviews. If I could afford it, this is the way I would go.
Adventure is where you find it, any place, every place, except at home in the rocking chair. - Wally Byam - founder of Airstream

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Old 09-12-2006, 07:57 AM   #5
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Joined: Jun 2006
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
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I really don't know much about luggage racks on the KLR, but here's a shot of a KLR with ammo canisters taken at a recent ride:

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Old 09-12-2006, 10:27 AM   #6
just a yobbo from oz
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Joined: May 2006
Location: Albury N.S.W.
Oddometer: 1,913
i looked at ammo cans but too heavy

i got some cases from in Spokane(rosalia) they are great ,she had a couple of sets there that had sone cracked welds that were going real cheap if you ring her and ask tell her the aussie guy that came there talked to her about them, you could easily fix them or just get some folds of aluminum wrap the corners and rivet them (strong then) but ammo cans are super heavy and don't hold that much
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Old 09-12-2006, 12:03 PM   #7
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Joined: Aug 2002
Location: Toronto, ON
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Are those alum panniers water tight?
They sure look good
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Old 09-12-2006, 03:44 PM   #8
just a yobbo from oz
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Joined: May 2006
Location: Albury N.S.W.
Oddometer: 1,913
i am not sure yet

i have not really had them in the rain but they have beem sitting on my bike here in my friends back garden for nearly a week with the sprinkler running on it and seem ok but that aint doing highway speed with a down pour ,they have a fairly substantial seal on them ,they may not be jesse quality but they aint jesse price either, and way better than my wolfman bags
cheers david
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