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Old 03-31-2013, 10:46 PM   #16
Joined: Jun 2011
Location: Anywhere my tent fits!
Oddometer: 65

I bought a pair for my street bike and was never particularly happy with them. The attachment system goes under the bag and is a bit clumsy to use, the roll down feature seems to make the bags less small than you would like, and like every soft bag, they have inadequate attachments. These bags MUST have a round-the-bag strap, like all soft bags, or when heavily weighted they really move around too much.

I turned mine into tank panniers toward the end of their life. The plastic buckles had broken and the top velcro straps had delaminated. They were'nt reliable anymore. To the good, definitely wayerproof - but NO WAY are they worth the aerostich price! Look at the new Nelson-Riggs - probably the same problems, but reasonably priced.
Although I have no experience with it, all the good comments and original design features would compel me to buy the other bag you mentioned.
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:04 AM   #17
Anatomically Correct
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Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Chicago-ish
Oddometer: 14,862
We've been using a pauir of Ortliebs for 12 years or so, both on and off road . . . . . while cinching them down does take a moment, we've experienced no problems with the bags moving around without any added straps . . . . . .

As for price, they ain't cheap. But they do exactly what they say, and, work the same way today as they did the better part of 150K miles ago . . . . looked at in that manner, they are a bargain, IMO.

I don't think you can go wrong with this choice . . . . decide what is most important to you, and make your pick based on that.

I would not hesitate to replace my ortliebs wiht another pair, if the need arose.
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:47 AM   #18
alaskan dude OP
Joined: Nov 2012
Location: Anchorage, Alaska
Oddometer: 18
Soft luggage

Thanks guys for all the info, helped with my decision. I ended up getting the Great Basin bag. It arrived yesterday and I really like how heavy duty it is.

I have no problem having to seam seam the thread holes to make it waterproof, not that big a deal. Loved how bomber it is once attached to the bike. Also found a pair of used Vstrom eBay luggage racks for $50 to put on the bike to stop rubbing/scratching the paint.

Now all I need is the snow to melt.
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Old 04-02-2013, 10:28 PM   #19
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Joined: Jan 2007
Location: central komifornia
Oddometer: 1,151
Mounting the great basin bag-My Honda xr650r had no good place to put the mounting straps on.I got a piece of 3/4" strap iron and some chain from the local hardware store and welded the chain link to the strap iron.I used the sub frame bolt on the rh side and the chain roller bolt on the left to mount the new hold down links to.There is another welded piece where the old tail light used to be with a chain link.The bag can be installed or removed in under 1 minute.I put my tent and sleeping bag in another bag and use the bag straps to hold it on.Next problem-you need to buck up for good back packing gear or else you wont have any room left.Once the gl bag is loaded it is inconvienent to get anything out.

oldxr screwed with this post 04-02-2013 at 10:30 PM Reason: spelling
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Old 04-03-2013, 05:07 AM   #20
The Old Fart
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Joined: Aug 2007
Location: Spoke Can, WA
Oddometer: 2,111
Just my $0.02 worth here. I had the original Great Basin (in white no less). I really liked the way it strapped down to my '02 650 Dakar. Held a lot of 'stuff' and great cushioning too when I dropped the bike. But I didn't like the three straps on top. Getting in and out of it was a real hassle. So I sold it and bought some Happy Trail panniers. HT's are good and stout, but not as safe if you do a lot of double and single track riding. So I sold them too. Now I'm looking for soft luggage again. It's good to see and read about the new design and increased size for the Giant Loop Great Basin model. I also like the individual roll top design panniers, so will be following this thread to see where it goes.

Thanks for all the great information guys!
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Old 05-21-2013, 05:48 PM   #21
Ricky Rocket
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Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Lebanon, Connecticut -- Good 'ol US of A!
Oddometer: 52
Anybody ever consider the Wolfman Expedition bags with the hard mounts? I'm in the same boat with my XR650L. I like the idea of top-loaders and full-on waterproof. Would hate to be on the road/trail and have it start raining only to have to scramble to figure out how to waterproof the whole load with a trash bag. The Wolfman bags are 38 liters (for both), so it's under half the volume of the new GL Basin...but, I could strap a top-mounted dry bag also. And besides, they are top loaders and 100% waterproof. Hmmmm......
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Old 05-24-2013, 12:27 PM   #22
Brooklyn Bored
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Joined: Oct 2006
Location: BRC \ NYC
Oddometer: 7,928
Originally Posted by toowheels View Post

Ortliebs are good but as was mentioned floppy off-road and also may need some sort of support too. They are also not that durable in the event of a crash, or in my case a branch ripping one of them.

I couldn't disagree with you more. If your Ortliebs were floppy then you may not have secured them well or perhaps had some very heavy stuff in em.

I had a friend bring my bike home once, I followed behind on my other bike. The Ortlieb bags were STUFFED with a full faced helmet in each bag. That's pretty light so they should flop around easier then weighed down.

If you've ever ridden through NYC you would know we have potholes large enough to swallow volkswagons.

We hit every pot hole on the way home and rode through some cobble stone neighborhoods at 40mph.

The bags did not budge.

No rack, and this was on an FZ6.
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Old 05-24-2013, 03:58 PM   #23
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Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Portland...the newer one on the left side.
Oddometer: 3,752
Keep in mind you can add the waterproof stuff sacks to your Great Basic to make it 100% waterproof (Not sure the new one has that option but the old one did).

Yes, also consider the Wolfman set-up as well, but then you have a rack to deal with.

If you go with a great basin, make sure you have a tank bag to work out of for daily stuff. Getting in and out of GL bag is PITA. Great for setting up camp, not so good for tyring to find your camera. They also have some nice soft panniers now to look into. They are damn pricey, but look pretty good.

I've always liked those Ortliebs saddlebags, but have no experience with them. I do have a couple of their "Rack Packs" which are their roll top dry duffel bags, and am a big fan of them.
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