Installing soft saddlebags - is radiated exhaust heat a problem?

Discussion in 'Gear & Accessories' started by irishrOy, Nov 25, 2017.

  1. irishrOy

    irishrOy New Member

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    Hey guys!

    Sorry if this has already been asked, but:
    Now that I got some time to tinker around and can't really ride the VFR, I'm trying to install soft saddle-bags.
    (I still have them from my Honda Shadow. I know hard cases might be more useful, but a) I don't want to pay that much for hard-case-mounts and mounting-plates + the cases themselves and b) the saddlebags have worked so well for me, I'd like to just keep them).

    They look more or less like this:
    [​IMG]

    My plan is to put/hide the strips under the pillion-seat-cover/hump, which I've already tested and it works just fine.

    But the thing is: The saddlebags are touching the heatshields of the exhaust always, all the time.
    So:
    Can anyone of you maybe help me out and tell me, if, the exhaust-heat-shields get how, and if they do, how hot they get over the time?

    How have you guys installed your puggage?

    Do you focus on topcases, side-cases or soft saddlebags?

    Thanks in advance and have a good one!
     
  2. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Member

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    I rode for several years with soft bags on my 6th gen. The heat shield were more than enough to prevent damage caused by exhaust heat in my case. These were used on some very long rides, a couple of which were 1000 miles in a day. So long as you don't just leave the bike sitting and idling without moving, but then who does that? he air movement between the muffler and the heat shield appears to be plenty to keep the heat off your bags. Then again, I likely would not be putting popsicles in there.

     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2017
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  3. irishrOy

    irishrOy New Member

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    thanks for the quick and thorough response, including the nice picture!

    Okydoke, then I guess I'll fit them under the pillion-seat-cover and have 'em touch the heatshields.
     
  4. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Member

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    I posted the photo to show how heavily it can be loaded. On the 6th gen, the pipes are both sides and up high. Looks like you have an 8th Gen? The single muffler should be fairly low then and there is likely not be contact between the pipes and bags then.

    I have since bought a set of OEM hard bags for mine. I really like them but there are pros and cons to both. The soft bags are more packable because the sides have some give to them. I gave away my soft bags. I kept the top bag though and sometimes use that in conjunction with the hard side bags.
     
  5. irishrOy

    irishrOy New Member

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    Ah, the picture is just a random picture of the saddlebags I have, not the proper motorcycle ;)

    [​IMG]

    I got a "normal" 6th Gen like most VFR-riders have :D

    Your VFR looks really packed, and on top of that the tank-bag, backpack and the small top bag.

    I assume the red shapes and the flames are "custom" stickers or paint-jobs?
     
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  6. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Member

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    Yes. They are one offs, 3M reflective wrap. My concept and done by one of those shops that do wraps for commercial vehicles.

    I also have photos of a set up done by a long ago member here, LG001 I think his handle was. He rigged up some aluminum electrical tubing that kept soft bags even further away from the pipes. It looked like a relatively simple thing to build if you know the ins and outs of pipe bending with a manual hand held pipe bender. (BTW. When I was in trade school for electrical, they called those tools a hickey). But as it turns out, it was not needed. Like I said, I have done several very long and hard rides with mine without issue. The photo I posted was the beginning of a tour that took me close to 8000 miles in five weeks. I had everything I needed packed in there including tents and sleeping bags. I also carried clothing for three different seasons. That was taken in early April where it can still be quite wet and cool where I live, but I was headed to California where it would be warm and dry
     
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  7. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Member

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    Also to consider. Where ever any strap meet with the paint on the bike, or wherever the bags themselves meet with the paint, you have to watch closely for sand and debris getting between the bags and the paint. If that happens, it really makes a mess to the painted surface.

    If you look at mine, you can see I kept the seat cowl on. Look close and you will see yellow cloth between the truck bag and the seat cowl. That is that tech cloth stuff for washing and polishing cars and other things. Nice and gentle cloth. Where ever a strap met with the paint on the rear cowl, I put a dry sponge between the strap and the paint. Better yet, and I know it will look ugly, I think I would get some Gorilla tape and put tape on the spots where the straps would contact the paint
     
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  8. irishrOy

    irishrOy New Member

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    Okydoky, I'll try to find and check out what setup LG001 had, that sounds cool. I personally am not that "handy" when it comes to whipping up stuff and seld-made construction, but I got a family-member who's very talended, maybe he can help me out a bit with bending the needed pipes :D

    Also, you're the one skimad4x4 told me about, who kept a sheet on how many people dropped their bikes or had a laydown, is that true?
     
  9. irishrOy

    irishrOy New Member

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    Man, that is excellent advice!

    I didn't have to experience this, yet.
    But I have looked in getting a "tank-condom" or tank-leather-protector that you put around the tank, but what made me hesitate was the fact that people sais these things to more harm than good. If only a small rock get's inside, it'll scratch up all the paint and the metal.

    I think I can see the yellow cloth you mean.

    Good tip, thanks a lot! Over here micro-fiber cloths are used often, I think I'll try to fit such a rag under the cowl!

    Nicely fitted gorilla-tape doesn't look bad at all! You just have to be careful not to trap any air and slowly put the tape on! Also, carefully cut out the length you need so you don't have to cut any overhanging stuff off after you've already applied a part of the tape-strip.
    I can't tell you how much stuff I've fixed with thin stripes of gorilla-tape in my kitched, and it all looks (more or less) professional :D
     
  10. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Member

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    Guilty as charged. I will search for the thread and post it up. I don't think LG001 posted here his set up. He and I used to converse back and forth through PM but I have not heard form him for years. I should have photos on my desk top computer and will look for them later and post them here for
    r send them to you later today hopefully. I don't think you need them. But if it will give you comfort having that little extra protection from the heat, by all means have someone put it together for you. I think he used about i length of pipe. (It i called EMT for Electrical Metallic Tubing) Get the aluminum stuff and not the rigid. Rigid is very strong and heavy. I would be quite hard to form in the manner LG001 did if you can even do that.
     
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  11. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Member

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    http://vfrworld.com/threads/you-dropped-it-how-many-time.44298/
     
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  12. irishrOy

    irishrOy New Member

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    No worries, man! Please don't feel stressed because of me! :D

    Thanks for the claricifaction of the pipes' material, I'll have to go hardware-shopping sooner than later before christmas hits, so I'll see if I can pick up some tubing.

    (English is not my mother-tongue and in fact I'm from Germany, the "irish" in my name is just for fun. So I hope the "guilty as charged" wasn't meant in a negative way^^)
     
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  13. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Member

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    Not to worry. That is just a light hearted way of acknowledging something. Not negative at all. Some sarcasm in the English language can be difficult to really understand if English is your second language. My wife does not always get it when I make certain comments sarcastically. She also does not always get my sense of humour. Yet we have survived 31 years of marriage. Imagine that!
     
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  14. Lint

    Lint Member

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    I'm late to the party, but I've ridden across country with soft bags from Triumph resting on the exhaust heat shields of the 6th gen I used to own. Zero problems and that included riding through 110°F weather in the Mojave desert and sitting in road construction traffic in Arkansas, where my bike temp guage said the temp was 111°F. I couldn't shut it off, because we kept inching forward. No problems at all with the bags. I just about died though...

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. irishrOy

    irishrOy New Member

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    [​IMG]
    Thanks for the answer, man! Okay, if you and your saddlebags have survived a 111°F heat with not being able to get enough airflow going to cool anything, then I think I can survive our summer's too. (Though recently we cracked the 38°C/100°F this summer, if my memory serves correctly) :D
     
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  16. VFR4Lee

    VFR4Lee New Member

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    I have used stick on clearish plastic, I think intended for shelf liner. It sticks on over the parts of the body the bags will rub on to protect the paint. It is not super sticky and peels off easy after the trip.
     
  17. 34468 Randy

    34468 Randy Member

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    Now. There's a good idea. I like that.
     
  18. in10ct

    in10ct New Member

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    I have a set of Autokicker soft saddle bags and while I've not used them a lot, the stock heat shields on my 02 VFR have been just fine at protecting them.

    Sent from my HTC 10 using Tapatalk
     
  19. proper

    proper New Member

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    irishrOy - sorry I'm late to the string here.
    Randy - as always, great info and experience!

    I use soft bags - not great ones, but they get the job done on the cheap, and have not had heat problems. I run the bag straps under the seat, and add some additional stabilizing straps/bungees (make sure they aren't against anything with a sharp edge around the rear plate, or they'll cut).​

    Two easy things you can do to help the mounting and heat concern:
    (1) Do the partial gut to the exhaust for the stock cans to run cooler. This allows the exhaust to hit 2 chambers instead of 3 - avoids back flowing into the middle chamber, therefore it exits with less heating of the cans. On cold mornings I would warm my hands on the cans after I got to work, but after the mod they were a lot cooler. You can do this on the bike for $30 and it GREATLY improves the sound (best mod I have done).
    Here's a pictorial instruction, but send me your email if you want detailed instruction (also discussed elsewhere in this forum). The first picture was someone else's instruction; the second picture shows how I dropped them down without removing.
    upload_2018-1-1_22-6-32.png upload_2018-1-1_22-9-13.jpeg
    (2) I haven't done this bracket, but it looks like an easy way to help keep the bags cooler and not sag inwards.
    upload_2018-1-1_22-20-20.png
    Here's my '06 all loaded up:
    upload_2018-1-1_22-25-43.jpeg
    PS - Don't over stuff the bags or you may compromise the zipper seam, and need to add another bungee ;-)
     

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