Action Packer Alternative - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 09-16-2011, 10:19 AM Thread Starter
OverDrive
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NW MO
Posts: 5,340
Action Packer Alternative

I went last night to try to find an 8-gallon Action Packer to put on my KLR. Didn't find any of those, but found this 10-gallon "Tough Tote" with a hinged lid and latch for $18.

Build quality/ruggedness is about the same as an Action Packer; polypropylene or whatever that stuff is.

I got it on this morning. The base wasn't big enough to use the four original rear rack bolts like I'd done with my milk crate, so I had to drill a couple of holes.

The lockable latch falls into the "keeping honest people honest" category but it's kind of nice to have, as is the hinged lid. I even scrounged up a small padlock out in the garage that works with it.

All in all, much better than spending 10 minutes in the parking lot at work trying to get stuff in and out of a backpack and putting stuff in trash bags inside the backpack if it's going to rain, messing with bungees, etc. It holds my duty belt, etc. on the way to work, then my jacket, pants, etc. once I get there. Good place to keep the rain gear, too.

I was hoping my helmet would fit in there too, but it won't.

I'm going to find some bolts with knobs on them to make an efficient "modular cargo system" where I can quickly remove/install either the tote or my old milk crate with no tools depending on what I'm needing to do.

Not the best day to take pictures as it's raining and I was stuck in the garage, but here's what it looks like. It looks pretty large in the photo, but that's just the angle. Compare it to the rear rack for perspective.

Color is non-negotiable: green/black only.

Another plus is that it doesn't obscure the tail light as much as the long, overhanging collapsible milk crate did. Think I'll add some reflectors or reflective tape to it.

I'll post a better photo of it when it stops raining and the sun's out.

[IMG][/IMG]



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post #2 of 14 Old 09-17-2011, 09:55 AM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NW MO
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Here are a couple of better photos:

[IMG][/IMG]

[IMG][/IMG]



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post #3 of 14 Old 09-17-2011, 11:55 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Apache junction Az
Posts: 148
Thumbs up Nice job and with in my budget

A motorcycle just isn't practical unless it has the loading capsite of a half ton pickup. lol I found that when you start putting boxes and bags on the gen II bike they get real tippy on the kickstand. I shorten the dog bone link on the rear suspension to bring things back to stock heighth + a little. I can now put the spring preload on the #1 setting and it rides much better. It locks like a solid box good job.
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post #4 of 14 Old 09-17-2011, 12:14 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NW MO
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Yeah, it looks stupid, but it works. I don't see every putting anything really heavy in it; pretty much just riding gear. If I didn't ride to work, I would have just stayed with the milk crate but it's really nice to have a fairly secure and dry place to leave my gear while I'm at work.

We have lockers there, but they're small and won't hold my stuff so it all has to stay on the KLR in the parking lot.

Or, if I run around town and pick up a few things, I can at least lock it when I have to leave something on the bike. With the milk crate, I either had to plan my stops to where I wouldn't have to leave anything in the crate unattended or take stuff into the next store on my list and ask them if I could leave it at the front counter. They would usually let me do that.

If I was going to carry heavy stuff all the time, I would try to craft some ammo-can panniers, but I really have no reason to add that much weight and bulk right now. My helmet won't fit in it along with the riding gear, but I don't want anything larger.

I've got raising links and I also pried out my kickstand so it wouldn't rub on the swingarm so the bike leans over at a pretty good angle on the stand compared to the nearly-vertical stock configuration.

Last hurdle is the helmet. I think I might move my helmet lock to the lid of the tote or rig up some kind of cable lock there. There's no way to hang a helmet on the helmet lock without it being upside down, so if it rains, you're riding home with a wet head. If it looks like rain, I just put my helmet in a trash bag and hang it off the lock.

I figure if I moved the lock to the top of the tote, I could set my helmet upright on top of it and maybe use a bungee to stabilize it, or maybe make some kind of flip-up "stand" or post that would keep the helmet from blowing off in the wind, etc. That way, if I get an unexpected rain, at least it wouldn't soak the lining of my helmet. Still thinking about that one, tho.



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post #5 of 14 Old 09-20-2011, 07:37 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by planalp View Post

Last hurdle is the helmet. I think I might move my helmet lock to the lid of the tote or rig up some kind of cable lock there. There's no way to hang a helmet on the helmet lock without it being upside down, so if it rains, you're riding home with a wet head. If it looks like rain, I just put my helmet in a trash bag and hang it off the lock.

I figure if I moved the lock to the top of the tote, I could set my helmet upright on top of it and maybe use a bungee to stabilize it, or maybe make some kind of flip-up "stand" or post that would keep the helmet from blowing off in the wind, etc. That way, if I get an unexpected rain, at least it wouldn't soak the lining of my helmet. Still thinking about that one, tho.
I found that the padlock I use to lock the tote works just fine as a helmet lock. The helmet can just hang off the back, or you can also set it upright on top of the tote and use a bungee to secure it against the wind.



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post #6 of 14 Old 09-20-2011, 02:09 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 1,063
If you don't need a lock, here's a cheap way to hold it to bike.
At least it won't blow off the seat.


Ageing Gracefully



2017 Yamaha XT250
1990 Honda NX250 (Green/White)
2011 Kawasaki KLR 650 (Orange & White )

My KLR Page..http://www.powers31.info/2011_KLR650.htm

Mod's to KLR:
Power socket, L.E.D. Battery Indicator, Camera bag holder
Custom Saddlebag frames .
Louder horns, Firstgear Onyx tail bag.
Custom Aluminum Skid Plate.
Cut down seat with Custom pad.
Go Pro Camera mount.
Doo-Hicky
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post #7 of 14 Old 09-21-2011, 12:17 AM Thread Starter
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Location: NW MO
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Man, first night using the Tough Tote to commute and it was fantastic: much better than the backpack/bungee arrangement. Didn't have to spend a bunch of time trying to cram stuff into the backpack, putting it in trash bags if it looked like it might rain, worrying if my bungee cords were getting too stretched out, etc.

Stuff to take into work comes out and riding gear comes off, and into the tote, layered and ready to pull out and put on in reverse order after work in about 2 minutes instead of 10 messing around with everything strewn over my seat and handlebars in the dark, dropping gloves on the ground, re-securing the partially-filled backpack, etc.

Cheap, crude and ugly, kind of like the rider, but this was one of the best "mods" I've done to my KLR. Should have done it a long time ago.




Last edited by planalp; 09-21-2011 at 12:38 AM.
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post #8 of 14 Old 09-21-2011, 08:11 PM
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Spray the green part black and it'll blend right in! I have one of those cheapo JC Whitney trunks on my KLR and I love it, like you say it's so nice not having to mess with bungies and bags.


Last edited by 650Stew; 09-24-2011 at 12:00 AM.
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post #9 of 14 Old 09-22-2011, 12:16 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 650Stew View Post
Spray the green part black and it'll blend right in! I have one of those cheapo JC Whitney trunks on my KLR and I love it, like you say it's so nice not having to mess with bugies and bags.
Good idea. Wonder if that Krylon paint for plastic would stick to it?



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post #10 of 14 Old 09-22-2011, 09:11 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Meadow Vista, CA
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Krylon Fusion paint will stick to it, I painted by plastic outdoor furniture with it a few months back and it seems to be working great, they have a bunch of colors too.

Cool install, if I could get a lumber rack on mine I'd do it, 700 a month on gas these days is a killer!
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