Tool Tubes! - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 04-11-2013, 12:08 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Durango Colorado
Posts: 54
Tool Tubes!

I'm thinking of adding a tool tube on my bike. My buddy is a plumber and might have some leftover 3" PVC pipe laying around, I though it might be perfect.

I'm planning on doing some camping this year including some in the back country off 4WD trails. I'm a bit worried about flats though, so I'd like to be able to repair one on the trail, and bring the tools needed for that.

So, any recommendations on how to attach it to the bike? I'd like it to be secure. Has anyone else used a set up like this? Any other ideas, or something I haven't considered?

Also, how important are rim locks? I'm not going to be doing single track, or boulder fields, but might do some 4WD trails that have some rough spots. I have rim locks but they are not currently installed, and unless necessary I don't want to install them.
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post #2 of 17 Old 04-11-2013, 12:32 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: NW MO
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This is my setup. It's a piece of 4" PVC pipe and is mounted with stainless steel hose clamps, 2 on each side for redundancy on my HT engine guard/highway peg bar. I put one of those expandable plugs in each end as a "door," but really should have only spent the money on one and just used a plug or cap on the other end as I always pull my tools out from the right side.

Not saying this is the be-all/end-all of tool tubes, but it might give you some ideas. My tire clears mine. That mark you see in the middle of it is just dried road spray off the front tire.

You can get a lot of stuff in a piece of 4x17" PVC pipe. I carry my entire tool kit in there along with some odds and ends. I carry my spare tubes/repair kit in a soft bag that's mounted on my eBay side panel guards.

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post #3 of 17 Old 04-11-2013, 07:00 PM
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Lincoln welding rod tube on bike; Hobart on asphalt:

Agri-tube; has vent:

Just for consideration; these are basically plug-'n'-play options; low-cost and easy to implement.
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post #4 of 17 Old 04-11-2013, 08:52 PM
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Hi Powderaddict!
Rimlocks are needed at 15 psi or less. I didn't and had a crash when the valvestem pulled out and the back tire went flat suddenly at highway speed.


It's not a Tractor....It's a LOCOMOTIVE!! Chugga Chugga
Woooo WOOOOO!!!!!
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post #5 of 17 Old 04-12-2013, 07:15 AM
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I used thin-walled grey PVC -- it gives more interior space for the outside diameter. The cap walls are also thinner and I cut a ring from another fitting to reinforce the open end.

My supports are 3/16 steel rod that I threaded at the ends. The ends also have double washers and double nuts since potholes will put lots of tension on the threads.

The Ricochet bash plate mounts with a U-bolt and that same U- bolt also keeps that aluminum angle iron there.

Then I replaced the wingnut with a combination phillips/flat machine screw that I can open with a screwdriver or a penny (U.S. only -- obsolete in Canada).

The inside is large enough for 2 tubes, 3 tire irons, patches, and an aluminum mini pump. I can cram many more tools in there, but usually have my tools in a rear case since I often need them for other bikes.

EDIT: There's a thread on another forum that warns about clearance problems with 4" tubes on KLRs. I don't believe it -- even with full compression and lots of fork flex the tire cannot come close. I have checked it only with Kenda 761 tires, not anything knobbier.

Last edited by Grinnin; 04-12-2013 at 07:20 AM.
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post #6 of 17 Old 04-12-2013, 09:11 AM
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IMHO and experience use the larger PVC pipe as they allow more equipment inside for you to use. The smaller tubes are a joke IMHO in comparisn.
BUT, if that is all you can do then fine.....something is better than nothing.

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post #7 of 17 Old 04-14-2013, 03:58 AM
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Agri-Tube; Welding Rod Holder Tool Tube PM

Here's some PM traffic (OP's identity protected) on tool tubes I share:

Incoming PM I received:
I saw your post on the subject and really like the black tube. Could you share what it is and where to get them?
Many thanks!
My response:
You can buy an "Agri-Tube" from Agricultural Supply Company,

About $ 5 plus shipping.

I just gave away a spare I had around the shop to a KLR rider I met on the Internet; may have another one; if I can find it I will be glad to send it to you; no charge!

The Agri-Tube is about 3-1/4 inches in diameter and approximately 12 inches long. If you mount it low (e.g., on the bash plate), you may want to seal the vent hole with some goop, for waterproofing.

A more elegant mount might be under the left rear side panel, sort of a "faux muffler" orientation.

The welding rod holders (Hobart, Home Depot; Lincoln, Tractor Supply Company) are also about 3-1/4 inches internal diameter, but approximately 15 inches long. These products are waterproof, with a rubber gasket seal. I painted my Lincoln welding rod holder black and mounted it on the Happy Trails bash plate with hose clamps, where it fits between the Happy Trails nerf bar/engine protector rods with clearance to open the cap (I know, I know; a little low and rock-proximate perhaps, but . . . if I break it, I'll buy another! ).

I wouldn't suggest, "one size fits all," regarding tool tubes--in my view, different individuals have different preferences and requirements. For example, an individual KLRista may prefer and require a 55-gallon drum for his tool tube; I would not presume to dictate he clone my preference and requirement or call his choice a "joke." To do so would seem to me arrogant, egotistical--immaturely narcissistic, and perhaps somewhat megalomaniacal--to each his/her own.

I line my tool tube with a laminated 8-1/2 " X 11" sheet of paper: On one side, "All You Every Really Wanted To Know About The KLR650," a listing of all critical data, diagrams of hub assembly exploded parts diagrams, etc.; and on the other side, a color wiring diagram. (Might get around to E-mailing images of these two reference pages, if requested.)

Will post some pictures when I get a chance.

Otherwise, best wishes on your tool tube, whatever your choice!
Just got back from an epic adventure ride through the dirt 'n' gravel of George Washington National Forest and Lost River (WV) State Park, VA/WV; will get those images up when things settle down.
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post #8 of 17 Old 04-14-2013, 07:48 AM
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Great idea on the info sheet(especially the wiring) inside the tool tube.

Agri supply also has a flat manual case for $9 that fits nicely on the rack of the gen2 KLR. I made "U" brackets and clamped it to the OEM rack. On the rack the weight is high, but with lighter items it's not a bad place for extra storage. I like it because I can strap a duffle bag on it when camping and it isn't in the way.

Several good options out there and each rider's need/preference will be different. I just get the tools and supplies I plan to carry and figure out where they will fit. YMMV
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post #9 of 17 Old 04-14-2013, 10:42 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2013
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GREAT Idea! If anyone has this for Gen II it would be muchly appreciated. (Damocles is for Gen I)



Originally Posted by Damocles View Post
I line my tool tube with a laminated 8-1/2 " X 11" sheet of paper: On one side, "All You Every Really Wanted To Know About The KLR650," a listing of all critical data, diagrams of hub assembly exploded parts diagrams, etc.; and on the other side, a color wiring diagram. (Might get around to E-mailing images of these two reference pages, if requested.)

2011 BMW K1600GTL
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post #10 of 17 Old 04-14-2013, 10:57 AM
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Gray, TN & Merritt Island, FL
Posts: 7
Thanks for sharing the source info!
Very much appreciated!!
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