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October 16, 2020

SADDLEBACK: AUTONOMOUS MOUNTING SYSTEM FOR SOFT SADDLEBAGS.

Head over here for a general presentation of the Saddleback mounting system.

We designed this system for cafe racers, scramblers, vintage and classic motorcycles. 

This universal, autonomous system allows you to combine the Longride saddlebags with any third-party luggage bracket. Sometimes, you can even mount your saddlebag directly onto your machine's frame, although this is usually easier done with a set of two saddlebags. We dedicated a separate post about the mounting of a pair of saddlebags.

This post describes the fitting of a single saddlebag.

Best soft saddlebag for Bonneville T120.

A saddlebag equipped with the Saddleback system is great for:

+ owners of a cafe racer, scrambler, classic or vintage motorcycle.
+ those who want soft saddlebags that are easy to carry off the bike.
+ an authentic look that will enhance the character of their machine.
+ either mounting a single, or a pair of saddlebags.

This system is not:

+ an ultra quick-release system (It's reasonably fast though).
+ designed specifically for your motorcycle. It will adapt to any bike.
+ for those who look for utilitarian low-priced saddlebags. 


HOW TO USE THE SADDLEBACK SYSTEM.

If you look at the backside of the saddlebags, you will find a set of two parallel leather straps.
They allow you to anchor the upper part of the bag, but also to choose how high you want to position your saddlebag. To set your saddlebag higher or lower, you simply get the straps through the desired set of slots.

Soft saddlebag with universal mounting system.

Then to anchor the bag, you simply loop the straps around a frame. It could be elements from your motorcycle, or saddlebags holders, such as rails.

The video further down will help you picture how it works.

There are several benefits to the unique height adjustment feature. You can of course set it so it looks good to you, but you can also use that to make sure your bag stays away from your burning hot exhaust.

Then, between the parallel straps, you will find the harness in black. You will use it to loop around some part of the motorcycle's frame to fully anchor your saddlebag down. And if the harness isn't practical, you can ignore it. We also provide two nylon cords that you can tie to your motorcycle. There are two leather loops at the corners of the bags to do just that. You can fit the nylon cords with quick-release clasps, or replace them with zip-ties for example.


DO I NEED SADDLEBAG HOLDERS, OR CAN I MOUNT THEM ON MY MOTORCYCLE DIRECT?

There's no denying saddlebags holders make it really easy to use the Saddleback system. The luggage frame is at your disposal to secure the leather straps, and harness. This makes the process usually faster and easier.
Luggage holders are also non abrasive and don't move and vibrate as much as your suspension.

This being said, it depends on your motorcycle.
The real question shouldn't be "is this saddlebag compatible with my motorcycle?", but rather "is my motorcycle ready for saddlebags?"

We have written a separate blog post about that. Please read "Do I need pannier rails to hold my bags?".

Here, we will demonstrate the system on saddlebag rails. See how it works, and find out if you can use your motorcycle frame to do the same, making sure that your saddlebag is supported (by the suspension for example), that it can't touch the rear wheel, and that it's inches away from the exhaust.

Otherwise, please consider purchasing a luggage frame, such as saddlebag holders, or spacer rails. The Saddleback System can mount onto pretty much any frame. You can also have something made by a custom garage of course.


STRAPPING ONE SADDLEBAG ON A SPACER RAIL.

Images speak louder than words, and even more so when they move.
So let's watch a video. This is a custom T120 fitted with the Triumph Classics Spacers made by us.
This is just one example. The same can be done on a wide variety of motorcycles.

 

This video shows how you can choose the height position of your saddlebag.
First le lowest position, using the highest set of slots, the intermediate position and finally the highest position, using the lower set of slots which effectively pushes the saddlebag up.

The parallel straps go around the top rail tube, while the harness goes around the bottom rail tube. Note that in this video, we show you the two available methods to anchor down your saddlebag. You can either use the harness on the lower tube, or tie knots onto your motorcycle's frame.


Let's compare the 3 height positions.

From the lowest position to the highest, you have over 4 inches to play with.
You will choose the position that looks right to you, or because it's the most practical, or secure.

 Different positions of a saddlebag on a motorcycle.

Choosing what looks best aside, setting a higher position might be imperative to create a healthy distance from your exhaust pipes. Or maybe it'll leave more space for your passenger...

So it's simply a really handy option to have.