Fitting cases to your motorcycle
Sturdy side cases are the most secure type of luggage for your motorcycle. An example of how to install the complete case system using Hepco & Becker components is shown.
Systematic luggage transportation – here's how.
Three days before your tour, you lay out everything you need to take with you - then you start to have doubts about how you're going to pack so much stuff on your machine. Cases are the best solution, and if necessary also a top box or luggage rack. Louis offers many different case types and sizes. To equip our Honda XRV 750 Africa Twin for a more demanding type of holiday, we decide to use rugged aluminium cases.
Always comply with the top speed specified by the case manufacturer – this is generally around 80 mph, even in Germany. If you exceed the top speed limit, the cases may cause the rear axle to lift, which can seriously impair your bike's road holding performance. And don't forget that your bike is now rather wider at the back – something to bear in mind as you wind your way through traffic queues or pass between bollards…
Preparing the motorcycle
You're going to need plenty of space, as you can see from the photo – and we haven't even started dismantling here! Once you've found yourself a suitable place for this job, it's a good idea to lay down a blanket or similar so that you've got somewhere to put the dismantled parts where they won't get scratched. And before you make a start, we strongly recommend you carefully look at the installation instructions for your luggage system and check that you have all the right tools.
OK, now you can remove the seat, the side covers and, in our example, the factory-fitted top rack. The cases will be positioned where the turn signals are attached, so you will also need to remove these, as they will be relocated. Now remove the mudguard – this is in order to attach the lower mount (cross-connector), which spans from the left to the right of the bike. Before removing the tail light and the turn signals, you have to disconnect the various connectors – but no need to worry, as they only fit in a one position, so it's virtually impossible to make a mistake when reconnecting them.
Mounting the carrier system and relocating the turn signals
Connect the lower mount (cross-connector) using the screws provided for this purpose. Because you need to carry out final adjustments when you're done, you should initially only hand-tighten the screws.
This next bit is slightly tricky because you now need to attach three parts all at the same time. Start by attaching the turn signals to the upper mount and securing the turn signal cables in the brackets on the frame. Then replace the mudguard, the mount and the original top rack.
Screw the side carriers and the locking mechanisms to the upper and lower mounts and connect the front retaining brackets of the side carriers underneath the pillion grip.
Reconnecting the turn signals
Because you are relocating the turn signals a few centimetres further back, your cables will now be too short. Use the supplied cables to lengthen them and reconnect the lights. After connecting up, check that the turn signals are fully functional before you replace the side covers.
Aligning and fixing the carrier system
To give the whole thing real stability, you need to mount a connecting brace between the rear footrest wings and the side carriers on both sides. Fasten these braces using the rear screws of the footrest wings. To avoid distorting the footrest wings when you tighten the screws, insert flat washers under the front screws to compensate for the resulting gap.
Screw the top box carrier onto the original rack. To do this, remove the 4 rubber plugs and the screws which are then visible. Now mount the top box carrier using the longer screws supplied. Check that all screws are securely tightened.
Check the fit and that the locking mechanism is working properly by attaching the case on one side and pressing the other side into the locking mechanism. If you have any problem snapping the case into place, undo the locking mechanisms again and re-align them until they work properly. If the key will not turn in the lock, or only with difficulty, this may be an indication that the mechanism is not correctly aligned.
Important practical recommendations
Our touring enduro is now just about ready for the great outdoors A few final tips on the best way to handle your cases: Make sure they are not too close to the exhaust system once they are fitted. It is essential to test your bike's suspension several times while stationary. In fact, it's best to do it with two people – just to make sure that the cases do not hit anything when the suspension is fully compressed. Incorrect installation can lead to a dangerous riding situation with the risk of an accident. Never overload your bike – always adhere to the permitted gross weight as specified on the vehicle registration certificate. Weight must always be distributed evenly, so be sure to spread the load equally when packing. When you pack your cases, put heavier items at the bottom, and only put lighter things in the top box. The cases themselves and the carriers must always be securely locked before you set out on the road.
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The Louis Technical Centre
Problems getting spare parts? Or maybe you've got a technical question about your motorcycle or an accessory The Louis Technical Centre can help! Remember to quote all the necessary details of your vehicle – better still, send us a copy of your registration document.
We will get back to you as quickly as possible!
So: send us your technical problem!
- by e-mail to email@example.com
- or by letter to Louis Technical Centre, 21027 Hamburg
These tips for DIY mechanics contain general recommendations that may not apply to all vehicles or all individual components. As local conditions may vary considerably, we are unable to guarantee the correctness of information in these tips for DIY mechanics.
Thank you for your understanding.
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