Executive summary about motorcycle touring luggage by Timothy Tavender
Popular makes of hard luggage include Givi, Hepco & Becker and Krauser, all of which manufacture racks specific to bike model. When you are looking to put hard luggage on your bike, the first point to consider is “does anyone make a rack for my bike?” Many racks are now quick-release, such as the SW-Motech racks, these are fitted to the bike with 3 or 4 fitting points which are permanent, but unobtrusive. The luggage racks can then be easily put on within minutes, using quick-release bolts.
Of course many riders do not want to put hard luggage on their bike, as they do not want the look of their pride and joy spoilt by racks. This is where soft luggage comes in, and the choice here is vast from a simple tank bag to a set of throw-over panniers and a large tail pack. One of the problems with soft luggage is that it is rarely completely waterproof. Aluminium luggage is another alternative which has become very popular, particularly with BMWs bikes. Most of the hard luggage manufacturers have a version of this style of luggage, which is extremely tough and durable.
There is a vast array of cruiser luggage available, whether you are looking for leather panniers, Cissy bar bags, tool rolls, and rack bags. Leather motorcycle panniers can be either throw-over or fitted onto a chrome tubular rack, which will be specifically designed for your model of bike.