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What Are the Different Types of Motorcycle Luggage?

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  • Written By: Christina Edwards
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 08 December 2016
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Whether they are taking a quick trip to the store or riding across the country, many motorcycle owners will need some sort of motorcycle luggage. Saddlebags are considered to be the most common type, but other types are also available. There are also hard or soft types of luggage that can be attached to the pillion, or passenger, seat or passenger backrest. Smaller storage compartments can also be attached to the fuel tank of a motorcycle or located under the seat.

Panniers are commonly referred to as saddlebags or motorcycle bags, and they are one of the most common types of motorcycle luggage. These are made up of two containers that are attached by a strap. This type of luggage is typically draped across the frame, with one container alongside each rear wheel. Certain types of saddlebags are removable, while others are permanently affixed to the motorcycle.

Many saddlebags are leather, but they can also be made from other materials like plastic, metal, or fabric. Leather and fabric bags are often soft and flexible, while plastic and metal boxes are typically rigid. Some saddlebags are also designed with a locking mechanism.

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The pillion is another place where motorcycle luggage can be placed. There are several different packs, for instance, that can be attached to the front of the sissy bars, or backrest. In the absence of a passenger, these packs can be set right on the seat. On the other hand, bike owners can attach these packs to the back of the sissy bars.

A top-box is another type of hard motorcycle luggage. Like some packs, this is also secured behind the seat. Top-boxes can be an aftermarket addition to a motorcycle, meaning that they were not part of the original design. Some bikes, on the other hand, may already come with this type of luggage attached.

These boxes are often one of the more secure types of motorcycle luggage, since they can be locked. Some of these boxes also serve as a backrest for passengers. Others may even have built-in taillights.

As their name suggests, tank bags are mounted to the fuel tank of a motorcycle. Some of these bags can be attached using magnets. On non-metal tanks, they can be attached with straps. This type of motorcycle luggage is typically quite small, and it is often reserved for small items, such as maps or sunglasses.

Most motorcycles also have a built-in storage compartment under the seat. This is sometimes referred to as the trunk. Like a tank bag, this area is typically small, usually reserved for small tools or other items.

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