Panniers and Wind Resistance
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Thread: Panniers and Wind Resistance

  1. #1
    Senior Member retmotor's Avatar
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    I've been thinking about bags and found myself wondering if those with relatively large panniers noticed a reduced top speed due to wind resistance.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member assquatch20's Avatar
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    With a typical soft bag, it's a pretty minute difference unless you're getting a severe headwind or hefty crosswind. Typically they tuck in well enough behind your legs to keep notable effects down.



    I never had the hard cases on the TW but I'd imagine it might be a bit more noticeable there, and while I originally liked the idea of those, I don't think the risk of breaking an ankle on the trails with them would be worth that plus the high cost.



    I guess I should add that the weight is going to do more than the aerodynamics, I'd imagine. And even so, it would probably just take you longer to reach top speed. A big top bag with a lot of weight could also get a wobble going, but maybe not at TW speeds.

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    Senior Member FortPayne's Avatar
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    I've got ammo can panniers, surprisingly I can tell no difference. They're not huge so the weight isn't much of an issue. They do however protect the bike in a fall and thats pretty sweet. I wouldn't trade 'em for anything. Dubsteppin has much larger ammo can boxes on his (recently stolen) tdub- ya might ask him.
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  5. #4
    Super Moderator goldenhtr's Avatar
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    Really can't tell a difference, unless there is a lot of wind. But 55-60 is no problem.



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  6. #5
    Senior Member small's's Avatar
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    The wife and i rode to moto gp last weekend with the givi e21's on and loaded down. When we left we got into a huge pack of sportbikes and i was feeling kind of frisky so i followed them onto interstate 465 for a few miles and then interstate 70 for about 4-5 miles. We reached a GPS indicated 69-70mph under WFO.. And it would sustain. It never felt like i was getting blown around. Me and the wife together are about 250lbs plus gear and loaded boxes.

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  7. #6
    Senior Member retmotor's Avatar
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    That is great to hear. Thank you all for responding!
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  8. #7
    Senior Member Dubster's Avatar
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    I modified the rack and installed a set of OEM luggage from a Suzuki V-Strom on the TW.I can't say I notice a difference in performance/speed but at speeds above 60mph or with a stiff headwind the bike begins to weave/wobble.Obviously aerodynamics and the "tail wagging the dog".It was a little unnerving at first but I am used to it now and drive accordingly.







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  9. #8
    Senior Member assquatch20's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dubster' View Post
    I modified the rack and installed a set of OEM luggage from a Suzuki V-Strom on the TW.I can't say I notice a difference in performance/speed but at speeds above 60mph or with a stiff headwind the bike begins to weave/wobble.Obviously aerodynamics and the "tail wagging the dog".It was a little unnerving at first but I am used to it now and drive accordingly.


    I've found that a speed wobble like that kicks in when the weight is too high. Your luggage doesn't look to be that way, but maybe try riding with them empty vs. loaded sometime to compare. The higher a bag is, the less you need to put in it.

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