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Old 06-06-2018, 12:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Streamliner-like top box for "average" bike?

Like everyone ( at least everyone here) I am trying to squeeze a bit more economy out of my bike.

The plan is a ride to Costa Rica next year on my NC700X. I took it out for a mountain ride the other day with the current panniers and top box on it and achieved a respectable (at least I thought so) 77.8 mpg over 212 miles of mixed gravel, two lane twisty mountain roads and some highway.

Also on that trip I picked up some boots and discovered, as I suspected, that my current boxes don't have much room in them. Certainly not enough for a central American adventure (unless i want to stay at hotels and wear the same clothes every other day). So as I started looking around for top boxes I noticed that they all look like, .... wait for it..... boxes.

Has anyone tried a more streamliner like shape? And to take it one step further, I would envision being able to slide it forward and backward depending on whether or not I had a passenger (also to be able to access the fuel tank under the passenger seat on the NC)


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Old 06-06-2018, 01:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Because you are not on the hwy running high speeds, I wouldn't worry about the aero of your cargo box. Space is going to be much more important for you, as is having an extremely secure mounting system.

Adding a passenger and needing to be able to remove the rear seat to refuel complicates the issue significantly. Look at what others (sendler comes to mind) have done to mount a large cargo box for ideas.

It's going to end-up being pretty high and far back, and its packed weight could cause some issues.
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Old 06-06-2018, 01:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkv357 View Post
Because you are not on the hwy running high speeds, I wouldn't worry about the aero of your cargo box. Space is going to be much more important for you, as is having an extremely secure mounting system.
For the most part I agree capacity and security are more important, but the current route has about 1000 of the the 3000 miles in the US on highways. That's one way btw.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jkv357 View Post
Adding a passenger and needing to be able to remove the rear seat to refuel complicates the issue significantly. Look at what others (sendler comes to mind) have done to mount a large cargo box for ideas.
I will see if I can find sendler's post on the top box. Passenger is certainly less likely than needing to refuel but I figured I might as well see if I could make it work. My "vision" is pulling a latch pin on each side and sliding it into the rear position for fueling, rather than dismounting entirely.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jkv357 View Post
It's going to end-up being pretty high and far back, and its packed weight could cause some issues.
I was hoping that in the forward position it would be less of an issue. It should weigh less than most passengers and sit much stiller.
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Old 06-06-2018, 02:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColoradoChris View Post
For the most part I agree capacity and security are more important, but the current route has about 1000 of the the 3000 miles in the US on highways. That's one way btw.

I will see if I can find sendler's post on the top box. Passenger is certainly less likely than needing to refuel but I figured I might as well see if I could make it work. My "vision" is pulling a latch pin on each side and sliding it into the rear position for fueling, rather than dismounting entirely.

I was hoping that in the forward position it would be less of an issue. It should weigh less than most passengers and sit much stiller.
I still wouldn't sweat the aero.

Are you able to fabricate and weld the brackets that you need for a system like that? Even something that would let you pivot the front up instead orf removing the box would be helpful.

It will weigh less than a passenger, but all the weight will be up pretty high and far back. The more forward you can get it to mount without being in your way the better.

With the need to be able to move rearward or upward for fueling, the design and fabrication could be challenging.
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Old 08-03-2018, 05:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Make sure that the whole box fits inside of your body profile, and use a straight taper on both sides and top for mild streamlining. Your curves are much too aggressive as drawn.
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Old 08-05-2018, 05:39 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Hey Chris! I believe you might find some great ideas here. They have been tried on multiple bikes and proven to work! Enjoy the read!! :{)

Index to the making of the Last Vetter Fairing

On a short note. You can always streamline the outside of a box that you already have or build one yourself and streamline the outside of it. There are some items that are not costly, that are easy to work with and easy to remove when you are done. Even Coroplast might work for you... (rapturee) :{)

Last edited by HHOTDI; 08-05-2018 at 06:35 PM.. Reason: rented fingers, my lease is about up though.
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Old 08-08-2018, 05:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The tail box I recommend would slide back on heavy drawer pull hardware. The lower section of panniers would be fixed and extend down to just below the knees. The upper box should fit tight to your back and profile with a 7 in. radius at the shoulder. The length and width look right. Just taper the sides a couple inches on each side but only a slight amount on top. The windscreen would extend to shoulder height and a large tank bag for heavy stuff could fill the gap so long as it doesn't interfere with the controls. My shell is for winter riding on my mountain bike so I have side panels. See Schultz Engineering for some of the Vetter Challenge bikes.
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Old 08-08-2018, 08:27 PM   #8 (permalink)
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thanks, i have gotten sidetracked getting the bike up to snuff for an upcoming trip to Bryce Canyon and Zion and Mojave. I hope to get back to the aero at some point but like everyone else I have too many ideas and too little time
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Old 08-08-2018, 08:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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...story of my life as well. If the Cot/Tent continues to work out well as i believe it will AND the factory carrying case does not hold up, then i'll either re-purpose one to fit it or have a custom one made! :{)
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Old 08-19-2018, 04:51 AM   #10 (permalink)
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For travelling back roads, forget about aero
If you look at the Vetter fairing thread, the Vetter competition, and other streamlined bikes, you'll notice streamlining comes at the expense of useable cargo volume.

Hence Craig's grocery bags

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