I love my Tank Bag, because it moves some of the weight up front and it keeps the things I need frequently very close. There are a couple of key items I should point out in picking out a tank bag.
You don’t need the biggest one made
These things are for holding frequently used items and you still need to see all your gauges and warning lights
Waterproofing is important
That means the entire structure is waterproof and that it does not come with or need a waterproof cover.
When you riding off road (rough roads) it might be necessary to move the tank bag to an alternate location. Go ahead and figure this out before you leave and understand the items you will need to store it in this alternate location (straps, cargo net, etc.).
My MAP VIEW hardly ever has maps in it. What I have found more important and tire pressure reminders, Daily maximum of over the counter medicine and the Shawn Thomas “Dude, Rock on” patch. The tire pressures and drug information being on a laminate because map compartments are not condensation proof.
Always have a hat
Between the top of the main compartment and the waterproof lining of the main compartment I place a hat. Lets face it your going to take the helmet off as soon as possible and your walking around stores, gas stations, and restaurants in motorcycle gear the least you could do is get your hair under control.
Small front pocket
The small front pocket is the best place for your vices. Vices meaning immoral behavior or habits you may have. In other words its a good place for cigarettes, chew or in my case gum. Other frequently used items are:
“Helmetlok” Lock – for securing helmet in dodgy areas.
Benadryl – Crossing the country you will need it.
Chap stick – Crossing the country you will need it.
Dubs or ear plugs – Crossing the country you will need it.
Aspirin bottle -small easy to get to.
The main compartment holds thing that you may never need during the trip but if you do need them, you will need them readily available such as a first aid kit or backup batteries for the GPS SPOT device.
First you will notice a much larger bottle of aspirin that used to fill up the small front pocket bottle.
The yellow cloth is Microfiber and is used for cleaning the visor or goggles. There are a set of clear FOX goggles and extra visor bolts for the Arai helmet. As mentioned previously lithium batteries for SPOT and standard small first aid kit. A Gerber Diesel Multi-tool and flushable wipes (there again – crossing the country thing). A pelican 1040 water proof case (yes the tank bag is waterproof but this stuff is import to keep dry). The pelican case holds:
- High Capacity Dual USB 12,000mAh External Battery pack
- Besgoods Mini USB LED Flexible Adjust Angle Lamp
- USB micro cord
- USB I phone lightning cord
- Powerlet to USB adapter
This allows me to have a work light, charge my phone, charge the Sena, recharge the battery or in a pinch run the GPS SPOT. If camping or just in an emergency the ability to have reliable power that doesn’t connect your person to the motorcycles is key.
I have found that the easy to find “small first aid kit” should act as a starter kit and you should customize it to your needs. For example I lack the skill to properly apply butterfly bandages while at the same time bleeding all over them. I discovered that the Krazy glue 1 use tubes are great for minding wounds and as a result have added them to my kit. I should point out that I have damaged myself more due to camping in sandals than I have ever hurt myself on a motorbike.