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Reviewed by: Drew Snyder (sappho7136)
Reviewed for: 2001 1500 Valkyrie Standard
Used for: 1-6 months
Overall Rating: 5
Ease of install: 5
Would buy again: yes
EXCELLENT!! And work fantastic with the Easy Brackets (SEE BELOW). I had the older style of these same bags on my VTX and loved how big they were. If you ride a big cruiser you should not have to relocate your turn signals mount these. And if you plan on using the yoke instead of hard-mounting, be sure to punch extra holes (like many reviews say) or they will droop onto your exhaust--these will sag a bit when they heat up in the sun (not enough to alter the appearance, but enough to drop down onto the exhaust pipe--learned the hard way on the last bike). MODS ON THE NEW STYLE: River Road has made some INCREDIBLE upgrades since then--I just finished installing on my Valkyrie. The handle is more usable if you hard mount and the new, over-the-top straps with quick release buckles gives more flexibility without having to adjust the buckles. Also, the buckles themselves seem to be higher quality than on the older style (had issues with the buckles rusting on the last set). And the new style comes with a Velcro neoprene to keep the bags from scuffing the bike (which comes in handy if you want to hard mount them--SEE BELOW). And if you decide to mount them traditionally and will want them to be "removable," R/R added quick release straps that secure the bottom of the bag to the bracket. HARD MOUNTING: Usually you don't/can't hard mount soft-sided bags--unless you reinforce them. The removable neoprene backing provides an excellent buffer for securing the Easy Brackets to the bags. I used Lexan (a composite plastic that is very strong and lighter than metal, available at Home Depot) which I cut using a jigsaw to a little smaller than the size of the bag. I then secured the 4 corners with button cap alan bolts, fender washers (1.5"--2 per bolt), and lock nuts. I drilled through the leather bag, the Lexan and the neoprene and ran the bolt all the way through with a fender washer on either side. I then did the same with the Easy Bracket bolts. I have the bolt heads on the inside of the bage so there aren't any sharp surfaces to damage gear (yes, it is possible to secure the lock nuts on the Easy Bracket on the exterior--facing the biked--it's just more difficult to tighten the nut where the locking arm of the bracket is--use needle-nose pliers). Although at first glance the bolts don't quite seem long enough, but they'll make it all the way through the neoprene and the Easy Bracket with room to spare to fully secure the lock nut. As far as placement, I took another reviewer's suggestion and placed a 2x4 on the exhaust pipe and then set the bag on top of the 2x4 and marked the bracket. As of right now, the placement looks great. B/c these bags can droop a little (although, mostly when they're traditionally mounted b/c the backing droops over the bracket) I am a little concerned about whether the distance was enough. However, I think it's going to be just fine as they haven't yet after a couple months in the Central Florida sun/heat. If that changes, I'll be sure to update. The result was a solid mount on the biggest bag on the market that looks great and lasts forever (the old-style of the same bag I had on my VTX for 3 years and they were still in great shape).
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