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Thread: 83 R100 RS - Pannier latch exploded!

  1. #1
    Figuring this out
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    83 R100 RS - Pannier latch exploded!

    Driving along nice as you please in the sleepy suburbs (30 mph-ish) and the latch on one of my panniers disintegrates, sending the thing sprawling across the road! Not cool! The only upside is that I'm about two weeks away from taking a 600 mile road trip and I'm really glad this didn't happen on the highway.

    It wasn't the plastic of the pannier that broke. It was the metal latch. Standard issue BMW. Has this happened to anyone else?

  2. #2
    MonoRT MonoRT's Avatar
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    On my 85 R80RT, I've had a number of near failures with the latches that fasten the bag to the rack. The things are cast from some sort of zinc alloy and are not super strong. They like to crack through the thinnest part of the hook that goes round the rack's vertical tube.

    I can't recall what my owner's manual says, but I seem to recall a maximum weight per bag of around 11 lbs. I often carry more than the max and I work in an industrial area with railroad tracks and roads that are torn up by the Port of Los Angeles truck traffic - hard on bags and racks. So, I've made a little mod that has helped - at least I don't crack the latches very often and I've not lost a bag.

    At any rate, you often see guys adding Bungee Buddies to their bags to strap stuff on top of the bag or to add tie-down points to keep the bag shut or whatever... I have 4 bungee buddies on the top of each bag - at the four corners of the top of the bag. I use a good leather bicycle toestrap to tie the rear, inside bungee buddy to the tail rack's side rails. If you cinche the strap kind-of tight, you are moving some of the stress away from the bag latch and up to the rear rack. The set-up pulls the inside half of the bag upwards and inwards. Even if the latch breaks, the bag won't fall off unless the toestrap or bungee buddy also fail.

  3. #3
    Figuring this out
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    Thanks, MonoRT. I guess I'm going to start strapping the things on as well as latching them. Kind of a bummer cuz it sort of spoils the look . But that's what I get for liking old things.

    If anyone has a spare left pannier they don't need let me know...

  4. #4
    One big Oaff brewmeister's Avatar
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    well it is near 4th of july and stuff blows up!
    81 R100RT

  5. #5
    Total Freak mikegates's Avatar
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    LOL, fell off chair, i need a laugh, thanks scottie
    95 R100Rt, 07 650 GS
    Mike
    Eagle, wi
    "He's gone and nothin gone bring him back"

  6. #6
    Monza Blue 1974 R90/6
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    I recognize it won't help for the left side, but as info, you can buy the latches. Take a look at the parts fiche under "frame, fairing, cases". Comes with keys and the rivets.

    I was a little luckier and noticed a crack in mine. Replaced it and kept a watch on the other side. Eventually, it cracked as well. The metal isn't very strong. I think it starts out as a crack and then if you don't see it, become a catastrophic failure such as you experienced.

    Barron

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by barron_williams View Post
    I recognize it won't help for the left side Barron
    No, it absolutely helps! The case wasn't destroyed. It just skidded across the road. I guess I just assumed I couldn't order a latch off a 30 year old piece of luggage. But I just did! I found it at this place:

    http://www.maxbmwmotorcycles.com/fic...7&rnd=04302013

    Thanks, barron! (I am still going to strap them down though)

  8. #8
    Monza Blue 1974 R90/6
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    Well, that is good news the case wasn't broken. The latch is a relatively inexpensive fix and you might get lucky and they can get you one with same key code as the original.

    Rivets are kind of tricky as the quarters are tight. They are also an odd size, so if you screw one up ...

    I used the straps for awhile, but then gave it up, figuring it took 20+ years before the original latch broke.

    Barron

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