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Thread: 1996 R1100RSL Gear storage questions

  1. #1
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    1996 R1100RSL Gear storage questions

    Iím new to BMW, just bought 96 R1100RS and am getting acclimated. Now noticing no fairing storage compartments, no passenger back rest, no tail luggage rack and, from what I have been able to find so far, no way to fix the problem. So now I ask the EXPERTS: whatís needed to fit a rear rest and/or trunk? I have the OEM saddlebags. Also, is there any provision for storage in the fairing? Finally, best advise on a tank bag? (Until yesterday, I thought the tank was steel!)
    Thanks
    David

  2. #2
    Registered User barryg's Avatar
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    I gotta Ď94 R1100RS. Iíve done all the upgrades. If I knew from the beginning what was ahead, I might have chose another bike. The basic bike is a good platform, but. I started with a low mileage model in Ď96, came with a set of oem bags. Nice as far as it went. Endless additions. Oem tankbag, soft luggage for saddlebags, oem rear rack support bars, oem RT rear rack, nice used RT oem trunk. Scuffed up the bag lids, so instead of fixing, I added the big lids. Hey, the bags now hold a large full face helmet, no problem. I did a lot of other upgrades, but I think this covers your question about how to carry and store stuff.

  3. #3
    Registered User GTRider's Avatar
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    I used an RKA strap-on tank bag on my Ď95 RSL. The low and narrow bar width allowed a decent sized tank bag. BMW had bag carriers and a rear rack available- IIRC the RSL models came with saddlebags, which were color-matched, but did not include the luggage rack at the tailójust a grab bar was fitted. Components or a kit were available from BMW to add the rackóyou can see the component parts here.

    There was a separate tailpiece/rear cowling available with slots already cut for the rear support arms on the rack, as cutting the slots the correct size and location was extremely difficult. IMO the BMW rear rack was not all that useful except as a tie-down point for the large waterproof gear bag I strapped on the rear seat. Quite a number of folks installed the actual rack plate from an R1100RT on the rack mounts of their RS. The plate was a direct bolt-on in replacement of the RS rack plate and was larger, with a turned-up tail that made a much more secure platform for luggage.

    A better rear rack is available from Hepco-Becker as shown here. I donít know if H-B furnishes a template piece for cutting the rear cowl, or whether their rack assumes you already have the rear rack support arms in placeóyou'd have to research that with them.

    And, you can always check with Givi or Shad to see if the offer a topcase and mounts to fit the R1100RSL, or see if a case is still available from BMW or in the used parts market.

    There is also a small cubby space available under the rear cowl-big enough for a tire repair kit, that sort of thing.

    HTH,
    DeVern
    DGerber
    1983 R80ST ó 1984 R80 G/S-PD ó 2004 K1200GT w/Hannigan S/C ó 2010 K1300GT ó 2018 R1200GS
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  4. #4
    Registered User barryg's Avatar
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    I got the oem tank bag for my RS and it worked well for me. I also found that the added insert made the bag too tall. I added small bags designed to wear around your waist now used around the tank bag as auxillary pockets for stuff. Worked for me. 90% of the time I rode my RS I was wearing my one piece Aerostitch Roadcrafter, it had so many accessory pockets that the suit became my place to carry my little road junk.

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    There was a separate tailpiece/rear cowling available with slots already cut for the rear support arms on the rack, as cutting the slots the correct size and location was extremely difficult. IMO the BMW rear rack was not all that useful except as a tie-down point for the large waterproof gear bag I strapped on the rear seat. Quite a number of folks installed the actual rack plate from an R1100RT on the rack mounts of their RS. The plate was a direct bolt-on in replacement of the RS rack plate and was larger, with a turned-up tail that made a much more secure platform for luggage.

    A better rear rack is available from Hepco-Becker as shown here. I donít know if H-B furnishes a template piece for cutting the rear cowl, or whether their rack assumes you already have the rear rack support arms in placeóyou'd have to research that with them.

    And, you can always check with Givi or Shad to see if the offer a topcase and mounts to fit the R1100RSL, or see if a case is still available from BMW or in the used parts market.

    There is also a small cubby space available under the rear cowl-big enough for a tire repair kit, that sort of thing.

    HTH,
    DeVern

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    Thanks!

    There was a separate tailpiece/rear cowling available with slots already cut for the rear support arms on the rack, as cutting the slots the correct size and location was extremely difficult. IMO the BMW rear rack was not all that useful except as a tie-down point for the large waterproof gear bag I strapped on the rear seat. Quite a number of folks installed the actual rack plate from an R1100RT on the rack mounts of their RS. The plate was a direct bolt-on in replacement of the RS rack plate and was larger, with a turned-up tail that made a much more secure platform for luggage.

    A better rear rack is available from Hepco-Becker as shown here. I donít know if H-B furnishes a template piece for cutting the rear cowl, or whether their rack assumes you already have the rear rack support arms in placeóyou'd have to research that with them.

    And, you can always check with Givi or Shad to see if the offer a topcase and mounts to fit the R1100RSL, or see if a case is still available from BMW or in the used parts market.

    There is also a small cubby space available under the rear cowl-big enough for a tire repair kit, that sort of thing.

    HTH,
    DeVern
    THANKS! Thatís exactly what I was looking for. I especially appreciate the links! That made me aware of new sources for gear. I have the tank bag coming. The rack seems to be on back order at all vendors.

  7. #7
    Registered User barryg's Avatar
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    I used the BMW RT rear rack. Did so knowing that I would eventually add the RT trunk; which I did. The RT rack has the duck tail on the end. It's part of the design to hold the trunk. But even as just a rack, sans trunk I think it holds gear better with that lip. It just helps secure the soft luggage bags and other gear you haul. I added all that back around '96-'98

  8. #8
    Registered User barryg's Avatar
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    Looking back that seems like a lot of work. Seems I was constantly adding stuff to that bike. GS hand grip guards, heated grips, head light glass cover, fender extensions, after market shocks, exhaust systems, flip a lever, grip covers. I guess I was a sucker for adding stuff. I'm older, wiser, way more mature now. Would I do it again, yea maybe, possibly, yep no doubt.

  9. #9
    Registered User 6322's Avatar
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    Once you figure things out, no problem with gear storage. What others have said with the RT rack (bigger than the standard RS rack), standard BMW bags. I'm not a fan of a hard trunk as it limits loading options on the rack. Bungie buddies on top of the bags allow sleeping bags and pads to be packed on top of bags. BMW tank bag for smaller, lighter items. Under the seats, tire repair kit, spare headlamp bulb and spare alternater belt. In the way back under the seat, a set of spare bulbs and fuses for all lights on the bike as well as additional tools with stock tools. When traveling two up, you just learn how to be efficient with space, and over time you find compact gear.

    IMG_0092.JPG

    Two up and with two weeks worth of gear including camping gear and camp chairs. We've since acquired compact sleeping pads and chairs so traveling now with much less than in the photo.

    IMG_0091.JPG

    Traveling solo.
    Last edited by 6322; 08-05-2020 at 02:24 AM.
    Gary Phillips - #6322
    Wildland Firefighter, Retired, Riggins, ID
    Heartland Moto Locos BMW Riders
    '77 R100/7 Dirt Hack, '83 R80ST, '85 K100RS w/EML, '93 K1100LT, '00 R1100RS

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    Thanks All

    Thanks for all the input. I guess the answer is *not* to take a Dremel to the interior surfaces of the fairing 😀. I added a luggage rack. What a pain retrofitting the internal support and getting a new top tail piece with the cut outs. But thatís complete. Iím not a fan of tail trunks (from my Gold Wing days) but Iím thinking thatíll be next.
    I appreciated the links to available sissy bars, but $350 a pop is just offensively high, IMO.

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