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Discussion Starter #1
I've been meaning to upload a couple pictures for a while now, but haven't found the time to sit down and write a post here. Just been too busy riding! :D (and working, d'oh). :honda

I invested in a set of the Honda OEM saddlebag mounts and matching bags which were designed and advertised for the CB500F. It looks like Honda used the same frame and mounting points for the CBR500R, so all of the bolts lined up nicely with the factory mounting equipment.

The saddlebag stays are a nice powder coated matte gray/black finish. They replace the factory passenger grab handles and have a set of handles built into the tubing (see pictures attached). They're a pretty beefy set of mounting points, bolting to the upper frame, the passenger footpeg mounting points, and then a cross member goes between the stays. The hardware is definitely beefy, once it is bolted down and tightened, it doesn't have any flexing or looseness to it.

Much the same can be said about the saddlebags. They are in a sort of flat black finish, ABS plastic with four rubber-lined mounting points. The saddlebags have a full-length rubber gasket and appear to be mostly waterproof. The bags sit on top of the stays and are locked in place with a nice stainless steel metal latch. Each saddlebag has its own locking cylinder to keep your belongings safe, as well as serving as a lock/release for the saddlebags to the mounting hardware. The cylinders have another nice touch, they come with a keying kit so you don't have to rely on the dealer to set up the cylinder. It comes with a couple dozen pins and instructions which lets you use your OEM key for the saddlebags. Really nice touches for the saddlebags.

Capacity for the bags is good, but not excellent. The saddlebags will not fit a full-face helmet, but they have more than ample capacity for a backpack, two sets of boots, or a combination of smaller luggage and contents. I've taken the bike on about a dozen trips since I've had them and found they hold the contents of approximately 2 backpacks worth. Plus, there is still room on the passenger seat to mount an additional bag and strap it down with bungee cords. I might try the Honda OEM topcase down the line, but right now, the saddlebags have more than ample storage for day trips.

Awesome stuff if you are looking to turn your bike into a sport-tourer. Its nice being able to toss stuff in the bags, lock them, then ride away, no backpack required :D
 

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Thanks for sharing your experience and opinion as well as clear photos of how they look. I believe I will be sticking with the backpack for now because I like the look of the bike without rear cargo set ups.
 

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Nice panniers mate.
Could you take some pics of the mounts?
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Hello friends :) Uploaded a ton of new pictures. All of the mounting hardware, a couple closeups of the lock mechanism, and a picture of the side case when its open. The case was dirty when I took the picture, haven't had the time (or interest, lol) in cleaning them every time I put my spare boots in the case.

As far as capacity goes, full helmet not quite :( Tried to slip my helmet in the case at some interesting angles, even with the face-shield down/off, still no luck. You'd probably need to go with something even larger for side cases, or probably a top case would have even more room.
 

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Good Photos. I really like the look of the side panniers do you mind if I ask how much they cost? also do you feel any difference while riding do they cause any drag.

Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Good Photos. I really like the look of the side panniers do you mind if I ask how much they cost? also do you feel any difference while riding do they cause any drag.

Thanks.
Thanks mate :) IIRC, the saddlebag mounts were $300.00 with the new key cylinders and re-keying hardware and the saddlebags themselves were $500.00 for the pair. Shipping cost included, in US dollars.

Once the bags are on the bike and locked down, you don't even feel them when you're riding. Absolutely zero wobble, the hardware is definitely locked down, doesn't cause any issues with riding. Doesn't seem to affect gas mileage either, I haven't seen a drop since I installed them and put a few tanks through the bike.
 

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Wow 800 dollars! however I have to say they do look amazing and well worth every penny or dime depending on where you live. I will have to save some cash but will definitely be investing in these. Thanks for your reply.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Wow 800 dollars! however I have to say they do look amazing and well worth every penny or dime depending on where you live. I will have to save some cash but will definitely be investing in these. Thanks for your reply.
Well, for my last bike, I bought a set of inexpensive soft-fabric saddlebags, I think they were Chase Harper with some kind of 1680D ballistic nylon. They were supposedly weather and anti-UV treated, but I couldn't even get 1 season out of them. I only left my bike out a day or two during the week when I didn't have time/energy to properly stow it away in the garage. After one year, the bags were entirely not useable. Way too much fading on the fabric, even the black paint on the zippers and tags were faded out. The bags didn't seem extraordinarily good or bad out of the box, they just didn't have any lasting qualities whatsoever. I think I paid $150.00 with the cost of shipping for them.

So for my shiny Honda CBR500R, I decided to spend a little more and get something quality instead of cheaping out :) Better spending a chunk of change for high-quality bags, rather than a smaller amount for a piece of junk.
 

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Starsdawn5, do you know if there is a kit that will allow mounting both the sidecases and the topcase from Honda? I like your setup a lot. Well done!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Starsdawn5, do you know if there is a kit that will allow mounting both the sidecases and the topcase from Honda? I like your setup a lot. Well done!
Thanks bro :D

To the best of my knowledge, you need 2 separate types of mounting hardware for the sidecases and the topcase. IE, I'm pretty sure the topcase requires a flat mounting spot above the rear fairing (wouldn't want to scratch that up).
 

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Do you have the part numbers? I see these bags have an optional colored insert... very interesting. Getting tired of waiting on Givi.
 

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Thanks for posting these. Hadn't seen any CB500s with the luggage yet, and as a spoiled hard luggage guy I can't go back. Cost is in line with what I paid for Givi V35 cases and racks that I put on my 650R and FZ6.
 

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Thanks mate :) IIRC, the saddlebag mounts were $300.00 with the new key cylinders and re-keying hardware and the saddlebags themselves were $500.00 for the pair. Shipping cost included, in US dollars.

Once the bags are on the bike and locked down, you don't even feel them when you're riding. Absolutely zero wobble, the hardware is definitely locked down, doesn't cause any issues with riding. Doesn't seem to affect gas mileage either, I haven't seen a drop since I installed them and put a few tanks through the bike.
Are they now keyed to match the bike's key? that would be nice. My Givi bags on the other bike won't ever match that key.
 

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Looks like a great fit for the R. Do you know why Honda doesn't list this setup as an accessory for the R model?? If this is in fact a bolt on, I'm gonna do it. My last two bikes were BMW's w/bags. They are too handy to not have.
 
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