My duffel that I string onto my motorcycle luggage was always dropping over and cover my tail signal lights.
I wanted to avoid that and looking in the market, there weren't any racks for a duffel. Even if there was, Im sure it would cost a significant amount.
I decided then to make one myself out of an IKEA shelf insert.
Step 1: Gathering Your Tools and Materials
Tools that you will need
- Measuring tape or ruler
- A Clamp to hold the piece in place
- Power or Manual Drill
- A jigsaw or hacksaw
- A wood chisel/file
- Some beeswax or wood seal and a brush to apply it on.
- Sand paper
- Pencil for marking
Materials that you need
- HEMNES shelf (choose the length and width you need for your duffel, any shelf will do)
- 6-8 Screws (depending on your frame)
- 3-4 U bolts or Pipe mounts
Tip: Look at the "As Is" section of IKEA. there are often lots of loose ones selling for cheap. I manage to get a pine one at a discount this way.
Step 2: Measure Your Dimensions
First you need to measure the base of the duffel you are looking to support.
Flip the bag over and measure the length and width of the base.
Step 3: Cut the Board
With the measurements in hand, mark out the length you require on the HEMNES shelf with a ruler and pencil.
Using a jigsaw or handsaw, saw the board to the length you require.
Sand and smoothen out the edges
Step 4: Cut the Slots for the Straps
Most motorcycle duffels come with velcro straps underneath for securing the bag onto the bike. I decided to make slots for them to ensure they sit really well on this support plate. You can skip this step if your duffel does not have straps like mine.
Measure out the positions of the straps (they are usually symmeterical so you can just take dimensions from one side). Also measure the thickness of the straps.
Mark out the position of the straps on the board. You might also want to measure and mark the thickness of the straps to give you a visual guide.
Once its out marked out, fit the drill with a bit that is slightly larger than the thickness of the straps. This ensures your straps will fit in nicely.
Drill the slot out along the marking to make a slot in the board for the straps. You can use a chisel as well if you have one.
Once you have removed most of the material, use the file/sand paper to smoothen out the slot.
Repeat the steps above for the other slot.
Step 5: Protect Your Piece
As the board will be subject to the elements, I decided to use leftover beeswax from IKEA to protect it. You can use heavier duty lacquers or weather proofing if you require.
Brush the piece with beeswax, placing a generous amount on the cut edge and the slots.
Let it dry as per the recommendations on the tin and apply another coat.
Step 6: Mounting Onto the Rack
Its now time to mount your piece onto your rack. I removed the rack from my bike to make it easier to mount the board on but you could also do this whilst its still on the bike.
Mark out the positions of the bars of your rack onto the board
Support the rack so that it doesn't move.
Mark the position of where your U-bolts or Pipe brackets will be.
Drill pilot holes on where the screws will be.
Drill in the screws with the U-bolt or pipe bracket to secure the piece.
Step 7: Put Your Duffel On
Last step, strap your duffel and its ready to be used!