The tank is too small. No way around it. It's fine when commuting and roaming around the countryside on the weekends. but any adventures that take place on the outskirts of civilization will soon have you wanting for a bigger tank. For now, I'm not interested in installing safari/rally tanks due to the cost and the limited actual use. For the occasional adventure ride an auxiliary fuel canister will suffice. I know Rotopax has an excellent product for this particular need, but I wanted to try something different just for the hell of it. Oh, and because the Rotopax solution is rather pricey ($ 85 for 1 gallon pack + mount). Kolpin makes something similar to Rotopax but according to internet wisdom the product is noticeably inferior to Rotopax. The containers some times leak and the mounting hardware is plastic instead of metal (like with Rotopax).
|Primus fuel bottle (0,6 l)|
Plan A was to buy 2 drink bottle holders that would presumably hold one 1 litre Primus fuel bottles each. That's only 40-50 kms of extended range, but I calculated that it would be enough to get me out of trouble if it came to that. Northern parts of the country don't have that many gas stations and some of the distances are a bit too close to the max fuel range with the standard tank.
I bought the drink bottle pouches because I didn't feel comfortable packing the bottles in the bags with other stuff such as food and presumably the pouches would give me several options for mounting the fuel bottles. After fiddling around with the pouches I came to the conclusion that another solution was needed. For the pouches to work the bike really should have luggage racks. There seemed to be no (elegant) way of mounting the pouches on the tail rack in a way that would satisfy me. I could get the bottles mounted just fine, but I didn't like how much I had to compromise with all the rest of the stuff as a result.
A friend of mine stumbled on a German site called www.fuelfriend.de/ that seemed to have a reasonably priced (14,95€ for 1,5 liter bottle) solution to the problem. The bottles are square shaped and have a groove in the middle for mounting straps. Two 1,5 liter bottles equal one 1 gallon Rotopax so the end result is the same as with one Rotopax, but price is less than half of the Rotopax set.
The build quality of the containers is very good.(as you would expect from a product made in Germany). I tested the containers with water and found no leaks. Subjecting the containers to hundreds of miles of vibration and bumps will be the true test, but everything seems good so far.
I ordered two different kind of nozzles for the containers,but I think I will only be packing the long one fro the upcoming trip.
I tied two containers together with a "dedicated" strap and attached the package to the rear rack with another strap. I wish the Nomadic rack had more mounting holes machined into it. It works fine as it is, but a few more would be much better as you almost always end up wishing you could have stuff mounted an inch or two the other direction. For now it seems I will have to loosen the mounting strap and move the containers a few inches back in order to get the tank cap open. Not a big deal since I will have to move the duffel bag out of the way each time too.
|FuelFriend tanks on KTM 690 Enduro R|
UPDATE [17.3.2015]After installing the RR racks and Perun moto rear rack the carrying capacity is greatly improved. I can now mount 4 FuelFriend cans very conveniently. 2 at each side on the RR racks and 2 on the rear rack. The extension plate comes in handy if you want to mount two on the rear rack.
For now I sill settle for 2 cans attached to the RR racks. This way I can get the weight of the extra fuel pretty low compared to mounting it on the rear rack. I'm also pretty confident that 2 cans will be enough for my needs anyway.
|FuelFriend mounted on a RR rack|
|One Fuel Friend on top and one on the side|