Nothing can compare to the superior functionality of waterproof, lockable hard bags. They may not add to the aesthetic beauty of the machine, but many of us have learned the art of compromise. That’s why, when our long-term Triumph Tiger showed up buck naked, we decided to mount SHAD’s newest top case, the SH48, on her.
Armed with only a couple of wrenches, mounting the case support plate to the Tiger was a simple, 20-minute job. SHAD cases come with a universal mounting plate, which allows you to mount to a flat rack. But for $39, we obtained the Tiger 800-specific mounting kit, which serves as a tool-less, quick-connecting point for the top case. The case locks to the plate, but the lid can be left either locked or unlocked.
Opening the SH48 is easy. Just insert the key, turn it 90 degrees, press inward, and the handle pops out. Then squeeze the hidden tab under the area where the handle resided. You can also remove the case from the mount plate via the handle without opening the lid.
Large enough to fit two full-face helmets, the SH48 measures 61″ x 31″ x 46″, weighs a little over 8 pounds, and holds up to 17.6 pounds. Three elastic support bands meet in the middle and keep loads from rolling around inside the case. We also installed a double backrest for $55 more. Fitting one to the lid and one to the base requires light drilling.
Mounted, the SH48 looks bulky, but riding with the case on the Tiger didn’t alter the ride feel much at all. I could only see the corners of the case in the mirrors, but I did feel that my bright vest was obscured from the back by the case. But for increased visibility, SHAD offers a brake light accessory that’s integrated with the support bracket. Several colors and a new carbon-fiber look are also available.
Hard Data: SHAD, SH48, $289, 888/9-SHADUSA, www.SHADUSA.com
Product Evaluation by Tricia Szulewski
Story as published in the September/October issue of RoadBike magazine.