|GIVI E21s packed in popcorn, paper and plastic.|
GIVI offers a large selection of locking, plastic luggage for many popular motorcycles. Sharing a standard mounting system, GIVI cases from 21 to 52 liters in size may be used as top-cases or side-cases. Soft luggage is also available. I chose the small and affordable GIVI E21 MonoKey side-cases for my 2002 BMW F650GS. Here is how the installation went.
The cases and frames, or tubular holders as GIVI calls them, arrived in separate cartons in good condition. Instructions were, shall we say, sparse but adequate. Not being mechanically inclined and stopping to take pictures, even I was able to get the job done in less than two hours. Others may be able to knock it off in an hour.
|Instructions, sort of.|
The GIVI mounting system is elegant and makes good use of the sturdy rear foot peg brackets, which are hollow tubes on the inside. An expansion collet and mandrel locks up in the tube to provide a strong attachment point for the side frame.
|Expansion collet and mandrel fit into rear foot peg brackets.|
Where the expansion groove was cut in the collets I received, the corners were bent slightly and had to be straightened with pliers to receive the mandrels. I used an adjustable spanner on the flat of the collet while I used a 13mm wrench to turn the M8X35 bolt into the mandrel, drawing it about half way into the collet, then inserted the assembly into the foot peg bracket.
|Detail of foot peg with collet installed.|
Holding the flange of the collet with Channel Lock pliers, I finished tightening the mandrel with the wrench (there is not enough room for a socket) and then removed the bolt.
|Collar fits in side-panel.|
Next, I popped off the escutcheon from the exhaust panel, backed out the fastener with the T45 Torx wrench (the big one in the F650GS toolkit), inserted the collar provided by GIVI and used the original washer. Then I inserted the tab of the side frame under the panel and using a 5mm hex bit turned down the M8X25 Allen hex bolt provided by GIVI. It is slightly longer than the factory Torx bolt.
|Side frame bolts up neatly to inside of rear foot peg.|
Then I again inserted the M8X35 bolt through the side frame and into the mandrel and collet assembly in the foot peg and ran it down with the 13mm wrench. Moving to the rear end, the rear frame bolts securely to the bracket behind the brake light with M8X20 Allen hex bolts using a 5mm hex bit. An M6X16 Allen hex bolt connects the rear frame to the left side frame with a 4mm hex bit. Repeat for the right hand side. Tighten everything down.
|Frames are elegant and strong.|
The two cases had matching locks that open with one key and each case came with two keys, four keys all together. The molded cases slide over two fittings on the side frames and snap over the upper fitting. To release the case from the frame with the lid closed, press down on the red button with the key in the half way position or with the lid open, press on the red inner latch. Carrying handles in the top of the cases make them easy to tote into your motel room, if desired.
|Tools used for the job.|
When the dust had cleared, I had two small washers left over and had to scrounge up two large washers from my junk can. Other than that and what might have been lost in translation I am very pleased with the GIVI side-cases. If you plan to remove the side frames when you are on the road for any reason, 4mm and 5mm Allen wrenches and a 13mm wrench would need to be added to an F650GS tool kit. The collets are out of the way and could be left in place.
|F650GS with GIVI side-cases|
The E21 cases are the smallest GIVI offers. They are not too wide for everyday commuting yet large enough to swallow a gallon of milk and other groceries and should prove adequate for most riders for weekend trips or two-week tours. If you do decide to ride to Tierra Del Fuego, you can use the existing frame and replace the E21s with E41s.
|BMW F650GS looking for adventure.|
Competitive pricing, lightweight, rock-solid mounting and a flexible system of locking cases make GIVI motorcycle luggage worthy of serious consideration. I am looking forward to many adventures with mine.
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