Pack Animal crafts great-looking, weather-resistant, versatile saddlebags and other gear.
After an ache-inducing 2014 moto-camping trip in Washington's North Cascade Mountains, Jenny and Michael Linquist came to the conclusion that's launched a thousand entrepreneurial endeavors (and just as many eye rolls on Shark Tank): "There must be a better way."
The Linquist's problem was carrying gear, their solution was to team up with like-minded friends and build a better saddlebag. After picking up a couple of industrial sewing machines, the Linquists & Co. were set on their mission to craft "saddlebags made for motorcycle travel with classic styling and timeless materials that look great on any bike."
They have been producing each piece of gear themselves over the last year-plus. We here at RideApart find the DIY aspect of their project especially cool and compelling. And, speaking just for myself, the results look pretty great. Maybe it's my Seattle upbringing and therefore unapologetic homer-ism, but I'm definitely going to pick up a saddlebag.
The saddlebags are made from waxed twill and canvas paired with leather. They are weather-resistant and feature a leather back panel for against-the-bike protection.
The Tool Rolls are built similarly, and guarantee enough space "to carry the real tools you might need while traveling cross-country on a machine you love." Completely spread out, the tool roll is 22" wide by 11.5" long.
Per Pack Animal:
The saddlebags carry 26 quarts, or 6.5 gallons.
Fitting in the main compartment:
• a week’s worth of clothing
• a backpacker's supply of camping gear
• two six packs of your favorite and a few days worth of groceries
• a 15" laptop
• side pockets fit bottles up to 3.5" in diameter
• zippered pocket fits maps, bike registration, and other small flat items.
• front pocket is large enough for a book / phone / wallet / snack.
An interior divider also fits:
• a book or two
• sunglasses hard case
• wallet or business card carrier
• pens, pencils, or wrenches
Pack Animal products attach most easily to twin shock bikes. It's important to note that if you do not have a tubular frame design, you'll need a different way to attach the seat hardware. Contact Pack Animal for more info on that.
Also, be careful that the bags do not touch the exhaust as they will get burned.
So far, according to Pack Animal, the bags have been successfully tested on "vintage Japanese motorcycles, modern Triumphs, modern Harley-Davidson Sportsters, vintage BMW's, and vintage enduro bikes."
The bags attach to your bike using halter snaps that click onto d-rings on the bike mounting kit. The same halter snaps enable the transition from saddlebag to shoulder-strap messenger bag.
How to Get Involved
If you'd like to support Pack Animal (and/or pick up a bag for yourself), they are currently raising funds on (you guessed it) Kickstarter:
And check our their Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/packanimal/
PS: They're only about $7,000 from their goal, so act fast!
Photos Courtesy of Pack Animal.