Harley Davidson Tour Pak - Introduction
In 2008 we started doing longer trips on the bike. The lack of lockable storage became an issue. While I could have lived with using the sissy bar pack, I was never real happy with it. I wanted a fully dressed tour bike. So after a trip we took through Alberta, Montana, and British Columbia I decided to do a popular modification to the Nomad, I added the H-D Tour Pak.
Many people have bought these on eBay and found great deals. I could not find a deal on one, in fact people on eBay were going crazy, paying full retail (and in a few cases more) for a used Tour Pak. I looked at Premeux products as well. They offer a Tour Pak clone painted to match your Nomad, but decided to buy a brand new Tour Pak from Latus Harley Davison in Gladstone, Oregon. I found their pricing to be the best and had excellent customer service. I have nothing but the highest marks for the purchase through them. I ordered Black Pearl after reading one persons account that the Vivid Black was not a great match to the factory black on the Nomad. I was very concerned when I saw the Tour Pak, but once on the bike, it does not look as far off as it did in the box. It is not a perfect match by any means, but looks not too bad considering the obvious manufacturer difference.
The trunk rack from Scootworks was required as well. Some people mount smaller trunks to standard luggage racks, but they do not have the strength to hold a full size trunk. That left me with two options, build my own rack, or purchase one made for the Nomad. I chose the purchase route, not because the rack is overly complex, but without a better compliment of fabrication equipment I was not confident I would be able to create a rack that I was happy with. There are really two companies that make these trunks, Scootworks and Wompus. I chose the Scootworks after reading that it seemed to set the trunk a bit lower than the Wompus. Depending on your requirements the Wompus may suit you better. From what I can see they are both quite similar in their construction.
Installation begins with removing the saddlebags from the bike. Then the stock backrest and passenger grab rail assembly. This is done by removing the four bolts holding it in place. After the backrest is removed, you can then remove the nut at from the top of each shock and the washers. The washers are no longer required, the rack will act as the spacer in place of the washer, so I zip tied them to the backrest so they would not get lost should I decided to remove the trunk at some point.
I fitted the rack over the two shock bolts first, holding the rack almost straight up at the back end. Then I carefully lowered the rack into place. I had to spread the rack a bit to get it completely in place though. Once it was basically in place I put the original rear bolts back in on each side, using the washers provided with the rack to prevent scratching the rack. I then put the front two in, again using the supplied washers. I then replaced the top nut on both shocks and tightened the rack down. Pretty easy install overall.
The actual Tour Pak install was a bit more involved, only because placement is key and holes need to be drilled in the rack to properly mount the trunk. I started by taking a piece of non slip matting (similar to a tool box liner) and placing it on the rack. I then carefully placed the Tour Pak on the rack approximately where I thought it should sit. This next step is the most important. I had my wife come and site on the bike while I held the Tour Pak in place. What I immediately found is that my placement was way too far forward for her liking. I shifted the Tour Pak back until she was comfortable, then moved it forward a fraction of an inch, then back a fraction of an inch to make sure that position was the one she wanted. I carefully held the Tour Pak in place while she got off the bike and measured the distance from the front edge of the rack to the front edge of the Tour Pak. Next, I removed the Tour Pak and the non slip material and placed the trunk back on trying to center it by measuring the distance on each side. This is not exact, but I wanted it close. I also measured the same distance from the front of the rack to the front of the Tour Pak. Once I had it place, I opened the lid of the Tour Pak and marked the 4 holes that were still on the rack surface. The Tour Pak extends at 8" past the end of the rack in my case. I again removed the Tour Pak and then measured the distance between the two front mounting holes. They are 10" center to center, and the rack is 15" wide. I marked the center of the rack, then marked 5" from each side of center to get the correct placement for the mounting holes. I then checked the front measurement to make sure both holes were the same distance from the front of the rack. Satisfied that the placement was good, I drilled two holes in the rack.
Now that I had mounting holes, I placed the Tour Pak back on the bike and inserted two bolts into the mounting holes and tightened them finger tight. I then checked the measurements with the Tour Pak on the bike. All was good, so I marked the back two mounting holes. I removed the Tour Pak and checked the measurements again to insure that all was right and drilled the back two holes. At this point I elected to place a piece of the non slip material on the rack, then placed the Tour Pak on the rack and bolted it down. The Tour Pak is now installed!
Here is the competed Tour Pak. It is mounted, and the backrest, spoiler, luggage rack and lights are all installed.
Update 04/11/2009 - We had the Nomad out for a 2-up ride a few weeks ago. We did around 150 miles and one thing was clear, the position of the Tour Pak that seemed comfortable sitting in the garage, was NOT comfortable for Shelley. I ended up moving the Tour Pak back another 1.5" to help. We tried it for a few miles and it seems better, time will tell. I think the one key is to mount the Tour Pak so the back rest give the pillion about the same angle as the stock backrest did. I also think I was too worried about the position of the Tour Pak on the Scootworks rack, instead of the actual position of the Tour Pak.
Harley Davidson CB Antenna - Tour Pak Mount back to top
When I put on the Tour Pak it unfortunately eliminated the license plate mount CB antenna that was on the bike for the J&M CB 2003 unit. The Tour Pak was wide enough that the antenna would not clear the side. I could get close to clearing the side, but even if I could the antenna would likely hit the Tour Pak while riding when it starts whipping around, not to mention that it would look out of place. I did not want this $60 antenna hitting the $900 Tour Pak or the uneven appearance, so that was out.
The Tour Pak I ordered has the AM/FM antenna mount on the right side, and I figured that Harley should have something that mounts to the left side of the Tour Pak. I found H-D part #76415-06, which is a CB Antenna Kit mounts an antenna on a Tour Pak for '06-'08 FLHX and FLTR models.
This kit includes everything, including the antenna. There are a couple issues with this setup though. One thing that is a bit confusing is the loading coil that comes with the kit. When mounted the liner I bought no longer fit so I had to modify it a bit. The coil is mounted inside the Tour Pak in the left rear. My liner had no provisions for anything there. The second thing is the connector at the antenna and at the matching cable end are Motorola style connectors, the same style as a automobile AM/FM radio antenna, and the other end of the extension cable is a smaller screw together connector, that is not even close to a match for the J&M. I thought that this was money wasted at this point. I searched and searched for an adapter to convert from the Harley cable to the J&M but came up empty. I finally stumbled across something at Sierra Electronics when I was looking for a CB for my wife's Virago. The cable was a 6' PL259 connector to a female Motorola connector. This removes the Harley cable that came with the kit, and allows the J&M to connect to the H-D antenna kit. The only issue with this cable is that 6' is barely long enough, I had to carefully route the cable to the back to get enough length. I will likely look for a short extension (12" - 24") at some point just to be safe.
Mounting the antenna kit is a bit nerve racking to be honest. You are drilling holes that are not easily fixable in the Tour Pak, and this was a brand new Tour Pak. I put masking tape on the right rear corner of the Tour Pak and started placing the mount on the bike. I measures, then measured again, then looked at each side to try and match the mount location as best as I could with the left side mount. When satisfied with the placement I drilled the two mounting holes. I actually drilled them based on the size of bolts that would go through the hole, the instructions listed drilling a much larger hole.
The antenna kit above comes with a 48" whip style antenna. I have heard stories of these breaking off while riding and I thought that was a bit dangerous. Also I really do not like the long whip style antenna. I decided to get the 19" "shorty" style antennas. The part numbers I ordered were 76388-08 for the AM/FM antenna and 76386-08 for the CB antenna.
The kit and antennas I ordered all arrived from Surdyke Harley Davidson. They seemed to have the best pricing and reasonable shipping charges as well. The AM/FM antenna went on the Tour Pak mount with no issues, but the CB antenna would not thread onto the CB antenna mount. I checked and rechecked the part numbers to make sure they were all for '06 to '08 models and the part numbers all check out, but it would not fit. I ended up taking the mount out to the local H-D dealer (would love to buy local, but the cost is twice what I paid online here) to see if they had any ideas. They pulled an '08 antenna off the shelf, and same thing, would not thread on. They then pulled a '09 antenna off the shelf and tried it, bingo, went on with no problems! I have no idea why the '08 would not fit, but beware before you order, there seems to be something up with these parts.