Not satisfied with a naked cruiser I immediately set about tweeking it a little to make it more suitable for longer trips away. To that end it would need some luggage, and possibly a screen if I was going to use it for holidays and/or motorcycle rallying.
As coincidence would have it, an ad on a local bulletin board was advertising some suitable bits and pieces. I ended up buying a brand-new sissy-bar/backrest that I could strap stuff to and hopefully not have it fall off the back, a spare set of unused silencers, and a curious leather tank bib with a pocket on it which may or may not come in useful for money for tolls etc. They had all been removed from a brand new bike and replaced with aftermarket parts. The owner had recently sold his bike on and was now clearing out the unnecessary bits he no longer had any use for. The silencers went into stock for future use and sissy-bar and tank bib were duly fitted. Looked good, I must admit.
Next up, I needed something to carry stuff in. As I have about six sets of decent hard panniers already, I first tried to find a fitting kit for some of these. Those available were extremely expensive and, more importantly, looked horrible when fitted to a cruiser. So, a rethink was in order.
In the end I settled for some soft canvas panniers which looked better and were relatively inexpensive. Although they are advertised as waterproof, I added a couple of small canoe dry-sacks to ensure the contents were kept dry. To keep them from fouling the rear wheel a set of guard rails were acquired. With everything fitted it gave me carrying capacity and still looked the part.
Now I was all ready for the bike’s first serious trip to Ireland in a couple of weeks.