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I just bought a vn800b, and the prior owner tossed in a pair of soft leather saddlebags from willie and max for free.

I've never had saddlebags, but always wanted some. I know that they can and perhaps should be mounted under the seat with a proper bracket that prevents it from rubbing against the paint, etc, however, I was wondering if it could also just be tossed over the back seat without a bracket?

Is this safe? Is this done? He didn't have any bracket for it, and I'm not sure I want to have it on all the time anyway, so kinda wondering if this would be ok.

Obviously, if I have my wife on the back sitting on it, it's probably safe, but without someone sitting on it, are there any additional precautions this would require? Perhaps an extra bungee cord across it or something?

Does anyone else do this?
 

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Well, you're right that most people put them under the seat and use brackets. I've seen them thrown over the top. I'm honestly not sure how much damage they will do to the paint. You could try it a little while and watch for damage. Yes I would personally feel better if I had them secured with a bungy cord, especially if they're light. You did say they were soft? Might get away with it. You can buy brackets fairly in-expensively. Re-painting the rear fender is going to cost probably $300 or more unless you've got skills or a good friend in the business.
If you try it, let us know how it works out. If I'm wrong, I don't want to give bad advice twice.
 

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I use River road throw overs on my 800B and haven't noticed any damage on the seat or the bags cover the paint. My bags came with straps to secure it to the frame but I picked up saddlebag supports on eBay that have a peace of mind value for me. I don't remember what I paid for them. If you can wait I think you'll get them for a reasonable price. FWIW I would secure them under the seat a 10 mm wrench is all you need to remove them when you're done.

Ron
 
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