Plastic Over Fiberglass | Sinister Industries Bag And Fender Install - Hot Bike Baggers Magazine
01. As John told us why PPO/PA plastic is far superior to fiberglass, he stood on one of the bags about to be installed on to the Road King. John's not a little guy and after about 10 minutes, once he stepped off of it, it went right back into shape.
02. Here are the ABS-style bags made of PPO/PA plastic, the same stuff that Harley makes its stock bags out of. They are super strong yet lightweight. They come in a black plastic finish. These bags use the existing H-D hardware, bolt on the same way as stock bags, and can be used with a stock fender.
03. Here are the Hot Rod Saddle Bag lids. The lids are two-piece and plastic injection-molded. They aren't ABS, but like John said, it's not the lid that needs the strength.
04. Here is the stretched rear fender cover. The fender is hand-laid fiberglass and installs over the stock fender. This one is for '00-09 bikes, and there is a replacement fender for '99-and-newer.
05. Here is the '04 Road King we used for the makeover; you can see the stock bags and fender. The only upgrade is the aftermarket lights installed in the bags.
06. In no time John had the seat, side covers, and bags off the bike, then he removed the rear wheel to get the inside lower rear mounting bolt for the fender. He then removed the framerail covers and the fender guard.
07. The fender kit comes with a mounting bracket to replace the framerail-to-bag hanger support (arrow).
08. Next, the license plate, the bumper, and the taillight were removed to make room for the fender cover.
09. To get the fender ready for the install, John needed to drill out the pre-dimpled spots in the fender for the rear mounting bolts.
10. Next, the taillights needed to get installed. First the centerline of the fender was marked, then using a small piece of 1-inch pipe as a spacer, both sides were marked as the center of each filler panel.
11. The taillight template was then taped to the fender as a reference point for the holes. He started with a small pilot hole then worked the size up to the 1/4-inch hole needed.
12. Next, using an air saw the fender was cut to fit the LED taillight bracket. With a file, all the edges were filed smooth.
13. This is how clean the light looked once the cover was bolted in place.
14. The LED bar bolts to the cover through the back of the fender.
15. Next, the LED license plate frame was lined up and the mounting holes were drilled. Once the fender was in place, the plate and frame got installed with the top two bolts used to mount the fender.
16. The fender was placed on the bike over the stock fender and lined up with the two front mounting bolts. Once the fender was in place, it didn't interfere with any of our stock H-D gear such as the sissybar or Tour-Pak.
17. Next, the stock lid hardware was removed and relocated onto the new Hot Rod lids starting with the inner plate and locks, then the outer latch covers.
18. John then installed the hook-latches to the lids with new rivets.
19. To make sure that the lids sealed well and tight, he installed new lid gaskets.
20. John installed a set of his Sinister Industries saddlebag lid straps. These replace the stock H-D straps.
21. Once the fender was bolted on, John placed the seat back on the bike to create the seat bolt location. The fender has a steel plate inlaid to the fiberglass, so all John needed to do was drill and tap a hole for the seat bolt.
22. Next, the new ABS stretched bags were installed and lined up with the fender the same way stock bags would mount, with the twist-and-lock hardware. Just so it didn't look odd as we rode home, John took a can of black rattle-can paint to match up with the bags.
23. A set of full fitted Pimp Liner made of crushed velvet diamond tuck padding was placed into the bags, though not glued in place until the bags are painted. You can see how cool they will look once they get permanently mounted. They are available in black, grey, and red.
24. There you have it, from start to finish the bike was done and rideable in just under five hours. If we didn't keep stopping the guys at Sinister to take photos, the install could have been done in less time. Now all we need is to get a set of true dual exhaust pipes.
25. One more shot of the fenders and bags installed.
Bag and Fender
Most of the time we hear a lot of claims of how good something is or how easy it is to install. Sometimes it's true but most of the time we come across something wrong. It takes more work and time than planned, fitment is not right, or some fab work is needed. So when we called John Shope, owner of Phoenix-based Sinister Industries, about his Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) bags, he said they were so good they could be sent right to the painter, with no bodywork needed. He also said that the rear end, bags, and fender could be installed in about four hours start to finish. We told him we wanted to see it for ourselves by riding a stock bike out to his shop in the a.m. and leaving the same day with a new custom-looking rear end. John asked what day and time. It's a 370-mile trip to John's shop, so about a six hour ride. We headed out at 4 in the morning, also known as the butt-crack of dawn.
It was a nice ride out through the hot desert and by the time we got to the shop at 11, John was just pulling a finished bike off the lift to make room for us. We asked why he went with ABS bags. He said if Harley was doing it with its bags, it must be a good thing. Even though the cost to make the bags is a lot higher, John was set on giving his customers the best for the money. So his ABS-style bags are made of PPO/PA (Polyphenylene Oxide) plastic, so every bag is consistent, easy to install, and fits without any problem. What is PPO plastic you ask? It's a raw polymer that is naturally opaque and demonstrates superior high-performance properties. Advantages of PPO plastic include high strength, high heat distortion resistance, outstanding hydrolytic stability, resistance to stress cracking, resistance to weathering, excellent chemical resistance, no bodywork needed, and they're super lightweight..
ABS Style 4-inch Stretched SaddleBags
Hot Rod SaddleBag Lids
Curved LED License Plate Frame
Oval Integrated LED
SaddleBag Lids strap
John Shope's Sinister Industries