Wolfman Explorer Lite Tank Bag
Wolfman quality. Lacks features
Before I get on the actual review, if you have read any of my other reviews, you will know that I am very particular about products. I write from the perspective of what I expect and need from a product.
This is not my first Wolfman product, so I am used to the quality of the product in terms of durability and production standards.
It is very easy to fit onto the 2007 BMW Dakar, and positions well on the faux tank. I had to slide it all the way back towards to seat so that it does not interfere with the handlebars. It sits right at the front edge of the seat, out of the way of my body.
It is not too big or too small for my liking.
I like the external pocket on the side facing the rider.
Internal zip up compartment is nice.
4 point mounting system keeps the bag in place well. It is pretty much set in place. Even if I load it with heavier items, I seriously doubt it will move at all, even on rough surfaces.
The not so good.
My previous tank bag was a Cortech Super 2.0 12 liter. In terms of overall features the Cortech bag beats the Wolfman hands down IMO. Here's why...
- the Wolfman is less rigid and will droop when empty. The Cortech is more rigid.
- the Wolfman has no pen holders or smaller pockets on the inside for small loose items.
- The internal soft lining of the Cortech is much better than the Wolfman. Better in terms of soft padding and material, and better in that it is red. Sounds stupid, but it makes it easier to find small loose items in less than bright sunlight situations.
So why did I buy the Wolfman then?
A few reasons:
1. The 4 point mounting system. The Cortech just moved around too much with the 3-point system it has. I do quite a bit of off-road riding, so needed something that would stay put a little better.
2. The Cortech map pocket on the top is too small to fit anything other than a sticky note. (Wolfman is not that much better I discovered to my dismay).
3. Wolfman is expandable.
The Wolfman map pocket is too short (front to back) to fit a standard map when folded as maps are folded. Really? This is an obvious oversight. It should have just been made a little longer, even if it overlaps the actual bag length.
My overall opinion of the Wolfman is that it is over-priced for what it offers. Sure it will last, but would it be too much to ask to add some pen holders, a divider on the inside, and some smaller pockets?
Also - no rain cover included. The Cortech has a built in rain cover that tucks away nicely when not in use.
For this price I would have expected that. (Yes I did know beforehand that it lacked these features).
From the specs, it seems the Giant Loop has many more features than the Wolfman, but it is waaaaay overpriced IMO.
If you are not going to do a lot of offroad riding, and you don't need a map pocket. I would recommend the Cortech over this Wolfman. Quality of the Cortech is just as good, but the features far outshine the Wolfman.
August 21, 2014
Great fit on my '08 GS
I looked at a lot of tank bags before finally settling on this one. The reviews here helped and for the most part were accurate. It fits my BMW R1200 GS perfectly and adds some convenient storage for the small things that used to live in my pockets or the top case. I even carried my DSLR camera in it on a long trip out west. Even with the weight of that added, the bag gripped the tank snugly and didn't flop around or shift. The zippers are robust, work smoothly and the pulls are easy to grab with gloves on. The map pocket is just a bit too small but it only takes some creative folding to overcome this. I read some reviews that complained about it not being waterproof and that the rain cover should be included. I chose not to purchase the rain cover and instead, just sprayed it with silicone KIWI® Camp Dry® Heavy Duty Water Repellent and it did not leak one bit. Everything stayed dry inside. Even during a torrential rainstorm. I did purchase the x-straps which keep everything in place when you're not using the bag. They work well but it would be nice if they were included. This is a simple bag that does what it's supposed to do and does it well.
July 29, 2014
Quality Tank Bag
This is nothing fancy, but it seems well made and sturdy, all the zippers work well, it doesn't slide around on the bike, and is the size I was looking for. Couldn't be happier. Fits well on a 796. Wish it came with the xstraps, - bought those separately to keep the straps in place when the bag's off the bike.
June 24, 2014
Solid fit, excellent quality, great bag.
Solid fit, excellent quality, great bag!
Years ago when I first got my F650GS I was looking for a tank bag - I needed something durable, big enough to hold a ton of crud but not too bulky since I'm short and have short arms. I also felt like I wanted something that was specifically designed for my bike, I didn't want to deal with a bunch of straps and clasps. So, that pretty much narrowed things down to the Touratech. The fit was fine, but the bag was sloppy on the bike after a year or so of riding. This year I finally got fed up with it enough to start looking for another bag.
I decided on the Wolfman because it the dimensions were similar to my old bag. Upon arrival, I was instantly impressed with the quality of this bag. The material is heavy and sturdy, the zippers are smooth and easy to operate.
Installation was a breeze and just required the removal of the seat and maybe 15 minutes of looking for the right place to mount the straps and it was done.
I've now done 4 rides of about 500 miles each with this bag and I really love it. It stays perfectly planted on the tank even on rough dirt roads and fast twisty pavement. It holds everything I need without being too bulky.
My only two complaints are that the flap that covers the zipper is sort of tough to work with but seems to be loosening up with use, and it would be great if there was some quick way to loosen the straps then re-tighten them to make installation easier.
I can't say much about the durability yet, but the bag appears ready to go the long haul and hold up well to anything I can throw at it.
June 23, 2014
Great product that's solid.
This is a very well built tank bag that fits my HD XR1200 very well. It's constructed out of very solid materials like all of the Wolfman bags are. The underside material protects your tank from scratching while also being very grippy. The rest of the bag seems to be constructed of very heavy material. My clear helmet shield easily fits into the bag (with the added benefit of giving it some rigidity.)
My only complaint is that the map case isn't permanently removable. It's attached to the bag by velcro. The issue is that they put the hook side of the velcro on top of the bag so that when the map case is removed it leaves that VERY abrasive hook material exposed. Had the hook been put on the back of the map case instead of the loop material, this would not have been an issue. For me, the map case is completely unnecessary but due to the velcro orientation, I'm forced to keep it on at all times. It looks a little ridiculous on my urban commute.
None the less, if you're looking for a well constructed tank bag with enough space for any day trip you can imagine (maybe a little too much space for most commuters) that will give you years of reliable service, this is the bag for you.
June 23, 2014
I really like this bag. I use it on my 2008 KLR. Easy to install and pack full of supplies and gear. I do wish it had some more internal compartmentalization. Otherwise great bag, works great on my bike and for me...
June 9, 2014
Fit's good on me F800GS
I was on the fence between this and the Rainier, glad I went with the Explorer Lite, anything bigger then the lite will have to live on the back plate. Installation not bad at all, work's for me !
June 3, 2014
Awesome Tank Bag
Although I wish it had couple side pockets like the previous Touratech tank bag had.
Overall, I can not complain. The expand-ability by unzipping and lifting up is amazing. The 3 velcro across, holding the vinyl map holder is another plus. The inside has this nice compartment (zippered in a mesh like see-through screen) to hold small item(s) like wallet or phone is another plus.
Overall, this is a great tank bag. It's made by Wolf so you're guaranteed quality and long lasting. Just have to stop getting sun screen all over the bag when applying sun block lotion. User fail. Not Wolfman fail.
May 27, 2014