- May 3, 2005
- Echo Beach
- R129, Leon Cupra 290, BMW R100
This something the ST13, and the 11 before it, have been very good at. Recent touring bikes are sporting much wider rear tyres, through necessity or fashion, which makes it much harder to tuck the panniers in and therefore the width as a whole grows which hinders filtering. Unfortunately my friend's hand may be forced soon, his ST11 doesn't have much life left in it (it was getting on when I sold it to him 9 years ago!) but nothing else is quite fitting the bill.The ST1300 has mirrors mounted lower than the handlebars that are very effective as “cat’s whiskers” when judging narrow gaps: if the mirrors will go through, then so will the rest of the bike. By contrast, the K1600’s mirrors are mounted on stalks and are above the ’bars and although the same principle of “if the mirrors fit the gap, then so will the rest of the bike” applies, it made it a little more difficult to judge the tighter gaps. On the subject of the bike’s width, I didn’t put a tape across it, but visually it looks a little wider than the Pan and the panniers are certainly slightly higher in relation to the seat which Angie found made the bike more difficult to get on and off.