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Extra Fuel Storage aboard the Bonnie

When traveling by motorcycle it is handy to have a stove in camp to make breakfast and coffee before packing up and getting back on the road in the mornings. I have a MSR Dragonfly stove which folds and stores compactly. This stove is very handy because it can burn a few different kinds of fuel, including unleaded gasoline. This eliminates the need to carry and store a specialty fuel just for the stove and allows you to use the stove fuel in case you run out of gas on the bike.

MSR makes very robust fuel bottle in three different sizes that work with the Dragonfly. To get any meaningful use from the fuel bottle in case of running out of fuel on the bike, it needs to be big enough to give you sufficient range to find a gas station. MSR's largest bottle is 30 ounces, or roughly a quarter of a gallon. Two of these bottle gives me an extra range of around 20 miles on my Bonneville.

You still have to carry that extra gas somewhere. Luckily, via a thread on, I found a nice solution for carrying the bottles without the need to take up room in the bags. I found the Topeak “Modula Java Bike Cages” online at Campmor. This is an adjustable bottle holder that, adjusted to its full size, holds the MSR 30 ounce bottle securely. I bought two.

Still, I had to come up with a way to attach these holders to the bike. I found a good place on the passenger peg struts that is out of the way of my feet when on the pegs and clear of and obstructions. I usually tour alone so use of the pegs was not a consideration. I eventually plan to add crash bars to the bike, so the inside of those may also work as an attachment point, but for now this location suits me well.

I have been a woodworker for a long time so I naturally thought of wood as a suitable material from which to fashion a mount. (This also could be done by bending bar stock to fit around the struts.) I chose a piece of mahogany to use for the mounts. Mahogany is easy to work and has the added benefit of being rot resistant. I traced the angles of the struts on the piece of wood and cut and carved channels which would wrap around them, but which extend just short of the back side of the tubes. Then I took a piece of bar stock to act as a clamp on the back. I spray painted all this black to make it less noticeably on the bike. This assembly is held to the frame via stainless bolts inserted in the holes of the holders, through the block of wood, and out the back and secured with locknuts. On the back of the bar and in the tube channels I glued some foam to keep the mount from scratching the pain on the frame.

This picture shows the holder mounted on the Bonnie's frame.


The disassembled holder mount


Profile view


The Dragonfly stores in a small space in its own bag. Here it is in its bag, along with the fuel bottle valve, windscreen, and extra burners. The pencil provides scale showing the small size of the stored stove.


The Dragonfly unfolded and ready for use



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