Saddlebags increase carrying capacity on the 883R.
Harley-Davidson built the Sportster 883R motorcycles for sport and performance riding. Harley gave little consideration for carrying capacity on this bike as is commonly found on the larger cruiser and touring models. Purchase saddlebag bracket kits from Harley-Davidson or through aftermarket retailers. Brackets and bags bolt up easily to the frame without special tools or training.
1. Remove the rear strut bolt from one side of the fender with an Allen wrench and open-end wrench. Install the 5/16 x 3-inch bolt, narrow-slot button, 3/4-inch spacer and lock nut into the rear strut mount hole and tighten securely with an Allen wrench and open-end wrench.
2. Remove the front strut bolt from one side of the fender with an Allen wrench and open-end wrench. Install the 5/16 x 3-inch bolt, wide-lot button, 3/4-inch spacer and lock nut into the front strut mount hole and tighten securely with an Allen wrench and open-end wrench.
3. Support the back of the frame on a bike lift so that the rear wheel is elevated clear of the ground. Block up the rear wheel with wood blocks. Remove the lower shock mounting bolt, nut and washer with wrenches.
4. Install the saddlebag roller bracket onto the lower shock mount bolt. Rotate the roller bracket so that the teardrop is pointed down and the rollers are pointed to the rear of the bike. Torque the lower shock bolt between 30 and 50 pound-feet with a torque wrench. Repeat Steps 1 to 4 on the other side of the bike.
5. Open the bag lid and peel up the vinyl locking lever cover. Lift up on the lever and slide the rear bag mounting bracket onto the rear strut button. Push the front of the bracket onto the front strut button. Push the lever down until it snaps into position and locks the bracket into place. Push the vinyl lever cover down and close it securely with the hook-and-loop fastener.