- Internal accessories
- Closure with key
- No support for protruding loads sign
- Locking with a key requires some attention
Suggested retail price: €662.00
November 22, 2020 – Living in a motorhome requires several sacrifices in terms of space. Living on Falkor, our 5.45 meter long motorhome, requires more. So, just a few months after we started our adventure, we enriched our stowage space with an external soft bag to be placed on the bike rack: the Fiamma Cargo Back for Carry Bike, which we immediately equipped with the Frame Cargo Back Kit. The latter is a rigid structure formed by aluminum tubes that allows the bag to maintain a parallelepiped shape.
The choice we made over a year ago was favored by the fact that we do not bring bicycles with us, and therefore we could (and still can) freely use the bike carrier as a loading tool, and it was dictated by the economic conditions of the time, which they did not allow us to face large extra expenses. In all we had spent €120. You can find our test of this product in this post and after 14 months we can say that it did its job, even if we were not fully satisfied. Above all, long-term winter storage in the soft bag is a problem, due to condensation and humidity.
A step forward
Now that we have superior economic possibilities, also thanks to the savings of living in a motorhome, we have taken the big step and granted ourselves a “real” luggage compartment: the Fiamma UltraBox 500, which is the largest among those designed for installation on bicycle racks. In addition to the problem of condensation and humidity, resulting in the creation of mold, the other reason we wanted such a large container is that in this way we can carry an electric scooter with us, a practical solution for short errands when you are out and about without having to move the vehicle or cover large distances on foot.
The biggest obstacle to overcome when evaluating a product like this is certainly the purchase price. Listed, the UltraBox 500 costs €662. We were able to find it online at the Cusmai dealer in Monza for €527, and we bought it there. The product was not immediately available and we had to wait about a month before having it, but we want to underline the courtesy of Cusmai’s customer service, which managed to get us to deliver the product to a different address than the one we had initially indicated (due to lockdown) responding promptly to our requests.
White ABS with rough finish
Despite its considerable size (it has a capacity of 500 liters, is 147 centimeters wide, 70 high and 53 deep), the luggage compartment is light: only 17 kilograms. Made of white ABS with a rough finish and semi-matte surface, it is very elegant. Together with the product is also supplied the kit that allows it to be fixed on the bicycle rack. We have the Fiamma Lift 77, a version with a winch that allows you to load it in a low position and then lift it higher on the rear wall of the camper. This allows access to Falkor’s rear locker. The three channels with which it is equipped constitute a perfect support for the luggage compartment.
What we did not expect to have to face was the drilling work: since the UltraBox is ultimately a universal container that can be adapted to any bike carrier, the fixing points can vary. Thus, the holes where to pass the screws must be made at the time of installation. It was not difficult, but we who were not equipped in the motorhome took advantage of the opportunity to purchase a cordless drill that is now proudly displayed among our technical equipment dedicated to do-it-yourself.
Horseshoe-shaped metal supports are passed behind the vertical tubes of the bike carrier and fixed inside the luggage compartment with as many self-locking nuts or, if you prefer a more practical installation to remove it if necessary, with “wing nuts” plastic material. A rubber washer and a steel plate positioned inside prevent vibrations and strengthen the attachment point.
The luggage compartment is already equipped with a fall protection net and two straps to secure the contents. Compared to the soft bag, the fact that the container opens from the base allows you to easily load and unload objects. Another advantage over the system we used previously is that the UltraBox is equipped with a double lock with keys, a solution that helps prevent theft. The thing we did not like is that you have to be very careful when locking it, because it is a bit too easy not to hook the striker, and therefore even turning the key the door does not lock: always check that it has closed properly.
The large white luggage compartment
Moving from the Cargo Box to the UltraBox, Falkor’s appearance has certainly improved. The large white luggage compartment (we could call it Moby Dick!) gives a more elegant look to our vehicle. Unfortunately, Fiamma has “forgotten” a rather important element, which it had not neglected in the case of the soft bag: a system for fixing the sign that identifies protruding loads, essential when using (in Italy) a traditional bicycle rack. The only case in which it can be done without is when the luggage compartment is placed on a luggage rack or a motorcycle rack that replicates the rear lights. In all other cases the sign must be placed.
If a special pocket was provided on the Cargo Box, there is nothing of the kind on the luggage compartment. Therefore, either the uncomfortable and aesthetically questionable system of ropes or elastic bands is used or another solution must be found. We asked our friends for advice on Facebook and after evaluating the possibility of using Velcro, magnets or glues, we decided to use through screws with smooth round heads: fixed from the inside with nuts, they cannot be unscrewed from the outside, thus avoiding that the expensive homologated sign (the cardboard ones for a few euros are not up to standard) from being stolen.
We therefore resorted to the newly purchased drill and, by adding rubber washers both on the outside and inside, we fixed everything. With an aesthetic result that fully convinces us. Our UltraBox 500, without exceeding the maximum permitted load (43 kilos considering that our Lift 77 reaches a maximum of 60 kilos), now contains a scooter, a light Ikea coffee table, two folding chairs, a beach bed and little other stuff, which, however, without this solution we would not have always been able to have with us.
- Volume: 500 liters
- Weight: 17 kg
- Maximum load: 43 kg
- Size: 147 x 70 x 53 cm
- Maximum speed with luggage rack mounted: 110 km/h
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