Author Topic: handlebar bags  (Read 2721 times)

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Offline gatorprof

handlebar bags
« on: August 10, 2012, 12:03:32 pm »
I am new to Adventure Cycling and am contemplating my first trip. I plan to do 2-4 day tours and stay in hotels, so I just need to carry a couple of changes of clothes, shoes, and miscellaneous gear (tubes, repair tools, wallet, phone, etc.). Will a handlebar bag be sufficient to carry that? Any recommendations for which one? I was thinking of the Arkel large bag. Thanks!

Offline DaveB

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2012, 12:54:45 pm »
Handlebar bags should not be used for large or heavy items as they canhave a serious negative effect on bike handeling if loaded that way.  They are intended only for small, light items like your wallet, a small camera, maps and similar. 

For your load either small panniers or a rack top pack are far more suitable and safer.

Offline RussSeaton

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2012, 02:35:19 pm »
Go with sandals and SPD pedals and you can eliminate the extra pair of shoes.  For off bike clothes, shorts and T-shirt.  Maybe 1-2 pair cycling shorts.  1 jersey.  1-2 socks.  The other miscellaneous gear you mention should fit in a saddle bag wedge.  Camera in the handlebar bag.  Not much else needed.  You could easily fit all this in a handlebar bag.  In randonneuring, long rides, people carry all kinds of stuff in big handlebar bags.  Extra clothes, tools, parts, lots of food.  Sometimes supported by a front small rack.  Gilles Berthoud and Carradice are very popular brands of handlebar bags for randonneuring.

Instead of a large handlebar bag, you can go with a large saddlebag.  Carradice is the standard here.
http://www.wiggle.co.uk/carradice-camper-longflap-saddle-bag/

Another option is to go with a rear rack or seatpost rack.  Then put a large rack bag on it.  There are a few models with fold out side panniers.  Topeak makes some.  That would give lots of storage space.
http://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/sp/road-track-bike/Panniers-and-Bar-Bags-Topeak-RX-EX-Road-Trunk-Bag-with-Side-Panniers/TOPEBAGP250000000000
http://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/sp/road-track-bike/Panniers-and-Bar-Bags-Topeak-RX-DXP-Road-Trunk-Bag-with-Side-Panniers/TOPEBAGP275000000000

Offline nlsteve

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2012, 04:15:32 pm »
There are different ways to do it, but may I suggest either a small or medium handlebar bag to serve as your "purse" and carry your frequently-wanted items and valuable stuff (and be removed from the bike when you go into a restaurant or something), combined with:

-- A rear rack and small/medium panniers, or

-- A rear rack with a lightweight backpack or duffle or ultralight bag strapped on top of it.

Carry all the overnight stuff in the rear bag or panniers.  Carry your wallet, sunscreen, lightweight windbreaker, camera, phone, snacks, etc., in the handlebar bag.  Get a handlebar bag with a mapholder on top and an easy system to mount/dismount the bag from the handlebar.

Steve

Offline gatorprof

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2012, 06:02:58 pm »
I don't want to do a rack because I have just one road bike which I currently use for day riding - typically 20 miles in the evening on a set of rollers, between 40-60 miles on Saturday and Sunday, and the occasional century. I did not know about the larger saddlebags, I will look into those as well.

Offline csykes

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2012, 08:10:29 pm »
Another option for a large saddle pack for a road bike is the Jandd Mountain Wedge III.

http://www.jandd.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=FMW3

Offline Huli

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2012, 08:22:11 pm »
I don't want to do a rack because I have just one road bike which I currently use for day riding - typically 20 miles in the evening on a set of rollers, between 40-60 miles on Saturday and Sunday, and the occasional century. I did not know about the larger saddlebags, I will look into those as well.

Go with a beam rack and convertable tail bag from Topeak.
http://www.topeak.com/products/Racks

Offline John Grossbohlin

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2012, 06:28:40 am »
I wouldn't use a large bar bag by itself as it will adversely affect handling. If you do not want to use a rack perhaps one of the frame packs combined with a smaller bar bag and a seat pack would be an option. Search for Jandd, Akra, Axiom, and Salsa frame packs for examples.  One of those may work for you....

Then again, a rack doesn't have to be permanently installed... If you have rack eyelets it would only take a few minutes to remove and reinstall the rack after the initial installation. This as once the adjustments are set in regards to the stay length they don't have to be touched again.

Offline DaveB

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #8 on: August 11, 2012, 01:44:15 pm »
Then again, a rack doesn't have to be permanently installed... If you have rack eyelets it would only take a few minutes to remove and reinstall the rack after the initial installation. This as once the adjustments are set in regards to the stay length they don't have to be touched again.
+1  If the frame has dropout and seatstay eyelets, less than five minutes with a 4 or 5 mm allen wrench is all it will take to add or remove it.  Even if you have to use P-clamps for all four fastening points, it would only take a couple of minutes more.

Offline gatorprof

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #9 on: August 12, 2012, 07:23:50 pm »
+1  If the frame has dropout and seatstay eyelets, less than five minutes with a 4 or 5 mm allen wrench is all it will take to add or remove it.  Even if you have to use P-clamps for all four fastening points, it would only take a couple of minutes more.

My bike is a 2006 Specialized Allez. I've seen in other places that there can be a problem with having enough clearance between the pedals and panniers on road bikes. Any thoughts or advice?

Offline John Grossbohlin

Re: handlebar bags
« Reply #10 on: August 12, 2012, 08:18:26 pm »
My bike is a 2006 Specialized Allez. I've seen in other places that there can be a problem with having enough clearance between the pedals and panniers on road bikes. Any thoughts or advice?

That is an "it depends" thing... Rear racks vary in the length of the top rails and in the length/adjustability of the hardware that attach the rack to the seat stays and drop out eyelets. Long feet can be a factor too... Based on your original message about "credit card touring," with a longish rack you could use front panniers in the rear and slide them back as far as possible.  I know the chain stays are relatively short on that bike but with this approach you likely would have no clearance problems on the Allez.

I'd think that perusing the various manufacturers' web sites would yield specs on the various racks.  Or a visit to a LBS that has a selection.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2012, 07:54:25 pm by John Grossbohlin »