Touring - Convenience of Panniers.
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01-02-02, 12:47 AM
When on my last tour, I liked my Performance Panniers, except for the convenience of taking them off and putting back on my front/back racks. They attach by velco straps and hooks.
My fellow tourers said take them off every night in camp. Racoons will get into them. So put them in the vestibule of my tent. Last couple nights I said forget this. I would take food out still.
But, after taking off panier, the adjustment strap would some how, not remain in the same position, It would be too loose or tight on the rack. Why?? Take off , readjust, put on. Several times before right tension would be correct. Four panniers, my fellow cycle tourists would have completed breakfast.
Any ideas? Can I modify these panniers from the velcro straps so they are more convenient.
01-02-02, 06:35 AM
There are some standard click-on fitments made for pannier by Rixen and Kraul. You may be able to rivet the mountings onto your bags. There is simply no excuse for fiddly mounting systems in the 21st century.
An extruded Al rail goes along the top of the inside face, and you slide on however many hooks you need (min of 2).
A platic rail goes along the bottom, and a "door-handle" hook slides onto this and stops the pannier swaying.
I use Performance panniers in front with Blackburn low rider rack and never had the problem you describe. However, I've often thought the attachment method was a bit over-complicated.
I always put all four panniers inside the vestibule, even without food inside the skunks and 'possums will try to get in. I think the critters in the large busy campgrounds know all the tricks. I can't afford to have my panniers chewed.
01-03-02, 08:39 AM
I had a pair of Performance Transit Epic panniers which I thought were very well made. I hated the suspension system and immediately replace it with a very convenient system from Arkel. Everything worked fine. After just a couple of months daily commuting use I had a minor fall, and one of the bolts and washer pulled right through the stiffener which turned out to be pretty flimsy corrugated plastic like they make those post office mail tubs out of. I wrote to Performance, and even though I had modified the panniers, they refunded my money. I purchased an Arkel Utility Basket Pannier and have been very happy with it. If I were going to purchase panniers for serious touring, I would probably go with Arkel or Ortlieb though there are a number of good brands out there. The Arkel stiffener is thick, solid high density plastic that should stand up to anything.
The Arkel suspension system is extremely secure, but comes off in literally about 3 seconds. A retro fit kit is available for $15 plus shipping.
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