Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 19 of 19

Thread: Handlebar bags

  1. #1
    Banned. ModoVincere's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    1,628
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Handlebar bags

    Anyone use one? Likes and dislikes?
    What model do you use?
    Suggested improvements to that design?

    I'm thinking about trying to make my own so would like to know what works for you and what doesn't and why.
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Retro-nerd georgiaboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Morningside - Atlanta
    My Bikes
    2002 Cannondale Badboy, 2004 Bianchi Vigorelli
    Posts
    1,584
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I don't use a handlebar bag, but I have looked at them. For the most part, some may simply use them for extra storage. However, the beauty of a handlbar bag is easy access so you can retrieve the contents while riding. Some use handlebars bags for maps, cellphones, snacks, etc...

    If you don't get satisfactory answers in this forum the "Long Distance Cycling" people my use them more often...
    Last edited by georgiaboy; 05-13-08 at 07:58 AM.
    Would you like a dream with that?

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    central AZ Prescott Valley
    My Bikes
    Giant Simple 7
    Posts
    374
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I converted an old handbag into a handlebar bag for snacks, phone, kleenex, key, etc. You can stuff a windbreaker into it or carry a map. I suggest going to the thrift store for ideas. They have leather and canvas bags that you can cut the straps off of and velcro onto the bars. Some look very masculine.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Hammonton, NJ
    My Bikes
    Dawes Lightning sport, Trek 1220, Trek 7100
    Posts
    883
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by ModoVincere View Post
    Anyone use one? Likes and dislikes?
    What model do you use?
    Suggested improvements to that design?

    I'm thinking about trying to make my own so would like to know what works for you and what doesn't and why.
    Thanks
    I like mine because I can store snacks, a waterbottle, my chain, 2 tubes and a gaiter (that I use when I ride in normal pants. Its a cheapie one but it has never come off the bike and theoretically, I can use it as a "fanny pack" because it comes with straps (though I have never done that...).

    its a "bell" that I got from "Dicks sporting goods". it cost about 12 buck where if I got something at the LBS, it would be more like 27... I also have a bell seat bag that I got from walmart also a good deal where I put in my multi tool, chain break tool, tire levers and co2 cartridges... it also has never fallen off the bike and uses velcro to fasten it...

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    central AZ Prescott Valley
    My Bikes
    Giant Simple 7
    Posts
    374
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    You could find a camera bag to convert, or an old toiletries bag to velcro onto the bars.

  6. #6
    practically invincible.
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    New Englander
    Posts
    221
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by ModoVincere View Post
    I'm thinking about trying to make my own so would like to know what works for you and what doesn't and why.
    Thanks
    I made my own out of heavy wool coating...it came out OK but it needed a stiffer interfacing to keep it from flopping with the weight of the tools I'd put in it. So I ripped out a bottom seam and put a piece of stiff plastic between the lining and outside fabric--that works much better. But I wish I had added a third loop or strap to secure it to the stem, because it bounces on bad pavement. Good luck!
    \

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Buffalo NY
    My Bikes
    Gerry Fisher Nirvana, LeMond Buenos Aires
    Posts
    1,035
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I have a Topeak Tourguide DX model. This is a pretty large bag, but that was on purpose. I got a 2nd mount (about $10) so that I also can swap it from my Hybrid to my Road Bike. What I like is that I can put all my essentials in the handlebag bag. When I get anywhere I can pull off the pag, clip on the strap and all of my valuables are with me. I do have saddle bags (Axiom Appalachia) that were remarkably cheap ($29), work great, but are a bit of a pain to remove. I keep a spare tire in one of the saddle bag pockets on the hybrid. On my road bike I keep a spare tire in a small seat wedge bag.

    In the outer pocket of the handlebar bag I can keep all my essential tools that include: a small park tool kit with tire patch kit, tire levers and alan wrenches. I also carry a multi tool, a spoke wrench, and a wrench that I need whenever I need to take the handle bars off my daughters' Weeride Co-pilot, and a small first aide kit.

    On the inside lid there is a mesh pocket that I use to hold the rain cover for the bag and my helmet cover.

    On the inside of the bag I have two maps that cover just about anywhere I can ride within 70 miles. I also have the clear map pocket stored there when I don't need it on top. I also have the strap, some sun block, chain lube, tissues, wallet, cell phone, and garage door opener in there. There is still enough room left over that I can pack my daily lunch if I take the road bike to work - One can of pop, apple, banana, sandwich, bag of carrots, and a snack.

    To switch bikes all I do is move over the Roadmorph pump, handlebar bag and water bottles and away I go.

    Downsides: There are some fitment issues with some bikes depending on where the cables run. With the extra weight on the front handle bars, the front steering is definitely a bit twitchier. When parking the bike, the front wheel DEFINITELY wants to move much more and is much more likely to pull your bike over when using a kick stand... you just need to be aware and make sure the bike is good and stable before you let go.

    I think I paid about $45 for it on Amazon.com. Definitely something I use every ride I take.

    Happy riding,
    André

  8. #8
    Senior Member tarwheel's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    My Bikes
    Waterford RST-22, Bob Jackson World Tour, Ritchey Breakaway Cross, Gunnar Crosshairs, De Bernardi SL
    Posts
    6,150
    Mentioned
    7 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Check out the Acorn bags made by one of the Forum contributors:

    http://www.acornbags.com/

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    England
    Posts
    12,263
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Carradice is a good model for home build: a rivetted correx plastic box covered in fabric with Rixen and Kaul klickfix fitting.

  10. #10
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA
    My Bikes
    '08 Surly Cross-Check, 2011 Redline Conquest Pro, 2012 Spesh FSR Comp EVO, 2009 Spesh Singlecross, 2011 RM Flow1
    Posts
    11,322
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Anyone use one? Likes and dislikes?
    Yes, and I like it now that I don't use the original mounting bracket.

    What model do you use?
    Nashbar Elite

    Suggested improvements to that design?
    I took the handlebar mount and made a makeshift decaleur to mount the bag to my front platform rack.

    I'm thinking about trying to make my own so would like to know what works for you and what doesn't and why.
    If you're mounting it to the handlebars, keep the size pretty small. Use a hanging attachment and only use it for tools and some gels or light items. Stiff sided large bags (300 cu.in. and up) which mount to the handlebars all have the same problems:
    - They bounce around like crazy.
    - They sit too high and mess up the front-end handling.
    - They have too low a weight limit (limited by the mounting bracket.)

    Mounting the bag to a front rack (Nashbar $7 rack, Nitto M-12, etc.) does a number of things:
    - Stops the bouncing because the bag is strapped down at the base
    - Lowers the center of gravity and improves handling
    - Allows you to carry more weight/larger bag

    Look at the size of the Berthoud and Ostrich front platform "handlebar" bags: 700 cubic inches! That's bigger than a lot of rack trunks. Check out the serious randonneur bikes, and you'll notice that the old-school platform-mounted bag is a favourite choice among the long distance riders.
    The only thing I wish was different about the Ostrich and Berthoud bags: Why the heck can't they make 'em open towards the front? The flap and closure is at the front of the bag and it opens towards the rider... How the heck does that make sense for getting at your stuff while riding? My Nashbar bag is hinged at the front and zippered in the back so I can just reach on in and grab a gel or an orange wedge while on the go.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
    - Mandi M.

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Bellingham, WA
    My Bikes
    Rivendell Atlantis, 1988 Pinarello, Rivendell Wilbury (my wife's bike)
    Posts
    400
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I love handlebar bags! It's like having a convenient dashboard and glove compartment on the front of your bike.

    My main handlebar bag is less conventional than some: It's a Rivendell/Baggins Hobo bag. I saw one recently available on eBay, by the way. The main compartment is huge, and the smaller pockets that face you as you ride are really convenient. I always keep a digital camera in one pocket; cell phone, wallet, and keys in the other. The main compartment easily holds all kinds of stuff. I keep a compact pump in there... as well as hat, gloves, and sometimes a light jacket. Sunscreen and sunglasses as well. Maybe a book or magazine if I'm going to stop somewhere during a ride or commute. The main compartment will even hold a DSLR camera with a small to medium lens attached. So it's a big bag. The only downside is that this particular bag swings a lot if you get out of the saddle on a climb or sprint. I don't recommend it for a bike that you do a lot of out-of-saddle pedaling on. A smaller handlebar bag, or a more rigidly supported one, would be better.

    There are some photos here:
    http://www.pbase.com/sean000/bicycles

    The smaller Candybar bag on my wife's bike is also quite nice. I've ridden with that on my racing bike. It's so small that it doesn't swing much, and there are loops so you can anchor it to the brake hoods or bars.

    Of course there are plenty of conventional cordura bags out there. Ortlieb makes some good ones. I do like the waxed canvas bags though. Others may not.

    Sean

  12. #12
    Administrator Allen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Atomic batteries to power; turbines to speed
    My Bikes
    Salsa La Raza, Panasonic Electric, Bria, Bamboo touring, Bamboo cargo
    Posts
    4,701
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I've got two handlebar bags.
    One is a Brooks Millbrook, the other is an Ortlieb. They are about the same size.
    I love them both. The Brooks has many more miles, but is wearing fine. The Ortlieb is the more versitle of the two. It locks to the handlebar (keeps the bag from being stolen, not its contents), and is waterproof (I've never had water get in the Brooks either for that matter). The Ortlieb is much easer to attach and remove, its quick release system is very well designed.

  13. #13
    zpl
    zpl is offline
    Bike Fun Fanatic zpl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Portland, OR
    My Bikes
    2008 Salsa Casseroll, 2012 Surly Disc Trucker
    Posts
    619
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I have a small black Nashbar handlebar bag:

    http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...ndlebar%20Bags

    It is cheap ($10 right now), small and subtle, but can store tubes, a few tools, and have plenty of room for holding my leg warmers or my jacket when I start to warm up on my commuting rides and want to shed clothing.

  14. #14
    GATC
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    south Puget Sound
    Posts
    6,607
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    My dislike is to do with blocking my headlight (which is not currently on the bike, 'tis the season woohoo!) and also getting tangled w/ barrel adjusters on my brake cables.

    These could be dealt with by one of those bar extender things, but I am finding that I don't like the one I have and can't think of any better way to do it.

    Actually I can, the headlight issue can be dealt with by using a fork crown mount (esp. if I switch to dyno hub), and the barrel adjusters can be moved next time I change the housing.

  15. #15
    domestique squeakywheel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    off the back
    Posts
    2,005
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I recently bought a Frost River Sawbill Trail Bar Bag. It is a 12 inch long, 4 inch diameter tube with a zipper that straps to your handlebars. It is on my long distance bike, not my commuter. I bought it so I can eat while riding. I'll also keep maps in it.

    http://www.frostriver.com/bike_bags/sawbill_trail.html
    Clinging to my guns and religion.

  16. #16
    Administrator Allen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Atomic batteries to power; turbines to speed
    My Bikes
    Salsa La Raza, Panasonic Electric, Bria, Bamboo touring, Bamboo cargo
    Posts
    4,701
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by HardyWeinberg View Post
    My dislike is to do with blocking my headlight (which is not currently on the bike, 'tis the season woohoo!) and also getting tangled w/ barrel adjusters on my brake cables.

    These could be dealt with by one of those bar extender things, but I am finding that I don't like the one I have and can't think of any better way to do it.

    Actually I can, the headlight issue can be dealt with by using a fork crown mount (esp. if I switch to dyno hub), and the barrel adjusters can be moved next time I change the housing.
    I have that issue with my Salsa and the Brooks bag.

    I would prefer to have the light on my fork, but have to keep it zip tied to my handlebars.

  17. #17
    GATC
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    south Puget Sound
    Posts
    6,607
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    wow that certainly keeps the light switch right where you can get at it! I do like that bag. Mine is an ortlieb, which rises up enough that a light sitting on top of the bar can't really see over it. In every other respect I love the ortlieb bag. It can hold a 6 pack of longneck bottles w/ no sagging, which is quite a testament to the cable mount.

  18. #18
    Administrator Allen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Atomic batteries to power; turbines to speed
    My Bikes
    Salsa La Raza, Panasonic Electric, Bria, Bamboo touring, Bamboo cargo
    Posts
    4,701
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    The Brooks bag is very functional and sturdy, and look prettier than the Ortlieb, but the Ortlieb really is a superior product.

    On the bike I keep my Ortlieb bag I have the light mounted on the fork.

  19. #19
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA
    My Bikes
    '08 Surly Cross-Check, 2011 Redline Conquest Pro, 2012 Spesh FSR Comp EVO, 2009 Spesh Singlecross, 2011 RM Flow1
    Posts
    11,322
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'll take some better pictures of it at home, but here's how I mounted my Nashbar bag to the front rack.
    You can't really tell, but the top of the bag now comes up to the level of the bars; perfect for viewing the map case on the top of the bag. I use a bungee attached to the shoulder strap loops to fasten the bag to the front rack. The "decaleur" is a $0.68 joiner plate from Home Depot. I bent it around a piece of PVC, and held it in place with deck screws. The handlebar mount from the bag is attached to the PVC, and the whole deal is held to the front rack with some #6 machine screws.
    To avoid problems with my light (shadows from the bag, etc.) I unscrewed the light head from the regular L&M mount and built cut an extender tab from another joiner plate. I mounted that to the front of the platform rack so my light sits out front of the bag and just above my front wheel.
    It may be a completely MacGuyvered solution, but for now it's cheaper than a $60 chromed decaleur and $110 Ostrich bag.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
    - Mandi M.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •