I no longer have covered parking at work so I am looking for a bike cover that I can easily pack in my pannier. I had been using a cheap poncho, but that thing fell apart quickly. Does anyone have a recommendation for an easily packable bike cover to be used on rainy days?
Do you need to cover the whole bike or just the saddle? I think a lot of people just carry a cheap plastic grocery bag with them to cover the saddle in case of rain.
I get by on rainy days with just covering the saddle. Many bike shops sell saddle covers but I've found that a shower cap works just as well.
Cheap blue tarp , add snaps. [ Im in the cover the saddle camp ,
but on bike tours its handy to have a small tarp to load
your tent stuffings onto while you strike the tent./
and a place to sit when the ground is damp .
I also say tarp, 6x8 will do. Fold once, into a 3x8, fasten one end together. When you use it, slide it over the bike from the back (the closed end stops against the back tire), and if necessary, a cheap little bungee hooks near the stem.
I have tried three different bike covers. The first one was from http://www.bicyclecovers.ca/ This one is adequate at best. Would last maybe a year out in the elements. If I didn't have to pay shipping and taxes, it might have been somewhat worth it, but I would never buy one again. The other two I bought in Japan. One was garbage and fell apart the first time I used it. The other one was less than twenty dollars and is fantastic. It is durable and has draw string to tighten against both of the wheels, with velcro in the middle.
Now I know this really doesn't help you exactly but my point is try to buy one of the better ones if you are going to be using it a lot.
I thought about a tarp, but I was concerned about the packablity of it. I have taken a 6x8 (I think that is the size that I have) tarp on short trips, but it took up a lot of room.
I found the above in my searching last night, but $50 is pricey. Maybe just covering the saddle is the best idea? I need to thank about it more. Thank you for the suggestions. I am interested in more thoughts on the topic.
Blakcloud, I was very interested in your post as I was reading it, that is, until I got to the end of it. Do you remember the name of the one cover that you like?
I just cover the saddle when out and about. But, some of my bikes live in the small parking area underneath part of our small apartment building. I've got a bike rack set up there and everything chained up, but the parking area is open to the street next to it so I wanted to keep them covered so people wouldn't be eyeing the components on them. I've lost three bike covers stolen from there! I think homeless people find them attractive as make-shift tents. I've given up on putting manufactured bike covers on them and since I don't need them to be waterproof, my plan now is to get some flourescent orange fabric from a fabric store and sew that into bike covers. Hopefully between not being waterproof and being hi-vis instead of black, they won't be attractive to thieves!
Anyone else have theft issues with raincovers? I'd have to wonder if this would be a problem parking out and about in the city, or worse, if bike thieves would assume your bike is especially valuable and target it?
I had a cover that I bought for my Xtracycle, used it a couple of times, decided that it wasn't worth the hassle.
I always use a saddle cover, though.