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  1. #1
    Senior Member Jinkster's Avatar
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    My $9.99 Stem-Bag

    Well?...I Imagine by now you folks are fairly sick of seeing me start yet another thread about me buying new crap...(and I apologize for that)...but there was something very important missing....something that I had but opted to delete in favor of my new tail-light which by far deserved the premium and prominent position my old trek (under seat) tail-pack once consumed but alas?...where am I going to stow my cell phone now?....and?...where will I put my house keys?....and what about my hex wrenches?...and oh my Lord!...where will I stash my precious sugar free cinnamon disc hard candies that keep my mouth moistened?....and I guess I can just forget about taking my Glucose Meter!...as outside of one tight key pocket in my lycra riding shorts?..I have nowhere to stow anything...and that's a problem...and not only that but...anything on the handlebars is out of the question...what with my bar mounted brake interrupter levers and my Metro Light and my Padrone Speedo?...there's simply no room to lash on a bar mounted mini-bag...but alas...yet another option I never knew existed until I shopped and saw it...as this puny $9.99 Schwinn Stem-Bag suddenly made a whole lot of sense...

    stembag1.jpg

    And here it is mounted with my glucose meter, cellphone hard case, keys, and every size hex key and spoke wrench (in a zip lock baggy) and?...several extra zip lock baggies (that just fit my cellphone in case of rain) with plenty of room left over for a pocket full of sugar free hard candy! LOL!...and?...SAAAAAAALICK!

    stembag2.jpg

    The good news?..I think I'm done now and the only thing missing is me on top with my high sierra back-pack headed to work!

    stembag3.jpg

    I thought it was cool and worked out great for me so...figured I'd share and L8R, Bill.
    "An Old School Fool With A Lot of Miles To Go To Get There!"

  2. #2
    Senior Member BlazingPedals's Avatar
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    That looks like a basic bento box, and it'll work fine. If you like the concept but want a better quality one, just google the term. Even the nice ones aren't terribly expensive.

  3. #3
    Senior Member OldsCOOL's Avatar
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    Very handy!
    Having a flat tire as part of the total cycling experience is highly overrated. Knowing how to fix one quickly is not.

    '85 Trek 460 road racer

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  4. #4
    Travelling hopefully chasm54's Avatar
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    Cycling jerseys have pockets. And there still seems to be room for a small seat pack under your saddle without obscuring the light.

    Sorry to be negative, but having tried the top-tube bags you're describing I just found them to be a solution to a problem that didn't really exist.
    There have been many days when I haven't felt like riding, but there has never been a day when I was sorry I rode.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Jinkster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chasm54 View Post
    Cycling jerseys have pockets. And there still seems to be room for a small seat pack under your saddle without obscuring the light.

    Sorry to be negative, but having tried the top-tube bags you're describing I just found them to be a solution to a problem that didn't really exist.
    Well chasm...with all the great advice you've shared with me here you're certainly entitled to an opinion as well...as I mine...and I didn't set out to create a problem...nor would I even say I solved one...or?...(in agreement with you)....even claim that one existed....matter fact?...it didn't...and actually?...it was more in the category of...."Decisions & Preferences"....with "circumstances" as follows....

    1. There wasn't enough room on my seat rails to mount both...as my trek QD tail-pack also incorporated a rail mounting bracket.

    2. The ORIGIN8 Tail-Light came with a warning of..."CAUTION: UNIT GETS HOT" (so I didn't think it a great idea to crowd it in and block airflow with a strap-on style tail-pack)

    So the Tail-Light & My Safety won that particular position (between the two) and in the end?...I'm very pleased with that decision as now?....(unlike the tail-pack deal?)....I actually have a neat little "in my face"...(instead of up my butt LOL)....storage area I can easily access "On-The Fly" and I like that.

    But?...to each their own I guess and sorry if I made it come of sounding as though "I Solved A Problem"...I didn't....I just made a decision based on personal preferences and exercised what I thought was a very cool option when I saw it hanging there on the pegboard for $9.99.

    Ride Safe and L8R, Bill.
    "An Old School Fool With A Lot of Miles To Go To Get There!"

  6. #6
    Senior Member Jinkster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
    That looks like a basic bento box, and it'll work fine. If you like the concept but want a better quality one, just google the term. Even the nice ones aren't terribly expensive.
    Thanks...and yes...there are some really nice ones out there and yes...I made the "Stem-Bag" term up as I had no idea what they are called...but now I know...thanks.

    Quote Originally Posted by OldsCOOL View Post
    Very handy!
    Thanks!....That's what I'm thinking!
    "An Old School Fool With A Lot of Miles To Go To Get There!"

  7. #7
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Great place to carry a pocket camera for quick access for those on-the-ride pictures.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  8. #8
    Senior Member BobbyG's Avatar
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    I have that exact bag on my commuter. I use it to carry a "handkerchief" for nose blowing. On my road bike I use a frame bag under the top tube (in front of the seat). Both bikes have saddle bags for inner tubes and tools and all else goes in my backpack. I understand your situation about the light back there. BTW, I buy cheap cotton rags (3 or 5 for $1) to blow my nose, and then deposit them in the trash when they get used up. I had used paper towels but they were too rough on my nose. When people find solutions for their needs and then share them, that is one of the things that makes this website so useful and wonderful. Not everything works for everyone, but the colaboration benefits us all. Thnks for sharing.
    "When life hands you lumens, make lumen-aide!"

  9. #9
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
    Great place to carry a pocket camera for quick access for those on-the-ride pictures.
    ^ Yup. I usually carry my camera in my back pocket, but that doesn't work well on hot or cold days, so in the Bento Box it goes.

    My gripe with them is when climbing out of the saddle ... they tend to get in the way of my knee/thigh, and the velcro can fray out the bike shorts.
    Proud parent of a happy inner child ...
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  10. #10
    Senior Member NOS88's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biker395 View Post
    ^ Yup. I usually carry my camera in my back pocket, but that doesn't work well on hot or cold days, so in the Bento Box it goes.

    My gripe with them is when climbing out of the saddle ... they tend to get in the way of my knee/thigh, and the velcro can fray out the bike shorts.
    I would add to this, that if you've got cables running on the top, they just won't work. I wanted to be able to use one, but it was not to be. I do, however, think that the discovery of a bit of gear that works for one's needs/desires is a good thing. Glad you found an inexpensive way to do that.
    A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright
    Favorite rides in the stable: Indy Fab CJ Ti - Colnago MXL - S-Works Roubaix - Habanero Team Issue - Jamis Eclipse carbon/831

  11. #11
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    I like small point and shoot camera bags, on the stem with zip ties. Perfect for cellphone, credit card, ID, money.

    "Retirement is the best job I ever had!" Me, 2009


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  12. #12
    Senior Member spdracr39's Avatar
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    Man Purse

  13. #13
    Seat Sniffer Biker395's Avatar
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    ^ lol
    Proud parent of a happy inner child ...
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by chasm54 View Post
    Cycling jerseys have pockets. And there still seems to be room for a small seat pack under your saddle without obscuring the light.

    Sorry to be negative, but having tried the top-tube bags you're describing I just found them to be a solution to a problem that didn't really exist.
    I don't think I'd go so far as saying they're "a solution to a problem that didn't really exist". Clearly the OP had a problem (where to store his glucose meter, and whatnot during his ride), and a Bento Box is a solution to that problem. I have a couple of them and sometimes I use one and sometimes I don't depending on the logistics of the ride, i.e., how long I'm going (do I need to carry food or a windbreaker/vest or arm/leg warmers in my jersey pockets), whether I'm carrying my P&S camera (or just relying on my phone), whether I anticipate needing to access my phone during the ride, whether I'm commuting and can just put things in a trunk bag. FWIW I personally don't like to carry my phone or camera in my jersey pockets simply because the one time I went down (in recent memory), I bounced on the pavement on my back, and also I worry that these items might be ejected in a future crash. In a bento box, seat bag, or trunk bag they're somewhat protected.

    YMMV

  15. #15
    Senior Member BobbyG's Avatar
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    I just now noticed you have "interrupter" brakes along the top of your drop bars...I also have those.
    "When life hands you lumens, make lumen-aide!"

  16. #16
    Senior Member NVanHiker's Avatar
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    These bags are indeed handy, especially for cameras - I like to combine biking and birding. 9.99 is a steal!

    ['Bento Box' is a specific brand name for one particular tube-top bag. It is a play on words, referencing the traditional Japanese lunch-box. Normally these are referred to generally as frame bags or top-tube bags. I like stem-bag, too].

    [Most cyclists, amazingly, do not wear 'cycling jerseys' - we are commuters, tourers, and normal people using bicycles as transportation].

  17. #17
    Senor Puppet ofgit's Avatar
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    Looks like a convenient spot to have a bag. Are these bags stable? Seems they would damage the finish on the top tube.
    Old Fat Guy In Tights.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Jinkster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NVanHiker View Post
    These bags are indeed handy, especially for cameras - I like to combine biking and birding. 9.99 is a steal!
    I know...right? LOL!....same way I felt as getting a neat little bag I can easily access on-the-fly for about a buck more than a large #1 value meal at BK?....SOLD! LOL!

    Quote Originally Posted by ofgit View Post
    Looks like a convenient spot to have a bag. Are these bags stable? Seems they would damage the finish on the top tube.
    Yes...it seems to be plenty stable...resting on top and lashed to your frame from 2 adjacent sides?...very secure.

    As for damaging the finish?...I suppose it could over time...if you never remove it to clean/wax underneath it....and I suppose you could lay down a layer of tape to make sure if you have an ultra expensive bike with a pristine finish but then again...they probably aren't the kind of riders who would buy a $9.99 bent-bag! LOL!
    "An Old School Fool With A Lot of Miles To Go To Get There!"

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