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Old 07-07-08, 06:14 PM   #1
Siu Blue Wind
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Pros and cons of handlebar bags

???? The good the bad and the ugly.

(and please tell me which one you have)

Thanks!
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Old 07-07-08, 06:18 PM   #2
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oh, you mean specific brands and models.

i was thinking pro: super useful and convenient, con: look kinda goofy.

got no help, sorry.
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Old 07-07-08, 06:58 PM   #3
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I'm neutral on them; perhaps convenient to carry a wallet, phone and a granola bar.
Have a Velo Orange model that is sort of a cylinder with zipper on top- about 10" long and 4" dia.
Also a nice Cadarrice, not sure what it is called- more square.
Plus an Acorn handlebar bag.
The Acorn is smallest. All of them will fit nicely in the bag loops on a Brooks saddle.
IMO, the brake/shift cable routing, type of handlebar and stem makes a difference to the utility and size of bag.
Recently my teenage son appeared with the Acorn bag on the handlebar (a Mary bar) of his MTB/touring bike and the Cadarrice (sp?) on the bag loops of his B-68; he thanked me for "loaning" them to him. He was very happy with the set up, fitting wallet, camera & phone in the Acorn. Tube and other stuff in the seat bag.
So I'm left with the Velo Orange (have 2), one for the albatross handlebar crosscheck and one for our tandem. fits nicely on the tandem, sort of splits into two sections at the stem. does not work so well
with albatross.
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Old 07-07-08, 07:06 PM   #4
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oh, you mean specific brands and models.

i was thinking pro: super useful and convenient, con: look kinda goofy.

got no help, sorry.
Well, some hang kinda funny, some restrict the cables...some are hard to open - That kinda thing.

martianone, who makes Acorn?
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Old 07-07-08, 07:20 PM   #5
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I've used the cheap Bell and Schwinn models sold at Walmart and Target. They can block headlights. One of the loops on my Bell broke. The Schwinn is too big for the way the straps are attached and tends to hang off at an angle. The idea is fine, but execution of those two is not good.
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Old 07-07-08, 07:26 PM   #6
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Thank you StephenH, this is the kind of advice I'm looking for. I've used search and found what others had said they have, not what to stay away from and why. And for what it's worth, even listing the bag they have doesn't mean that one is happy with it.
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Old 07-07-08, 08:07 PM   #7
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I've got a Brooks Millbrook. It's big enough you have to force the cables to fit around it, and buckles aren't the easiest thing to work with. Actually, it's one of the few places I'll concede the value of velcro. It is not cheap.
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Old 07-07-08, 08:26 PM   #8
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Useful to carry things you want to reach while riding like a camera or snacks. The weight in front of the steering axis is not good for handling. V-brake noodles can be used to avoid conflict with Shimano brifter cables. If you arent afraid of looking dorky plastic baskets work well with shoe laces to keep the weight off the front tube and other cables.
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Old 07-07-08, 08:48 PM   #9
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Oh wow. I forgot about the weight. I'm not commuting or anything, just want something in addition to my saddle bag to hold a camera, some snacks, tubes and a packable wind breaker. Right now my saddle bag holds the cell, ID and a folding tool.

I guess I need something where that can pack nice and snug, don't want things moving around and throwing me off kilter.

Thanks for the noodle tip. *goes to eyeball brifters*
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Old 07-07-08, 10:26 PM   #10
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I use them all the time, no drawbacks I've ever noticed. Most of what you read about them affecting the handling is bogus unless you're carrying bowling balls. I have two from Rivendell, a Candy Bar Bag and a Hobo Bag, wildly overpriced but I got them as gifts. CB is tubular, maybe 14 inches long and four in diameter. Hobo Bag looks like this:" http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...G%26ie%3DUTF-8. They don't carry it anymore, but they have a similar one.
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Old 07-07-08, 10:36 PM   #11
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Oh wow. I forgot about the weight. I'm not commuting or anything, just want something in addition to my saddle bag to hold a camera, some snacks, tubes and a packable wind breaker. Right now my saddle bag holds the cell, ID and a folding tool.

I guess I need something where that can pack nice and snug, don't want things moving around and throwing me off kilter.

Thanks for the noodle tip. *goes to eyeball brifters*
The weight issue is overblown. I use them on tour because that's the best way to carry a camera. I should use them in town (I used to) but I just don't. Mostly due to interference with light mounting.

As for the STI interference issue, the v-brake noodle is easy to set up and works well.




Ortlieb bag by the way.
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Old 07-07-08, 10:52 PM   #12
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cyccommute,

Wonderful to see the visual of the "noodles" in action. I had heard of this approach as a work-around for certain larger bar bags. Very nice to see the implementation. I will definite look to go this route when moving from just a rack bag, or pannier. And I like the ortlieb! Looking to get on myself soon.
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Old 07-07-08, 11:05 PM   #13
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Thank you, CC. It's so nice to be able to see the noodles and how you have them set up. Your bag is about the size that I need. I saw this: http://www.rei.com/product/735854?pr...:referralID=NA
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Old 07-07-08, 11:21 PM   #14
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Buy a backpack cables get in the way and way too noisy with bumps.
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Old 07-08-08, 03:33 AM   #15
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If you want something which will cause no problem when used with Shimano STIs, can carry camera, tools, jacket and is waterproof with a bombproof fitting, then this is the one for you.

http://www.jdcycles.co.uk/accessorie...classic?JDC=1b
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Old 07-08-08, 03:38 AM   #16
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I use a cheap bar bag on my MTB, but my utility bike (coming purchase) will have a basket instead.
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Old 07-08-08, 03:42 AM   #17
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On my touring bikes I am less fussy about touring bags. On my Klein they often are much too hideous. I found a Madden bag which is not too big and fits under the handlebars and is hardly noticeable. I use it for wallets, tools, and energy bars. It does not mess up the 'lines ' of my race bike on a club day, but carries all the stuff one needs should you be out for most of the day. I'd say its like 5 x7x3 and takes some of the bulk out of my jersey pockets.
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Old 07-08-08, 07:02 AM   #18
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the Japanese Ostrich brand big bag offered by velo orange, and and the ortlieb classic 4. the velo orange bag rocks!

tried the jannd, don't like the attachment system at all. Ortlieb is secure but you really only want to be installing it once.
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File Type: jpg velo bag2.JPG (37.3 KB, 46 views)
File Type: jpg velobag3.JPG (46.2 KB, 42 views)

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Old 07-08-08, 08:41 AM   #19
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cyccommute,

Wonderful to see the visual of the "noodles" in action. I had heard of this approach as a work-around for certain larger bar bags. Very nice to see the implementation. I will definite look to go this route when moving from just a rack bag, or pannier. And I like the ortlieb! Looking to get on myself soon.
It's pretty easy to do, also. When you cut the end off of the noodle, use a fine tooth saw and dress the ends either by grinding or a file. You don't want any burrs in the end of the tube to catch the cable. I also left the plastic liner in the noodle and finished the end with a ferrule at the lever.
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Old 07-08-08, 08:49 AM   #20
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Thank you, CC. It's so nice to be able to see the noodles and how you have them set up. Your bag is about the size that I need. I saw this: http://www.rei.com/product/735854?pr...:referralID=NA
If you can look at the bag before you buy it, make sure that it has a stiffener that goes all the way from the top to the bottom of the bag. I have another bag that didn't have the stiffener all the way to the bottom (cut out for rain cover) and it was very floppy as you can see below.



I added an aluminum plate to stiffen it which worked but it's a pain. Here it is on my daughter's bike. And it less floppy.

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Old 07-08-08, 03:16 PM   #21
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I also see no significant disadvantages. Mine has lots of pockets, which is nice, and I usually keep my U-lock in there, plus gloves and and windbreaker. Map pocket is nice on the top. I only wish mine were larger.
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Old 07-08-08, 08:53 PM   #22
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Just a thought...If you're looking for up front easily accessable but minimal storage, why not try a bento box (there are various brands)? They fit on the top bar and the large sizes will fit a small camera plus a few other items or a bunch of energy bars. No effect on steering and no interference with cables.
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Old 07-08-08, 08:53 PM   #23
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Thanks for your suggestions everyone. I'm going to have to do more research on the internet. I appreciate the pics too!
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Old 07-08-08, 08:59 PM   #24
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Just a thought...If you're looking for up front easily accessable but minimal storage, why not try a bento box (there are various brands)? They fit on the top bar and the large sizes will fit a small camera plus a few other items or a bunch of energy bars. No effect on steering and no interference with cables.
I was actually thinking of that but even the large one is too small. I'd RATHER have something that attaches like that to the top tube but the large only holds six energy bars (according to the website).
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Old 07-08-08, 10:20 PM   #25
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I've tried out a bunch. I have one of the giant bags that snaps onto a frame that clips to the bars. Medium size ones that strap to the bars. But, in the end, the only ones that stay on my bikes are the tiny bags...just big enough for a mini u-lock, or a tire patch kit.

When I need to carry ten or fifteen pounds of stuff, I would rather use saddle bags...I don't feel their weight. A huge bag on the bars that is filled with gear CAN be felt and makes the steering feel a bit "off".
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