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Old 11-19-11, 07:48 PM   #1
Balexander
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DIY Swiss army panniers (not $150)

I decided I wanted to mount a set of Swiss army surplus ammo bags to my rear rack for daily commute I'm my bike being built. I had seen them on etsy and eBay for 120-150. The ones for sale use bare metal hooks and a bungee cord.

I found an army surplus store online that sells the raw bags for 24.99
http://www.swisslink.com/products/pa...o_bag-16-1379/

Turns out you can buy the "bontanger interchange transit w/ sway bar" as spare parts from trek online. I love this mount system. Probably wouldn't be great if your bags were carrying super heavy loads, but they're super quiet and hold bags super snug.
http://store.trekbikes.com/jump.jsp?...&bShopOnline=1

The bags have rigid leather on the top and bottom that work well for running bolts through.

All together the set was about $80 with a considerably better mounting system. A warning, they are not very big. While I am an IT person, I have recently thrown out my laptop and now use only an iPad. So my load for commuting is very light and small. For me, these bags are just fantastic, and will fit the new VO Polyvalent well, which should be completed next Friday




Last edited by Balexander; 11-19-11 at 09:39 PM. Reason: Better pictures
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Old 11-19-11, 08:05 PM   #2
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Very, very nice.

It looks as if your rack is tipped down at the rear. Hard to tell in the photo.
It will look and work a little better if it is level.
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Old 11-19-11, 08:12 PM   #3
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Edit:i just went and messed with it since you brought it up. The rack is now level. Im angry and happy

Last edited by Balexander; 11-19-11 at 08:20 PM. Reason: Update
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Old 11-19-11, 08:35 PM   #4
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Edit:i just went and messed with it since you brought it up. The rack is now level. Im angry and happy
I put on a couple of tipped racks too. I leveled them after someone mentioned it to me.
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Old 11-19-11, 09:16 PM   #5
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I bet you could get $120-150 on ebay for those.
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Old 11-19-11, 09:22 PM   #6
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That's classy and at the right price.
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Old 11-19-11, 10:01 PM   #7
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New photos nice ! Awesome job !
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Old 11-20-11, 03:01 AM   #8
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OP: nice setup!



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I bet you could get $120-150 on ebay for those.
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Old 11-20-11, 03:07 AM   #9
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great looking panniers! How do they hold up in to the elements?

You might be able to get 120-150 on ebay, but I bet you could get $200 on etsy, maybe $300 of you used the work steampunk in the advertisement!
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Old 11-20-11, 07:38 AM   #10
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I haven't had a chance to use them yet, but they are made of very heavy waxed canvas. I imagine they'll hold up quite well, considering they meant to carry ammunition in the trenches.

People have the bags on sale right now for about $120, but use metal hooks, and either bungee cords or nylon webbing to secure them. While I'm sure that works great, you just can't beat the bontanger clip system, especially for light duty bags.
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Old 11-20-11, 08:27 PM   #11
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Those are sharp!
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Old 04-08-12, 08:01 PM   #12
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Good idea

I wanted to thank the OP (Balexander) for posting this thread about the DIY panniers. The DIY panniers is a really good idea and the OP provided all the information needed to do something similar. I decided to try and replicate something a little different and dyed the leather and canvas black and use them as front panniers.

Here is what I came up with:
swiss_bags_finished_2_small.jpg

Thanks again

- Bruzer
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Old 04-08-12, 10:33 PM   #13
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You might be able to get 120-150 on ebay, but I bet you could get $200 on etsy, maybe $300 of you used the work steampunk in the advertisement!
I paid $6 for mine at a thrift store, but it was only one. There's a couple of online military surplus stores that specialize in used international army bags, and some of them are made for panniers so no DIY work is necessary.
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Old 04-08-12, 10:43 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Balexander View Post
I decided I wanted to mount a set of Swiss army surplus ammo bags to my rear rack for daily commute I'm my bike being built. I had seen them on etsy and eBay for 120-150. The ones for sale use bare metal hooks and a bungee cord.

I found an army surplus store online that sells the raw bags for 24.99
http://www.swisslink.com/products/pa...o_bag-16-1379/

Turns out you can buy the "bontanger interchange transit w/ sway bar" as spare parts from trek online. I love this mount system. Probably wouldn't be great if your bags were carrying super heavy loads, but they're super quiet and hold bags super snug.
http://store.trekbikes.com/jump.jsp?...&bShopOnline=1

The bags have rigid leather on the top and bottom that work well for running bolts through.

All together the set was about $80 with a considerably better mounting system. A warning, they are not very big. While I am an IT person, I have recently thrown out my laptop and now use only an iPad. So my load for commuting is very light and small. For me, these bags are just fantastic, and will fit the new VO Polyvalent well, which should be completed next Friday



ooooooooooo, sharp!

i once had a us army m2 ammunition carrier on my motorbike for years. it was for an infantryman to carry extra ammo to the troops. a bag front and back with a hole for one's head. would like to find another one for the lynx.
paid a max of $5 at a gun show or surplus store.

woo! found 'em!:

http://www.colbubbie.com/usarmym-2ammunitionbag.aspx

this site has them for $20+ shipping. mil spec, straps on sides, no top- just a piece of rope that pulls the top lip in. expands.

Last edited by ka0use; 04-09-12 at 09:36 PM.
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Old 04-09-12, 05:29 AM   #15
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Very nice job to both the OP and the inspired reader. I made mine from Government issued bags also. My front panniers are Army GI Special Forces (black) fanny packs the Regular Army pack is Olive Drab Green if you like that shade better. They are part of the ALICE system The Army used to use. They Come in both the canvas (old) and the nylon (newer) material.

If you haven’t shopped in a surplus store you don’t know what you are missing.

Shown empty



.
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Old 04-09-12, 09:23 AM   #16
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Good stuff! Very creative. To OP, it's been a while since you made those, how are they holding up?
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Old 04-09-12, 09:45 AM   #17
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They're still in great shape. Keep in mind, they survived the European front during WWII. I think they'll make it through a few Indiana winters
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Old 04-09-12, 12:16 PM   #18
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They're still in great shape. Keep in mind, they survived the European front during WWII. I think they'll make it through a few Indiana winters
Ha! Well put.
I was wondering if the leather, once punched through, would sag or wear a bit. As you mentioned, running light load will probably last a long time.
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Old 04-09-12, 09:35 PM   #19
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Very nice job to both the OP and the inspired reader. I made mine from Government issued bags also. My front panniers are Army GI Special Forces (black) fanny packs the Regular Army pack is Olive Drab Green if you like that shade better. They are part of the ALICE system The Army used to use. They Come in both the canvas (old) and the nylon (newer) material.

If you haven’t shopped in a surplus store you don’t know what you are missing.

Shown empty



.

heyyyyyyyyyyy, i like your bags, too! and i looooove surplus stores.
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