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Old 02-25-06, 08:52 PM   #1
bccycleguy
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Has anyone tried using a handlebar bag only on longer day trips, where you may want to carry a few things, take a sweater or jersey off, or have a map displayed?

I guess the issue is handling, you wouldn't want much weight in it, maybe a couple of kilos max.

Do you think that a saddle bag is more aero than a handlebar bar, or a small rear rack?

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Old 02-25-06, 08:59 PM   #2
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I sometimes use a Rivendell Candy Bar bag with no trouble. I generally don't like large handlebar bags with a lot of weight because of stability issues. For larger loads I prefer a Carradice saddlebag.
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Old 02-25-06, 09:20 PM   #3
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I use a small backpack that I got at a thrift sale for .50 and bungee it to my rear rack. It has oodles of pockets for small things ,energy bars etc. main pocket is big enough for a jersey but not a sweater.
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Old 02-25-06, 10:49 PM   #4
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I have a handlebar bag I have been using for years for day trips and a couple times for overnight. I haven't experinced these legendary stabilty problems other than wheel flop when I have more than 3 kilos in the bag and I lean the bike against something.
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Old 02-25-06, 11:33 PM   #5
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I always use a small handlebar bag on both Treks. No stability problems at all. Snap-on/Snap-off. Doubles as fanny pack. Carries flat-fix, wallet, phone, couple energy bars.

Rear rack on the 520 has the Trek Interchange trunk bag. Sometimes I'll bring it if the weather looks testy. Carries a rain parka but is mostly empty.
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Old 02-26-06, 01:11 AM   #6
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I often ride with just a handlebar bag. And I often wonder what people are talking about when they mention handling difficulties with a handlebar bag. I've never noticed any handling difficulties. My bicycle handles the same whether I've got the handlebar bag on or not.
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Old 02-26-06, 01:43 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Machka
I often ride with just a handlebar bag. And I often wonder what people are talking about when they mention handling difficulties with a handlebar bag. I've never noticed any handling difficulties. My bicycle handles the same whether I've got the handlebar bag on or not.
I agree entirely with this statement. I have used a large Cannondale handlebar bag extensively when touring as well as for day trips on four different bikes. I have never had any stability problems.
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Old 02-26-06, 05:49 AM   #8
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I always ride with a handlebar bag. It's very convenient to keep tubes, wallet, keys, camera and whatever else in. Since they usually are quite small overloading hardly seems like an issue to me.
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Old 02-26-06, 09:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bccycleguy
Has anyone tried using a handlebar bag only on longer day trips, where you may want to carry a few things, take a sweater or jersey off, or have a map displayed?

I guess the issue is handling, you wouldn't want much weight in it, maybe a couple of kilos max.

Do you think that a saddle bag is more aero than a handlebar bar, or a small rear rack?
Some people have said they have no handling problems with their handlebar bags, and neither have I. But I think it depends on the weight, and the front end geometry of your bike. It makes perfect sense that at a certain weight the handlebar bag would adversely affect handling.

But many people carry everything in front bags mounted on both their handlebars and a small front rack designed solely for holding the bottom of the bag.



That's a Co-motion with a set-up like I'm talking about. Of course, it has a saddlebag in the back, too, because it was set-up for a randonee event. But you could do something similar just up front.

A smaller bar bag, like the Candy Bar bag already mentioned, is good, but it doesn't hold everything you need on a long ride if you need to carry more than a few things. I usually carry another layer or plan on ditching one at some point, that sort of thing.

Hope that helps. I'll defer to others on aerodynamics; I never notice a difference.
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Old 02-26-06, 10:47 AM   #10
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SteelCommuter:

Nice ride. That's another one for my pic collection. You are all being rotated onto my desktop

.......uh oh, where's that front flap?!
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Old 02-26-06, 11:19 AM   #11
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Ditto on these weight issues. Is it somehow better to have the weight in the back, so that the bike flexes like crazy the moment your out of the saddle to stretch or whatever reason? Weight in the front means its over a stronger wheel and you have direct control over the mass. Its also easier to get the mass lower, which improves handling (though lower doesn't really happen w/ h-bar bags, more panniers....)


My experiences, at least.....
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Old 02-26-06, 11:23 AM   #12
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And ditto again on SC's ride.


Nice.
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Old 02-26-06, 12:57 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcm
SteelCommuter:

Nice ride. That's another one for my pic collection. You are all being rotated onto my desktop

.......uh oh, where's that front flap?!
I'd love to take credit, but that is a bike reviewed in Vintage Bicycle Quarterly, not mine.
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