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  1. #1
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    Bicycle touring - pannier bag design

    I am an industrial design student in Australia & am currently designing bags for bicycle riders. I wanted to design 2 different bags... namely 1 to suit the bicycle tourer market & the other to suit an urban bicycle commuter.

    The urban commuter I am fine with, as they're easier to access, but the tourer is another kettle of fish. I have found information as to what you guys need to carry on the road, however, I don't what your routine is. What I need to know is:

    *What's the preference to most tourers these days - trailer or pannier bags? Eg. 25% trailer / 75% pannier bags.
    *What's the most popular brand of pannier bag & what features do you look for when purchasing a pair?
    *How often do you need to take your bags off your bike - do you take them off when you lock your bike up?
    *What do you do about locking your bike / gear up when you leave your camp?
    *When you leave your camp do you usually have another bag to take all your important items with you or do you just carry stuff in your pockets?


    Any suggested links or sites would also be a real help.

  2. #2
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    [QUOTE=bike_bag_design]
    Quote Originally Posted by bike_bag_design
    *What's the preference to most tourers these days - trailer or pannier bags? Eg. 25% trailer / 75% pannier bags.
    I'd guess that that is pretty accurate.
    Quote Originally Posted by bike_bag_design
    *What's the most popular brand of pannier bag & what features do you look for when purchasing a pair?
    In Canada, I'd say the most popular brand is Serratus (since superceeded by MEC), because a) they're readily available at MEC, and b) they're inexpensive. What I like about them is the simplicity of design. They're basically one big compartment, so there's not a lot that can go wrong with them. No pieces to break, no seams to come apart. Mine are 11 years old, and still going strong.
    Quote Originally Posted by bike_bag_design
    *How often do you need to take your bags off your bike - do you take them off when you lock your bike up?
    I take bag panniers of at the end of each day when I get to camp.
    Quote Originally Posted by bike_bag_design
    *What do you do about locking your bike / gear up when you leave your camp?
    I lock my bike. I leave my panniers in my tent. I take my valuables with me in my handlebar bag.
    Quote Originally Posted by bike_bag_design
    *When you leave your camp do you usually have another bag to take all your important items with you or do you just carry stuff in your pockets?
    My handlebar bag carries all my valuables; wallet, camera, etc.

  3. #3
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    I looked at your questions, and it seems to me there isn't any agreement on any of that stuff. The trailer question ought to be a mater of record, and around here I rarely see trailers. The big knock against them is that a lot of people own a bike and it has a rack, and they have some paniers, so the moment they think they might want to go touring they may already have what they need. If everyone already owned trailers for carrying groceries then it would seem they would be a natural choice for when they go touring. I have used both trailers and paniers and prefer paniers, for much the same reason I prefer throwing my gear in the back of the car, vs. carrying more and hitching up the trailer. If I needed to carry twice the gear I do for unsupported riding, say I had special gear or lots of water, then trailers would be my choice.

    Also I use the same paniers and racks for touring and comuting, I just only use one bag for comuting, If I had a special comuting bag it might well be assymetric to maximize the utility of one bag. Or top mounted. Which would be logical, but not really supported on the average current bike.

    I remove gear when shopping etc... around town, the comuting use. I leave gear on and simply don't stop where I fear theft while touring. I haven't faced the problem of say touring europe, where a major goal might be to see the cities, and not have my gear stolen.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the input...

    ... you have given me a lot of food for thought

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the input...

    you have been a great help & have filled my voids.
    Very much appreciated.

  6. #6
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    In the UK, Carradice are a popular brand for touring. They are very simple, light, tough and repairable but have modern mounting fixtures.

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