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  1. #1
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    Performance Transit Panniers?

    Hello,

    The new bags from Performance, particularly the "TransIt Waterproof Panniers" look pretty good. The copy in the catalog is spectacularly unhelpful, but it appears the bags can be rendered waterproof or left to breath a bit if contents are damp. They look well constructed, and they're a steal at $60 a pair for large rears. No mention is made of the mechanism used to attach them. Just wondering if anyone has a set yet. It's too soon to talk about durability, but two sets of these would still be less than one of Arkel or Ortleib's bags.

    Thanks,
    Mark

  2. #2
    __________ seeker333's Avatar
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    I saw some in a Perf store - the regular Transit, NOT waterproof. They appeared to be well sewn together, reasonably heavy nylon material.

    They fastened with steel hooks and strap (what all inexpensive panniers use - for an idea of fastening systems that represent other end of the cost spectrum, look at arkel and ortlieb).
    edit: oops, i see you found them already. amazing what you can learn from reading....

    My memory is that the Perf bag maybe lacked a compression strap or two, so that the load might flop around a little - especially when bag is only half-filled. It needed a "belt" around its waist. You could always sew a strap on, or just use some cord. If the "add your own strap" doesn't bother you, bear in mind that the cheapest pannier can be waterproofed easily with the std "tall kitchen trash bag" - they're cheap, weigh next to nothing and available everywhere.

    Perf sells a lot of stuff that's like that - basic gear thats maybe has some slight weakness in design or construction. But it can often be worked-around.

    Be sure to search for coupon codes (10-20%) before buy commit to purchase - there's almost always one out there.
    http://forums.mtbr.com/forumdisplay.php?f=54
    Last edited by seeker333; 05-30-07 at 07:04 PM.

  3. #3
    Leather and Canvas Fetish
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    I haven't seen these bags in person, but the pics in the catalog look exactly like the Nashbar Waterproof Panniers (It makes sense, since they are owned by the same company):

    http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...%3A%20Panniers

    I have the large and small Nashbar panniers. Really basic bags, but I like them for the price.

    Pros:

    --Yes, they are really waterproof! 99% of the time, I just buckle down the outer flap. This allows the pannier to breathe. When it rains, I roll up the inside material which seals the bag from moisture, but makes the capacity smaller
    --They are super lightweight
    --The large is basically a big cave that will swallow a watermelon
    --The small ones are petite and perfect for the front
    --They are cheap, cheap, cheap, when on sale

    Cons:

    --You will open the box and ask yourself, "Is that all there is to it?"
    --The back support is flimsy and can bend the panniers into your spokes
    --The mounting brackets are the old style hooks and bungee, with velcro tabs to secure to the rack, but I've never had one fly off in thousands of miles
    --Since they are lightweight...they won't last forever
    --The reflective silkscreened paint doesn't reflect
    --The logo is fairly big, but it's not obnoxious
    --No pockets, which sometimes is a good thing
    Last edited by ronzorini; 05-30-07 at 07:58 PM.

  4. #4
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    Get the small ones.....the big Performance panniers are just too big and flimsy, but the smaller ones hold plenty and a good value. I've always used a strap around the middle for compression.

    I'd think nothing about riding the Performance bags across the USA...using rain covers of course. They are not as good as some of big name brand panniers, but they aren't junk either.

  5. #5
    uhmmmm? baskinrobbin's Avatar
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    I've got a pair from Nashbar as well. They're big and flimsy, and I"m always worried about breaking them, but they are waterproof. I also broke the strap last week pulling the bag off the rack. They are big, I fit my thermos, lunch, and clothes in them with plenty of room to spare.

  6. #6
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    Thanks everyone. Think I'll keep saving up for the Arkels. Happy trails!
    Mark

  7. #7
    Senior Member badger_biker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tacomee
    Get the small ones.....the big Performance panniers are just too big and flimsy, but the smaller ones hold plenty and a good value. I've always used a strap around the middle for compression.

    I'd think nothing about riding the Performance bags across the USA...using rain covers of course. They are not as good as some of big name brand panniers, but they aren't junk either.
    tacomee -
    What is the outside to outside measurement the top hooks on the small bags? I have Blackburn low riders with the top forming a long 'V' so they attach on both sides of the fork braze on which goes through the fork. Anyway, with that setup I am limited to a certain distance between hooks, or the bags won't fit. I have an old set of Nashbar front bags (patterned off old style Cannondales) that work, but I'm thinking of upgrading to more waterproof bags.
    Thanks.

  8. #8
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    I haven't looked at the *new* ones...mine look a lot like


    I haven't seen any of the new waterproof bags.... just the older models that are a lot like your current bags. I'm guessing the hooks, straps, and back haven't changed much, if any. (I'm hoping, anyway)

    Once apon a time you could buy bright yellow rain covers for the Performance bags....I'd look for those before trying new *waterproof* panniers. Or even look to Jannd covers, if you could try them at a shop before buying them. REI has covers as well for very simular bags....

    Sorry I'm not more of a help,

    tacomee

  9. #9
    Leather and Canvas Fetish
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    Quote Originally Posted by badger_biker
    tacomee -
    What is the outside to outside measurement the top hooks on the small bags? I have Blackburn low riders with the top forming a long 'V' so they attach on both sides of the fork braze on which goes through the fork. Anyway, with that setup I am limited to a certain distance between hooks, or the bags won't fit. I have an old set of Nashbar front bags (patterned off old style Cannondales) that work, but I'm thinking of upgrading to more waterproof bags.
    Thanks.
    On my small black Nashbar Waterproof panniers (which looks the same as the new Transit Waterproof panniers)...

    the outside to outside hook measurement is 6-3/4"

    the inside to inside hook measurement is 5-1/4"

    (the metal hooks are 3/4" wide)

  10. #10
    Senior Member badger_biker's Avatar
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    Thanks ronzorini - they sound narrow enough to work with my low riders and I may check them out.

  11. #11
    Senior Member CyKKlist's Avatar
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    I had the chance to try out Performance and Ortlieb panniers on the same trip back in April. The Ortliebs were rock solid and easy to pack and manage (I use lots of ziplock bags). The Performance bags were on my son's bike and they also were easy to pack in and out.

    However, the attachment "system" for the Performance bags was dreadful. The basic hooks did not stay put at all. We had some dangerous moments with bags falling off the bike on a busy road. Shame on me for not taking time to test them out locally before getting on the road. At the end of the first day I used duct tape to keep them on the rack, and that worked. We have the basic set, so I'm hoping you're looking at an improved design.

    Ken
    Latest bike tour journal now posted -- PALM ride across Michigan!
    http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/palm2009

    Also -- NC Courthouse Tour, using Amtrak to Charlotte
    http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/nccourthousetour

    Trek 520 for commuting, touring, family rides and smiling at life.

  12. #12
    Dances a jig. Mchaz's Avatar
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    I have done some research on the TransIt Pro and Epic panniers. I don't know if the waterproof ones have the same attachment system, but the Pro and Epic versions don't use the regular hook and bungee solution.

    http://www.performancebike.com/help/...it_pannier.pdf

    You can see from the diagram they use a strap and buckle system, like a backpack. I remember reading a review, and it said the panniers were very secure on the rack. The disadvantage was that it took a lot of effort to loosen the straps, and remove the panniers.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by ronzorini
    Cons:
    --You will open the box and ask yourself, "Is that all there is to it?"
    Funny you should mention that. I was looking at these front panniers from Nashbar the other day and nearly bought them along with the matching front rack... until I looked closer at the measurements. The bags are tiny!

  14. #14
    Senior Member staehpj1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mchaz
    I have done some research on the TransIt Pro and Epic panniers. I don't know if the waterproof ones have the same attachment system, but the Pro and Epic versions don't use the regular hook and bungee solution.

    http://www.performancebike.com/help/...it_pannier.pdf

    You can see from the diagram they use a strap and buckle system, like a backpack. I remember reading a review, and it said the panniers were very secure on the rack. The disadvantage was that it took a lot of effort to loosen the straps, and remove the panniers.
    I have a set of the Pro model and they are very secure, but easy to loosen on my Blackburn rear rack. On the transit front rack they are a little awkward to release. That is fine with me since I plan to use them on the back.

    Our group also has a couple sets of front and rear waterproof ones from Nashbar. They have the wimpy hook and bungee system along with some velcro attachments. I think the combination is adequate, but nothing to write home about. You can always add a compression strap around the rack and the pannier if you are worried.

    I should note that all of this is based on a bit of tinkering. I have not yet toured with either of these.

  15. #15
    Senior Member pasopia's Avatar
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    I have the performance epic panniers, and I would not recommend them. For not that much more money you can get some classic ortliebs ( which I eventually did). The performance panniers had holes in them after my first 6 week tour. The retention system sucks, they flew off my bike a number of times and i had to zip tie them down, which makes it a pain to remove them quickly. Its also dangerous when your riding partner has to dodge them bombing down a mountain. Maybe the new ones are better, I bought mine in 2003.

  16. #16
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    I looked at the older style Performance bags and really disliked the mounting system. I looked at the Ortleib, but I really wanted an exterior mesh pocket and didn’t like the lack of expansion capabilities. However, I really liked the attachment system. I then looked at the Lone Peak line. It had more pockets than I would have liked, but they were a lot less expensive than the Arkels. I purchased the Lone Peaks and was pleasantly surprised at both the ease of attachment and removal. I was very impressed with the rock solid attachment system. After using the better mounting system, I would not use the Performance/Nashbar mounting system because the need for “fiddling” in mounting and removal. (I have a Twowheelgear commuter bag that uses the same system as Performance and loathe it).

    I’ve been training with the Lone Peaks for several weeks now and haven’t found any problems or concerns with the attachment system. I asked Wayne at The Touring Store about the durability of the plastic hooks. He stated that in the years he has sold them, he has not heard of one breaking.

    I believe the Arkel and Ortleib attachment systems are better than the Lone Peaks, but for the price, it wasn’t worth it for me.

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