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Old 08-25-08, 08:11 AM   #1
kuan
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Panniers: 2 large or 4 small?

Folk have any thoughts on travelling with two large panniers in the back vs. four smaller ones?
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Old 08-25-08, 09:11 AM   #2
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Four smaller ones would help a lot with handling and organization. A minor concern (but substantial for myself) is that you'd save weight with two big ones (depending on how much you're carrying, the amount of the savings may not be appreciable).
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Old 08-25-08, 09:24 AM   #3
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It is good to get some weight forward. I like to carry smaller denser stuff in the front and lighter more bulky stuff in the back.

The difference in weight between 2 and 4 panniers will vary a lot depending on what panniers you pick, but I wouldn't let the weight of 2 big vs 4 smaller be too big a factor in your decision unless you are going ultralight.
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Old 08-25-08, 09:27 AM   #4
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Have you considered two medium sized panniers up front and only a dry bag stuffer on top of the rear rack?
It has worked well for me in all conditions for over 25 years.
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Old 08-25-08, 09:33 AM   #5
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Folk have any thoughts on travelling with two large panniers in the back vs. four smaller ones?
It can be done but spreading the load out will make for better handling and reduce the stress on the rear wheel. Even before you add the rear panniers it is already carrying the bulk of the load.

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Old 08-25-08, 09:50 AM   #6
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Ok when we talk medium sized what do we mean? I have the Ortlieb Backroller Classics for the rear. Those, I presume, are large.
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Old 08-25-08, 10:15 AM   #7
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Four large!
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Old 08-25-08, 10:17 AM   #8
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Two larger ones are definitely easier to carry around than four. It's a worhwhile concern if you plan on locking the bike and then looking around places or bumming around in a restaurant.
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Old 08-25-08, 10:28 AM   #9
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Seriously, you're better off with four panniers, to distribute the weight. Another consideration is that, if you'll be on any trains with the bike loaded, it's hard to get two overstuffed rear panniers through the aisles.
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Old 08-25-08, 10:34 AM   #10
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Two larger ones are definitely easier to carry around than four. It's a worhwhile concern if you plan on locking the bike and then looking around places or bumming around in a restaurant.
Do you actually carry them around or take them into restaurants and stores? With very few exceptions, mine stay on the bike pretty much day and night for the entire tour. The theft prone stuff lives in a handlebar bag and that goes with me (it has a shoulder strap).
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Old 09-01-08, 07:50 AM   #11
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I went with 2 smalls in front and put small heavy stuff, tools, utensils, food,etc to balance weight front to back. Large in rear held clothing, light but bulky items, Tent, pad, and sleeping bag strapped to carrier. I tried to have 60% of weight in front.
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