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  1. #1
    Senior Member deepakvrao's Avatar
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    Handlebar bag for DSLR and one lens?

    Did a lot of search and came down to Ortlieb and the Topeak tourguide. Mixed reports on the topeak mount and apparently space is wasted with padding. My bar is 40 cem as measured from center of one hood to the other.

    Is the Ortlieb really worth the extra money?

    Wayne [touringstore.com] is putting together a set of racks and panniers for my wifes and my non touring road bikes for some light touring. If we like the concept of touring I guess the same stuff can be moved to regular touring bikes.

    Again is ortlieb worth the extra money? The one advantage is that the new ones can be tilted back to increase the heel clearance.

    Any other suggestions for handlebar bags?

  2. #2
    Senior Member bobframe's Avatar
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    I just ordered a full set of Ortlieb Bike Packer Plus panniers and a handlebar bag from Wayne-they should be delivered this week. He was terrific to deal with- took lots of time with me and answered all of my dumb questions. Plus he offered some great discounts on the whole set. I had to buy them sight unseen, so I had to buy based on the recommendations from many others - mostly from this forum. wish I could have inspected them before buying, but bike touring seems to be such a niche sport that buying sight unseen is part of the process. Thank goodness for forums like this one where you can at least benefit from experineced folks with no particular "ax to grind".

    My guess is that any of the "top brands" are going to be quality products-something I define as being effective at delivering the functionality you require and durable enough to last a long time under fairly harsh conditions. The problem for me was defining my needs. For example, did I "need" lots of separate compartments or did I "need" total waterproofing? The list goes on. At the end of the day, I took a stab at what seemed to make sense and went with my gut. Time will tell if I guessed right or not.

    Worst case, I hate the way they work and I get half of my money back by ebaying them and get what I really need. Such is life.

    Handlebar bag was a dilemma for me- I've had one before and found it pretty handy. OTOH, I did a transamerica fully supported tour and valued not having anything there to block my hand movement. I worry about having any kind of weight that high on the front end of my bike--concerned about how it will affect handling. I decided to get one and give it a try- I really like the idea of having my raincoat, arm warmers, camera, money, snacks, ****** (maybe kidding, maybe not), etc. close at hand.

  3. #3
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deepakvrao View Post
    Did a lot of search and came down to Ortlieb and the Topeak tourguide. Mixed reports on the topeak mount and apparently space is wasted with padding. My bar is 40 cem as measured from center of one hood to the other.

    Is the Ortlieb really worth the extra money?

    Wayne [touringstore.com] is putting together a set of racks and panniers for my wifes and my non touring road bikes for some light touring. If we like the concept of touring I guess the same stuff can be moved to regular touring bikes.

    Again is ortlieb worth the extra money? The one advantage is that the new ones can be tilted back to increase the heel clearance.

    Any other suggestions for handlebar bags?
    Yea. It's worth the money. Waterproof without some goofy external cover, the mounting on them is rock solid and the camera insert cushions your expensive camera nicely. It pops off nicely so that you can carry it with you.

    The bag really isn't that much more than just about any other bag and you did pay a lot of money for a DSLR. Why trust the camera to a cheap bag?
    Stuart Black
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  4. #4
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    ortlieb for the win. . add 'ease of entry while riding' if you like to shoot on the fly.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

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    Senior Member deepakvrao's Avatar
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    Thaks guys - that seals it. Rock solid mount is worth it alone I think.

    I suppose the same goes for panniers? Stick to Ortlieb?

    Bobframe,

    I agree with you. Being new to this, deciding what is my need is the biggest issue. Thank god for forums and the internet.

    Unlike you guys, as I live in India, its not even easy to sell off what you dont like.

  6. #6
    Senior Member bobframe's Avatar
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    If you want to make a fashion statement, you'll surely want the panniers to match the HBB, no?

    AKA, I chose the same brand because it was included in his"Matched Set" pricing. I think if you check his "set" pricing, the discount is enough to actually pay for the HBB. So, buy the panniers, get the HBB free. Suchadeal!!!!!!!!

  7. #7
    Senior Member deepakvrao's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobframe View Post
    If you want to make a fashion statement, you'll surely want the panniers to match the HBB, no?

    AKA, I chose the same brand because it was included in his"Matched Set" pricing. I think if you check his "set" pricing, the discount is enough to actually pay for the HBB. So, buy the panniers, get the HBB free. Suchadeal!!!!!!!!
    Thanks for the tip - never checked that.

  8. #8
    Senior Member johnknappcc's Avatar
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    No on the Tourguide, I have it, no way it would fit my 40D + lens. However, I'm not sure I would want to carry my DSLR with my on my bike. I do it in is lowepro case for short trips but not for extended touring.

  9. #9
    Senior Member bobframe's Avatar
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  10. #10
    Senior Member deepakvrao's Avatar
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    Thanks Bob, John.

    Stuart,

    Would I need the medium or large Ortlieb for say a 40D, 24-105 and a 10-22? Would a large be too unwieldy to handle.

    I must say that Wayne of thetouringstore.com is a fantastic guy to deal with.

  11. #11
    Senior Member deepakvrao's Avatar
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    Another question guys.

    If I mount the Ortlieb Handlebar bag without the extender, do you get enough place to wrap your hands around the handlebar? I know it says 2 inches but is that correct? and enough?

  12. #12
    Senior Member jurjan's Avatar
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    My GF uses her ortlieb (+ camera insert) for her D40 and 18 - something (200? 300) lens.
    it's a tight fit, but it fits. She has no problems with the bag being too close to the handlebar.
    have a nice day,
    Jurjan

  13. #13
    Vietnamtreker victorphung's Avatar
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    I use my camera bag and hang it on my handle bar like this. it works for me.




  14. #14
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deepakvrao View Post
    Another question guys.

    If I mount the Ortlieb Handlebar bag without the extender, do you get enough place to wrap your hands around the handlebar? I know it says 2 inches but is that correct? and enough?
    I'll save space and answer both questions here.

    1. I think I have a large bag. I use a Pentax 100d and a spare lens. The Pentax isn't really that small and I don't have a lot of extra space. I'd probably go with the large. Check with Wayne, however.

    2. I don't use extenders with my bag and haven't had a problem with room. I don't have interrupter levers, however. If you do, you may want to consider them but otherwise there's lot of space.
    Stuart Black
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    An Good Ol' Fashion Appalachian Butt Whoopin'.

  15. #15
    pedaling furiously
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    I have a hard case for my Nikon kit:

    D70s
    14-24 f/2.8
    24-120 f/3.5-5.6
    80-200 f/2.8

    The kit is worth a hell of lot more than my bike, my bags and everything IN the bags combined. It goes into a waterproof hardcase (similar to the Pelican 1500) lined with foam. The case is secured to the top of my back rack.

  16. #16
    Senior Member bobframe's Avatar
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    Deepak,

    Just got my Ortlieb medium handlebar bag and put my D70 (with a 28-105mm) in the bag. The interior dimensions of the bag are (roughly) 9 1/4" across the length x 7" deep (to the top edge of the bag-the lid extends another inch or two above the bag) x 4 1/2" to 5 1/2" wide (the opening of the bag is curved along the hinged edge).

    Hope this helps.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  17. #17
    Senior Member deepakvrao's Avatar
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    Thanks guys.

    Stuart,

    I musta have read a hundred threads on ortliebs and I remember in some thread you were asked for pics and you said you had not 'gone digital' yet - maybe 2004? I see that you have now :-)

    Bob, Victor - thanks for the pics.

    BTW is this sort of collapsible? Can a friend put it in a standard suitcase? Saves me shipping as well as customs on two bags.

  18. #18
    Senior Member bobframe's Avatar
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    I think I understand your question: Is the HBB collapsible? Answer: Nope. The sides and bottom are quite rigid- looks like they use a thin piece of plastic to give them shape. The lid also has some rigidity to it. So, while the panniers are very collapsible, the HBB is not.

    Outside dimensions of HBB are: 11" wide x 9 1/2" tall x 6 3/4" deep.

    It might fit in a suitcase- you could fill it with socks and underwear and then pack it in the suitcase.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Doug64's Avatar
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    Ortlieb's are worth the extra$$. My D70 w/18-70 fits easily in the HBB. I don't usually take it on tour, but have hauled it around on local rides. This is another reason to go with Ortlieb's. Our netbook is my wife's pannier, and a Nikon P5000 is in her HBB. I keep the other point and shoot in mine.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  20. #20
    Senior Member deepakvrao's Avatar
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    Thanks Bob.

    Doug, those are 'packer' Ortliebs? Any reason why you chose them over the 'rollers'? Can you access a 'roller' when it is on the bike?

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