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  1. #1
    Embracing the fredness herbm's Avatar
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    Rear rack bag vs Carradice

    I am going to be doing some light credit card touring....5 days down the Ca coast
    but also want to use it for commuting to work...
    I am looking at the the Jandd Rear RackPack II and the Carradice probably the Nelson.
    Also looked at the Lezyne Trunk bag and Topeak, but I think they are a bit too small.

    I was looking for opinions on the best way to go. Any good/bad things about one or the other?

    thanks
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  2. #2
    Senior Member tarwheel's Avatar
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    I use a Carradice Barley for commuting. I really like it but found that I needed to use a Bagman rack for it work. Otherwise it hit the backs of my legs when I pedaled and swayed a lot. One of the nice things about the Carradice bags is that they center the weight so it doesn't affect handling much. I will probably buy another one with larger capacity, either a Pendle or Low-Saddle Longflap, for occasions when I need more space.
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  3. #3
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    Carradice, no doubt about that.

    Once my bike is painted black (in a year or two ) I will mount a Carradice as well. Right now it just doesn't match the color and style of the bike.

  4. #4
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    FWIW, Carradice or oversized saddle bags have little appeal to me. They're well-made, but expensive and less versatile than a rack.

    E.g. a Nelson + Bagman support = $170 or so. A decent rack + cheap panniers = $70. A Topeak rack + a waterproof stuff sack + straps = $55.

    A Carradice saddle bag will also put the weight significantly higher than panniers, and a little bit higher than a trunk bag or a stuff sack on top of the rack.

  5. #5
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    I used a Carradice Nelson Longflap along with a Bagman quick-release support for my tour down the Pacific Coast last year. Many people love Carradice. I do, too, but I'm also willing to tell you the downsides to the setup...

    First, as Bacciagalupe suggests, it's expensive. The bags themselves are pricey and the Bagman support is almost a requirement, in my mind. The center section of the bag tends to sag a bit so if you don't have tons of clearance between the saddle rails and rear tire you'll end up with the bag rubbing on the tire when you hit bumps. The upside to the Bagman is that it does add quite a bit of stability to the setup. And the QR version makes it super-easy to remove the bag from the bike.

    Second, as Bacciagalupe points out, its put weight very high on the bike. I found that this did affect handling a bit. You don't notice it much when you're in the saddle pedaling down a flat road, but if you stand to pedal the bike feels very tippy. I got used to this very quickly and never had a problem with it, but it's a bit unnerving at first.

    Third, there isn't enough adjustability in the Carradice straps. My Nelson Longflap works best when it's full or over-full. If it's less than full, the straps will be on their last notch and it will feel like things are going to fall out of the side pockets or slide around the main compartment. If I were going to commute with a Carradice bag, I'd need something significantly smaller than the Nelson Longflap. For me, the Nelson Longflap is a size that really only works for touring, which is why mine is sitting in a closet gathering dust for most of the year.

    And finally, the Carradice bags don't have handles. I found this to be more annoying than it would seem at first glance. Trying to carry a handle-free duffel bag, a shopping basket, and grab groceries off a shelf requires at least 3 hands, maybe 4. For $100+, it would sure be nice if you didn't have to kludge together your own carrying handle...

  6. #6
    Formerly Known as Newbie Juha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sstorkel
    And finally, the Carradice bags don't have handles.
    The other QR mounting system (I forget the name, but it isn't the Bagman) does provide a handle. IMO the handle is essential.

    --J
    To err is human. To moo is bovine.

    Who is this General Failure anyway, and why is he reading my drive?


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  7. #7
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Ive had a Carradura Saddle bag for years, Nylon canvas version is sewn with a pocket for a minirack in the bottom,
    supplied minirack supports bag , and eliminates any swaying.

    now also Have a super C, too, sits on my rear tubus rack, the snap side release buckles are quicker than buckles,
    but not sure I like the flap pattern.
    sewn darts make it shaped.. nylon sleeve inside not waterproof coated.

  8. #8
    Senior Member tarwheel's Avatar
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    Regarding costs, if you order Carradice products direct from England (such as Wiggle), the prices are much, much lower. Eg, Wiggle sells Barley and Pendle bags for about $45, with free shipping if your total order is about $75 or more.

  9. #9
    Embracing the fredness herbm's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for the great info....very helpful!

    fietsbob..how did you attach the super C? I like that ...but it isnt really made for a rear rack is it?
    Wheel Sucker Extraordinaire

  10. #10
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Rack is supporting it from underneath, I have the loop that would have a strap go around the seatpost ,
    going down to the rack instead, but it's still attached to the saddle at the top..
    some saddles such as Brooks B17 have bag loops..

    I'm using weather resistant plastic base saddles , made a Kludge using a Mintoura
    back of the saddle double waterbottle cage mount.

    It gets 2 P clamps around the Dowel across the bag, then screws into
    the upper 2 threaded bosses of the water cage thing.

    The lower 2 on each side get Sawed off.

  11. #11
    Embracing the fredness herbm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Rack is supporting it from underneath, I have the loop that would have a strap go around the seatpost ,
    going down to the rack instead, but it's still attached to the saddle at the top..
    some saddles such as Brooks B17 have bag loops..

    I'm using weather resistant plastic base saddles , made a Kludge using a Mintoura
    back of the saddle double waterbottle cage mount.

    It gets 2 P clamps around the Dowel across the bag, then screws into
    the upper 2 threaded bosses of the water cage thing.

    The lower 2 on each side get Sawed off.
    Wow..thanks....sounds pretty MacGyver, will have to think about this!
    Wheel Sucker Extraordinaire

  12. #12
    Bicycle Lifestyle AsanaCycles's Avatar
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  13. #13
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    It works out well enough, with my Trekking bike I wrap the AXA ring lock's chain around my seatpost ,

    and over the 2 arms sticking backwards, they bend down and are spaced the same
    as the holes in the bag that the usual straps go thru,
    then I tie my mini pump onto the bracing dowel inside the bag.

    sets the bag back further than strapping it to saddle loops would. a good thing..

    The Randonneur set like good sized front handlebar bags with a small rack beneath them and fittings to the handlebar
    that keep the bags as low on the front as practical, certainly no higher than the bars themselves, and plenty of room to grip anywhere on the bar top.

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