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Old 10-31-10, 11:07 PM   #1
AsanaCycles
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Arkel

I just noticed this new rack offered from Arkel
http://www.arkel-od.com/us/all-categ...neur-rack.html
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Last edited by AsanaCycles; 11-01-10 at 10:16 AM. Reason: add pics
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Old 11-01-10, 12:30 AM   #2
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Nice One! looks like it would be perfect for my randonneur needs
- I tend to take more tools, clothes and food than most - can't get out of my"self-sufficient touring" mind-set, even with SAG wagons and stations
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Old 11-01-10, 03:57 AM   #3
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Nice design. It is clever how they combined the support with the saddle like a bag. Still only 13 lbs weight though. Guess with a frame bag and a roll on the handlebar you could get 20 lbs. Not bad. Asana, do you think this is better than the oversize saddle back bags like you often have in your pictures?
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Old 11-01-10, 11:11 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by safariofthemind View Post
Asana, do you think this is better than the oversize saddle back bags like you often have in your pictures?
No

why? its still a rack, its still a hunk of metal.

it unnecessary metal

the trunk bag is too much "baggage" and little storage.

that is, the whole of the combo, is way too complicated. its a whole lot of material which yields a small cargo.

the Arkel trunk bag is stated to have 700 cu inches at 1lb
the medium Escape Pod from Carousel Design Works comes in at 500 cu inches at 12oz

this comparison is not a fair one.
in that, the BikePacking method is pinpoint focused on compression. Squeezing your items down.
the Escape Pod's design is to squeeze your contents down

the Arkel's Tailrider Trunk bag, is simply carry-on baggage. its a kin to a tote

plus to carry the Tailrider one has to add yet another full pound (495gm stated on Arkel's website: http://www.arkel-od.com/us/all-categ...neur-rack.html)
just in mounting apparatus

which brings the total dry weight to over 2lbs for 700 cu inches of storage which does not compress.
(but you can carry 13lbs!)
2lbs/700 cu in
easily converted thats 350cu inches per pound.
whereas the simple method of a medium Escape Pod comes in at 500 cu in/12oz
easily converted to 667cu inches per pound (compressible)

in reality: The Escape Pod offers nearly DOUBLE the carrying space.

Rando Rack: $90
Tailrider: $109
total: $199

Medium Escape Pod: $160

13lbs:
(in the bikepacking method)

some guys out there can pack everything into less than 13lbs

what does the Arkel setup offer? it brings to market yet another choice

I like the notion of the way the rack hangs from the seatrails... just like the large bikepacking compression seatbags

in comparison:

The Escape Pod is soft and yielding
The Arkel Rando rack is rigid and uncompromising
(think Tao 76)

while I'd dare to suggest that even the likes of the most coveted bag designers in the world of velo-couture
where bling bling baggage struts the pathways...
yes... bikepacking is on their minds.


Rando rack and trunk bag:
$199 for 2lbs to carry 700 cu inches

Escape Pod:
$160 for 12oz to carry 500 cu inches which is compressible
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Old 11-01-10, 11:27 AM   #5
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Escape Pod... adjustable volume
http://www.flickr.com/photos/carouse...7611514005907/
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Old 11-01-10, 02:11 PM   #6
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you know, although I dont really have a need for these sort of bags, I really do see the pt Asana brings up vis a vis the compressibility as well as not having any extra mounting gear, both in weight and for stuff to break if you toss it into the woods. These pts really do make sense and from the diff companies that make these "bike packing" bags, I like how they look well made and are set up to compress nice and tight and not move around no matter if they are full to the brim or half empty--especially for any off roading where the bike is going to be moving around so much more.
Again, for me, an omnipresent rack that I just slap on a pannier or two is a no brainer for my needs, but as an outdoor equipment lover and having an appreciation for neat ideas, these seat post, frame and front handlebar setups do look pretty interesting and a neat use of the space without the weight of mounting doohickies.

some people spend that much money on a meal at a restaurant, for me Outdoor gear is always money well spent, if you use it and you are out there having fun and exercising, its worth it.
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Old 11-01-10, 02:48 PM   #7
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I really like my Arkel Tailrider. I use it on day rides, it holds all my tools, spare tubes, med kit, jacket etc nicely, and has lots of accessibility with the pockets and dual full-length zips. Also has a built-in rain cover. I can get to anything in the bag within seconds.

My touring bike has a rear rack fitted all the time anyway, so there's no additional weight for me in being able to mount the Tailrider.

I probably would not take the Tailrider on tour, though, because I usually keep the tent and sleeping bag on top of the rear rack, and everything else is in the panniers. If I'm using the Arkel GT-54 and GT-18 then there are lots of pockets on those which can replace (in terms of accessibility) what I had in the Tailrider. So for me, the TailRider vs Panniers is a kind of either-or proposition.

The Escape Pod looks interesting for ultra-light touring applications, it's a seat bag on steroids, but I'm not sure that it would give as good access to all the contents - it seems to be a rolltop design, isn't it? That works, I toured with rolltop Ortliebs, no big deal. Whatever floats your boat, basically.

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Old 11-01-10, 03:39 PM   #8
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all good points in regards to accessibility, aesthetics and modular usage of additional baggage.

I always forget the quote, and who said it.
I've read it a few times here and there... I think lately it was in Let my People go Surfing by Yvone Chouinard

and it goes to something like.
make it better by making it simpler

"why buy two pieces of gear when one will do the work of both? Making products as versatile as possible derives from our origins as mountain climbers who had to haul our gear up the mountain on our backs, not in the trunk of an SUV. Besides to carry as little as possible in the mountains is a spiritual tenet of many outdoor enthusiasts, as well as a practical consideration. John Muir like to limit his "supplies" to a tin cup, a loaf of stale bread, and an overcoat. Now its an environmental consideration as well. Everything we personally own that's made, sold, shipped, stored, cleaned, and ultimately thrown away does some environmental harm every step of the way, harm that we're either directly responsible for or is don on our behalf."

and another:

Gransfors Burks AB of Sweden

"What we take, how and what we make, what we waste, is in fact a question of ethics. We have unlimited responsibility for the Total. A responsibility which we try to take, but do not always succeed in. One part of this responsibility is the quality of the products and how many years the product will maintain its durability.
To make a high quality product is a way to pay respect and responsibility to the the customer and the user of the product. A high quality product, in the hands of those who have learned how to use it and how to look after it, will very likely be more durable. This is good for the owner, the user. But this is good as well as part of the greater whole: increased durability means that we take less (decreased consumption of material and energy), that we need to produce less (gives us more time to do other things we think are important or enjoyable), destroy less (less waste)."

as to rain?
"Top notch construction of weatherproof 210D X-Pac Vx21 laminated sailcloth technology fabric and durable 500D Cordura with a heavy duty Hypalon reinforcement under the saddle clamp"

most of the guys out there are now into using SailCloth material. On that tangent I've been using a WingNut Gear Enduro pack, which is made of the stuff.

again, this is another example of simplicity. well thought out... yes.
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Old 11-01-10, 10:08 PM   #9
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Going strictly on volume per pound a Sea to Summit dry sack and an Expedition bagman do quite well

20L (1220 cubic inches) weighs 0.33 lbs
Bagman rack weighs 0.77lbs

so that's 1220/1.1 = 1109 cubic inches/pound.
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Old 11-01-10, 10:31 PM   #10
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Going strictly on volume per pound a Sea to Summit dry sack and an Expedition bagman do quite well

20L (1220 cubic inches) weighs 0.33 lbs
Bagman rack weighs 0.77lbs

so that's 1220/1.1 = 1109 cubic inches/pound.
wow! thats seriously awesome
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Old 11-01-10, 11:24 PM   #11
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re the Expedition bagman support. to be honest, I would not be comfortable having the stress on the rails of my seat with a given amount of weight in whatever bag. We all know that we whack potholes, or go over train tracks etc, and the force working on the seat rails from bouncing over stuff is something I see the advantage of the other type of behind seat bags, as the stress/weight from the bag moving around would be shared by the velcro on the seat post, as well as the other straps. If I was on rough roads,I would definatly go for the strap/velcro type bags.

20litres is about what my Ortlieb panniers hold (one of them) and even with just clothes, it could get fairly heavy and I certainly wouldnt want that on my seat post--EDIT--I meant RAILS.
Those wet/dry bags look amazingly light, but I would watch their toughness, again, with unplanned falling off a rack, or scapping against stuff if offroad. would want to have some duct tape as backup for holes (doable, just have some wrapped around "whatever")

Last edited by djb; 11-02-10 at 06:59 PM.
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Old 11-02-10, 09:10 AM   #12
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re the Expedition bagman support. to be honest, I would not be comfortable having the stress on the rails of my seat with a given amount of weight in whatever bag. We all know that we whack potholes, or go over train tracks etc, and the force working on the seat rails from bouncing over stuff is something I see the advantage of the other type of behind seat bags, as the stress/weight from the bag moving around would be shared by the velcro on the seat post, as well as the other straps. If I was on rough roads,I would definatly go for the strap/velcro type bags.

20litres is about what my Ortlieb panniers hold (one of them) and even with just clothes, it could get fairly heavy and I certainly wouldnt want that on my seat post.
Those wet/dry bags look amazingly light, but I would watch their toughness, again, with unplanned falling off a rack, or scapping against stuff if offroad. would want to have some duct tape as backup for holes (doable, just have some wrapped around "whatever")
I tour with the Bagman and a saddlebag and love the combo. I wouldn't put more than 20lbs on it, but if you keep to those limits it's a simple and elegant way to carry a load.

The Drysack I used is really tough, it's not one of those silnylon things. It's waterproof and has compression straps so you can pull everything tight making the load very stable, similar to a bikepacking bag.
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