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Pannier suggestions

Old 09-05-20, 08:34 PM
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Pannier suggestions

Iíve been out of touring for about 12 years and need to replace my old bags. Whatís some nice front and rear bags to consider. Iím wanting large size panniers. Thanks
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Old 09-05-20, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by sloar View Post
Iíve been out of touring for about 12 years and need to replace my old bags. Whatís some nice front and rear bags to consider. Iím wanting large size panniers. Thanks
Ortlieb. ĎNough said.
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Old 09-05-20, 10:28 PM
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"Ditto" Lots of people use them. I have a couple sets myself.. great grocery haulers too..
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Old 09-05-20, 11:04 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Ortlieb. ĎNough said.
I agree, but ever the contrarian, I'll offer Axiom Panniers as a decent alternative.
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Old 09-06-20, 05:12 AM
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Ortlieb Sport-Packer Plus for the front.

Ortlieb Bike-Packer Plus for the rear.
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Old 09-06-20, 06:24 AM
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Do you want waterproof with no or minimal pockets? Or coated nylon fabric (claimed to be waterproof, it isn't) with more pockets?

Ortlieb is the gold standard for waterproof panniers. Occasionally REI has a good sale price on them once or twice a year. Sierra Trading post occasionally has a limited selection on a good price. My Ortliebs are a bit over 10 years old, they have made some tweaks during the past decade, but as far as I can tell no changes were negative. Mine are the Front Roller and Back Roller. I think the Front Roller name may have changed. I also have the 31 liter Rack Pack. The roller type panniers (the non-City version) have a strap that goes over the top, I use that strap on my front ones to hold my rain gear where it is handy.

Carradry are another option for waterproof. I had back luck with their front ones, but Happy Feet on this forum has bought some since then and he was very happy so perhaps I just got a bad pair. I also have their rear ones. The rear ones had some sewn through seams that leaked on my first trip, I have since seam sealed the seams.

There are many other waterproof brands that I have not tried but others like.

Non-waterproof, I have some Axioms that I got at a garage sale, worked fine for a five week tour but the coated nylon is not waterproof and the seams were not sealed. But I did not expect them to be waterproof so anything I had in them could get wet without impairing my trip. I also have some 10 year old Nashbar ones that I have not found a reason to use them, used them for a tour over a decade ago and they were good enough that I still have them around.

Lots of other non-water proof ones. And some come with rain covers or a rain cover is available for them.

Most of my tours have been with the Ortliebs, but my last tour I tried my rear Carradry and Axioms on the front, not because there was anything wrong with the Ortliebs, but because I had them and decided to try them out. The Ortliebs are better built, more waterproof, slightly heavier, and slightly smaller than the combination of rear Carradry and front Axiom. In the future I will bring the ones that I think will work best for a particular trip, I expect to use both in the future.

First photo, Ortliebs. The 31 liter Rack Pack on top of the rear panniers. Their straps are designed so that you can clip the Rack Pack directly to the non-City version of the Back Rollers.




Second photo, rear Carradry and front Axiom.



ADDENDUM ADDED HOURS LATER:
In the second photo, on top of the dry bag on my rear rack is a black and yellow mesh bag that I sometimes use for damp clothing or laundry that has not dried out yet. That is one problem with waterproof panniers, especially the ones that are almost air tight, you do not want to have damp stuff in them on hot sunny days. I find that damp stuff on top like that does not dry out while I am riding, but it does not get moldy either.

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Old 09-06-20, 06:42 AM
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Definitely waterproof, planning on some long distance self supported trips.
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Old 09-06-20, 08:02 AM
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Arkel makes really good stuff also, and also models that are as waterproof as Ortliebs.
Arkels use traditional bungee and hook method, but the top two attachment points use a cam device to tighten onto rails so that they dont hop off.
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Old 09-06-20, 08:09 AM
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roll down vs packer types with a fold over top --I use both types and the packer types work fine and the roller types have the advantage of being able to put something really long and sticking out and still being able to latch the two clips together with whatever sticking out up top. Handy for some grocery getting and or in daily use (the vast vast majority of the life use of a pannier if you commute by bike) where you can stick in stuff willy nilly like a plant, or a long baguette or whatever and easily ride (not in the rain of course)

both types do allow for overpacking to an extent, again very handy when doing grocery shopping at the end of the day when touring and going to campground or whatever.

as with all outdoor gear, top quality stuff costs more, but in the long run is worth it if you are someone who will use it for many years. Works better, will last more than inexpensive stuff. Such is life.
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Old 09-06-20, 12:28 PM
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Have a look at Arkel. I've had mine for years. They have seen rough service, they've been exposed to road salt, sea salt, blistering +40C days of endless sunshine, -40C winter cold. A couple of years ago riding from Kazakhstan to Uzbekistan, I carried 8 x 2 litre bottles of water in my panniers (probably overloading them) over ~90Km of corduroy dirt road and another 50Km of might as well have not been paved road. I was more worried about the bolts holding my Blackburn racks to my bike then my Arkel panniers, once again they pulled through without complaint.
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Old 09-07-20, 07:00 AM
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Ortlieb are as heavy as hell empty. THAT is though said. The fabric is too stiff and hard to handle. I hate mine and only stick with them because they include a very nice shoulder strap so I can carry them and my bike when getting on trains in Japan. I would not recommend them at all.
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Old 09-07-20, 08:09 AM
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Waddo, do look at the "Plus" models, which are lighter. I have the numbers somewhere but don't recall the exact amount.
I have numerous generations of ortlieb panniers, 3 generations, and my early 90s models, plus ones from 93 probably, are the lightest ones. I've meant to do a thread about this and weighed them all, but never got around to doing it.

for everyone, it's worth looking at pannier weights, but did take into account how a well made pannier will last longer for day inn day out use with commuting like most of us do.

good point to bring up though, and I always bring up how I prefer the plus model of ortlieb handlebar bag because it's lighter than other handlebar bags.
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Old 09-07-20, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by waddo View Post
Ortlieb are as heavy as hell empty. THAT is though said. The fabric is too stiff and hard to handle. I hate mine and only stick with them because they include a very nice shoulder strap so I can carry them and my bike when getting on trains in Japan. I would not recommend them at all.
They are lighter than the comparable Arkel panniers by about 400g. There are lighter panniers out there but those arenít necessarily waterproof. As for stiffness, thatís the reason I like them. They hold their shape. When touring, I donít take usually take them off to carry them around and for commuting, I have other bags I use that are easier to carry.
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Old 09-07-20, 10:56 AM
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I think the City version of the Ortlieb Front or Back Rollers are lighter, but I have not checked the specifications. But the front ones lack the strap that goes over the top, I use that strap to hold my rain gear where it is handy.

I have no complaints about the fabric of Ortlieb panniers. I mentioned above that my Carradry are lighter. But that extra Ortlieb thickness is what makes Ortliebs more durable and long lasting.

When I was riding the Pacific Coast, I met a gal that was on year seven of her long bike tour. She estimated that her bike frame had over 100,000 km on it. But much of the rest of the bike had been replaced, some parts several times. She started in Africa, then Europe and Asia before I met her in N America. She had one pair of Ortielbs that started her seven year (and counting) bike trip. When something like a pair of panniers lasts seven years on a continuous bike tour, that is impressive.
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Old 09-07-20, 11:00 AM
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I choose Arkel bags. They can be hung and removed from the racks with a single hand, stay secure no matter what, no vibration rattling or movement. They can also be adjusted and positioned to fit most any specific bike. Roll-top bags have worked best for me for over a decade now. I also like having 10 separate pockets that can be accessed without having to open the panniers.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/zkKvYEfCB5hBjJi88

Panniers:
Garage, 13.7 lbs. (Left front) - https://photos.app.goo.gl/wtBkagW4fbfQxnJn7
Primary Sleep System, 12 lbs. (Right front)- https://photos.app.goo.gl/s4ZwacKEVL7obUGv6
Kitchen, 14.5 lbs. (Left rear)- https://photos.app.goo.gl/WnqJj7b6UxGNSvjg8
Bedroom/Bathroom, 11 lbs. (Right rear)-https://photos.app.goo.gl/Psj6sHpoiy7jq3JY7
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Old 09-07-20, 02:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
I think the City version of the Ortlieb Front or Back Rollers are lighter, but I have not checked the specifications. But the front ones lack the strap that goes over the top, I use that strap to hold my rain gear where it is handy.

I have no complaints about the fabric of Ortlieb panniers. I mentioned above that my Carradry are lighter. But that extra Ortlieb thickness is what makes Ortliebs more durable and long lasting.

When I was riding the Pacific Coast, I met a gal that was on year seven of her long bike tour. She estimated that her bike frame had over 100,000 km on it. But much of the rest of the bike had been replaced, some parts several times. She started in Africa, then Europe and Asia before I met her in N America. She had one pair of Ortielbs that started her seven year (and counting) bike trip. When something like a pair of panniers lasts seven years on a continuous bike tour, that is impressive.
the city versions are the lightest for their volume , they dont have the inner zippered pouch tihng and the more simple buckle system that attaches to the front and back, so yes, no upper strap or the buckles that you can put a rackpack on.
I have the numbers somewhere, but they are lighter by a reasonable amount compared to the regular rollers , and possibly lighter than the Plus version also (I forget and have the chart of diff weights somewhere, easy to find on the net)

the newer bikepacking 25l pannier set is rather light, lighter than (I think) both the Plus front rollers as well as the 25l City versions.

around here, you only see City versions in Black, and the occasional red, although probably nothing in stores now.
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Old 09-07-20, 02:13 PM
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and dont forget that BBassett does have an electric assist, so his pannier weights should take that into account (Bassett, I mention this in case someone who hasnt toured before sees the weights of your setup)

re Arkel stuff, while Ive never owned any of them, Ive always been impressed by their build quality over the years, top notch construction and materials. They make many models now, so a bit of a blanket statement to say that they are heavy (the older ones were rather heavy) but I suspect the Dolphin or whatever roll down waterproof models are very similar to Ortliebs in weight.....research away folks .
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Old 09-07-20, 04:09 PM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
... Arkel stuff, while Ive never owned any of them, Ive always been impressed by their build quality over the years, top notch construction and materials. They make many models now, so a bit of a blanket statement to say that they are heavy (the older ones were rather heavy) but I suspect the Dolphin or whatever roll down waterproof models are very similar to Ortliebs in weight.....research away folks .
A friend of mine tours with the deluxe version Arkels with dozens of pockets. I think they are a decade and a half old. Then, because he got the red ones and the red ones fade really badly, he leaves the rain covers on them all day every day. They still look like new after a couple coast to coast tours, plus a few other tours thrown in because they don't get any sunlight. But no rain cover for handlebar bag, so that is quite faded, no longer a brilliant red color.

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Old 09-07-20, 04:57 PM
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funny, as I too have a friend who has Arkels and he also leaves the rain covers on all the time. We dont see each other much, but I clearly recall one time on a ride together years ago asking why he had the covers on a non rainy day, and to not have colour fade was the same reason.

again, not from personal use, but the arkel mounting hardware seems to be very robust, as others have confirmed here.
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Old 09-07-20, 05:18 PM
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I've used Ortlieb panniers for the last 13 years which included a total of 2 years actual touring. They are waterproof, durable, and they easy to mount, and remove from the bike We have 5 sets of Ortlieb panniers in our family, and I have never heard any complaints.

This picture shows 4 sets of Ortliebs.


I use the Classic series, my wife likes the Packer Plus series ( blue bike in the background).


On this tour we had 35 days of rain.


Try this with water resistant panniers.
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Old 09-07-20, 05:58 PM
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Nine then. Ten now. Despite use and abuse they still work like new.
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Old 09-07-20, 07:00 PM
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Arkel = Lifetime transferable no receipt required warranty, i.e. if you buy them used they are still under warranty.
Ortlieb = 5 year non-transferable warranty.
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Old 09-07-20, 08:12 PM
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Ortlieb - one big compartment. I like this about them.
Arkel - Lots of smaller pockets.
Both somewhat heavy.
Then there are the Arkel dry-lites.....
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Old 09-07-20, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
and dont forget that BBassett does have an electric assist, so his pannier weights should take that into account (Bassett, I mention this in case someone who hasnt toured before sees the weights of your setup)

re Arkel stuff, while Ive never owned any of them, Ive always been impressed by their build quality over the years, top notch construction and materials. They make many models now, so a bit of a blanket statement to say that they are heavy (the older ones were rather heavy) but I suspect the Dolphin or whatever roll down waterproof models are very similar to Ortliebs in weight.....research away folks .
Yeah... weight is way less a problem for me. I also use pannier rain covers bright red silnylon pack covers and one for the trailer. Each pannier has its own rain cover and a pack of wet wipes stowed in the outside pockets. I use them mostly to keep everything clean since the panniers are "water-proof" and I have rolltop water-proof bags lining each pannier. The only moisture that gets in the panniers I put there, like stowing a wet tarp. I find that people tend to prefer whatever they have purchased without having tried any alternatives. A good pannier keeps thing dry, hangs on the bike where you want them, are easy to mount and remove but secure, and be easy to access the contents. Since volume is more important than carrying more weight for me, I picked panniers with the most volume I could find. There is no best, they have similar designs (pockets/no pockets), comparable materials... until you compare guarantees. I have used the **** out of an Arkel bar-bag too. The only cover I can find for it is the neon yellow that Arkel sells and I refuse to look at that color while riding. It's been t o t a l l y soaked, saturated and the content stay completely dry. I still wish I could find a red silnylon cover. I have an XL shower cap with big ladybugs on it but my pigheaded masculinity has kept me from ever donning it.
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Old 09-08-20, 04:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug64 View Post
...
Try this with water resistant panniers.


I have done that with my Ortliebs too. But no photo during cleaning.

I could not fit fenders into my S&S case, thus this tour I had no fenders on the bike.



And a day long rain event on a gravel road left the bike and everything else pretty messy. The campground showers were outside, not indoors. I took the panniers into the shower to wash them off.

I have bought maybe half a dozen pairs of fenders since then to try. Sometime soon I need to drop most of the failures off to the local bike charity, I think I finally figured out which fenders I can pack in the case with the bike for future tours.
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