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Handlebar bags

Old 09-18-21, 04:32 AM
  #1  
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Handlebar bags

I'm in need of a new handlebar bag. I need a waterproof bag that I can access while riding. My wife has an ortlieb bag and loves it so I may just get another. Does anyone have any experience with the Arkel handlebar bag?
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Old 09-18-21, 10:07 AM
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Avoid the traditional style HB bag with the metal to metal mount. It rattles on every bump. I returned one several years ago.

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Old 09-18-21, 12:36 PM
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That is the Arkel bag I was looking at. I will definitely skip.
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Old 09-18-21, 01:10 PM
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Ortleib.

I asked for suggestions on panniers here and other places and Ortleib always came to the top of the list. I don't regret the purchase what so ever. The whole set has been fantastic, including the handlebar bag.

I have the Ultimate 6 Plus, I believe. It is not the biggest size they have, it is the next size down. The reason was I wanted the red bags and at the time I ordered the set the vendor only had the smaller size handlebar bag in red (I'm actually not sure if, at the time, they even made the big one in red).

In any event, the bag has been great. I did a tour last Fall that was mostly wet. It was hard to keep gear dry with my hands wet and putting wet gear back in the panniers, but I tried my best. I did not sense any water getting in to any of the bags while riding, it was more getting in and out of the bags etc.

I posted this picture in another thread recently also. Something to consider is how you mount the handlebar bag. If you look close you'll see a 2nd stem and dummy handlebar - that is what the mirror is mounted to. The handlebar bag is on that dummy bar, as is my bell on the other side you can't see.

By putting accessories on the dummy bar I keep the handlebars clear. I have circulation issues in my hands and I need to move my hands around all over the handlebars to keep them working so keeping the handlebars clear is a necessity for me so I have the room for moving my hand positions. It might look like the dummy bar would interfere too much on the drops, but it actually doesn't interfere at all. It works really well.


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Old 09-18-21, 04:00 PM
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Dang, can't beat the old Cannondale bags. They almost never wore out. Sometimes, you can find them on E-Bay.
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Old 09-19-21, 04:41 AM
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Might want to check out this new bag that was just released last year
routewerks.us

I have not bought one yet but seriously considering it
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Old 09-19-21, 08:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Chris! View Post
I'm in need of a new handlebar bag. I need a waterproof bag that I can access while riding. My wife has an ortlieb bag and loves it so I may just get another. Does anyone have any experience with the Arkel handlebar bag?
Iíve used an Ortlieb since 2003. Itís been through many a downpour without issues.
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Old 09-19-21, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Chris! View Post
That is the Arkel bag I was looking at. I will definitely skip.
I use the Ortlieb bag and have zero complaints. They are pricy, but great quality and durability. If you like the Arkel bag, all you need to do is cut up an old tube to create a 'gasket' between the bars and the metal attachment hardware and the rattling is gone. As you know from your wifes bag, it locks and can be easily detached. I may be wrong but it appears that the Arkel bag doesn't detach easily which is something that you may want to consider.

Last edited by MAK; 09-19-21 at 09:20 PM.
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Old 09-20-21, 05:41 AM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by BobG View Post
Avoid the traditional style HB bag with the metal to metal mount. It rattles on every bump. I returned one several years ago.
interesting Bob. I completely believe you but this is the first that I've heard of this complaint. A friend of mine has one and the times we've ridden together, he's neither complained nor did I hear anything.
But again, I don't doubt your experience, and I get it, I hate stuff like that. Any sounds like that bug me riding.
I bought the same model used a few years back and gave it to a friend, played around with it for a while and I recall the engagement point to be good and solid, rattle free anyway.

All that said, while the arkel stuff is vertpy well made, I always found their hbags to be heavy compared to the ortliebs, although the ease of mounting dismounting the metal arkel mount is certainly simpler.

nowadays though there seem to be lots of neat waterproof handlebar systems for bikepacking, but imo the click on click off traditional hbags still have advantages for most touring. Rougher surfaces all the time will still be better with strap on drybag systems.
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Old 09-20-21, 08:18 AM
  #10  
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what is happening here?
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Old 09-20-21, 09:17 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
what is happening here?
Read.

Originally Posted by KC8QVO View Post
I posted this picture in another thread recently also. Something to consider is how you mount the handlebar bag. If you look close you'll see a 2nd stem and dummy handlebar - that is what the mirror is mounted to. The handlebar bag is on that dummy bar, as is my bell on the other side you can't see.

By putting accessories on the dummy bar I keep the handlebars clear. I have circulation issues in my hands and I need to move my hands around all over the handlebars to keep them working so keeping the handlebars clear is a necessity for me so I have the room for moving my hand positions. It might look like the dummy bar would interfere too much on the drops, but it actually doesn't interfere at all. It works really well.
The suggestion, in short, was mounting the handlebar bag, and other accessories, to a 2nd dummy bar for more "space". Just a suggestion and working example of it, that's all. What "handlebar bag" someone chooses is part of the equation. The mounting was already brought up earlier in the thread from BobG and the HB metal mount. The 2nd dummy bar is a "way outside the box" solution that I'd venture a guess no one thinks of unless they have seen it before, or are creative thinkers and see the problems of mounting the bag and accessories to their handlebar. Then it is an "after the fact" thought. So by offering the example here of what I did hopefully that helps others on the same subject of handlebar bags and mounting.
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Old 09-20-21, 09:46 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by KC8QVO View Post
Read.



The suggestion, in short, was mounting the handlebar bag, and other accessories, to a 2nd dummy bar for more "space". Just a suggestion and working example of it, that's all. What "handlebar bag" someone chooses is part of the equation. The mounting was already brought up earlier in the thread from BobG and the HB metal mount. The 2nd dummy bar is a "way outside the box" solution that I'd venture a guess no one thinks of unless they have seen it before, or are creative thinkers and see the problems of mounting the bag and accessories to their handlebar. Then it is an "after the fact" thought. So by offering the example here of what I did hopefully that helps others on the same subject of handlebar bags and mounting.
I more so referred to everything on the bike 2 gallons of water daisy chain dangling around off the front wheel, a cb(is that one?), wires going from everywhere to everywhere, what looks like an actual outdoor extension cord, etc.
Is this in a remote location where you have no access to anything for days on end? It just isnt anything I see...ever, so it caught my eye.
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Old 09-20-21, 10:01 AM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
I more so referred to everything on the bike 2 gallons of water daisy chain dangling around off the front wheel, a cb(is that one?), wires going from everywhere to everywhere, what looks like an actual outdoor extension cord, etc.
Is this in a remote location where you have no access to anything for days on end? It just isnt anything I see...ever, so it caught my eye.
More reading. In an effort to not hijack this thread, reference the thread linked below. There is a gear break-down in the video in that thread. The description below the video (on youtube) has timestamps of the different gear categories to help you navigate through (otherwise it is a long video if you watch it start to finish).
Ohio to Erie Tour Oct '20, Gear, Trip Pics

Post 19 in that thread is the 2nd leg (southern end) of that trail/route.
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Old 09-20-21, 11:32 AM
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I just put my camera in my Ortlieb bar bag about 10 minutes ago. We will be leaving on a 2-week tour in Oregon in about 2 hours. I've been using Ortlieb bags for about 15 years, and they are waterproof!

My family is heavily invested in Ortlieb bags; my wife and I, with our daughters


Oregon Coast- this was during the dry season

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Old 09-20-21, 05:45 PM
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I just went with the orlieb. It will match my panniers and frame bag. Of it ain't broke dont fix it so I guess I should not have even looked elsewhere
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Old 09-20-21, 05:58 PM
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Just for the record I have an Arkel bag and love it.
I have no problem with a rattle - full or empty but lining everything up can be a bit finicky.
I don't like the Ortlieb bag (never tried one) but have read of a few accounts of fixing, especially cable, failure.

One flaw with the Arkel is that a cover is required for 100% waterprofness and the Arkel cover is not cheap. But a cheaper solution can be improvised.
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Old 09-20-21, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by HobbesOnTour View Post
Just for the record I have an Arkel bag and love it.
I have no problem with a rattle - full or empty but lining everything up can be a bit finicky.
I don't like the Ortlieb bag (never tried one) but have read of a few accounts of fixing, especially cable, failure.

One flaw with the Arkel is that a cover is required for 100% waterprofness and the Arkel cover is not cheap. But a cheaper solution can be improvised.
There is a young guy in Europe that is a traveling musician, of sorts. I don't recall how I came across his videos, but he did a review of Arkel bags a while back that I thought was pretty good. His youtube channel is linked below.

I found it a bit odd that touring panniers/bags could be popular if they were not waterproof. However, something that was brought up in the video review was that was a consideration - and the route that was taken was to put gear in waterproof bags in the panniers. I suppose that is one solution. To each their own, I suppose.

After only 4 days of nice weather, and the rest wet, on the 1st leg of my Ohio to Erie trip last Fall - I can't imagine not having waterproof bags. I keep all my stuff I need access to on-the-go in the handlebar bag - my phone, note pad, snacks, and frequently used tools. Having those in other bags inside the handlebar bag would be a challenge.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfK...MqhsqcJ0aRfaag

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Old 09-22-21, 03:20 PM
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I pains me to see a bike with front panniers and with bottles of bottled water being hauled around the countryside. One does not really need to take the kitchen sink on a tour or evening dress clothes. There are laundromats to wash clothes and compact water purifiers for drinking water. The only advantage of all that gear and weight is it will make you much faster on the downhill sections.
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Old 09-22-21, 10:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Calsun View Post
I pains me to see a bike with front panniers and with bottles of bottled water being hauled around the countryside. ....
Then I apologize for causing you great pain when you see I have three liters of water on my bike.



The Smartwater one liter size bottles were not sold in the county where the photo was taken, I brought the bottles from home because they hold a full liter and fit nicely in a bottle cage. But the one under the downtube needed a velcro strap to keep it in the cage.
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