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Panniers... who likes what?

Old 10-11-05, 06:47 PM
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BLM
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Panniers... who likes what?

I am sure this has been posted many times before, but I was just curious about what brands and/or model panniers you like and why do you like them? I am in the market for my first set of bags and just want to get some honest opinions on what people like.

What bags do you like?
What do you use them for (distance, etc)?


Thanks for any insight.

blm
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Old 10-11-05, 07:09 PM
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I like Ortlieb (ok, everybody does); I also like lone peak! Their website's not much, but if interested, ask for their printed brochure. Great bags at a great price; high quality and all US made in Utah!

Order from Wayne at thetouringstore.com , of course! He's great - and cheap!
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Old 10-11-05, 07:24 PM
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I use Axiom LaSalle's and have been very happy with them. I've done 3 weeks in Europe, 3 months in Australia, about a week through the Icefield Parkway, several short trips, plus I've used them as luggage (not specifically cycle-touring) over a period of about 4 weeks in the US this summer.

They were inexpensive, and just the right size with exactly the number of pockets I wanted. They've also got rain covers for bad weather.

The new LaSalle's are even more attractive, and if mine ever wear out, that's what I'd be looking at to replace them.
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Old 10-11-05, 07:31 PM
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Originally Posted by BLM
I am sure this has been posted many times before, but I was just curious about what brands and/or model panniers you like and why do you like them? I am in the market for my first set of bags and just want to get some honest opinions on what people like.

What bags do you like?
What do you use them for (distance, etc)?


Thanks for any insight.

blm
Arkel T54 & T34 for self-supported touring, just the T34s for light touring, and I have a cheap set of Avenirs (sp?) for commuting. Arkels are expensive, but worth it. I've also used Carradice (still use a Carradice saddle bag) and Ortlieb, they are also a great choice.
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Old 10-11-05, 07:40 PM
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I'll second the Loan Peaks (and Wayne at thetouringstore.com). I have the P400 for the rear and P099 for the front. I use the P099 for the rear on a different bike when I commuted and needed the storage.

I have had them a couple of years and the bags have been reliable. The only thing is they are not waterproof. I generally plan better and put a cover over them in rainy conditions but I did get caught one day in the rain and the things on the top inside got wet.

I do love the hooks though. They are secure, never a problem. A previous set of panniers I had (don't rememebr the brand) used to come off occasionally when going over bumps I hated that.

I am sure the upper end panniers have features I don't even know I need. But the Loan Peaks are a good performance/price pannier.
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Old 10-11-05, 07:53 PM
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I love my Arkel T-42s. Perfect panniers for me have a big main compartment, a rear and top pockets and a mesh pocket on the side for quick access/drying. That's what the T-42s are. And they're well-made, not just well manufactured but well though-out. They have a stiff frame so they don't get sloppy when looking for something. Access to the main compartment is the best I'ver seen and the smiley zippers do work. I don't care much for the detachable pocket. It's not as useful as the one on the GT-54, but the straps are extremely useful for me to carry my tripod.

I use GT-30 in front which I like very much. I would prefer a square/rectangle instead of a tapered shape though. Funny coz I mentionned it to Arkel and this year they were replaced with GT-34... with a square shape.

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Old 10-11-05, 10:02 PM
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I used Serratus Mountain paniers, each one like a cute little backpack with spindrift collar, and locking flap. Worked great, but are they still made? I'm solidly in the simple bag camp, without too much gear. People keep inventing better gear, I;ve been watching it for over 30 years. It is almost always heavier.

If I didn't already have these paniers, I probably would have made some out of plywood. I made some nice plywood ones for my Mum, and one can integrate the panier and rack into one unit. They are more aero I would guess, and they are easier to find stuff in and pull it out.
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Old 10-11-05, 11:05 PM
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I like my Ortlieb they work great and they are easy to take off the bike.I can't comment on the other brands since I haven't used anything else.
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Old 10-12-05, 01:08 AM
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The following list of panniers that I have used over the years will mean little or nothing to younger or newer bike tourists: Kirtland,TouringCyclist,KangarooBaggs,Overland Equipment and Robert Beckman Designs.
I settled on the Beckman panniers twenty years ago and am still using them on and off road for loaded touring with great pleasure. The last long tour along the Divide Ride from Canada through Colorado.
The Beckman panniers combined with and designed for Bruce Gordon CroMoly racks back then became an extension of my bike rather than a set constantly moving and swaying objects front and rear.
Check out his panniers, racks and bikes at: https://www.coinet.com/~beckman/index.html

Not cheap except over the long haul then priceless.
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Old 10-12-05, 04:50 AM
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My Robert Beckman panniers are the best I've ever used...worth every penny.
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Old 10-12-05, 04:54 AM
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I like my Carradice Super C. They are light, tough, water-resistant with a quick-release mounting system that locks. They also have a heel cutout shape and are repairable and modifiable.
I have taken a couple of slides along the road and they survived.

The Ortleibs are fine for cold, wet conditions but can become mildew colonies in hot weather.
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Old 10-12-05, 08:39 AM
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I used Serratus Mountain paniers, each one like a cute little backpack with spindrift collar, and locking flap. Worked great, but are they still made?
Serratus doesn't exist anymore. I believe MEC will have it's own line of panniers (not sure).
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Old 10-12-05, 08:50 AM
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I love c.1975 Peugeot cotton panniers but they're next to impossible to find today.
Picking up a pair of Arkel Samurai this week - I'll post my results with those.

Note: full submersion test with Samurai:
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Old 10-12-05, 11:18 AM
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Bob Beckman (known as Needleworks in the 80s to early 90s) packs. I think they may be called RBD Designs now also. Bob will customize your bags (within reason). And they are very well made. Priced somewhat comparably to Arkle.

Happy Trails
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Old 10-12-05, 11:33 AM
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I use Madden Buzzards and Baby Buzzards. I like the toploading paniers after tearing through zippers on my Nashbars and then Cannondale side loads.
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Old 10-12-05, 11:46 AM
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I have Carradice Super C's, front and rear sets.
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Old 10-12-05, 01:50 PM
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lemme see...kirtland, lone peak, overlander, serratus and now Ortlieb.

I used the Ortliebs for a month in Norway through some torrential rain -they were great.

Not saying others wouldn't be just as good or better, but I am happy with the Ortliebs
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Old 10-12-05, 06:14 PM
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I'm a fan of Jandd bags. Their "Hurricane" bags are similar to Ortliebs, and other dry type bags (new models and colors are now on their site).

There regular (non-dry) bags have also held up well for me on tour (and commuting). They have some nifty options: expandable zipper bellows (say for loading up with extra food), and an outer pocket with mesh sides (for drying clothes & such while riding).

My previous setup was two Hurricane bags on the rear rack, and two smaller non-dry bag types up front. When I get around to it, I'll be giving an Arkel Bug a try up front (for the daybag/backpack option).
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Old 10-13-05, 03:11 AM
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I had a pair from Nashbar that literally lasted for decades of touring/commuting. I'm pretty sure that they were Cannondale knockoffs. I just purchased a replacement set of Lone Peak. The Lone Peaks seem to be well made, but I wish they had more outside pockets. They are also smaller than I anticipated.
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Old 10-13-05, 08:23 AM
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I loved my Cannondale Overlands, side-loading, flat top, lots of exterior pockets. Too bad they got ruined in a crash. The interior frame shattered. Had the Lone Peak Sundances in front, they worked fine, I thought the attachment system (platic hooks with clips) was a little weak - not that they ever came off. Those got ruined in the crash too.

Haven't used my new Arkel's yet. They are heavy, but they look great. Can't wait!
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Old 10-14-05, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Erick L
Serratus doesn't exist anymore. I believe MEC will have it's own line of panniers (not sure).
This is true, sadly. MEC actually purchased Serratus at one point, but it was difficult to make a go of things when finished goods from the east ended up costing less than the raw materials Serratus needed to make bags & backpacks.

There is still some Serratus stuff left in stores, but there does not seem to be a replacement for panniers at the moment.

I still have and use a set of Serratus panniers that I purchased circa 1987. Good stuff.
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Old 10-14-05, 02:19 PM
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Real class:

https://www.rivbike.com/webalog/baggage_racks/20110.html

These aren't 100% waterproof but then I tend to be a fair weather rider.
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Old 10-14-05, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Erick L
I love my Arkel T-42s. Perfect panniers for me have a big main compartment, a rear and top pockets and a mesh pocket on the side for quick access/drying. That's what the T-42s are. And they're well-made, not just well manufactured but well though-out. They have a stiff frame so they don't get sloppy when looking for something. Access to the main compartment is the best I'ver seen and the smiley zippers do work. I don't care much for the detachable pocket. It's not as useful as the one on the GT-54, but the straps are extremely useful for me to carry my tripod.

I use GT-30 in front which I like very much. I would prefer a square/rectangle instead of a tapered shape though. Funny coz I mentionned it to Arkel and this year they were replaced with GT-34... with a square shape.

I agree 100 % I bought the T42's and rain covers awesome bags best I have owned so far...
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Old 10-14-05, 02:45 PM
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I forgot to mention one thing that struck me about Arkel: lifetime, no-receipt-needed, fully-transferrable warranty.

Not knocking any other manufacturer but I don't know how many of them stand behind their panniers like that.

They make what must be several dozen models of pannier to fit any application.
(FWIW, I have a soft spot for Carradice, Berthoud, Brooks and Rivendell Baggins - they just aren't available locally...)
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Old 10-14-05, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by af895
I forgot to mention one thing that struck me about Arkel: lifetime, no-receipt-needed, fully-transferrable warranty.

Not knocking any other manufacturer but I don't know how many of them stand behind their panniers like that.

They make what must be several dozen models of pannier to fit any application.
(FWIW, I have a soft spot for Carradice, Berthoud, Brooks and Rivendell Baggins - they just aren't available locally...)
Arkel stands behind their guarantee as well. I had a small problem with my Bug and Arkel offered to pay (and in fact did pay) for the repair, no questions asked. Arkel rocks.
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