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Grocery Woes

Old 08-05-07, 09:27 PM
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nfrank
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Grocery Woes

I have a standard avenir rack and until recently i had two sunlite grocery getter panniers. The problem I'm having is that I keep knocking the panniers off the rack. Either my heel hits them and I knock them off or I mount them as far back as they go and they bounce off. The hooks on the sunlites are absolutely horrible and don't fit on my rack well. I'm selling the sunlite panniers because I'm sick of having my groceries strewn on the road (twice on my last trip). Are there panniers that hook on better and won't give me heel strike and will fit groceries? Should I get a different set of panniers? A topeak rack and their quick release basket? A Wald basket? A new rack? Thanks for any suggestions.
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Old 08-05-07, 10:04 PM
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I use a Topeak MTX trunk bag with the fold down panniers, mounted on a Topeak Explorer rack. Got it as a combo deal on Ebay. It has decent capacity for a one person grocery shopping trip. The store I go to lets me take my bike inside, so I just put the items in the bag as I'm shopping and that way I never buy so much that it won't all fit in my bag. The panniers are about the right size for a gallon of milk plus a few cans of chili or soup, or a box of cereal and a few boxes of mac n cheese. The expandable trunk bag is nice...can fit alot of extra stuff in there. Never had a problem with the bag falling off the rack.
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Old 08-05-07, 10:07 PM
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I have that problem sometimes. It takes a little while for your pedal stroke to figure where to lift your heel and how high. I moved the bags all the way back on the rack. and put the little bungie things around my chainstays or the stays above that.

I may end up putting an egg crate on top of my rack and than the bags on the egg crate so the load is higher and away from my feet. I'll let you know how that goes.
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Old 08-05-07, 10:08 PM
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There are a couple of options I've found useful. For serious grocery hauling I picked up a huge old steel rack off craigslist. It holds a ton of stuff:



For minor trips I just use the fold-out panniers and the central box of a Topeak MTX. I've got one on my commuter and I love it. They're a little $$ but worth it if you make a lot of trips in and out.
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Old 08-05-07, 10:56 PM
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IMO racks + panniers are useless when doing large groceries (4 person family for 7 days). The only times I'll use a backpack or panniers is when I need something we forgot to buy, like getting milk, bread, etc.

I think a trailer is much more convenient.
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Old 08-05-07, 11:10 PM
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Originally Posted by nfrank View Post
I have a standard avenir rack and until recently i had two sunlite grocery getter panniers. The problem I'm having is that I keep knocking the panniers off the rack. Either my heel hits them and I knock them off or I mount them as far back as they go and they bounce off. The hooks on the sunlites are absolutely horrible and don't fit on my rack well. I'm selling the sunlite panniers because I'm sick of having my groceries strewn on the road (twice on my last trip). Are there panniers that hook on better and won't give me heel strike and will fit groceries? Should I get a different set of panniers? A topeak rack and their quick release basket? A Wald basket? A new rack? Thanks for any suggestions.
I suggest Ortlieb panniers. They're pricey, but worth every penny: durable, waterproof, go on and come off in literally one second, and fairly roomy. They also come with handy shoulder straps. They quite simply kick ass. As for your heel hitting the panniers, maybe you need a longer rack. I have an extra long rack made by Jandd, and I'm very happy with it, too.
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Old 08-06-07, 12:03 AM
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Arkel makes a nice grocery getter pannier as well. It also won't fall off.
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Old 08-06-07, 01:30 AM
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Just take more trips, sometimes I have to split a grocery order to 2-3 trips but that is usually good for a few days. I'll hit the grocery store at least once a day. I'm lucky i've got two 'no frills' grocery stores within 5 minutes of my house. If it was longer or I needed to get more stuff onto the bike i'd go for a xtracycle or trailer, even with the cost of those systems they would more than pay for themselves comapred to hauling the stuff by car, just do the math..

Cheers!
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Old 08-06-07, 05:54 AM
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Originally Posted by pluc View Post
IMO racks + panniers are useless when doing large groceries (4 person family for 7 days). The only times I'll use a backpack or panniers is when I need something we forgot to buy, like getting milk, bread, etc.

I think a trailer is much more convenient.
This has been my experience as well. While I do have folding Wald baskets, I only use them for a few items if the trailer is full. With a bike trailer, it's amazing how much you can do with your bike! Last week I biked home with two 28 pound buckets of kitty litter (they were on sale-another way the trailer lets one save money). Yesterday I brought home a case of wine with other groceries. Even when I was single I felt that NOT using a trailer for shopping was silly; having to go to the store every day or two just isn't 'my thing'.
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Old 08-06-07, 06:24 AM
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Xtracycle.

Stopped at the Whole Foods on the way back from a 20 mi. ride. Picked up a weeks worth of groceries to put on one side and a year's worth of rolled oats (50#) to put on the other side. Great thing is I didn't lug around a trailer, I just decided to go and went.
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Old 08-06-07, 08:07 AM
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I'm leaning towards the topeak rack and basket. Does anyone have experience with these?
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Old 08-06-07, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by pluc View Post
IMO racks + panniers are useless when doing large groceries (4 person family for 7 days). The only times I'll use a backpack or panniers is when I need something we forgot to buy, like getting milk, bread, etc.

I think a trailer is much more convenient.
I guess that's the nice thing about being solo right now. Even when I was buying for more people (living with dad and one brother) I tend to do smaller trips more often. I prefer to stop at the store on the way home from work and get a few meals worth of stuff and some more lasting (beverages, bread) stuff each time, but that's just me. Running that model I used to shop with my mid-sized Timbuk2 bag, now I have Wald folding baskets.
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Old 08-06-07, 11:09 AM
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Standard answer... JandD Extreme Expedition rear rack (I think that's what its called). It is designed longer than most racks to give you the heel clearance.
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Old 08-06-07, 11:18 AM
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A different rack may help the heel-strike issue. I replaced my first rack with a Jandd Expedition Rack. Not only does the rack mount a bit further back, but the deck is three inches longer too. I have to remember to load the heavy stuff in the front of the panniers or I can have trouble keeping the front wheel on the ground when climbing.

I've never had issues with my pair of Nashbar Townie Baskets coming off the rack. On bumps I have bounced stuff out of them though.
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Old 08-06-07, 07:31 PM
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I use a Sunlite Toploader bag and a big Wald basket on the front.

https://img.photobucket.com/albums/v2..._9804small.jpg

I can usually get nearly a week's worth of groceries for my brother and I with this combo, although I usually end up going every five or six days. We eat a massive amount of food.
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Old 08-07-07, 05:31 PM
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Old 08-07-07, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Juggler2 View Post
Here is what I've been using to run to the store with. Works for me!

(click to enlarge)

I'm formulating a trailer for it. It's about an 8 mile round trip to the closest grocery store, along a high traffic 4 lane road. It's 10-12 miles, flat terrain, to the next closest store, along a different route.
+1
Now that is a grocery getter. Put the big front basket on it and you are set!

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Old 08-07-07, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Juggler2 View Post
Here is what I've been using to run to the store with. Works for me!

(click to enlarge)

I'm formulating a trailer for it. It's about an 8 mile round trip to the closest grocery store, along a high traffic 4 lane road. It's 10-12 miles, flat terrain, to the next closest store, along a different route.
That is a nice rig... What kind of bike is that ?... Looking to do something like that myself..
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Old 08-07-07, 08:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Juggler2 View Post
Here is what I've been using to run to the store with. Works for me!

(click to enlarge)

I'm formulating a trailer for it. It's about an 8 mile round trip to the closest grocery store, along a high traffic 4 lane road. It's 10-12 miles, flat terrain, to the next closest store, along a different route.

Did those handlebars come with the bike, or were they swapped? I had a bike (briefly) that looked exactly like that, but with cruiser handlebars that made low-speed handling so awkward that I returned it. I think it was a Schwinn Jaguar. I got it from Target for under $200, and it would've been a great deal if not for those bars.
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Old 08-08-07, 11:09 AM
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Old 08-08-07, 11:33 AM
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Arkel sells their pannier hooks for like $20 a pair, and you can attach them to any brand of pannier. They are rock solid, though probably a little more work to get on and off than the Ortliebs. But it's a cheap way to upgrade panniers you already have.
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Old 08-08-07, 11:53 AM
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Juggler what was the base price on the Jaguar? Our local Target doesn't have any. I am looking at springing for the Schwinn Classic 3 and basketing it up I want the red and black one.

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Old 08-08-07, 12:08 PM
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Old 08-08-07, 04:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Juggler2 View Post
I can't remember exactly, it was around $100.00 though. I should add, it is a 7 speed.
Not bad, I noted the 7 speed. There are 3 reasons I am going with the Classic 3...Steel frame, internal gears and decent price. The town where I will be using it is very flat. IIRC there is a total elevation gain of about 65 feet from one end to the other over about 4 miles. Also most of the town is laid out on a grid, perfect for a cruiser type bike.

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RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
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Aluminum: barely a hundred
Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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Old 08-08-07, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
Not bad, I noted the 7 speed. There are 3 reasons I am going with the Classic 3...Steel frame, internal gears and decent price. The town where I will be using it is very flat. IIRC there is a total elevation gain of about 65 feet from one end to the other over about 4 miles. Also most of the town is laid out on a grid, perfect for a cruiser type bike.

Aaron
Where are you guys buying these ?... I have checked the Xmart web sites, Sears etc and I don't see these bikes listed anywhere... Some interesting bikes on the Schwinn site but I can;t seem to find a place to purchase them... Very frustrating.. I am interested in one like the Classic 3 you are talking about with the steel frame and internal gearing and fenders at a cheap price for a grocery getter etc.. Something I won't miss too much if it get stolen...
Thanks
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