Deuter's small bike bag is a no-nonsense saddle bag that attaches securely with a single looped velcro strap to the saddle rails. It uses strong materials in the important places and light ones in the others.
The bike bag is wider than it is tall; bigger tubes fit horizontally rather than vertically. At first sight you might think it would protrude beyond the saddle and rub your thighs, but when it was mounted on the bike I never noticed it. It isn't - and doesn't need to be - attached to the seatpost. On my bike, it didn't even touch the seatpost, which means there are no worries about marking or damaging expensive carbon numbers. Depending on your saddle fore-aft adjustment, a bit of helitape might be a sensible precaution.
It's claimed size is 0.5 liter. Here's what goes in it easily: a fat (622/28-47) touring type tube; a Tip Top TT04 puncture repair kit, little black plastic box 'n' all; two Soma steel core tyre levers; and a Lezyne CRV12 smallish multi tool. With a bit off fiddling it would take a gel or a bar at a pinch. Take a smaller, lighter racing tube and you can stick a CO2 inflator in.
The Deuter bike bag is constructed from ripstop nylon shell with a plastic insert running from the top around the front to the bottom. The bag's outer is rubberized around the plastic insert, and just uses the ripstop nylon material around the sides. In other words, strong and heavier material is used on the wear areas, lighter material is used where it won't compromise the durability of the saddle bag. Deuter claim the bag is easy to clean, but as I use mudguards I didn't need to find out.
In terms of weight, this brings the bag in at 70 grams - not quite as light as claimed, but certainly no heavyweight.
The zip runs horizontally along the top of the back half of the saddle bag. The lightweight material on the sides and back, allow it to open plenty to organise everything inside; though if you need to take big items (like a tube) out, it's much easier if you take it off the saddle.
The Deuter bike bag has a rear light attachment loop and has bits of reflective print on the back and sides. It also comes in a XS version if you only need to take take fewer/smaller items.
No-nonsense saddle bag that's big enough for the essentials and attaches securely
road.cc test report
Make and model: Deuter Bike Bag S
Size tested: n/a
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
An extra small, light saddle bag for minimalist cyclists. The pouch holds spare tube, keys and change and can be compressed even smaller if required. Velcro straps make mounting on the saddle frame very quick and secure. Washable material on the spray zones and reflective prints for good visibility.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Deuter-Microrip-Nylon: 210 den Nylon fabric with strong ripstop threads and PU coating. This fine, lightweight and yet abrasion resistant nylon is optimal for lightweight backpack construction.
Weight: 50 g
Size: 8 x 9 x 14 (H x W x D) cm
Volume: 0.5 l
A rubberised material with a plastic insert is used for the wear areas: top, seatpost end and bottom. The lightweight microripstop nylon material is used for the sides where the bag doesn't touch anything.
No signs of early wear have appeared yet; the smart combination of materials should do the job.
At 70 grams (20 grams heavier than claimed), it's towards the lighter end of saddle bags. Importantly, stronger (and therefore heavier) materials have been used where needed. This could well be the perfect compromise.
It's a couple of quid cheaper than my go-to Topeak Aero Wedge Small on list price, but can be found for around the same price online.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
It took the tools, attached securely and didn't get in the way.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
It attaches securely without touching the seat post.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
It needs to be taken off the saddle to take bigger items out.
Did you enjoy using the product? Enjoy is a strong word for a saddle bag; it did the job.
Would you consider buying the product? I would consider it if I had a need for another saddle bag.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Possibly, depends on what they are looking for.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
If you're looking for a saddle bag that takes the essentials and is lightweight without compromising durability, the Deuter bike bag S is worthy of your shortlist.
About the tester
Age: 36 Height: 1.78m Weight: 76kg
I usually ride: All of them! My best bike is: Cannondale CAAD10
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, mtb,