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Verdict: 
Well-designed and well-made bag for commuting with a suit, and plenty more besides.
Weight: 
2,100g
Contact: 
Henty Wingman suit bag
8 10

The Henty Wingman is a clever bag that allows you to carry a suit and various other items to work when you commute by bike.

The Wingman is made from a heavy duty tarpaulin fabric, a lot like those used for messenger bags. Think of it as a bit like a standard suit bag that you use to keep a suit clean and safe in a wardrobe, but one that you can roll up and carry on your back when you cycle. Getting the idea?

You put your suit and shirt on to the hanger, zip the Wingman closed, then roll it up. A large Velcro closure and two ultra-sturdy straps (they're as wide as car seat belts) keep everything in place. The hanger stops the bag collapsing widthways, and two flexy plastic ribs restrict the diameter when you roll it, preventing your suit from simply folding up, so when you get to the end of your commute your clothing isn't covered in creases.

You carry the Wingman via a padded shoulder strap '' again, like a messenger bag '' with another strap that goes from your chest down to the middle of the bag to add stability.

There's a lot more going on here than that, though. You get a padded mesh panel where the bag contacts your back; a loop for adding a blinky rear light; and some reflective piping to improve your visibility.

Then there's an external pocket with a removable organiser sleeve inside, with slots for phone, pens, business cards, and a padded compartment for a 13in computer or a tablet. This pocket is big enough for a larger laptop. I got a 15in Macbook in there very easily, but not inside the padded compartment.

On top of all that, you get another removable 'gym bag' which is a zipped cylindrical bag that you can use to stash anything else you need to take to work: shoes, a towel, or whatever. You can clip this into place in the middle of your Wingman roll, or even use it on its own '' it comes with a skinny strap.

What else? Oh yeah, the final feature is a rain cover that's zipped away in a little compartment. It's made from a waterproof fabric with taped seams and a Velcro closure. It takes seconds to put in place, and it comes with a little slot so you can still fit the stability strap, along with a reflective logo.

Phew! That's a lot of features, but the real question is: how well does it perform? It's very good. I've used this with a few different sets of clothes inside and they've always come out perfectly presentable. Shirts don't look quite like they've just come off the ironing board, but they're not far off. I've had no problems at all on that score.

The Wingman does allow you to carry a suit, plus a tablet or laptop, plus shoes, all in one go. The only issue there is that you've got quite a bit of weight going mostly onto one shoulder. The strap is wide and padded to spread the load but you probably wouldn't want to ride far with all that lot inside. It can be done, though.

Stability isn't usually an issue. Most of the time the Wingman feels absolutely fine unless you're riding along out of the saddle with a really heavy load, in which case you have to be a bit more controlled, but you could say that about pretty much any bag that you carry on your back.

The waterproof cover works although I struggled to get the Velcro closure to fit without any gaps over bulky loads. I think the two ends of the cover should have more of an overlap to avoid this. That said, you'd have to be out in the rain for a long time before the rain got in there and then soaked through the Wingman bag itself and into your clothing. I've done a few wet rides using the Wingman and that certainly hasn't happened.

As for the price, well, £120 would be expensive if this was simply a suit bag with a strap added, but that's not what you're getting here. This is a well thought-out and well-executed bag that's robust enough that it should last ages. Plus, as well as using it on the bike, you can use it if you walk, take public transport, or fly. All in all, it's a really neat design.

The Wingman measures 56 x 101cm when unrolled, and 56 x 22 x 25cm when rolled.

Verdict

Well-designed and well-made bag for commuting with a suit, and plenty more besides.

road.cc test report

Make and model: Henty Wingman Bag

Size tested: Standard size

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?

It's a bag for carrying your suit plus a bunch of other stuff to the work when you're travelling by bike.

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10
Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:
 
8/10
Rate the product for value:
 
8/10

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

It does the job really well.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

It's a clever design and it works.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The Velcro closure on the rain cover didn't fill me with confidence but my kit didn't get wet inside, and that's all that matters, really.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.

Would you consider buying the product? Yes, it provides a good solution.

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 43  Height: 190cm  Weight: 75kg

I usually ride:   My best bike is:

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding,

 

Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over the past 20 years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for seven years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a youthful 45-year-old Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.

1 comments

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Colin Peyresourde [1637 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

Looks like a pretty good design. Having it in leather, or water repellent cotton could give it a nice design look too.

This should be in with urban cyclists Christmas list!