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I've just been on holiday in France with my road bike and, inevitably, some bike outings (eg beach trip, overnight trip) necessitate a need to carry extra kit beyond the capacity of a seatpack and jersey pockets.  If I was at home I'd just whip out the hybrid/tourer (fully racked up) but on holiday it usually ends up with a rucksack being needed, which I hate.  It'd be a bit excessive taking another bike on holiday but I'm wondering whether the Apidura or Carradice bags would be useful?  I'm sure some people would rather be seen dead than adorning their road bike with these sorts of bags but I'm thinking it might provide some useful 'flexibility'.

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Stratman [149 posts] 4 months ago
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The Audax folks swear by Carradice, but I’ve no experience of them.  I have an Alpkit medium sized seat pack, which works fine on my commute, doesn’t move around, but wouldn’t take overnight stuff (they do come bigger I think).  I also have an Arkel rack bag (Tailrider) which sits on an Arkel rack (Randonneurj which hangs from the saddle rails, and so works with carbon seatposts.  This also doesn’t wobble, and probably would manage a small overnight trip.  Ghyllside in Ambleside, or Alpkit in Ambleside or Hathersage are worth a look if you’re near.

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CXR94Di2 [2315 posts] 4 months ago
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I have a carradice saddle bag, I made a custom seat bracket to mount the bag on my bike.  I bought an adjustable wide carry strap, connected to the steel hoops on the bag and just lift it from the bike and carry it over my shoulder when stopping at B&B

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jonathanfmcgarry [55 posts] 4 months ago
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Carradice bags are fabulous, just don't be tempted to buy anything too big. The camper long flap for example is cavernous. I have a long serving Nelson long flap with SQR attachment and can't fault it after upwards of 20 years service. Their super C audax saddlebag is probably your best bet as it's modern clips are easier to use than more traditional leather straps & buckles. They also do a bagman attachment, I never could get on with it so donated it my brother who thinks it wonderful. Neither the SQR or bagman methods of attaching your bag to your bike need saddle loops or braze ons. The bags are made here and will give you decades of use, carradice products are all substance rather than this week's marketing puff.

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HowardR [231 posts] 4 months ago
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I’ve got a Carradice Nelson Longflap /Bagman expedition (Quick release) support - and it’s absolutely sodding brilliant.

<Capacity of 15 – 18 litres & a weight limit of 10 Kg (on the Bagman)>

(SJS cycles are currently selling the bag for £64)

Advantages:

  •  It sits solidly in place & has suprisingly effect on handling even when getting fully loaded.
  • <For me> It sits in a ‘Goldilocks’ zone of volume – Not too big & not too small.
  • Ease of access, with two side pockets and flap closure it’s a simple task to both pack & retrieve items. The extendable flap is a very useful feature for those times you find yourself unexpectedly ‘overpacked’ (wine bottle!)
  • Constructed from a fabric that’s extremely hard wearing yet waterproof and ‘breathable’ (If water does get in it’s not going to sit in permeant pools in the way that it does with a fabric that’s completely impermeable - Such as Ortleib panniers)
  • Near instant quick release (if used with the Q/R support) – Putting thing on the bike & taking it off is only a matter of a couple of moments effort. A facet that might seem trivial but which rather adds up over time. (I find a shoulder strap comes in useful)
  • Useful ‘tie-on-points’ for waterproofs/locks e.t.c

Disadvantages:

  • Not as aerodynamic as a ‘bike packing’ type bag
  • May considered to look a tadge ‘anachronistic’ when mounted on a modern carbon fibre bike (looks ‘just right’ when mounted on a steel machine) – The other way of looking at this is that it gives an ‘interesting’ steam-punk aesthetic.

Observations:

  • On a number of occasions, as I’ve caught up with & passed people with ‘bike packing’ type saddle bags mounted, I’ve been surprised at how much the thing was waggling around. It may have been that they had a crap interpretation of the design and/or their packing may have been to blame – but it does rather put me off the pattern.
  • As the ‘Bike Packing’ bags are quite ‘tubular’ in shape they look as if they have to be quite carefully packed with ‘First in= Last out’ very much to mind.

 

Thats wot eye fink.....

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alotronic [591 posts] 4 months ago
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While I agree with just about everything above and have had a couple of carradices I have now gone over to the bike packing way; very light, fit in a second, fits all bikes, stays put. The only real disadvantage to the bikepacking way is that you can't just 'flip the lid' like you can on a carradice, you have to pack them and unpack them and pack them again. Fine if you are doing that once or twice a day put if you are just bumbling around and keeping a family happy they can be a chore. On those, very few, days I grab a carradice - for actually riding I get the bikepacking bags out.

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Shades [440 posts] 4 months ago
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jonathanfmcgarry wrote:

Carradice bags are fabulous, just don't be tempted to buy anything too big. The camper long flap for example is cavernous. I have a long serving Nelson long flap with SQR attachment and can't fault it after upwards of 20 years service. Their super C audax saddlebag is probably your best bet as it's modern clips are easier to use than more traditional leather straps & buckles. They also do a bagman attachment, I never could get on with it so donated it my brother who thinks it wonderful. Neither the SQR or bagman methods of attaching your bag to your bike need saddle loops or braze ons. The bags are made here and will give you decades of use, carradice products are all substance rather than this week's marketing puff.

If you're using a Carradice bag, what's the largest size you can get away with without having to worry about the bagman attachment [I have a Brooks saddle]?  My thinking is that if this is for occasional use, you'd have the added hassle of fitting/removing the attachment.  I've also noticed that the larger bags (probably) interfere with your legs so you have to use the bagman attachment.

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tomisitt [58 posts] 4 months ago
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I've used Apidura stuff (14 litre seat-pack, 9 litre bar bag) for a couple of three-week road tours, and they've been fantastic. Cant recommend them highly enough.

 

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StoopidUserName [532 posts] 4 months ago
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I used a carradice for commuting a few years back. Great though (relatively) heavy and the quick release wasn't suitable for carbon posts so got rid. Also not so aero as they can stick out a bit  1

 

I've got an 11lt? apidura now and really rate it. Doesn't have seperate pockets unlike my carradice so not as convienient to fit your bits and bobs in but still its very good, is a lot lighter and wont mark your seatpost.

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jonathanfmcgarry [55 posts] 4 months ago
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You can use all carradice's saddlebags with the loops on a Brooks saddle but the attachment bits & pieces Carradice supply do keep the bag up and away from both the rear wheel, useful if you've made an unscheduled vineyard stop, and your legs (I've never bumped against the saddlebag using either bagman or SQR). I the suppose the the largest I'd want to use if I were relying on loops would be one of the 9 litre bags, a Barley if you like the more traditional look or a super c audax.

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kevvjj [429 posts] 4 months ago
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Just did a five day 'credit card' tour from Surrey to Paris using a Topeak BackLoader Saddle Bag (10L) and a Topeak MidLoader frame bag (3L). Used my road bike. Awesome way to travel. The seat pack comes with a dry bag (not needed on this tour) and is very easy to access stuff you have packed last... the frame bag held: 2 tubes, multitool, 2 CO2 canisters, gels, energy bars, sun hat, sun cream, wallet and passport and ultralight rain jacket.

There are lots of manufacturers making these style of bags - I don't think you can go wrong with any of them.

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S1mWa1k [4 posts] 4 months ago
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Have any of you used any of these saddlebags with a carbon seatpost? I know the advice from most of manufacturers is only use alloy seatposts, but it's unclear if this is just to reduce wear marks or if it could lead to mechanical failure. If it's to reduce wear then I could use some helicopter tape to protect the seatpost.

I'm doing my first bit of bikepacking in Septmber (four days Girona to Barcelona via a roundabout route). I want to take my Canyon Ultimate CF and get some soft of saddlebag, but wondernig if I need to replace the seatpost with an alloy version for the trip.

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StoopidUserName [532 posts] 4 months ago
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S1mWa1k wrote:

Have any of you used any of these saddlebags with a carbon seatpost? I know the advice from most of manufacturers is only use alloy seatposts, but it's unclear if this is just to reduce wear marks or if it could lead to mechanical failure. If it's to reduce wear then I could use some helicopter tape to protect the seatpost.

I'm doing my first bit of bikepacking in Septmber (four days Girona to Barcelona via a roundabout route). I want to take my Canyon Ultimate CF and get some soft of saddlebag, but wondernig if I need to replace the seatpost with an alloy version for the trip.

 

The apidura will be fine - used it on my carbon venge seatpost no problems, and will use it on my ultimate sl in the near future

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S1mWa1k [4 posts] 4 months ago
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StoopidUserName wrote:
S1mWa1k wrote:

Have any of you used any of these saddlebags with a carbon seatpost? I know the advice from most of manufacturers is only use alloy seatposts, but it's unclear if this is just to reduce wear marks or if it could lead to mechanical failure. If it's to reduce wear then I could use some helicopter tape to protect the seatpost.

I'm doing my first bit of bikepacking in Septmber (four days Girona to Barcelona via a roundabout route). I want to take my Canyon Ultimate CF and get some soft of saddlebag, but wondernig if I need to replace the seatpost with an alloy version for the trip.

 

The apidura will be fine - used it on my carbon venge seatpost no problems, and will use it on my ultimate sl in the near future

 

Great, thanks, that's good know. I figured the companies are probably just covering themselves so it's good to hear from someone with hands one experience.

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matthewn5 [1259 posts] 3 months ago
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I got a £15.99 Roswheel bikepacking bag (like the Apidura pictured above) off Ebay, and it works perfectly. Stayed perfectly in place over 120 mile overnight ride last month, while heavily loaded, including lots of out-of-saddle climbs. The only thing you have to be wary of is dismounting, make sure to lift your leg high enough to clear it.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ROSWHEEL-MTB-Bicycle-Pannier-Tail-Bag-Bike-Se...

//i.ebayimg.com/images/g/Kh8AAOSwq~tZSJws/s-l1600.jpg)

Seems it's even cheaper now, and I've seen a few others on bikes since. Recommended!