The prosaically named Outeredge Rack Bag Medium is your typical loaf-sized piece of rack-top luggage. The price bump over cheaper options like the Axiom Charlevoix LX that I reviewed last year is justified by the inclusion of a rain cover and luggage elastic, but if you're prepared to spend more there are better bags available from Axiom, Carradice and Topeak.
This Outeredge bag is made from showerproof 600 and 420 denier polyester, so the raincover is a welcome addition. Capacity is about 6 litres all told. It's not expandable like the Carradice CarraDura Rack Bag (£38), whose top lifts up like a campervan's to go from 10 litres to 11.5. And the side pockets don't turn into mini panniers like Axiom's Paddywagon Exp 19 (which is £55, admittedly) and various Topeak bags. You can at least stash a jacket on the top using the luggage elastic.
There's a small rear pocket, big enough for a spare tube and tools, and two very slim side pockets, only really big enough for things like energy bars and gels. Inside there's one main compartment, with a padded based, and a mesh pocket under the lid. That's handy for items you don't want banging around in the bag, such as a banana or a mobile phone. The rear pocket has a loop for an LED light, and there are reflective details on the sides and back. A removable shoulder strap is included.
Like lots of other rack bags, this one attaches with a velcro strap at each corner. It's simple and works well, though it's not a bag you want to be taking on and off too often, when making multiple stops around town, for example. Removal is quick. Reattaching the bag isn't as easy as sliding a more expensive Topeak bag onto a Topeak QuickTrack rack, or sticking an Altura bag on its velcro 'landing strip'. You have to feed the straps carefully through the rack rails, ideally doing both sides at the same time so that the bag is centred on the rack.
The rack itself needs to be reasonably wide; I used one 12cm across. The base of the bag is about 16cm wide, so there's some overhang. The bigger the difference between bag width and rack width, the less velcro you'll have in contact. While I didn't have any problems with the bag coming loose, I'd have liked longer straps for more security.
It's a decent enough bag for the money. For only £4 more, however, I reckon the Carradice Carradura Rack Bag represents a better buy. And once you spend about £40 up, there are loads to choose from, some of them waterproof.
Simple day bag with the essential features and a sensible price
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Make and model: Outeredge Rack Bag Medium
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?
They say: In our ever changing world a secure and functional multi-purpose bag is a must. Day commuting,short trips or a dash across town are all covered with the IMPULSE leisure bag range.
I say: it's not ideal for dashing around town, due to Velcro strap faffage.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Material: 600D/420D poly
Dimensions: 360 x 130 x 165mm (external)
Fitting: Velcro quick mounting
Compartments: 1 main compartment, 2 side and 1 rear pocket, with foam padding
I wanted longer straps, but it stayed on okay.
Not heavy in itself, but you need to factor in the weight of a rack for all rack bags, so they're heavier for their load than saddlebags.
The shoulder strap is fine with the loads you'll get in here.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
It does the job.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Luggage elastic on top.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? It was okay.
Would you consider buying the product? No. I've got a Carradice Super C Audax saddlebag for loads of this size.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? If their budget was £34 and they wanted a rack bag, yes.
Age: 45 Height: 1.78m Weight: 67kg
I usually ride: Ridgeback Solo World fixed wheel My best bike is: Planet X Pro Carbon Track. Or Whyte M109
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: time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,