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The Aeroe Quick Mount Pod is very tough, very useful and mounts in a variety of ways. It only works with Aeroe's Spider Rear Rack, and there's a weight penalty for the convenience, but if these are acceptable tradeoffs it's a cracking solution for keeping your stuff safe and dry in difficult conditions.
The Aeroe Quick Mount Pod can only fit on Aeroe's own Spider Rear Rack, but clamps to the Spider on either side or the top, meaning you can carry one, two or three Pods. This gives you 11, 22 or 33 litres of space, and up to 16kg of load – the recommended limit of the rack. Each Pod is rated for 7kg.
The Pod has a unique keyed mount, allowing it to be very quickly fitted or removed with the pull of a strap and judicious alignment. A real party trick is the ability to near-instantly pivot a top-mounted Pod through 90 degrees to facilitate use of a dropper post if things get gnarly, should you need the extra clearance.
This quick-release mechanism also allows for fine-tuning of the pod angle when mounted on the side, for either heel clearance or aerodynamics. The adjustment allows for 15 different positions – just pull the tab out and pivot. There are three positions where the Pod can be lifted free from the mount, and it becomes second nature very quickly.
The pod's base is a super-strong glass-reinforced nylon, while the top is a tough TPU fabric – the same sort of stuff Aeroe makes heavy-duty drybags from. There's a waterproof two-way zip around the edge, meaning you can open it from either end. Useful.
The zip's quite stiff and is definitely a two-handed operation, but hey – it's waterproof. Yes you need two hands to operate it, but it's an acceptable tradeoff for strength and protection.
Inside there are two cinch straps with buckles, to hold down larger loads. It's the sort of space crying out for several smaller, lightweight drybags or storage pods. I used drybags for clothes and compressible stuff, and the Pod for packaged cooking gear, food, a jacket and so on. I can also confirm the Quick Mount Pod holds two bottles of Chilean Merlot side by side without rattling.
There's no facility to attach a shoulder strap, and the tricky zip makes quick, single-handed access a non-starter, so it's not quite as handy in urban settings as a traditional pannier – but that's not really what it's for.
What it's clearly built for, and what it excels at, is very rough terrain. Aeroe has got the balance of robustness, waterproofness and size just right, in my opinion. 11 litres holds quite a lot of gear, and is ideal for cooksets, toiletries, electronics, that sort of thing.
The Quick Mount Pod definitely stands out on the trail as a tidy, modular solution, garnering a lot of enquiries as to what they were and 'where can I get some?' If you are cycle touring, or even just on a long day trip, the Pod's robust nature could come in very useful.
Also, being able to instantly remove 33L / 16kg of luggage to make your bike lighter is not to be sneezed at: I recall a happy half hour dismantling then reassembling the luggage on my bikepacking rig, just to clamber over an eight-foot locked deer gate in the pouring rain. Had I been using the Aeroe system the job would have been considerably easier.
Likewise having to push the bike up a set of steep train station stairs - being able to remove and portage the luggage separate to the bike will be a game-changer for some folks. (Incidentally, Aeroe has plans for more commuter-focused products next year, using the same universal mount.)
The same thinking can be applied to deep stream crossings, or getting around any significant obstacle, like a fallen tree.
Yes, traditional panniers have done quick-release for years – but traditional panniers are also pants when it comes to riding off-road, being low to the ground therefore highly likely to catch on rocks or plants, not at all aero, and requiring racks almost always incompatible with suspension frames or those lacking sturdy rack bosses.
The only luggage I can think of coming close to the Aeroe Quick Mount Pod / Spider Rear Rack combo is the venerable Topeak MTX Trunkbag, paired with the Topeak Tetrarack R2 or its mountain bike equivalent for shallower seatstays, the M2. The R2 combo is good for 9kg total and 12L of luggage, and will set you back £160.
The Pod worked out at £85 at the time of writing (it's €98.95), while the Spider Rear Rack was around £95 (€109.95), putting the combo at £180.
I gave the Topeak gear four stars each, but the Aeroe kit is in another league in terms of toughness, waterproofing and ease of fitting. If you aren't going gnar then Topeak is a great option, but for serious off-roading and ease of use, I'd punt for the Aeroe kit every time. Just be prepared to answer questions from folks trailside, because you'll attract all sorts.
Innovative, very tough and waterproof pannier with an excellent mounting system
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Aeroe Quick Mount Pod
Size tested: 11 litres
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?
Aeroe says: "When the road gets tough (literally), you'll need the 11L Quick Mount Pod. For sturdy storage and solid protection for your gear, this waterproof, hard-shell pod is made from high quality nylon and weighs only 718 grams. Fit directly to the top or side of the Spider Rear Rack via the Uni-mount attachment (included)."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Weight: 739g (1.6lbs) (includes uni mount) - MEASURED: 910g
Load capacity: 7kgs recommended (15lbs)
Materials: Glass reinforced nylon backing, heavy duty TPU HF nylon fully welded. Fully waterproof.
Really tough, well-built and high quality.
Works really well; I only wish the zip was easier to use.
Everything about the pod oozes toughness.
It's not that light, but to be lighter would compromise other benefits.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Aside from the sticky zip, it's great. Goes on and off easily, can be spun if needed, stays 100% solid and quiet.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The quick release.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The zip - I understand it's stiff because it's waterproof, I just wish it were easier to open and close.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Pretty well, actually. The Topeak Tetrarack + Trunkbag combo is only £30 more, for about the same capacity, but isn't as robust or waterproof.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
I can only criticise the Pod for its weight and stiff (though waterproof) zip. I think the price is fair for what it does.
About the tester
I usually ride: Sonder Camino Gravelaxe My best bike is: Nah bro that's it
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, general fitness riding, mtb, G-R-A-V-E-L