Advice wanted: Pannier/backpack combination



B

beerwolf

Guest
Am in the market for a combination small backpack and pannier
setup for commuting. Am finding that the back gets uncomfortably
hot on the commute as the weather warms up.

Has anyone some experience, good or bad, with the Arkel series
of combo bags? Recommendations for any particular model, or
for some other brand? It has to be able to carry a laptop plus
change of clothes (just pants & shirt, dress code is not a problem
for me). I'd also like to know about any Sydney bike shops that
stock Arkel or similar stuff (I know Greenspeed in Melb sell Arkel).
I'm prepared to order over the web if necessary, but would prefer
to buy in Sydney so I can try packing it in the shop first.

Any advice appreciated.

--
beerwolf (remove numbers from email address)
 
J

Joel Mayes

Guest
On 2006-09-23, beerwolf <[email protected]> wrote:
> Am in the market for a combination small backpack and pannier
> setup for commuting. Am finding that the back gets uncomfortably
> hot on the commute as the weather warms up.
>
> Has anyone some experience, good or bad, with the Arkel series
> of combo bags? Recommendations for any particular model, or
> for some other brand? It has to be able to carry a laptop plus
> change of clothes (just pants & shirt, dress code is not a problem
> for me). I'd also like to know about any Sydney bike shops that
> stock Arkel or similar stuff (I know Greenspeed in Melb sell Arkel).
> I'm prepared to order over the web if necessary, but would prefer
> to buy in Sydney so I can try packing it in the shop first.
>
> Any advice appreciated.


Hi;

I don't have any experience with Arkel but I have Ortlieb panniers with
an optional harness that turns a pannier into a backpack which work
well for me. completely water proof too.

Cheers

Joel
 
Z

Zebee Johnstone

Guest
In aus.bicycle on Sat, 23 Sep 2006 10:42:51 +1000
beerwolf <[email protected]> wrote:
> for me). I'd also like to know about any Sydney bike shops that
> stock Arkel or similar stuff (I know Greenspeed in Melb sell Arkel).
> I'm prepared to order over the web if necessary, but would prefer
> to buy in Sydney so I can try packing it in the shop first.
>


Wooley's Wheels in Oxford St have a decent range of panniers.

Zebee
 
G

Gumby

Guest
Zebee Johnstone wrote:
> In aus.bicycle on Sat, 23 Sep 2006 10:42:51 +1000
> beerwolf <[email protected]> wrote:
>
>>for me). I'd also like to know about any Sydney bike shops that
>>stock Arkel or similar stuff (I know Greenspeed in Melb sell Arkel).
>> I'm prepared to order over the web if necessary, but would prefer
>>to buy in Sydney so I can try packing it in the shop first.
>>

>
>
> Wooley's Wheels in Oxford St have a decent range of panniers.
>
> Zebee

A courier bag is 'slightly cooler' than a backpack, and I think I mean
that in a body temerature sense.
Panniers rock - I use cheap deuter uni's, waterproof and have stood up
to three years of commuting, starting to wear now.
 
Z

Zebee Johnstone

Guest
In aus.bicycle on Sat, 23 Sep 2006 09:10:58 +0800
Gumby <[email protected]> wrote:
> A courier bag is 'slightly cooler' than a backpack, and I think I mean
> that in a body temerature sense.
> Panniers rock - I use cheap deuter uni's, waterproof and have stood up
> to three years of commuting, starting to wear now.


I use a set of cheap tiogas. 2 smallish panniers joined together, they
sit over the rack. Heaps of room for a full change of clothes and towel.
More than I really need.

The only hassle is that the straps that hold them down are fiddlier
than most quick release pannier mounts.

I might consider changing them for a largish single pannier which is
easier to get on and off the bike for the commute, but keep them for
the shoppping run, they easily take one person's weekly shopping
although the very large cereal box doesn't fit.


Zebee
 
S

Stuart Lamble

Guest
On 2006-09-23, Joel Mayes <[email protected]> wrote:
> I don't have any experience with Arkel but I have Ortlieb panniers with
> an optional harness that turns a pannier into a backpack which work
> well for me. completely water proof too.


Second the Ortlieb suggestion. I have the shopper bags: take them off
the pannier rack, and the strap holding the ends down in pannier mode
becomes a nifty shoulder strap. Works very nicely for me.

--
My Usenet From: address now expires after two weeks. If you email me, and
the mail bounces, try changing the bit before the "@" to "usenet".
 

alison_b

New Member
Feb 24, 2005
316
0
0
beerwolf said:
Am in the market for a combination small backpack and pannier
setup for commuting. Am finding that the back gets uncomfortably
hot on the commute as the weather warms up.

Has anyone some experience, good or bad, with the Arkel series
of combo bags? Recommendations for any particular model, or
for some other brand? It has to be able to carry a laptop plus
change of clothes (just pants & shirt, dress code is not a problem
for me). I'd also like to know about any Sydney bike shops that
stock Arkel or similar stuff (I know Greenspeed in Melb sell Arkel).
I'm prepared to order over the web if necessary, but would prefer
to buy in Sydney so I can try packing it in the shop first.

Any advice appreciated.

--
beerwolf (remove numbers from email address)
Some time back I bought a Tention set up from PBK. The two saddle-bags are joined together with a panel that goes over the rack, and across the top of this is a zip on back pack. It is enough to carry gear and clothes for a weekend or more, or a week's shop at the market, and I find the backpack a handy option.

I do really like it - it is waterproof (it also came with a bright yellow coverall), roomy, and plenty of pockets. It's a bit fiddly to get on and off the rack though - not really a problem for me as I park my bikes in the office, but I would get irritated if I had to remove it and replace it constantly. I've thought of just cable-tying them on...

ali
 
D

DaveB

Guest
alison_b wrote:
> Some time back I bought a Tention set up from PBK. The two saddle-bags
> are joined together with a panel that goes over the rack, and across the
> top of this is a zip on back pack. It is enough to carry gear and
> clothes for a weekend or more, or a week's shop at the market, and I
> find the backpack a handy option.
>
> I do really like it - it is waterproof (it also came with a bright
> yellow coverall), roomy, and plenty of pockets. It's a bit fiddly to
> get on and off the rack though - not really a problem for me as I park
> my bikes in the office, but I would get irritated if I had to remove it
> and replace it constantly. I've thought of just cable-tying them on...


Yep I got the same from PBK, one set with the backpack and one without,
for a family trip last year. Have been using them all year for commuting
and very happy with them. Some moisture gets through in heavy rain but I
use garbage bags as well on those days.

DaveB
 
B

beerwolf

Guest
"beerwolf" <[email protected]> wrote in news:12h90no4hg7vqb8
@corp.supernews.com:

> Am in the market for a combination small backpack and pannier
> setup for commuting. Am finding that the back gets uncomfortably
> hot on the commute as the weather warms up.
>
> Has anyone some experience, good or bad, with the Arkel series
> of combo bags? Recommendations for any particular model, or
> for some other brand? It has to be able to carry a laptop plus
> change of clothes (just pants & shirt, dress code is not a problem
> for me). I'd also like to know about any Sydney bike shops that
> stock Arkel or similar stuff (I know Greenspeed in Melb sell Arkel).
> I'm prepared to order over the web if necessary, but would prefer
> to buy in Sydney so I can try packing it in the shop first.
>
> Any advice appreciated.
>


Thanks to all who replied.

The Tention setup sounds good for touring, but in my case for
commuting I need easy & quick release because the bike is in
the building basement - can't leave anything valuable attached.
I'd like to have a look at them though, if a local BS has them
in stock.

Re the Ortliebs - yes they are nice, and roomy, and waterproof.
I borrowed a set this arv to haul a dozen wines back home
(OT note: Saw in the bottle shop that Boags have brewed up a new
batch of Honey Porter, so a 6-pack of that came home too :))))).
Don't like the shoulder strap though, for anything other than
hoicking the bags into the supermarket and so on. If possible
I want something that is very comfortable just as a day pack,
something I can take on a day trip down a fire trail and then
wear happily if I have to leave the bike and bushbash for
some distance.

Will check out Wooly's and other bike shops in comming days.

--
beerwolf
(To reply by email, remove numbers from my address)
 
A

AndrewJ

Guest
I've got a Topeak rack that I don't use any more. I think its closest
to:

http://www.topeak.com/2006/products/racks/rxbeamrack.php

Now that I have dedicated racks I don't have a use for this. It sounds
suitable for what you need to do, as you could take it off if you
needed to.

This rack carried all my stuff when I rode from Brisbane to Cairns. It
is so tough the bike frame broke before the rack :)


beerwolf wrote:
> "beerwolf" <[email protected]> wrote in news:12h90no4hg7vqb8
> @corp.supernews.com:
>
> > Am in the market for a combination small backpack and pannier
> > setup for commuting. Am finding that the back gets uncomfortably
> > hot on the commute as the weather warms up.
> >
> > Has anyone some experience, good or bad, with the Arkel series
> > of combo bags? Recommendations for any particular model, or
> > for some other brand? It has to be able to carry a laptop plus
> > change of clothes (just pants & shirt, dress code is not a problem
> > for me). I'd also like to know about any Sydney bike shops that
> > stock Arkel or similar stuff (I know Greenspeed in Melb sell Arkel).
> > I'm prepared to order over the web if necessary, but would prefer
> > to buy in Sydney so I can try packing it in the shop first.
> >
> > Any advice appreciated.
> >

>
> Thanks to all who replied.
>
> The Tention setup sounds good for touring, but in my case for
> commuting I need easy & quick release because the bike is in
> the building basement - can't leave anything valuable attached.
> I'd like to have a look at them though, if a local BS has them
> in stock.
>
> Re the Ortliebs - yes they are nice, and roomy, and waterproof.
> I borrowed a set this arv to haul a dozen wines back home
> (OT note: Saw in the bottle shop that Boags have brewed up a new
> batch of Honey Porter, so a 6-pack of that came home too :))))).
> Don't like the shoulder strap though, for anything other than
> hoicking the bags into the supermarket and so on. If possible
> I want something that is very comfortable just as a day pack,
> something I can take on a day trip down a fire trail and then
> wear happily if I have to leave the bike and bushbash for
> some distance.
>
> Will check out Wooly's and other bike shops in comming days.
>
> --
> beerwolf
> (To reply by email, remove numbers from my address)
 
J

Joel Mayes

Guest
On 2006-09-23, beerwolf <[email protected]> wrote:
> "beerwolf" <[email protected]> wrote in news:12h90no4hg7vqb8
> @corp.supernews.com:
>
>> Am in the market for a combination small backpack and pannier
>> setup for commuting. Am finding that the back gets uncomfortably
>> hot on the commute as the weather warms up.


<SNIP>

> Re the Ortliebs - yes they are nice, and roomy, and waterproof.
> I borrowed a set this arv to haul a dozen wines back home
> (OT note: Saw in the bottle shop that Boags have brewed up a new
> batch of Honey Porter, so a 6-pack of that came home too :))))).
> Don't like the shoulder strap though, for anything other than
> hoicking the bags into the supermarket and so on. If possible
> I want something that is very comfortable just as a day pack,


<SNIP>

You can get an addon for Ortliebs that turn them into a day pack, it works
very well and from memory is pretty cheap too.

Cheers

J
 
J

just us

Guest
Andrew - eeks... I am going to do a long ride next year (on my new bike
which I am yet to buy!) Last thing I need is a broken frame. Was it steel or
alloy? What sort of bike did you have?
Kathy.
 
P

Peter Signorini

Guest
"beerwolf" wrote:
>
> Re the Ortliebs - yes they are nice, and roomy, and waterproof.
> I borrowed a set this arv to haul a dozen wines back home
> (OT note: Saw in the bottle shop that Boags have brewed up a new
> batch of Honey Porter, so a 6-pack of that came home too :))))).


Yes they're great for carrying liquid refreshments. In summer you can keep
the 6-pack cool by just stufing them into the ice inside the Ortlieb bag.
Great for that ride to a BBQ.

> Don't like the shoulder strap though, for anything other than
> hoicking the bags into the supermarket and so on.


Do you really need the backpack for commuting, or would some panniers be
better for load carrying and to avoid that sweaty back scenario in summer?

> If possible
> I want something that is very comfortable just as a day pack,
> something I can take on a day trip down a fire trail and then
> wear happily if I have to leave the bike and bushbash for
> some distance.


Best to simply use a good daypack for this sort of riding. One fitted with a
waterbag drinking system is best.

That's what I do. You'll find it much more comfortable than any of the
pannier conversion options about. Most of these things don't sell too well,
for that reason.

Commuting - pannier
MTB trail rides - backpack

Horses for courses

--
Cheers
Peter

~~~ ~ [email protected]
~~ ~ _- \,
~~ (*)/ (*)
 
B

beerwolf

Guest
Peter Signorini wrote:

snippage

> Do you really need the backpack for commuting, or would some panniers
> be better for load carrying and to avoid that sweaty back scenario in
> summer?
>
>> If possible
>> I want something that is very comfortable just as a day pack,
>> something I can take on a day trip down a fire trail and then
>> wear happily if I have to leave the bike and bushbash for
>> some distance.

>
> Best to simply use a good daypack for this sort of riding. One fitted
> with a waterbag drinking system is best.
>
> That's what I do. You'll find it much more comfortable than any of the
> pannier conversion options about. Most of these things don't sell too
> well, for that reason.
>
> Commuting - pannier
> MTB trail rides - backpack
>
> Horses for courses


I will probably get a set of Ortliebs - enjoyed using them yesterday.
I'll probably also invest in the backpack conversion harness, if it
isn't too pricey. But, good as they are, they seemed a bit on the
large side for my commuting purposes. So I'll still be on the lookout
for something smaller just for that.
As for trail rides - a sweaty back is a sweaty back, no matter where
I'm riding. All my trail riding so far has been with backpacks - even
weekend rides with a 50 litre pack. And I think there has to be a
better way.

--
beerwolf
(To reply by email, remove numbers from my address)
 
P

Peter Signorini

Guest
"beerwolf" wrote:

> As for trail rides - a sweaty back is a sweaty back, no matter where
> I'm riding.


To minimise the sweaty back, get hold of a Vaude or Deuter backpack, with
their Aeroflex (or other smart name) back. An arched steel frame and mesh
panel against your back, to allow plenty of room for air circulation. I have
one and only get a sweaty back on the hottest days in summer.

> All my trail riding so far has been with backpacks - even
> weekend rides with a 50 litre pack. And I think there has to be a
> better way.


By trail riding I'm referring to narrow overgrown vehicle tracks and
singletrack. Most of my riding on this is only for single day rides. For
multi-day rides you will find that panniers will present problems on this
type of ride. Difficulties in getting over obstacles, up/down steep slopes,
crossing sharp gullies, crossing fences or stiles will make your weekend a
horror trip. Panniers will clip trees and throw you off. The other option
is a BOB trailer, however even these will be hard work on technical
singletrack.

Personally I reserve trail riding for day trips, and tour with panniers for
multi-day back country trips eg. across the High Plains, Dargo, Cascades
Trail (Thredbo to Snowy River), next weekend in the Grampians. The only
multi-day trail ride I've done (twice) was Ballarat to Castlemaine on the
Great Dividing Trail, a greta trip, easily done using accommodation in
cabins/YHA at Daylesford.

--
Cheers
Peter

~~~ ~ [email protected]
~~ ~ _- \,
~~ (*)/ (*)
 
R

Resound

Guest
"> By trail riding I'm referring to narrow overgrown vehicle tracks and
> singletrack. Most of my riding on this is only for single day rides. For
> multi-day rides you will find that panniers will present problems on this
> type of ride. Difficulties in getting over obstacles, up/down steep
> slopes, crossing sharp gullies, crossing fences or stiles will make your
> weekend a horror trip. Panniers will clip trees and throw you off. The
> other option is a BOB trailer, however even these will be hard work on
> technical singletrack.
>

Not that I've done it but in that situation I'd be tempted to use a backpack
but occy-strap it to the rack. That way it doesn't stick out much to the
side but isn't covering your whole back and making you overheat. If you get
to a section where the side clearance low down really is that crucial then
wear it as a backpack for that section and then stick it back on the rack
afterwards.
 
P

Peter Signorini

Guest
"Resound" wrote:

> Not that I've done it but in that situation I'd be tempted to use a
> backpack but occy-strap it to the rack. That way it doesn't stick out much
> to the side but isn't covering your whole back and making you overheat. If
> you get to a section where the side clearance low down really is that
> crucial then wear it as a backpack for that section and then stick it back
> on the rack afterwards.


Aaargh! Brings back memories. That sort of load carrying was how I began my
cycletouring, back in the 70s. First the backpack with 20kgs of gear (ouch,
back strain) then the gear loaded in a bag on top of the rack (hello
pendulum!) Neither was at all satisfactory as a method to carry gear, *on
good roads*. On MTB trails they would be even more horrific. There is a
reason so many cyclists use panniers (preferably front and rear) - they
work. Bike is well balanced, stable and easily controllable. You can even
quite easily get out of the saddle for steep climbs, and on fast descents it
is 'rock-solid' stable.

But for narrow singletrack? Hmmm. I reckon, save it for day rides.

--
Cheers
Peter

~~~ ~ [email protected]
~~ ~ _- \,
~~ (*)/ (*)
 
B

beerwolf

Guest
Peter Signorini wrote:

> "Resound" wrote:
>
>> Not that I've done it but in that situation I'd be tempted to use a
>> backpack but occy-strap it to the rack. That way it doesn't stick out
>> much to the side but isn't covering your whole back and making you
>> overheat. If you get to a section where the side clearance low down
>> really is that crucial then wear it as a backpack for that section
>> and then stick it back on the rack afterwards.

>
> Aaargh! Brings back memories. That sort of load carrying was how I
> began my cycletouring, back in the 70s. First the backpack with 20kgs
> of gear (ouch, back strain) then the gear loaded in a bag on top of
> the rack (hello pendulum!) Neither was at all satisfactory as a method
> to carry gear, *on good roads*. On MTB trails they would be even more
> horrific. There is a reason so many cyclists use panniers (preferably
> front and rear) - they work. Bike is well balanced, stable and easily
> controllable. You can even quite easily get out of the saddle for
> steep climbs, and on fast descents it is 'rock-solid' stable.
>
> But for narrow singletrack? Hmmm. I reckon, save it for day rides.


Yes, I have tried securing a largish backpack to the top of
a rear rack. Occy straps are no good - you can't get them tight
enough to prevent the load moving around while in motion. The only
way to get it tight enough is to use tie-down straps or truckies'
hitches - and risk breaking stuff inside the pack. In the end I
just opted to put it on the place it was designed for.

I have today bought a set of small Ortliebs.

--
beerwolf
(To reply by email, remove numbers from my address)