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Carradice Saddlebags

snipsnapsnipsnap Posts: 259
edited April 2015 in Commuting general
Anyone any experience with them?

I'm looking to replace my backpack use (for commuting duties) with one of these (favouring the 15litre Nelson) that I could clip into my Brooks Swift on my Croix De Fer.

I tried a pannier rack/bag combo last week and although it reduced the back pain (suffered due to back-pack) I didn't like how it made the bike feel - very sluggish, and a real struggle on the hills that form part of my route. Whilst i appreciate that it's good training, I commute pretty light and don't need the additional capacity that panniers provide if honest.

So I've started looking at the Carradice Saddlebags; made near where I live in Lancashire, look great and place the centre of gravity a bit higher up than panniers so theoritcally will not affect the feel of the bike as detrimentally.

Any issues I should be aware of before pressing the buy button - leg strike or other problems I may have not considered?

Thanks

Posts

  • neal1984neal1984 Posts: 240
    I've got the Nelson bag and when I used it i found it great. As i don't carry much stuff anymore I've gone back to a ruck sack but still have the Carradice. I used it with the quick mount which was great. Buy buy buy.

    Life is like riding a bicycle: you don't fall off unless you stop pedaling.


    Scott Foil Team Issue HMX Di2
    Boardman Team Carbon LTD
  • MoodymanMoodyman Posts: 158
    I have the Super C Audax bag - black.

    Likes:

    Looks nice with a steel bike
    Can carry breakfast, lunch, some fruit and all the tools.
    More aerodynamic into a headwind vs panniers- although this is more a perception than actual.

    Dislikes:
    Not good if you have more than one bike you commute one - can't simply lift and shift. Too much faffing around with the leather straps.
    Also a faff if you have to go into your bag often- leather straps are a faff.
    It catches on the back of thighs. I got round this by using one of those red reflectors that come with new bikes and angled it to push the bag back a couple of inches.

    If you go down the saddlebag route, go with a bag that has the plastic click to get in and out. Hence why I bought an Audax bag over the Barley.
  • I use a Carradice Super C Saddlepack.
    https://www.carradice.co.uk/index.php?page_id=product&under=type&product_id=34

    Its only 8litres but it suits me as I don't cycle every night shift so I can take my clothes home to wash when in the car, but its more than big enough for lunch, pair of trousers/shirt & undies.

    Its slim, doesn't touch my legs while riding, I keep all my things in a carrier bag inside so I don't need to remove the saddlepack once at my destination.
  • I've got two, a super c audax and the monster camper longflap. I have the bagman qr support option which avoids the issue with the leather straps, I can swap bags in 10 seconds and means you don't need a saddle with loops. I use the super c for commuting and for err.. Audax! I bought the longflap for a jogle- I was approached by a elderly guy in Wells who was reminiscing about the carradice he had as a young man, he was over the moon that they still made them the same way and wasn't interested in the bike just the saddlebag!
  • snipsnapsnipsnap Posts: 259
    first commute with the nelson longflap - a great solution! very happy with it, and glad I ordered the longflap as need most of the space for my food and kit.

    Quick question - how long do the straps usually last when through brooks saddle loops? I can't see them lasting long so am thinking one of the supports is the better solutuion then I'm not constantly buying leather straps?! Is there a better option to get as there are a few available?
  • snipsnap wrote:
    first commute with the nelson longflap - a great solution! very happy with it, and glad I ordered the longflap as need most of the space for my food and kit.

    Quick question - how long do the straps usually last when through brooks saddle loops? I can't see them lasting long so am thinking one of the supports is the better solutuion then I'm not constantly buying leather straps?! Is there a better option to get as there are a few available?

    As per my post, the bagman qr is really good - it not only supports the bag and keeps it away from the back of your legs but the qr system is really good. Not easy to see on the website but basically it's a plastic moulding which fits on the bag and retained by two large cable ties around the wooden baton. The other part is a metal bracket which clamps onto the seatrails and has two sprung loaded pins (about 5mm dia) which snap into the plastic bracket. It means you can remove the bag really easily if your leaving the bike anywhere. For example I take the bag off the bike when I get home and put the bike in the garage. I can then unload it and put the next days provisions and clean clothes in the comfort of my house rather than outside! Small thing but makes life easier!
  • Godders1Godders1 Posts: 750
    I've been using a big Super C (24L I think) with a QR bagman for about 4 years, it's a great set up. The only problem I had was the wooden dowel which accommodates the cable ties for the fiting bracket snapped after going over a particualrly big pot hole. Carradice sent me a replacement dowel straight away though.
  • JackPozziJackPozzi Posts: 1,191
    Out of interest, does anyone use these with carbon seatposts with the bagman bracket? I know it's hanging from the saddle so doesn't cause any crush damage but unsure if it would cause any problems.
  • Ian.BIan.B Posts: 732
    I've been using a Nelson Longflap on a Bagman QR support for several years and I don't know why more people don't use them for commuting in place of panniers (unless you really need a lot of space) or a backpack, although I can see that not everyone likes the look. I can take a week's worth of clothes, or carry a laptop and a lever arch file, or stop off on the way home for shopping, and can keep puncture repair/tools in a side pocket.
    JackPozzi wrote:
    Out of interest, does anyone use these with carbon seatposts with the bagman bracket? I know it's hanging from the saddle so doesn't cause any crush damage but unsure if it would cause any problems.
    Yes, and never had any issues. Even a heavily laden bag won't be much compared to a rider's weight and are the forces much different to a rider sitting back on the saddle?

    I wouldn't fix it to carbon saddle rails though. It fixes to the saddle rails with a single bolt and when I first got it I had a problem with it working loose especially with a heavy load, and find you do have to fix it quite tight to overcome this, but I've never had a problem since.
  • JackPozziJackPozzi Posts: 1,191
    Ian.B wrote:
    I've been using a Nelson Longflap on a Bagman QR support for several years and I don't know why more people don't use them for commuting in place of panniers (unless you really need a lot of space) or a backpack, although I can see that not everyone likes the look. I can take a week's worth of clothes, or carry a laptop and a lever arch file, or stop off on the way home for shopping, and can keep puncture repair/tools in a side pocket.
    JackPozzi wrote:
    Out of interest, does anyone use these with carbon seatposts with the bagman bracket? I know it's hanging from the saddle so doesn't cause any crush damage but unsure if it would cause any problems.
    Yes, and never had any issues. Even a heavily laden bag won't be much compared to a rider's weight and are the forces much different to a rider sitting back on the saddle?

    I wouldn't fix it to carbon saddle rails though. It fixes to the saddle rails with a single bolt and when I first got it I had a problem with it working loose especially with a heavy load, and find you do have to fix it quite tight to overcome this, but I've never had a problem since.


    Thanks Ian, always been slightly wary that it might be stressing the carbon in a way it's not designed to be stressed, and my limited knowledge of the material is that it's very strong when used as it is designed to be but can also be quite fragile, so good to know that it hasn't caused any problems for you.

    Now just to decide which model to go for!
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