Saturday 28 January 2023

Touring gear

My new bike doesn't have mudguard mounts, so I can't attach the rack I've used in the past.

saddle handlebar top tube bags

saddle handlebar bags

There are many solutions. Some are racks that connect to a modified axle, or clamp to the frame. They also need a separate bag. It adds to the cost and weight. Another option is a setup that attaches to the seat post and saddle rails. Overall cheaper and lighter they don't hold as much and may be prone to swaying from side to side.

I went for the latter with the new bike. I only had a change of cycling clothing, something to wear off the bike and the the various cables and chargers for my electronics.

The new setup is from Restrap, it holds fourteen litres. Initial impressions are that, as you can see, it sits very close to road bike wheel. The website does say I need more space under the saddle. Hopefully it won't sag so much that it touches the tyre. One of the straps that wrap around the seat post isn't long enough, it being an aero shape. Should be okay though. No problems with the Kona.

Having the opening at one end means packing needs a little more thought. The other bag is top loading, so I can get to anything easily. With this type I have what I might need during the day packed last. At the end of the ride I remove the bag by undoing one clip. Much easier than unthreading the multiple straps from the rack. And the holder comes off quickly too; the rack needs tools. 

saddle handlebar bags

saddle handlebar top tube bags

The Kona has new handlebars. The bar bag didn't fit on the old one; the cables and hoses get in the way. The extra section on the front gave me lots of room. I also wanted them flatter so these were perfect. I'm not sure if I'll need to trim them, so for now there is a bit sticking out from the grips. It'll need a new saddle too.

The rack was used last year to Cornwall and with panniers in 2011 for Paris and along the South Downs Way in 2012. I packed way too much in those early days, although it did include a full size camera and a mini tripod.  

bikepacking setup rack
my setup for the ride to Cornwall in 2022

Ride to Paris gear
panniers for Paris in 2011, it looked the same for 2012 except for much more mud

I'll get out for a test ride when the roads are more conducive to outdoor riding. Hopefully that won't be too long.