To transport your belongings by bike efficiently, it is vital to choose the perfect saddlebags that best suit your needs, such as storage capacity, type of attachment, or uses. Below, we summarize the saddlebag attaching method.
1. The most common method is to use straps to secure the saddle rails and seat-posts: Even if the saddle rails and seat-posts have a unique shape, we can fix them as long as the straps pass through.
2. Another typical fixing method is the attachment type: It is a method of fixing a special attachment to the saddle rail and fitting the bag there. The bag can be attached and detached with a single touch.
3. However, some saddle rails may not have an attachment: The attachment may be too far behind to reach the straps that secure it to the seat post.
4. Since you will choose a so-called saddle, it is necessary to match the actual item in advance: There is a minor risk of purchasing it online.
In this advice sheet, you can choose bicycle bags according to the desired use. In the third section, you will find a description of the bicycle pannier profiles. The last section answers some common questions about bicycle panniers.
Table of Contents
How to Attach Saddle Bag to Bike?
1. The saddlebag is practical for storing small equipment during the day: You can quickly access your things.
2. The saddlebag with the shoulder strap is ideal: It is handy if you leave the bike unattended for a few minutes.
3. For cycle tourists, the handlebar bag carries the equipment for a great bike ride: It includes a camera, maps, and water bottles.
4. For the urban rider, a saddlebag allows for more oversight of things.
To be well maintained on the bike, we offer saddlebags with their mounting bracket. Second support can be convenient to install a bag on two bikes. In addition, some models have a transparent plastic pocket to insert a road map or a GPS, or a mobile phone.
You can follow the instructions of this YouTube video for the most accurate method.
What You Want to Keep in Your Saddle Bag
Sport-type bicycles use less versatile parts, so it may not always be possible to repair or replace parts immediately. Also, unlike the cruiser that is often used in the living area, the range of activities is wide. So, it may be difficult to imagine where the trouble will occur.
Therefore, it is necessary to solve some troubles by yourself. But the one that you want to deal with on your own is a flat tire. There are various reasons, but the most common problem should be a flat tire.
And since most bicycle punctures have holes in the tube, you should carry a spare tube or a patch that closes the hole in the tube. Even if you cannot replace or repair it on your own, it is vital to carry the parts with you.
It must be a saddle bag that holds these parts. And it is even more necessary if you dislike carrying a cool tactical backpack or wear something on your body. And if you put only these parts in, they will not be attached and detached frequently. So, the method of fixing it with a strap is better.
Disadvantages of Running with Luggage on a Bicycle
In the previous section, we mentioned how to carry luggage when riding a bicycle. But you may think that you do not need a saddlebag if you carry a backpack on your back. Many people do so, but bicycles have more exercise than you can imagine, so you sweat a lot.
If you continue pedaling for 20 or 30 minutes not only in the summer but also in the winter, you will get a sweat on your back. In such a state, if you carry a backpack on your back, your back will become soaked with sweat.
It is unpleasant for your clothes to get wet with sweat. In winter, it can cause you to catch a cold due to cold sweat. So, saddlebags are a very effective means.
Considering that you need to carry a backpack on your back, the saddlebag also needs to be the right size. Also, if you put valuables in it, you will carry the bag with you when you leave the bicycle. So, the one-touch fixing method is more convenient.
Select the Saddle Bag Fixing Method
In the previous section, we introduced how to fix the saddle bag for your bike seats. But which one is better depends on the luggage you put in and how you ride? If they are from the same manufacturer, the price of the strap type is about 10 to 20% cheaper.
The only luggage you can put inside is tubes and tools. So, in the extreme, we have little regrets even if it is stolen. The strap type is perfect. As mentioned above, it is versatile regardless of the shape of the saddle, so it is economically helpful.
If you want to carry valuables such as smartphones and wallets as a normal bag at your destination, it will be an attachment type. Sometimes, you may have a restroom break an hour after you stop at a convenience store, or you may stop at a restaurant for a meal an hour later. Those who prefer such laid-back cycling should and detach frequently.
Saddle Bag Mounting
So-called double panniers, such as triple panniers, can only find their place on the rear wheel of the bike if a luggage rack is available here. It means that these most popular and well-known bicycle bags are not suitable for racing bikes or mountain bikes. For trekking and city bikes, these bags are an ideal solution, especially since the attachment is quick and easy. So, we can place these bike bags over the luggage rack. We can also attach some models to the tubes of the luggage rack with a Velcro strap.
The so-called lowrider is there to fix the front panniers on the bike. This bag is suitable for longer bike tours because you can stow various pieces of luggage on both the rear and the front wheel. Especially in this way, you distribute the weight better on the bike. The lowrider also has an extra stand so that you can still park your bike securely.
So, you can attach the lowrider to your bike, the fork must have a thread on each side halfway up. The assembly turns out to be child’s play here. You can attach the bracket to the front fork with the supplied screws.
Recommended Saddle Bag
- Classic saddlebag on saddle rail: you can attach the saddlebag to the saddle rails through a specific fixing by clips. This system specific to each bag is both quick and easy to use.
- Classic saddlebag on a seat post: a seat post mount has no more advantages or disadvantages than a rail mount. The choice depends mainly on the compatibility of the binding on the bike.
- Minimalist saddle bag: it is the bag that will allow you to insert one spare inner tube and a tire iron for example. As its name suggests, its fixation is very basic (with Velcros fasteners for example).
- Expandable saddle bag: it stands out from other bicycle bags by its oval shape and expandable zippered compartments. You can slip in a rain jacket, food supplements, and anti-puncture equipment.
Topeak is a staple manufacturer of saddlebags. And this series is by far the most popular. There are four sizes, micro, S, M, and L, two fixing methods, the strap type, and the attachment type. We will briefly summarize the capacity of the luggage that can be put inside.
- Micro (0.4L): Tube patch, tire lever, portable tool, and mini wire lock
- S size (0.66L): Micro and a simple inflator (with cylinder), handkerchief, and pocket tissue
- From M size: you can expand the size of the bag by opening and closing the zipper.
- M size (0.98L to 1.31L): S size, another tube, foldable rain gear, and smartphone
- L size (1.48L to 1.97L): M size, U-shaped lock, towel, and wallet
Large Cargo Capacity
Hiking and cycling require a much larger load. If you equip yourself with front, rear, and handlebars bags, you can on average carry up to 70 liters of equipment.
- The front panniers: we must mount them lower than the rear panniers, to improve the stability of the bike.
- The rear saddlebags: they are bigger, to fit bulky material but not too heavy.
- The triple bag: it comprises two side compartments and an upper part that is attached to the rear luggage rack tray. We can transform this third element into a backpack depending on the model.
When cycling touring, having waterproof saddlebags is crucial to protect your belongings. The most resistant saddlebags are those in polyester coated with polyurethane or PVC (like a truck tarpaulin). Saddlebags made of softer fabrics such as corduroy or nylon are just as waterproof and more practical to use because they are less rigid than PVC saddlebags.