"Best" panniers for cycle camping

Specifically for cycle touring subjects & questions
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RickH
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby RickH » 26 Jul 2018, 1:58pm

horizon wrote:I like the Ortlieb colours - it's that rubbery shiny material . . . :shock:

The plus versions are material (cordura?) on the outside. :)

JakobW
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby JakobW » 26 Jul 2018, 5:08pm

If the major issue with your existing Ortliebs is capacity and organisation, then how about just adding a bar bag? A medium-sized one should take a rain jacket, first aid kit, phone/wallet, and snacks, without being heavy enough to affect the steering.

MrsHJ
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby MrsHJ » 26 Jul 2018, 8:45pm

F70100 wrote:
MrsHJ wrote: I will shortly unleash my excel spreadsheet of panniers in this thread


I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to this... :D


Let it not be said that I don't deliver on a threat. I have subsequently colour coded it and attributed my scores to each colour to produce a total score (I mentioned I'm an accountant didn't I?!).

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ossie
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby ossie » 27 Jul 2018, 9:42pm

I've stuck withe my old Altura Arrans. They're not totally waterproof but have plenty of pockets for the med kit, sun cream ,tools etc and stuff that can remain hard wired unless you need it.

I line them with rubble-sacks (a new set every tour -about a fiver)- but organised into separate bags inside the sacks....the sleeping bag and mat goes into a dry bag - inside the rubble sack.

When its soaking wet and the panniers, the bike etc are covered in road grot etc ..open up and whisk a largely dry rubble sack into your tent or porch. Re pack your rubble sack in the tent in the morning and place into the pannier (which stays on the bike).

The pocket aspect of these panniers has probably stopped me upgrading as they are still going strong after 7 years .

Eton Rifle
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby Eton Rifle » 28 Jul 2018, 4:03pm

Tangled Metal wrote:Carradry version of Carradice might be a compromise?

I'm a fan of Ortliebs so can't help much but unlimited money it's arkel (lottery win permitting of course otherwise I can't justify £300+).


Just out of interest, I had a look at Arkel - they do look very nice - the classic bags especially but by God, are they heavy. A pair of T-42 Classics weighs 2.3kg against 1.68kg for a pair of Ortlieb Back Roller Plus.

I can understand the OP's frustration with 'bucket' designs but you kinda get used to keeping stuff you're likely to need during the day on top or in a bar bag. As others have noted, the drybag / stuff sack method of organisation works pretty well to keep things organised.

F70100
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby F70100 » 28 Jul 2018, 4:34pm

MrsHJ wrote:
F70100 wrote:
MrsHJ wrote: I will shortly unleash my excel spreadsheet of panniers in this thread


I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to this... :D


Let it not be said that I don't deliver on a threat. I have subsequently colour coded it and attributed my scores to each colour to produce a total score (I mentioned I'm an accountant didn't I?!).

Image


Nurse, the screens please...

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pjclinch
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby pjclinch » 28 Jul 2018, 6:44pm

Eton Rifle wrote:
Tangled Metal wrote:Carradry version of Carradice might be a compromise?

I'm a fan of Ortliebs so can't help much but unlimited money it's arkel (lottery win permitting of course otherwise I can't justify £300+).


Just out of interest, I had a look at Arkel - they do look very nice - the classic bags especially but by God, are they heavy. A pair of T-42 Classics weighs 2.3kg against 1.68kg for a pair of Ortlieb Back Roller Plus.

I can understand the OP's frustration with 'bucket' designs but you kinda get used to keeping stuff you're likely to need during the day on top or in a bar bag. As others have noted, the drybag / stuff sack method of organisation works pretty well to keep things organised.


Another point about a monolithic space is that the size of the whole bag is the size of the biggest thing you can put in it. If it's subdivided numerous ways that won't be true, and you tend to lose effective volume if you rely on the bag's idea of how much space is needed for different things (that is, if the pocket you put the toolkit in is 20% bigger than needed you lose that extra space, unless you put something else in which defeats the idea of separate things in separate pockets, or if it's 20% too small you have to split up or put it somewhere else).

Unlimited money wouldn't tempt me to Arkels. They've always made a point of really going to town and that's not a bad thing in itself, but overdoing something doesn't actually make it better. I imagine their super cam-lock system is more secure than the Ortlieb QL hooks under heavy machine gun fire, but in the absence of targeted ordnance I've never had my Orts fall off, and they're really easy both on and off with no need to remember to lock them.

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Often seen riding a bike around Dundee...

MrsHJ
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby MrsHJ » 28 Jul 2018, 9:21pm

One of my comments after doing some research is how appalling the marketing departments are in many cases when trying to sell stuff for quite big numbers. One photo of the outside of a bag for example in many cases (including ortlieb), vague marketing um, rubbish, about how useful they are with no actual details about stuff like pickets, zips, practical info. If you assume that ortlieb are the market leader and you want to stand apart from their known product you'd think that less popular brands would be all over the detail but it's really poor. Photos of attachment systems, inside the bag and on an actual rack shod be the bare minimum in these days when it's a long way to go and see many of them in the flesh.

My other comments after doing some research is that there's more out there than I'd realised- especially in the traditional 55l ish capacity that ortlieb have been part of a move away from. And now ortlieb have leaped back in at the other end of the scale with these 70 litre ones- interesting about those too.

Some great looking smaller brands-crosso for instance is polish and ridiculously good value (I haven't checked the quality and reviews for that one).

crazydave789
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby crazydave789 » 8 Aug 2018, 7:42pm

I tend to buy second hand because they are more cost effective, my first panniers were cannondale overlanders in 1992. still got one somewhere if I ever find it.

you can of course sew up and alter panniers to you own designs, I like fabric panniers for that reason but tarp ones can be sewn up in a similar fashion with dental floss. waterproof them inside and out which takes care of most dramas. I have fabric panniers, waterproof fabric panniers and waterproof panniers so I can float when I get pushed into a canal.

if you want to do the transam have you considered buying panniers out there? it is something I've considered as the US is considerably cheaper - even more so if you can buy off ebay and send them to a friend/contact.

big panniers are ace but as I found in the army - you tend to fill up the bag you have, the bigger the bag the more stuff you carry.

willem jongman
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby willem jongman » 13 Aug 2018, 10:45am

We have always used Ortlieb classic panniers, and have been very pleased. Bombenfest is the word for them. Some are still going strong after twenty years of daily use, even though last year I had to replace some buckles (but Ortlieb supply spare parts, even for old models). However, in recent years we have been downsizing our gear now that the kids do not normally join us anymore. So, we no longer need front panniers, and sometimes even the 40 litre rear panniers are unnessarily large - and heavy. A pair of 40 litre Classic backrollers is 1900 grams, and proportionally that is quite a lot of weight. So I bought a pair of Alture Arc 15 panniers, offering 33 litre capacity at 1050 grams. I used them this summer on a solo tour in Germany, and they were a bit tight but fine, and that included a Trangia 27 stove and some food. The tent went on top of the rack, the meth went in a bottle under the downstube, and I also had a bar bag for convenience, but that was all. Since it was so hot, I usually had a 0.75 litre water bag in the panniers as well, and there was just enough space for that until about lunchtime, when I would do my daily shopping (by that time I would pour the water into my water bottle on the bike frame). Sadly the Arc 15 model has been discontinued, underscoring the lack of lighter panniers on the market. There are indeed even lighter paniers (in the 500 gram range) by Arkel and Altura, but these seem too small to be useful if you are camping and cooking your own meals, and they are rather flimsy.

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foxyrider
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby foxyrider » 13 Aug 2018, 8:07pm

willem jongman wrote:We have always used Ortlieb classic panniers, and <SNIP>

Why don't you just use the Classic fronts - mine weigh in at @ 1100g - I removed the strap hook as I don't use the shoulder straps.
Last edited by Graham on 14 Aug 2018, 9:21am, edited 1 time in total.
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willem jongman
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby willem jongman » 14 Aug 2018, 9:05am

As an experiment I did precisely that for a long weekend in the Ardennes, but for anything longer they are a bit too small at 25 litres. I really would not know how to reduce my packsize enough, and that is with a PHD minimus sleeping bag and an Exped Synmat UL for sleeping. I could leave my Trangia 27 at home, but I like freshly cooked meals. Anyway, my Alturas weigh in at 1050 grams a set, so there is little to be gained there unless am happy to go the route for the 500 gram or so ulra+light sets like the Arkel Drylites but at about 22 litres in reality these were even smaller than the Ortlieb front panniers.
I am investigating reducing weight and packsize further, but I am clearly in diminishing returns territory. It does not make sense to me to invest real money to gain 10 grams here or there. Each time I need to replace a worn item I will look carefully, however, because technology does move on. At the same time some ultralight items are too fragile. An example may be the Exped Synmat UL that delaminated on my last trip. Fortunately the Altura Arc 15s are robust enough. They are not Orlieb bombproof, but pretty solidly made, but simple but reliable Klickfix hooks. Weight is saved because this type of hooks is not adjustable, so it all depends on your rack if the panniers will fit or not. That is probably also why Altura discontinued them.

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andrew_s
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby andrew_s » 14 Aug 2018, 4:05pm

willem jongman wrote:As an experiment I did precisely that for a long weekend in the Ardennes, but for anything longer they are a bit too small at 25 litres. I really would not know how to reduce my packsize enough, and that is with a PHD minimus sleeping bag and an Exped Synmat UL for sleeping. I could leave my Trangia 27 at home, but I like freshly cooked meals.

I've got on OK with a pair of Front Rollers and a Carradice saddlebag, with the tent crossways under the saddlebag flap

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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby willem jongman » 14 Aug 2018, 4:26pm

Sure, but that adds another kg.

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RickH
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Re: "Best" panniers for cycle camping

Postby RickH » 14 Aug 2018, 4:53pm

willem jongman wrote:Sure, but that adds another kg.

On thing I've done this year (I think I've mentioned it in a different topic) was to use ortlieb front rollers on a front lowrider with an Alpkit Koala 13l "bikepacking" sear pack on the back. The Koala is only 240g extra (plus the contents).