SF Cyclotouring

Ride reports and other ramblings from a San Francisco cyclist.


Budget Front-rack Bags

I'm slowly gathering the parts to build up a new low-trail frame and fork. One of the reasons for this new bike is that I'd like to try a front-rack-mounted cargo bag for long-distance rides. I already have a couple of different racks I want to try, but I don't have a front bag. The standard these days seems to be the pricey Berthoud bags, but at upwards of $250, they are a little beyond budget, especially during any experimental phase. To that end, I'm looking for budget solutions...

I've read on the iBOB list about someone hacking a $20 Nashbar Elite handlebar bag to work on a front rack, and that intrigued me. I ordered one of these bags last month, but the zippers on the bag were installed so poorly that it was rendered all but useless, and I sent it back.

Other folks have gotten creative with insulated cooler bags (examples 1 and 2), and even canvas tool bags of the sort you can buy at big-box home-improvement stores.

I was just thinking that perhaps there is some sort of military-surplus bag that could be had cheaply and is easily modified to work on a bicycle rack...after a bit of surfing I found this $10 bag that looks promising...What do you think (big photo here)? Looks like it's about the right size (11" x 5" x 7" tall). Remove the carry straps, velcro a map case to the top, add some internal stiffener panels, and fasten the bag to a rack with nuts and bolts, or even zip-ties. I bet it would work!


Blogger cyclofiend said...

Is 14" wide x 9" deep x 10" tall too big?

2:35 PM  
Blogger Jim G said...

'14" wide x 9" deep x 10" tall'...? yeah, that sounds overly large for what I'm envisioning. why, do you have something in mind? ;)

2:41 PM  
Blogger cyclofiend said...

Yeah. I got a bag hanging around that is unused. I'll phone ya a photo.

10:50 PM  
Blogger franklyn said...

Velo Orange's ostrich bag is half the price as that of Berthoud, but still not as cheap as those canvas tool bags. Just need to sew on some strap patches, then it will be a go.

1:17 PM  

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