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Rivendell bag question(3 posts)

Rivendell bag questionDjudd
Oct 18, 2001 4:00 PM
In an attempt to keep commuting interesting and dynamic I checked out the Rivendell website and saw two bags that looked good; the Baggins Banana Bag and the Carradice Longflap. The problem is I can't get an idea of the dimensions of either from the photos. I would appreciate any feedback from anyone who has experience with either bag. Specifically, how much junk will fit in those trunks (i.e. clothes and other commuter-type stuff). Additionally, what about water resistance. Any help will be appreciated.

Got a Lowsaddle Longflap, and I love it.cory
Oct 18, 2001 8:53 PM
I bought it sort of semi-reluctantly, because I liked the idea but $75 is a lot of money and it's pretty ugly. I've had it six months or so, and I really like it. I think Grant may have dropped the Lowsaddle, but the Longflap is the same bag one size bigger.
Mine measures (I'm estimating while I look at it through the window) about 16 inches wide, 8 or 9 front to back and 8 deep, though of course it's soft so there's some flex and stretch. The flap unfolds and has a second set of straps inside, making it about four inches longer, and there are pockets on each side, also w/straps and buckles, that will hold a wallet or a few energy bars or a big bottle of lube, but not quite a water bottle.
It's actually bigger than it sounds. I can carry an entire Sunday San Francisco Chronicle plus whatever else I think to bring with me--I've never tried to load anything I couldn't get in, including everything I take off when I leave on a 30-degree morning and come home when it's 80 at noon. There are D rings on top, too, so if you carry some twine or cord you can tie a rhinoceros on top of the thing.
A half-gallon of milk will go easily, with room on one end for the Oreos and some French bread. A fleece jacket, size XXL, plus tights and a shell. I've never done it, but looking at the thing, I'm sure I could load enough stuff for a backpacking-style camping trip except for the sleeping bag (I have a little one-man tent), including a tiny stove, sandals (size 15) and a sweater. Then the bag could tie to the D rings or go on my luggage rack, which I'm thinking of taking off because I never use it anymore.
Incidentally, don't worry about attaching it to the rings on the back of a Brooks saddle--The straps will loop around the rails of almost every saddle I have, though I use it most on my Atlantis with a B-17.
re: Rivendell bag questionRay Sachs
Oct 19, 2001 5:38 AM
The bannana bag is just a really big seat pouch (albeit a really nice looking one). I carry the usual tools and tube in it, plus it has room for a cable or a light jacket. You can also lash rain pants or something to the top of it, but it isn't really a big cargo carrier, just bigger than your average wedge pack. I like it for long day rides in changeable weather, but it's not enough to carry a commuting load.

Riv doesn't sell Carradice anymore (supply problems and they've started their own line of competing "Baggins" bags). You can still get them at, which also has information on dimensions, or have them imported from I have a Nelson Longflap (not the biggest, but good size). On a 58cm road bike, it doesn't hit the tire unless I have a weird load in it that causes it to sag in the middle. On anything smaller than a 56, though, it's be really tight if you didn't have a rack or fenders to keep it off of the wheel. It carries a good bit. Cory's description sounds right to me. I've done credit card tours in the summer with just the dice and a small handlebar bag. One warning about the carradice - if you attach it in the normal way (without a rack or something to hold it more upright) your legs WILL brush against it when you pedal. Most people don't mind this (never bothered me in the least), but a few people hate it.

For commuting, I eventually evolved into using a touring bike with a rack. I keep a small pannier on the right with rain gear, a small seatbag with tools and tube, and a Carradice Bike Bureau on the left, which is a briefcase that functions as a pannier. I can pop the panniers off for reasonably lightweight weekend rides (not that this is a particularly light bike) and carry plenty of stuff between home and work. And walk right into a meeting with the bike bureau. The bike bureau is a bit more expensive than a longflap, but I find it much more useful for work trips.