Lets talk Bags

I know that this could have been covered before, but fuck it. Lets talk bags.

I am in the market for a backpack as I am outgrowing the crumpler messenger bag that I am currently using.

· The bag that I am on the look out for is something that is super functional for commuting, so it will need to carry shoes, jacket, shirt, gstring, etc.
· It needs to be waterproof as I carry the work back up drive to and from home each day.
· I would like a couple of external pockets for easy access to mobile phone / wallet / keys / drink bottle
· A place to clip a rear light onto and a few reflective strips would be good, but it is not necessary
· When not full of stuff, I don’t want a bag that still will feel bulky and be a nuisance.
· A bag that doesn’t create blind spots when riding

The main thing is as well, is I want it to help me out when travelling around the States later this year.
So I will be walking in cities a lot, camping + hiking. So it needs to be as comfortable as possible when walking around all day.

I have done a lot of research on particular bags, but I think I am in that state where I have done to much and yet there is still no clear contender and I am just reading the same shit over and over again. The main reason is I haven’t been able to try any on and see how it moves around when you have a full load in it. A site that I stumbled upon has helped a lot: Carryology | Exploring better ways to carry bags, wallets & more. with articles such as:

Our Favorite Versatile Backpacks | Carryology
Head to Head | Bike Oriented Backpacks | Carryology

So I am looking for people to give me some feedback / advice who have done a bit of travelling with their bags that they use day in and day out when commuting as well. As well as what they do and don’t like about their bag.

Any help will be welcomed with fairy claps.

Mission workshop vandal has been serving me well for almost a year now, seems like it ticks all the boxes except for the blind spot thing. I wear my bag pretty high on my back though and it has adjustable straps at the should to adjust how high or low it sits.

One of the bags I keep coming back to is the Rambler actually. I think the Vandal, from all reports, might be a little too big for what I need it for.

Backpacks / The Rambler Roll Top Bag || Mission Workshop

this hits all the points except for water bottle compartment.

i’ve got the Vandal, which is large enough for a week long holiday (if staying in hotels/on ppls floors) and when positioned high on your backobstructs the view a bit when doing headchecks. it’s super comfy whether empty or fully loaded, but after a while makes your back sweat up like a boss. would happily use a Rambler daily if i didn’t have panniers, which i got because the Vandal is just too large and annoying for everyday.

also, the front pockets on the MW bags are just large enough to pack your George Costanza wallet into. i can get my wallet and keys into one, then the phone in the other, and thats it.

EDIT:: seems like i/you read your/my mind. ^^

if you want, i can pop over to saintcloud and test the rambler directly against my vandal and report back with how it feels on my back??!

Brisbane Outdoor Gear | Chunky Toad: Medium Backpack

Might be a little big for your needs, but BOGear are amazing.

the rambler does indeed tick all your boxes, but as stated before, doesn’t have enough external pockets. it only really has one tiny little pocket that can fit your phone/wallet, the rest has to be engulfed by the huge main pockets.

also if you’re a sweaty dude, the mesh back lining isn’t really ideal for hot aussie days

Yup, another on the list… Might have to look into a custom chunky toad.

I really like my Chrome Pawn, but same as Generic Hipster, it has blind spots.

I carry a change of clothes for work, plus lunch no problems. I also carried 35 DVD’s (in jewel cases) the other day no problem. It’s water proof too. In summer I filled it with ice and used it as a backpack esky.

I use it commuting everyday, plus I used it in the US as carryon luggage. It’s pretty simple and straight forward, but I like that about it. It’s got one main section, one smaller section and two front pockets. Has loops for lights too.

But I always get a sweaty back.

This is the sticking point with the bag, I drink a crap load of water because I am a sweaty dude. So I am always reaching for the bottle.

Blindspots on these bags seem like a bit of a common problem.

T-Level Challenger 32L or for something a bit bigger, T-Level Ifinity roll top 43L.

Ifinity left, Challenger right.

Was opting for the Challenger as a commuter bag, but since ill be travelling a fair bit, i went the larger Infinity… So far in the 20 mins after i’ve picked it up from jaseyjase in an alley next to nandos it has been great. Feels really secure, plenty of pockets and straps to mess around with. Got a floor pump, couple bar and stem combos and chainring and wasn’t uncomfortable at all. Only thing was depending on how high you wear the bag i found it hit the back of my helmet occasionally… but for 220 its really good value/quality and international shipping from korea is only 3 or so days… thats my coolstorybro.

Oh, I went with the Chrome after having a messenger bag of theres for three years no problems, and I was lucky to get the Pawn for about $130 in SF.

Kiasu and i just bought a T-Level Rolltop, seems to tick most of your boxes storage/compartment/weather wise, but i havnt put it through the ringer just yet.

*edit…beatn =|

with the MW bags, there’s a slimline pocket between the main and your back, they call it the rolltop compartment…
could put a bladder like THIS ONE in there for your water needs?

Hmm, good thinking. How do you reckon that would actually go in the roll top? Does it still actually need to roll?

I have this bag:

Backpack - Futura 28 - Deuter Sport GmbH & Co. KG

its not cycling specific but its got a alot of good features like a bladder slot (good for D-locks), water cover, two internal compartments.
the negative is that when heavily loaded (~10kgs) it does tend to ‘bounce’ because of the back webbing arrangement.

I don’t use the roll top function, only once when i had oversize stuff in it, and couldn’t close it over and do up the buckle.

the straw would have to follow the flap away from your back, so you’d need to check it’ll be long enough. or you could customise and make a small hole to thread it through at the base of the flap…on the inside of course.

there’s probably something else out there that will do it better.

Oh yeah, the Pawn is a smaller version of the Ivan.

I like the roll top on mine. I’ve filled the back to the very top and ridden home with it open too, plus it’s handy to “roll over” stuff to carry. I got my wife’s frame home like that the other day.

Jumbo Roll Top « roadrunnerbags

I’ve actually never owned one so I can’t tell you about it (my current bag doesn’t meet your expectations)… but this one does. Only unsure about the blindspot factor, though I do believe that could be moderated by changing the length of the straps and whatnot. Also, that brand makes other small nifty bags that can be clipped on/attached if you ever want MORE pockets.

already covered. http://www.fixed.org.au/forums/f10/community-service-announcement-balls-22361/