Any experience with Ortlieb, Thule, or Axiom panniers?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Any experience with Ortlieb, Thule, or Axiom panniers?

    I was looking at some Thule commuter panniers today and discovered that they were way too tall for my bike and big shoes, heel clip appeared inevitable. Otherwise, I loved the design, but not the price.

    Axiom and Ortleib both have similar rear panniers without the hide- away mounting hooks, and in much better proportions for me and the Bosanova. The LBS will order any of these at a small discount, but sold the last Ortleib bag on the floor yesterday.

    Any thoughts on any of these brands for durability, water resistance, and ease of clipping on and off? I think I am looking at the smallest bags offered by all three manufacturers as I don't need big volumes. Is the hidden hardware really worth the extra dough for a campus or office bag?

  2. #2
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    I've used Ortlieb Front and back roller classics with Tubus racks for years. They are totally waterproof, very rugged survived numerous crashes and being goared by a wild boar in Indonesia; as panniers go they are excellent.
    Not cheap and quite heavy for commuting. I prefer the Topeak DXP trunk bag for commuting
    A buddy just got a set of panniers and racks from Bruce Gordon - these have a better compression system and easier access than the Ortliebs - I would go for those if buying again but I am more into bike packing these days. But those are ludicrously expensive something like $300 a pair

  3. #3
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    I use axiom racks and panniers on 2 of my commuters and so far happy with them. I have the ones that are water resistant and have been happy with their performance. Axiom does have life time warranty. I bought the axiom rack as they have a variety of panniers, baskets, bags that attach to it.

  4. #4
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    Thanks, I'll look at trunk bags a little more seriously.

    Are the Ortleibs as cumbersome to get in and out of as they look? My canoeing dry bags have similar closures, which are great for keeping the sleeping bag etc. dry, but I only open them once or twice a day.

  5. #5
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    I have Ortlieb Back Roller City's. I recently got them (first set of panniers) and have rode in one rain fall. Everything was bone dry. The Ortlieb mounting system is rock solid once you get it dialed in to your rack.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rustedthrough View Post
    Any thoughts on any of these brands for durability, water resistance, and ease of clipping on and off? I think I am looking at the smallest bags offered by all three manufacturers as I don't need big volumes. Is the hidden hardware really worth the extra dough for a campus or office bag?
    I've used a variety of Ortlieb bags for over a decade. Between my GF and I we use one or two on a daily basis.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  7. #7
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    Thanks all, the internet and my LBS have got me looking critically at Axiom's Randonee series. This thread has me looking more seriously at Ortlieb.

    Both manufacturers have great options, I can get the Axioms for a little less money and they look like they are more cooperative for commuting. Am I misreading things?

    I may want one set for commuting/ grocery shopping and another for touring, does that make a difference to anyone's recommendations?

  8. #8
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    Ortleib is good. Carradice looks better when it's older though.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rustedthrough View Post
    Thanks all, the internet and my LBS have got me looking critically at Axiom's Randonee series. This thread has me looking more seriously at Ortlieb.

    Both manufacturers have great options, I can get the Axioms for a little less money and they look like they are more cooperative for commuting. Am I misreading things?

    I may want one set for commuting/ grocery shopping and another for touring, does that make a difference to anyone's recommendations?
    Ortlieb makes a lot of panniers - so it really depends what specific bags you are comparing. They have commuter bags, shopping bags and touring bags.

    View Ortlieb Products at http://www.ortliebusa.com

    I think the roll top touring bags work well for everything including shopping and commuting.

    When I am just touring I like the flip top bags they make.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  10. #10
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    Vik, thanks for the suggestion. The back rollers look pretty good. What are the flip top Ortliebs you mentioned?

    Just got an Axiom rack with standoff feet at the braze ons, gained enormous heel clearance as well as some weight capacity. I am thrilled.

    Has anyone had negative experiences with Axiom bags, or just positive experience with Ortliebs?

    My new rack led to me getting a heavily discounted Thule single commuter pannier. I love the attachment system so far, but the opening is much, much smaller than the bag. The newer versions look like they have resolved that, some even have roll tops like the Ortliebs.

    The Thule hide- away hook system is pretty sexy, but I'm not convinced that it is all that useful. The magnetic lower anchor however, is both slick and seems to work flawlessly. I might consider building some magnets into the lower end of whatever bags come next, as Thule and Grad school don't look likely to mix well from an economic standpoint.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rustedthrough View Post
    Vik, thanks for the suggestion. The back rollers look pretty good. What are the flip top Ortliebs you mentioned?\


    View the Bike-Packer Classic (pair) at https://www.ortliebusa.com
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

  12. #12
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    Thanks all. The suggestion from Vik and the plus version of the bike packers look pretty near perfect. Now we'll have to see how many pennies and nickels I can find on my rides.

  13. #13
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    I've owned and used the Backroller classic for about 8 years of commuting and it (I sold the other one of the pair in a moment of stupidity) has been very, very solid. Waterproof as long as I roll it right, easy on and off and secure enough to stay put over off-road (and off-bike) excursions. They were spendy but snagged them during one of REI's annual sale for a significant discount. They work well for getting in and out of before I leave and at work, but kind of a pain to dig stuff out of while on the road. I'd buy them again in a heartbeat.

  14. #14
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    Has anyone used the roll top waterproof versions for canoeing/ kayaking?

    They look to be the same as my current dry bags, but in a better size and with magical mounting hardware. Versatility might trump easy access if that is the case.

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