Rack and Bag or seat bag for commuters?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Rack and Bag or seat bag for commuters?

    Good mornin guys,

    I am looking to buy a J.Paks seat bag soon for some bikepacking and the thought crossed my mind to use that on my commutes as well. Considering I use the same bike for bikepacking and commuting it would be nice to not switch back and forth.

    Anyone commuting with a seat bag instead of a rack and bag?
    "Never mistake motion for action."

    "If I can bicycle, I bicycle."

  2. #2
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    I've done it on the mtb a few times, but I have a commuter bike set up with a rack and trunk bag. Just makes it easier to haul clothes, food, plus odd shaped work items. I have friends who commute with a full bikepacking setup (framebag + seat bag) no problem. BTW J.Paks is a great choice!

  3. #3
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    Are the seatbags and handlebar bags like those from J.Packs and Revelate easy enough to get in and out of on a daily basis? All the compression straps and the general shape looks like it would be tough to say, go shopping and make multiple stops.

    I have a very low saddle so a rackless seatpack would be nice.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ginz View Post
    Are the seatbags and handlebar bags like those from J.Packs and Revelate easy enough to get in and out of on a daily basis? All the compression straps and the general shape looks like it would be tough to say, go shopping and make multiple stops.

    I have a very low saddle so a rackless seatpack would be nice.
    In my experience, yes. The bike attachment points are separate from the bag closures.

  5. #5
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    I normally carry a change of clothes (jeans, t-shirt, underwear), small lunch, two tubes and some small tools. Right now I am using a Topeak MTX bag and it barely fits.
    "Never mistake motion for action."

    "If I can bicycle, I bicycle."

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ginz View Post
    Are the seatbags and handlebar bags like those from J.Packs and Revelate easy enough to get in and out of on a daily basis? All the compression straps and the general shape looks like it would be tough to say, go shopping and make multiple stops.

    I have a very low saddle so a rackless seatpack would be nice.
    I don't have one, but the reason why is that the Revelate seat packs required a minimum number of inches of exposed seatpost for clearance, which I did not have. The smaller one would have worked, but it was out of stock at the time, and I'm not sure they make it anymore. Review the specs carefully to make sure it will work on your bike. I would also check the shape/size if you are using it for shopping or work stuff; it seems like they would work better for "stuffables" than say a box of cereal or laptop.

  7. #7
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    I have my lock in a seatbag, and stuff I need to bring in a backpack.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  8. #8
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    I have strong feelings against anything on my person while riding. If I am mountain biking I dont mind a small camelbak and less on the bike. Touring/commuting, I want nothing on me.
    "Never mistake motion for action."

    "If I can bicycle, I bicycle."

  9. #9
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    I prefer a rack and panniers/trunk bag. With a rear rack you have the flexibility of 2 panniers and a trunk bag or a combination there of. Plus you can do this with a rack you can do this if you have to.
    Rack and Bag or seat bag for commuters?-img_0234.jpg

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by snailspace View Post
    I prefer a rack and panniers/trunk bag. With a rear rack you have the flexibility of 2 panniers and a trunk bag or a combination there of. Plus you can do this with a rack you can do this if you have to.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Valid, sir, very valid.
    "Never mistake motion for action."

    "If I can bicycle, I bicycle."

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by L4NE4 View Post
    I have strong feelings against anything on my person while riding. If I am mountain biking I dont mind a small camelbak and less on the bike. Touring/commuting, I want nothing on me.
    I was also li9ke that like a few years ago, if I could I would have kept everythi8ng on a rack. But then I found out its not actually everyday you need to keep **** on the rack. and then it just a hassle to even have it. So I went without. I'm not saying its **** but I just didn't find any better solution than seatbag and backpack. Otherwise I would have gone with it. My complaints is that I get sweaty onhj the back when usin the backpack, but I still get that without. And I feel a little thats what its is about, getting sweaty and fit that is. Otherwise I would hasve taken the train. I mean you do this in the first place to get better as a person imho. Both phys/psych
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by snailspace View Post
    I prefer a rack and panniers/trunk bag. With a rear rack you have the flexibility of 2 panniers and a trunk bag or a combination there of. Plus you can do this with a rack you can do this if you have to.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    I have gotten monsters like that too, but I just open the box and take eveything out, and put it in regular shopping bags and my backpack, at he post office. worst case scenario I strap the whole box onto my bike with industrial strength straps (long ones too) but luckily that has never happened even though I have bought almost complete staitionary computers in pieces so to speak (lots of parts and not mentoioning AIR ((its mostly air to be honest)) in those boxes). But yeah then its a hassle but you can still make it without the rack. imho. I coiuld have gotten a rack but preferably a good one, that don't look weird. and possibly made out of ti or something good. But yeah you need to see those first.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  13. #13
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    Although I considering getting a car, I think pretty much think everything that was really high performance in maybe 1965 to 75 is nice. And those have good lines... And I would like drive that vehicle on sundays, and since they are probably not very efficient It would cost me about 50-100 a week, but I can take that but not everyday plz. that is the obvous alternative though.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  14. #14
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    I have Revelate Visch - something or other - seat bag that I use on my KM and a home glued badly stitched frame bag that was a Karrimor rucksack for 20 years before it was a frame bag for 4 years (it is completely dead - just waiting for JPaks to finish a proper one, hopefully this week Joe?).

    The frame bag (or series of holes masquerading as a frame bag to be more accurate )lives on the KM all the time. I only ever take changes of clothes with me - I don't need to lug a laptop or anything so if I take the KM I shove the clothes in the frame bag.

    On the double cross which I use most days - I have a Topeak seat post QR beam rack and MTX Trunk bag with fold down panniers. Seat bags take a bit of organising to get right I can cart groceries for a family of 4 in the 22 Litre MTX bag no problem whereas an economy size box of cereal won't fit in the seat bag. However if you are just bringing a change of clothes and the like it won't be a problem with a seat bag
    I am the first to admit that if I had all that bulk that snailspace pic shows I would catch a cab or rent a car - I wouldn't be on the bike.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by snailspace View Post
    I prefer a rack and panniers/trunk bag. With a rear rack you have the flexibility of 2 panniers and a trunk bag or a combination there of. Plus you can do this with a rack you can do this if you have to.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Snail....you are a freakin stud!!!!!

  16. #16
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    I used a revelate viscacha for 6 months for commuting (brought it for bikepacking as well). I agree that you need to plan what you will be bringing and it will be no substitute for a rack and panniers if you need to carry heavy or bulky items.

  17. #17
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    I like the streamlined simplicity of seat bags, but, I'd be lost without my rack and at least some paracord and zip ties if not my panniers. I am new to this and may be missing something. Would the rack interfere with something else?

  18. #18
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    The thing about having a rack on the bike is that it's there when you need it and when you don't need it it's not in the way. There's no practical reason not to have a rack on a commuter bike/daily rider. If aesthetics of the rack are unpleasant to you, that is a valid reason to opt for other means of hauling.

    I love panniers when they are carrying my things while I ride, but I care for them much less when I have to drag them around with me off the bike. I try to limit my load to one pannier so ai have less to lug about.

    I'm tempted to try a huge saddle bag the likes of the rivendell offerings, large carradice, or one of the small american companies like frost river. They look like they could swallow up a messenger bag or backpack with all my things inside and they are attatched to the bike rather securely so I could simply take my bag out of the saddle bag and procede on my way when I get to my destination.

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