'Disposable' panniers

Discussion in 'Cycling Archive' started by Theo Markettos, Aug 27, 2015.

  1. There are two schools of thought regarding cycling accessories and theft.

    School A is to get the fanciest parts you can afford, and then lock them
    down tight/take them off the bike when you leave it, so that somebody
    doesn't steal them.

    School B is to get cheap parts and leave them on the bike. They aren't
    worth very much so unattractive to thieves, and if somebody steals them you
    just go and buy some more. This is effectively 'self-insurance' - balancing
    the re-purchase cost with the reduced hassle of securing the parts.
    (see also: leaving your 'hack' bike at the station for the weekend)

    I'm mostly in School B, and I'm looking for some new panniers. I just want
    cheap waterproof capacious 'bucket' bags I can leave on the bike most of the
    time, but are large enough to fit another rucksack inside. Ability to take
    a load of groceries without breaking would be a bonus. Don't need any fancy
    attachments or clip systems.

    Anyone suggest what to look at? I know Lidl occasionally have panniers, but
    the reviews I've read suggest the velcro doesn't attach to the bike well
    (while I might cope with cheap panniers, panniers that fall off and get my
    laptop run over aren't cheap any more). There's also a variety of dubious
    quality listed on ebay.

    I suppose I could get the Lidl ones and improve the attachment mechanism,
    but wonder if there's any other sensible options (beyond 'School A'
    manufacturers like Ortlieb)?

    Theo Markettos, Aug 27, 2015
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  2. Theo Markettos

    Peter Clinch Guest

    If you look at eBay then the likes of Ort are seemingly too desirable to
    go for low prices, but if you look at good-but-not-best options like
    Altura then a quick squiz suggests bargains may be possible.

    Anything can be rendered waterproof on the inside with the addition of a
    B&Q rubble sack, which also gets you around the "I can't put the bottle
    of milk in because the laptop's in there" issue.

    Peter Clinch, Aug 28, 2015
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  3. Theo Markettos

    Mike Causer Guest

    Altura are reasonable quality and price. Haven't tested their waterproof
    qualities, but they are fine with 10kg in each.

    Mike Causer, Aug 28, 2015
  4. Not quite. For serious use, you need bags that (a) will cause most
    of the water to run off and (b) not accumulate a pool at the bottom.
    Not a high hurdle, but it means that you can often get away without
    using both a liner and waterproof bags inside it! There probably
    are some bags that fail my tests - but they would also probably have
    fittings that would come detached and fail in other ways. The ones
    that go for under a tenner are probably well worth avoiding :)

    I know lots of people with Altura, and have heard few complaints;
    I suspect that you can say the same! But even cheaper ones would
    probably work.

    Nick Maclaren.
    Nick Maclaren, Aug 28, 2015
  5. The Lidl ones my wife uses have a series of plastic clips for
    attachment; they may not be as great as the Ortliebs but they get the
    job done.
    Roger Bell_West, Aug 28, 2015
  6. These look OK from Decathlon, 2 x 9litre, decent reviews,and only £14.99
    Harry Stottle, Aug 28, 2015
  7. Theo Markettos

    kimble Guest

    I've had no problems with the higher end Alturas (other than not playin
    well with the suspension of my Streetmachine, but I'd put them firmly in
    'School A'.

    Personally, while I use 'School B' quality panniers (Avenir) for doing
    my shopping, I still remove them from the bike, because I find it more
    convenient to be able to pack them in the shop. This is an argument for
    reasonably decent quick-release fixings, even if the pannier itself is
    fairly cheap.

    kimble, Aug 28, 2015
  8. Theo Markettos

    Rob Morley Guest

    Some of the cheap ones[1] strap on quite securely, but it can be a pain
    to work out where best to attach the straps, and the bags can flop
    around (a dog-leg rack will help to reduce this). Once they're strapped
    on they'll stay there, flop can be fixed by inserting some sheets of
    Correx or similar, and wrapping a bungee around them when empty. The
    fabric may be water resistant but the seams and openings probably not,
    so use a liner if that's a problem.
    Nobody is going to bother stealing that setup.

    [1] The ones with only side bags seem better to me than those with a
    top bag - if you use the top bag it gets in the way of loading and
    unloading the side bags, and if the side bags aren't stuffed the top bag
    can be unstable. Of course it may be that your protective laptop case
    fits perfectly in the top bag, in which case this may not be relevant.
    Rob Morley, Aug 28, 2015
  9. Theo Markettos

    Adam Funk Guest

    plastic crate & cable ties

    Adam Funk, Aug 28, 2015
  10. Theo Markettos

    Rob Morley Guest

    Rob Morley, Aug 28, 2015
  11. Theo Markettos

    kimble Guest

    kimble, Aug 28, 2015
  12. I've been having a look around at Altura and Avenir as mentioned - there are
    some good value Avenir clones of Ortlieb, and I also found some good offers
    on Vaude if you look about.

    However one flaw related to the 'School B' approach is it's a problem if
    they look too expensive, even if they aren't. It's no good if someone
    steals them with the mistaken impression they're worth something.

    So I'm wondering at the more basic items like:

    And see how well the attachments hold up. or whether they can be made a bit
    more secure.

    Theo Markettos, Aug 28, 2015
  13. Theo Markettos

    Tosspot Guest


    Tosspot, Aug 29, 2015
  14. Theo Markettos

    Tosspot Guest

    I used Altura for many years with no complaints. I'm an Ortlieb man
    now, but that was more rising salary amd wearing the Alturas out than
    dissatisfaction with them.
    Tosspot, Aug 29, 2015
  15. I have a Topeak Drybag Pannier and Altura Arc 20 Roll Top Pannier.

    neither have been stolen yet, from the bike, people have taken lights
    and bikes but not panniers yet.

    admitly the Toppeak is ziptied on since it attempted to jump for
    freedom, a few times.

    The Bike is a old grubby MTB so may be under folks radar?

    But I think that while they could the intrest in taking panniers is low.

    Roger Merriman
    Roger Merriman, Aug 29, 2015
  16. The first looks very plausible if you need only 30 litres, and they
    probably are telling the truth that they were selling it at 19.99.
    The second rings alarm bells - my guess is that it will be tatty
    and its zips or something will fail in short order. But both of
    those are just gut feeling, based on buying similar items.

    Nick Maclaren.
    Nick Maclaren, Aug 30, 2015
  17. Theo Markettos

    Tosspot Guest

    Those SJS ones look a steal for a tenner. They claim waterproof, draw
    cord closure nice for a quick chuck it on and go.

    In your boat, that's where my Kings Shilling would be going.
    Tosspot, Aug 30, 2015
  18. I am tempted... but the idea is to have a 'bucket' pannier that I can throw
    another bag into, so I'd rather it wasn't such a tight fit. Maybe it would
    work if I put the minimal in the bag and the other for assorted detritus
    (waterproofs etc).

    I already have some tatty old zippy ones that are rather too tapered at the
    bottom and aren't big enough to fit even an A4 folder (sideways). I assume
    these are even narrower than 26cm due to the end pocket - these might fit A4
    in portrait fashion but with little space to spare. It might fit through
    the drawstring, but that's no good if it's raining.
    You're probably right... I'm not a fan of zips in general.

    Theo Markettos, Aug 31, 2015
  19. Theo Markettos

    Sam Wilson Guest

    "Durable steel hooks (will not snap or break like plastic)." Maybe they
    won't snap or break *like* plastic, but I had the spring steel (or
    whatever it was) clip on an old canvas Karrimor go ping on me whilst
    racing to catch a train in Berwick on Tweed. Some inventive work with a
    spare bungee got us going again.

    Sam Wilson, Aug 31, 2015
  20. Theo Markettos

    Peter Clinch Guest

    Roos uses a Bike Bin, see http://bikebins.com/buyonline.html

    They're not cheap, but leaving them on doesn't seem to be an issue (I
    very much doubt she'd bother if she ever felt the need to dismount them)
    and they hit your other criteria aside from price pretty well. They
    seem to be in that category of "good but not sexy enough to be worth

    She just has the one.

    Peter Clinch, Aug 31, 2015
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