Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Commuting
Reload this Page >

Are Panniers worth the cost?

Notices
Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

Are Panniers worth the cost?

Old 10-22-13, 12:36 AM
  #51  
acidfast7
Banned
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: England / CPH
Posts: 8,563

Bikes: 2010 Cube Acid / 2013 Mango FGSS

Mentioned: 42 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1053 Post(s)
Liked 29 Times in 24 Posts
Originally Posted by jrickards View Post
If everything you think you need can fit in a backpack, this might be the thing for you. This particular rack is called the Sherpa and is available from Peter Whites Cycles for about $160 but I think I've seen another for much less than $160.

tout terrain

FWIW, peter white just resells european bike stuff in the US. it's usually more economical to go around him and get it shipped directly or through a middleman to the US.

http://www.en.tout-terrain.de/accessories/racks/

http://shop.tout-terrain.de/epages/e...Rucks%C3%A4cke

compare that to the PWC price ... in addition you can take 19% of the total price off as you won't have to pay VAT for a US sale. (€149-20%+shipping for the bag and frame).
acidfast7 is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 12:39 AM
  #52  
acidfast7
Banned
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: England / CPH
Posts: 8,563

Bikes: 2010 Cube Acid / 2013 Mango FGSS

Mentioned: 42 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1053 Post(s)
Liked 29 Times in 24 Posts
also, I don't like panniers are they're too mono-functional.

they're not comfortable for shopping or rock-climbing and not so good for an airline carry-on.

however, i will say that when I fly into southern Germany, I often see a tired Ortlieb or two used as a carry on.

Germans
acidfast7 is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 01:21 AM
  #53  
Drew Eckhardt 
Senior Member
 
Drew Eckhardt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Sunnyvale, CA USA
Posts: 5,738
Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 293 Post(s)
Liked 13 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by starkmojo View Post
Thus far I have been carrying it in a backpack which after a week of soreness I have finally found a certain amont of peace with it- but I keep wondering would panniers make the bike commute faster
No. I get a couple MPH drop on flat ground and estimate a 20% drag increase.

and or more comfortable?
Completely and worth the slow down.

Enough to make the price worth it for the next few months?
Yes.
Drew Eckhardt is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 02:35 AM
  #54  
Bike Gremlin
Bike Gremlin
 
Bike Gremlin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Novi Sad
Posts: 4,081

Bikes: Custom made on Scott Speedster frame, Custom made on a 1996. steel MTB frame (all but frame changed at least once in the past 20 years).

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 949 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by acidfast7 View Post
also, I don't like panniers are they're too mono-functional.

they're not comfortable for shopping or rock-climbing and not so good for an airline carry-on.

however, i will say that when I fly into southern Germany, I often see a tired Ortlieb or two used as a carry on.

Germans
When it is raining, it is a lot more convenient to carry panniers, than backpack with rain cover - for me at least. When shopping for lots of stuff, panniers give extra space in addition to backpack.

However, I too prefer backpack - most convenient when off the bike, or when riding off road aggressively.
Bike Gremlin is offline  
Old 10-22-13, 02:42 AM
  #55  
acidfast7
Banned
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: England / CPH
Posts: 8,563

Bikes: 2010 Cube Acid / 2013 Mango FGSS

Mentioned: 42 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1053 Post(s)
Liked 29 Times in 24 Posts
Originally Posted by Slaninar View Post
When it is raining, it is a lot more convenient to carry panniers, than backpack with rain cover - for me at least. When shopping for lots of stuff, panniers give extra space in addition to backpack.

However, I too prefer backpack - most convenient when off the bike, or when riding off road aggressively.
I agree although my backpack seems to keep most stuff dry.

Also, it's the transition that's nice ... lock bike and head into the gym or on a bus ... it's just more hassle with a pannier ... even those weird Ortlieb wanna be backpacks
acidfast7 is offline  
Old 10-23-13, 02:03 PM
  #56  
KGood
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Ohio
Posts: 20

Bikes: Trek FX 7.2

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I just got the Ortlieb Back Roller Classics yesterday and biked to college today with them packed to the brim probably 30+ lbs. So far they are great. Bumpy roads didn't budge them from the rack at all and they were relatively easy to carry them with the strap to class. I have a feeling I will find many uses for them and maybe make some to trips to the grocery. At the beginning of the year I ordered the Patagonia Black Hole Messenger Bag which offers ample room for a big laptop but it was too big for me so I went with the Patagonia Half-Mass Messenger Bag. Only down side is it's not very big and isn't waterproof so that's why I bought the Back Roller Classics.
KGood is offline  
Old 10-23-13, 04:30 PM
  #57  
DX-MAN
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 4,788
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by the sci guy View Post
i'm assuming you mean a duel suspension MTB? as that would certainly make attaching a regular rack from the seat stays to the rear wheel hard. if it's just a regular MTB though, racks a plenty, man. my hardtail MTB i use for commuting, i got the topeak MTX rack for like $25 on amazon.

what about a seat post rack?
Yep, full-suss Kona. Old Man Mountain makes pannier racks, but they are PRICEY. I've been working up a little design change to a standard rack, but it hasn't come together yet.

UHH, just a note for future reference: if you're ASSUMING I have full-suss, why tell me about hardtail stuff? And TRUST ME, I KNOW about accessories, particularly as they apply to MTB. I live, eat, breathe, and sleep that shat.
DX-MAN is offline  
Old 10-23-13, 08:09 PM
  #58  
Shahmatt
Senior Member
 
Shahmatt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Singapore
Posts: 473

Bikes: Cruzbike Flamingo folding conversion, Oyama East Village

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Regarding bungee nets and the like. I used a cheap bungee net once on my rack but it got stretched and soon became useless. I understand that the Delta net is very good and well reviewed.

I've been using the TECHKIN three hook bicycle cargo tie.
http://www.aliexpress.com/item/21423...604597329.html

They've held up extremely well for around 5 months of use and show little wear and no perceivable stretching. A couple of these and anything can be strapped on to a rack.

I combine this with a Roswheel 14224 6 litre seat post bag for my phone, wallet, tools and the like.
http://www.roswheel.com/en/prshow.asp?id=266
Shahmatt is offline  
Old 10-23-13, 09:09 PM
  #59  
cyclokitty 
Not safe for work
 
cyclokitty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 2,118

Bikes: KHS Town and Country 100 & Jamis Durango Femme 1.0

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I bring home groceries in panniers on my bike and it's much more comfortable and I can carry more in a pair of panniers than in a backpack. I like it. It works. The panniers were bought on sale and the rack was $20. All is good in my world.
__________________

cyclokitty is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 07:47 AM
  #60  
Leebo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: North of Boston
Posts: 5,507

Bikes: Kona Dawg, Surly 1x1, Karate Monkey, Rockhopper, Crosscheck , Burley Runabout,

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 785 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 29 Times in 22 Posts
I got some stiff canvas bags at the army navy surplus store for bags on the rear rack, 3 for $25.00. Works great. If I'm going to carry 10-20 lbs, much easier bike handling to carry the weight lower instead of on my back.
Leebo is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 08:04 AM
  #61  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: West Village, New York City
Posts: 37,586

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1973 Raleigh Twenty, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 440 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5683 Post(s)
Liked 252 Times in 177 Posts
I bought my wife a pair of Nashbar shopping panniers. We are pleased beyond expectation with them. They are sloppy and ugly, but they were cheap, and they're very convenient. They're lightweight, and they go on and come off very easily. I think I paid only $50 for them. They work much better than the Basil panniers I have and paid more for.

http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...2_172282_-1___

They're uglier in person than on the web page.
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 10:15 AM
  #62  
the sci guy 
bill nyecycles
 
the sci guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Houston TX
Posts: 2,739
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 506 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 18 Posts
Originally Posted by noglider View Post
I bought my wife a pair of Nashbar shopping panniers. We are pleased beyond expectation with them. They are sloppy and ugly, but they were cheap, and they're very convenient. They're lightweight, and they go on and come off very easily. I think I paid only $50 for them. They work much better than the Basil panniers I have and paid more for.

http://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...2_172282_-1___

They're uglier in person than on the web page.
i wouldn' call those shopping panniers. these are shopping panniers: http://www.llbean.com/llb/shop/61867...niers&subrnd=0
__________________
Twitter@theSurlyBiker
Instagram@theSurlyBiker
the sci guy is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 10:20 AM
  #63  
Wanderer
aka Phil Jungels
 
Wanderer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Aurora, IL
Posts: 7,992

Bikes: 08 Specialized Crosstrail Sport, 05 Sirrus Comp

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 141 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
I bought a set of these, about 5 years ago. http://www.performancebike.com/bikes...47_-1___000000 They get used every day, and have been the handiest things I have ever bought. I keep them mounted flush tight, against the side of my rack when not in use, with monkey balls.
Wanderer is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 10:36 AM
  #64  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: West Village, New York City
Posts: 37,586

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1973 Raleigh Twenty, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 440 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5683 Post(s)
Liked 252 Times in 177 Posts
Call them whatever you like. They have only one compartment and no pockets. Closing them does not result in a neatly folded bag. But it's fine. The two bags are not attached, so you can use one at a time. In fact, we keep one in each of our two homes.

I discovered that strapping my 8-pound lock to the top of my rack gives my bike a shimmy. Tossing it in the pannier does not.
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 11:16 AM
  #65  
alan s 
Senior Member
 
alan s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 6,705
Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1379 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 74 Times in 50 Posts
I have a full set of Ortleib rollers for touring, but for commuting, use a Topeak MTX DXP trunk bag with slim drop down panniers. The trunk bag is more aero, even with the panniers deployed, and carries everything I need. I love the Ortleibs, but they are more than I need for commuting.
alan s is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 12:52 PM
  #66  
droy45
tougher than a boiled owl
 
droy45's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Rocky Coast of Maine
Posts: 1,125

Bikes: Fetish Cycles Fixation / Fuji S12S / Gary Fisher MTB / Raleigh Grand Prix / Ross Professional / Kent comfort cruiser

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Your laptop will not be hurt inside the bag or pannier as long as its shut down and not just suspended. I can't imagine your commute route being that rough to break the display or hurt anything else. The internals are all solid state and it is a mobile device so I would pack it. I have a new fairly expensive dell laptop from my company and it is the cheesiest, crappy laptop I ever had and I have carried it in panniers with no problems. If all you have now is the backpack, then by all means strap it to the rack, absolutely do not carry it on your back, that just puts more weight on your saddle which hurts your butt and you'll get really sweaty. You can get a set of panniers for fairly cheap that will carry your clothes, lunch and laptop. Mine does. Its a lot of weight when you add this all up but its commuting not a race.
droy45 is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 01:08 PM
  #67  
bigbenaugust 
always rides with luggage
 
bigbenaugust's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: KIGX
Posts: 2,108

Bikes: 2007 Trek SU100, 2009 Fantom CX, 2012 Fantom Cross Uno, Bakfiets

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 266 Post(s)
Liked 14 Times in 11 Posts
I toss my netbook or lappy in the panniers once in a while, sometimes in its own case and sometimes not.

My ancient pair of REI panniers has finally gotten moldy (welcome to the south??), and the Seattle Sports pair is falling apart. they are being sacrificed for hardware for a set of Cannondale panniers... and of course, the kitty litter bucket pannier.
__________________
--Ben
2006 Trek SU100, 2009 Motobecane Fantom CX, 2011 Motobecane Fantom Cross Uno, and a Bakfiets
Previously: 2000 Trek 4500 (2000-2003), 2003 Novara Randonee (2003-2006), 2003 Giant Rainier (2003-2008), 2005 Xootr Swift (2005-2007), 2007 Nashbar 1x9 (2007-2011), 2011 Windsor Shetland (2011-2014), 2008 Citizen Folder (2015)
Non-Bike hardware: MX Linux / BunsenLabs Linux / Raspbian / Mac OS 10.6 / Android 7
bigbenaugust is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 01:27 PM
  #68  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: West Village, New York City
Posts: 37,586

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1973 Raleigh Twenty, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 440 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5683 Post(s)
Liked 252 Times in 177 Posts
Hard disks have a tendency to crash, especially when jostled. I'd recommend a SSD if feasible.

Or removing the hard drive is easy with some laptop models. You could carry the hard drive in your pocket where there's more suspension than on the bike.
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Old 10-24-13, 10:42 PM
  #69  
Bike Gremlin
Bike Gremlin
 
Bike Gremlin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Novi Sad
Posts: 4,081

Bikes: Custom made on Scott Speedster frame, Custom made on a 1996. steel MTB frame (all but frame changed at least once in the past 20 years).

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 949 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by noglider View Post
Hard disks have a tendency to crash, especially when jostled. I'd recommend a SSD if feasible.

Or removing the hard drive is easy with some laptop models. You could carry the hard drive in your pocket where there's more suspension than on the bike.
What in the world happened to the "park" command?!
Bike Gremlin is offline  
Old 10-25-13, 02:15 AM
  #70  
DXchulo
Upgrading my engine
 
DXchulo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Alamogordo
Posts: 6,208
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 122 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
For the OP I would just bungee the backpack on the rack.

I have panniers, but to me a backpack plus bungees is more convenient off the bike. I only use the panniers when I have to (carrying lots of stuff or something big).
DXchulo is offline  
Old 10-25-13, 07:23 AM
  #71  
the sci guy 
bill nyecycles
 
the sci guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Houston TX
Posts: 2,739
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 506 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 18 Posts
panniers are also more "convenient" if you bring your bike inside your office instead of locking it up somewhere outside or in the parking garage.
__________________
Twitter@theSurlyBiker
Instagram@theSurlyBiker
the sci guy is offline  
Old 10-25-13, 08:30 AM
  #72  
Telly
What, me worry?
 
Telly's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Athens, Greece
Posts: 1,226

Bikes: Corratec / Jamis

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
  • Are Panniers worth the cost?

Absolutely! At least the ones I buy for commuting purposes which are inexpensive.

* Panniers are practical since they ARE your bag/tote where you can have everything you need with you, on or off the bike.

* I believe that they also add a degree of safety in commuting because from my experience drivers often leave more space when overtaking, especially at night when the panniers have big distinguishable reflective stripes and patterns (adding a light on them also helps!).

* Personally, I hate having objects in my pockets when commuting, so even if I don't carry stuff with me, I always have small personal items placed in panniers (helps if they have adjustable straps to take up the slack when empty).

* and last, and this might sound silly, but I've been told by a couple of drivers that they tend to trust cyclists which have panniers (and protective gear) since they are generally the ones which abide to traffic laws and safer to ride with in traffic.

Hope this helps!

Last edited by Telly; 10-25-13 at 08:34 AM.
Telly is offline  
Old 10-25-13, 12:16 PM
  #73  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: West Village, New York City
Posts: 37,586

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1973 Raleigh Twenty, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 440 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5683 Post(s)
Liked 252 Times in 177 Posts
I've spent years and years strapping my whatever-bag to my rack with bungies. It takes a lot more trouble than something that's made to attach and detach easily. Every time I use bungies, I have to invent a new way of attaching things. I also have to be careful that the bungies are tight, because if they come loose and grab the wheel, it's inconvenient at best and dangerous at worst.
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Old 10-28-13, 06:19 PM
  #74  
westrid_dad
Senior Member
 
westrid_dad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Idaho
Posts: 108

Bikes: Surly Ogre, Cannondale Topstone 105, Yeti 575

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I went through the same decision process this fall. I had been commuting for years carrying everything on my back, either via a messenger bag, or a laptop backpack most recently. But, as I get older I was getting more and more tired of the weight on my (sweating) back, and being restricted in how much i could carry. I went back to panniers (after about 10 years of back-packs) and am really happy. I have one pannier for my computer stuff (including a heavy laptop like you), and another pannier for clothing and lunch. What is really nice, though, is that I have enough room to bring several layers of cycling clothing. Here in Idaho, the fall mornings can start off cool in the 30's, but be up into the 60's / 70's by the time I'm heading home. No problem, just stash my cool-weather gear into the pannier for the ride home and pull out my short-sleeve jersey and finger-less gloves and I'm good to go. I also don't need to worry about how large my lunch is or bringing in a fresh towel for showering. It works for me!

Also, another motivator to switching to panniers was giving me more flexibility in being able to add some distance to my commutes. I can turn my 5 mile commute into a 15-20 mile training ride without worrying about the extra weight on my back. If anything, I'll pack a Camelback with me in the morning and use it in the afternoon for a longer ride home. Again, I didn't have that flexibility when I was trying to carry everything in a backpack.
westrid_dad is offline  
Old 10-28-13, 09:49 PM
  #75  
niuoka
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: lebanon oregon
Posts: 196

Bikes: trex 7500, old diamondback, older diamondback old frankenbike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by the sci guy View Post
i wouldn' call those shopping panniers. these are shopping panniers: http://www.llbean.com/llb/shop/61867...niers&subrnd=0
those look like they would be worthless in the rain
niuoka is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.