In the world of cycling exotic materials appear everywhere. One cannot go far without seeing carbon fiber, titanium or hell even magnesium being used on bicycles. It is in this day of incredible technological development and materials that I have yet to find a saddle bag that meets my standards. The saddle bag is by far one of the least exciting things about cycling, however you need a small tool box in the real world when things go south on the trail. I have destroyed quite a few already this season. Today I will show you the weakness of some saddle bags and the ultimate strength and style of the Arundel Dual Saddle bag.
First off let’s take a look at some of the features that should be considered when purchasing a saddle bag. I have found that riding on the road is much easier on any of the saddle bags that I have used over the years. It is in when things go off road that these bags take a beating. One important thing to consider is the material of the bag. The thicker the material the better, anything too thin will be worn through quickly. This is also relative to the seaming on any of the nylon mounting straps, I have seen straps torn from the bags completely due to inferior materials and craftsmanship.
Another thing worth mentioning is how the bag is attached to the saddle. I find nylon straps that are adjustable with buckles come undone too easily. When this happens either the bag flaps on the back of the saddle hanging on for dear life or it simply falls completely off the saddle. I recommend you look at bags that use a long strong strip of Velcro to attach to the saddle.
The last thing to consider is the size of the bag, you want to purchase the exact sized bag for your needs no more and no less. If the bag is too large you will hear your tools and your CO2 cartridges rattling inside while you ride. If the bag is too small you will not be able to carry the essentials required. With unwanted shaking the bag itself will take a beating.
Now onto the Arundel Dual Saddle Bag. I was compelled to purchase this saddle bag based on two things, size and how it mounted to the saddle itself. The Arundel Dual Saddle Bag does not utilize a seat post strap to assist in mounting. It mounts only to the saddle this is beneficial for two reasons. Anyone who rides has felt the Velcro strap on the their saddle bag rub onto their thighs and sometime wear onto their bib shorts. Not as important but worth noting the nylon straps can leave marks on the seat post if it is carbon.
Arundel places a thick piece of leather on top of the bag itself. When the bag is tightened up against the saddle this helps prevent contents from wearing through the material, as seen earlier on the Lezyne Caddy model.
The Arundel Dual Saddle Bag comes in a very small package but holds all the essentials for a day of off road riding. Most of the saddle bags rest horizontally however this one sits vertically on the back of the saddle. This prevents any form of rubbing and keeps the saddle away from the riders legs which comes in handy when descending downhill behind the saddle.
The bag itself is very simple a single nylon strap with strong Velcro to adhere it to the saddle. Internally it has no pockets and no thrills which is actually a preference for me I find more pockets use more material and precious storage space is lost that way. The bag holds plenty though for its shape and seemingly small looks.
The Arundel Dual Saddle Bag has been holding up great thus far I love its aesthetics as well as its functionality. The company is a small one with a large presence based in Fort Worth Texas, as a native Texan living in Dallas I cannot help but take some pride in that. I purchased this bag for $18.00 which is within the price point for most saddle bags on the market. Give this one a try next time you need one and for you roadies Arundel also makes a bag for tubular tires.