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  1. #1
    Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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    Hacking a Carradice Saddlebag



    In response to some questions about hooks I was using for my saddlebag, here's a little photo tutorial. Sorry for the crappy photos.

    _____________________________________



    The Barley comes with straps like this one. The basic idea is you start it inside the bag on one side of the dowel, run it out through the hole, then through the loop, then back in the hole in the bag on the other side of the dowel, then buckle it inside the bag. Fine if you've got half an hour to kill every time you lock your bike.



    Start with a basic hook you can find at any hardware store (I assume). This one had a metal tab so it would lock better; I took it out to make hooking/unhooking easier. (Yes, I'm that lazy.)



    Run the strap through the hook like so. The way I have it, the buckle is on the bottom side of the dowel, so that the slack from the straps head down, rather than getting bunched up at the top. I also position the hook so that it hooks around the front of the loop on the saddle. Much easier for me to get it off and on.



    I use two brass washers. The only thing to know, obviously, is that the hook won't fit through them. I use two washers, this leaves as much of the hook as possible inside the bag, therefore keeping the bag as close to the saddle as possible. It looks a lot better, and prevents the hooks from jogging loose.



    After running the strap through the hook, run the hook through the washers.



    Put the "assembly" in hook-first. The hook goes through the hole; the strap wraps around the dowel.



    See?



    Buckle it up, then repeat on the other hole.



    There ya go!
    Last edited by DrRoebuck; 01-30-2013 at 08:56 AM.
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  2. #2
    MB1
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    Nice tutorial. Makes me want one of those bags.
    Quote Originally Posted by the_dude
    these are better than i was expecting, and my expectations were already rather high.

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    "Makes me want one of those bags." Me too!! I got a Brooks Millbrook Holdall on order. It is a bit smaller than the Carradice Barley.

  4. #4
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    Elegant solution. Does it matter if the hook is facing up (as you have it) or down? I use the SQR system because the my Brooks saddles (Swift or Team Pro) don't have saddle loops. The SQR isn't as elegant as your solution, but has a quick-release feature that let's me take the bag with me.

  5. #5
    Ride The Lightning
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    Do all Brooks have rear saddle loops? In some pictures, I noticed the Swift does not have it, but ironically, the smaller Swallow does. Strange.

  6. #6
    Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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    Quote Originally Posted by PdxMark
    Elegant solution. Does it matter if the hook is facing up (as you have it) or down?
    Thanks ... Yeah, with the hook facing up, it's easier to attach. I just bring the bag up from below the saddle and in one move it's done. With the hooks facing down, you have to come in from above at an awkward angle.


    Quote Originally Posted by Kung Fu Felice
    Do all Brooks have rear saddle loops?
    Some do, some don't. The Swifts don't. The Team Pros (like mine) with Ti rails do, the ones with chrome or copper rails don't. You can find a lot out at Wallingford.
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  7. #7
    Man, I'm Awesome
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    Thanks a lot. I will have to do this.
    "I like to ride my bicycle." - Lance Armstrong -

  8. #8
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Well, you helped convince me to order a Carradice Barley. FWIW, I ordered mine from St. John's Cycles in Britain (www.sjscycles.co.uk). Their prices are about $30 less than US sources (which all seem to be out of stock right now anyway), and even with shipping, the total cost was about $20 less. The Barley has about the same storage space as my trunk bag, but I can eliminate my rear rack. It also looks better and presumably will distribute weight better.

  9. #9
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    saddle bags

    I use saddle bags from Rivendell as they come and I really like them because you do not need a rack. Great idea and pictures.
    never,never,never give up

  10. #10
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    So, after ordering my Barley seatbag last week, I decided to put my old Brooks B17 on my bike over the weekend. I hadn't used the saddle in a while and forgot about the various Brooks' quirks. Setting it up was a pain, and I absolutely could not move the saddle back far enough for my correct knee-over-pedal position. So it looks like I will need to buy a new seatpost with more setback, unless the Barley could be adapted to fit a more conventional saddle like the Fizik I have been using.

    Previously I had used the Brooks on my Merckx frames and it fit fine, but those frames have very relaxed seat-tube angles (72.5). My new bike, a DeBernardi, apparently has much steeper angles as even with the saddle pushed all the way back on the rails, it was still 1 cm closer to the handlebars than I prefer. I thought I could adjust, but the saddle position made for an uncomfortable commute today. I felt all scrunched up on my frame, too upright, and actually felt more pressure on my hands -- probably from the nose not being up high enough. That's the other Brooks quirk. When I used the B17 before, I kept having to raise the nose until it looked kind of freaky so I wouldn't slide forward. Apparently I didn't raise it enough.

  11. #11
    Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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    Quote Originally Posted by tarwheel2
    So it looks like I will need to buy a new seatpost with more setback, unless the Barley could be adapted to fit a more conventional saddle like the Fizik I have been using.
    Others on this thread have said they've been able to wrap the straps around the rails of their standard saddles. The straps are decently long, so I wouldn't be surprised if that worked for you. If they're not long enough, you could always replace them with something longer (though likely not as pretty).


    Quote Originally Posted by tarwheel2
    That's the other Brooks quirk. When I used the B17 before, I kept having to raise the nose until it looked kind of freaky so I wouldn't slide forward. Apparently I didn't raise it enough.
    The trick is to angle the nose of the saddle up, so that it's slightly above level. This lets you pivot back on your sit bones, keeping you well situated.
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  12. #12
    Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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    Quote Originally Posted by tarwheel2
    So it looks like I will need to buy a new seatpost with more setback, unless the Barley could be adapted to fit a more conventional saddle like the Fizik I have been using.
    Others on this thread have said they've been able to wrap the straps around the rails of their standard saddles. The straps are decently long, so I wouldn't be surprised if that worked for you. If they're not long enough, you could always replace them with something longer (though likely not as pretty).


    Quote Originally Posted by tarwheel2
    That's the other Brooks quirk. When I used the B17 before, I kept having to raise the nose until it looked kind of freaky so I wouldn't slide forward. Apparently I didn't raise it enough.
    The trick is to angle the nose of the saddle up, so that it's slightly above level. This lets you pivot back on your sit bones, keeping you well situated.
    "He groaned when we hung the rope over the tree but was relieved to see the white pinata."
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  13. #13
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    I know about raising the nose of the saddle, but apparently didn't raise it enough. When I reinstalled my B17 last weekend, I used a level to make sure the nose was elevated, but underestimated how much it had to be raised. I rode with Brooks saddles for a couple of years, but quit using them once I found that a Fizik Vitesse fit me just as well at half the weight. The Fiziks also have longer rails and fit all of my bikes without having to use strange seatposts with massive amounts of setback. What's interesting is that my Fizik saddles are perfectly centered on the seatpost clamps, but the Brooks won't fit even jammed all the way back. Wallbikes sell some inexpensive Kalloy seatposts that look to have about 1-1.5 cm more setback than my current posts (Campy Chorus and Selcoff), so I'll probably give that a try.

  14. #14
    Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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    Quote Originally Posted by tarwheel2
    I know about raising the nose of the saddle, but apparently didn't raise it enough. When I reinstalled my B17 last weekend, I used a level to make sure the nose was elevated, but underestimated how much it had to be raised. I rode with Brooks saddles for a couple of years, but quit using them once I found that a Fizik Vitesse fit me just as well at half the weight. The Fiziks also have longer rails and fit all of my bikes without having to use strange seatposts with massive amounts of setback. What's interesting is that my Fizik saddles are perfectly centered on the seatpost clamps, but the Brooks won't fit even jammed all the way back. Wallbikes sell some inexpensive Kalloy seatposts that look to have about 1-1.5 cm more setback than my current posts (Campy Chorus and Selcoff), so I'll probably give that a try.
    Duh. I read it wrong. Thought you meant you kept raising the handlebar.
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  15. #15
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    Took my first ride with the Barley saddlebag today. Hmmm ... not sure if this is gonna work. As I related earlier, I couldn't use my Brooks B17 on my commuter bike frame because the seat tube angle is too steep to move the seat far enough back. So I reinstalled my Fizik saddle and went to the hardware store looking for a way to clip the Barley to it. Found some swivel clamps similar to what DrRoebuck used, and figured out a way to clip the saddlebag to the rails pretty securely. However, the bag hangs lower than it would if it were strapped to a Brooks saddle, and I experienced a few "issues" riding with it. First, the backs of my thighs hit the saddlebag on each stroke, which is annoying. Second, due to my legs hitting the bag and the way it's connected, the Barley starts swaying as I peddle along, which is annoying and also affects my balance. Is this why many people use bag supports or racks with large saddlebags like the Barley? Looks like I might have to use a rack afterall, which is part of the reason why I got the Barley, so I wouldn't need one.

    On the plus side, the Barley looks nice and holds a lot of stuff. One of my initial concerns, that it would be a huge aerodynamic drag, was apparently unfounded. The bag juts out no further on the sides than my thighs, so it's essentially in the slipstream. Another nice feature is the positive attachment for my tail-light, which is positioned just right on the bag.

  16. #16
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    Hi DrRoeBuck, I know that this was posted a long time ago. I've been looking for away to attach my carradice to my saddle quickly. From what I've read your way sounds great but unfortunately your pictures haven't loaded up could you possibly repost it?

    Thanks

  17. #17
    B2
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    I'll ditto that. I just recently purchased a Barley Bag and it definitely would be nice to have quicker way to connect and disconnect it.

  18. #18
    Jerkhard Sirdribbledick
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    Fixed. Sorry about that, folks.
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  19. #19
    B2
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    Awesome - Thanks DrRoebuck

  20. #20
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Man, talk about bringing a thread back from the dead.

    I've been using my Barley bag now for nearly 6 years and it's still going strong. BTW, the easiest way to attach a Carradice bag is to simply use their Bagman quick-release rack. It not only supports the bag and keeps it from swaying, but makes it very simply to attach and remove.

  21. #21
    Workin' for the Man
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    Thanks for reviving this thread. I remember trying to find it a few years ago, but failed.

    And thanks DrRoebuck -- a great solution!
    If you would please put your input underneath mine, that would be great. -- Steelflex

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