Top Tube Bags for Gravel Bike

Anyone have any toptube bag recommendations for long gravel rides/races?

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I use Giant’s bag on my gravel bike. Not sized for bike packing type trips. For me it’s the perfect size for day trips. Big enough to hold the essentials, stays put. Just a simple, yet effective gear carrying solution…

Giant Top Tube Bag

I bought a Revelate Mag-Tank 2000 recently. Love their frame and seat post bags (have a “Vole”). The Mag-Tank’s ease of opening is great but due to its shape items can fall out when you open it. Revelate admits this in its item description, but after using it over the past few weeks I realized it is a serious flaw. I think it is a great concept, and ok for winter fat bike riding. But for bumpy gravel/hard roads it would be a failure.

On the market for another bag!

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Take a look at this company. Owned by riders and good folks. They will do custom colors and bike fit specific for your bike. I just ordered a bag for my Salsa Cutthroat to mount on the top tube.

http://www.dirtbags.bike/?v=7516fd43adaa

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I’ve used this bag for the past month or so, and it’s nice. Plenty of room, good detail on the attachment velcro, and it’s robust.

I’ve been using the regular Mag-Tank for longer rides on over the last couple years. I think the narrower profile holds things in better because I don’t recall anything ever falling out during a ride.

Of course, there’s a lot less space so it might not solve your issue…

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big fan of my rogue panda alamo bag. gotta love the logo.

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Thx for all the great suggestions. Great folks here for sure.

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I tried a bunch of these, they’re surprisingly difficult to find a good one. Common problems:

  1. Too wide and hit knees - Avoid anything wider than 2" -2.5" towards the rider.
  2. Too tall and floppy - Anything taller than 2" (5cm) you need side structure.
  3. too hard to open - not enough longitudinal structure with a zipper. remember you need to open one handed when it’s mostly empty.
  4. doesn’t close well - bad closure mechanism
  5. too difficult to clean - you’re putting empty goo in there.

OK… tips -

  1. Look for something between .75l and 1.25L. This is big enough for a set of gloves, food, a tool, etc.
  2. Don’t go nuts looking for water proof, just get something that’ll shed water.
  3. Straps - most of them suck. You want something that wont scratch up your bike or move around too much. Put some clear protective tape down. Get some l silicone straps.
  4. The cheaper ones tended to be better solutions than the expensive ones.
  5. Don’t get a super long one if you’re going to be stopping at a bunch of traffic lights, as you’ll be jamming your crotch into it. Though, I had an unstructured bag with arm warmers and gloves in it that made a great top tube cushion- pure luxury at lights.
  6. Bolt on quick disconnect - Bontrager Quick Release bottle cage bolts. Silly expensive and not great for daily removal/replacement, but they work well.

Bolt on bags: Tried a bunch.

Seemed nice but not great
-Apidura Racing - too floppy and tall.
-Wolftooth frame pump bag - not advertised for this, but its just 1/2" too wide and too long. Would be great if just a bit smaller.
-Specialized bura bag- too big. this is for bike packing.
-Cervelo Aspero bag - heard it was too thin.
-Tri / TT style harder plastic - too small, only for gels.

Misc strap on only - haven’t tried too many . The Bontrager one looked nice at the store. https://www.trekbikes.com/us/en_US/equipment/cycling-accessories/bike-bags-baskets-panniers/bike-bags-panniers/bontrager-pro-speed-box/p/13984/?colorCode=black

Other thoughts… If you have a 56+ CM frame, consider a small frame bag like Apidura Racing’s bag. Way more convenient and you can carry more (more warmers, vest, hats, etc). Doesn’t work great without side-exit / MTB bottle cages (eg Elite Cannibal XC) . https://www.apidura.com/shop/racing-frame-pack/ this is my go-to , with the top tube bag staying at home.

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If you’re doing a gravel race then I’m gonna assume you aren’t using a handlebar bar.

I’m going to get one of these:

Personally I’d use a toptube bag for food or inner tubes, but go ahead if you think you need the ballast.

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daaaaaaaaaad

[e] oh this was definitely an accidental necro.

I recently got a Trek Checkpoint SL7 gravel bike and it has mounts for a bolt on top tube bag.

I have a strap on bag that I use on my road bike but looking for a similar style bag for the Chekpoint that is bolt on. I don’t want something really big, but rather something that would hold some bars, gels, chews, etc.

The recently release bag from Niner looks nice but is currently sold out.
https://ninerbikes.com/collections/accessories/products/niner-bolt-on-bag-top-tube-one-size

Wondering what recommendations you all have.

Similar size and shape is the Silca tt time capsule. I have one on my gravel bike. Mostly doesn’t hit knees, looks good. Long enough to carry mini pump which is nice. Not tall enough and too tapered to hold a phone. bummer. fits gels, bars, homemade food, keys, etc.

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Unfortunately, no one has a decent quick release bolt system (Maglock bolts & Bontrager Quick cage bolts are close)
Get something with a side pocket or is rubber your used gels. If it’s bolt on, you can’t remove and replace every ride,so it’s gonna get sticky!

If you can find one, this discont specialized bag is the best of the rubbery ones because it is a decent size and just the right shape https://pcocycling.wordpress.com/2015/08/27/specialized-remora-top-tupe-storage/

Lol. I really thought this thread said ‘top tube bag for gavel.’ Totally thought we had a judge riding a bike to work in full robes with no where to put his gavel lol.

I have too much time on my hands for daydreaming…

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I added “Bike” to the description, for clarity :stuck_out_tongue:

Like most scenarios…I kinda preferred my fantasy to the reality :cry:

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I’ve used this for a couple years and find it much more practical than a saddle bag and quite possibly more aero. It still gets weird looks from other road riders. Fits a multi tool, two stout Pedro’s tire levers, Hutchinson tubeless tire patch kit box that also has room for a spare CR2032 battery, chain quick link, emergency cash, presta adapter and valve core tool, a dynaplug capsule with an extra valve core in one of the blank spots, and a CO2 inflator+cartridge. The outside pockets can hold some overflow food if desired but I usually use my jersey pockets for that.

Yesterday, I noticed my aerobar starting to twist while doing Wright Peak - took out my multi tool to tighten the base plate without even having to stop pedaling during the recovery interval :slight_smile: