Quick & Cheap pannier

Beating the system - the cycling commuting section

Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby find_bruce » Tue May 31, 2011 11:07 am

I have a reasonable quality pannier & its waterproof. Unfortunately after 3 months a rivet pulled through so its back at the LBS for repairs.

I suspect that the pannier is not really designed to carry things like a laptop. I don't like wearing a backpack - too hot and sweaty even in winter, so have been looking for alternatives.

I like the idea of a solid pannier, like the Nashbar City Box but shipping cost is a killer.

Similarly I had thought of a pelican case, like this review, but it is only cheap if you already have the pelican case

Then on the weekend I was bin Bunnings looking for something else when I saw a 13L Robusta box.
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Mine came with a black lid.
$8 for box
$8 for fixing hardware - plates, bolts & nuts
10 minute job to fit it to my rack
Inside dimensions 37cm x 25 cm x 14 cm

Rode to work today in light rain & it appears to be waterproof & all is good. Time will tell how durable it is
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by BNA » Tue May 31, 2011 12:20 pm

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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby jet-ski » Tue May 31, 2011 12:20 pm

Nice looking box :) I'm thinking about fitting a box like that to my xtracycle for quick and waterproof storage of small items... will have to check Bunnings out.
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby lethoso » Tue May 31, 2011 2:16 pm

milk crate and some zipties is pretty cheap :D
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby find_bruce » Tue May 31, 2011 2:35 pm

lethoso wrote:milk crate and some zipties is pretty cheap :D


Yeah I'll give you quick & cheap, but unless they have brought out new milk crates, not quite so waterproof
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby jet-ski » Tue May 31, 2011 3:09 pm

milk crates remind me of the shirtless, smoking dudes with radios dangling from their bars :O
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby lethoso » Wed Jun 01, 2011 1:49 am

find_bruce wrote:
lethoso wrote:milk crate and some zipties is pretty cheap :D


Yeah I'll give you quick & cheap, but unless they have brought out new milk crates, not quite so waterproof


that's what shopping bags are for!
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby kodakmomentz » Thu Jun 02, 2011 12:23 am

Do you have a photo of the finished product? (attached to bike)
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby Xplora » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:03 pm

Looks like a sweet alternative to the Topeak Trunkbag. Only problem I see is that it might be too small for a pair of shoes so no good for the commute.
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby find_bruce » Thu Jun 02, 2011 2:55 pm

kodakmomentz wrote:Do you have a photo of the finished product? (attached to bike)


Nope no kodak moment today. Will see what I can do, but it might not be until the weekend.

Xplora wrote:Looks like a sweet alternative to the Topeak Trunkbag. Only problem I see is that it might be too small for a pair of shoes so no good for the commute.


Well knock me down with half a brick, just how big are your feet, cause its bigger than any shoe box I've seen :D

Of course what you need to carry on your commute will dictate what works for you. It's easy for me because I can leave most of my stuff, shirts, pants, towel, shoes etc, at work but I can still fit all that in. The real killer for me was the laptop which was slightly too wide & rectangular to fit into any top mount bag I had found.
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby Xplora » Thu Jun 02, 2011 5:48 pm

I'll keep an eyeball out, I've got some Bunnings vouchers :) My wife will be quite happy about me avoiding purchase of a Topeak setup, although the temptation is strong. If they did a MTX Trunkbag DXP in a wetbag format, I'd be there :)
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Photo of quick & Cheap pannier

Postby find_bruce » Fri Jun 03, 2011 5:04 pm

As requested, photos of the box as fitted to the bike
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Showing the two internal braces
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The underside, complete with road grime
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And just for Xplora, the box containg pants. shirt, towel, underwear & boots
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby Lizzy » Fri Jun 03, 2011 5:15 pm

That is really cool :idea:
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby CommuRider » Fri Jun 03, 2011 5:34 pm

Actually that doesn't look bad at all. Big step up from the milk crate version.

(it would look hideous with the yellow lid :) )
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby Xplora » Fri Jun 03, 2011 6:08 pm

If only it was a bit more aero :mrgreen:
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby il padrone » Fri Jun 03, 2011 8:04 pm

For a more aero version (more $$$ as well) get the Ortlieb Shuttle - $299 at St Kilda Cycles

Reviewed here.

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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby kodakmomentz » Sat Jun 04, 2011 7:19 pm

Thanks find_bruce for the pics. doesnt look much different to the purpose built pannier!
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby find_bruce » Sat Jun 04, 2011 8:36 pm

Thanks for your comments ladies and gents. Nice idea on the ortlieb, but $299 is a bit too close to what I paid for the bike in the first place :)

As for aero, the air has got to get past me first.
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby Mulger bill » Sun Jun 05, 2011 12:17 am

Just as a heads up, Velogear has a lockable trunk unit on sale ATM, free delivery over $39.99 too.
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby il padrone » Mon Jun 06, 2011 12:13 am

kodakmomentz wrote:doesnt look much different to the purpose built pannier!

:o :?

Well, I guess not..... if you ignore the lack of portability, security and waterproof closure.
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby Xplora » Mon Jun 06, 2011 8:48 am

I think you'd do better with a couple rivets and half a coke bottle for more aero. I'm thinking like those 6 ton trucks with the box on the back and the funny bruise above the cab. But that would compromise the neatness of the current solution.

Rubber gaskets would watertight it pretty easily, and look good too.

Either way, I think I'll have to laugh with myself on the aero joke, as if anyone would be worried about aero with that????! :lol:
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby find_bruce » Mon Jun 06, 2011 11:05 am

kodakmomentz wrote:Thanks find_bruce for the pics. doesnt look much different to the purpose built pannier!


Photos can be very deceptive - as well as all of the different features, the ortleib is more than twice the external volume at 52 cm x 37 cm x 24.5 cm compared with the Robusta at 43.5 cm x 30 cm x 17 cm. The internal vlolume is a little closer as the wheels, handle etc take up some of the space but you are still talking 25 litres v 13 litres.

Xplora wrote:I think you'd do better with a couple rivets and half a coke bottle for more aero. I'm thinking like those 6 ton trucks with the box on the back and the funny bruise above the cab. But that would compromise the neatness of the current solution.

Rubber gaskets would watertight it pretty easily, and look good too.

Either way, I think I'll have to laugh with myself on the aero joke, as if anyone would be worried about aero with that????! :lol:


I thought I had enough of the ghetto look tying my pump on with a couple of bits of old tube - just visible in the 3rd photo :D
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby CommuRider » Mon Jun 06, 2011 11:19 am

find_bruce wrote:I thought I had enough of the ghetto look tying my pump on with a couple of bits of old tube - just visible in the 3rd photo :D


I wondered what that was.
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Re: Quick & Cheap pannier

Postby find_bruce » Thu Jul 21, 2011 5:23 pm

Xplora wrote:Rubber gaskets would watertight it pretty easily, and look good too.


Finally got some nice heavy rain to test the box in (hey there has got to be some positives to the current hosing) and am pleased to report that the box remains completely dry & is holding up to daily use.

I did break the original lid early on by stuffing too much into it, so you know, don't do that.
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