Tech Custom Frame Bag

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,805
1,762
433
Miura, Japan
#1
I do occasional bike packing trips and that has enabled me to try out tons of setups on my bikes.
I have run drop bar, flat bar, jones "h-bar" set up and all kind of of stems, suspension, rigid, etc...
All of my setups have had good points and bad, but the one thing I have loved the most - a full sized frame bag.
You can store tons in it if you need it and you can toss junk in it for everyday errands.
My Fargo is my only current bike with a full bag and I take it on occasion over my Krampus due to the bag.
While some don't mind - I don't like backpacks on the bike unless it is a hydration pack.
My Fargo bag is a revelate that is made specifically for the Fargo. The fit is pretty perfect. There are a few things I would like to see different, however nothing worth spending more money on now that I have it.

I don't have a full bag for my Krampus. I looked at the Revelate again as they have one near specific for this bike. BUT... If I am going to pay for that, how much more for a custom bag? Prices can vary and so can quality, so you need to do some homework.

I started my research with hitting up friends and friends of friends. Advice varied, but in the end - http://www.beckergear.com/ received nothing but compliments. I know Tupper (owner) and I didn't ask him his opinion or even mention I was looking. I just kind of researched as independently as I could. My bias was present as I was looking for a small shop vs the big companies. Not because I hate the big companies (I have hundreds of dollars wrapped up in Relelate and Apidura stuff), but because my experience with smaller companies seems to be a touch more rewarding. I feel I am supporting someone vs something, but if the company is worthwhile, I am getting something more than the mass produced models. The downside to small companies is that there can be a lag between ordering and receiving custom stuff. Ask anyone who has ordered a custom frame!
But the kicker of it all.... price. It is only $40 more expensive than the Revelate, but made specifically for my bike.

This is my Krampus sitting in my office just yesterday. Then current Revelate bag is good for wallet, snacks, bills, a drink, etc... But my coffee thermos doesn't fit and a waterbottle on the downtube is crowded. This is the major reason I take my Salsa when I don't have my daughter with me. Shallow, I know.
Temp5.jpg

Tupp didn't have a template for the 2018 version of my bike, so I was tasked to make one. Per the request, I needed the inside triangle with all frame features marked. Any cage mounts (inside or outside the frame), derailleur band location, dropper hole, etc... All this is needed for the outline of the bag, but also where the straps can and cannot be located to attach to the frame.

I started with a diaper box. This is this cardboard and I can use it to get things going. With a sharpie I marked all the frame features.
I used a small additional piece of cardboard to mark the front of the triangle as well.

temp1.jpg

Once that was in place, I laid it out on a piece of poster board and traced it. I marked the features with explanations so Tupper would know exactly my frame layout.
temp3.jpg temp2.jpg

Now is the hardest part.... waiting.

I will update when I get feedback from Tupper or I get the bag back.
Once he sees the size, I can opt for a more expensive set of options, but I am waiting for his experienced eye to have a look.
Super stoked!
 

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,805
1,762
433
Miura, Japan
#6
This time of year Tupp is busy with Mushing bags for sleds. I just told him to fit it in when he could.
There was no rush on my end - just excitement to get this bike sorted exactly how I want it.
I have my racks installed now and night light set up, so it is just the frame bag and a dropper if I choose to install it.
 

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,805
1,762
433
Miura, Japan
#9
It has arrived.
Initial lookover - nothing special, nothing bad. It is exactly what I expected no surprises.
The Zipper is large and moves super easy. It will be easy to handle even with winter gloves.

20181210_153418.jpg 20181210_153425.jpg
 

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,805
1,762
433
Miura, Japan
#10
The Fit is great - must have been my kickass template! It went right in as expected.
The straps I like more than my Revelate/Salsa bags. They are tapered and leave no extra hanging off. Overall - stoked.
The pocket on the right is shallow and narrow. Perfect for keys, wallet, etc...
The pocket on the left will hold whatever you stuff in it. Coffee canister, Jacket, Water bottles, other bottles ;) , food, etc...
It will replace the pannier I have been using for back and forth to work easily.

In the end, this bag was only $25USD more expensive than the generic revelate.
The shipping was most of that. So in the end, less than $10 to get a bag custom made for my frame vs an off the shelf mostly fits bag.

I just slapped this on as I had other bike matters that were more pressing.

20181210_153824.jpg 20181210_153857.jpg 20181210_153902.jpg 20181210_153936.jpg 20181210_153938.jpg 20181210_154005.jpg
 

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,805
1,762
433
Miura, Japan
#13
Observation - not a complaint

The good/bad -
This bag is lighter than the revelate bag, however I have no doubts as strong.

You need to load this bag balanced (Right to left) or else the zipper track does not align well. Not a biggie, I was able to shift the load in the pack and zip it up with space, but the Revelate has stronger form preventing the deforming and allowing you to "shove" shit into it. The revelate back is also on a bigger frame and it has an additional compartment that stitches to both the right and left side adding rigidity.
 
Likes: Forsbrook

Karl

Maximum Pace
Feb 7, 2011
539
407
83
Yokohama
#15
I do occasional bike packing trips and that has enabled me to try out tons of setups on my bikes.
I have run drop bar, flat bar, jones "h-bar" set up and all kind of of stems, suspension, rigid, etc...
All of my setups have had good points and bad...
BUMP

Thinking about getting the Moloko Bar or Jones H bar for my Surly. The Surly is my comfort bike -- commuter, weekender, endurance, trail & touring bike. Any comments on either of those bars? Reviews say they are really comfortable. Only concerns are the swept back angle (not sure how that would feel and how it would affect handling) and the width (given that I'll be in traffic quite a bit).

BTW... I went ahead and got the Selle Italia saddle. CRC had them on clearance so picked one up for 6k. Liking it a lot.
 
Likes: bloaker

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,805
1,762
433
Miura, Japan
#16
I have been using Jones bars on several different bikes for over 7 years.
I like them - a lot!
The sweep back angle is very natural and once you get the right angle - you will be hard pressed to find more comfy bars.
I use Lizard Skins North Shore grips - that are larger than most and super cushion. For my Krampus - it is perfect.
I used them previously on my Soma and for a bit on my Fargo. My wife also has a set on her Salsa Vaya.

I have yet to touch a Moloko Bar. I almost got a set with my Surly, but opted to go with a bar I know I like.
My Surly has a lower front end, so I opted to go with the new 2.5" riser jones bar. I love it.

My Wife has the 660, I have the 710s. If you are unsure, order the 710mm and cut them down if too wide. They are pre-marked so not difficult to cut and keep symmetrical. I used a 660 for a long time - but now I just prefer the wider grip.
 

Karl

Maximum Pace
Feb 7, 2011
539
407
83
Yokohama
#17
Great. Thanks a lot.

Ever since I put wider tires on my Cross Check and converted it to a 1x with a 42 rear cassette, it has become my favorite bike to ride. The Jones H bar looks like it makes it easy to carry a front bag or roll and still be able to have real estate needed to mount lights and other do-dads, so good for touring. Thanks for the feedback.
 
Likes: bloaker

Karl

Maximum Pace
Feb 7, 2011
539
407
83
Yokohama
#19
Nice!

Looking online for a store that sells them. Direct from Jones adds $50 bucks for shipping. Do you know of a distributor in Japan or online seller that sells them?