I wanted the smallest, sleekest, most silent and aero tool bag; a massive upgrade from the tool roll I previously made. I found the extra space between the bike saddle seat rails was not utilized by most other bags.
Part of my process to create something new is to hand sketch a bunch of ideas to get my mind wrapped around the limitations of the saddle bag design. After many iterations, I finally landed on a coin purse type of bag with straps but with a horizontal zipper. I was determined to keep the size as small as possible to secure the contents so they wouldn’t rattle; nobody likes random noises coming from their bike. I really the simplicity of the final bag, and the ability to access the tools inside without taking the bag off the bike.
The first version, Mark 1, is very small and designed to hold only the minimum about of tools needed for emergency bike repair. I originally wanted a divided compartment but decided it would be too difficult to construct and keep a clean, sleek look on the outside. I used 1000 Denier Coated CORDURA® HP Polyester Fabric – True Timber MC2 Purple, and a reflective zipper but due to the small size of the bag the reflective is barely visible. This bag has found a nice home on my MTB since I keep an extra tube in another bag located on the frame and rarely use it where where reflective is necessary.
Mark 2 is made of 1.0 oz dyneema. I found Mark 1 would only fit a superlight tube but not a standard tube as with the rest of the tools needed for emergency repairs, so I made Mark 2 slightly taller and only used one strap as two seemed overkill for such a small bag that is already reinforced and secured between the saddle rails. The zipper seam where the webbing attaches is facing the wrong direction and the threads started breaking so I knew I needed to revise the direction of pull for the next iteration.
Mark 3 has been completely seam sealed on all seams for waterproofness and I added a panel just above the zipper to the correct direction of pull for the webbing. I made it with Lite Skin LS-07 on top, the lower is distressed reflective fabric with a yellow coated zipper to match the reflective pinstriping on my bike. A magnetic Fidlock buckle and printed camo webbing with a reflective perf strap to hold the webbing in place completes this bike tool bag ensemble. Mk3 increased in size from Mark 2 and can fit two regular size tubes and all my tools, and is currently living on my road/gravel bike, same bike, same same. Run what ya brung, Rim brake life.
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