Experimental music, photography, and adventures

Acorn handlebar bag: first impressions and test ride

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

My wife is the best. I’ve been wanting an Acorn Handlebar Bag for quite a while now. These bags are hard to get, but she saw an opportunity to get one last week and ordered it for me. Acorn makes two handlebar bags, a large, boxy one that sits on a front rack; and a smaller bag that attaches to the handlebars. I have the smaller one.

Out of the box, the bag looked very impressive. It’s made of thick, stiff canvas and leather. It has a small front pocket closed with an elastic cord, a main compartment accessed by two zippers, and two rear-facing pockets with metal clasps (my camera fits perfectly). And, the bag looks even better on my bike.

P1060838

P1060840

P1060842

I had some issues mounting the bag. I still don’t think I’ve found the optimal configuration, but a little more experimentation and it will be perfect. As you can see above, I put the buckles on the outside of the bag, thinking that it would be easier to get the bag on and off this way. However, Acorn recommends putting the buckles inside the bag, and I think I will try that.

The biggest problem I had with the bag during my test ride was that when I went over a large bump, such as a curb or speedbump, the bag flipped up in front. There are small stabilizing cords, and I tried hooking these to the both drops and the hoods. The cords just didn’t seem to be doing the trick. I have been experimenting with using leather straps instead of the cords, and I think that that is going to work very well. Time will tell.

For a test ride, I decided to ride on the paved Levee Trail, and to ride some of the dirt trails that connect to it. This would give me a good idea how the bag fares in rough conditions, and it would give me a fun ride.

P1060854

The trails were quite muddy, and overgrown in places. Aside from the aforementioned problems with the cords, the bag held up well. In fact, it bounced around less than my old Banjo Brothers handlebar bag. I did notice that I can’t really ride with my hands on the flat part of the bar with the bag mounted there. I may try to use some kind of spacers to make more room between the bars and the bag. Overall, a minor annoyance, and one that I think I can work around.

(That ends my comments about the bag. Maybe I’ll do a full review once I have had a chance to run it through its paces.)

P1060864

P1060867

P1060868

P1060873

P1060879

P1060881

P1060888

P1060902

P1060904

P1060914

I emerged from the woods and rode along the base of the Levee Trail for a bit. I saw another trail heading back into the woods and decided to explore it.

P1060922

P1060928

These trails were even muddier, and I found some pretty interesting wetland areas, where I saw a couple of egrets and some other creatures. I also found a way to pass under highway 309, rather than attempting to navigate the road right by the exit ramp.

P1060929

P1060934

P1060936

P1060941

P1060945

P1060948 P1060950

P1060955

I ended up riding on a different part of the levee. This part had a mown grass surface. I wonder if they’ll ever officially connect the two parts of the Levee Trail that the levee reaches.

P1060956

P1060962

P1060964

I found a neat dirt jump area on my way back. I decided not to try dirt jumping on the Long Haul Trucker. Soon, I rode back out onto the familiar, paved Levee Trail and rode back home.

P1060965

5 Responses to “Acorn handlebar bag: first impressions and test ride”

  1. Bill Lambert Says:

    The bag looks great on your bike! I like the handlebar tape too!

  2. mike Says:

    nice! i had the boxy rando bag… eventually moved on from it.
    great luggage, and yours looks a bit more practical!

  3. Tim Says:

    I love the side trails. Like Louisville and your joint, I guess all these river towns have mysterious, path-laden areas. The jump area looked particularly, but indeed the LHT would be a bit questionable. Enjoy the bag. My RBW banana bag instructions are to put the buckles inside of the bag, and that was by far the best route. It gave a snugger fit without the extra slack.

  4. Jack Says:

    A great looking bag on a great looking bike. I like bags that attach with leather straps. They will last a long time and when they need to be replaced, no problem, just find any strap of about the same size. Not true of some plastic bracket specific to a bag that may have been discontinued for years.

    Thanks for sharing, Jack

  5. StrawboB Says:

    Hey, Jack. Thanks for the review on the Acorn bag. I, too, have been looking at them for quite a while. Tough to get them! Any additional comments on the bag since your review posted above?

    Thanks, and safe riding!

    boB

Ear to the Breeze is proudly powered by WordPress
Entries (RSS) and Comments (RSS).