This is a shameless attempt to save the the most advanced civilization in
history from imminent self destruction by eliminating carbon emission,
dependence on foreign sources of fuel,obesity, hypertension and diabetes.
Cycling accomplishes all those things at once and helps us develop a better
understanding of ourselves, each other and our relationship to the cosmos.

Oh, horse puckey!
I like to ride bikes, have been doing it all my life.
The rest of that crap is just a fringe benefit,
and the blogosphere gives me a chance to share my interior
monologue with virtual rather than imaginary friends.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Sackville Shopping Sacks

           One of the things I miss from my winter beater is the folding Wald Baskets.

 I could put $150 worth of groceries in them and make it home with very little inconvenience. While I like them, I didn't want them on Byron because I already had the very stylish VO Porteur rack, and the Nuvinci hub makes the bike a little butt heavy already.  I didn't want to add another 3 pounds of weight to the rear end (the folding baskets, with all the extra wires for the multiple joints, weigh a lot).  The dilemma was, exactly how to fit as much stuff on the bike so I didn't end up shopping every day (yes, guys shop for food).    The porteur rack will hold two reusable shopping bags side by side, but without the vertical support of the basket, things got a little dicey and I just couldn't carry as much.
      Last year I had bought one of Rivendell's Sackville shopping sacks and it worked out just fine, but was a little small ( I had tried the smaller of the two sizes to be on the safe side).  Since it had fit so comfortably in the porteur rack last year, I measured, remeasured, thought about it, talked myself out and into it, remeasured again and decided to try the larger size.  The big one is really, really big.  Bigger than most overnight bags I would use, bigger than any saddlebag I have seen and holds nearly as much as the backpack I use when hiking.

Since Byron is a metallic grey in color I decided to order the larger in grey.  I was a little apprehensive because the fabric was a poly-cotton blend rather than plain waxed cotton.  I was not disappointed the color is very stylish and the fabric every bit as sturdy, and (this is the important part) the bottom folds out perfectly flat and stable like the other one.

 The only hitch is the poly blend could hurt the aginghippieantipetrochemical sensitivities of some people.  In that case you're stuck with a very nice looking dark green one.  You can  see how much larger the large is, but the bottom is not much wider and that was what worried me.

The two fold together relatively flat and stay put on the rack when not in use,
but the really nice thing about these bags is their stability.  The bottoms are sewn with seams very carefully spaced to fold up when not in use and provide a very stable platform for the load without any other reinforcements.

Although the front bag looks like it's falling out all over the place, it's not, it is sitting very tightly on the rack without even using the attached clasps.  I threw the small on the back pletscher rack in the mousetrap and away we go with a whole bunch of stuff, no straps no bungees, just throw  'em on and go.  I like it.
   While the price tag of $40-50 for a shopping bag seems a little steep, I can see many other uses for these besides just grocery shopping.  Either will make a nice extra duffel when traveling and judging the workmanship, they will probably outlive me and my son.  I've certainly spent $90 in worse places.

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