Saturday, April 30, 2011

I spoil myself again

I bought myself a natty Gilles Berthoud handlebar bag as a birthday present last week to match the little panniers I bought a while back. (Bless the strong Australian dollar and Internet shopping.) After using a handlebar bag so successfully on my tour last year I decided I'd spend the money to buy a bag which would enable me to stash things like arm warmers and beanies while on the go and having easy access to snacks and camera et cetera. I was keen on the Berthoud because it sits low - below the level of the handlebar - unlike the Topeak bag I was using.

The Berthoud bag hasn't disappointed: it looks a million dollars and sits nicely on my Nitto front rack. It is certainly commodious. I did have to relocate my headlight onto the rack, but that was no big deal.

I have a a cold at the moment and I'm unable to ride beyond short jaunts up and down the driveway. Perhaps tomorrow I'll take if for a test on the rough roads between here and town. The only drawback with such a nice piece of kit is that all that French elegance makes the Crosscheck look a little shabby. Perhaps a new frame is in order. With the Australian dollar doing so well, it's certainly being considered.

8 comments:

Grant said...

My MC wishes you hadn't poster that.

The Velo Hobo said...

I've never regreted buying my 'big-boxy-bag'. It's the most usefull piece of bike equipment I have. Great for touring. Great for picnicing. Great for carrying a growler of beer home from the local brewery.

cheers, Jack

Melbourne Randonneur said...

Well done Dave. Looks great.

I was having a similar image problem with my Salsa Casserol so I went for the Rando Build Kit. There's the result https://picasaweb.google.com/gareth.d.evans/Bikes#5548938517570434994

Terrific value for money. But I'd upgrade the head set to a roller bearing like the Miche. The Grand Cru wasn't that good and the roller bearings should help prevent any shimmy.

Surly Dave said...

Yes, I'm looking at the Rando build kit pretty seriously and have drooled over your photos before. Seems a nice piece of kit for the riding I do. Did you like it? It was either that or a Thorn Audax. Decisions, decisions.

Melbourne Randonneur said...

Chose the Velo Orange as I was specifically looking for something that had the mounts for a front rack to support the handlebar bag.

Its was great value for money, especially with the current exchange rate. There are alternative off the peg frames, but not at the same cost.

Boulder Bicycles/Rene Herse are worth a look. I'm very happy with my All Roads 650b.

Surly Dave said...

I'm pretty keen to buy while the dollar is good. I reckon I'll pull the trigger in the next month or so. Hopefully. I'm keen on it for the same reasons - plus better fender line and I want to switch from canti's to caliper brakes. It seems a nice enough design.

Jan Heine said...

Dave, you need a 650b Alex Singer frame. It will plane on the dirt roads. Love, Jan.

Surly Dave said...

My problem is that a bike which planes on dirt, might not plane on sealed road and vice versa. I suspect I'm going to need a dirt-planer and a tar-planer. But its hard to argue with the growing trend to 650B.