A short list of features includes an adjustable, aluminum mounting bracket (no plastic parts to break), removable inner liner, waterproof removable map case, shoulder strap, and a storage pocket for the carrying strap. This bag has a neat and well-defined box shape that makes it perfect for carrying everything from a wallet to a six-pack - without showing it! Two beautifully sculpted clamps are the heart of the handlebar attachment system. They're made of 6061-T6 aluminum, which makes them the stiffest and lightest available today. The glide in plates at the back of the handlebar bag are made of smooth stainless steel. The mating of the bag to the clamps, by sliding the bag on the clamps from the top, creates a rattle-free fit.
This is indeed a very large handlebar bag. The main compartment alone has plenty of space for a camera, a lunch, and just about anything else you might want to have quick access to. In addition, there is a large pocket on the front, and the lid itself is a substantial pocket. The downside of all this space is there is a tendency to overload the handlebar bag if you are not careful.
The main compartment is very easily accessible, since it has a two-way zipper that runs around three sides, and most of the way around the front side. If the main compartment isn't too full, you can often leave the lid unzipped for quick access. The lid is rigid and had a little mass to it, so it will stay in place and keep the main compartment covered.
The top of the bag is a large plastic flap attached at one edge and with velcro on the other. There is plenty of space under the flap for a full size sheet of paper, and of course smaller items like an ACA map panel or a cue sheet. The flap keeps things in place and gives a moderate amount of protection from moisture. If you need even more rain protection, the bag comes with a transparent waterproof zipper pouch that you can slip your maps into before securing them under the flap.
The best feature of this bag is the attachment mechanism. The hardware on the bike consists of two attractive aluminum brackets with shims to clamp on most common handlebar diameters. The brackets are fairly narrow, so they don't consume much handlebar space. And since the matching clip plates on the bag adjust from a 1" spread to a 4" spread, you have a lot of flexibility regarding where to mount the clips on your handlebars. Extra clamps are available in case you want to use your bag on multiple bikes.
To mount the bag, simply line up the clips, and slide down until the bag clicks securely in place. To remove, simply press the releases on the clip plates and pull up. When carrying the bag off the bike, there's a shoulder strap, and there is an integrated cover for the clip plates.
If you are looking for a large, well designed handlebar bag, I highly recommend this one.
Anonymous on 8/25/09
Way too heavy in my opinion. Over engineered, too heavy, over priced. If you want or need all the bells and whistles it has them!
Arkel Bigg Bag
A customer from Clintonville, Ohio on 11/5/09
This handlebar bag is not big, it is huge. Something in the middle range would be better.
There are no pockets in the main compartment. Trying to organize such a huge space is hard enough. Having no side pockets to hold wallet, cell phone, keys, notebook, etc. is just poor planing.
Bryan Signorelli on 10/5/10
Some will complain this bag is too big (it's the large version, duh!) or too heavy but it'll hold whatever you need it to. My dSLR fits in the main compartment perfectly. The lid pocket is a great place for keys, wallet and notebook.
The mesh side pockets hold smaller stuff like a bar, sunscreen, lip balm, etc. The front pocket has enough room to hold a wrench, seat cover, rain cover for the handlebar bag itself, etc.
The "secret" pocket is a great way to hold the shoulder strap AND it'll hold a Click-Stand at the same time.
I think the smaller size is probably more useful to more people (it's the same size as my wifes medium Ortleib handlebar bag) but if you need some additional room this bag is for you.
The mounting system is top notch and easy to use and doesn't feature an ugly key/lock!
Arkel Large Handlebar Bag
J. Bradley on 6/7/11
Great bag, great mount. It holds more and weighs less than I expected it to. The main compartment is easy to access while riding. It adds little enough weight that I have been leaving it on even during races. (Admittedly, I'm not overly competitive.) I like the zip out lining--it is easy to clean out.
A customer from Upstate New York on 11/3/11
Easy on off ,top quality great company to deal with .