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Rackless carrying systems are starting to become the norm these days, part of me considers them to be one of the things that divides bikepacking from touring. Frame bags often form the heart or foundation of many rackless set ups, so it didn’t come as too much of a surprise when AlpKit launched theirs. What did come as a slight surprise was the fact that the frame bags would be ‘custom’ rather than a generic ‘one size fits most’ affair.

The term ‘custom’ might mean many things to many people. AlpKit haven’t gone as far as some with the definition of the word but I imagine most folk will be more than happy with the available options. Firstly and quite obviously, the bags are made to fit your specific frame. This involves taping some card to your frame and with your best crayoning skills tracing the outline of your main triangle, not forgetting to mark things like cable stops, etc … you order your bag on-line but post AlpKit your template. When you place your order you can choose your bags configuration, ie, one big compartment or split with an internal divider, there’s also the option of a ‘map’ pocket too. Next comes the width, don’t be tempted to go mad here … you really don’t need your legs rubbing the bag. The last things to decide are the colours, choose either a red or black bag, then decide on the stitching colour (there’s lots) and last but not least pick a colour for the lining – simple.
Remember, the bigger your frame the more room you’ll have for butties!

This bag doesn’t have any bells and whistles, it’s a single compartment with no ‘map’ pocket. However, I’m informed that the stitching is ‘Lego blue’ which nicely matches my frame. One thing I did deliberately pick was a yellow lining to help lighten the inside and make it a little easier to find things when I’m deep in the woods.

Yellow lining by AlpKit … stains by me.

So far the bag’s accompanied me on three trips and has done everything asked of it without complaint … I’ll report back when it’s got more miles under its belt but so far so good.

Prices start at £65 and you can order your very own bag HERE

One Comment

  1. Anonymous says:

    I've done my own wee review at my blog. Cracking value I reckon.

    http://mcalisterium.wordpress.com/2012/07/29/alpkit-stingray-framebag/

Comments are closed.

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