Panniers – product review

When Velogear was having an Australia Day sale of some of its products, I thought this was a great chance to get a set of panniers, something I had been meaning to get for a while. I liked the look of the Italian Leather panniers and at $95, I thought they were a great price for what amounted to two leather briefcases, so I ordered them that day to take advantage of the great price.

This turned out to be a false economy for two reasons:

1. they later offered the panniers for the same price but with a rear rack thrown in as well, and

2. the panniers are not leather, they are some sort of vinyl or pleather

However, all that aside, I do like them and have decided to keep them, though I am disappointed that they will not get that lovely patina that leather develops over time. I chose the two toned ones, although there are four colours to choose from,  my second choice would be the black.

They fit on the rear rack of my Giant, which is just a modern standard rack, and do not need to be strapped on, though this is an option with the little straps at the back of the panniers:Although they look a little overdressed for this day at the swimming pool, they were perfect as they are lined with a shiny black lining which holds them in shape  and is waterproof and wipes clean easily:The cutaway shape on the right hand side in the pic above means that there is no heel strike when they are on the bike. The insignias look good, I think, the Italian flag colours are embroidered while the black label is a clear plastic. They look neat and classy and stand up on their own, with the handle providing a handy carrying solution off the bike:The only thing I could suggest would improve the bikeability of these panniers is that they have reflective tape on them, in fact I might add some to them myself. I have not yet used them in the rain, they look as if they would resist light rain and while the tops of them would almost certainly let in moisture if it were raining very heavily, the seams all look well stitched and water resistant.

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4 Responses to Panniers – product review

  1. adventurepdx says:

    They look nice. It is a shame that they aren’t leather (and you didn’t get the rack), but full-leather bags at that price would be insanely cheap. If it were me, I might complain about the fact that they were advertised as leather but obviously not.

    • Vicki says:

      You are right, I should have done that, but it is probably too late now. It actually took me a while to realise they were not leather as I didn’t look closely at them for signs of them not being leather, at first.

  2. Crystal says:

    If they were real leather they wouldnt be waterproof. Real leather is porous which would soak up water and oil, They make out of Italian leatherette…leatherette is fake but repels water and stains because leatherette is made from plastic…plastic is not porous.

  3. Crystal says:

    One more thing is leatherette is far easier to take care of vs real leather. Leather has to be conditioned regularly if constant use to keep from cracking. Not to mention leather tends to be thinner then leatherette making it suseptible to tears and becoming droopy because leather does stretch so if u put something heavy in it evnetually it will lose its out of the box shape.

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