I received my new Tangle Bag from Revelate Designs this past weekend. Revelate is a small one man company in Anchorage, Alaska specializing in bikepacking bags and accessories.
Some people would argue he is the “go to guy” for custom bags. I wanted something that would allow access to gear and food while riding, but didn’t mean I had to load up my jersey pockets. I also did not want to go with the full blown frame bag as I feel it takes away too much from what I want to use this bike for. I have read rave reviews about the frame bags, but at this time it just isn’t for me. Instead, after about 3-4 months of “research” I decided on the sized small Tangle Bag. It meets my desire for more storage, but still allows the use of all my water bottles.
When I opened the USPS package, I was pretty impressed with the quality of the bag. Very professional looking and nice tight stitching and heavy duty fabric. This thing looks like it is going to take a beating and keep on working.
It took less than 2 minutes to get the bag installed on the Fargo. Revelate uses some pretty heavy duty velcro straps to mount to the top tube and seat tube. It actually took me quite an amount of effort to pull the velcro straps apart after opening the packaging. I fell that bodes well for how well this sucker will stay put on the frame. I’m not concerned about weak velcro at all.
Two down tube straps, near the head tube, guarantee that the bag should not drift side to side or back and forth along the top tube.
Being short, my biggest concern was being able to fit in 2 water bottles. I did not want to lose the ability to carry 4 water bottles on the frame/fork, but I did not want to squish the bag so much it’s carrying capacity was diminished.
On my longer trips I carry two large water bottles (about 24 oz size) on the fork mounted bottle cages and then two “normal” sized bottles within the frame. My two frame mounted bottles seem to fit well, and did not mess around too much with how much the bag would fit. That made me really happy.
The left side of the bag has a full length zipper that allows access to a compartment that would be perfect for maps or other goods that you need to carry, but are not bulky. Think items like cash, I.D., spork, or other flat small items. They would fit nicely on the left hand side of the bag.
From the right hand side of the bag, you again have a full length zipper that allows access to a much larger
compartment. You could fit a hydration bladder in here, the bag has a tube port that exits the top front of the main compartment. However, I think that for my needs this space is going to be best used to store, bars, gels, camera, knife, wallet, phone, etc.
I have not stuffed it with items yet to see how much it will hold, but it will be significantly more than the 3 rear pockets on my jerseys. It will be a nice bonus to have quick access to my wallet when I stop at stores for snacks and liquid refills.
I look forward to testing this thing out soon. I have a 2-3 night trip in the works and I should be able to post a follow up on how the bag performs.