Marsee Tank Bags
You've been to the dealership. You've filled out the paperwork. Now it's sitting in your garage: A brand new Suzumawanda GXBRZ-15000, the fastest, lightest, most technologically advanced super-sport-race-rep crotch-mounted two-wheeled transport ever manufactured. Owning this bike makes you a better person. It makes you faster. The opposite sex finds you more attractive and comments on your brilliance and overall suitability for reproduction. What more could you ask for?
Carrying space. Besides rifling your high-powered piston pony through the canyons you may want to tote, say, a sweater for the ride home at night, or some lotion for when your tender hands get a little flaky from the dry, crisp Malibu air. A good magnetic tank bag is the ticket, something that mounts securely but can be removed quickly, and won't mar that beautiful three-color finish that ever-so-smartly sets off the brash, daring Suzumawanda logo. Marsee has a couple of offerings that just might fit the bill and they sent 'em along for some serious, no compromises testing.
Fact is, sometimes a sweater -- or that bottle of lotion for you tender types -- is the only thing you want to pack and no more carrying space is required. We grew to depend on the Marsee 10-Liter Rocket Pocket for just those occasions. At first glance it seems like you won't be able to stuff too much into the 3.5-inch high compartment, but it's surprising how much will easily go in without having to expand the bag. Our evaluator regularly carries the following, no expansion necessary:
Cell phone E-mail pager Palm Pilot Xena Disc Lock (the big yellow thing that yelps when you forget to take it off) Wallet Bungee net Sunglasses (bad for splitting lanes at night) Cool leather cap with Harley-Davidson logo (Official Licensed Product, thank you) Little package of Zantac (test editor is now in his thirties and can no longer inhale jalapeño-laden burritos with brazen impunity)
Decide that you need to take along a little something extra, like your girlfriend's cat for a special fun-ride? No problem. Just undo the large zipper that runs around the perimeter of the bag, pull gently and you've got the full ten liters (actual capacity not determined). Now you've got plenty of room to add a layer of cardboard to protect your special things, throw in some nails, a pile of broken glass, some rare scorpions and finally, little honey-bunney-pwetty-kitty that likes to draw cute pictures with its claws on your $600 leather jacket. Nothing a 100-mile enduro ride can't fix.
Ahem. Truthfully, with the bag fully expanded, adding a warm garment is easy. The Rocket Pocket solves a host of storage problems and will be the most tank bag that many riders, weekend canyon carvers especially, will ever need.
Sometimes however, especially for some longer-distance commuters or sport-touring types, it's necessary to toss the kitchen sink in along with the less bulky items. Marsee also sent along their 30-Liter Economy Tank Bag for just those situations.
You can almost pack too much in a bag this large, threatening to overweight the tankbag when fully extended, but after nine months of constant usage there's never been a problem, the magnets in both of the Marsee tank bags sucking down on a metal tank with the strength of a White House intern. Obviously, that's an exaggeration, but they are strong enough to bolster confidence, keeping your attention on the hairpin turn you're negotiating rather than the tankbag that's engorged with Grandma's heirloom quilt.
Riding piggyback on one end of the 30-Liter bag is a small, detachable pack designed to carry smaller items that you might not want to leave behind. The extra pack is clever and useful at times, affixing to your belt easily.
Otherwise it's almost pointless to illustrate the carrying capacity. If you need to carry enough to need a huge tankbag, then you know who you are. What sets the Marsee bags apart is the host of detailed features. The zippers are large, easy-to-use, durable items that operate easily. The black material for the bags is tough and looks great after months of constant commuting through Los Angeles smog. Reflective strips on the sides of the bags are standard issue.
Carrying handles are also standard items on both bags, and the 30-Liter comes with a handy shoulder strap in addition to the belt pack. With the large bag extended, the load can be tightened down by cinching up compression cords that run around the compartment on the exterior, and a side-mounted hook-and-loop strip is a useful place to keep gloves when you're at a rest stop. Of special note is the fact that neither tank bags have scratched the finish on any test bikes with which the staff has been charged. Very nice.
Finally, it's worth pointing out that Marsee also offers accessories for their line of storage products. You can replace lost or worn-out shoulder straps or zipper pulls (convenient items), or even add a pocket or pad to the shoulder strap. Also, these bags aren't waterproof, so you might want the optional rain cover.
Negatives? Not many. These are great products that will serve, but they ain't cheap. The Rocket Pocket comes in at $80 and the 30-Liter Economy Magnetic at $140. Considering that they show such little wear after constant usage, however, we still recommend you take a hard look when shopping for a storage option. Keep in mind, also, that these bags are also available in a quick-release, non-magnetic design. Nice stuff, four-and-a-half stars.
Contact Marsee Products at (800) 293-2400 or check out their Web site at Marsee Tank or Seat Bag
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