Rapha bar bag is stylish, spacious, durable, and well-made. It also can be converted into a shoulder bag and has light clips as an add-on. The main drawback is that it is not waterproof.
product and testing details:
Tired of overstuffing my cycling jersey pockets and stretching them out, I set out on a quest to find an alternative storage solution for my bike. This is where the Rapha Bar Bag comes to the rescue!
When choosing a handlebar bag, I had three main requirements:
- Size: Not a large bag since I don’t plan to carry a lot of cargo.
- Quality: The bag has to be durable and should last for years.
- Look: How it looks on my bike is very important.
After extensive research, Rapha seemed to tick all the boxes for me, so I decided to give it a go. Finally, after using it for a few months, I am ready to share my through in this extensive review.
Size & Volume
The Bar Bag is the perfect size for road cyclists looking for a compact handlebar bag. It’s not too big and not too small, making it just right for storing extra food, lightweight clothing, and other essentials you might need on a ride.
The volume or capacity of this bag is 2L | 122 cu. in. For me, this size is ideal, and anything larger would not suit my riding style and storage needs.
Therefore, scoring it 10/10 for size and volume.
The Rapha Bar Bag has 2 main compartments: one large and one small at the front of the bag. The large compartment is big enough to fit energy bars, phones, wallets, keys, and other small items.
The smaller pocket is just an extra space where you can store a shoulder strap (included with this bag) or anything else that did not fit into a larger compartment.
Inside the bag, there are two small pockets that you can use to separate items from one another. They are ideal for storing small items like keys or money.
Overall, I am happy with the structure of this bag and its compartments. Scoring it 10/10.
The Rapha Bar Bag attaches to a bike with the help of three straps: two that go around the handlebars and one that goes under the stem.
There is an additional strap on a side that I assume can be used to attach the bag to a seat post and convert it into a frame one. However, I haven’t tried it as I am afraid of damaging my carbon frame.
Overall attachment system seems excellent! The straps are secure and don’t get loose, even when riding on bumpy roads. Also, you can easily adjust the length of the straps to fit your bike perfectly. Unfortunately, it’s hard to perfectly attach this bag to my bike because of all the cables, but that issue lies with my bike’s design and not Rapha. You might experience the same problems, however.
Beware that a carbon stem can get damaged by a plastic buckle. I would recommend using a special protective tape in this case.
I’m also pleased with how well the Rapha Bar Bag performs on rough roads and uneven terrain. There’s minimal bouncing, and the attachment system is holding up really well!
Overall, I am pleased with the attachment system and score it 10/10.
Now, this is where the Rapha Bar Bag falls short. It is NOT waterproof, but only water-resistant. So, if you are caught in a sudden rainstorm, the inside of the bag will be completely wet.
This is precisely what happened to me on one of my rides. I was caught in sudden rain, and the stuff packed inside the bag got wet. Fortunately, I had nothing valuable on me (besides food). If you want to keep your phone, money, wallet, or other valuables dry, I recommend using a zipped plastic bag.
This is why giving it 6/10 for waterproofness.
Look & Style
The Rapha Bar Bag has a simple and elegant design. It is available in two colors: black and yellow. I went with the black one as it goes well with any bike color.
The high-quality materials give it a luxurious and premium appearance.
Overall, I think Rapha did a great job with the design and style of this handlebar bag. This is why scoring it 10/10 for look and style.
1. The bar bag can be converted into a shoulder bag, which is excellent for carrying your belongings off the bike.
2. The bag has a few light loops at the front, perfect for attaching front bike lights (nice touch).
Overall, these are the things I liked about the Rapha Bar Bag:
The 2L | 122 cu. in. volume is just perfect for carrying essentials without being too bulky.
There are two compartments to keep your stuff organized and separated inside the bag. One has two pockets, which is excellent for compartmentalizing and keeping items separate.
I really like the quality of the straps and buckles. They are easily adjustable and don’t get loose on rough roads.
The light loops on this bag are a nice touch for cycling at night.
The bag is made of high-quality materials, so I expect it to last for years.
I think this bag looks stylish with a clean and sleek design.
This bag can be easily converted into a shoulder bag, making it perfect for carrying your belongings when you’re not on the bike.
What I did not like about Rapha Bar Bag:
The bag is not waterproof, so your belongings will get wet if you are caught in the rain.
The plastic buckles can damage carbon stems.
Overall, I’m pleased with the Rapha Bar Bag. It’s ideal for road cyclists who need extra storage space but also care about style and looks. The quality is excellent, and the bag seems very durable. The only downside is that it’s not waterproof. I would recommend using a ziplock bag to keep your valuables dry.
Frequently asked questions:
1. Who is this bag for?
This bag is perfect for road cyclists needing extra space for bikepacking adventures, longer weekend rides, or commuting.
I personally use it on weekends when I go for longer rides and want to take extra stuff with me. I also pack a rain jacket, leg and arm warmers, and additional winter gloves.
2. What is a great alternative to the Rapha Bar Bag?
3. What is a burrito bag?
The burrito bag is a handlebar bag that resembles a burrito in form. These bags are ideal for storing essential items like your phone, wallet, or keys. They are small and typically have a zipper closure.
4. How do I attach a Rapha bar bag to my bike?
This bag has two straps that attach to your handlebars and one buckle strap that attaches to your stem. Attaching is super easy and straightforward. Initially, you will need to spend some time adjusting the straps to get a snug and secure fit. However, once the straps are adjusted, attaching and removing the bag will take seconds.
5. How much does the Rapha Bar Bag weigh?
The total bag weight (with a shoulder strap) is 255g or 0.56lb. Without the shoulder strap, the weight is 167.5g or 0.36lb.
6. Is the Rapha Bar Bag waterproof?
No, the Rapha Bar Bag is not waterproof. However, it is made of water-resistant fabric, so your belongings will stay relatively dry in light rain. I would recommend using a ziplock bag to keep your valuables dry if you want to be sure.
7. How do I care for the Rapha Bar Bag?
This bag should be cleaned with a damp cloth. Do not machine wash or dry clean.