To my mind top tube bags come in two styles, the larger that complement a full bike packing rig and those that are ideal for the day rider. The former large bag gains its extra volume from being tall, long or both. Ideal for storing power packs, cameras and things that you need quickly on a long trip. The latter replaces the need to over stuff your back pockets with money/cards, phone, multi tool and gels/ bars. In fact the origin of this type of bag owes a lot to triathlons where they are used to enable riders to reach an energy bar or two while maintaining an aerodynamic position.
In 2021 I’ve used it for another type of essential, namely a pandemic kit. the bag easily fits a mask, hand gel, keys, a multi tool and the aforementioned energy bars. I’ve also had a Pixel 3 phone in a protective case in it, That fitted diagonally from one bottom edge to the other top edge. With the phone inside careful packing meant keys, mask and food could also fit in.
The bag is a dual mount one. if your frame has bolt on mounts then the neatest way to fit it is to bolt it on and there are then no straps around the frame tube. a small velcro strap goes around the steerer to further stabilise the bag, not that it’s unstable with out it. In fact out of all the top tube bags i’ve used this was the most stable of them all. The material is quite stiff which aids the stability but of course this stiffness does mean it’s difficult to push that little bit of extra kit in the bag as it doesn’t stretch much.
The annoying thing I’ve found with strap on or taller bags is that they tend to flop around or end up leaning one way or the other even after careful loading. The RideFarr Aero bag does not do this. You can climb out of the saddle without your knees catching the sides-another annoying trait of other bags.
The zip is robust and you can easily open and close the bag while riding. making on the bike snacking a breeze, I’ve been caught in a few down pours while using it and the contents have stayed bone dry. The bag bolts onto the frame through a thin strip of plastic, this plastic is my only gripe with the bag though because if you put anything hard in the bag such as keys or the hand gel bottle in the picture then over rough ground it will rattle and knock about. easily avoided by wrapping the keys etc in something soft but a little padding on this strip would be well worth the few extra grams it would cause.
The bag does come with 3 velcro straps that work well even on a skinny steel frame, minimizing any flop but it would be well worth fitting something like the 76 projects Anti Strap System (also on test with review coming soon) The Farr Bag is 210x75x57mm so doesn’t stick out and look odd on a steel frame. On a wider aluminium or carbon frame it looks like is was made to measure and sleek.
The Farr Aero top tube bag is a great alternative to loading your pockets with stuff on a quick ride out or a day ride in good weather where you don’t need to take a gilet or jacket. Pair it with a bar bag and you could carry everything you need for a long day in the saddle in all types of weather.
For me though the ultimate thing is that it is unobtrusive, stays put without flopping from side to side, is tough (I may have taken a few tumbles while it was on the bike!) and wipes clean. Quite frankly It’s my favourite top tube bag I’ve ever had and I’ve got or tried quite a few and it’s definitely staying on my bike!
you can find more details on the Farr top tube bag here and if you buy any Farr product from the UK website Ridefarr.co.uk and use the discount code “UKGRAVELCO” the lovely guys at the UK distributor will give you a 10% discount!
As with all my tests, this is an impartial and real world review. I’m not sponsored and I’m just an average rider like most of the cyclists out there. I do inform anyone who sends me things to test that It will be an honest review good or bad.