Roswheel bags: Roswheel Tour Pannier Large review
Roswheel bags and in particular Roswheel Tour Pannier 40L (the pair) are one of the products that marked the entry into the world of bicycle travel of this Shanghai company. Roswheel has been producing accessories for bicycles for years and has recently launched the production of bags for classic bicycle touring and bikepacking. We have tried a few of these bags over the last year and what you find below is our review on the larger model of panniers.
By MTB and travel bike, with all types of terrain, from easy asphalt to single trails with rock.
- Roswheel bags: introducing the Tour Pannier Large
- Roswheel bags: a comprehensive review of the Roswheel Tour 40L panniers
- Materials and quality
- How to hook these Roswheel bags to the rack
- Roswheel bags: closure and front pocket
- Waterproof bags? Yes!
- Some more details about the Roswheel bags Tour 40L
- My last personal opinion
I admit it: when this Chinese company contacted us to offer us to use their bags and test them, I accepted a little superficially and very doubtfully. I knew some Roswheel bags and products and they were all very cheap but also, in reality, real "Chinese products". As soon as I received the bags, I immediately realized that instead, I was dealing with a completely different product from what I expected: more refined, more solid, and very promising in the fabric. I still had doubts about the seal and, above all, about the connection parts with the luggage racks: the attachments are made of rigid plastic and, at first glance, they appear rather fragile.
In general, however, I had already understood that Roswheel, with the new line of touring bike products, had made a significant leap in quality, passing from the sale of low-cost products of medium-low peculiarities to well-made travel accessories and always a super attractive price.
Roswheel bags: introducing the Tour Pannier Large
- Volume: 40L (per pair)
- 100% waterproof bag (nylon 420D and PU coating)
- Presence of a foam lining for greater protection in the lower part
- The roll closure with fixed straps anchored to the sidewalls of the bags
- Reflective elements on all sides of the bag
- Small external pocket with waterproof zipper
- Entirely heat-sealed structure
- "Lock-on" coupling system with adjustable hooks
- Weight: 1380g (per pair)
Roswheel bags: a comprehensive review of the Roswheel Tour 40L panniers
As mentioned, when I received the proposal to review these Roswheel bike bags, I was a bit skeptical and doubtful because I did not consider the Chinese company among those capable of making products that could be considered among the best bicycle touring panniers. However, I wanted to try the bags and today I can say that I absolutely changed my mind. I used the trunk bag for a whole year during our bike trip around Europe, our No Plans Journey, and the Roswheel Tour panniers (both 40L and 20L) in Sicily and on some weekend excursions in Italy during this last disastrous year marked by the pandemic.
Today I can only speak positively of all Roswheel bags and in particular of the 40L panniers, resistant and functional. But let's get to the point of this review and let's start talking about the material and workmanship of the bags.
Materials and quality
These panniers are made of a classic thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) coated, which guarantees excellent resistance to abrasion and at the same time is waterproof. I admit to being a sympathizer of Cordura or similar materials, but lately, I have been using polyester and TPU bags without having major wear problems.
At the bottom of the Roswheel bags, there is extra integrated foam protection. Together with the external part, the lower one is the most stressed side, especially when the bags are detached from the bicycle and therefore this insert was an excellent thought. The dark blue color combined with a checkered embossed pattern is great and gives elegance to the bags, while the presence of reflective inserts on all sides guarantees a minimum of visibility even in low light conditions. But be careful: these elements cannot be taken as an excuse to avoid using good bike lights.
All seams are heat-sealed to maintain the overall waterproofness of the bike pannier and the build quality, in general, is really good.
How to hook these Roswheel bags to the rack
The hooking system to the rack is more or less consolidated and Roswheel defines it as lock-on. It consists of a rail screwed to the shoulder of the bag on which two hooks are inserted that apply to the rack. Once in place, the pressure on two flaps of the hooks allows you to lower one side which will wrap the horizontal tube of the rack, blocking the bag. The two hooks can slide on the track, approaching or moving away according to the needs and specific dimensions of the rack on which we wish to install the bags. To fix them, just tighten the hexagonal head screw with an Allen key and stop them.
The big doubts I have about this system are mainly related to the material with which they are made: rigid plastic. So far I have not had any particular problems, but I have used the panniers for too little time to be able to give a definitive judgment on this system.
A convenient and different element compared to the Crosso bags (I love their simple metal hook system) is the way to remove the bags. The hook that wraps the top tube is joined to the strap that acts as a handle and you just have to lift the bag from the handle so that the closure opens and the bag comes off the rack easily.
Roswheel bags: closure and front pocket
The closure is always a discussed and important element in bike bags. The roll-top closure is by far the most used and even Roswheel has not moved away from this solution even if it has tried to introduce an element of novelty. In fact, there are no buckles that must be closed by folding the sides upwards on themselves. In this case, the closure is ensured, after having rolled up the two flaps of the opening, by means of straps that are pulled downwards on the sides of the bags. My initial doubts were completely dispelled while traveling, because this closure proved to be fast and comfortable, but above all effective.
It could create some problems in the case of half-empty panniers because the strap could reach the limit switch and not allow to have an extremely compact closure, but personally, it never happened to me even on weekends when the bags were not crammed to the limit.
A useful and alternative element compared to most of the panniers on the market is the presence of a small front pocket with a weatherproof zip also protected by an upper flap that protects it from the rain: I would not put loose banknotes in this pocket in the monsoons, but I would sleep quite peacefully by inserting technological objects (SD cards, for example) or a wallet.
Waterproof bags? Yes!
The Roswheel Tour 40L bike panniers (and also the 20L ones) are waterproof and I had the opportunity to thoroughly test them in Sicily under some truly remarkable showers this summer. The trunk (made of the same material and with a very similar closure) traveled with us for a year and endured everything from rain to snow, from mud to the scorching sun. It did its job very well protecting the drone inside it from bad weather.
Some more details about the Roswheel bags Tour 40L
- The capacity of the Roswheel Tour 40L bags is not huge for a pair of rear panniers, but they can be fine for short trips, summer trips, or for those with quality technical material to help save space.
- The aesthetics of these bags are very pleasant and certainly a point in favor of the product.
- In addition to the reflective inserts, there are attachments to fix rear lights
My last personal opinion
As already mentioned, I changed my opinion on the company's products after using the Tour panniers (in addition to the 40L and 20L pannier Tour there are the Trunk bag or top case, the handlebar bag used with satisfaction by Vero, and the tube bags for various measures). I will often use these bags in the future, especially for medium-short trips, alternating with the Crosso that I have been happy to own for more than 10 years.
Ultimately in my opinion the Roswheel bags, with their road and offroad bikepacking line, are excellent alternatives to more noble and expensive bags even if I fear they will be penalized by their distribution which in Europe is delegated to the English office.
- Stable and e resistant
- Good price/quality ratio
- Reflective inserts and the front pocket are interesting details
- The plastic hook to the rack gives the feeling of poor durability
- Only available online on an English site (possible customs tax issues)
- The 20l and 40l capacities are not among the most generous on the market
ITA - Ho 32 anni e sono piemontese, anche se da qualche anno vivo e lavoro in Lombardia. Dopo un inizio da totale inesperto in questo campo, mi sono avvicinato al mondo dei cicloviaggi e della bicicletta sempre più. Oggi posso definirmi "cicloviaggiatore", e assieme all'altra mia passione - il videomaking - non mi fermerei mai! Cyclo ergo sum, pedalo quindi sono, per cercare di capire perché andare in bici sia così bello, terapeutico, ricco... E ogni volta che provo a capirlo, non ce la faccio, e sono costretto a ripartire sui pedali!