Chain Reaction Pro Bike Bag Review
Find out if the Chain Reaction Cycle Pro Bike Bag is the right bag for you. Traveling with your bike can be a daunting task but this moderately-priced bag makes traveling with your bike a little bit easier.
Why Choose a Bike Bag Over a Bike Box
The answer is quite simple: Convenience and durability. Bike boxes are not a bad option, but they are definitely harder to pack and cumbersome to move around. For bigger riders, it can be hard to find a bike box big enough for your bike. I usually ride XL frames and finding a box is not as simple as going to a bike shop and asking for a free box. Purpose-built bike bags can be expensive, but they provide conveniences like burly carrying handles that don’t cut into your hand, and they have these amazing things called…. wheels!
Enter the Chain Reaction Cycles Pro Bike Bag. An affordable option to the bike air travel conundrum.
Chain Reaction Pro Bike Bag Main Features
Let’s start with the important features. Chain Reaction’s marketing material states that this bag was designed to fit their pro team downhill bikes, and I believe them. The Pro Bike Bag is roomy. Like I mentioned before, I ride XL frames, and I have no issues fitting my bikes inside the bag.
Several loops and velcro straps make it easy to secure your bike to the bag. This is a good thing since you want to get a snug fit so the bike doesn’t wobble inside the bag (more on this in a little bit).
Another great feature is that this bag comes with many spacers to protect your frame from being crushed inside the bag. The spacers also serve as sturdy attachment points. It’s worth noting that boost spacers are not currently provided with the bag.
Funny that the 130mm spacer fit my 135mm-spaced Salsa Fargo just fine. This might explain why I always have a little bit of a hard time sliding the back wheel into the dropouts. I’m glad the bag comes with different spacer sizes. The dedicated pockets make it easy to store the spacers when not in use. I do remove all the spacers from the bag to make it a little bit lighter; there’s no need to have all the spacers inside the bag during transport.
In addition to the many attachment points, the Pro Bike Bag has two wheel pockets. These pockets are reinforced with a hard plastic so the axels don’t damage the bag or scratch the bike. This is a very well thought out design. I was able to fit 29 x 2.3 tires in the wheel pockets.
I’m happy to report that 27.5+ tires fit in the side wheel pockets. Unfortunately, I don’t have any 29+ tires to test.
The bag is equipped with burly handles in the front, back, and sides. The side handles make it easier to lift the bag when you need to load it into a car trunk or the belly compartment of a bus.
The rolling wheels are probably the most convenient features this Pro Bike Bag has. I just wish the wheelbase was a little wider like I have seen on some other bags. During my recent trip to Germany, TSA opened the bag and removed some of the straps that were securing the bike to the bag, making the whole bag a little wobbly. If the wheels were placed farther apart, this bag would be a lot more stable. I also wish Chain Reaction Pro Bike Bag designers would have placed the front carrying handle (used to roll the bag around) a little higher to provide more stability while using the rolling wheels.
|SIZE||1400mm x 280mm x 790mm|
Pros x Cons
- Affordable: Usually priced well below $300 dollars and includes free shipping to many countries.
- Sturdy construction: Good choice of materials. I appreciate the blue fabric in the interior of the bag, providing a nice contrast.
- Strap Galore: No shortage of attachment points, making it easy to secure the bike to the bag.
- Narrow wheelbase: A wider wheelbase would provide more stability when wheeling the bag around.
- Storage: When not in use, the bag folds down to a smaller size, but not as neatly as other pricier bags.
The Chain Reaction Pro Bike Bag is an affordable option to those looking for a more convenient way to travel with a bike. Even though this bag costs less than its competitors’ offerings, it is just as well-built and has some of the same features as pricier options. My only real complaint about this bag is that the wheelbase is a little narrow when compared to other more expensive bags. Premium features come at a premium price though.
I paid for this bag with my own hard-owned money. I would 100% recommend this bag to a friend looking for an affordable, yet well-built, bike bag.