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Topeak Dual Touch Bicycle Storage Stand

It is amazing how much room a bicycle can take up in your garage or family room—and three or four bikes can take up half of a two-car garage. If you are looking for one of the most space-efficient ways to store your bikes I would strongly suggest you check out the Topeak Dual Touch Bike Storage Stand.

Topeak Dual Touch Bicycle Storage Stand

Topeak Dual Touch Bicycle Storage Stand In My Garage

Five or six years ago my bike collection started growing and I was having trouble find a place to store my bikes in a way that would keep them easily accessible. After talking with the folks at the local bike shop I settled on the Topeak Dual Touch Bike Storage Stand and it works perfectly as my main storage rack (I have a couple other storage racks as well). As you can see in the photo above, I use my Dual Touch Stand in my garage and it almost serves as a wall between my bike repair area and the rest of the garage (we have a two-car garage but half of it is used for bicycle storage and my own private bike repair shop).

Topeak Dual Touch Bike Storage Rack

Topeak Dual Touch Bicycle Stand

The Dual Touch Stand consists of two interlocking tubes with a quick release locking stepper foot at the bottom that secures the stand in place—these tubes will expand to reach a ceiling up to 10.5 feet high. This unit comes with two bike mounts that offer up to 30 degrees of adjustment to fit bikes with sloping-up top tubes (you can add two more mounts for additional bikes). This stand can hold 39 pounds per bike mount and up to 158 pounds per stand.

This stand needs a solid floor and ceiling for it to work properly—if either end flexes very much there is the possibility the unit could tilt (or even fall). If you are going to use this stand inside your house on a carpeted floor I would strongly suggest you put a 2″x2″ piece of plywood under the stand. Also, if you have a drywall ceiling the top of the pole needs to be situated directly under a stud (use an electronic stud finder if you are not certain about the location).

The Topeak Dual Touch Bike Storage Stand with two bike mounts retails for $200, but you can find it on Amazon.com for under $140. I bought mine at the local bike shop which means I paid a bit more than I would have from Amazon.com, but I like to try to support the local shop when possible.

 

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Topeak Wedge DryBag Waterproof Saddle Bag

You might not carry a lot in your saddle bag, but I imagine that whatever you do carry you would like to keep dry. I ride in all weather conditions and that means I spend more than my fair share of time cycling in the rain. Most seat bags will keep their contents dry during a light shower, but very few bags are really waterproof. A few months ago I put a Topeak Wedge DryBag waterproof saddle bag on the bike I use to ride in the rain and my opinion of this bag can be summed up in one word: Awesome!

Topeak Wedge DryBag Waterproof Seat Bag

Topeak Wedge DryBag Waterproof Saddle Bag

The Topeak Wedge DryBag is constructed from 210 denier and 420 denier nylon waterproof fabric and has sonically welded seams to keep the rain out. Not only does this bag keep the rain out, but it is incredibly easy to clean up. I sometimes ride off-road trails during rainstorms and the knobby tires on my mountain bikes kick up a lot of mud. Washing muddy clothes is pretty easy (I have a great wife), but getting the mud off most saddle bags is nearly impossible. If your Topeak Wedge DryBag gets muddy you can clean it off with a water hose as you are rinsing off your bike (you don’t even have to take it off your bike).

Review View Of The Topeak Wedge DryBag

Roll Closure On The Topeak Wedge DryBag

The zippers on most seat bags allow water to seep into your bag and they also get clogged up by mud. Instead of zippers the Topeak Wedge DryBag uses a roll closure with a Velcro strip, and after the flaps are rolled up the bag is secured with a buckle on both sides. Topeak offers this bag with two different mounting styles: nylon straps that wrap around your seat rails or Topeak’s QuickClick™ System that makes it easier to attach or remove the bag. The rear flap on the bag has a clip so you can attach your favorite taillight.

The DryBag comes in three different sizes. The smallest bag has a 36 cubic inch (.6 L) storage capacity; the medium bag has 61 ci (1 L) capacity; the large bag has 91.5 ci (1.5 L) of interior space.

The Topeak Wedge DryBag is available at most bicycle shops and retails for between $40 to $50, depending on the size and mounting style. This product also comes with a limited 2-year warranty against manufacturer defects (keep your receipt).

 

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Topeak Aero Wedge Pack Saddle Bag

Under normal circumstances I am a cycling minimalist, i.e., I don’t carry much with me on a ride except for a small bicycle mini-tool, tire boot, a can of compressed air and a spare tube. However, I had to make some adjustments a few months ago when I bought a Surly Necromancer Pugsley and had a Shimano Alfine 8-Speed Internal Geared Hub installed on it. The Pugsley in an awesome Fat Bike, but a spare 26 x 4.0 inner tube is enormous and will not fit in a standard bicycle saddle bag. In addition, the Alfine hub pretty much demands that you carry a pair of needle nose pliers with you for when have to remove the rear tire to fix a flat. Because the Alfine hub is only available as a bolt-on (no skewer) you also have to carry a short 15mm box wrench! It took me a while to find a seat bag that would hold everything I need, but the Topeak Aero Wedge Pack Saddle Bag holds all I need and has room to spare (it is an expandable bag).

Topeak Aero Wedge Pack Seat Bag

Topeak Aero Wedge Pack Saddle Bag

The large Topeak Aero Wedge Pack Saddle Bag is made of 1200 Denier Polyester with a Dupont Teflon coating and has an internal storage capacity of 90–120 cubit inches (this bag is also available in two smaller sizes as well). The bag measures 9.1″ x 5.1″ x 5.5″ and weighs just under six ounces. You attach this bag to the rails of your saddle with two nylon straps that have fast release buckles—there is also a Velcro strap that wraps around your seat post. The back flap on this bag has a slot so you can clip on a taillight, and above the slot is a large 3M reflective strip (one of the largest you will find on a seat bag).

Topeak Aero Wedge Pack in mud and snow

Topeak Aero Wedge Pack Covered With Mud

I used this bag all winter and it held up well to snow and ice. However, I did have a problem once the snow on the trails turned into mud. My Pugsley has very wide knobby tires (Surly Nates) and they kick up so much mud that words defy description (see photo above). While the mud washed off the bag fairly quickly, the zippers were so clogged up that I could not get the bag open. Even after several thorough cleanings with soapy water and brushes the zippers still won’t work smoothly, and I can’t find any sort of lubricant that helps. Therefore, while I would highly recommend this saddle bag for most conditions, if you ride on muddy trails you really need to either find a different saddle bag or at least wrap this on up with something like Saran Wrap. At the moment I am testing a Topeak Wedge DryBag, but have not used it enough to offer an opinion on it yet.

The Topeak Aero Wedge Pack Saddle Bag retails for $28 and should be available at your local bike shop.

 

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Topeak Alien II 26-Function Bicycle Tool

My last product review was for the ultra-lightweight Topeak Mini 9 Pro Multitool. Today I want to go the other end of the scale and look at the Topeak Alien II 26-Function Bicycle Tool. I don’t carry the Alien II with me when I’m on my road bikes, but when riding one of my mountain bikes on off-road trails I always have it with me.

Topeak Alien II 26-Function Bicycle Tool

Topeak Alien II 26-Function Bicycle Tool

The Topeak Alien II includes 26 of the tools you need for off-road trails, including: eight Allen wrenches (2/2.5/3/4/5/6/8/10mm), box wrenches (two each of 8/9/10mm), a T25 Torx wrench (for disc brake rotor bolts), Phillips and flat-head screwdrivers, spoke wrenches (14/15g), two tire levers, mini pedal wrench, stainless steel knife, bottle opener, a cast Cromoly steel chain tool and a steel wire chain hook. The body of this multitool also has a compartment for two chain pins (not included). The Topeak Alien II measures 3.4” x 1.7” x 1.6” inches (W x H x D) and comes with a nylon storage bag with a belt clip. This multitool weighs in at just a little over 10 ounces.

Topeak Alien II

Topeak Alien II

The Topeak Alien II comes with a decent user guide and instructions for using the chain tool. However, if you have never used a chain tool before I would highly suggest you go to YouTube.com and search for a video on “bicycle chain repair.” Watching someone repair a chain on video is a lot easier to understand that just seeing a sketch in the user guide.

Topeak sells two optional parts that will enable you to attach the Alien II storage bag to either your seat post or the stem on your bike frame. I have taken my Alien II out of the storage bag and carry it in my seat bag (along with a spare tube and two cans of compressed air). Since I often ride at night I have a flasher attached to my seat post. The included storage bag does have a belt clip, but for the life of me I don’t know why. If I ever saw anyone cycling while wearing a belt I would fall off my bike laughing.

The Topeak Alien II retails for $40.00, but is available on Amazon.com for under $29.00. Topeak offers a 2-year warranty on all mechanical components against manufacturer defects.

 

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Topeak Mini 9 Pro Multitool with Neoprene Bag

We all make compromises while cycling. We have to balance our desire to travel as light as possible with our fear of being stuck on a country road 30 miles away from home with a broken bike. For me, the Topeak Mini 9 Pro Multitool is the perfect of combination of weight and size for my road bikes.

Topeak Mini 9 Pro Multitool

Topeak Mini 9 Pro Multitool

The Topeak Mini 9 Pro Multitool is incredably small (2.6 x 1.2 x 0.8 in), yet has all the Allen wrenches I need for my Trek road bikes (2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6 mm, all of hardened steel). This multitool also includes two tire levers (one plastic, one hardened steel) and a #2 Phillips screwdriver. The body of the Mini 9 is made of a high-strength forged alloy. All of this fits in the included neoprene case and weighs only 2.57 ounces (73g).

The Topeak Mini 9 Pro Multitool retails for $22.00, but is available on Amazon.com for under $17.00. This tool is available in three colors (gold, silver, and black). Topeak offers a 2-year warranty on all mechanical components against manufacturer defects.

 

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