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David Fiedler

Chrome Lieutenant Roll-Top Messenger Bag

By December 18, 2012

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Chrome Lieutenant messenger bagSo if you've got stuff to haul when you're out riding, there are a couple options.  You could set yourself up with a rack and panniers, but that's a fairly committed relationship if you know what I mean.  That's the kind of thing that's good if you're going on an extended bike tour, and are packing stuff to last you for a couple days.  That can also certainly work if you've got serious cargo to haul around town, but requires a dedicated mount for the rack on your bike frame.

Another option is a messenger bag, which have their origins in the bike courier culture in New York, San Francisco and are used any place people make a living carrying packages around busy urban centers.

San Francisco's Chrome has been one of the leaders in the field of messenger bag design and their latest model, a roll-top bag called the Lieutenant continues that trend of rugged, stylish, extremely functional bike accessories.

The Lieutenant features an astounding 26 liter (!) capacity, and the type of durable construction that Chrome is famous for.  It's no itty-bitty dainty little knap-sack; this 21.5 inch wide bag is built with a tough Cordura nylon outer shell and keeping with the military theme, a military-grade truck tarpaulin liner is used for the waterproof inner compartment. It's on the heavy side at 3.4 lbs (empty), but like I said, this is no flimsy lightweight bag.

Chrome Lieutenant messenger bag - interior viewThe roll-top feature is a slick variation of the more common flap used on most messenger bags.  It allows for an expanded storage compartment and the accompanying velcro-based seal at the top makes it waterproof, using much the same priniciple as a canoeing drybag.

Chrome finishes off the Lieutenant with a padded strap with the company's signature seatbelt buckle (with built-in bottle opener!) for easy on/off mounting.

Other features:

  • Dual waterproof compartments separate wet/dry cargo
  • External pockets for quick secure access to u-lock and tools
  • Mounting loops for attaching carabineer clips or bike lights
  • Fits up to a 17" Macbook pro. Sleeve recommended

Listing at $170 it's a tad pricy but with this made-in-the-USA, lifetime guarantee bag, you can count on it holding up to years of use and abuse.

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