Tested: Pacsafe Bike Bags - Slice 'n Dice

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Pacsafe may be one of many companies producing bike bags, but they are not in danger of getting lost in the crowd thanks to a rather distinctive feature: Pacsafe manufactures soft bags with an integrated steel mesh lining they claim will stop would-be thieves from getting into your luggage.

Having first seen their product a year ago and liking the idea, we tried out three of their offerings. All three items included a built in integrated cable lock to ensure their bag cannot be removed from the bike.

Tail Safe Tail Bag

The Tail Safe is Pacsafe's tailbag. Tipping our scales at hefty 8 pounds empty, the Pacsafe Tail Bag is rather bulky, and though an internal aluminum frame helps it keep its shape, it makes it impossible to collapse this bag when it's empty. These two items combine to kill much of the benefits a soft bag normally offers.

Great in concept, in practice in our opinion this bag is too cumbersome to use for anything other than a permanent mount to your bike. Fully loaded, it would be impractical to carry it with the included shoulder strap.

We like the idea, but if you're going to go this far, you may as well go all the way and pick yourself up a hard top box for your commuting needs. A quality hard top case can easily be found for less cash outlay than the $249 price tag the Tail Safe carries.

Tank Safe tank bag

Just like the Tail Safe the Tank Safe did a good job of keeping its shape - actually, too good a job. The bag's profile is rather large - clearly too large for the RC51 we initially tried it on, as well as the ZX-10R and 1098 we attempted to fit it too. Like its sibling, this bag is rather heavy, weighing 5 pounds empty.

It did mount nicely. The typical zippered base strapped on easily and provided a solid mounting point for the bag. Since we haven't seen a large hard tank case, the Tank Safe may be a good option for someone who likes a large tank bag and who needs something more secure, however the stiff and bulky shape make it an uncomfortable option if you like resting your tired body on your tank bag during long rides.

Lid Safe helmet bag

The Lid Safe is similar to the helmet bag that was probably included when you purchased your helmet (our Arai's all included one), except that the Lid Safe incorporates Pacsafe's steel mesh and cable lock. Combining a nice soft liner and a nylon shell, this product lets you stash your helmet, gloves, and whatever other items you can fit inside the bag, and lock it to your bike via the attached cable lock.

You can also pass the cable through the sleeve of your pricey jacket so you can leave it draped over your bike and know there's a better chance that it will still be there when you get back. When not in use, it squishes down nice and small, allowing you to store it in the tail of most bikes. A great item for when you run to the mall or a restaurant and don't want to walk to drag your gear around inside - the Lid Safe provides the extra security you need to protect your helmet from all the creepy scenarios that could turn up when you leave you lid locked to your unattended bike .

But does the steel mesh work?
Check out our video as we (literally) cut into the meat of the problem...

Well, sad to say - no, not really. We took a brand new Tank Safe and some basic thieves tools and began to slice. Although providing more resistance than a simple fabric or nylon tank bag, we were surprised just how easily the Tanksafe's steel mesh was breached with a simple box cutter.

Though the Pacsafe system is considerably sturdier than a conventional bag and will easily thwart a run of the mill thief, the bags are by no means Fort Knox. Street smarts and common sense are definitely worth more than the steel mesh liner Pacsafe offers.

If you want some added piece of mind, the Pacsafe system is for you. We love the Lid Safe, but the tank and tail bags aren't our cup of tea.

You can find Pacsafe at www.pacsafe.com

Tail Safe: $249.99
Tank Safe: $199.99
Lid Safe: $59.99

Source: Bikeland.org

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