If you’re in need of something stylish and modern to put bits and bobs in for a little trip out that doesn’t bust your bank balance then this tankbag from Oxford might do just the job.
That was precisely what I was looking for: somewhere handy to put a drink, my compact camera and some essential daytime items for a tour around Scotland.
On browsing the options, only a few products fell into this category with around three to five litres of capacity, so I thought I’d try this bag.
The Oxford Q4S bag has a four-litre capacity with a 5kg weight limit, which appealed to me as some others have only a 2kg capacity. I didn’t plan to load it with heavy stuff, though the 5kg limit gave me peace of mind that the bag would stay put.
Before mounting to the bike I had to fit the clamping mechanism to the bottom of the bag, which was an easy job: a few screws through a few holes and it was ready to attach to my bike.
The mechanism on the bag has three slots, which sit over three tabs on the tank ring adapter. With a bit of downward pressure the bag clicks into place and sits firmly on the tank of my bike. I wasn’t 100% sure I’d done it right the first time, but once I heard the click I knew it was secure.
To release the bag, pulling a lever on the side of the mechanism releases the three tabs and I can lift the bag away. I have to make sure I pull the lever all the way back, as this seems to reset something inside, which allows me to hear that reassuring click again the next time I fit the bag.
In addition, the bag comes with a separate strap with clips. This is designed to thread around the headstock of my bike and then through a loop on the bag. Once clipped together, the strap can be pulled taut, holding the bag down for added security.
So what was it like on the road? I took this bag on a 1440-mile trip up through England and round Scotland and it was perfect for storing my day-to-day items.
I like a good puzzle, so I managed to fit in the following: a 500ml bottle of water, a compact camera, snack bars, visor cleaning kit, bottle of insect repellent, an insect head net, the bag’s rain cover, a wallet, a mini bottle of squash, sweets, GoPro accessories, a powerbank and a rain cover for my phone case. Quite a lot really!
Despite having enough room for all that clutter, the bag is small and compact enough to not get in the way while I’m riding. The upright position of my naked bike meant I had no worry of catching it with my jacket or the chinbar of my helmet, which may be a concern on a sports bike.
The bag has a smart and classy design, consisting of a semi-rigid outer material, and it’s matt black in colour.
Weather-resistant zips mean you don’t have to worry straight away if there is a shower, but you can slip an elasticated waterproof cover over the top should the heavens open. This is easily stored inside a mesh pocket on the underside of the lid.
The bag itself has two cable outlet/inlets, one at the front and one at the back. Both have a good amount of water-resistance, so it can be a little stiff to feed charging cables through. I’d rather that than my stuff getting wet, though.
When you get to your destination, there is a soft-gripped carry handle on the front edge, allowing you to carry it around comfortably.
It also has loops for attaching an Oxford Phone Holder and a recess on the top where your phone can lay, to use it for navigation. The rain cover also has a see-through panel, so if you do get the phone holder you can still see it through the window.
Finally, when you have finished your journey and you are back home, you can store your Oxford Q4S tank bag in the cloth protective drawstring bag that comes with it.
All-in-all, this bag went over and above what I was expecting for something so compact. It is very smart and looks the part when fitted to my bike. This is definitely a great product from Oxford.