When it comes to cycling panniers most people picture bulky bags stuffed with food and gear for multi-day trips. The North St. Commuter Micro Pannier that we have in this review sheds that image with a compact 14L capacity and easy attachment design. Retail price on the bag is $100 with an optional $15 shoulder strap that allows you to wear the bag. For easy attachment and removal, the Micro Pannier bag uses a hook and bungee system with multiple hook sizes available from 9-19mm rail sizes. There is also an Adventure Pannier variation that uses a Velcro setup for more secure attachment on rough terrain. While the bag is constructed of waterproof fabric the seams and zippers are not completely water tight. The bags are also made in the USA at North St. Bags Portland location which is rare to see these days.
The North St. Commuter Micro Pannier combines a compact 14L capacity with an easy to use hook and bungee system.
|Rating||9.0 / 10|
|Measured Weight (in g)||383|
|Likes||+ High quality construction that is made in USA|
+ Easy to use hook and bungee attachment system
+ Accessible external and internal pockets
|Dislikes||– Compact form factor limits what fits inside|
|Where to Buy (US)||North St. Bags|
With the North St. Bags Commuter Micro Pannier, North St. has incorporated a hook and bungee attachment system. This is designed to be both secure yet easily removable for frequent stops or commuting purposes. Note, there is an optional $15 2” shoulder strap which allows you to wear the bag which is convenient for commuting or shopping. North St. also sells a Adventure Micro Pannier version that uses wide Velcro attachments instead. The bag comes standard with 3/8″ (9mm) hooks or optional 1/2″ (12.5mm) and 3/4″ (19mm) hooks to accommodate different bike setups. There is an additional bungee and hooks on the rear to prevent the bag from bouncing as well as a reinforcement plate to prevent the bag from flexing. The rubber coated hooks slide onto racks while the bungee can be routed through the rack for additional stability.
FIT & FINISH
North St. has designed the Commuter Micro Pannier to be compact and portable for bike-packing or commuting. At only 14L, this is one of the smallest panniers North St. offers and features a streamlined hook and bungee system to allow it to be quickly attached or removed from a rack. North St. offers the bag in six different color schemes from darker colors like black and navy to brighter options like red and hi-vis orange. We have the EPX Rust color for this review which has an attractive cherry red color with a subtle mesh pattern. The straps and zippers are black regardless of which color you choose. Branding is limited to small tags on the seams along with an American flag below it to highlight the fact that it’s made in the USA.
As far as storage there are two pockets, an easy to access external zipper and an expandable roll up interior compartment. A plastic buckle holds the lid of the bag closed along with an adjustable strap to keep everything in place. There is also a small pocket on the inside that can be used to secure and separate smaller items. The fabric itself is a waterproof synthetic material which is thin but feels highly durable. North St. points out that the seams and zippers are not fully waterproof which only makes the bag highly water resistant. The overall dimensions of the bag are quite compact at only 18” x 8” x 5” which means larger laptops or other items may not fit inside the bag.
ON THE ROAD
We tested the Commuter Micro Pannier on our Troxus Lynx e-bike using the optional 12.5mm hook. The bag easily slid onto our rear rack as the hooks are flexible with a rubber coating to prevent any scratches. Sliding the bungee through cross bars on the rack helped stabilize the bag and hold it tight against the rack. Thanks to the bags small 14L size the pannier doesn’t add much weight or take up much space on the rack. We found the bag to be perfect for mail runs, carrying cycling shoes or other smaller items. You can even put longer items in the bag by leaving the top open and wrapping the strap to secure it in place. The only downside is that there isn’t much capacity which is why North St. also offers a 21L variation and other larger pannier options.
Overall, we found the North St. Bags Commuter Micro Pannier to be a well designed and portable pannier. At only 14L, the Commuter Micro Pannier is compact and highly portable for bike commuting or bike packing. We were impressed with the high quality construction and easy to use hook and bungee attachment system. Using the optional shoulder strap, the Commuter Micro Pannier can also easily be removed from the bike and worn for more versatility. North St. Bags also offers a variety of colors and hook sizes to match different bike setups and styles. The only downside of the pannier is that the small size limits what fits inside it so you may want to consider the larger variations if you need more capacity. That said, if you’re looking for a portable and well designed pannier then the North St. Bags Commuter Micro Pannier is a great choice.
Disclaimer: The product for this review was provided by North St. Bags. The views expressed on this website are solely those of the authors and are here to help people make an informed choice before a purchase. The authors or the blog itself does not get any monetary compensation from the product manufacturer or third-party websites/vendor links that are posted here.