A Frame Bag For Full Suspension Bikes

by Andy Amick on August 17, 2012

in Bikepacking, Gear, Tips

A few weeks ago, I was preparing for a bikepacking trip with my oldest son.  We were riding on the Colorado Trail and he was riding on the tag-a-long.  The weight of the camping gear, a 7 year old, and the tag-a-long meant that I couldn’t use my singlespeed bike because I needed lower gears to make it up the climbs.  Enter the full suspension fully geared Yeti 575.  The only problem was the bike didn’t have a lot of space for a frame bag to carry gear.


A Simple Solution

After thinking about it and looking through my gear for a while, I realized my existing Jandd frame bag would work if it was turned upside down.  It’s almost a perfect fit for the triangle and it leave enough space for the suspension to compress without “smooshing” the bag.

Yeti 575 Jandd frame bag for bikepacking

Who knew a frame bag would work for a normal frame triangle and also fit a full suspension bike?  And it was an ideal solution because because I could re-use something I already had.  Finding multi-purpose items is the key to the game for lightweight bikepacking.


The Jandd Bag

Jandd Frame Bag with zippers on both sides

The Jandd frame bag is made out of sturdy nylon and it retails for $35.00.  The top has a narrow velcro strap and a wide velcro strap to attach it to the top tube.  The front has two straps that attach it to the downtube.  There are two compartments – the main compartment on the right and a slim compartment on the left side.  Each compartment has a zipper that runs the length of the frame bag.

I’ve used this bag on my singlespeed bikepacking setup for several years until this summer when I purchased a full frame bag from NoLogo Bikepacking.  The Jandd bag easily holds enough food for a two day trip.


Attaching The Bag

Jandd frame bag upside down with zippers on the bottom and a Lizard Skin velcro extension

After attaching the frame bag upside down, the zippers are on the bottom instead of the top.  It’s not a big deal as long as you double check to make sure the zippers are completely closed so your goodies don’t fall out.

The Yeti 575 frame has a shaped downtube which results in a much wider diameter tube than a standard tube.  This prevented the velcro strap on the bag from reaching all the way around.  The solution is to get a few extension pieces of heavy duty velcro to make the strap reach around.  An even better solution is the use of a Lizard Skin chainstay protector.  I had one of these in my bike tool box and it was the perfect width for an extension.

The frame bag required me to remove my water bottle cage.  Luckily, the Yeti 575 has a cage mount on the underside of the downtube.  When mounted there, it looks like your feet would hit it while pedaling, but I didn’t have any problems.  Funny, I guess Yeti knew what they were doing when they designed it.


Upside Down Works

Overall, the frame bag worked great for our Colorado Trail adventure.  In it, we packed 2 bagels, a 2 person dehydrated meal, 4 or 5 Lara bars, several packs of gummy bears, a small bag of trail mix, a small bag of almonds, and two Slim Jims.  Even with all of that, there was still room to fit more bars or small snacks.

When bikepacking, especially on your first few trips or a quick overnighter, just “use what ya got”.  Your existing gear might work in some unusual and upside down ways.



About Andy Amick
A little bit nutty in general, a lotta bit nutty about bikes. Each of his boys received a bike helmet for their first birthday and the three of them have been biking together ever since.

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