FIRST PUBLISHED A to B 53 – April 2006
Good ideas arrive on our doorstep almost every day. For all sorts of reasons, some are not quite as good as they first appear. Maybe too heavy, too fiddly, or not unusually, a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist. But you can generally rely on Steve Parry of SP Bicycles to come up with a practical, useable good idea. Anyone who knows the Brompton luggage system will know that it’s both clever and practical – a selection of large, medium and small panniers that click-fit onto the front of the bicycle. Once you’ve got used to something this effective, you’ll want to fit the panniers to other bikes, but the click-fit block is Brompton-specific, so you can’t, or at least, not very easily. 38
Steve Parry’s latest accessory is a Luggage Post; effectively a Brompton luggage block mounted on a short stem fixed to a seatpost rack clamp.These clamps will fit any size of seat post, from the oversize Dahon and Brompton posts down to the full range of conventional posts.You can either mount the Luggage Post behind a Brompton and carry panniers front and rear, or whip it onto just about anything else, making the Brompton luggage panniers more or less universal.
…a Brompton luggage block mounted on a short stem fixed to a clamp…
A quick flick through our transitory bike collection revealed that the SP Luggage Post will fit most small-wheeled bikes, from Moultons and Micros to the Airframe, plus the majority of full-size bikes, provided they have enough clearance between the rack and saddle.The only real problem is that a suspension seat-post will probably get in the way. An advantage with smallwheelers is that the block can be fitted very low down, putting the load rather lower than it would be on a big bike, helping to keep things stable. On some bikes, the Luggage Post can be lowered until some of the weight is carried on the rack – a good idea if you are intending to carry a lot of weight (Brompton suggest a maximum of 10kg for the block itself, but we’d suggest keeping below 8kg). On the Brompton, folding is more or less unaffected. Loosen the quick-release on the Luggage Post, swing it forward, and you end up with a folded package a little taller than normal. In 30 seconds or so, the post can be removed and refitted upside down, leaving the bike more or less as compact as any other.The weight penalty of 480g, complete with fittings, is a modest price to pay for such versatility.
Whether you own a Brompton or not, this is an effective bit of kit. The cost depends on what you already have: The Luggage Post costs £50, a Brompton carrier block another £15, and a suitable Brompton pannier bag £32 to £50. This is one of those rare accessories that leave you wondering how you survived before the postman dropped it through the letterbox. Very, very useful.
Brompton Luggage Post £50
Max Load (estimated) <8kg
Seat Post Size 25-33mm
Manufacturer SP Bicycles
tel 01934 516158
A to B 53 – April 2006