Monday 17 February 2014

Blast from the Past – Part 1.

I was idly looking round the Internet when I found this pair of beauties:

A pair of 'Eurodesign' panniers from the mid 70s. I bought a pair of these in 1979 (probably from John Brown Wheels – remember the adverts in bike magazines?) and used them on my Yamaha SR500. They were very popular at the time and were made of what was laughingly termed 'leatherette', but was really cardboard covered in thin vinyl. They had aluminium backs to to stiffen then and attached to tubular racks with some really cheap (and short lived) plastic straps.

This particular pair must be at least 35 years old and although they look a bit tatty, this is what they looked like after about 3 months use. They were incredibly cheaply made, and that 'lock', which must have cost about 5p, could be opened with a bit of bent wire.

At the time I thought these were the greatest thing ever and had transformed my bike into the 'ultimate touring machine', but they soon leaked, straps broke, and holes appeared in the lower face (repaired with bits of old flooring tiles). I lent mine to my brother Stuart, and they were stolen from his Suzuki GT500 when he was on holiday in Ireland.
Should any of my readers in the US be desperate enough to want some, this pair are listed on Craigslist.

From Stuart's blog:

I think these are my panniers on Stuart's bike, Paris, 1980.

1 comment:

  1. Yes they're your panniers. As you say they were lost in Dublin when the 500 was stolen (I got the bike back but not the panniers) I bought another pair and used them for touring on various bikes. In fact they were used on my MZ Saxon for commuting until five years ago. They were cheap (and cheapo) but worked well. They could be fitted to any bike, they seemed to expand to accept a huge amount of gear and the straps were long enough to allow stuff to be carried on top of the panniers.