As my mother-in-law regularly reminds me, you’ve got to love a bag. Although that could be taken several ways.
On this occasion the bag I love is actually a textile bag from Spanish luggage specialists Shad. I’ve not stopped using it on and off the scooter since I got it.
What’s it for?
This is the larger of Shad’s 2 tunnel bags. The idea is that they sit in the central tunnel of a maxi-scooter, massively increasing your carrying capacity while also providing rapid ease of access. It’s made from very tough fabric.
In my case the bag serves to store anything I need for a big journey (waterproofs or passport etc) and any camera kit I might be carrying. All are merely a zip away when you are riding – faster even than an under-seat storage area or top box.
How does it fit?
If you use it as intended then there are Velcro pads for affixing to your bodywork and quick release straps to keep the bag in position between your legs.
If I’m honest, that’s how I’d use it on my Tmax, but riding a Vespa GTS, or our Maicoletta I simply hang the handle on the hat hook and it’s a perfect fit in the space between your legs. It would also work on a Vespa PX helmet-hook but you’d need to keep it off to one side in order to access the rear brake pedal.
What will it take?
This broadly triangular-shaped version is 24-litres so it’ll easily accommodate a full face crash helmet and weight up to 31kg, but I’ve carried all manner of other shaped items including tripods.
What’s good about it?
The advantage of a tunnel bag over a top box is that it’s quicker and easier to take with you as soon as you get off the scooter. There’s a single handle and a shoulder strap, both of which are strong. The bag is padded to protect the contents against knocks and scrapes and has a quality feel that’s backed up by a 2-year warranty.
The tunnel bag concept is much less ugly than a top box and far better for handling because any weight you carry in the bag is between the axles.
What’s not so good?
The SC30 isn’t waterproof, presumably because the rain in Spain falls mainly on the plains. Frankly in Britain, that’s not the case, as our sodden summer will confirm. My simple solution to this is to put anything I need to keep dry inside a thin Ortleib waterproof roll-bag. Obviously it would be better if you didn’t have to bother.
Secondly, and only of concern to those of dwarfish or hobbit height, is that with a tunnel bag fitted you now have to swing a leg over your scooter instead of simply stepping over. Those of us with adult-length legs needn’t worry but stumpies might.
Where to get one?
Ah, here’s the rub. After sending me one to test last year, it seems that Shad have now deleted this model, but there is still old stock to be found with a simple Google search for around £60. I love it because you can use it on and off the scooter, remove it in seconds and carry hands-free with the shoulder strap.
The good news is that the slightly smaller SC25 is still readily available and currently discounted to £29.99. You can find the Shad SC25 here.
Specifications and contact
- Up to 24 litres capacity
- Maximum Load: 31kg
- Can take 1 full face helmet
- Weight: 0.42kg
- Length: 26 cm
- Width: 40 cm
- Height: 30 cm