A waterproof do all duffle from Ortlieb

Ortlieb has been in the business of waterproof bike bags for many years. The Duffle RC extends the use of Ortliebs bags to be used off the bike. From the airport, camping, or on your cargo bike the Duffle RC can be used in a variety of ways. Let’s get into our review of the Duffle RC

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The Lab

The Duffle RC comes in two sizes, 49L and 89L. The olive color version we are reviewing is the 49L version. The bag is produced sustainably in Germany out of a durable, abrasion and tear-resisting PD620 material. It has padded shoulder straps, that are detachable, to use as a backpack. Moreover, these straps can also velcro together to be used as a handle to carry the bag.

The opening of the bag is one large roll top opening. To close this opening, you roll the bag over a few times and clip the sides towards the skinny end of the bags. There are also closure straps that go over the top of the roll top to secure it all shut. Along with those clasps, the Duffle RC has daisy chain rigging along the side so you can use other straps to secure the bag.

Whereas other bags use waterproof zippers, the Duffle RCs roll-top enclosure eliminates the need for cumbersome zippers. It should be noted that you do have to roll the enclosure 3-4 times over to ensure waterproofness. The Duffle RC 49L weights 35.3 oz and measure 13.4″ height x 24″ width x 12.6″ deep.

How we used the Duffle RC

Personally I am a fan of duffle bags for their versatility and catch all aspect of them. The Duffle RC adds waterproofing to make this a bag that much more useful, especially on the bike. On a recent trip to Austin to work with MOD Bikes, the inclement weather in the forecast meant this bag would be put to good use.

Firstly, the bag had to be packed and made flight ready. The 49L size is enough space a few days on the road as well as carry on capable. I have my own packing cubes that I used, but Ortlieb also makes some that would work great with the Duffle RC. Unlike my rolling carry on case I usually bring, the Duffle RC has no wheels so we’d be putting the handles to the test.

Even so, it is convenient that bag has shoulder straps that can be used as a handle as well. One thing I made sure not to do was load the bag up too much, as carrying it across the airport gets a bit cumbersome. When we got on the plane, the bag fit just right in the overhead bin.

On the road

Once in Austin, I transferred my clothes and actually put my backpack in the Duffle RC. Definitely a bit weird, but we knew we could possibly get hit with rain and didn’t want cameras to get wet. Also, this bag would be easier to strap down to the racks than the backpack, win win.

Despite having a bag in a bag, it was easy to access the backpack. The opening of the Duffle RC is large and easy to open wide. With rolling the opening a few times it seals the duffle to keep any water out. Also, you could make the bag a but more compact by rolling a bit tighter and tightening the clasps more. To secure the Duffle RC we used the strap from the bikes rack as well as a ROK Strap that I like to use. Ortlieb also makes cargo straps for the Duffle RC, but we didn’t have them to use. Even so, the bag was easy to strap down to the racks, especially on the MOD Bikes Cargo.

Over the few days, we encountered some rain and had no worry of water getting on our gear. Moreover, the bag looks good on and off the bike. The straps make it easy to carry on your shoulder and the handle is pretty comfortable to hold. Clearly Ortlieb put some work in to make this bag versatile for many use cases. Despite all these features, one thing that would be nice would a smaller pocket, just to put some loose items you don’t want to roll around inside the duffle.

Overall, the Duffle RC is a very useful bag made for all sorts of adventures. If you are looking for a tough, good looking carry all duffle that will keep the water and dust out, look no further then the Ortlieb Duffle RC.

Price: $130/$150
Sizing: 49L/89L
Colors: Black/Olive
Website: www.Ortlieb.com

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