At first sight it is evident that the rugged workmanship of this bag is built to last. Made from the trademarked ‘Waterproof Bomb Shell’ material (22 oz nylon-coated polyester) the bag somehow finds the perfect balance between structure and flexibility. The beefiest YYK zipper I’ve ever seen is responsible for securing the bag to the harness and even the thread is military-grade strong. Yet, somehow, despite its utilitarian, tough as nails material, the Fandango tank bag remains contemporary and rather refined looking; like James Bond… in a wetsuit.
In addition to its robust/elegant contradiction, the Fandago bag has another deceiving feature – its capacity. From its narrow girth and trim profile I estimated the bag would be in the 5-6 litre capacity range. Instead I was pleasantly surprised to discover it is a full 10 liters!
To give you an idea of what ‘real world’ capacity would look like, when I trialed this bag in the Baja I was carrying:
– 1 large scale SLR Camera (Cannon 30D)
– 1 pocket camera
– 1 wide angle lens
– 1 Telephoto lens (70-200 2.5 ISM)
– 1 Sony HD video camera
– 1 fleece sweater
– 1 lens cleaning kit
– 70 business cards
– 4 Spare Camera batteries
– 1 smartphone
– 2 AA batteries
I found this tank bag prefect for storing delicate electronics as the positioning is less vulnerable to damage in a crash and items were well padded by the removable foam insert. But if not a photography buff as I am; the space could easily carry 18 peanut butter/pickle sandwiches, 5 rolls of toilet paper or a large collection of ninja turtle figurines…
Thanks to the bright yellow interior of the bag, it was also easy to see and organize all contents, even in low light. What also helped with organization was that the map pocket feature is accessed from the main compartment and is backed by a mesh panel. The panel stopped the problem of condensation buildup soaking my map as the temperature changed. This is the first tank bag I’ve seen to efficiently combat this problem. The panel also allowed me to place objects and notes behind the map for organization and easy reference.
Getting the tank bag on the bike was amazingly fast and easy. Installing and adjusting the harness was completed in less than 10 minutes… with a coffee in one hand! The simplicity of the design transfers well to a wide range of bikes; dirt, street, large adventure, and dual sport (including those with large capacity tanks) and a rubberized carry handle makes it easy to lug into a restaurant, or anywhere else that the entire bike may not be as welcomed as your person!
Lastly, for all the rest of you tank bag haters, the real beauty of this bag came from its astounding ability to blend into the profile of the bike. It is barely noticeable – not standing, not sitting, not off-road, not on-road. Up or down hill this bag never got in my way or even reminded me of its presence. I think it has become part of my soul.