This spring, Chrome Industries introduced a new line of commuter bags called Ruckas. The company sent me two bags to test ― the Ruckas Sling and 14L Backpack. Even though these were primarily designed for commuters, I found many uses for these well-made bags, especially the Sling. Below are my reviews.
Colors: Natural, Oil Green, and Black
Dimensions: 14” H x 7.25” W x 3.5” D
Materials: Water resistant, recycled materials, 300D Poly dobby, 900D Poly and a 15D Poly liner
Weight: 0.79 lbs (0.36 kg)
How obtained: Company sample
RBR advertiser: No
Multiple Uses ― On and Off the Bike
This new Sling bag has become one of my go-to bags. It is exceptionally comfortable to wear, secure while riding or walking, and roomy without being bulky. I strapped on the Sling and tested it in a variety of circumstances. On the bike, I ran a few errands and was able to stow what I bought in the bag. Next, I used it while walking around a neighborhood festival. My jacket, wallet, and keys easily fit securely inside the bag, keeping my hands free for more important things ― sampling the food.
The Sling lays securely against your body, so there’s no movement on or off the bike. With a quick pull on the hook and eye strap, the shoulder strap swaps from right to left carry. There’s a front buckle allowing for easy on/off.
Storage is plentiful, with an outside zipper pocket and a larger main compartment. Both have cord pull tabs for easy access, even with gloves. The inside main compartment is nicely organized, with room for most size tablets, pens, and other items. I also used the small internal zipper pocket to secure my wallet and keys.
My sample was the Natural (off-white) color, and I was worried the light-color fabric would get dirty. But after numerous uses, it still looks brand new. I look forward to years of service, and it’s nice to know Chrome bags carry a lifetime warranty against material or workmanship defects.
Ruckas Backpack 14L
Price: $90 (14L)
Colors: Natural, Oil Green, and Black
Dimensions: 17” H x 8.25” W x 5” D
Materials: Water-resistant, recycled materials
Weight: 1.39 lbs (0.63 kg)
Commuter Backpack for all Your Essentials
Chrome offers two sizes of the Ruckas backpack ― 14L and 21L. I tested the smaller of the two, but it still carries a lot of gear securely and comfortably. The ergonomic, adjustable shoulder straps distribute the weight while the chest strap keeps the bag from moving or slipping.
Since I work from home, I couldn’t give the backpack a full test, but it was comfortable to wear and had a lot of great storage features. My only thought is that many commuters ride rain or shine, so since the fabric is only water-resistant, that could be an issue … especially if you’re carrying electronics.
Like the Sling, the fabric didn’t soil easily and seemed highly durable. At a price of $90 for the 14L, it’s an affordable option as a commuter bag.
Outside there’s a large zipper pocket in the back and an expandable pouch on the side to store a water bottle. Inside, you’ll find ample room for a tablet or laptop up to 13” and several compartments for pens, paper pads, or any other items you might need to carry to and from the office.
The price difference between the 14L and 23L is only $10, depending on the volume of supplies you need to carry, size up or down.
Look at the complete line of new Ruckas bags and all the Chrome Industries gear. They are constructed for years of use, plus, priced right, a winning combination.
Sheri Rosenbaum regularly contributes articles and reviews products for RBR. She’s an avid recreational roadie who lives in the Chicago area and a major advocate for women’s cycling, serving on the board of directors and volunteering with the Dare2tri Paratriathlon Club. Click to read Sheri’s full bio or visit her web site sunflowersandpedals.com.