Mount Compatibility: Garmin Varia RVR315 and RTL515
How obtained: Company sample
RBR advertiser: No
Unique Saddle Bag with Built-in Varia Radar Mount
While roaming the isles of CABDA Midwest last month, I came across one of KOM Cycling’s new products. Their new saddle bag has a built-in mount for the Garmin Varia RVR315 and RTL515 (Note mount not compatible with Varia RCT715 radar with camera). Since I always use a Varia radar on road and gravel rides, I was excited to test this new option.
The benefits of incorporating the radar mount into the saddle bag include the following:
- perfect for shorter riders with minimal seat post real estate
- if you have more than one bike, it eliminates the need for multiple mounts or moving mounts
- increases radar visibility by moving it off the seat post and up higher
- doesn’t interfere with a dropper post
Using a strap with the ATOP reel knob lacing system attaches the bag under the saddle. Simply thread the strap over the seat rails and ratcheting it tight with a reel knob is easy and quick. The Varia radar mount is built-in to the end of the bag and keeps it at the correct angle for visibility and detection.
Once installed, I conducted several test rides on the road and gravel. The bag stayed secure without movement, and the Varia radar worked flawlessly. I liked that the radar was higher up and more secure than the mount Garmin provides, which is held on with o-rings.
I have two suggestions for future versions of this bag. First, I’d like the option for a larger version since I’m not always a minimalist and would like more room to carry stuff. Second, I’d like a strap that loops around the seat post for added security. If by any chance the main strap that goes around the seat rails breaks, a strap around the seat post would prevent losing the bag and valuables. And yes, I’ve had this happen with another well-known brand of bags. A seat post strap saved me from losing my wallet and phone.
KOM Cycling’s new saddle bag with Varia mount is an excellent option for getting the radar off your seat post and up higher, keeping you safer with better visibility to drivers. At a $39.99 price point, you can’t go wrong.
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.
I bought one and agree with your suggestions.
Haven’t used it yet. We are in the midst of a top ten snowfall winter in Minnesota.
But am excited to try it out.
If you wanted to mount to a saddle bag you had to kludge something together for it, using a saddle rail mount.
Finally, someone jumped on this. The Garmin forums have been asking for this for a long time. My particular setup precludes me from attaching the Varia to the seatpost when I have my seat bag attached. I shifted to a top bar bag but whenever I dismounted (e.g. at a light/stop sign) a single leg and leaned the bike, I would always have to readjust the bag as my knee/leg would invariably touch it.
I opted for this 3-D printed mount, and it’s been working great. Not cheap, but it seems to be the only option out there (aside from this bag, now).
I have one of these.
Very hard to get on and off.
Always afraid of breaking the 3d printed plastic.
Waiting for snow to.melt to try this new bag.
Good point, I leave mine on one bag all the time, so don’t experience that issue you describe.