Introducing the Saddle Roll by Orucase.
The first saddle bag to use a ski strap attachment system.
The attachment system for all saddle bags is the point of contention. Velcro wears out, and doesn’t have the best grip when it comes to compressing your bag, buckles are either big and bulky, or so small you have a hard time pinching them to get them to release. More recently we’ve had high(er) tech options like BOA and integrated options, but these open up new, and unnecessary problems.
KISS is an acronym for "Keep it simple, stupid" as a design principle noted by the U.S. Navy in 1960. The KISS principle states that most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than made complicated; therefore simplicity should be a key goal in design and unnecessary complexity should be avoided.
Enter the ski strap, long trusted by backcountry skiers; the strap can be used to lash skis together, fix broken boot buckles, or broken poles. Bikepackers have been using them recently, but they've been missing from the road world until now.
Orucase Saddle Roll in Multicam X-Pac
The slightly stretchy rubber, with a camming buckle allows a 2-to-1 mechanical advantage for tightening. This allows us to use a single strap to attach the saddle bag, and keep it rock solid. We can do away with the 2nd strap that is generally used to keep the bag stable by attaching to the seat post, which in reality just hits your thighs and becomes more annoying than anything else.
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Once we had the attachment system sorted, we had to implement our second design principle: be prepared for anything. When we raced professionally 6 to 8+ hour rides were common while training. And when you get that far into the mountains you might not have cell service, or see another soul for hours. For this reason we wanted our saddle roll to hold:
- 2 tubes
- Tire levers
- Patch kit
- Miscellaneous small parts (valve adaptor, tire boot, chain link)
- Optional CO2 (we’re partial to frame pumps)
Everything has it's place
Positioning and organizing these was simple. The tire levers are placed centrally, under the leather patch, in this position it acts as an internal frame to keep the shape of the bag. A waterproof zipped Dyneema pocket keeps your small tools in place, as well as providing a safe location for money, keys, or ID.
Dyneema, or Ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene. Dyneema is the world’s strongest, lightest fiber – 15 times stronger than steel, yet still floats on water. We use the 1oz/sqm variety which is mostly transparent so that you can see your small parts, yet provides a high level of abrasion resistance unlike cheaper plastic pouches.
Once rolled up, the tools and small parts sit nestled between both tubes. This allows the roll to be compressed to the point that there is no rattling as the tubes hold everything else in place. As a bonus the tools can be accessed with the roll still on the rails, or can act as a clean surface to work on.
Unrolled, but still attached to saddle
To wrap things up we chose a variety of materials and colors. Some subdued, some a bit more out there. We’re offering our saddle roll in 6 different material/color choices. 1000D Mil-spec Cordura in our camouflage options, and X-Pac, an extremely abrasion resistant, waterproof (to 200PSI!), tear resistant fabric.