Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Because it's made by Chrome

I'm a fan of Chrome Industries bags. The iconic bags that for many define messenger bags at large, many imitators but rarely are they matched in quality and service. At $170 bucks the roll top "Pawn" back pack doesn't seem like a bargain but given that is waterproof, built like a tank and comes with a lifetime guarantee on parts and workmanship, it shows up best when viewed as a long term investment.

I made a madcap ride out past Point Reyes a couple weeks ago, putting my unfortunately not so healed knee to a test it sort of failed, and putting my Chrome bag to a test it didn't weather so well either. Not one but two buckles failed and I rode the last 50 miles or so yanking on my straps and tying knots to keep the thing where I needed it. Granted I probably over loaded it but one of the buckles held no problem and the bags don't come with a weight rating or any sanity inducing disclaimers. First lesson being no rational person will take on a ride that poorly thought out and overloaded and admittedly on a whim. Lesson learned, pack better and keep a bag ready to do those spur of the moment 80-100 mile rides that really do just come up when the weather is good. It was a worthwhile ride in spite of the challenges. Lesson two, Chrome bags are pretty bullet proof for 95% of the crap you will put them through bu they have their limits.
Bravo (the loaner bag)

Now the good part and why you ought to buy Chrome. I rolled in to the Chrome shop in SOMA today, the much bigger shop and show room they currently occupy and told them what had gone wrong with the bag. Not only did they not give me a hard time about it or ask how the buckles had failed in an attempt to avoid fixing them, they gave me a loaner bag to use while mine is being repaired free of charge. I know the bags don't fail often, my other two never have, but it's nice to know if they do, Chrome stands behind their product and isn't simply hyping things or throwing out marketing copy. I ride everywhere and rely on my gear to get me and all the things I lug around wherever I'm going and while I do have other bags I like, I have newly vetted reasons to trust my Chrome gear. Next problem is that now I want the Bravo as well.

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