In a nutshell:
Although the XM-45’s will behave on any type of bikes, they were designed with one thing in mind : “offroad” mountain biking. The taller, narrower, hooded, top loading design allows greater heel clearance and maximum compression for swift single track trips or those serious wilderness adventurers who want the most incredibly solid panniers on the market! The XM series offers riders three layers of waterproof protection. For more details see Arkel’s waterproof facts.
Add another layer of waterproof protection, increase visibility, keep grime off your bags with an Arkel rain cover.
Cycling adventures do not only take place on the road. A whole lot more can be found off the beaten track and in with the new bikepacking craze, we find that more and more cyclists are combining the joys of both on-road and off-road touring. Thus, touring with gravel bikes or mountain bikes is becoming increasingly popular. And so we’ve adapted the XM-45’s to the physical characteristics of these type of bikes. The XM-45’s offer ample heel clearance which is essential for adventure/gravel bikes and mountain bikes. And the fully loaded overall width of the pair of XM-45’s on a bike rack corresponds to the width of standard handlebars so that if your handlebar can squeeze between those tight spots and turns, your panniers are sure to follow.
Top Loading Bag
The XM-45’s are essentially top-loading bags (as opposed to front loading on typical touring panniers) Open the hood and stuff all your things in the huge main compartment, you will be amazed how much those bags will gobble up. Notice the extension skirt that allows for increased carrying volume. The drawstring closure will help stabilize the inside content when you’re only carrying partial loads.
Waterproof Zippered Liner
The main compartment is equipped with an internal zippered liner that keeps its content totally dry, and separate from any wet or dirty stuff you may need to carry in the main compartment.
Access by the top
Top-loaders are loaded from the top, right? Which precludes neat organization of the content such as well-folded clothes. Well, not in our XM-45’s, where we placed a zipper that actually slices the bag in two, from top to bottom, effectively allowing you to lay flat items and organize the content like no other top-loaders will allow.
Access from the bottom
Access to small items deep under the pile is made easy with the dual zipper sliders. Notice the size of the zipper and slider, they are #10 YKK zippers that will withstand just about any kind of use and abuse!
Many manufactures build their hoods like a pillow, barely covering the main bag at best. We build our hood with a box cut shape, ensuring a consistent, deep coverage over the main body of the pannier. Better still, the hood is lined with a waterproof fabric so the top opening is completely protected.
Side rear pocket
Fuel bottle, water bottle, gloves, shoes. You will find a zillion uses for this well stabilized, wide access rear pocket with our “smiley” zipper opening.
“Smiley opening” top pocket
This quick access top pocket may well be the one you use most often. Keys, wallet, maps, glasses, gloves and more Our “Smiley opening” zipper path allows full access to the inside of the pocket. Yet, if you forget to close the zipper, chances are that your belongings will safely stay inside the pocket and not spill on the road. Our clever pocket design has saved the day more than once, believe us!!!
Inside liner back pocket
A liner that covers the backplate allows for the stowage of flat objects like magazines, maps, books, passport, files etc.
Although the carrying volume is considerable, the XM-45’s have a profile much slimmer than regular touring bags. Also, the back-plate cut-out and adjustable hooks allow for exceptional heel clearance. In fact, we have very rarely heard of heel clearance problems with our XM pannier series.
Nexus to center the load
For years we’ve crossed our straps in an “X” pattern; this allows the “pick-up” of the opposite bottom corners and lifts them upward and inward, dramatically improving heel clearance and centering the load inside the pannier. The nexus is here, at these two webbing stabilizers. They distribute the stress over a wide area and keep the webbing from falling down when unclipped.
Straps won’t fall down
All straps are configured so that they will not dangle dangerously close to the spokes or touch the ground when left unbuckled. Safety, like we always say, has no price!
Made In Canada
Small details, but the XM-45’s are entirely made in North America, and are not imported or “designed in America” like some companies proclaim and lead you to believe they’re made here. Incidentally, the fabric is the real McCoy. It’s Dupont 1000 deniers CORDURA® nylon manufactured in North Carolina by Huber Textiles.
# 10 YKK zippers
Off road touring and extended expeditions in harsh conditions may take their take their toll on the bags’ zippers and sliders. We use the oversized, #10 YKK zippers that will withstand just about any kind of use, and abuse! Trust us!
Handle for easy carrying
Every Arkel pannier has a handle for off the bike convenience. The handle is long enough for a good grip but never so long that it will flap down and rub on the bike wheel. We make sure that this is never an option, as safety has no price. To learn more about the Cam-Lock® attachment system click here.
The XM’s can also be carried with a shoulder strap (optional). With the bags placed back to back, you will easily carry the pair of panniers with the one shoulder strap.
Lots of reflectors
Safety first! Be seen left, right and center, not to forget front and back!
The wrap-around compression strap is ideal to hook-up a blinking light. A blinker can also easily be installed at the front.
Some prefer top-loading panniers even when touring. Simplicity is the key. A rear and front combo, XM-45 and XM-28, makes for a very effective and elegant set. Whether you’re in the city or in the country, the XM-45’s have it all and that’s why they are one of our most popular models among both men and women!