Yarny Goodness!

Another super exciting fun knitblog

  • November Knit Goals

    I'm prone to being a scatterbrain, so I try to make a short list of things to accomplish each month (lest I have 27 different non matching socks).

    Same as last month: Sleep more. Study more. Knit more. Sleep more.

  • Sweater-a-Month 2008

    Cabled Hoodie: Cascade 220 - Needs seams

    Urban Aran

    Mariah: Ella Rae Classic

    Tricot

    Tubesque: Noro Garden + ???

    CeCe: Silky Wool

    Lucy in the Sky

    Rogue: Handspun - Needs seams

    Elizabeth Zimmermann's Bog Jacket

    Ribbi Cardi: Cotton Ease (Blue/White)

    Ruffled Surplice (spring 07 Interweave): Yard TBD

    Red Carpet Convertible

    Silk Corset Top: Alchemy Synchronicity

    Eyelet Rib Cardi (inspired by Spring 07 Interweave)

    Bella Paquita: Shelridge? Karabella? Sublime?

    A top down set in sleeve sweater (a la Barbara Walker)

    Giselle

    Vintage Pink (Raspberry) Cardigan - FINISHED!!

Totally Not Knit: DIY Bike Panniers

Posted by Amber on April 17, 2011

Hi anyone who still has me listed on bloglines/ google reader/etc! Wow, a year since I last posted. Not that I don’t knit, I just don’t write about it so much. Ravelry totally killed plain project blogs, eh?

Anyhow, with gas inching toward $4/gallon, I’m trying to ride my bike more – but I get soooo hot carrying a backpack (it’s 10 miles each way to work!), but store bought panniers are easily $100. I looked at Etsy, and there’s some really pretty handmade ones — still $100. While looking around for anything cheaper, I ran across a pretty cool website – instructables.com. Little DIY tutorials. I read a bunch of them on panniers, and decided to sacrifice some old bags I had sitting around.

First, I went to Home Depot and picked up supplies:

Hardware: polycarbonate sheet; d-ring picture hanger; cap nuts; carabiner;

You’ll need: 1. A polycarbonate (plexiglass/acrylic) sheet – I went with Lexan because it’s shatter resistant, and the strongest for that thickness – it was about $17, and the most expensive part of the project.  2. A 2-pack of d-ring picture frame hangers – about $2.  3. Optional – Cap nuts for the backs of the screws – or regular screws and nuts, about 1/2 inch long – about 50 cents each.  4. Carabiners (2/bag) – 99 cents each.

First, measure your bag and cut the polycarbonate sheet to size.

Step 1 - Mark where you'll drill the holes.

I used one piece for the bottom to help the bag keep it’s shape, and one piece about 4 inches tall by the length of the bag (in my case, about 17 inches) as a backplate.  Mark the spot where you’ll be drilling holes (about 2.5 inches in from the side of each).  I drilled 5 sets of holes – two for the hangers, and 3 which I then used a needle and thread to sew the backplate to the bag.

Drilling

Carefully drill the holes.

Punching holes in the bag to attach d ring

Now, get your bag ready – I used potato nails to punch holes in the bag spaced for the picture hanger.

Now, secure the hanger to the bag – punch the screw through the bag and then through the backplate.  Secure a nut against the plastic back:

I used really long screws (1 inch), if (WHEN!) I make these again, I’ll use shorter screws, probably only a half inch.  I used regular nuts to secure the screw, but if you’re worried about the screw snagging your stuff in the bag, you could use “cap nuts” as shown above.  I wasn’t sure what they were called when I was picking up supplies.  In this case, the backplate goes over a zipper – it was broken anyway.

Finally, use carabiners to secure the bag to the bike rack:

Use carabiner to attach bag to rack

That’s it! $20 worth of materials (since I had the 2 old bags hanging out).

One Response to “Totally Not Knit: DIY Bike Panniers”

  1. Amber said

    Great job Amber! I love DIY projects. :) And welcome back to blogging!

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