MTB-MAG.COM - Mountain Bike Magazine | [Tested] Specialized SWAT Bandit

[Tested] Specialized SWAT Bandit

[Tested] Specialized SWAT Bandit

05/01/2016
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05/01/2016

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A while back, when we started riding the Specialized Power saddle, we went on a bit of a SWAT binge; in addition to running their nifty bottle cage/tool combo and their EMT chain tool, we bolted a “Bandit” up to our saddle.  The Bandit tucks everything you need to change a flat neatly under your seat and straps it all down so the contents don’t bounce and rattle around like they would in a seat bag.

Details

  • Uniquely designed to bolt directly under a saddle with SWAT compatible mounts.
  • Individual compartments for a CO2 valve head, mountain tube, two-sided tire lever (included), and a 25g CO2 cartridge for compact and secure storage.
  • Tough, lightweight, water resistant Velcro® strap.
  • Tube, CO2 cartridge, and nozzle not included.
  • Retail : $25.00_DSC9194

First Impressions

Once we attached the discrete aluminum frame to the saddle via two 4mm allen screws, we started packing our Bandit.  Everything nestled nicely into their respective places fairly well.  Once nuance was that a full sized 25 gram CO2 was a bit of a squeeze but that also meant that it stayed put nicely.  The Specialized brand C02 head is incredibly small and light so while that fit in it’s little pouch, a slightly large CO2 head from another brand did not.  No worries as we just wrapped it up in the tube and it didn’t budge.

On the Trail

Obviously there won’t be anything super technical to report here; over the span of a few hundred miles nothing flew out of our Bandit and it stayed quiet as can be.  It’s easy to pack and unpack, weighs virtually nothing and we never felt it graze our inner thighs while pedaling – in other words it’s super low profile.  A typical seat bag would weigh slightly more, offer a bit more room for something like a multi tool, but often with bags, the contents have a tendency to rattle around a bit; this wasn’t the case with the Bandit.  One neat thing that we did was wrap a $1 bill and some patches into our tube in the event that we tore a tire casing enough that patching it or at least covering it was necessary.
_DSC9458

Overall

All in all, this is the accessory for the racer or minimalist who likely already uses other SWAT items like the bottle cage/tool combo or the bibs.  It’s another simple and effective way to keep just what you need strapped to your bike and avoid wearing a hydration pack.  This, in combination with other SWAT bits allow you to avoid a big sweaty patch on your back if you’re just out on a short to mid length jaunt.  The other bonus is that you never have to think about packing because everything you need is strapped to the bike.  The Bandit is a great little product for just $25.00.  The only catch is that you need a Specialized brand saddle to mount it to as the bolt pattern is specific to the Specialized.  Overall, we’ve had great success with their seats; they offer a wide variety of shapes and profiles in a broad price range so there is no reason to hesitate trying one.

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www.specialized.com

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