Sewing a frame pump bag
Sat, Jul 27, 2019
Getting ready for the next hundred mile ride I wanted to lighten the load and not use the Arkel Randonneur rack and bag. They’re great for commuting but I wanted to just use a seatpack for the ride but there’s nowhere to stow the pump. The Topeak Mini Dual DXG is a superb little pump and it comes with a bottle mount bracket. However, the weather up here is usually crap and I didn’t want it exposed to the elements all day. The solution? Make a wee bag for it.
Last year I got a Brother sewing machine for a few quid off ebay, with the intention of making gear. Finding a manual for it was difficult as it seems to originate from when Brother took over Jones and my machine is actually a 1950s Jones JA-28. It’s a superb workhorse and I’ve made a few bags on it and this project was going to be a wee stuff stack and velcro straps. I get my buckles, velcro, webbing and cord locks etc from webfittings and the service is brilliant. No hassle and it arrives in a day or so with very good P&P and they’re based in a favourite spot of mine, down in St. Ives.
So the first thing I did was work out the dimensions of the stuff sack. With the pump measuring 10x2.25x1.5 inches it meant a piece of fabric 12.5x7.25 inches. I used nice yellow ripstop nylon I got from BST Fabrics which are another good stockist of interesting stuff. I chose yellow as you can never be too visible out on the roads. I lined the exits of the cord channel with 15mm orange grosgrain ribbon from Point North where I also get my cordura and other stuff. With the fabric cut, I mocked up the bag with wonder clips. These wee things are superb for prototyping as they grip the fabric well and let you shape it and try different designs out. I popped the pump in. Looking good so far.
It was then a case of sewing it up, strengthening the bottom with more grosgrain and knocking up a couple of velcro straps to keep it in place in the bracket. I find that the roads up here vibrate it out of the bracket at the bottom so I wanted a couple of straps to keep it from doing that. The design is based on this really good tutorial:
Sewing finished, the magic moment arrived of turning it right-side out and popping the pump in. Quick check on the bike, sew the straps and install them on the bracket. Job done.