Words & photos by Mike Stead
Adding to the excellent Tailfin Alloy Rack, the 20L AP20 Trunk Top Bag provides secure, waterproof and quickly-removable luggage to your system.
- Reviewed: Tailfin AeroPack S
- Reviewed: Tailfin Carbon Suspension Fork Mount
- Stash more with Tailfin's Mini Cage
Tailfin has built a well-deserved reputation for lightweight, rock-solid racks that are easily fitted to pretty much any bike. The AP20 Trunk Top Bag has evolved from the Tailfin AeroPack, hence the 'AP20'. The AeroPack has basically the same form factor, but it's built-in to the rack itself, which saves some weight, but it means you can't use panniers or remove the bag and walk around with it as luggage or take it inside a tent or bothy. So the removable Trunk Bag adds flexibility to the system, with no drawback aside from a bit of extra weight.
AP20 Trunk Top Bag | Build & features
At the heart of the Trunk Top Bag is an alloy frame wrapped in an ultrasonic-welded waterproof material. The bag is accessible from the top via a roll-top closure held closed at each end by a simple quick-release buckle and then tightened down with a cinch strap. These buckles are plastic D-rings allowing you to add an aftermarket shoulder strap to easily carry the bag off the bike. Oddly it's about the one accessory Tailfin doesn't sell.
There are zips on either side of the bag. One gives access to a shallow external pocket for frequently-needed things like a multitool, minipump, tubeless plug kit, or whatnot. The other side has a waterproof zip giving access to the inside of the bag without the need to unroll the top.
Around and over the top of the bag are two removable buckled straps that cinch down tight for compression. These are also brilliant for securing bulky or wet gear, like a rolled-up jacket or footwear like sandals, or Crocs in my case.
The quick-release nature of the Trunk Top Bag is excellently done. The front of the bag hooks into the front of the rack, and the rear clicks into place using two spring-loaded stainless steel catches. The connection is so solid that I could pick up the back of the bike by the bag without a smidge of movement, which translates into absolute stability and silence even riding over the roughest of trails.
If you're only carrying a small amount of cargo, the bag rolls down small, and the end straps have enough space to cinch the rolled top down tight. There's a bit of strap loop left over, but as the ends are retained, the excess doesn't go anywhere and is easily tidied away.
A removable rubber frame cover inside the bag helps to minimise rattling when carrying metal luggage like cook sets or fuel bottles. You can save 40g by taking the cover out if you like. Tailfin rates the AP20 for 9kg of load and, if it matters, being able to fit a 12" laptop - although I think you'd want a laptop sleeve in that case.
Living with the AP20 Trunk Top Bag on multi-day trips is very easy. Being able to whip the bag on and off the bike for access in your tent, bothy, or at a cafe stop makes life much easier. The roll-top, internal access zip and side pocket are a perfect balance of access, security and weather protection. Fitting clip-style lights to the rear of the bag is quick, and as there's a fair bit of inherent rigidity, they stay facing traffic.
Tailfin do some nifty accessories to enhance the functionality of your Trunk Bag. There's a £20 light mount that fixes underneath the rear of the Trunk Bag, where you can then fit a seatpost-mount light that would otherwise be obscured. There are two fabric loops at the rear for attaching lights and six reflective straps. There's also a £20 cargo mount with triple bosses that lets you carry a large bottle or item horizontally underneath the Trunk Bag, either strapped directly or in a cage. Depending on your trip's needs, these can be quickly added or removed using a T25 Torx.
Tailfin offers a 5-year warranty on all their gear and parts if you break anything. If you trash your bag or rack, there's also a 30% crash-replacement discount.
Overall the Trunk Bag is a class act that perfectly fits into the Tailfin ecosystem of products.