The saddle bag I own has two elastic loops on the underside.

From reading this question on long-term storage of tubes I can see tubes don't like changing temperatures (not really a problem in Ireland as the temperature doesn't vary too drastically) or direct sunlight.

If I were to wrap the tube (to protect from the elements and sunlight), would under the saddle bag be a suitable place to store it? At the moment I keep it inside the saddle bag but I would like to have the extra bit of space if at all possible.

I only cycle ~100km per week and it's a cheap spare tube so it's easily replaceable. (Doesn't need to offer long-term protection).

  • 3
    Certainly. I'd suggest wrapping in some sort of simple cloth, vs plastic (keeping it perfectly dry is not necessary). And make sure that the straps don't cut into the tube and that vibrations won't cause abrasion. But otherwise you should be fine, for 3-6 years or so. Aug 6, 2013 at 21:58
  • 1
    Why would you want to keep the tube outside the saddle bag? If keeping it inside is an option it does the duty of protecting it from damage and direct sunlight. What else are you putting in the saddle bag?
    – sevargdcg
    Aug 6, 2013 at 21:59
  • @DanielRHicks Ah thanks a lot! The cloth isn't something I had thought of at all, but it makes sense. The straps are wide fairly soft elastic that;s not too tight so cutting shouldn't be a problem. Also I can't see vibrations causing abrasions as the only point of contact is the material underside of the saddle bag and the wrapping should be more than sufficient for protection against this.
    – Merri
    Aug 6, 2013 at 22:26
  • @sevargdcg The saddle bag is a pretty small one. It's almost full with a few essential tools, my phone and the spare tube. I would like to have a bit of extra space for some bars and also a spare t-shirt while on longer rides.
    – Merri
    Aug 6, 2013 at 22:31
  • 1
    You're going to need a pretty big bag to hold a spare t-shirt. If you wore a bike jersey it would have pockets in the rear to hold a spare t-shirt (and lots of other stuff). Aug 7, 2013 at 0:30

3 Answers 3


I'll sum up some of the comments with some concerns that you need to address:

  • Excessive moisture
  • Temperature changes
  • Abrasion and movement
  • Access

Simply wrapping the tube in something non/semi-porous and opaque will help keep it safe from the elements, but not from temperature changes, but it sounds like that's not going to be too much of a factor. You should also consider any bits of dirt, water, road, mud that are going to be kicked up from your rear wheel under the saddle bag. This could cause some excessive wear after you installed the tube in the tire unless you clean it first.

As a few of the other comments have stated, you may want to consider other means of storing your ride supplies. You've got a spare tube but do you have a pump? Is it a frame pump or small enough to store in a bag? Tire levers and a multitool are also going to take up space. I'd recommend looking at either a larger bag or purchasing something like a hydration pack (CamelBak, Dakine, Osprey, etc.) to store your tools, clothes, food, and whatever else. That way you can plan a variety of rides without needing to awkwardly stow tubes, pumps, and anything else on your bike!

EDIT: (Kudos to Chris H) If you've already got a way of storing all that,you want to make sure it is secure and protected from dirt. It doesn't need to be sealed completely, as you want to make sure any moisture such as condensation can evaporate.

  • 2
    But on the other hand, if you've already got a saddle bag, a frame pump and a bottle in a cage, strapping the tube to the bottom of the saddle bag is essentially free and adds little or no hassle at the other end. I'd just want to make sure it was really secure and protected from dirt - I could probably find a small nylon stuffsack (e.g. from an old pack away waterproof jacket) to keep it in - mud proof but not really sealed.
    – Chris H
    Aug 7, 2013 at 14:35
  • That's true. I just didn't want to assume he had all those things or knew about the alternatives, but you're very correct there.
    – Aaron
    Aug 7, 2013 at 14:45
  • @ChrisH That pretty much sums up my case perfectly! I have a pump mounted on the seat tube and a bottle cage on the down tube. For my usage under the saddle bag would be an ideal location for it, as long as it has no detrimental effects on the tube (hence the original question). I currently have it wrapped in off-cuttings from a blind, it's a fairly strong, water-resistant material. It's very secure and also the seams of the wrapping are on the saddle bag side as opposed to the back wheel side, so dirt getting in shouldn't be a problem.
    – Merri
    Aug 7, 2013 at 15:28
  • @Aaron If you could edit your answer to include the points made by Chris, I would have no problem accepting it. Thanks a lot to both of you for your advice!
    – Merri
    Aug 7, 2013 at 15:40
  • I would note that the "wrapping" should not be water-tight, but should be porous enough to allow moisture inside to evaporate. It won't hurt the tube to get wet, so long as it doesn't stay wet forever. The wrapping is primarily to protect the tube from sun and abrasion. Aug 7, 2013 at 16:21

Don't over think it. Tubes are far more robust than comments here allude to. Water does not hurt them. Chaffing might be a problem by I have seen tubes that spend years in a mountain bike saddle bag with tools and never saw anything more than cosmetic damage. Sunlight and temperature change will kill you before it damages a tube, and unlike you, tubes are cheap to replace. Dirt wipes off before install if needed. I do not believe the tube being exposed is a reason not to strap it onto the outside of the bag. As far as rubber does not loke changing temperatures - have you ever felt the heat from a car tire after a drive - every time you car heads down the road the tire temperature increases up to 25C. The effect if climate-based temperature change is overstate. While stored in direct sunlight might be a problem, it is many times the hours than a tube would be exposed to while out riding in direct sunlight.) All that is required is a regular inspection of your spare tube, (along with you brake rubber and tires), which needs to be done regardless of where it is stored and is a lot easier if its strapped to the outside.

However, strapping a tube to the outside of a bag you access often is a nuisance (ask me how I know). If not properly attached after each time you access the bag, its prone to working loose. I personally don't like things 'hanging off all over the place' - it looks untidy, and they inevitably fall off and get lost.

There are other options - a larger seat bag, using bottle holder toolbag/cage (if you have a spare mount), strapping to the frame (inside the triangle) with tape or vecro ties. If you use a water bladder, you have space for stuff in the backpack.

  • I find things strapped to the bike tend to hold dirt as well. Specially on the road bike where there are no mudguards.
    – Criggie
    Jul 26 at 8:43

One risk is losing your spare tube.

On a recent 100km trip I strapped a spare inner tube under my saddle. 25km into the ride it had already fallen off! I am now searching for a small saddle bag to use for future rides.

  • Welcome to the site - I've made a minor edit to highlight the answer which was implied but not directly stated.
    – Criggie
    Jul 26 at 8:42

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