The Zixtro Spark from Alt Gear is a pretty good frame bag. You get a good amount of room in the bag and a nice looking exterior design. The styling on this bag is more in line with mountain bikers rather than commuters if you’re paying attention to that sort of thing. If you’re looking for a good frame bag to store your gear, then read on!
The Zixtro Spark, like it’s little brother the Birdie, is water resistant to keep rain out of your bag. From the moment I opened up the Spark, my eyes caught the large zipper grips. My first thought was, “Well, that’s a bit excessive.” And then I figured that this is most likely very handy when you’ve got your full fingered mountain biking gloves on. After using the zippers, I love them. I like that they’re easy to grab. The oversize grip is also handy for when you need to grab something out when you’re on the go. It might be bad form to suggest this, but what the hey. If you have your cell phone in the bag and it’s ringing, you can easily reach in and grab it.
When I was opening the bag, I expected it to open just a bit more. It seemed that the design should allow for this, but it felt like it was catching on something. I think that if the zippers wrapped a bit further back, you would be able to open the case a bit more. Both on and off the bike, I feel that the case should be able to open up a bit more than it does.
Once I looked inside the bag, I liked the layout for your tools and other belongings. The case has a designated spot for your multi-tool…as long as it fits. I’ve got a Topeak Alien and it was too big to fit inside the designated spot. Sort of a poor waste of space at this point for me. You can’t remove the walls to make room for something else.
The construction of the Spark seems lower quality than that of the Birdie. The Birdie’s interior felt like the cloth was better adhered and more durable than the Sparks. This is only my gut feeling and time will be the better decider in this case. The exterior is a much better build quality than the inside. The seams are nicely done and the zipper is waterproof which earns this case some bonus points. That’s one point where some companies would have skipped over, but Alt-Gear put in the extra bit to get waterproof zippers and I think it adds a lot.
The Spark installs very easily onto your bike. Just slip the included Velcro straps through the loops on the bag and slide them around your frame. Fasten everything up and you’re ready to ride. Keep in mind, though: Easy on, easy off.
Check out the video below to see how it looks installed.
Disclaimer: This is not a paid review. Alt-Gear contacted me and asked if I would review some of their gear. This review is as unbiased as a review can get when something new is given to you for free. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.