Searching the web for a swing arm bag popped up a million and one different options - from cheap-as-chips pleather Chinese factory jobs to handmade leather pieces of art. The former were a bit too generic looking for my taste and the latter were just a bit out of my price range - I am a tight Yorkshireman after all. And I pretty much just wanted a stash bag - not a money bag!
I eventually found something that jumped out from the rest - the cool, military looking Biltwell Exfil-7. It comes in Black or OD Green.
Here's the press specs from Biltwell:
Main: 11" wide x 5.75" deep x 4.75" wide
Large pocket: 9.75" wide x 5.75" deep with 8.0" opening
Small pocket: 5.75" wide x 4.25" deep with 4.5" opening
The only problem I had, was that every pic and review that I found had the Exfil-7 mounted as either a fork bag or a sissy bar bag. And since I don't have a sissy bar anymore (to be honest - I've hardly got a rear fender anymore), I figured I'd give it a bash - if it didn't fit where I wanted, it could always go on the forks.
And whaddaya know - it fit!
The bag is MOLLE city - there's loops of it and attachment points everywhere. This and the 4 reinforced leather fastening straps definitely help with different mounting options.
This is how I mounted to the swingarm using 3 of the leather straps.
In addition to the main storage, there are 2 further pockets - a large one at the rear and a small slip pouch in the lid. With the bag swingarm mounted, the rear needs stretching out a bit to access. The zip is also touching the battery cover - this could be a concern if you're worried about a bit of rubbing. The small slip pouch is intended for slipping in a bit of paperwork - passports etc. A small phone would also fit in here. Although, if you've got a modern gigantic smartphone - it might not be the best fit.
The two large retention straps on the front help cinch the load down, but can also be used to hold a rolled blanket / jacket / small tent. I imagine this would be easier to do when the bag is fork or sissy mounted though.
The 7 in the name is due to the fact you can fit 7 cans of beer inside. This is cool in a marketing kinda way, but unless you're a bit of a p***head - you'll probably use it to dump stuff you need in there.
I use it to keep my glucose tablets, Vango Pac15 Folding Rucksack, Revision Ant Goggle Case and my Maxpedition Micro Pocket Organiser.
I can fit in some waterproof overtrousers too.
I've been running with this bag for a couple of months now and I like it a lot. It looks cool, does the job and gets a few compliments too. It's not too big and not too small. If you want something different to all the leather-look options, I'd recommend it. My main bugbear is the straps. The leather and nickel-plated buckles don't really go with the military-theme of the bag. It's a bit of a swings-and-roundabouts situation though - any kind of nylon strap/plastic clip combo probably wouldn't have the same security when fastened up. No one wants to pop a clip and lose a bag blasting down the motorway.
I also wish they'd lined the entire interior in orange - not just the back and underside of the lid. Other than that, it's a cool bag.
It might seem a bit pricey at first, when you can pick up cheap MOLLE pouches everywhere, but once you price up a decent-branded pouch then factor in the cost of 4 leather straps, I think you'd be in the same price range anyway. And you've got the reliable name of Biltwell behind the product too.
I got mine from AR Harley. Get yours HERE.
And, if you are heading out on a party roadtrip - get those 7 beers thrown in there. Your favourite bottle of party liquid and drinking mug will squeeze in there too!