Chrome Lieutenant Rolltop Messenger Bag Review


The Lieutenant rolltop messenger bag from Chrome is versatile, stylish and is waterproof inside and out. The fact that it is a rolltop means it can handle a variety of different sized cargo that is easy to get to. It has dual waterproof compartments that keep the wet and dry cargo separate. It will keep your items dry if it is rainy and we love the fact that it doubles as a portable cooler for our Pliny. The iconic Chrome buckle also serves as a bottle opener!

We tested the Chrome Lieutenant for months and it has proven to be very durable on our commute rides, whether that commute was by pedal power or by motor bike. The two external pockets are easy to get to and provide easy and quick access to tools, wallets, phones and other small items. And on those odd days when we got stuck at the office late, there is a handy loop between those two pockets (just above the red Chrome logo) for our blinky.

Although we were initially concerned with how secure the velcro closure would be, we never once had it come loose on us. The Lieutenant will fit up to a 17″ Macbook Pro and we regularly carried our laptop in it (with a sleeve, not included). Other cargo options could include your favorite beverage of choice and ice to keep it cool (this method also serves as a way to keep the rider cool on hot days.)

The construction of the bag is weatherproof 1000 denier Cordura outer shell and waterproof 1800 denier military grade truck tarpaulin liner with bar welded seams on the inside. The shoulder strap is nice and large and contains EVA foam for padding. There is a cross-chest load stabilizer for increased stability however we would have also preferred the option to run the strap around the waist (not just under the arm) for those mad dashes to catch the bike car on Caltrain. The only other thing we would add would be a carry handle for those times when you remove the bag from your back and just need to move it from place to place without actually wearing it.

The bag is pretty big, which is always hard to tell from product photos, so we’ve included some shots of the Lieutenant while being carried. The physical dimensions are 21.5” wide, 15” high, and 5” deep with a carrying capacity of 26 liters. At 3.4 lbs, the bag is a bit hefty but that’s the price you pay for the cool hardware.

Best of all, the Chrome Lieutenant is part of the Heritage Line from Chrome, which are all made by hand in Chico, CA. To back up that hand made quality, Chrome offers the best warranty in the business. The Chrome Lieutenant is guaranteed for life!

About the author: Gregg Kato

Gregg Kato studied journalism and broadcasting in college while working many different jobs including deejaying, driving a forklift and building web sites (not all at the same time). Kato enjoys riding local Santa Cruz trails. Besides being an avid mountain biker, he is also a motorcycle fanatic. Two wheels, one Passion.

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  • Tina Ingle says:

    Love all the special features and uses you pointed out, Gregg. We’re sold—Chrome pays such attention to detail.
    CORDURA(R) Brand
    Account Manager

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