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Oxford Atlas straps review | Are they better than Rok Straps?

Consumer Editor of Bennetts BikeSocial



Oxford Atlas straps review vs Rok Straps_32


Date reviewed: January 2024 | Tested by: John Milbank | Price: From £14.99 |


The Oxford Atlas straps are self-tensioning, adjustable straps that let you carry almost anything on your bike. Priced at £14.99 to £24.99 per pair they offer good value, but how well do they compare to the Rok Straps that they’re so similar too? There’s no doubt that this design of strap is much better than a standard webbing or ratchet strap as it stays tight whatever you’re tying down, so I’ve taken a close look to find out whether these Oxfords are a great alternative, or if you should stick to the originals…


  • Useful lengths

  • Easy to tuck under the seat

  • Good value

  • Elastic not as stretchy as Rok Straps

  • End loops easy to muddle up



The Oxford Atlas straps are available in grey, black or green, 26mm or 17mm wide, in lengths of 1.2m or 2.0m.

At one end is a length of webbing strap with an elastic section, which is joined to the other end that’s adjustable for length by a plastic ‘B-clip’ buckle or a metal ‘G-hook’.

The ‘G-clip’ versions are slimmer and more exotic looking than the standard plastic ‘B-clip’ buckles, but they can be a little fiddlier to use as the strap is retained a little too well.

In case you’re wondering, the 25mm G-clips will fit onto Kriega luggage, but the clips used by Kriega are less prone to catching on themselves when you’re separating them.


The G-clips are secure, but the hooked end can make them a little fiddly to remove. The clip on the 17mm strap has a bit more room around it than the one on the 26mm, making it slightly less awkward. Compared to the Kriega clips, the Oxford is much harder to use. The Oxford clips will hook onto Kriega luggage, but I’ve yet to find any major benefit to doing this as only one half of the Oxford strap has the clip. Still, buying a pair of them could provide a solution for some users.


Most buyers will probably opt for the plastic buckles, but the G-clips will likely offer some benefits when combined with Oxford’s very impressive-looking new Atlas luggage, which will be hitting stores soon. I’ll update this review with any findings from that.

I left one of the plastic buckles in the freezer for four days, and while this isn’t as cold as some parts of the world can get, there was no sign of the plastic getting brittle.

The Oxford ‘B-clip’ is rated for up to 50kg of pull, while the ‘G-hooks’ are up to 70kg. In either case though, the 25mm straps are designed for a maximum load of 10kg, and the 17mm for 7.5kg.


This roll bag is strapped onto the ZX-6R with a pair of 25mm, 1.2m straps. They’re at their limit here, so for anything of this size that’s less compressible, the 2.0m straps would be essential. A point that rules out the shorter Rok Straps.


Ease of fitting

Fitting the Oxford Atlas straps to your bike is simple: each of the two halves pass through their own loops at the ends of the straps, then the two halves are fastened together before being pulled tight. Having the elastic section allows even hard objects to be strapped down securely, with no fear of them coming loose.


Fitting the Oxford Atlas straps

This short video from Oxford shows how the straps work


Oxford Atlas straps vs Rok Straps

While I’d usually reserve other products for the alternatives section below, there’s no denying that these Oxford Atlas straps are a direct competitor to the well-established Rok Straps.

Initial impressions are that the two are very similar, but it has to be said that the Rok Straps have the edge in quality, particularly the elastic itself, which has a more linear stretch.

The plastic buckles used on the Rok Straps are slightly tougher feeling than the Oxfords, with 6.1mm thick prongs versus 4.2mm, though I’d honestly be very surprised if either ever failed.


The plastic buckles used on the Oxford Atlas straps aren’t a solid feeling as those on the Rok Straps, but they’re well up to the job. The end loops of the Rok Straps are also folded and stitched, which might help them wear better but adds bulk.


Another detail is that the two end loops on the Rok Straps are stitched at the tops of the loops, which makes it neater when the strap is passed through and potentially reduces wear to the edge of the strap. However, the Rox Strap’s end loops are more bulky, which can make it harder to pass them through smaller openings, like those on my Givi Trekker luggage.

The adjustable webbing strap on the Oxfords has the same size loop at both of its ends, which can make it confusing which to use. This is a problem as if you tie through the wrong one, the buckle doesn’t hold the strap tight when you pull the other end. On the Rok Straps, the end that you pass the strap through is obvious, with the other being a smaller loop that doesn’t have the stitch in it – it’s just there to pull the strap tight.

The end that’s meant to have the strap passed through on the Oxford has the warning label sewn onto it.


This is the pull-loop on an Oxford Atlas strap. If I’d used this one to pass the strap through and secure it, it wouldn’t have worked. I’d like to see Oxford halve the size of this loop in order to make it easier to identify in use, and it’d also then be perfect for wrapping around the strap when it’s rolled up, to keep it tidy


The lengths of the Oxford straps are advertised in their ‘unstretched’ state, while Rok Straps states what they’ll reach up to. I only have the 25mm Rok Strap to hand, but the length shown below is before it’s stretched, so a more useful comparison.

Oxford Atlas straps

Rok Straps

26mm x 2.0m £24.99


26mm x 1.2m £17.99

25mm x 1.2m £26.99

17mm x 2.0m £17.99


17mm x 1.2m £14.99

16mm x 0.9m (estimate) £21.99


12mm x 0.7m(estimate) £18.99


The ends of the Oxford straps pass easily through these retainers on my Givi Trekker top box, but the Rok Straps are too bulky thanks to the cinched loop in the end


Personally, I think that Oxford has chosen the lengths of its straps well for motorcycles. The 1.2m unstretched size of the Rok Straps can be limiting at times, and if you’re buying the more narrow straps for a motorcycle, the Oxfords are a more useful length than the Rok Straps, and £7 (32%) cheaper.

Unless I had limited space in which to tuck them, I’d go for the wider straps for the additional strength; the 1.2m Oxford 26mm straps are £9 (34%) cheaper than the equivalent Rok Straps.

Of course, for £24.99 you can get the 2.0m Oxfords, so while you’ll have extra spare material to tuck out of the way, the additional versatility makes sense to me, and these are still £2 (7%) cheaper than the 1.2m Rok Straps.


I checked the straps for resilience in the elastic


In use, the Rok Straps have a more elastic feel, and looking at ONLY the stretch section, this is how they compare:


Oxford Atlas 26mmx1.2m

Rok Strap 25mm x 1.2m




Maximum stretch







Clearly the Rok Straps have more elasticity to them, and the additional give is far more noticeable across the stretch, whereas the Oxfords get a lot ‘harder’ feeling as they’re pulled.

I also tested the straps for their resilience by leaving weights hanging off them for a week. It’s very important to understand that the Rok Straps may well have already stretched as they’re not brand new, but the Oxford’s elastic section went from 166mm long to 172mm.

Rok Straps offer a lifetime guarantee, though Oxford’s returns tend to be very good through its dealer network.


Four alternatives to the Oxford Atlas straps

Oxford’s business was built on motorcycle luggage, and these straps are part of the exciting new Atlas range due shortly. How vital they are to that kit remains to be seen, but here are some other options…

  • Rok Straps. These really are the benchmark for self-tensioning straps, and the choice of many riders. They’re only 1.2m long (stretching to 1.5m), which is usually enough, but the Oxford’s 2.0m option has the advantage. Read our review of the Rok Straps here.

  • Wrapties. These are fairly compact and versatile, with sections of Velcro over a long length of elastic strap. With some advantages over the Oxford Atlas / Rok Straps style, they’re worth considering. Read our full review of the Wrapties here.

  • Andy Strapz. These are basically long, elasticated straps with large Velcro patches to secure them. They can be a little awkward to use though. Read our full review of the Andy Strapz here.

  • Bungee cords. Yeah, bungee cords can work, but you need to pick the right length, and they’re surprisingly dangerous. According to a study in 2001 by the American Academy of Opthalmology, Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia alone treated 67 patients over a five-year period who had suffered moderate to severe eye injuries caused by bungee cords. Be particularly careful of the metal hooks straightening themselves out, then whipping into you. Oh, and you might scratch your bike, which is even worse!

These are just four of many alternatives – you can find all the motorcycle luggage we’ve tested here and be sure to regularly check for the discounts available through Bikesocial membership.


You never know what you might need to carry…


Oxford Atlas straps review: Verdict

For tucking under your bike’s seat, it’s hard to think how the 17mm Oxford straps could be beaten as they’re so compact, yet still a useful length at 1.2m or 2.0m before they’re stretched.

When it comes to the 26mm straps, comparisons with the Rok Straps are unavoidable, and the Oxfords don’t have quite the same quality, but on the other hand they’re significantly cheaper, and you can get them in 2.0m lengths, which could make a real difference.

An original idea? No, but thanks to the longer lengths available and the flat end loops, Oxford has managed to improve on a brilliant design while also offering it at a lower price.


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