Detailed questions from a bag aficionado
The questions below came from an experienced bag reviewer and user who saw some early marketing images - but didn't have access to the bag or even the complete website and story. Still, these were such good questions, it seemed worth sharing with everyone.
Interesting idea to switch around the roles of travel pack and day pack, with the former attached to the latter (as opposed the other way around, like Ospreys, Keltys, and a host of other companies).
yes, thanks. I kind of had the original idea from my old Jansport I've been using since 1994, that had a zip on day pack. (that was ridiculously ugly)
- One possible negative of this setup is that in full travel mode, the centre of gravity seems to be far from the wearer's back. This generally spells disaster for cary comfort.
The apparent lack of compression straps only compounds this issue.
there's some truth to this. However, another big part of the philosophy around this 'carry system' is that it is designed for minimalist travel, not camping, or toting books or bricks. When fully decked out, my system, with full water bottle, weighs 17lb/7kg. That's not a big load to ruck around. Further, and maybe more important, this bag is designed around the 95% rule of travel/commute experience. That is to say, 95% of the time, you're not carrying your bag very far or for very long. From the house to the car/taxi, from the taxi to the train/plane, from the taxi to the hotel, etc. These are usually pretty short hops, that still need a shoulder strap, but aren't requiring hip belts or swivel movement internal frames.
The fixed simple harness doesn't seem capable of carrying the full system's weight comfortably.
Again, weight isn't really that much of an issue. You are right though, that while contoured and designed for comfort, it does not have load shifters, etc. Given the designed usage, those extra functions are overkill, AND lead to more weight and dangle.
I hope that the daypack has a properly rigid framesheet and there is an option for a load bearing padded hip belt to alleviate some of the above.
There isn't a hip belt on this first model, even though there are D rings where one could be retrofitted. Again, weight and long hikes are not the use case. The day pack has a robust padding system for comfort against the back.
I reckon that the big pack attaches to the daypack via fidlock buckles at the top and directly to the harness at the bottom. Has the hardware/fabric/stitching been tested to withstand the dynamic load of a fully packed system bouncing on the back of its wearer for a long time?
you are correct - Fidlocks, 4 total, each rated to 15kg. We've tested pretty well in house and on the road. Of course, it hasn't been tested over years yet, but we stand behind our stitching.
How noisy is the bottom connection when moving with the pack? It seems to be metal again metal so how bad is the jiggling?
I like this question a lot, as I hate jingles. To your point, I, who can't even handle the sound of rubbing material while I walk, have not noticed any jingle from the strap hooks. I must admit however, I haven't spent as much time with the final hooks we used in production; the ones I've tested (from the same manufacturer) were slightly different. we will keep an ear on this issue.
The daypack seems to open only 3/4 of the way. Quite a few of us prepare a full clamshell opening. It may be difficult to make that work with external bottle pouches, but it's been done several times (see the A19 Evade for a recent example).
Another great point. Yes, it only opens 3/4s. Some of the reasons we didn't do full clam:
1. it's designed to stand up, so a fully opening bag would end up slowly opening while it stood there.
2. a key benefit of the 3/4 is the hinge we put at that point, so that the flat back hangs open, slightly like a shelf, where you can both see and toss your stuff.
3. you rightly point out that water bottle pockets become much more complicated with a clamshell. In our constant striving for lightness, we chose this style of water bottle pocket, which then works with the 3/4 open.
Is there a laptop compartment in the daypack?
there's a complete removable laptop sleeve, for 13" travel-type laptops, that is its own case. Velcro'd in so that when you pull your laptop out, it stays in... but you can remove it when you aren't traveling with a laptop. Again, thinking of small size, and lightness.
Hopefully it's externally accessible, weatherproof, fully padded and raised, otherwise you'll have people jumping on you.
it isn't 'externally accessible', no. to get to a laptop, you go in through the main zippers, and then there's the laptop sleeve. It is padded on the bottom corners, and the velcro holds it slightly raised.
Alternatively, is there an option for attaching 3rd party pouches (e.g., Tom Bihn Cache PALS, velcro, etc.)?
There isn't any real way to attach other pieces, no. I suppose if it lined up, the soft velcro strip in the bag for the laptop sleeve could hold something, but that's not really a feature.
What fabric/hardware/thread has been used?
Exterior: 2-tone PU Finished nylon 450d - Anthricite
Interior: 2-tone PU Finished nylon 210d - Spring Green
Is the construction weatherproof? If not, are there any plans to include raincovers for the system and daypack?
yes, it's PU coated for water resistance, but again, I think this is a 95% issue. while there are bike commuters who end up soaked, 95% of commuters and travelers only have to deal with water rarely, and not at a level that needs diving level seals.