Friday, April 28, 2017

Boreas Sapa Trizip

As evidenced by the dead link on my previous trizip musings, Boreas once again discontinued their trizip offering.

When asked at a trade show the response from a Boreas employee was that it was removed from the line because the Boreas designer and Dana Gleason are "good friends."

What I read into it is that MR didn't mind so long as their focus was on military and hunting sales, but now that MR has switched focus back to a recreational pack line the Boreas was much more of a direct competitor.

If this is in fact what happened this could be a comforting case of mutual respect and accommodation that is often all too lacking in the outdoor gear industry.

But on the other hand, it appears to still be for sale in Germany: Sapa trek

Saturday, April 22, 2017

eBay find: T3 Tora Bora Pack

The trizip is spreading.

I assume this pack has been out for awhile but I only here about most things when they trickle down to eBay:

Appears to be a stripped-down trizip bag, but with a worrisome omission of front compression.

Uses non-waterproof zippers, but they at least appear to be good #10s

This one is on some kind of updated ALICE frame, but it doesn't appear to be either the Tactical Tailor or TAG version judging from the flat crossmembers. Possibly LBT?

The belt and shoulder straps seem to share a lot of DNA with the now discontinued TAG ALICE stuff, I wouldn't be surprised if they manufactured these for T3.

As evidenced by the T3 homepage, the belt is both ALICE and MOLLE compatible, the version on their site ships with a Down East frame. If more ALICE upgrade makers built their belts this way there would be a lot more good MOLLE retrofit options.

Due to the lack of mention I think it is safe to say this design is not under license from Mystery Ranch. Since I do not believe the trizip is patented it is basically fair game, but it is still a bold move in a segment of the industry traditionally quite sensitive to IP and reputation in general.

The one real difference I spy between this design and a Mystery Ranch is the addition of a zipper pull at the bottom of the vertical zipper, allowing access to the bottom of the pack without opening the whole front.

I have no time table on such a prediction, but it certainly seems likely that this form of pack opening will continue to spread until someday it may even be considered a normal sight.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

eBay find: More FILBE prototypes

Found some more for sale.
The first is just a carbon copy of the large MOLLE II ruck in coyote, the second is the missing-link pack I posted about last time:

Monday, September 12, 2016

eBay find: Gregory External Frame

The only specimen I've ever seen, an external pack frame that I assume was not purpose built for a pack bag, but I'm assuming is ALICE compatible.

Probably most similar to a Mystery Ranch NICE frame as a compact, flat pack-board with modern internal frame suspension on it.

Very complex design typical of Gregory, but without some of the details you'll find on many of Gregory's tactical offerings. Still has the usual plastic external hipbelt stiffener and grippy lumbar pad. Appears to be for an Israeli contract?

It appears the hard plastic used as part of the structure is vulnerable to cracking.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

And Wander pockets

And Wander is a very intriguing brand that I appreciate.

External pocket bags give more room for pocket expansion without compressing the leg like internal pocket bags do. Also note the dart in the pocket bag for more space.

These would be snaggy enough I don't know that'd I'd want to use them, but I appreciate the idea.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

eBay find: Mystery Ranch/Jansport hybrid

MR crew cap mounted to a Jansport K2 frame. Wouldn't have guessed that they were compatible, apparently the old Jansport frame width is similar to an ALICE. I can't remember what the seller said he was hauling in the pack, but it was obviously acidic.

Massive damage to the center flap/bag:

Frame fit is surprisingly good:

Monday, August 29, 2016

eBay Find: Velvet MR trizip

Certainly one of the more unusual MR packs I've come across, I can only assume it was a special run for some urban or fashion brand:

Notice the impression left from the QR buckle.