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Porcelain Unicorn Hunter
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Discussion Starter #1
There's lots of discussion here about what to put in the bag, but I think there is a lot to be said about the bag/backpack its self. Are there any that stand out to you guys? What materials and features would be most suitable for the possibility of having to live out of this bag indefinitely?

My take: moderate capacity internal frame bag, with removable daypack, made out of a water resistant material. Maybe an abrasion resistant nylon with an interior plastic coating.

I also like Moon Bow Gear's Gearskin backpack system. They do not really constrain the volume or dimensions of the pack. Being custom tailored doesnt really hurt either.
 

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Woman Hater
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I have two rucks...a Maxpedition Vulcan II that has 2810 cubic inches. This is by far the largest in capacity for a 3 day bag. One can update it to carry more as I have done by attaching 2 kifaru bags that are 650 cu inches, and then a Maxpediton Proteus with 285 cu inches on the rear. This gives me a whopping payload if I need to extend my stay more than 3 days. I used this very pack in the service when on forward ops.

For a few months duration, I use a Mountainsmith Circuit 3.0 with about 5800 cu inches. This is an internal frame expedition pack, very well padded, light weight, non rippable (it can be if you try) ballistic material. I chose this over my bergen which is way heavy when empty and a ton when loaded.
 
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I can vouch for Kifaru military packs. Have two. The Marauder, at 2,500ci with waistbelt, and the 1,000ci E&E. The E&E can be piggybacked to the Marauder quickly and easily, or dropped just as quickly. The E&E can be used alone as a day pack. Both will take water bladders.

The Marauder also has the Kifaru gun bearer option so I can have both hands free and still have my rifle ready to go. I also got the cargo chair option on the Marauder so I can carry awkward loads or just pile more things on. The straps will take far more than I can carry on the cargo platform. Even with the E&E piggybacked to the Marauder, there is still plenty of room on the cargo shelf for additional items. I plan to carry my sleep system and tent on the shelf.

So I have the capacity of a much larger pack while maintaining a relatively small size when the extra capacity isn't needed. Still playing with the final pouch layout, since it is so versatile. At the moment I have two 2-quart canteens, one on each side of the pack down low, a large FAK above on one side, and a stiffened SAW magazine pouch on the other side used as a utility pouch.
 

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Animis opibusque parati
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364 Posts
Kelty

"having to live out of this bag indefinitly"

I dont know about that ?:confused:

Nonetheless,

I think most are stuck in corner over a bag. Sure would we all like to run around with Kifiiru's custom fitted, sure. Not to many can afford that kind of luxury. So we compromise and find a pack that fits our needs yet is something we can count on.

I carried a Jansport for about 6 years. it was a great pack but I needed something bigger.

I settled on a Kelty Coyote. I liked having both front and top load, plus the size was just about right.











I think above all, no matter brand, style, size, shape or color......It has to fit!!!:eek:
 

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Woman Hater
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I don't know anyone who has ever lived out of a bag indefinitely. I think it would drive someone to drinking right quick. Even in combat, Long Range Recon, you aren't living out of it indefinitely. Sure there is a chance you may stay in the bush longer than anticipated, but there are ways of supporting yourself or team when it comes to full term living. The longest time given for living out of a ruck was by a fella I knew who was SAS and he was lost in the field and behind enemy lines. No modes of communication until the right opportunity, for him it was 11 months. I had one mission that called for me to stay 2 months, but it turned into 6 months and in civvie mode, I did 10 months backpacking some of the fine trails in the US.
 
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Porcelain Unicorn Hunter
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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I really didnt mean you would literally be living out of the bag indefinitely, just that the bag should last somewhere near indefinitely, with somewhat regular usage. In my brain, in the bug out situation I have fabricated, a good pack should still be servicable after my wanderlust has delivered me to my destination.

Sorry for the weird wording, it didnt convey the meaning i intended it to i guess.

There are lots of great hiking packs, that i cannot see lasting any amount of time under strain, but then the military packs ive used lack the ergonomics to be tolerable for longterm use. They feel like 400lb cactii attached to your back with meat hooks.

As for the suggestions... the large kifaru packs look great, and if by some chance i ended up with one, i would certainly use it, but i cannot really justify spending such a large portion of my projected kit cost on the pack alone.

The coyote looks like a great pack, but I really do not like the imposed organization of space that lots of popular backpacks have. I always end up not using the tiny pockets in them, using stuff sacks and layering to organize my junk, and I imagine it results in quite a bit of the space the bag was intended to provide going to naught.

The kifaru hauler seems to follow a similar principal as the Gearskin system I refered to in my original post. They too are custom fitted, and the price is about half that of the hauler. Granted, it seems ill suited for hauling game, or the like, but for a moderate sized kit, I think it would fare well. You could conceivably just use a garbage bag as the main body of the pack, or your tarp, or Your bivy, and in dry conditions, a sleeping bag.

I am not entirely sure of the durability of gearskin, as it seems to be intended for ultralight backpacking. A garbage bag definitely would not be a very rugged container to use. But its an interesting one none the less.
 

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i have a large alice pack as my main bag, and i keep a small rucksack in it to use for short hiks or scouting.
 

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Woman Hater
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You may want to check out the Maxpedition Vulcan II. With the 2810 standard cu inches, it is (from what I have found and vigorously searched for) the highest in that amount for a 3 day pack. Now with saying that, you can get the kifaru long side pouches which add 600 + more space if you so need it. I swear by Madpedition products because I had a couple items save my life. Link for the pack is below.

http://www.maxpedition.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp?idcategory=12&idproduct=114
 
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Ready for the big "push"
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Hey Rprecision, where did you find that Kelty Coyote in Mossy Oak? I've been looking online and the only colors I can find for sale are red or blue.

Thanks.
 
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Animis opibusque parati
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Hey Rprecision, where did you find that Kelty Coyote in Mossy Oak? I've been looking online and the only colors I can find for sale are red or blue.

Thanks.
I got lucky and found one on clearence at Sportsmans Warehouse

Not a bad deal for 110.00/

Before that I had never seen one myself ?? :eek:
 

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I've used the Kelty Redwing 3100 and Kelty Durango 5900 for quite some time, but I have gone back to the medium (warm weather) and large ALICE pack (cold weather). But this time I am using an Ali-Pad, produced by High Speed Gear Inc., that I have just recevied a few days ago. So far I am very pleased and the padding has breathed new life into the ALICE pack system for me. One of the reasons I went back to ALICE is because I do not trust zippers on my pack. You never know when they might fail.
 

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On till the break o dawn
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If anybody's interested in the Blackwater 3 day long range patrol packs, CDNN sports is selling them for 100 bucks. 3100 ci capacity, tons of MOLLE straps for ammo pouches, first aid pouches, ect ect. They're a bit heavy weighing in at almost 10 pounds, but I've had mine for a year and can carry ANYTHING I need in it, as long as I can handle the weight. They have an internal frame, waist strap/sternum, hydration system compatible, and I've used mine for tons of backpacking trips in the high sierra's last year and this past winter, and had no issues with it. From what I understand they aren't being produced right now, and are usually 200+ dollars, but http://cdnnsports.com has them for 100 bucks if anybody's interested.
Pics are from my phone

 

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This is mine. Its a large mil-surplus molle ruck. I haven't taken it out and put it through the paces yet. I know it will handle the abuse but I'm not sure about how comfortable it will be after hours of hiking. Other than that, my only complaint is the lack of pockets.

Picture is from my phone.
 

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Porcelain Unicorn Hunter
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115 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Thats a nice bag agentz, thats more along the lines of what id be interested in. 10lbs is kind of heavy, but then its a 50 liter cordura bag. I think i might go for one of those. I was considering a 60 liter osprey waypoint, but those jokers cost like 250 bucks, and this looks like a much more resilient bag. Plus, if i actually need the extra 10 liters, the buttpack on that site has male molle attachment points so it'll clip right onto the ruck.
 

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On till the break o dawn
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Yeah it's a bit of a pain when fully loaded, but as long as you keep your heavy stuff forward and high it's not so bad, especially with the waist and sternum straps. Plus there's openings for my radio antenna and my camelback tube on either side. It's good to go!
 
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