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For 2020, the U/Pathfinder backpacks!

Discussion in 'Alpha One Niner (bags & gear)' started by HELM, Dec 27, 2018.

  1. HELM
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    HELM Loaded Pockets

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    I was going to put this off until later but since I have a few back to back long haul trips coming up I might as well take this opportunity to continue development of the U/Pathfinder and get it tested post haste. Since we are on a roll after the Evade 2.0 project why not keep it going ;)

    Working on my notes right now and will post the points & questions I have shortly and leave the floor to you guys as we’ve done before.

    FYI the focus for the Pathfinder will be more minimalist EDC.
     
  2. gaap master

    gaap master Loaded Pockets

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  3. Bimmer4me

    Bimmer4me Loaded Pockets

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    Hell yesss, another reason to give Helm my money...time to save back up!!!

    I wanna know what those side zippers are for between the main compartment and laptop sections.

    Thanks Helm for making shiz happen and an undoubtedly amazing product!!
     
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  4. RED-FIVE
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    RED-FIVE Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks @HELM... This should be fun...:smile_coffee:
    They look to be vertical side pockets that also have ported access to the main compartment.
     
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  5. hddeuce88

    hddeuce88 Empty Pockets

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    Looking forward to that project


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
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  6. HELM
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    @Bimmer4me, those are side zippered pockets. At the moment I store a set of padded hip belts in one (it’s that wide and deep) and in the other a flat plastic flask and a travel toothbrush set. Both have a reinforced stitched button hole on the back wall for the charging cable from a battery that is inside a side mesh pocket in the main compartment.

    I take the long haul either from DC to Tokyo or NYC to Singapore and most of what I need is travel focused and less EDC since I can’t carry tools or short blades, etc.

    I always pair the pack with a slightly modded Chio so the pack essentially is my mobile office - MBP, iPad, mouse, cables, cables and more cables & chargers, med kit, camera kit (I usually carry a Lumix, extra lens and an NVD in it), a Pelican 0915 case with all my SD cards, SIMs, etc., a watch roll and a spare set of clothes (usually TNF trainers, Icebreaker tee and Smartwool socks).

    With the exception of the iPad, I rarely take anything out during the flight. All that I need is in the Chio. If I can squeeze the Oculus Go in it for the next trip I will!
     
    #6 HELM, Dec 27, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2018
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  7. Bimmer4me

    Bimmer4me Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks for breaking it down for me Helm, this pack, for some reason slightly reminds me of the Maxpedition entity series packs but with front zippered pockets, overall I’m digging the layout (two zipper system, separate TSA laptop section organization, etc) and water resistant zippers alot! Here's a few thoughts/critiques on the U/P that you posted on FB...

    1) Can the side water bottle pockets fit a standard 32oz nalgene/hydroflask? might need some elastic (like the Topo Designs Core Pack but more robust?, maybe like the Direct Action Dragon Egg with dual elastic?) to keep some tension on the bottle so it doesn’t fall out easily?

    2) I personally think the side compression strap(s) should have SRBs instead of the g-hook as they can be cumbersome in use when in a rush

    3) I think the load lifters mounting position (on the shoulder strap) could me mounted/sewed in a little bit higher (to lessen how much lifter strap is needed and left to be managed (on the EV2 I notice i have lots of load lifter strap remaining) when in use)

    4) I noticed in the FB pics of the U/Pathfinder that the main stitching is only single stitched whereas it's double stitched on the EV2, I think the double stitching is amazing and differentiates the quality/durability of your bags well above the rest of the competition

    5) Also the hip belt looks to be fixed but I think a removable waist belt like the EV2 would be a better option for urban settings where a fixed one just gets in the way
     
    Last edited by Bimmer4me, Dec 28, 2018
    #7 Bimmer4me, Dec 27, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018
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  8. RED-FIVE
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    RED-FIVE Loaded Pockets

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    First, could you elaborate about your specific mod's, why they were needed and what purpose they serve?

    I think the pairing of the CHIO is an important aspect to consider when addressing some of the pathfinder details.

    Being a CHIO user I can understand the advantage of subdividing inflight items into a separate location. I remember from your video and discussion on how you use the CHIO. Since the UPF is stowed for the duration of the flight, The CHIO holds all of those immediate items close at hand...
     
    Last edited by RED-FIVE, Dec 28, 2018
    #8 RED-FIVE, Dec 27, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018
  9. hddeuce88

    hddeuce88 Empty Pockets

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    I may have missed it but what are we looking at for size and volume/capacity for the pack?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
  10. Bimmer4me

    Bimmer4me Loaded Pockets

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    I think it's stated as 27-28L on the FB post
     
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  11. HELM
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    HELM Loaded Pockets

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    Sorry for the delay guys. Too many YE stuff to sort out.

    Anyway, as I’ve mentioned, for all the selfish reasons I’m working this pack to primarily fit my needs. What I want and expect from a pack may not be what the masses would want but maybe it might strike a positive chord among a few of you.

    I’ve essentially minimized my EDC to fit into my Chio so what I am essentially looking to carry in a pack is primarily my mobile office plus some. Before A19 I was carrying either Tumi or Porter or Gurkha. Still none really met my needs. When I travel or cover my regular 9 - 5 I need a pack that bridges both ends of the spectrum of my work. On one end I have my meets and/or presentations and my regular attire is usually a John Smedley polo, tailored pants (or a tailored suit) and chukka boots from either Crockett & Jones, Sanders or Tods. And on the other end I find myself on the range either watching a demo or doing it myself, in a pair of Kuhl pants, Icebreaker tees and a pair of Lowas. And in between I’m hunting down any Les Mills class I can find wherever I am which means gym gear is a consideration.

    The organizer stays but the main compartment of the pack swaps out depending on the agenda for the day. If I need my MBP it stays in it’s own compartment, otherwise I leave it behind to lighten the load. The iPad Pro stays however ‘cos it’s a vital work tool for either ends. So we are are looking at the 3 separate compartments but here’s the one thing I took off the current sample, the water bottle pouches. Why? in 17 years I’ve been doing this, I personally never needed a water bottle, there’s alway water to be had wherever I was, be it Africa or Asia or South America. I carry a lightweight flat flask in case I need to fill it but with the exception of keeping it filled on a long haul flight, I rarely use it. And that stays in one of the side zippered pockets of the current sample. In a previous sample I made these water bottle pouches flat using magnets.

    [​IMG]

    So some of the questions I have swirling in my head.......

    1. Should the pack have a laptop compartment like the Evade or a flat back like the GoRuck with a false bottom?

    2. Should the iPad/tablet have a quick access pocket of its own?

    3. Should the shoulder straps be similar to EV2 or more basic with no load lifters? Option to tuck it away?

    4. How do you work out the vertical front pocket and what needs to go in there? The current organizers fit but don’t hold well.

    5. Should we keep the two mesh zippered pocket system or change it? One fabric, one mesh?

    6. Should this be as tall as the EV2 or the EV1 or somewhere in between? It needs to stay a round 21L. Would 19” be the best height?

    7. Water bottle pockets?

    8. Fabric options? Dyneema, Ballistic Nylon, ..pattern?Herringbone, Box Rip, SD Rip etc.

    9. Possible gym pack too?
     
  12. HELM
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    I’m planning a smaller volume pack, around 21L
     
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  13. HELM
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    HELM Loaded Pockets

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    @Bimmer4me

    1) Can the side water bottle pockets fit a standard 32oz nalgene/hydroflask? might need some elastic (like the Topo Designs Core Pack but more robust?, maybe like the Direct Action Dragon Egg with dual elastic?) to keep some tension on the bottle so it doesn’t fall out easily?

    The version with the magnetic button will hold a 32oz Nalgene. The thing is I wanted a flatter looking pocket and the magnet works BUT when the bottle is in there long enough and you take it out, the pocket sticks out and you have to push it back down.

    2) I personally think the side compression strap(s) should have SRBs instead of the g-hook as they can be cumbersome in use when in a rush.

    Agreed.

    3) I think the load lifters mounting position (on the shoulder strap) could me mounted/sewed in a little bit higher (to lessen how much lifter strap is needed and left to be managed (on the EV2 I notice i have lots of load lifter strap remaining) when in use)

    For a small pack, the question is whether these lifters are required at all.

    4) I noticed in the FB pics of the U/Pathfinder that the main stitching is only single stitched whereas it's double stitched on the EV2, I think the double stitching is amazing and differentiates the quality/durability of your bags well above the rest of the competition.

    It will change some in the final pre production prototype.

    5) Also the hip belt looks to be fixed but I think a removable waist belt like the EV2 would be a better option for urban settings where a fixed one just gets in the way.

    There will be webbing loops there for a removable hip belt.
     
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  14. HELM
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    I changed the position of the internal zippered sleeve pocket to the front wall and I added a padded handle, both on ballistic nylon version. I originally had an adjustable-on-the-go shoulder strap but it sucked so I took it off.
     
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  15. RED-FIVE
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    RED-FIVE Loaded Pockets

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    RE: Front Vertical Zippered Pocket...
    Helm I also own your Recon 3 minimalist pack and have been experimenting with the front vertical pocket as an admin area using some loop velcro and the Type 1 (2) panels.
     
    Last edited by RED-FIVE, Dec 30, 2018
    #15 RED-FIVE, Dec 29, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2018
  16. Jay PS

    Jay PS Loaded Pockets

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    Got my Evade 2.0 today. Outstanding quality. Where can I see photos of the Pathfinder?
     
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  17. RED-FIVE
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    RED-FIVE Loaded Pockets

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    Last edited by RED-FIVE, Dec 29, 2018
    #17 RED-FIVE, Dec 29, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2018
  18. swedishelite22

    swedishelite22 Loaded Pockets

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    Answers in red within your quote...

    Honestly, a lot of what we are talking about here is why I bought the EV2.

    I needed a backpack that provided a mobile office and something I could use for 2 days travel. I end up bouncing all over a 500k sq ft facility on a daily basis so I'm rarely at my desk. Ideally it would be (is) used for EDC when out with the family.

    20-22L packs were max'd out and uncomfortable to carry with laptop weight but I wanted as small a profile bag as possible.

    Enter the EV2 which is a little bigger and heavier than I initially wanted, but the build quality, functionality, and you/your team made it a no brainer. In the end having the space is better than not.

    The trick I guess for you in sorting through the feedback you receive is to keep this bag with its own identity so it stands on its own. All said and done, it may be better to make this something geared toward say a Realtor (100% mobile office kinda thing).
     
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  19. hddeuce88

    hddeuce88 Empty Pockets

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    I absolutely love the EV2 but I just couldn’t pull the trigger due to the weight of the bag. A 30L bag at over 4lbs., I just couldn’t imagine having to carry that around all day fully loaded. I’ve been looking more of a travel/vacation bag for years and am hoping the Pathfinder will fill the void. I was hoping this would be in the 23-25L area at around 2-2.5lbs. That would be perfect.

    With respect to the front vertical zipper compartment, can another zipper be put on the other side to allow for getting into the compartment from both sides. Us lefties need some love too.
     
  20. swedishelite22

    swedishelite22 Loaded Pockets

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    [​IMG]
     
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