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Maxpedition Neatfreak Organizer Milspecmonkey Review

Discussion in 'Gear Reviews' started by milspecmonkey, Oct 14, 2007.

  1. milspecmonkey

    milspecmonkey Loaded Pockets

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    [img width=640 height=500]http://www.milspecmonkey.com/pouches/maxpedition-neatfreak-front1.jpg[/img]

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    DIM: Main: 11" (L) x 9" (W) x 3" (Thick)

    With a quick overlook of the Neatfreak, the hard use every day carry (EDC) user seems to be the demographic the design caters to, however some extra features allow dual use for MIL/LEO applications. The overall shape is similar to a Remora, but they are quite different pieces of kit.

    Core features on the exterior include a non-slip covered handle on top and long webbing strips on the side which can also be used as side carry handles. The frontal upper right has a snap to secure the pull ties of the zippers to the main pouch. D-rings on both upper sides are the main connection points for the shoulder strap, but can also be used as alternate connection points when mounting to other gear. The shoulder strap is done in the style common to versipack line that is 1.5", uses plastic snap hooks and includes an adjustable / removable shoulder pad. The back has a pretty fancy setup to connect to belts or PALS webbing. Integrated with a large sleeve pocket are 2 long vertical webbing strips and 2 horizontal strips all with velcro to create secure loops. The upper part of this area has a sewn small webbing loop to be another tie down point. The pictures likely describe this a lot better than my words.

    On the front side is a flap with a thin zippered pocket and a PALS matrix of 4 channels and 2 rows. The extra loop velcro under the PALS is to interface with Maxpedition sheath products. When the flap is lifted up the big frontal mesh sleeve pocket is accessible. The flap connects to the mesh sleeve with velcro and the mesh sleeve is held down to the pouch with a inner velcro flap. I was a little confused about the inner velcro flap at first, but I can see where it allows for closure while more goods are in the mesh pocket. I'll note here that the mesh pocket is big and useful, but having the PALS flap be held down by a small velcro area is a little unsecure. The pouch won't be harmed by use, but the flap will likely be "floppy" if other pouches are attached the the PALS flap and used during heavy movement. If you only plan to wear the pouch at a walking pace, then don't worry about it.

    After opening up the main double zippers we get to the pocket fiesta of the inside. The Neatfreak zippers go down pretty far, but not enough to call it clamshell style. The back interior consists of: a large expandable depth sleeve pocket with velcro webbing strap, a medium sized thin sleeve, and 2 tall pockets about flashlight sized. The main large back sleeve with the strap can hold a lot more than it looks.The interior back side has a similar, yet still unique layout of: a plastic lanyard clip on thin webbing, large back sleeve, medium sleeve with a little expansion, 2 tall flashlight sized pockets with velcro flaps which also have half tall pockets attached to the bottom area of each, and an extra shorter pocket with some expansion on the side. The velcro flaps can be used to cover both the tall and short flashlight sized pockets, or just the tall ones. The flaps are kinda meh, since they are just raw velcro. I would have liked them more as webbing with velcro sewn on. As is, they will still secure objects inside. In the middle of the inside is the cool modular and removable divider velcro panel. One side is all loop velcro for modular attachments / pouches while the other side is 1 medium sleeve and 2 half-size sleeves good for small papers or pens. Depending how one uses the panel, they can go for more EDC carrying capacity or spice it up with a modular holster for some CCW action.

    For upgrades I'd like side lower D-rings like the Remora so I can wear the neatfreak upright chest mounted. The addition would still allow room for the side handles. For small picky stuff I'd still like to see more color coordination where the Khaki version has matching zippers and d-rings instead of black. The maxpedition logo is also sewn on the flap velcro which will cause a closure connection problem if the front mesh pocket is filled up. Although I need to test it more, I worry the back attachment straps won't be very comfortable against my body when carrying the Neatfreak for long periods.

    The end result? Well you can carry a crapload of flashlights / multitools / folding knives / and small papers. PDAs, MP3 players, and other small electronics will also fit in there well, but common tools like pliers and drivers are harder to put in unless accommodating pouches are added to the velcro panel. For the larger or odd-shaped items, the velcro panel can be taken out to allow full carrying potential in the middle inside of the Neatfreak. If you want a mean EDC gadgeteer pouch or a large organizer for your packpack, I suggest you check the Neatfreak out. For those with more tactical needs, the Neatfreak also makes for a pretty decent medic or E&E bag.
    http://www.maxpedition.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp?idcategory=14&idproduct=58
     
    amdmaxx likes this.
  2. Valerian

    Valerian Tea-powered admin

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    Nice and thorough review!

    I just wanted to say, that when I first saw the NeatFreak in the Maxpedition catalog, I thought it looked awesome and I immediately wanted one. But I couldn't think of any real purpose I could use it for, so I delayed and postponed it. Then I saw it on special offer at a web-store, so I got one to try it out. And I still couldn't think of any purpose I could use it for. I think it's too big for an organizer, but too small for a stand-alone bag. Furthermore, I found the interior of the NeatFreak a bit intimidating. All those small pockets... So many, and so small. I don't carry that many small items, so it just didn't work for me. In the end, I returned it and got an FR-1 instead, which I'm much happier with. But if you have a lot of small and loose stuff that you want to carry around, the NF might still be a great bag for you.
     
  3. rushane

    rushane Loaded Pockets

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    Very nice! I need one.
     
  4. John Frederick

    John Frederick Loaded Pockets

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    I agree with everything Valolammas said. I love mine but have no real use for it. I found myself adding unneeded small items to the bag just to use all the pockets. I also think it needs a more traditional PALS webbing set-up on the back side.
     
  5. rnst

    rnst Empty Pockets

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    Got mine about two weeks ago and I am still loading it up. First off, attached my 5.11 cell phone case to the webbing so my phone is readily available. Inserted a large EDC in one pocket (ZT 301), Surefire E2D in another, spare batteries and bulb in another, Leatherman tool plus screw driver adapters as well. It's still a light carry and most of the stuff hanging off my belt is now concealed in the bag. Still lots more room for PDA, iPod and whatever I think I might need on a daily basis.
     
  6. griz

    griz Empty Pockets

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    Great review. All those pictures are superb. O0
     
  7. baliguy76

    baliguy76 Guest

    Great review, how long have you been writing them for?
     
  8. ghbrumbaugh

    ghbrumbaugh Loaded Pockets

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    MilSpec,
    Just wanted to say thanks! Your review was one on the first and by far the best review on the NeatFreak I found. It helped me get the perfect edc bag. Needless to say it's a NeatFreak. Now it just need a monkey patch! ;D
     
  9. zshiner

    zshiner Loaded Pockets

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    This was a great review of the Maxpedition Neat Freak. So consider this a bump too.

    One question that wasn't answered was -

    What is the typical and maximum thickness of this bag? I understand that what is stuffed in it really influences thickness - but I was looking for a general idea.

    Anyone care to measure theirs?


    Thanks - KM
     
  10. UNIT24UK

    UNIT24UK Empty Pockets

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    Good review but looks a lot bigger than i had in mind,something half the size with molle would be perfect ,then i can carry my minimal gear ,phone,mp3,torch then attach it to my pack when on days out with more kit
     
  11. ironraven

    ironraven Empty Pockets

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    Spec Ops Brand Op Ord pouch.
     
  12. mudra

    mudra Empty Pockets

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    I have been using my Neatfreak as a "man-purse" for holding the stuff I want with me at all times (phone, wallet, meds, etc.). During the half of the week that I need to carry more stuff, I remove the strap and slide it into the front compartment of a Maxpedition Pygmy Falcon backpack where it fits pretty neatly. From the backpack I can access the full contents of the Neatfreak without removing it from the pack. This arrangement saves a lot of shuffling of items from purse to backpack, something I used to do before arriving at this setup.
     
  13. bltkmt

    bltkmt Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks for the review! Wonderful info and pictures.

    Question: in comparing this to the Spec-Ops Pack-Rat...I notice this has a top handle to carry (if you don't want to use the shoulder strap)...does the Pack-Rat have a handle?
     
  14. mudra

    mudra Empty Pockets

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    My Pack-Rat has a similar strap of webbing sewn up one side, over the top, and down the other as the Neatfreak does. So: yes, but on the Pack-Rat there isn't "padding" sewn on the "handle" part of the strap as the Neatfreak does.

     
  15. Splusmer

    Splusmer Empty Pockets

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    You know, that's a great idea. I just ordered a Neatfreak, and was thinking of some way to attach it to another bag when I needed a bigger system but the ability to quickly pull out the "murse". I hadn't considered being able to drop it into the Pygmy Falcon's front pocket... hmm, another bag in my future? :)


     
  16. mudra

    mudra Empty Pockets

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    I am insufferably proud of myself for figuring out you can do that. ;D
     
  17. bzimmerly

    bzimmerly Loaded Pockets

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    That WAS a great review! I :heart: my Neatfreak! :smitten:

    I've had mine for about two years after RoscoeBa sold me on it with her wonderful YouTube videos. --> http://www.youtube.com/user/RoscoeBa#p/search/0/oz_D2qgAkpc

    One thing I like about how the bag expands with thick stuff in the middle pockets is that it makes room on BOTH sides. I keep my Hand Sanitiser bottle on the left, and 50 feet of paracord on the other side.

    To me, it would be PERFECT if it were an inch taller, an inch wider, and an inch deeper. A "Mega-Netfreak" if you will. (So I can hold my HP Mini 110-3530 in it.) But since it isn't, I ordered the new Hazard 4 Kato.