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SK26 or Blade 24

Discussion in 'EDC Bags' started by Matt H., Jan 10, 2014.

  1. Matt H.

    Matt H. Loaded Pockets

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    I'm looking for an EDC backpack. I think I've narrowed it down to the GORUCK SK26 or the Arc'teryx Blade 24. They are within $20 of each other on price, so at that cost point, I'm not worried about that.

    I've had a GORUCK GR1 and thought it was great. I liked the shape and storage, although I'm not a fan of the MOLLE. I ended up selling it. I'm pretty modular with my EDC and I use smaller bags inside the larger backpack for most of my gear. I do need it to carry a laptop so I wanted the separate laptop area. I do not under any circumstances want compression straps. I'm using a Mountainsmith Red Rock 25L now, and I'm sure its a great bag, but I do not like the straps getting in the way of the zippers at all.

    I guess I'm leaning towards the SK26, but am looking for reasons to go with the Blade 24. Can anyone convince me to switch to the Blade 24, or dare I ask, another bag?
     
  2. nick nitro

    nick nitro Loaded Pockets

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    I have the goruck 1 and a Blade 21. Slightly smaller than the 24. Very different animals. As you know the goruck is a basic open bag. The blade series are more of an office organizer. I travel more with the arcteryx bag, the zippers are on the side so swinging the bag around to the front lets a person access the contents with a single hand on the move. I travel with an iPad, one days clothes, small zippered maxpedition mesh personal kit items and another with tech stuff. Bose headset and electrical outlet adaptor kit about rounds it out. It's been a good travel and office bag. Does not have a tactical look which is great is small middle eastern cities.

    A feature of the arcteryx is the very smart design in the compartment divider. They are each bellowed so that overfilling one will allow the excess to ballon into the next compartment instead of the items not fitting or shoving out the back panel which happens on every pack I have ever used. Go to military morons and read their review and why the blade series was designed.
     
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  3. Matt H.

    Matt H. Loaded Pockets

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    Its entirely possible that I guess what I'm asking is whether or not I need the organization. I already have most of my stuff in smaller bags like the Maxpedition IFAK and Eagle Creek quarter and half cubes.

    I had not seen military morons before, I'll keep that site in mind in the future as well. Thanks.
     
  4. Mester

    Mester Loaded Pockets

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    I have a couple of Goruck packs and I love the panel loading. I also have the Arcteryx blade 24. I really like the look and design of the pack. I bought it because I needed a pack to use with a suit. I used it a couple of times as a carry on bag. I never really got used to the side opening. Think it works best with flat items like laptop, books and things like that.

    But still, it's really a nice design.




    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
     
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  5. TARFU
    • In Omnia Paratus

    TARFU EDC!!!!! Junkie

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    Matt,

    It really does come down to the organization question. Also, I think the street price of the Blade will be lower. I often see them on eBay for around $125 new or lightly used.

    Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk
     
  6. twogunmojo

    twogunmojo Banned

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    you could always buy a shadow ruck 25 and a laptop sleeve from tom bihn and save yourself 100 dollars plus no molle and no compression straps or you could buy a roll top pack from topo designs..it has a laptop sleeve
    a full length zipper to allow you to access the contents without going through the roll top...
     
  7. Matt H.

    Matt H. Loaded Pockets

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    I've thought about the shadow rucks, but I think the slick rucks are a little sturdier.

    I've watched some videos on the Blade 24 and I'm thinking I'll try to find a used bag. I'm intrigued by the side loading pockets. We'll see. Any other suggestions?
     
  8. TARFU
    • In Omnia Paratus

    TARFU EDC!!!!! Junkie

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    The Tom Bihn Synapse 25 and the Camelbak Urban Assault would make excellent choices also. BTW, one thing to be careful with the Blade 24 is the narrow width of the straps. People with broad shoulders complain about that aspect of the pack. Not sure if you fall into that category, but thought it worth mentioning.
     
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  9. Matt H.

    Matt H. Loaded Pockets

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    TARFU, thanks for all of the bag reviews. I've been reading. Now I'm leaning towards the Tom Bihn, but nearly all of the. S25s are on back order until late March. :/
     
  10. Matt H.

    Matt H. Loaded Pockets

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    Also I'm 6'1", 230 so now I'm concerned with the Arc'Teryx.
     
  11. twogunmojo

    twogunmojo Banned

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    since most of your stuff is already in separate bags the travel backpack from topo might be a bit large at 30 liters but it appears to be laid out nicely with a laptop sleeve and ipad sized pockets plus should you ever want more room the trip pack attaches to the travel pack adding almost another 9 liters of room but the downside is that it is the most expensive of the ones mentioned so far..

    i have a tom bihn smart alec but i don't carry a laptop so i can't say what that feels like...my usual load out weighs at least 15 lbs and the bag works well for my needs as a daily bike commuter...i looked at the blade 24 but didn't see the dimensions listed for the bag...my smart alec has a really large profile when packed full especially with the added upper and lower pockets..
     
  12. Heavyduti

    Heavyduti Banned

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    I just sold my Blade 24 after a great deal of thought. It is a great bag and served me well as an edc and a carry on when I was going minimalist. It was even my Alaskan cruise/hike bag for a while but was truly best suited for the limited laptop/tablet go-to-a-meeting role.

    The side opening is great in the meeting role and so are the organizational pockets. The passport hidden pocket is a great idea that doesn't really work because I keep things like that on my person but still nice to have.

    The Blade 30 may be a bit more practical and is not much more bulky. I may try one soon.
     
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  13. TARFU
    • In Omnia Paratus

    TARFU EDC!!!!! Junkie

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    I thought about the Blade 30 also, but it's strap design is the same and it seems the 30 has a more open format that is more geared towards one bag travel. That's not necessarily a bad thing but I'm not sure it would make a great daily EDC bag.

    Just my two cents. I'd be interested in reading a follow-up here if you take the plunge.
     
  14. Heavyduti

    Heavyduti Banned

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    I may indeed, I've been looking at the gray or green (older and harder to find lately). I find packs are like small units of personnel; even though you have a huge organization it's the ones you are with when the 'spit' hits the fan that really count.

    Oh well if life is a buffet, these bags are a fun part of it and, generally speaking, except for our wallets no one gets hurt.
     
  15. nyckmc

    nyckmc Loaded Pockets

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    If if helps I used a blade 30 for over a year before moving to a GR1 and eventually anSK26

    The blade 30 is a great bag
    Primarily I used it for overnight travel - which would be
    Clothes or outerwear files electronics laptop etc.
    Some gear specific to my work 2 to 3 light meters and big ampprobe

    Things I liked the fold flat portion for clothes
    Contrast lining mine was red inside black outside.
    The side loaded laptop compartment
    The frame sheet kept it riged and sleek.
    Good for living out if for a few days and not being a huge bag.
    The straps while comfortable are ok not the thickest

    What I didn't like
    The lining was lightweight nylon the admin area near useless for me.
    The bag was a little delicate for my use including he zippers

    I work in television/film and broadcasting and am more then usual,
    Carrying laptop/tablet and a variety of tools and meters.
    Sometimes I am trucking rope - climbing harness/hard hat
    And or raind gear or more outerwear if it's location work

    The meters and hand tools are all in protected padded pouches and or zippers
    Klein tool or husky pouches - but they don't mix well, with light weight nylon.
    The carry can vary from day to day and loading varies in weight

    I found the goruck layout and more rugged fabric worked out better and was more well suited to the modularity of what
    I am stuck carrying.

    I also have a roil pak from trek pak I use as an insert - like a padded insert when I can o add some more protection
    To some gear.

    As for a size reference I am 5-7 and 185 lbs.
    I should mention they I am an urban commuter - and am hard on bags
    Often they are tossed in a corner on job sites they see rain snow
    Overhead bins on trains and many ,many flights and lots of walked miles. - non hiking just commute and work related.
     
  16. onebadwagon

    onebadwagon Loaded Pockets

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    Want to save some cash or give one of the Blade 24's a whirl? I've got one that I'm not using that I'll let go of for a very fair price. They really are awesome packs if you dig the form factor.
     
  17. Elduka

    Elduka Loaded Pockets

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    I just fell in love with the GORUCK while looking it up haha
     
  18. acix

    acix Loaded Pockets

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    I was in the same position as you, debating between a Blade 24 and SK26. I ended up going with the SK26 mainly because of the versatile interior storage. I use a zulu nylon gear pouch when I am going to class and need organization and pull it out if I am going on a day hike and need more interior storage. So storage may be a deciding factor for you. If you need internal organization and rarely feel like you will be needing to put larger items in the bag, the Blade may be a better choice. If you want a little more versatility the SK26 may be better, but you will have to buy some sort of internal organization system which is another $50 or $60.
     
  19. rcw357

    rcw357 Loaded Pockets

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    I own the blade 30. I don't have an opinion on the GoRuck other than it doesn't interest me at all.

    On the blade 30, I am pretty mixed on it. When I carried it, I had a change of gym clothes, large water bottle, lifting equipment (chalk, fat gripz), flashlight, some cables, battery pack, some other small items, toiletry kit, and sometimes a nexus 7.

    I have big shoulders (50in chest) so maybe this wouldn't apply to others, but I found the pack uncomfortable in the shoulder area. It was very tight. The straps are thin.

    The pack also didn't feel like it was all that big as it was nearly to capacity with that stuff. The organization methods are not done to maximize the carry space.

    I got lots of comments in the gym about the pack because of its suitcase style. One of my sisters loved that aspect of it.

    I found the pack to be well made.

    I would never carry weight with it or use it over long distances.

    Working in a business environment, by holding by the side handle, it almost looks like a big briefcase. If it could hide the shoulder straps it would easily pass as one.

    I can't recommend the pack, but I wouldn't dissuade anyone from getting it either.
     
  20. onebadwagon

    onebadwagon Loaded Pockets

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    Regarding your first point, I don't have any experience with the Blade 30, except for checking one out in a store. I have the complete opposite feelings towards the Blade 24, it's cavernous. It doesn't even make sense how much it can hold. The Blade 30 didn't do anything for me when I looked at it, so I believe you. It looked like the 30 was more travel oriented, for which I think there are better bags.


    I also have a ~50" chest, and you're 100% right about the shoulder straps being too close together, however the ones on the Blade 24 are quite padded. I didn't think there were that many differences between the two bags, but I guess it's more than it seems.