Exo vs kuiu pack

thbrock07

Junior Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2021
Messages
14
New Kuiu pros and pro lts are pretty sweet. Zippers are in better spots so you can reach spotting scope, etc. without unstrapping everything. Love the carbon fiber frame and suspension fit. Takes a while to get the fit right but I've never had any issues with them, even with heavy weight and meat hauling.
 

Marbles

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Joined
May 16, 2020
Messages
919
Location
AK
I have Exo and Seek Outside, but have not used a Kuiu. Personally I like the tube frames and the ability to change frame size by adding extensions.

While not based on data or direct experience, I think aluminum is more likely to survive abuse, such as dropping a heavily loaded pack to extricate ones self from a precarious position. Or you could just avoid such situations, which is probably smarter, but not as fun.

Exo is an outstanding company to due business with. The two Kuiu items I own, while not bad, have not met my expectations. That is of very limited value for extrapolation, but as I don't have the time or money to test everything I use it anyway.
 

bojangles808

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Joined
Sep 10, 2014
Messages
867
Location
hawai'i
For those of you who have tried both, what makes the Exo so much more comfortable? I have the Kuiu pack and have been curious to try the Exo but haven't seen one in person yet.
I had both and neither was that great for my back profile but Exo (K2) was better of the two. the belt was better (though still not great with the single pressure point) and it held the load higher up(i think i had the load harness?). However both slipped down my lumbar with heavy loads and just didn;t work for me. After i sold both i said enough of this and ordered both a stone glacier and kifaru and said once and for all i'm going to find one that fits. Loaded both with 90 pounds and walked back and forth around the house and kept the one that felt hte best (SG) Both were a lot better than the exo and kuiu, if I could pair the SG x curve frame with the kifaru belt it'd be the best of both worlds. Moral of the story is find what fits you what works for one fanboy wont always work for you. order both if you can (or find a rokslider nearby with a back that will let you try) and load with weight and return the one you don;t like if you want to do it right.
 
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dreamingWest

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 28, 2017
Messages
290
I originally chose Exo because of availability on a last minute pack purchase. Stone Glacier and Kifaru had longer lead times (~2016?). I've been very happy with the Exo purchase. Customer service is top notch.

I think Kuiu has made improvements to their packs the past couple of years. I use an Exo k2 with a 5500 and a 2000. I've hunted with guys that use Kuiu, Stone Glacier, and Mystery Ranch and I've never had pack envy. I've crossed paths with a guy using a Kifaru and it looked very nice. But I've never been able to wrap my head around their bag choices.

If starting from scratch I'd talk to Exo and Kifaru.

Between Exo and Kuiu, I'd pick Exo.

($.02)
 

sneaky

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Joined
Feb 1, 2014
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I had both and neither was that great for my back profile but Exo (K2) was better of the two. the belt was better (though still not great with the single pressure point) and it held the load higher up(i think i had the load harness?). However both slipped down my lumbar with heavy loads and just didn;t work for me. After i sold both i said enough of this and ordered both a stone glacier and kifaru and said once and for all i'm going to find one that fits. Loaded both with 90 pounds and walked back and forth around the house and kept the one that felt hte best (SG) Both were a lot better than the exo and kuiu, if I could pair the SG x curve frame with the kifaru belt it'd be the best of both worlds. Moral of the story is find what fits you what works for one fanboy wont always work for you. order both if you can (or find a rokslider nearby with a back that will let you try) and load with weight and return the one you don;t like if you want to do it right.
Did you try the Kifaru with the flat or curved stays?

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roosiebull

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2014
Messages
1,224
Location
oregon coast
So if you already had a new Kuiu bag, big enough to fit your needs, would you sell just to change to an Exo?
in a second..... personally. totally different caliber of packs. there was a pretty long list of things i didn't like about the kuiu pack i had.
 

roosiebull

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Aug 23, 2014
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1,224
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oregon coast
seems like that is what i need to do get the packs try them out with some weight.(y)
that would be ideal, only thing that won't tell you is longevity, but handling them all and seeing the difference in build quality will give you a good idea of that.
 

Cody_W

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2017
Messages
540
Location
Central Texas
I run a Kuiu ultra 4000 and beat the hell out of it with zero issues. It has withstand a ton of abuse and looks brand new. Packs are so personal, it would really be worth trying out the few packs you like the slot and return the least favorites if you can swing it. Kurt builds a great pack, which is what I went with first m, but it just didn’t work as well for me as the Kuiu pack.
 

roosiebull

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Aug 23, 2014
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oregon coast
Just make sure when reading reviews that the people bashing kuiu have actually used the new 2019+ models. I have had the older and the new and the new ones are much better. Not saying SG doesn't make great packs because they do. But I personally think kuiu packs have better features. But I would say buy both and try them out. Only YOUR back, hips and shoulders can tell you what is best for you.
my kuiu was pre 2019, before i sold it (for 200$ after sitting on it for awhile) i put the new style belt/suspension on it, and i do agree, it was a lot better feeling than the older ones.... they have improved. i wore it a couple days planning on keeping it before deciding it still wasn't for me, and still not as comfortable on my back as my other packs. you are right though, they did make some notable improvements.

i don't think anyone is "bashing" any packs, just sharing personal experience. that pack just didn't work for me at all, even if it had fit well and did ok with a heavy load, there were several things i didn't like about it aside from fit.

i do think their bags are pretty sweet, well thought out and proportioned, and of course they are a very light pack system. enough people seem to like them, and i won't argue that.... if people have tried other top tier packs and actually prefer kuiu, they must be good packs for some people. if they work good for you and hold up well, it's hard to go wrong, because the bags are nice, and they are light, and less money than most high end packs.
 

LongWayAround

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 10, 2015
Messages
1,063
I used a kuiu for several years but switched to an exo this year. For me, it's much better. The bag attachment to the frame is what really sold me. It's stupid easy and every little detail on the pack seems more substantial than the older kuiu. If I only had the kuiu, I wouldn't have known what I was missing.
 

slick

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2014
Messages
1,433
Location
Siskiyou Siskime
I used the brand new Kuiu this fall for a stint.

It was excellent (I’ve used SG since 12)

Took them 1/2+ decade but they finally caught up to everyone else


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ThunderCalves

Newbie
Joined
Mar 6, 2021
Messages
3
Exo. I took the plunge and got an Exo last year and can not believe the quality and comfort. I have been a Wildland firefighter fo over 25 years and have spent many miles with a heavy pack humping up and down mountains all over the country, a lot of time in the Salmon River Breaks of Idaho. Central Idaho will test any gear to the max. The packs we use for work have come a long way as far as comfort and durability, especially Mystery Ranch, but this Exo is the best thing I’ve put on my back. I love the attention to detail in the design and construction.

Exo customer service is amazing. The company is small but passionate about their product and the people that use it. Definitely a quality over quantity company. And like others have said, built in Idaho by people that use the gear, can’t beat that.

I wish they made a Wildland pack, I probably wouldn’t be nursing a sore back all the time if they did.


Edit: Probably should have been more specific about what I like about the Exo.

Ability to easily and quickly fine tune the fit to the load or if I’m going up or down hill.

Versatility to easily transition into a meat packing pack. Packing meat isn’t an after thought with Exo and the pack is designed to make it as easy as possible.

One frame and multiple packs. Awesome ingenuity to provide one awesome frame and swap bags. I have the K3 1800 and 4800. Used the 1800 for elk hunting and plan on using the 4800 to hike the Sawtooths this July with my son.

Accessories are smart without being gaudy.

Simplistically complicated design. Really smart design without being overly complicated.

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