Pack gripes thread

Pacific_Fork

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May 26, 2019
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662
If I was owner of stone glacier I would go back to the drawing board on their frames. I’ve had to send mine back for repairs 2 times due to weak webbing and stitching. One pack out the main shoulder strap to hip belt ripped off and I about tumbled down the hill. I feel like that’s not normal especially with only 10 or so heavy pack outs on one frame. Durability > weight IMO and maybe I should look into a different brand in the future.
 

Wrench

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Aug 23, 2018
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WA
I wish the made in Bozeman NICE frame was still in production with the lift kit as a standard option. Still my favorite frame.

I wish all of them would offer a quiet fleece type cover for archery hunting. If you hunt the dry brush of north Idaho in September, you can hear a cordura pack scrub on the brush from about 100 yards away.
 

Pacific_Fork

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May 26, 2019
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662
I wish all of them would offer a quiet fleece type cover for archery hunting. If you hunt the dry brush of north Idaho in September, you can hear a cordura pack scrub on the brush from about 100 yards away.

Good point, most packs are super load when traveling through brush and/or low hanging tree branches.
 

Jimss

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Mar 6, 2015
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1,841
Stone Glacier's biggest mistake is not making their packs in camo. That was the deal breaker when I was picking between Kifaru and SG.

Now that I own Kifaru I hardly have any complaints. Obviously no pack is likely ever light enough but it's always great to shave off lbs! One thing I think Kifaru could change is to make their load lifters higher on the frames.
 

TheGDog

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Jun 12, 2020
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2,526
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OC, CA
Biggest thing it do your damn homework and make them make NO NOISE!!!

I'd test the snot out of it and tweak the engineering till I finally... FINALLY... have a pack that doesn't make any freaking noises (creaks, squeeks) when it's on you, loaded up well, and you're hiking.

Also maybe figure out a way to have a framing system that would allow the user to slide the packs vertical positioning up or down along some frame rails. So that way you could adjust how far up from your shoulders-line the top of the pack protrudes.

For two reasons... for example... I got tripped by uneven sidewalk while walking with the Outdoorsman's Atlas Trainer on w/ a 45Lbs plate on it. That damn frame with the notch for your rifle... jabbed me in the back of the head pretty harsh. Wasn't happy about that. Seems like a safety issue if it were to happen in the field.

Also... the ability to lower how much the pack protrudes above shoulder line would be helpful for hike-ins where ya gotta duck under buncha blown-down logs on the trail, ya don't have to duck down so agonizingly low.

Also... ability to adjust WHERE on your back the "lumbar pad" rests upon. I have longtime trauma injury there so I end up tightening up my shoulder straps more then needed in an attempt to have the shoulders helping to lift the bottom of the pack up as high as it can get in that area, because the trauma I had smacked lumbar+saccrum+sacro-illiac junction uber hard. So if something is pushing on saccrum all day... by the time I drive back home, when I go to get out of the car I'm hobbled badly in the hip on that one side. For me personally if they could engineer it so that the lumbar pad wasn't even on the lumbar.. and maybe the frame had two winglets that dropped down to provide the fastening point / starting point of the hipbelts... just a little inward toward centerline from where the illiac crests end. I hazard to guess lotta folks might find it more comfortable, if done right. The goal being not put any weight on lumbar or saccrum or sacro-illiac juncture... but all of it.. only on the illiac crests of the hip. ALSO this would prevent the bottom-most edge of the pack belt from constantly working at pushing your pants waistline down whilst walking.

And put zips so I can get at the main compartment from whatever angle the pack happens to be laying at at the moment. That feature was kinda neat in that first used Badlands pack I picked up.

And OMMFG make a damn waistbelt system that doesn't constantly work itself back to being looser again. I should NOT have to keep re-checking re-tightening that damn thing throughout the day. And it seems like it happens to any of them, and it gets worse when you've been sweating profusely.
 

fisherman983

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Sep 7, 2015
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282
After using my k3, I'd say with heavy loads if just doesn't compare to a kifaru, especially with a Nalgene on the waist belt.

With lighter loads it's seems to be very comfortable.

So I'd like them to make it better and make the waist belt a little bigger and more comfortable for a Nalgene.

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CoStick

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May 18, 2021
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1,137
I use one pack for all my hunting and backcountry needs and don’t have a complaint. It took few packs to find it, but my search is over.
 

TheTone

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Joined
Mar 4, 2012
Messages
961
I wish the made in Bozeman NICE frame was still in production with the lift kit as a standard option. Still my favorite frame.

I wish all of them would offer a quiet fleece type cover for archery hunting. If you hunt the dry brush of north Idaho in September, you can hear a cordura pack scrub on the brush from about 100 yards away.
I’m pretty sure you can still get a Bozeman made NICE in the military lineup but options for bags, etc are limited and the price stinks. I also thought I heard of someone recently getting a lift kit with a phone call.

My nice frame has so many miles on it! I think I bought it in 2008? Honestly it still looks really good and I doubt I’ll ever get rid of it
 

K1United

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May 26, 2016
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450
I’ve used an exo K2 for about 7 years and have easily replaced well over a dozen of the removable crib clips. The little plastic tabs can snap under even the lightest pressure and usually at the worst possible time during pack out. Their customer service and the guys at exo are awesome and have sent me several sets free of charge. But it is a total pain and without fail I brake at least one every pack out, so much so I just expect it and always pack extras. My preference would be to make them permanent and out of reinforced thicker plastic or even aluminum.
5CA54741-B60A-4558-8FBF-AB2F05499D73.jpeg
I have also told Steve a couple times that I was jealous of Kifaru’s straps and wished they would make their frame straps maybe just 6-12 inches longer. Packing out moose quarters and paired front/back elk quarters, you end up running out of strap very quickly and I’ve had to MacGyver it to make it work. But don’t get me wrong, I love my exo and as mentioned their commitment to their customers is unparalleled and their quality is exceptional.
 

ddd-shooter

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Apr 9, 2021
Messages
165
I’ve used an exo K2 for about 7 years and have easily replaced well over a dozen of the removable crib clips. The little plastic tabs can snap under even the lightest pressure and usually at the worst possible time during pack out. Their customer service and the guys at exo are awesome and have sent me several sets free of charge. But it is a total pain and without fail I brake at least one every pack out, so much so I just expect it and always pack extras. My preference would be to make them permanent and out of reinforced thicker plastic or even aluminum.
View attachment 413010
I have also told Steve a couple times that I was jealous of Kifaru’s straps and wished they would make their frame straps maybe just 6-12 inches longer. Packing out moose quarters and paired front/back elk quarters, you end up running out of strap very quickly and I’ve had to MacGyver it to make it work. But don’t get me wrong, I love my exo and as mentioned their commitment to their customers is unparalleled and their quality is exceptional.
Why not just buy kifaru compression straps and clips?
 

Marble

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May 29, 2019
Messages
2,209
I’ve used an exo K2 for about 7 years and have easily replaced well over a dozen of the removable crib clips. The little plastic tabs can snap under even the lightest pressure and usually at the worst possible time during pack out. Their customer service and the guys at exo are awesome and have sent me several sets free of charge. But it is a total pain and without fail I brake at least one every pack out, so much so I just expect it and always pack extras. My preference would be to make them permanent and out of reinforced thicker plastic or even aluminum.
View attachment 413010
I have also told Steve a couple times that I was jealous of Kifaru’s straps and wished they would make their frame straps maybe just 6-12 inches longer. Packing out moose quarters and paired front/back elk quarters, you end up running out of strap very quickly and I’ve had to MacGyver it to make it work. But don’t get me wrong, I love my exo and as mentioned their commitment to their customers is unparalleled and their quality is exceptional.
Snider talked about the buckles Kifaru uses awhile back. He talked about some of the testing they have done to compare whatever they use, to the imported (assuming) buckles. Super cold temps, drop tests and variety of stress tests. They have withstood multiple pack outs, horse rides, travel and been in and out of the vehicle dozens of times.

It's funny you mentioned this because I was just talking to a buddy of mine about it. I have never broken a kifaru buckle, but I've broken them on every other pack I own. Mostly badlands...

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Marbles

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May 16, 2020
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AK
The interesting thing about these threads is how some people hate what others love. For me, I would change the Exo hip belt to a one piece design and get rid of the velcro wings.

I would get rid of the velcro bag attachment to the top of the frame and use gatekeeper bucks to connect the load lifters instead.

I would make the straps for the lid detachable. I rarely use the lid and find having them on the frame mildly annoying.

I would also make the cargo straps on the frame longer.

The first is my only real complaint. The second is just preference as both designs do the job. For the last two, I could implement them myself, the fact that I have not show's how small of an issue they are.

Snider talked about the buckles Kifaru uses awhile back. He talked about some of the testing they have done to compare whatever they use, to the imported (assuming) buckles. Super cold temps, drop tests and variety of stress tests. They have withstood multiple pack outs, horse rides, travel and been in and out of the vehicle dozens of times.

It's funny you mentioned this because I was just talking to a buddy of mine about it. I have never broken a kifaru buckle, but I've broken them on every other pack I own. Mostly badlands...

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The issue is the open cross bar design to allow relocation of the buckle (an instance where gatekeepers would be ideal). Exo uses top quality, US manufactured hardware (Duraflex). Other than switching to metal Cobra buckles (overkill and heavy) one could not get better quality. They are probably the same manufacturer as Kifaru uses (and the same company that makes gatekeepers and SG also uses Duraflex buckles).

Kifaru would need testing from an independent lab to convince me they had found something better than Duraflex products.
 

TheViking

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Mar 2, 2019
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875
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Colorado
If i owned Kifaru, i'd get our azzes moved in and concentrate on R&D rather than podcasts that have gone stale, and going all Hollywood and shit. I haven't seen anything earth shattering or improved upon since The Hoodlum. Although i am happy to say it will probably be the last pack i buy unless something tragic happens to it. That is 1 pack that will be hard to do better than fo sho.......

Kifaru has been irritating me lately too. This 35% off sale pissed me off. “Rush and get your orders in before we move!” So what did most people do…

Then you throw down your biggest sale two weeks later?? I can gladly wait the 12 weeks for the new pack if I’m saving $200+. And now they’re discontinuing CB and MC packs…wtf?! I don’t want to look like everyone else in CO.

I’ve been thinking hard about going to to EXO now. One that I didn’t like about Kifaru is all the mixing and matching with pockets and bags, etc. It grew on me, but swapping stuff around gets old sometimes. I do miss having one do all pack and just making it work because the bag has a good layout. Also, between frame, bag, pockets, accessories, etc I’m probably $1200-$1500 deep?? What does that really gain me over have an EXO system? Maybe a slight better frame? Maybe. I can get a frame, 4800 system, pockets and a 1800 bag for day hunts and for under $900.

Is Kifaru really worth the extra cost? I’m having my doubts.
 
Last edited:

HaydenLane

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Dec 31, 2020
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433
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Nodak
Kifaru has been irritating me lately too. This 35% off sale pissed me off. “Rush and get your orders in before we move!” So what did most people do…

My complaint is more minor but related. I was going to buy a new CB shape charge a couple weeks ago, but when I try on their site it says the product is unavailable. I ended up picking up a used one in RG instead.

Then this sale comes along, and the ad (instagram) is a picture of a CB shape charge. Go back on and try to buy one again, product unavailable. Don’t tease me like that, kifaru.
 

Marble

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Joined
May 29, 2019
Messages
2,209
The interesting thing about these threads is how some people hate what others love. For me, I would change the Exo hip belt to a one piece design and get rid of the velcro wings.

I would get rid of the velcro bag attachment to the top of the frame and use gatekeeper bucks to connect the load lifters instead.

I would make the straps for the lid detachable. I rarely use the lid and find having them on the frame mildly annoying.

I would also make the cargo straps on the frame longer.

The first is my only real complaint. The second is just preference as both designs do the job. For the last two, I could implement them myself, the fact that I have not show's how small of an issue they are.


The issue is the open cross bar design to allow relocation of the buckle (an instance where gatekeepers would be ideal). Exo uses top quality, US manufactured hardware (Duraflex). Other than switching to metal Cobra buckles (overkill and heavy) one could not get better quality. They are probably the same manufacturer as Kifaru uses (and the same company that makes gatekeepers and SG also uses Duraflex buckles).

Kifaru would need testing from an independent lab to convince me they had found something better than Duraflex products.
I agree. I bet they use the same thing but I have no experience with EXO. Snyder will say what brand the buckles are, or kifaru will tell you if someone asks. Be interesting to see if they use the same brand or not.

What I can say is they are tough as hell.

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