November 20, 2015 8:16 PM MST - Subscription purchasing, account maintenance, forum profile maintenance, new account registration, and forum posting have been disabled
as we prepare our databases for the final migration to our new server next week. Stay tuned here for more details.
Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
Jam 2 Durability
Display Avatars Sort By:
Nobody You Know
(DirtbagLiving) - F

Locale: Colorado
Jam 2 Durability on 05/26/2010 17:03:25 MDT Print View

Ok, so I've had one for about a year now yet I've never used it. Reason why? To me, it seems like if you put more than 20lbs in the thing, the shoulder straps are going to rip off. I've been using Black Diamond packs for years now and they are bomber yet heavy.

So for all of you who have used a Jam 2 in your days, what's the deal? Is this thing going to hold up if I put 30lbs in it and decide to walk a few miles?

Edited by DirtbagLiving on 05/26/2010 17:04:28 MDT.

Ryan Hutchins
(ryan_hutchins) - F

Locale: Somewhere out there
jam 2 on 05/26/2010 17:10:34 MDT Print View

the jam 2 will do fine with 30 pounds, though you will be about at its carrying capacity. I have regularly carried 25-35 pounds and have never had a blow out of any kind. 25-30 is a comfortable carry for this pack, anything above 30 you will feel on your shoulders at the end of the day, though you can do it if needed, I sure have. HTH

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Jam 2 Durability on 05/26/2010 17:26:48 MDT Print View

If you do a search you will see that there have been some durability issues with the Jam, esp. around the shoulder strap attachment to the main body.

I am a strong guy and well muscled. I find any frameless pack, the Jam included, uncomfortable over about 20lbs (probably less) because of the load on the traps / shoulders. The carry of the Jam will not compare well to your BD packs at weights over about 20lbs.

You will have people say, "Ah yes, it was fine to 30 lbs." But comfortable? Nah. Especially over a long 12 hour hiking day.

Steven McAllister
(brooklynkayak) - MLife

Locale: Atlantic North East
Durability on 05/26/2010 17:38:38 MDT Print View

The Jam is made with some pretty tough materials. It's not like the old heavy and less durable stuff that you used to see in packs.

I don't own a Jam, but it is designed for the ultralight hiker. If you pack more than 20 lbs on a regular basis, you probably want a heavier, framed pack.

The jam can be packed with a closed cell foam sleeping pad acting as the frame to extend the weight range.

Nobody You Know
(DirtbagLiving) - F

Locale: Colorado
Re: Durability on 05/26/2010 17:53:45 MDT Print View

In that case...anyone have a 50L pack they want to trade?

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

Jam 2 on 05/26/2010 19:05:10 MDT Print View

I find the Jam 2 to be comfortable to 20 lbs and tolerable to 30 lbs. Durability wise, I think it'll hold up fine to loads up to ~40 lbs with reasonable care. So essentially the Jam 2 is strong enough to handle the loads that it's designed to carry, but not strong enough to handle grossly overweight loads. A few weeks ago I spent 2 days ski touring with 33 lbs in a Jam 2 (well technically about 10 lbs was strapped to the outside including a 7 lbs tent). It wasn't comfortable, but there were no durability issues with the pack. Unfortunately I don't have a better picture that this:

Jam 33 lbs

Edited by dandydan on 05/26/2010 19:08:08 MDT.

Robert Cowman
(rcowman) - F

Locale: Canadian Rockies
Skurka on 05/26/2010 23:57:25 MDT Print View

Mine has held up fine, Andrew Skurka seems to have no problem getting thousands of miles out of his golite bags.

my $0.02

Ben P
(benp1) - F

Locale: London
Jam on 05/27/2010 03:07:12 MDT Print View

I've used my original Jam quite a bit and its been bullet proof. I recently acquired a Jam2 as I wanted the hip belt pockets and mesh back panel.

I'm a lightweighter, no UL, the base weight on my last walking trip as just under 9kg (20lb) including binoculars, gorillapod and SLR, though to be fair the group tarp was being carried by someone else. Total weight was probably around 12kg (26lb) and it was grand. This was all using my original Jam

James Patsalides
( - MLife

Locale: New England
re: Jam 2 Durability on 05/27/2010 07:03:13 MDT Print View

No issues here with durability... pretty much bulletproof if you take a little bit of care... although my regular base weight is ~8lbs, so I'm probably not much of a test in terms of hauling heavy loads... the major durability issue for me has been my UL scissors (!).

Anyway, IMHO, the Jam 2 is an almost perfect pack in the 14-20lb range. I tend to use my Golite Ion below 14lbs.
If I ever needed more than 20lbs I would focus on reducing weight rather than increasing pack size/capability... after all, this is a lightweight backpacking forum, remember!?


Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: re: Jam 2 Durability on 05/27/2010 07:55:28 MDT Print View

I've carried my Jam2 for 3 years with up to 35 pounds just fine. I also use it cycling, commuting, on grocery runs, rock climbing, hiking and camping. When I travel, it's my clothes bag. It's plenty tough; I don't believe I have a single hole in it yet, with the exception of the mesh pockets, which still work fine.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Pack durability on 05/27/2010 09:34:12 MDT Print View

I remember the first time I looked at a GoLite pack --- it seemed so thin. They look really stout next to some of the uber-light packs out there. I've used several GoLite models and you won't tear the straps off them. Learning to pack frameless packs well is the trick I think.

Nobody You Know
(DirtbagLiving) - F

Locale: Colorado
Re: Pack durability on 05/27/2010 09:39:29 MDT Print View

My base weight is roughly around 20lbs. Yeah I know, I have a lot of work to do. I like my tent and I'm a climber so my climbing shoes and chalk bag are always in my pack. I'm just worried about the pack after adding food, water, stuff like that.

Oh and do I have a Jam 1 1/2 or something? My pack has the mesh back panel but no hip belt pockets.....

Christopher Plesko
(Pivvay) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Re: Re: Pack durability on 05/27/2010 18:56:53 MDT Print View

I beat the hell out of mine and it only has a few holes in the front pocket. It's my regular ice climbing back meaning it's got 2 tools strapped to the back, rope, screws, etc.

Plus I tie it to the rope when I top rope solo stuff and drag it against the rock while filled with rocks. It's doing well all things considered with only a few small holes.

All that being said, I usually don't carry crazy heavy loads with it. It is a frameless pack? I've used it to carry 45lbs of water up a hill and that is torture.

Ben P
(benp1) - F

Locale: London
Jam 1 1/2 on 05/28/2010 04:23:52 MDT Print View

Rich S - I think you have a 2008 Jam, not sure whether its called a Jam or Jam 2, its the one that came straight after the original Jam I think