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Help with trimming/cutting down a new Jam
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Cesar Valdez
(PrimeZombie) - F

Locale: Scandinavia
Help with trimming/cutting down a new Jam on 07/10/2011 16:23:46 MDT Print View

I have to admit I am bit afraid to go too nuts, as I am broke and can't just buy another pack (this pack itself was a birthday gift). But I have noticed some pretty significant savings of weight from trimming, so I am interested in learning more. Never (seriously) trimmed a backpack before to save on weight, but I will be doing at least some modifications. For one, I prefer water bottles to hydration bladders, so the sleeve will go, as will the ice axe loops (unless someone can tell me another good use for them).

Anyone have a Jam and trimmed it down? If so, how much weight were you able to cut off, and what exactly did you nix? Take anything off that you wish you had not trimmed, general tips, etc? Maybe you have a similar pack that you had good experiences with chopping up? Am I missing a great video on the subject?


Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

Jam on 07/10/2011 19:50:34 MDT Print View

I trimmed up a 2010 Jam. A search might find that thread. The mods I did were:

- snip hydration sleeve
- shorten straps
- replace main drawstring

The hydration sleeve saves quite a bit...close to an ounce. As I recall, you can rip out the side seams but you need to cut the hydration bladder along the bottom because it's sewn into a critical seam that would require re-sewing if you undo this seam. Once you get a stitch or two snipped, it starts to unravel pretty nicely so un-sewing the sides of the hydration bladder is pretty easy. This mod saves close to an ounce.

For strap trimming, shortening the main hipbelt strap is the only strap trimming that saves a nice amount of weight. You might save up to 1/2oz with just the hipbelt and then all the other straps combined saves maybe 1/4oz.

I replaced the main bag drawstring and cordlock with lighter stuff and saved maybe 0.2oz or so.

Robert Cowman
(rcowman) - F

Locale: Canadian Rockies
Re: Jam on 07/10/2011 20:00:24 MDT Print View

there are those tiny useless pockets inside the hipbelt pockets. get rid of those. if you never put your trekking poles or ice axe on the outside, get rid of the ice axe loops and you can get rid of the shock cords. (I modified mine by hanging a loop of spectra from the compactor piece and a bit of shock cord from the top loops or compression strap)

Michael Ray
(topshot) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Re: Help with trimming/cutting down a new Jam on 07/10/2011 21:15:38 MDT Print View

If you carry a CCF pad, you can remove the one in the backpanel if you're not carrying a huge load. I saved 6 oz from my Pinnacle by nixing the pad, bladder sleeve and trimming straps.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - M

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Help with trimming/cutting down a new Jam on 07/11/2011 00:47:58 MDT Print View

If you ever plan on camping in a treeless landscape, (tundra, ect.) you would need a place keep whatever poles you were going to use for your tarp. That's one use I could see for the ice axe loops, but maybe you will never be in that situation.

Larry Dyer
(veriest1) - F

Locale: Texas
Re: Help with trimming/cutting down a new Jam on 07/11/2011 21:47:51 MDT Print View

Use trekking poles to pitch the tarp if you bring them. If not the poles can still go in the side pockets and under the compression straps. It'd be hard to get smooth poles to stay in the ice axe loops anyway.

If you don't want to permanently remove the ice axe loops you can take the bungees off by just undoing the knots that keep them from coming out and save some weight.

I can't remember how much I took off mine or what it weighed afterwards exactly. It was about 29 ounces before and it's in the 25 ounce range now. I removed the ice axe loops and bungees, trimmed the compression straps, trimmed the hip belt, trimmed the shoulder straps, removed the pockets inside the hip belt pockets, removed the hydration bladder, shortened the drawstring, and shortened the top strap by a hair. I haven't regretted any of it.

Edited by veriest1 on 07/11/2011 21:53:56 MDT.

Eric Thompson
(er0ck) - F

Locale: PNW
trimming a jam... on 07/12/2011 16:07:31 MDT Print View

only thing i did to mine in addition to the others is to remove most, but not all of the pad pocket. this allows me to more easily remove the pad when i put a sleeping pad inside the pack. it also saves a bit of weight. i just left about 3 inches of it across the bottom and the very top that is a separate piece anyway.

oh, i also removed the haul loop.

removing the extra pockets on the inside of the hipbelt pockets was a pain, but interesting and probably saved 0.1oz :-)

i've been toying with removing one of the hipbelt pockets.
i'm certainly going to remove the compression strap stuff on the bottom.

i may replace the zipper pulls with loops of spectra

this past week i removed the tags and hang loops from my sleeping bag. probably saved .1grams

Edited by er0ck on 07/12/2011 16:11:04 MDT.

Larry Dyer
(veriest1) - F

Locale: Texas
Re: trimming a jam... on 07/12/2011 22:19:52 MDT Print View

Now that's an interesting idea. Did you have issues with it fraying when you trimmed the pad pocket? Did you sorta hem it or sear the cut edge?

Edited by veriest1 on 07/12/2011 22:20:39 MDT.

James Stewart

Locale: New England
Re: trimming a jam... on 07/13/2011 08:54:34 MDT Print View

I did the same thing and I didn't have any issues with fraying or anything. If I recall I just flipped the whole thing inside-out and removed the upper portion of the pouch as close to the seams as possible and cut across the bottom with a few inches left over. I use a trimmed Z-lite pad and it fits in there perfectly when folded to be 2-panels wide.

Eric Thompson
(er0ck) - F

Locale: PNW
the fray on 07/13/2011 10:16:09 MDT Print View

same with James here. no fraying yet. i use the stock pad most of the time except in high summer when i put a CCF or ridgerest 3/4 in the jam as a burrito. jamrrito

Cesar Valdez
(PrimeZombie) - F

Locale: Scandinavia
thanks again on 07/14/2011 15:06:18 MDT Print View

Good feedback, thanks y'all. When I get around to it, I will do a before/after weight.

Justin, good to see you on here. As far as tundra goes, I live in SW Sweden, so no tundra near me, just lots of thick woods. So did you go UL yet? I saw you had a 14lb base weight posted on that other crappy site. In a few weeks I am going to do my first SUL trip (below 5lbs), we'll see how that goes. I will still take my ax and/or saw out if it is a group of friends and we want a big campfire, but as of late I mostly leave them at home now. I doubt I will ever own an ice ax.

J. Lopes
(Jay_NJ) - F
trimmed and reinforced on 07/19/2011 13:47:22 MDT Print View

Just got the pack last week so I figured I would chime in:

Trimmed all the straps. took off the ice loops. took out the inner pockets on the hipbelt pockets. replaced all cordage with 1.25 mm Z-Line (including the zipper cords). Took out the hydration pocket, mini cord lock, etc. -- pretty much what everyone else did.

Things I added (blasphemy!): ZPacks Cuben Fiber Shoulder Pouch, small s biner (these are more or less permanent so i count them in the pack weight)

I also removed the ccf foam backpad and I took a mini pipe bender and fairly soft and amazingly light aluminum tubing and copied the ula ohm frame and sewed/rigged it onto the ccf foam pad following its exact curves. Easy to make for the most part, a PITA to get back in the sleeve. After getting the frame back in, this made extremely rigid on the y-axis. The final weight was 28 ounces. The reinforcement is not a game changer, but it seems to transfer weight a bit better to the hipbelt and the odds of the frame buckling at any point are slim to none unless I possibly fall down a mountain into a few boulders.