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New Zimmerbuilt cuben pack
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Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - F

Locale: Southeast
New Zimmerbuilt cuben pack on 12/12/2011 17:42:42 MST Print View

I wanted a pack that had some versatility. Which for me means capable enough to accommodate long winter trips with lots of gear/clothes, yet light enough to do 3-4 day summer trips without feeling like I'm carrying a tank. So, Chris Zimmer built me the pack below.
I think it's pretty awesome.

Size: 2,500 cu in cuben body
Weight: After trimming, 19 oz w/ alum stay for long trips. Stripped down for summer - 14oz
Stretch mesh front pocket
Cuben hip pockets
Side compression

Love the black cuben. Thanks for looking!

try 2

try 3


Couple of at home pics:
Cuben 1

Cuben 2


Edited by ViolentGreen on 12/12/2011 17:49:12 MST.

Justin C
(paintballr4life) - MLife

Locale: East Coast
Beautiful Pack on 12/12/2011 19:03:18 MST Print View

Chris does great work. He is currently making a second pack for me right now. I like the simplistic design you have there.

Dan Durston
(dandydan) - F

Pack on 12/12/2011 19:23:00 MST Print View

Sweet. It looks a lot like a cuben Ohm to me. I really like this compression system.

Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Pack on 12/12/2011 19:29:49 MST Print View

"It looks a lot like a cuben Ohm to me"

That's pretty much what I was going for with this one. The Ohm has all the features I like so I figured throw a couple yards of cuben at it and see how it turns out.


Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
"New Zimmerbuilt cuben pack" on 12/12/2011 19:41:13 MST Print View

Looks good.

I added Linelocs to the top of my ULA Ohm compression, no slipping issues with the cord anymore, the older stock cord lock would always slip throughout the day.

Great job on another build Chris.

Robert Perkins

Locale: The Sierras
New Zimmerbuilt cuben pack on 12/12/2011 20:23:31 MST Print View

Sweet pack! I am waiting for a Zimmerbuilt pack of my own. Chris has been great to work with on figuring out the features available, and what I needed in a pack. I don't know if he does it part-time or full-time, but I suspect he is going to get busier as word gets out! I like that a person can pick options that they like from other packs and he will incorporate them in the Zimmerbuilt pack.

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Very nice on 12/12/2011 20:26:30 MST Print View

Chris builds some great packs. I'm still mulling over the day pack thing and from all I've seen on the web (others designs), Chris is the man to build just what you want and need.

I went over to Chris' site to see if the photo's would have a shot of the al. stay but didn't find anything. It'd be nice to see that, if you or Chris can share. Thanks.

Edited by WarrenGreer on 12/12/2011 20:51:58 MST.

James Winstead

Locale: CA
Re: New Zimmerbuilt cuben pack on 12/12/2011 21:13:10 MST Print View

This is super cool and I want one.

However, to stir the pot for a second... How is this different/better than one of the handful of other options in a similar size range such as the MLD Prophet, ULA CDT, or SMD Swift to name a few of the popular ones around here? For example the Prophet is more or less the same weight at 2900ci, and depending on what was measured as your 2500ci(main compartment vs, sum of all pockets etc.) it might be slightly bigger too. I'm only comparing it to this cuben pack without it's optional frame here.

I guess I'm wondering how much weight is actually saved here by using cuben. It seems to me that cuben allows crazy stuff like 3-4oz sul/xul packs. It is also a great material for tarps and shelters where there is really very little actual structure, seams, etc to add weight. A material that is whatever percent lighter than another actually correlates pretty well to a lighter shelter. However, for packs, once you add a hipbelt, beefier shoulder strap padding, compression straps, additional pockets etc. the relationship between a given material's weight might be a little less relevant.

As far as the design features of this particular pack, I really appreciate the removable frame stays and the single do-it-all idea that this can be your frameless 3 season pack, as well as winter, or heavy water load desert pack. And there is nothing better than having something custom made to your specific taste/requirements. I'm not at all trying to knock that. Besides, everyone knows that cuben is sexy.

I'm done stirring...

edit...I meant smd swift, not starlight

Edited by James_W on 12/12/2011 21:21:27 MST.

Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Re: New Zimmerbuilt cuben pack on 12/13/2011 05:53:50 MST Print View

Hi James-

You've got it right, there isn't a ton of weight savings by using cuben in a pack. The weight difference between two yards of 1.4oz cuben and 4.0oz Dyneema X is probably only 3-4oz I guess. It's all the hardware, padding, mesh, etc that really make the weight of a pack. That's why a minimalist pack of cuben(take the Zero for example) is only ~4oz. It's only the cuben weight which isn't much. I got this pack because 1) I like cuben and 2) once you start adding options and comparing features, this pack is lighter than the others and about the same price.

P.S.- This pack is basically an Ohm clone so that is probably the best pack to compare it to. Size and features are the same except mine has a beefier hipbelt(speaking of 1st gen Ohm). There is ~6 oz difference in weight between the two packs if they both used the same stays.


Edited by ViolentGreen on 12/13/2011 06:04:58 MST.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
Frame? on 12/13/2011 09:08:21 MST Print View

Looks like an awesome pack. Thats more or less what I've been thinking about making except with dyneema X. Something small enough for summer trips but big enough for longer or colder trips, possibley with a few things strapped to the outside. Whats the frame like and how does it fit into the pack? Any idea on load bearing in this thing?

Ryan Smith
(ViolentGreen) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Frame? on 12/13/2011 19:31:10 MST Print View


It's an aluminum U shaped stay similar to the ones sold by SMD near as I can tell. Weighs just shy of 4 oz. It fits snugly into a sleeve on the inside of the pack. I can PM you some pics if you like.

Haven't really tried to find the weight limit yet, but I did stuff about 25lbs into it yesterday. It was still comfortable & handled the weight pretty well. I would imagine the max load to realistically be around 30-35lbs.


Clint Hewitt
(WalkSoftly33) - F

Locale: New England
Awesome on 12/13/2011 20:07:02 MST Print View

Thats is an awesome looking pack! I have seen other cuben packs out there and the color of this one gives it a cool silver complexion that really goes well with the DyneemaX trim. Also Im am really impressed with the compression system utilizing line-locs, looks like it will give a nice even compression over the whole bag. That is a tight looking pack.

How much did the pack cost?

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - M

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: New Zimmerbuilt cuben pack on 12/13/2011 20:44:18 MST Print View

Shiny! This is the kind of pack I have been thinking about lately, but I would personally prefer a very bombproof fabric. How much weight do you think it could carry?

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Yes! on 12/15/2011 21:06:51 MST Print View

Yes Ryan, I'd like photo's of the U-shaped stay in the pack. Very interested how that looks/works.

Justin, Ryan said that he "would imagine the max load to realistically be around 30-35lbs."

Christopher Zimmer
(czimmer) - F

Locale: Ohio
Aluminum Stay on 12/15/2011 21:50:26 MST Print View

Hey Warren,

I didn't grab a photo of the inside of Ryan's pack, but here is a photo from another pack I did.
Frame 2
The frame set up of Ryan's pack is similar to this. I use 1" webbing to create channels for the stay to slide into. The top of the frame is attached to the top of the pack on the same seam as the load lifters.

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Thank you on 12/15/2011 23:23:09 MST Print View


Thanks. I appreciate that. I'm not good at guessing, but a photo is worth a thousand words. -Is the light crossed or zig-zagged line in the photo to hold a bladder in place? Not sure what I'm looking at but seems it could do that.

Frank H.
(porker110) - M

Locale: California
Zimmer on 12/15/2011 23:49:52 MST Print View

I'm wanting a Zimmer pack more and more.

Christopher Zimmer
(czimmer) - F

Locale: Ohio
Bungee on 12/16/2011 07:20:17 MST Print View

That cord could be used to hold a bladder or pad, but was meant more for a way to hold down larger stuff sacks when you zip open the pack, so they don't roll out. That is the inside of the Eugenius pack by the way, Eugene wanted something that would help keep items in place when he opened the pack.

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Brilliant on 12/16/2011 20:40:35 MST Print View

Now I understand more Chris; I thought the Eugenuis pack was pretty cool. -Really feeling your designs. Great materials, l/w sensibility, and beautifully constructed. Zimmerbuilt is really setting itself apart.