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X-Pac Questions....
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Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
X-Pac Questions.... on 02/06/2013 19:46:16 MST Print View


I'm considering replacing my soon to be worn out beloved GoLite Jam2 with my own MYOG version of it. A few questions:

*Considering just doing the entire pack out of VX21 from Rockywoods. Is this overkill? I want it to be tough and hold up to scrambling abrasion.
Or is VX07 all I need for the entire pack?
I could also do a VX21 bottom panel and back, with VX07 for the rest. I don't care too much about weight and can't believe it'll make that much of a difference either way...Thoughts?

*I saw R. Caffin mention in a thread that he used X-Pac and with internally taped seams is pretty waterproof. What would I used for taping the seams? Never taped before.

*Does the seam finish (felled, etc.) matter if they're being taped? I was hoping to keep construction as simple as possible and leave the internal seams raw (though double stitched) and then taped. What seams do you all recommend?

I'm no sewing expert, but I've sewn pretty decent packs for my children. This will be my first time working with xpac and a slightly more featured pack design. Tips appreciated. Thanks.

Konrad .
(Konrad1013) - MLife
seam sealing on 02/06/2013 20:18:30 MST Print View

Can't help you on the other q's but here is some seam sealing tape:

I've also heard good stuff regarding Beamis Seam Tape, but I couldn't find any online right now.

A typical iron will get the job done, but for precision application, consider picking up one of these mini irons used on RC airplanes:

This is only 1 of many irons on the website, so you might want to research to make sure the there is a good range of temp control


Locale: Northwest Mass
xpac on 02/06/2013 20:24:44 MST Print View

I would just go all vx 21. I have worked with both, and the extra couple of ounces of fabric weight is probably worth it if you want durability. it is a great material. I have never seam taped anything, so can't help you there.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: seam sealing on 02/06/2013 20:25:50 MST Print View

Thanks Konrad.
I was just looking at that tape on Rockywoods. I think I get the sealing process.

Thanks Adie.
I pretty much decided to go all VX21 as it'll likely only add a couple ounces, tops.

Edited by xnomanx on 02/06/2013 20:27:04 MST.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: X-Pac Questions.... on 02/07/2013 01:52:35 MST Print View

VX21 vs VX07?
It all depends on what you put in the pack, and what scrub you drag the pack through.

Internal taping:
First of all, you can't get a decent adhesion to the outside of X-Pac fabrics, The DWR does not accept much of a bond. Yeah, been there!

AfaiK, the white inside knit fabric on X-Pac does not have any DWR treatment. I tape my seams with 3M9485 transfer tape on 70 denier PU-coated nylon: a strip about 25 mm wide. It will rub off inside your pack **eventually**, but that could be many years in the future.

Seams: I sew the seam over once after the initial join. That has always seemed to be enough for me. The tape covers the full seam.


Brendan S
(brendans) - MLife

Locale: Fruita CO
Re: Re: X-Pac Questions.... on 02/07/2013 07:34:15 MST Print View

What they said. I'd go all VX21 and that Melco tape is good stuff. I had fine luck with a household iron but make sure you get enough of extra tape for testing.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: X-Pac Questions.... on 02/07/2013 08:28:33 MST Print View

Thanks all...

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
xpac questions on 02/07/2013 08:39:59 MST Print View

21 does fine in brush, but sharp stuff (rocks, skis, axes) can wear at it fairly fast if abused. A double bottom or burlier bottom fabric could be a wise investment.

DIY gear supply has VX-21 and VX-42 seconds in stock right now. I've found their CS and shipping times to be better than Rockywoods.

Tyler Johnson
(riemannia) - F

Locale: Northeast Georgia
seam grip on 02/07/2013 09:39:19 MST Print View

Seam grip (as opposed to taping) on the inside seams waterproofs an xpac pack pretty well.

My test for waterproofness: turn the pack inside out, fill it with water, and see if it leaks. (Mine didn't.)

Mike D.
(mpd1690) - F
Re: xpac questions on 02/07/2013 09:51:31 MST Print View

I have used WX40 as well. It is a little lighter than VX42, as it doesn't have the inner taffeta. I always have my clothes at the bottom, so I don't have to worry about abrasion on the inside.

I've had good success with lighter DP materials, but, as mentioned early, it depends on your use.

Edited by mpd1690 on 02/07/2013 09:52:21 MST.

Michael Pappas
(Mpap89) - F

Locale: bay area
DIY gear supply over rocky woods on 02/07/2013 09:55:08 MST Print View

Ditto on ordering from DIY over rockywoods. Rockywoods shipping is ridiculous and usually slow. I'm thinking about using ballistic cordura in high abrasion areas for a new pack, mainly just the bottom.

michael levi
(M.L) - F

Locale: W-Never Eat Soggy (W)affles
vx on 02/07/2013 13:22:32 MST Print View

I would go VX01 for the rolltop and VX21 for the other areas.

Tyler Johnson
(riemannia) - F

Locale: Northeast Georgia
diy gear supply > rocky woods on 02/07/2013 14:37:43 MST Print View

Another vote for DIY Gear Supply here. Must've made 5 or 6 relatively large orders there over the past year and a half and I've had nothing but suberb service

Madeline T
(madscot13) - F
thank you on 02/08/2013 20:32:38 MST Print View

I might be classified as a forum lurker but I usually do not have much to add so I don't say much. regardless thank you for the thoughts on VX. I am thinking of making a bag body out of DX 40 and I will pick up some of the lighter stuff from DIY, thanks for the heads up on them. I needed some material for a roll top and inside of a front compartment. I hope to someday have pics to share.

Luke Schmidt
(Cameron) - MLife

Locale: The WOODS
More Ideas on 02/08/2013 23:00:30 MST Print View

Craig I might use VX07 for the upper part of the pack. Not so much to save wieght but because its softer and easier to work with. Chris Zimmer told me he uses Dyneema X for pack straps because the X-Pac is too much trouble (stiff). Speaking of that see if Chris Zimmer can make yous a couple sets of straps. That will save you a lot of time and frustration.

Don't sew the hipbelt onto the sides (like the old Jam2). Attach it near the center like the new Golite packs. This should improve the carry.

Decide if you want the hipbelt to ride higher above your hips or lower and around them. The triangle shaped hipbelts work better if the hipbelt is riding higher on top of the hips. The contoured hipbelts seen on heavier packs and the newer Jams are better if you want it to fit a bit lower.

I've tried side pockets with non stretchy material several times and just never liked the way they turned out. Either too tight or too lose and tricky to make neatly. I finally tried some stretchy mesh and liked that a lot better. Often I just make one big front pocket that can hold a Platy and my odds and ends.

Realistically you'll probably make at least two packs before you stop. It can be fun but if you experiment too much you end up spending about as much as you would if you just bought a ready made pack.

Edited by Cameron on 02/08/2013 23:01:29 MST.

Harald Hope

Locale: East Bay
mixed on 02/09/2013 13:07:01 MST Print View

I made my vx pack out of vx21 bottom/back (back as in strap points), vx07 sides/front, but because as noted, vx07 is pretty thin, it's really just 1.9 oz nylon with extra backing and an x grid, I used 200d for pockets, so the actual contact area of the pack bottom is vx21 and the lower sides is 200d over vx07, and since I don't really care if the pockets get small holes, that's fine I think. I wouldn't use vx07 if there were no pockets covering it on the lower sides, I don't think it would last long unless you only walk on broad 'wilderness highway' type trails.

If you're bushwhacking a lot particularly through chaparral type pointy sharp stuff, use the heaviest you can manage.

Since my top doesn't really touch anything I used regular but heavy coated 1.9oz nylon ripstop.

Side pockets are hard if you make them actually shaped, I did a lot of model prototypes using socket wrench long sockets to model the water bottle weight, took a lot of revisions, but once you get the pattern they are not that hard to make. I rejected any type of mesh for side pockets due to stretch and holes grabbing branch issue, so that turned out nicely.

Working with vx material is extremely pleasant by the way.

I used 200d / 3d mesh for straps.

+1 on diygearsupply, that guy works hard at getting deals and offering a wide range of useful fabrics, particularly worth noting is his excellent selection of good quality gutermann threads, I suggest buying one of each he sells because they are very cheap and worth stocking up on and since you are already paying shipping, just toss them onto the order.

Edited by hhope on 02/09/2013 13:11:10 MST.