Forum Index » Make Your Own Gear » Anybody or anyplace in Connecticut/New England that can modify backpacks (Osprey Hornet 46)?


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Jennifer Tran
(jentran) - M

Locale: South Florida
Anybody or anyplace in Connecticut/New England that can modify backpacks (Osprey Hornet 46)? on 04/30/2013 09:32:16 MDT Print View

Hi all,

I've been around the site for while (first time posting though!). I'd really love to use the Osprey Hornet 46 as my backpacking backpack, however as many have mentioned the back length is too short. The large fits my back, but then the shoulder/hip straps are then too big. (I'm 5'5'' and 130lbs!) The small size hip strap (or maybe medium) and medium shoulder straps would be ideal for me. Either switch out a part (and see if anybody is interested in a medium with large hip/shoulder straps) or shorten the existing large shoulder/hip straps.

I want to get it modified, and asked Dan McHale about modifications. They're pretty busy though, so he referred me to Rainy Pass in Washington. I'm located in Connecticut though. Does any body know a place or someone around here that would be able to do it well? If so, any idea how much it would cost? Rainy Pass was quoting me ~$40-60.

I could go to a clothes tailor, but not sure if they would be able to do a good job since it would be unusual for them.


Any guidance much appreciated!



Cheers,
Jen

Seth Brewer
(Whistler) - MLife

Locale: www.peaksandvalleys.weebly.com
Welcome to BPL Jen on 04/30/2013 10:04:47 MDT Print View

As a former West Hartfordite myself (good to see more CT locals on BPL.) welcome to BPL! I don't know anyone local, but have heard that Rainy Pass doing good work. Should you choose to have them modify it - don't be afraid to call and fully explain what you want. More info is always better when having custom work done.

THOUGHT : Before I would even think of spending money on modifying a pack, I'd look at what I like about the pack - and then find a cottage company that already makes a pack with what I'm looking for (Likely Made In USA, probably lighter, probably plenty durable and more tuned in to what you want).

Possible recommendations: (FYI: these companies will let you purchase - try on - and return for a full refund)

ULA OHM 2.0 (has different hip-belts so you can get the torso size and hipbelt size right) (www.ula-equipment.com)

A custom Zimmerbuilt backpack (not as expensive as you'd think, and he'll work with you to get what you want: zimmerbuilt.com)

Mountain Laurel Designs - Women's Exodus or Prophet (ask Ron and he'd do a Prophet for you I'm pretty sure: mountainlaureldesigns.com) -- I've used MANY of his products for thousands of miles and have never been disappointed.

Zpacks - Arc Blast (what I currently use) depending on your max weight carried this is an awesome pack: www.zpacks.com


IF YOU WANT TO TRY ON: Try going to REI in Blue Back square and seeing what they have for DEUTER (very adjustable) or GRANITE GEAR (can change out hipbelts).

Edited by Whistler on 04/30/2013 10:08:28 MDT.

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Anybody or anyplace in Connecticut/New England that can modify backpacks (Osprey Hornet 46) on 04/30/2013 10:12:03 MDT Print View

I agree with Seth. I would put the pack up for sale on gear swap and use the money to get a pack that works better for you. I would agree with Seth's other options too.

Sorry I didn't have the name of a pack modification expert. I just think you're more likely to have a good ending with a different pack.

Jordan P
(jordo_99) - MLife

Locale: Nebraska
Maybe find someone who works with denim? on 04/30/2013 10:36:55 MDT Print View

Suggesting a cottage shop is a pretty good idea...I think you'll end up with an overall better pack that way and for little extra cost.

If you think that pack is perfect for all your needs and you're attached to it, try finding someone who does work with denim...they'll already have a machine that's designed for this type of work and likely have experience which is applicable to pack modding.

Jennifer Tran
(jentran) - M

Locale: South Florida
Anybody or anyplace in Connecticut/New England that can modify backpacks (Osprey Hornet 46) on 04/30/2013 10:56:25 MDT Print View

Oh wow, thanks for the welcome and quick responses! =)

I'll take a look at those cottage shops. What I like about the Hornet is the weight, size, compact compartment options and aesthetics. I've gone to REI a couple of times, but it's been hard to find a pack that fits me right (long torso but small waist). A Deuter (forget the model name) came close but was on the heavier side.

What kind of thread is used to sew up these packs, and would (denim) tailors have that?

William Segraves
(sbill9000) - F - M
Re: Anybody or anyplace in Connecticut/New England that can modify backpacks (Osprey Hornet 46) on 04/30/2013 19:42:00 MDT Print View

FWIW, my experience with the Hornet suggests it's not the size per se that's the problem but the way loading the pack affects the effective torso length. There's not a good functional connection between the bag and the hip belt, so When you load up the bag, it sags relative to the hip belt. This effectively makes the torso length longer.

I understand why you want the pack to work (I like enough things about mine that I kept it despite this key flaw), but if you mod it, it's not going to change the fact that the effective length will be load-dependent. If you decide to go ahead with it, do make sure you load it up with what you'll actually be carrying and model various weights you'll carry during your trips before deciding what length, if any, feels right for an acceptable range of those loads.

Good luck!

Best,

Bill S.