Does This Pack Fit?
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Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Does This Pack Fit? on 07/13/2013 21:04:03 MDT Print View

I've no nearby store that carries the GG Crown pack, so had to order it online to examine. I don't have the experience to know whether the fit is correct or not. I've gotten the impression here on BPL that fitting the GG Crown is something of a lottery, but a good pack, if you're lucky and it fits. Can help?

Torso length probably between 18.5 and 19, depending.
(...19" by standard hands on hips, neck bent method)
(...between 18.5 and 19.5" using the McHale measure-to-floor method, but if neck bent, 1" longer than if looking straight ahead)
(...between 18 and 19" using the McHale elbow-to-floor method, for both straight and bent)

The GG Crown regular-sized pack advertises it fits torsos "from 18 to 21." Looks like I'd be on the lower end of the fit range. (Yet oddly, the load lifters would be more horizontal if my torso were longer! Puzzling.)

The top of my iliac crest feels to be about 1" below the top of the hip belt of the pack, when cinched up snugly.

The load lifters are maybe (?) 30 degrees? Maybe less? Should I expect more? It's not a tall pack. In the photo they are snugged up just lightly, not tight.

Base weight of pack is 13 lbs (no food/water in pack for this photo; internal contents not compacted much, either).

To more experienced eyes than mine, does this pack appear to fit?

Pack Fit of GG Crown

Edited by Bolster on 06/06/2014 22:21:36 MDT.

peter vacco
(fluff@inreach.com) - M

Locale: no. california
Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/13/2013 22:17:32 MDT Print View

at 13# , sure it fits great !
if, at higher mass, the belt lets it drop down a bit more, then it may feel "too short". then things are nice and light, you stand a better chance of being able to keep the pack up nice and high where god intended it to be, and all is well.

once they start to droop down, then the pack hits your butt, which feels like it's cutting off the air to the legs.
you gonn'a have to load it up, go a long one, and see if when you are tired, hot , and bathed in sweat if it still stays up there.
you get fagged out near the end of a long day, you going to droop a bit too (gray hair ). it all adds up.

see where the straps touch your shoulders in back ? on me, that is a Very tender subject. much pain if they lay there over long miles.
with others, perhaps not so much.

bottom line :
to my eye, it's close to being too short. but since you already have it, this Needs a Long Hike !
one must really go out and try things to find out. even if you crash and burn, at least you bring back knowledge. this is always good.
this thing is a backpack. unfortunately, analysis means all but nothing, as almost nobody really, actually, for true, knows how they frikk'n work.

cheers,
v.

Paul McLaughlin
(paul) - MLife
Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/13/2013 23:18:34 MDT Print View

I would say you are at the top end of the range for that pack to fit, and with only 13 lbs in it it might sag if loaded more. OTOH, the next size up (if I read the GG website right) is 4" taller, which is going to be too big for you.

If I were fitting you for a pack (and I did sell packs for several years) I'd aim to have your iliac crest at the middle of the belt.

What weight range do you expect for your typical trip? If you're looking at 20-25 lbs I expect you;'ll be happy with this pack if it feels good now. If you expect to get up into the 30's much my suspicion is things will sag enough to make you wish it was taller. Try it with the kind of load you expect to carry and see how it feels.

Haven't seen that pack in person. Is there any adjustment in what I call the "point of departure" - where the lifter strap departs from the shoulder strap?

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/13/2013 23:42:31 MDT Print View

What Paul said. It fits but it is on the far short end of the scale, and it is likely under certain circumstances to sag shorter, but is never going to suddenly expand - unless you trap some live marmots inside.

Most likely you could go to the next size up. All in all probably better to go a bit too long than a bit too short. Ideal is what feel best for you when you used it as you intend to use it. That said the "in-store" ideal for a lightweight load might be closer to vertical on the shoulder straps where they attach to the pack.

Hip belt where you personally like it, but if you tend to hitch it "in-store" higher than usual, then you really should go with the next size up. Whether or not this is a symptom of compensating for too short a pack, as Paul mentioned you will then be much more likely to discover some time during the day that it just slipped/sagged the a small distance from acceptable into the uncomfortable zone.

Edited by millonas on 07/13/2013 23:51:33 MDT.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/13/2013 23:46:37 MDT Print View

"unless you traps some live marmots inside"

It would be far more entertaining to see it with live wolverines inside.

--B.G.--

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/13/2013 23:52:51 MDT Print View

Marmots are easier on UL fabrics.

Nathan Coleman
(RockChucker30) - M
Pack Fit on 07/14/2013 06:28:38 MDT Print View

As stated, the pack will be fine at light loads with that load lifter angle. It really isn't that hard to get a pack to be comfortable with light loads. As the load weights increase the difficulty of designing a comfortable pack increases as well.

John Holmes
(jcholmes)

Locale: SouthEastern US
Load it up, then check fit on 07/14/2013 07:50:21 MDT Print View

As mentioned by others, pretty much any pack will feel great at 13 lbs. What matters is how it feels with a representative (full) load, and most importantly knowing the limits of the packs usability.

I own 2 Granite Gear packs...a Crown VC Long and a Blaze AC Regular. I have a 21" torso measurement, and a base weight of 13-17 lbs depending on season. I love both packs...both fit me perfectly. Experience tells me:

The Crown VC is great to 25 lbs total weight. Above that the UL suspension starts to droop and sag and generally starts failing to do it's job.

Enter the Blaze AC. Good to 35-38 lbs. Awesome pack when extra water, long periods without re-supply or bear canisters are planned.

Hope this helps, and good luck finding your perfect pack(s)

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Thanks for analysis. on 07/15/2013 00:18:50 MDT Print View

Thanks for the analysis, folks. I can easily return the pack and have no problem doing so.

First a few answers to questions:

(a) In the photo, what may appear to be shoulder strap wrapped completely around the shoulder--the shadow hides the fact that the load lifters actually pull the shoulder straps off the back part of my shoulder about 1/2 inch in places. Contact is mostly from the top to the front of the shoulder. This may allay Peter’s concern of the straps touching my shoulders on the back.

(b) I was goofing with different pants positions during the photo, and in this photo had hiked my pants waaaay up to get the pants belt above the pack belt. So the top of the white pants in the photo doesn’t represent my actual beltline, which wants to be exactly in the same place as the middle of the pack’s hip-belt (darn it). My iliac crest is just below the point of my elbow--about 1 inch (or maybe a little more) below the top of the hip belt.

(c) Ttl pack weight for a typical 4-day would be about 25 lbs. For a 7-day trip (max for me) would be around 30 lbs. I have read many reports that this pack “poops out” around 30-35 lbs, (supposedly rated for 35 but most people report 30 is a better maximum), and I don’t expect to carry more than 30 with this pack. (I’d always use it with its somewhat floppy framesheet in place, never frameless).

(d) “Is there any adjustment in the point of departure--where the lifter strap departs from the shoulder strap?” No, there’s no adjustment at the lifter/shoulder strap junction, that’s sewn. The LL adjustment is a buckle near the top of the lifter at the top of the pack.

What are folks keying on, to make the diagnosis of pack-a-little-too-short? Is it the angle of the load lifters? I would like to learn how to make this diagnosis myself.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Pack Fit on 07/15/2013 17:10:43 MDT Print View

"As stated, the pack will be fine at light loads with that load lifter angle. "


Even the load lifter in the picture are at the low end of the sufficient angle so, yeah they are ok, but if it slips only an inch then the comfort could become an issue. And it's not just the distribution of weigh on the shoulders but als the amount the pack can potentially lean back.

IMHO he should try to find a torso size where with a very light weight the straps attach at or slightly above vertical, so if he ever wants to carry a much larger weight (but this should tested it if possible with that weight) the straps should attach higher on the back.

"What are folks keying on, to make the diagnosis of pack-a-little-too-short? "

I am keying on the place where the straps attach to your pack relative to the top of you shoulders. "Ideal" is for these to be straight back at the top, not as they usually tell you at the store, wrapped slightly around. Your ideal pack torso length would be a pack that does this with the load you want to carry and the way you actually wear your hip belt. It is basic geometry to a large extent - you want the pack to sit naturally close to your back and the best position for this is straight back, not up too much or down too much. In such a situation the load lifters act the way they are supposed to - to slightly tweak the curvature of the shoulder straps - not as a major crutch. In fact for light weight loads it might be better to ere on the side of too long as that will automatically put the weight mostly on your waist belt for more or a variety of torso lengths. I'm not saying it is easy to find such a perfect fit, but if you need to use you load lifters to get a comfortable carry then this may be a sign that your fit is a bit off. best thing is to try a longer pack.

Edited by millonas on 07/15/2013 17:21:08 MDT.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Pack Fit on 07/15/2013 18:01:43 MDT Print View

"I am keying on the place where the straps attach to your pack relative to the top of you shoulders. "Ideal" is for these to be straight back at the top, not as they usually tell you at the store, wrapped slightly around. Your ideal pack torso length would be a pack that does this with the load you want to carry and the way you actually wear your hip belt."

You mean like this?

pack strap

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Pack Fit on 07/15/2013 18:03:52 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 14:57:58 MST.

Matt Dirksen
(NamelessWay) - MLife

Locale: Mid Atlantic
Re: Re: Re: Pack Fit on 07/15/2013 21:36:14 MDT Print View

Hey, is that Dick Kelty?!

:)

Anyway, I also agree with Mark that it "appears" that the pack (in your photo) is a tiny bit too small. In my recollection (of fitting zillions of packs for many years back in the 90's) that load lifters would ideally be situated at a 45 degree angle, and begin somewhere further down toward the front of shoulder. This is so the lifters have the "opportunity" to evenly distribute both the downward and rearward thrust of the pack while you walk. If the lifters start toward the front of the shoulder, it allows for the force to be better absorbed on the front of the shoulder, not on the top. (I also admit that a lot has changed in 20 years, so each pack manufacturer may have their own specific recommendations.

I do remember that a lot of people trying out their new internal frames would typically complain of a stiff neck. This is usually due to this particular force hitting more on the top of the shoulder, not the front. I believe this is due to the following:

1) Putting the pack on with a loose hip belt, but with tightened shoulder, sternum, and load lifting straps
2) yanking down on the load lifters, before properly tightening the shoulder straps.
3) yanking on the sternum strap - something which is really only designed to keep the straps from falling off your shoulders, nothing more. When the sternum strap is pulled too tight, the shoulder straps shift more toward your neck, and target the trapezius, a muscle I suspect not really designed to absorb repetitive downward thrust.

In general, finding the right pack that fits is no different then finding the right shoe that fits. Some packs will not feel right, no matter how hard you try. Sadly, this may take a few months and fifty miles before you conclude this.

On the other hand, I always suggested people to think of the adjustments on an internal frame like manual transmission in a car. On the trail, you may find yourself raising the pack a bit higher on your lumbar, tightening the belt, loosening the shoulder straps, unhooking the sternum strap... etc. It boils down to whatever your body "tells" you to do.

Matt

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Pack Fit on 07/15/2013 21:44:34 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 14:58:30 MST.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pack Fit on 07/15/2013 21:46:03 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:00:37 MST.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Pack Fitting as Artform! on 07/15/2013 22:30:35 MDT Print View

I’m very grateful (and somewhat abashed) for the analysis and discussion, folks. Thank you. This outpouring of experience and wisdom for a newcomer to BPL like me. (Matt's analysis of neck pain very interesting!)

Pack fitting must be a voodoo art. It’s really confusing to me. For example, consider that:

(1) The mfgr says the GG Crown fits 18-21. I am 18.5-19, meaning I’m within the stated range, but in the smaller end of the range, indicating the pack is perhaps a little *large* for me. But maybe the mfgr is being optimistic with the range.

(2) The pack hip belt seems to “want” to fit me so my iliac crest is about 1” from the top. Ideally the crest would be right in the middle of the hip belt, with crest about 2” from the top of the belt. The hip belt being further away from the shoulder straps than ideal (ie, the crest hitting high in the belt) would indicate a pack that’s on the large size--ie, the belt and shoulder straps should be closer together.

(3) Researching BPL, I found one owner of the Crown who reported a 19.5 torso (inch longer than me) and he reported the pack fit him well. I know that’s anecdotal, but if I use that as a datapoint, I could tentatively conclude size of pack is somewhere between “close enough to too large” but with this single datapoint it would be difficult to conclude "too small."

(4) When I load the pack with 27 lbs and take a short hike, it seems I get more weight on hips than on shoulders--the hotspot is in the lower spine above tailbone area, possibly thanks to this silly (well, silly to me) venting system on the backside that concentrates weight into small areas of padding. More weight on hips than shoulders generally warns of a pack that may be too large.

>>> All of the above would indicate that if the pack doesn’t fit, it falls on the side of being a little too large for me. Yet the consensus in this thread is solidly the opposite, that the pack is, if anything, too small for me. (If it’s too small for me with a torso of around 19, what’s it like for someone with a torso of 21--which is in the advertised range of fit? How much will the shoulder straps wrap on that guy? How level or even inverted the load lifters?)

Then I found one BPL report where an owner says: “I have the crown vc and it is an extremely comfortable pack for me. If the top of the frame sheet is just above your shoulders when you seat the hip belt where you like it the frame is the right length. The shoulder straps should just wrap over the top of your shoulders where it connects to the pack.”

That would seem pretty similar to my fit. The top of the framesheet sits about 2” above my shoulders and 1” below the bottom of my ears (when loaded with a near-max of 27 lbs). I don’t know how much “just” means for ideal wrap-over; on me the wrap-over is roughly 1” when I put a straight edge across my shoulder and measure to the attachment point of the shoulder strap. But if the pack sits “just above your shoulders,” it is likely the back-wrap of the shoulder straps will be an inch or two.

Another BPL poster says: “I doubt you will ever get a 45 deg angle on the load lifters on that particular pack [Crown]. The load lifter angle varies a lot pack to pack and person to person…That being said, in general, many of the packs nowadays have load lifters that are far from fully functional and really provide little actual function. Some are really only there for show. In order for load lifters to be 100% functional then the frame or stays of the pack need to extend almost to ear height. If the load lifters on any given pack are only attached to the pack material and not the frame then they are basically there for show.”

Well, maybe so. This pack does appear to be shorter (meaning Y axis, in photo above), wider (Z), and higher profile (X) than other packs of the 60L size I’ve seen. It doesn't even reach ear height. And, the frame is notoriously floppy, so I don't know how much lifting these "lifters" were ever designed to do. (They do, however, keep the shoulder straps off the back of the shoulder.)

At this time, I’m suspicious this pack is BOTH too large AND too small for me! So I’ll definitely be taking the advice of all the folks in this thread who wisely tell me to load it up and try it out. Will be able to do that in a few days, and will report back. Also I have an email into GG’s CS, will be interesting to see what they say…I’m open to their Blaze as an alternative.

Edited by Bolster on 07/15/2013 22:43:58 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Pack Fitting as Artform! on 07/15/2013 23:05:45 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:01:08 MST.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Hypercritical on 07/15/2013 23:13:44 MDT Print View

Wow, 2" off. That's a far piece for a manufacturer. They must get an awful lot of unhappy customers.

I overstated using the term "hot spot;" more like "hypercritically searching for even potential problems during a short walk," but I'll have more and better data after a few days. If there's a problem, I'll flush it out and report.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Hypercritical on 07/15/2013 23:20:04 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 14:59:55 MST.

Matt Dirksen
(NamelessWay) - MLife

Locale: Mid Atlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pack Fit on 07/15/2013 23:22:43 MDT Print View

I hate to disagree with you, but most of the external framed packs that I dealt with never had load lifters, whatsoever. My 30 year old Super Tioga in the basement does not, nor did most of the primary brands in the market back then. The first load lifters I saw were on Lowe, Gregory, and old TNF internal framed packs back in the mid 80's. I do recall there were only a handful of external frames with load lifters, but that was not until the mid/late 90's when they were desperately trying to "innovate" to keep up with the internal frame market. Given how external frames worked (all the the pack weight goes straight to your hips, while the shoulder straps simply keep the pack from falling backwards) load lifters were not warranted, in my opinion.

But I totally agree with you that packs carrying lighter loads may not "need" the angle to be at 45 anymore, and thats why I'd suggest to consult the manufacturer, but I believe it is still a general "rule of thumb". Personally, I prefer a taller/thinner pack. The closer the pack's center of gravity to mine, the less overall force it will exert against my upper body. If this means the pack frame ends somewhere at a height consistent with the bottom of my ear lobe, so be it. Besides, with less weight, there is much less risk of instability - a risk when the weight is too high.

(I also see that it seems REI still recommends 45 degrees: http://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/backpacks-adjusting-fit.html )

Of course, with UL packs these days, load lifters probably aren't doing much of anything whatsoever. Kind of like the tail bone, I guess. I'm still waiting for the shirt/vest/jacket to slip on which is the suspension system for whatever stuff I am carrying. Given how light everything is nowadays, why toss it all on my back when I could just distribute it all over me? (tangent alert...)

:)

Mark Ries
(mtmnmark) - M

Locale: IOWAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!
Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/15/2013 23:51:09 MDT Print View

That looks like an OK fit in my book

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Pack Fit on 07/16/2013 00:06:08 MDT Print View

"I hate to disagree with you, but most of the external framed packs that I dealt with never had load lifters, whatsoever. My 30 year old Super Tioga in the basement does not, nor did most of the primary brands in the market back then."

Lets think this out. On most external frames the shoulder staps connect inside of the outer frame tubes, usually 3 or 4 inches away from the frame. So where would you connect the load lifter? I once saw an external where the load lifter connected to the pack bag; didn't seem like a good design. I don't doubt there might have been some externals with lifters, but probably as Matt suggests in later years when companies were trying to compete with the popularity of internals.

An effective load lifter needs to connect to a high frame above the shoulder strap connection point, where we get the 45% angle. McHale's P&G extensions and By-pass Harness work extremely well for heavier loads. But for the kind of loads we typically carry as lightweight hikers and the typical light packs on the market, most load lifters aren't going to be very effective. They might pull the pack closer to the back, but they aren't going to work like a real load lifter on the heavy hauler internals.

We can speculate all we want about the OP's fit, but until he puts all his gear, food, water, and fuel in it; and goes for an all day hike; then reports back with good pictures -- it is just conjecture. The pack looks short to me, but it might be okay.

michael levi
(M.L) - F

Locale: W-Never Eat Soggy (W)affles
re on 07/16/2013 01:07:41 MDT Print View

My current zpacks pack fits about like that, I had another pack before that was actually too long for my torso though.

When its too long it feels like the packs moves around too much, and one too short feels like a school backpack full of books. The pack thats short has a more nimble feel to it, and rides a little higher on the back. I like this feel personally.

I have no idea what im even talking about, but I hope you get something out of it.

Like Nick Gatel says, use the pack, try a new pack, eventually you will find what works.

Matt Dirksen
(NamelessWay) - MLife

Locale: Mid Atlantic
Re: don't carry it- wear it! on 07/16/2013 05:34:22 MDT Print View

"Like Nick Gatel says, use the pack, try a new pack, eventually you will find what works."

Just like shoes!

I guess in the 20th century, we carried our backpacks.

Nowadays, UL finally allows us to actually "wear" them.

Matt

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 07:55:11 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:01:45 MST.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 09:23:54 MDT Print View

"Funny, my Dads old Kelty external frame had load lifters to account for the non adjustable frame. Of course, that was in 1964. When did internal frame packs hit the market?"

You may want to read this. Kelty Packs

All the brochure pictures were from the early 60's -- probably 1963. I grew up with Kelty packs and don't remember any kind of load lifters available from Kelty or the after market. And there were several companies that made add-on stuff for Kelty packs, especially A16. But it is possible someone added load lifters.

The Trailwise external packs had what looked like load lifters, these were adjustable shoulder straps that attached to cross frame. This was the only attachment for the top of the straps.

Early Coleman Peak 1 packs with the plastic frames DID have load lifters. Probably late 70's or early 80's.

In case Ike pops up with his Aarn stuff, he might want to check out Bal-Paks from the late 70's or early 80's.

Supposedly Greg Lowe made the first internal pack in 1967. I didn't pay much attention to internal packs in the early days, but don't remember load lifters until Gregory released the Cassin in the late 70's or early 80's. Internals were mostly used by alpine climbers and not very popular until 1984 when Colin Fletcher released the Complete Walker III. Fletcher made internals popular. My 80's vintage Mountain Smith Frostfire internal had lifters.

Richard Fischel
(RICKO) - F
where you are wearing teh hip belt on 07/16/2013 09:41:34 MDT Print View

can you try wearing the pack so that the hip belt is more centered on the top of your hip bone. if you raise the pack up an inch or two this way, the geometry will look better.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 10:00:36 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:03:12 MST.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 10:28:05 MDT Print View

Dave,

It is hard to see the details. But it looks like the Trailwise. Straps connect at the bottom of the frame and then loop over the mesh panel and are connected to the cross frame with adjustable straps. I may be wrong. Looks like one of the newer frames that were made after Mr. Kelty sold the company.

Coleman Peak 1 below (from the Complete Walker III illustration)

coleman peak 1

Tanner M
(Tan68)
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 10:55:33 MDT Print View

Great!
Models A, B, & C.
They were order by numbers before order by numbers was cool. Model A compartmentalizes misery, B welcomes it, and C wallows in misery.

Looks like side compression straps hadn't been invented. Reading about the baffles as a sort of substitute makes you realize how handy they can be. I don't recall side compression straps on these types of bags. I only had very little experience with these frames, though.

dan mchale
(wildlife) - MLife

Locale: Cascadia
Trailwise on 07/16/2013 13:04:46 MDT Print View

Not sure if this is stealing this thread away but here's a link to a pic of a Trailwise external harness. http://www.auctionflex.com/showlot.ap?co=1&weiid=8777923&lang=En

The harness was completely free-floating behind the mesh panel like Nick was describing. That's where the height adjustment of the base of the shoulder pads were, behind the mesh, and the height adjustment straps anchored at the base of the frame behind the mesh I think. The top of the pads connected to the frame via the load lifters. The straps behind the mesh created an X with the right shoulder pad anchor point being on the opposite side of the frame at the base and vice versa.

As Nick said, Gregory's first load lifter pack came out in the late 70's or so. I remember seeing the first one about then. Before that, Gregory made externals called Sunbird. I sold quite a few of those BITD, from the early 70s for a couple years. That company collapsed, rumor has it because of a bad magazine review, and Wayne made a comeback with his Cassin. I'm trying to remember who he worked for in between those ventures.....I think is was a well known outdoor clothing company at the time.....it will come to me......here company, come on, here cute little company.....

Here is a link showing Wayne and his wife wearing Sunbirds. I did not know he worked for A-16 before that! http://www.adventure16.com/content.asp?itemid=468

Gregory history;

http://www.inov8.au.com/compass/gregoryhistory.html

I think the company I was trying to remember could be Gerry.

Edited by wildlife on 07/16/2013 13:52:22 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Trailwise on 07/16/2013 14:26:19 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:04:20 MST.

Tanner M
(Tan68)
Re: Re: Trailwise on 07/16/2013 14:33:32 MDT Print View

We stopped having to drag out meat home from the forest.

I don't know. I was told internal packs were better because they weren't quite so rigid and moved a bit with the person. I may have been told BS.

dan mchale
(wildlife) - MLife

Locale: Cascadia
off with the head on 07/16/2013 14:52:14 MDT Print View

Off the top of my head; there is Zpacks, Luxurylite, Daryl at this website with his creations, and probably much more we just don't get to see. The concept is not dead. I would love to design an external.....maybe in the coming decade. I have plenty of ideas to put together. I've certainly modified enough of them. Anyone remember Gregory's Kelty Conversion kit that made it possible to put his Sunbird belt on a Kelty? I used to sell those retail back in the early 70s. There are quite a few hunting packs using molded Carbon sheets as external hybrids.

Edited by wildlife on 07/16/2013 14:53:28 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Modularity on 07/16/2013 14:54:26 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:03:46 MST.

dan mchale
(wildlife) - MLife

Locale: Cascadia
all elbows on 07/16/2013 15:27:51 MDT Print View

Just to get back on topic, I noticed the OP thinks I have an elbow measurement involved in my spine measurement method. That is not the case. There is an elbow measurement but it is not for measuring the spine.

The OP's pack is certainly not too long. Too bad the overall frame can't be slightly longer while keeping the harness height the same. I would get the next size up or at least try it if the harness is no more than an inch higher. The OP say that with 27 lbs in it that it does such and such. Those are the pics we need to see.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 15:31:49 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:02:24 MST.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F
Find out on 07/16/2013 15:47:39 MDT Print View

Go hiking for a full day with the max weight youd ever stuff in that pack

Thats the ONLY way to be sure

Rather than ask BPLers

;)

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Trailwise on 07/16/2013 15:51:09 MDT Print View

"What ever happened to the external pack? Why did it lose it's love."

One person caused it: Colin Fletcher.

In The Complete Walker(1968) and The New Complete Walker (1974) he extolled the virtues of Trailwise packs, Pivetta and Easy Hiker boots. That put those products on the map.

In The Complete Walker III (1984), his new favorite pack was the Gregory Cassin. Wayne Gregory will tell you he owes his success to Fletcher.

Maybe I should mention that Dan McHale thru hiked the JMT unsupported as a teenager in 11 days using an external frame -- a Camp Trails, I think. Maybe that is why he learned how to make a pack that fits and carries correctly :)

dan mchale
(wildlife) - MLife

Locale: Cascadia
Camp Trails on 07/16/2013 15:56:09 MDT Print View

Not sure what you mean there Nick. My Camp Trails external was plenty comfortable for that trip - I'm sure better than what many carry today. I only started with 40 lbs. It really had nothing to do with me making packs. I still have the one my brother had and still look at it fondly. I never had any problems carrying my CT. After I wore that pack out I switched to a Kelty BB5. Making packs came later after watching my buddies at Wilderness Experience start up. I only started because it looked fun and I wanted to try an internal with a better full wrap belt. The Camp trail frame was cool - made of a Magnesium alloy. It's pretty featherweight. People wanted light stuff back then too. All the nonsense about traditional backpacking is nonsense. Not everyone was dumb back then.

Getting back to that Crown; that's far too big of a jump to the next size. I think Bob Gross mentioned getting the hipbelt slightly higher. Otherwise, it would be good for all of us to see the pack with the actual weight in it. In the most basic sense the fit is OK but the information we have is limited.

Edited by wildlife on 07/16/2013 17:21:37 MDT.

Tanner M
(Tan68)
Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 17:19:15 MDT Print View

Well, this is turning out to be a good thread. I have learned some things.

Matt Dirksen
(NamelessWay) - MLife

Locale: Mid Atlantic
Re: Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 17:24:34 MDT Print View

4"?

Wow. You are right- that really could be "over the top." Otoh, I'd still be curious to see the pack fully loaded down (with the weight of a few hundred fabulous BPL opinions), just to see how much it settles.

(I sure remember the Cassin. My cuticles cringe just thinking about getting all that darn Velcro separated just to switch out a hip belt. In my teen-aged days of outdoor retail, I still have this fuzzy recollection of a gear training workshop I attended in '87 where Wayne Gregory was there showing us how to fit his packs. Since REI had only just opened a couple of stores in the East back then, I guess our outfit was one of his bigger brick&mortar clients back then.)

I distinctly remember co-workers treated him like a rock star for some reason, having him sign catalogs & such.

I was more partial to Lowe's packs, I guess.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 07/16/2013 18:23:48 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:05:16 MST.

Michael Wainfeld
(Adox)

Locale: EastCoast
Camp Trails Pack on 07/16/2013 19:10:55 MDT Print View

DSC_0111

DSC_0102

My old Camp Trails, circa 1970 I think

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Camp Trails Pack on 07/16/2013 19:33:19 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:05:49 MST.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Camp Trails Pack on 07/16/2013 19:51:34 MDT Print View

Hey -

The hip belt is on the wrong side ;)

Michael Wainfeld
(Adox)

Locale: EastCoast
Hip Belt on 07/16/2013 20:23:57 MDT Print View

i know-I shoulda flipped the belt around before I took the photo! btw-3lb 5oz, and I remember it being a real easy pack to "live" out of.

DSC_0107

DSC_0108

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Easy Living on 07/16/2013 20:42:04 MDT Print View

Excellent observation.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Torso lenght confusion on 07/16/2013 21:33:35 MDT Print View

Delmar,

There was an interesting thread about a month ago discussing the issue of pack fits. Maybe someone can point you to that one. Anyway there are 2 basic uncertainties in sizing, different people wear packs differently, and pack companies seem to have different definitions of the "proper" torso range, as well as different ways of measuring said length. The latter can be effected by commercial interests as well, where pack companies try to squeeze all the torso length into a minimum number of fixed sizes.

A conclusion is that both the official measurement of your own torso length and the official recommended length of the pack should be taken with a huge grain of salt. What IS universal, however, is if you find a pack that fits you "perfectly", and then measures the precise distance from the middle of the belt to the shoulder strap attachment, then if you find another pack with exactly that measurement (you have to measure it yourself because most pack companies only give you "recommended", not actual measurements) then unless it is a radically difference style of pack, that pack will also have a "perfect" fit. You can call the companies and ask for these specific measurement, but I highly recommend you figure out THAT measurement.

From the picture (taking a rough guess) I would suggest you measure the distance of that pack from the middle of the belt to the shoulder attachment point, and add about 1 inch to that. I'm guessing that that number is close to your "true" torso length, but keep in mind that in order to match it to another pack you have to get the specific measurement, NOT the recommended torso length. Was that clear?

Sorry for the long winded explanation. The short one is that "recommended torso lengths" can be mostly BS!

As Dan said, the pack you show in the picture is definitely NOT too long. I think you can take that to the bank. I'm not worthy to lick Dan's old-timey boots on this issue, but hopefully I just gave you an idea of how to resolve the confusion a bit.

The pack you show is not too long, and if anything you might get away with a longer pack as well. I'd try one out if you can manage it - you don't need to necessarily ask for another pack to try - you could go to a store with a tape measure and try on other pack with the right length, and then ask the company in question to tell you the specific length.

Or else get a custom made one. :-)

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Interesting discussion! on 07/17/2013 08:58:53 MDT Print View

Thanks for all the replies! A long time I’ve wanted to learn the mysteries of pack fit and this thread is like a crash course. I’m no longer so focused on this one pack, I’m more interested in pack fit in general. It’s an interesting topic.

@ McHale. Apologies for misunderstanding the elbow measurement. My bad. Although as you observe elsewhere, the bottom of the bent elbow and the top of the iliac crest live in the same neighborhood. At least they surely do for me. I promise to get you and the list a photo of the loaded pack after a walk. I’m a working stiff, and can’t do it today. But as soon as I can, hopefully before the weekend. Thanks for weighing in!

@ Chan. Agreed, but look at how much we’re learning about pack fit by discussing it. Previously, I thought pack fit could be determined by a trained eye at REI alone (j/k). Now I’m learning there’s no substitute for the hike. (Makes returns more challenging!)

@ Mark. Teacher of the year award goes to you! Excellent info. I will make the measurement you suggest after work and report back.

Y’all might be interested in the laconic reply I got from GG themselves, in an email:

“We reviewed the pictures and the information you sent.  The crown pack does
not have the adjustment potential the Blaze pack has with the shoulder
straps.  From the looks of the picture you might want to loosen up the
straps on the top of the pack and the belt should fit with the center of the
side over the crest of the hip bone.  If information does not help, please
let us know.”

So she (the GG rep) doesn’t like how tight I’ve pulled the load lifters--if they should even be called such. Perhaps they are “top of pack snugger inners.”

When she says “the center of the side,” do you suppose she refers to the side of the body, forward of the iliac crest? In other words, if the iliac crest sits at about 4-5 o’clock and 7-8 o’clock on the body, is she talking about 3 and 9 o’clock? If so, then yes, the hip crest in those places is about half way (2”) down the 4" belt. (Previously I was referencing to the top of the iliac crest when I reported 1" from top of belt.)

HEY! I recognize that Camp Trails pack! That was my first pack as a kid!! Didn't they come in a shocking orange as well?

Edited by Bolster on 07/17/2013 09:28:00 MDT.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Interesting discussion! on 07/17/2013 14:37:15 MDT Print View

I had the Crown, and I carried it last spring and into summer until I decided to return it to REI after serious suspension failure in frameless mode. Despite being advertised as frameless up to 25 lbs., I only found the framesheet usable to about 30 lbs., and frameless not at all. (I realize that you haven't mentioned using it without the framesheet, but I do find it relevant given how GG advertises the pack.)

Based on the photos, I would agree with the consensus that it fits, but is on the short end. My worry is that, based upon my experience with the pack, the frame would collapse too much at heavier loads and really shorten the effective torso length very quickly. You don't have a lot of room for adjusting it.

FWIW, the reason GG advertises the torso length as so long is that they are measuring from where the shoulder straps attach to the bottom of the hipbelt. That measurement would be 19.5" on the pack, thus the reason you have a couple of inches of wrap with a approx. 19" torso. Of course, when you measure your torso, you do it from the iliac crest to the C7 vertebra, which usually equates to the middle of the hipbelt depending on individual preference.

Even given this discrepancy, I still don't get how they could advertize this size all the way up to 21". Personally, the variety of misleading marketing claims surrounding this pack has soured me on the company a bit.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Interesting discussion! on 07/17/2013 16:30:15 MDT Print View

"When she says “the center of the side,” do you suppose she refers to the side of the body, forward of the iliac crest? "

The center of the side of the belt I think. That is about right, but different people have different shapes and likes so this is not always true. But basically, while I don't know the precise question you asked, that response doesn't seem to have too much actual content.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Response on 07/18/2013 00:46:01 MDT Print View

@ Mauritzen: Yes, Clayton, I have studied your several posts on the failure of the pack when frameless, and its limits when framed. They come up quickly on any internet search on the Crown pack. I thought your criticisms were very well articulated and I read them over several times. They're also somewhat rare, as praise for the Crown is overall high (when it fits). Interesting explanation of GG's unique measurement system, thanks.

@ Millonas: I think so: "Center of side of belt" makes sense, but again unique to GG as they don't reference off the top of the iliac crest as seems standard elsewhere. Regards what I asked them: I asked whether they thought the pack fit, and basically repeated my original post at the top of this thread to GG, along with some additional measurements, expected max weights, and also sent them the photo. I also referred GG to this thread, if they were interested in the discussion. I felt their response defined the words "laconic" and "oblique," but they were also prompt and polite.

Edited by Bolster on 07/18/2013 00:55:56 MDT.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Post walk report w/ 25 lbs on 07/21/2013 20:35:07 MDT Print View

Report as requested (finally!):

I slipped away for a 5-mile walk with 25 lbs in the Crown pack. (That would be my pack weight for a 4-night trip). It was filled with my regular gear, and about six cans of fruit added for ballast. I didn’t get any undue weight on either hips or shoulders; no hot spots; the weight seemed spread evenly. I fiddled and adjusted as I went, and the pack seemed plenty comfortable. I could transfer the weight to the hips or to the shoulders with ease, by taking in here and letting out there. I realize this is a short hike but that’s all I found time for. I met my wife at the end of the hike and asked her to take a photo so you could diagnose possible “after-hike-droopiness” as mentioned above. What do you think?Pack After Hike

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Post walk report w/ 25 lbs on 07/21/2013 20:44:36 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:06:58 MST.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Post walk report w/ 25 lbs on 07/21/2013 20:46:24 MDT Print View

Looks like a textbook fit.

M B
(livingontheroad) - M
fit on 07/21/2013 21:13:03 MDT Print View

It really depends on if its comfortable for you.

Plenty of people like to wear their hipbelt lower than normal, and need longer torso due to it.

Some like it a bit high, with no discernable weight on their shoulders at all.

Because packs fit a several inch range, everyones fit is a bit different.

If you can possibly wear it higher, if you desire, to get weight off your shoulders, you have nothing to worry about.

Theres always tradeoffs. Heavier weights will slide down more and make the torso seem shorter, but the larger size packs are heavier too. What you carry most of the time, is usually used to determine whats best overall

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: fit on 07/21/2013 21:37:12 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:06:19 MST.

Mark Ries
(mtmnmark) - M

Locale: IOWAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!
Re: Re: fit on 07/21/2013 22:12:16 MDT Print View

I agree nice fit I think you found a pack that works for you with the weights you want to carry

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Re: fit on 07/21/2013 23:24:34 MDT Print View

Looks great. If you like it, go for it!

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
My pack fit on 07/28/2013 20:45:12 MDT Print View

Hi all. Great thread. I'd love feedback my Ohm 2.0 fit. I measured my torso at 18.5" (per the ULA website) and purchased a Medium Ohm (rated for 18" to 21"). I moved the adjustable hip belt towards the top, moving the length of the torso towards the shorter end of the range.

I'm planning to use this pack for the JMT. In the photo, I have it loaded with most of my planned weight of 28 lbs, including a WM Summerlite, an Exped Downmat UL7 (used as back padding), a BV500 with 7 days of food, and a Tarptent Notch. I'm missing some weight in my cooking equipment, clothing, water, and a few miscellaneous items. My Ohm comes in at 738 g / 26 oz, stripped of all features including the foam back panel.

FYI, I know ULA recommends against using the Ohm with a bear canister. I also have a Circuit and can't discern any positive difference between carrying the can compared to the Ohm when using the thick Dowmat for padding.

Thanks.

Edit: How do I orient the picture correctly? The photo was straight when I uploaded it...

Ohm 2.0 Fit

Edited by passanis on 07/28/2013 20:46:33 MDT.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: My pack fit on 07/28/2013 20:57:44 MDT Print View

Sean, it doesn't look too bad--certainly doable if that's where it's most comfortable for you. Personally, though, I would move it up an inch and a half or so.

Clearly, with the adjustable torso length, the pack fits. You might take it out for a few hikes and just play with where the hipbelt is positioned and see what is most comfortable for you.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/28/2013 22:05:59 MDT Print View

Thanks, Clayton. I'll try moving the hip belt to the top of the adjustment, making the torso as short as possible.

I was a bit unsure when I bought since my 18.5" torso is close to the M (18" - 21") and the small (15" - 18").

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: My pack fit on 07/28/2013 22:29:58 MDT Print View

Sean. IMHO you might want to at least try the next size up. You could go up to 1.5-2 inches longer. It is "OK" where it is at, but it is flirting (fractions of an inch) from being obviously too short.

But at the risk of repetition, the main thing is how it feels on you - with full weight and carried for a whole day. What do I know, you may have tough shoulders. Also, since you effectively have next to no frame, going longer may not help since it will probably eventually just sag lower.

Do yourself a favor, however. Since you are planning on walking 200+ miles carrying a decent amount of weight, at least try out one pack, loaded, and with a frame that can handle that weight well - just for comparison. For 0.5-1 lb more you may discover the weight really just disappears on you back.

Personally I wouldn't do a long trip with that kind of weight with that pack. It would be great for a weekend, especially without the bear can, but on the last part of the JMT you may be schlepping a lot of food. Respect the frame!

Edited by millonas on 07/28/2013 22:34:15 MDT.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Lengthen or shorten torso? on 07/28/2013 23:19:23 MDT Print View

Mark, thanks for your comments. I may have misunderstood Clayton, but my next adjustment was to actually shorten, not lengthen the torso.

I understand your concern about the weaker suspension compared to the Circuit, but I've found the Ohm to be just as comfortable with my equipment (I was surprised the bear canister fits as well as it does).

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/28/2013 23:19:53 MDT Print View

Sorry--I wasn't clear enough. By "up" I meant in torso length, not up in the belt adjustment. In other words, I think you might do well with an extra 1.5" or so of torso length on the pack. I definitely wouldn't go any shorter than you have here.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/28/2013 23:34:09 MDT Print View

Gotcha. Like the OP, I may have incorrectly assumed that I would be at the lower end of the torso range given my measurements.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/28/2013 23:41:47 MDT Print View

"Gotcha. Like the OP, I may have incorrectly assumed that I would be at the lower end of the torso range given my measurements."

The pack is *clearly* at the lowest end of the torso length of the PACK that will be good for you, ergo YOU have a torso at the at the upper end what will work with that pack. It you had a framed pack I would be a bit more positive about it, but if you are going to be forced to carry a lot of the weight on your shoulders, and you are ok with that, then it is perfect.

Possibly go up one size, which is typically about 2 inches longer and see how it feels. Don't go shorter! Any shorter at all is a mistake. However, there may not be all that much you can do with no frame. If you could use a stiffer pad and pack it burrito style (like a ridgerest) then you might be able to reap the benefits of getting a good fit. Otherwise everything may sag a bit on your shoulders with close to 30 lbs on your back. If you are good with that then no problem. Trying this with an inflatable is a bit tricky, but I think I remember several threads on here over the years about doing just that. The volume required for support with an inflatable may seriously eat into your pack volume. An there may be some other issues.

Just try it out with a pack with more of a frame just to see for yourself. You could do this in a store at not cost. You could even bring all your gear in a box.

Edited by millonas on 07/29/2013 00:01:37 MDT.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
re: Ohm Frame on 07/28/2013 23:58:50 MDT Print View

Mark, the Ohm does have a frame, and it's rather robust, even for being so light. It's a pretty ingenious system that has worked for a lot of people. Given that, Sean I think you'll be fine from the point you're at in the picture and higher. Though, you are wearing the pack a bit high on your waist (not a bad thing--I prefer to do that too), so if you hope to adjust it by wearing it a bit lower later in the day, you would need more torso length to make that possible.

One of the great things about having built-in adjustments is how well you can tailor the fit. That just takes time. I'm about to do the fourth or so iteration for the shape of the stays on my HMG Porter, and with each minor adjustment, I learn a lot more about packs. For me, that's part of the fun.

Edited by GlacierRambler on 07/29/2013 00:00:50 MDT.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: re: Ohm Frame on 07/29/2013 00:04:37 MDT Print View

"My Ohm comes in at 738 g / 26 oz, stripped of all features including the foam back panel."

Did it have more than that foam? It sounds like my older GoLite Jam which has exactly that. But is also sounds like even that is gone. Don;t get me wrong, I have and love packs like that, its just that I think there may be slight long-day comfort issue with over 20 lbs, at least for some people.

Edited by millonas on 07/29/2013 00:07:27 MDT.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Re: Re: re: Ohm Frame on 07/29/2013 00:13:47 MDT Print View

Thanks, Mark and Clayton. I was a bit perplexed and measured my torso again and found that I'm at 20" using the ULA measurement. This makes sense now. At 5'8", I'm not sure if it makes sense for me to move up into the 21" - 24" size. That seems big.

Mark, the Ohm has a suspension system beyond the foam pad that I removed (assuming that the foam pad of the Ohm provides little or no suspension benefit).

Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
Does This Pack Fit? on 07/29/2013 01:17:30 MDT Print View

Don't worry about how tall you are. I am 6 foot and have 19.5 inch torso. I may not be following this correctly, but currently you have the hip belt at the top of its range resulting in the shortest torso length possible?

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Re: re: Ohm Frame on 07/29/2013 09:10:13 MDT Print View

Sean,

As we have been discussing in other recent threads, there can be a great variation and confusion over what you "proper" torso sizes is. You can't really measure it with a tape measure, thought using the standard method will give you a ballpark figure. This is because companies only give a recommended range, not actual measurements from the pack, because they define that range somewhat arbitrarily, and because people like to wear their packs slightly differently on their body. So just ignore what you think is the right length. You might want to look for a pack that when worn comfortably and loaded the strap attachment at the top are directly horizontal from the tops of your shoulders, and then measure the distance from the bottom or middle (remember which) of the belt to the place where the straps attach to the pack at the top. That is your actual "torso" length, and you can then use that to help find a pack in the future - by measuring yourself. Sorry for the repetition of this point, but it helped me tremendously in untangling the pack fitting knot. Recently I manage to order two packs online that fit me perfectly first time by figuring this out and asking for specific measurements.

Like Jason, I also have weird measurements. I'm short, but have the torso of someone over 6 feet. Basically a penguin. I also have found good-fitting packs with officially designated small, medium and large sizes.

Edited by millonas on 07/29/2013 09:12:40 MDT.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: My pack fit on 07/29/2013 09:25:25 MDT Print View

Hi Sean,

Beating a dead horse but I'd agree with other responses in that you may find increasing the torso length (by lowering the hip belt) may be more comfortable for you once you creep over the 20lb mark. YMMV. Nice thing is that it only takes a minute to change it back if you find that the adjustment doesn’t work for you.

We have two ULA Ohm 2.0s in my household and I really love this ruck. I have the green version and my daughter has the purple blaze. After seeing her pack, I wish I would have ordered the purple blaze too.

It's nice to hear the bear canister is working for you with this ruck. I'm pondering a JMT hike in the next couple of years and would prefer to use the Ohm instead of purchasing a Circuit.

Happy trails.

Edited by IDBLOOM on 07/29/2013 09:26:15 MDT.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/29/2013 11:01:20 MDT Print View

Thanks everyone for the helpful feedback. I'll adjust the belt to the max torso length and repost a photo.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
If you don't mind... on 07/29/2013 11:04:22 MDT Print View

...could you upload some pics of the bear can in you pack as well?

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/29/2013 19:10:34 MDT Print View

"It's nice to hear the bear canister is working for you with this ruck. I'm pondering a JMT hike in the next couple of years and would prefer to use the Ohm instead of purchasing a Circuit."

Yeah, and the sucky thing is since the Berikade is a bit wider you can't go by that. I found the Bearvault fit a small Exos ok, but to get the Berikade in felt like seams were about to burst. No good.

Edited by millonas on 07/29/2013 19:11:10 MDT.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/30/2013 10:15:05 MDT Print View

Hello. I moved the belt to the lowest setting, providing the longest torso adjustment on this pack size. The photo is a bit darker, but I hope you can still see where the belt attaches to my waist. Would love feedback and suggestions on this adjustment.

updated pack fit

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/30/2013 10:19:20 MDT Print View

See below photo of the BV500 in my Ohm. My Circuit really isn't much bigger in terms of volume. I think ULA really promotes the Circuit as the bear can capable pack because of the extra back padding (mitigated by using the sleeping pad) and the beefier suspension via an aluminum stay (mitigated by keeping pack weight down).

FYI, I have my fingers crossed that the slightly wider Bearikade will fit as well as the BV500. I have one arriving next week.

BV500 in ULA Ohm 2.0

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/30/2013 10:51:40 MDT Print View

Actually, that looks pretty good. I knew I was in trouble with my small Exos 48 when the bearvault just barely squeezed in. LOL

Anyway, one of the few benefits of not having a frame.

Pack looks a bit better now. Gonna go out on a limb and say it is probably as good as you are going to get, and to declare victory. With this style of pack you are going to have to put some of the weigh on your shoulders, and if it feels good to you then maybe switch to worrying about something else.

However I don't withdraw my advice to, just as an experiment and as a future reference, see how the same stuff feels in a pack with more backbone. Don't forget to fill the bear can with 7 day of food first!

Edited by millonas on 07/30/2013 10:59:18 MDT.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/30/2013 10:58:52 MDT Print View

At first I didn't notice much of a difference but it seems that the camera is several inches to a foot higher for your most recent photos. Is it safe to say that where the load lifter straps are sewn to the ruck is about 1" higher than your C7? When I wear my Ohm 2.0 w/ a 20lb ruck, I carry the weight on my hips. I think as long as you aren't carrying the weight on your shoulders then my opinion is this is probably ok but an inch or two taller on the torso length wouldn't hurt.

YMMV.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: My pack fit on 07/30/2013 12:07:01 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:08:02 MST.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Lifters on 07/30/2013 14:00:51 MDT Print View

Interesting. The following questions aren't meant to be argumentative; I'm just trying to learn and understand:

Some of you pointed out that my Crown fit was suspect because load lifters were not angled enough (at perhaps 30 degrees?), but you're giving Sean a pass on his Ohm, and his lifters are at much less angle, approaching flat if the pack sags a little (lifters look about flat in Sean's first photo). Just curious why 30 wasn't enough for the Crown, but 0-5 is OK for the Ohm?

Also, some thought my shoulder straps wrapped too much--don't Sean's wrap about the same amount? Maybe a scootch more?

What I notice as a big difference between the two fits (aside from Sean obviously being younger, better looking, more muscular, and having better posture) is where the hip belt hits, relative to the elbow (the elbow being in proximity of the iliac crest). My photo (old guy on left) would indicate iliac crest about 1" below the top of the side of the belt. Sean's elbow seems a long distance from his hip-belt.

Sean, exactly where is your iliac crest hitting on the belt?two packs

Edited by Bolster on 07/30/2013 14:28:25 MDT.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Lifters on 07/30/2013 14:17:37 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:08:33 MST.

michael levi
(M.L) - F

Locale: W-Never Eat Soggy (W)affles
re on 07/30/2013 15:50:11 MDT Print View

That first picture looks better than the second imho. I don't like my straps to wrap around the shoulder to much.

When I'm on the trail I am constantly adjusting my straps to change things up. Change is good on packs, what feels good for 30 minutes will change. Heck, at least you have load lifters, you have tons of adjustment leeway.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Re: Lifters on 07/30/2013 17:27:22 MDT Print View

I called Chris at ULA after sending him the photo I posted here. He agrees that I should try a large for comparison and he is sending one this week. Thanks to Delmar for creating this thread (and for all of the compliments), and for all the great feedback from everyone here. I'll post another photo early next week with the hipbelt adjusted at the shorter end of the new longer pack.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Lifters on 07/30/2013 17:56:04 MDT Print View

"Some of you pointed out that my Crown fit was suspect because load lifters were not angled enough (at perhaps 30 degrees?), but you're giving Sean a pass on his Ohm, and his lifters are at much less angle,... Just curious why 30 wasn't enough for the Crown, but 0-5 is OK for the Ohm?"

I'll just tell you what my mom told me when she let my sister get away without doing her homework, but not me - "its because we expect more from you".

But seriously you need a "real" frame to get the most out of the load lifters. With a real frame the load lifters will help transfer the weight back to the belt. With a very iffy frame or no frame the most that the load lifters can do is pull the pack closer to your back, so in Seans's case it matters less. Basically I think we have resigned ourselves to Sean being an underachiever in the load-lifer category. ;-)

Edited by millonas on 07/30/2013 18:01:10 MDT.

Miles Spathelf
(MilesS) - MLife
Re: Lifters on 07/30/2013 19:01:33 MDT Print View

From what I've read from various pack manufacturer's guys tend to wear their hipbelts low (sometimes too low) and ladies may wear their hipbelts too high. I know, I know generalizations....

I've had the best comfort wearing my hipbelt so that the middle of the pad is aligned with my iliac crest (which looks more like your pic with the granite gear pack)

I can't tell too well from the photo (angles, body size, etc) but it looks like Sean might be wearing the hipbelt a little lower. However one should be using lighter loads with a frameless, or lightly suspensioned, pack (I know another generalization) so it may matter less in Sean's case.

Of course, it all comes down to personal fit and comfort with your particular pack / load / hiking style.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Re: Re: Lifters on 07/30/2013 21:23:50 MDT Print View

"its because we expect more from you"

LOL LOL I have heard that my whole life! You're channeling the spirit of my parents! Maybe you are some long lost relative, Mark.

Regards the "floppy frame" issue of the Crown: I have cut down my CCF sit pad to fit in snugly with the Crown's plastic frame (which resides in a zippered compartment). Really adds a lot of rigidity for +1.8 oz. Haven't tested it yet. Curious if it will turbocharge the lifters, will watch for that.

@ Dave U - yes, I did catch your comment about the pack fitting. Thanks much.

Edited by Bolster on 07/30/2013 23:29:03 MDT.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Where Shoulder Straps Join on 07/31/2013 20:17:20 MDT Print View

A breadcrumb for anyone subsequently reading this thread, trying to figure out the mysteries of fit. Regards the origin point of the shoulder straps on an internal frame pack, I found this quote in Backpacker's Field Manual, p 41-42:

"For an external frame pack the straps should come off the frame about even with the top of your shoulders. If the straps drop too far down, the pack is too small, and too much weight will be pulled onto your shoulders. if the straps go too far up, the pack is too large, and too little weight will go onto your shoulders. For an internal frame pack the frame stays or frame structure should extend 2 to 4 inches above your shoulders. The shoulder straps should follow the contour of your shoulders and join the pack approximately 2 inches (5cm) below the top of your shoulders."

Edited by Bolster on 07/31/2013 20:35:22 MDT.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Where Shoulder Straps Join on 07/31/2013 22:07:47 MDT Print View

No offense Delmar, but the advice from Backpacker has been so contradictory over the years--even issue to issue--that I don't put much stock in their comments.

Also, they're just wrong. There are a variety of ways that frames can work--i.e., virtual frames, dual stays, framesheets, single stays, framesheets with stays, etc.--, and it's best to understand the benefits of each system and the various tradeoffs in configuration than to make blanket statements such as that.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Where Shoulder Straps Join on 07/31/2013 22:13:27 MDT Print View

nm

Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/15/2013 15:09:10 MST.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Where Shoulder Straps Join on 07/31/2013 22:37:37 MDT Print View

I don't think he is referring to Backpacker magazine, but something called the Backpacker Field Manual.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Re: Re: Where Shoulder Straps Join on 07/31/2013 23:13:57 MDT Print View

He did say "Backpacker's Field Manual" so I assumed it was the magazine. But I checked, and there is a book with that title as well. So I could have been mistaken about that part.

Either way, it is still poor advice.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Re: Re: Where Shoulder Straps Join on 08/01/2013 13:20:02 MDT Print View

"I don't think he is referring to Backpacker magazine, but something called the Backpacker Field Manual."

The fact that it is call a "Field Manual" makes me wonder all by itself. Does this same manual also recommend 6 lb boots and a 2 lb stove?

Anyway, +1 on disagreeing a bit. Ultimately if there is a frame that can handle the weight I don't see any difference in the basic principles involved. If you need to carry partly on your shoulders then the wrap is unavoidable. If you would like to get the weight off our your shoulders as much as possible then straight back is more or less ideal, though you can still rebalance with the load lifters as a crutch for a bit of wrapping around - but only of you have an appropriate frame for the weight you are carrying. Otherwise, as people have been pointing out, all they do is pull the pack closer to the body.

Over the years I have retreated from my initial convert fanaticism that the weight of the pack should be minimized, to the more moderate and sensible view that it is weight you *feel* when you wear the pack that is most important. I realized this can not be measured with any device, and therefore can't be bragged about when posting my gear list.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Where Shoulder Straps Join on 08/01/2013 13:53:29 MDT Print View

"Over the years I have retreated from my initial convert fanaticism that the weight of the pack should be minimized, to the more moderate and sensible view that it is weight you *feel* when you wear the pack that is most important."

hear him, hear him!!

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
BFM Says on 08/01/2013 22:33:10 MDT Print View

OK, I take it you guys don't like the excerpt quoted from BFM. That's fine, be cool, relax, I'm not quoting it as if it were the Koran, but the perspective from BFM does echo some of the commentary in this thread, provides another perspective (a wrong one, as y'all have emphasized), and seems to echo rather closely what pack fitters at REI have told me (certain to invoke a fresh round of criticism of REI).

I can't tell if you're asking about BFM because you're curious, or just to rip it, but since you asked: it's a second edition 2005 book written by one Rick Curtis, "...director of the Outdoor Action Program at Princeton University, one of the largest and most successful college outdoor programs in the country. He lectures regularly on topics ranging from outdoor leadership to risk management. Rick has been backpacking around the world for more than twenty-five years." (From the back cover.) It's not a book exclusively about light or ultralight, but there are sections about light/UL woven in throughout. No 6-lb boots are recommended (where did you get that idea?); he recommends running shoes for 20-lb packs.

I'm not uncritical of the book myself--almost one half of it is devoted to wilderness medicine, and is prone to call for fantastical medical accoutrements that would never actually be carried unless you had a large group with one person's pack devoted to all things medical. And the section on Leave No Trace is insultingly paternal and stupefyingly pedantic, to the point I had to leave the book in the corner a few days before I could pick it up again. (I don't appreciate being lectured to, as if I'm a vandal.) I don't know if it's fair to judge the book's pack-fitting advice by the sections I didn't like, but the fitting information it contained is not rare or unusual--I've encountered similar at many other sources. Here at BPL is the first place I've encountered the "no wrap shoulders even on an internal frame" advice. I'm not arguing--I don't know enough to argue on this topic, or even have firm opinions. I'm merely an information sponge at this point. Mia Culpa, etc. I hope you guys know that I really do appreciate your advice and guidance, and I am paying close attention to it.

Mark, your quote on felt weight sounds like sage advice.

Edited by Bolster on 08/01/2013 22:47:50 MDT.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: BFM Says on 08/02/2013 00:02:09 MDT Print View

Delmar, please know that no insult or offense regarding the BFM is intended. I'm not familiar with the book, and my objection stems only from the universal statement without regard to the context of the different frame systems inherent in UL and LW packs. Unfortunately, given the nature of publishing and the increasingly corporate nature of the outdoor vendors, advice (and "knowledge" in general) has become driven by marketing and meaningless technical claims that reduce complexity rather than acknowledge it. The practical upshot is that, at least for me personally, I tend to distrust those whose experiences I can't verify. That, and I really dislike blanket statements which don't take into account frame construction (seriously--go to REI and see the different systems used in nearly every pack they sell) or individual physiology.

Regarding shoulder wrap, I'm not sure where you drew those conclusions. You'll see a few different recommendations in the forums and in the articles based on the wide ranges of experiences here. The trick is to match your individual body, preferences, and (potential) pack together. Personally, I disagree with Mark here--with the HMG Porter, my currently preferred pack, I like some shoulder wrap, just not the two inches recommended in your quote--more like one. Of course his approach has its merits, but it doesn't fit my trapezius muscles and puts too much stress on the front of my shoulders. For me this is uncomfortable and even painful after fifteen minutes wearing a pack in my house, but for others it works very well. With lighter loads, you have more room to develop and appreciate your personal ideas because there is usually less penalty for error and (sometimes, but not always) the assumption that you'll tailor it to suit your needs.

Even so, there are some basic facts about pack fitting which don't often make it into marketing campaigns, where models are more often than not wearing poorly-fitting packs stuffed with nearly weightless fillers for dramatic visual effect. I'd recommend you start with Dave Chenault's BPL article "How Packs Work." It's a great introduction to the subject, though not without debatable claims.

Edited by GlacierRambler on 08/02/2013 00:13:30 MDT.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Does This Pack Fit? on 08/02/2013 02:04:19 MDT Print View

bump shoulder strap

Above: Here is a 35lb load with my McHale Bump. Kind of hard to see the shoulder strap, but there is no shoulder strap wrap. Note that I have a lot of curvature in my upper back. This works perfectly for me. The shoulder straps keep the pack stable and the weight is carried by the hip belt.

LBP shoulder strap 2

Above is my McHale LBP 36 (no load lifters). Again, no shoulder strap wrap.

---------------------------

IMO, load lifters are not needed with these kinds of loads -- both packs were about 35 lbs for multi-day desert trips with little water availability.

Also load lifters are not needed with a "lightweight" back. If a lightweight pack has load lifters, the manufacturer is trying to compensate for a poor design, mostly the lack of a proper frame, IMO.

The only time I use load lifters is in winter on extended trips. The heavier weight causes the yoke to shift and the pack pulls away from my back. With my McHale LBP, frame extensions are added to the internal frame, along with load lifters; Dan calls this system P&G Bayonets with a By-pass Harness. Now the load lifters are adjusted independently from the shoulder straps. When both the lifters and shoulder straps are adjusted I get a tiny bit of shoulder strap wrap. The frame extension is several inches above my shoulders and the angle of the load lifter strap is approximately 45 degrees. Unfortunately I don't have a picture to show.

Below is a picture of one of my external frame packs. No shoulder strap wrap.

Kelty pack

Anyway, it works for me.

Edited for spelling.

Edited by ngatel on 08/02/2013 09:39:52 MDT.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Re: Re: BFM Says on 08/02/2013 09:35:47 MDT Print View

"...my objection stems only from the universal statement without regard to the context of the different frame systems inherent in UL and LW packs."

Point well made and taken. Thanks for the Chenault article ref.

Sometimes people sound obtuse when they're simply trying to learn, so please forgive, but: if the "back part of the shoulder wrap," (which Nick dispenses with completely -- thanks for the photos, Nick) is problematic, prone to causing shoulder pain, and if load lifters on light internal packs serve to pull the the shoulder strap away from the back of the shoulder (this is certainly the case with my pack, and appears to be the case with Nick's pack, too), aren't the load lifters serving to minimize or negate the "back wrap of the shoulder strap" problem? Just curious.

Edited by Bolster on 08/02/2013 09:50:14 MDT.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Re: Re: BFM Says on 08/02/2013 15:29:31 MDT Print View

"aren't the load lifters serving to minimize or negate the "back wrap of the shoulder strap" problem? Just curious."

It isn't the back wrap per se - more like what it indicates. If the shoulder straps wrap they are capable of loading weight on tops of your shoulders. If you use the load lifters they in effect modify both the effective torso length and the force on your shoulder - customized to your body. The load lifters pull some of the weight off your shoulders and apply it to the frame, and hence back on the belt.

If you have a framed pack with a length that is correct for you, and the straps go straight back as shown in Nick's McHale pack pics, then it is nearly physically impossible for the straps to push down on your shoulders - at most they push in on the font of your shoulders to hold the pack close to your back. In my view this is ideal. In this case load lifter are, strictly speaking, unnecessary. Anyway, the main thing is to get the weight off your shoulders and onto your hips as much as you feel you would like - or not at all if that is your bag (um, no pun intended). However you get there is ok, but the straight back rule is a good guideline.

An issue with compensating for wrap with the load lifters it that it only takes a little change of, or slight miss-adjustment of them to suddenly put the weight back on your shoulders. The more wrap, the easier for this to suddenly happen. One the suddenly become slack all that weigh is back on your shoulders. You might find yourself fiddling with them a lot during the day. None of that is as likely if you have the straight back config.


So, to repeat, if the straps go straight back then there can be no downward components of force on the tops of your shoulders - basic mechanics. To be nerdily precise, the force down on you shoulders (without load lifters) will be proportional to the sine of the angle of the straps with the horizontal. The force the load lifters can subtract from the tops of your shoulders is likewise proportion the sine of *their* angle with respect to horizontal as well. So if you have a wraparound with straight back load lifters, for instance, you are guaranteed not to be able to do anything about this loading.

It is more important for more weight, but speaking personally I've grown to appreciate the issue even for LW loads.

BTW I have never been saying it it an unbreakable rule, as some people have implied. Do whatever works! Just understand the mechanics first - that is always more reliable than reading anyone's (or any book's) opinion and not knowing why or even if the advice makes any sense.

Edited by millonas on 08/02/2013 15:57:32 MDT.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Re: Re: BFM Says on 08/02/2013 16:55:07 MDT Print View

The real issue with load lifters is the way that they help balance the load--which depending upon pack design can vary from none-at-all (no matter what you do) to quite a lot. There are a lot of mechanics involved, much more so because of the way that they impact the overall harness system by applying tension to the pack frame.

With the Crown and the Ohm 2.0, I found that the floppy portion of the frame negated any major benefits for load lifters. The delrin hoop at the top of the Ohm's frame is fairly floppy, and since it was a little on the large side for all my gear, I couldn't use that to stabilize the frame. The framesheet on the Crown is just down right bendy, and it had the same effect up top as the Ohm. All that I found them useful for was adjusting pressure points from hiking all day. Not that this is a complaint, it was a welcome tool as I tend to shift my load around in small ways throughout the day. They just don't work like traditional load lifters (which still don't lift any load) that require a rigid frame.

Personally, I have found that with a well-fitted pack, I can achieve the same marginal benefits simply by slightly adjusting the length of the shoulder straps themselves. Perhaps with 35+ pounds of all-day hiking I might miss them, but I never need to carry that much these days. I certainly never had a problem with heavier winter loads.

The real trick with pack-fitting is understanding effective torso length, torso-length collapse with weight, and your own individual style in carrying and positioning the pack. This just takes time, practice, and attention to detail. Once you've done your homework, there is nothing that substitutes for attentive experience.

Edited by GlacierRambler on 08/02/2013 16:56:47 MDT.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Hips and Shoulders on 08/03/2013 11:25:41 MDT Print View

> It isn't the back wrap per se - more like what it indicates...

Excellent, lucid explanation. Now I'm beginning to understand the emphasis on "Does it work for you?" because the amount an individual wants to carry on hips relative to shoulders is an individual variable. For example, my hiking partner for an upcoming trek just hates weight on his hips! He has been looking for a new pack that will throw most of the weight to his shoulders. I now understand that indicates he should by all means avoid an overly-large pack, and he might appreciate a bit more shoulder wrap than normal. Whereas the majority of hikers likely want the weight mostly on the hips (I know this is doctrine).

You also allude to one other function of load lifters (...there seem to be so many explanations and disagreements about what the lifters are for and what they do...perhaps their function varies radically with pack design and fit...) that meshes with something else I was reading here on BPL. That author mentioned that load lifters are often used as pack size adjustment features on otherwise non-adjustable packs. In other words, that LL allow a particular "non-adj" pack to be worn by a larger range of sizes. Add that duty to the others assigned to LLs: pulling the weight close; throwing more of the weight to the frame and thus to the hips; pulling the back of the shoulder strap off the shoulder; being mere marketing devices that make the pack look more technical, etc...

Very interesting topic, interesting in the theoretical realm, not just the applied. I do have an "application" footnote however. Completed my second practice hike with the pack, paying special attention to weight on hips and shoulders. At the end of the hike, when tired, I'm thinking: "I'd like to get this weight off my feet." I'm not thinking: "I'd like to get this weight off my shoulders" or "off my hips." I really can't tell, so far, that the pack is too heavy on any particular part of my body EXCEPT the balls of my feet; the pack seems to be an "all over weight." It also seems easily adjustable, where I'm able to mostly unweight the shoulders (loosen shoulder straps and snug the LLs) or mostly unweight the hips (tighten shoulder straps, loosen hip belt) with ease--yet seldom do I feel a "need" to shift the weight. I take this as a good sign. If anything, I think it is slightly easier to unweight the shoulders than to unweight the hips.

I also tried an experiment: I cut down my CCF sit pad to the dimension that would fit into the frame pocket and added it, along with the frame. It seemed the fit of the pack suffered somewhat, not conforming to the curves of my back as well. I noticed more air cooling the small of my back, possibly indicating a gap, or maybe indicating a windier day. Too rigid, I wonder. Needs more experimentation.

Edited by Bolster on 08/03/2013 11:30:09 MDT.

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Hips and Shoulders on 08/03/2013 20:00:05 MDT Print View

" Completed my second practice hike with the pack, paying special attention to weight on hips and shoulders. At the end of the hike, when tired, I'm thinking: "I'd like to get this weight off my feet."

Solution - tie about 100 helium balloons to your pack frame.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis) - MLife
Pack Fit Redux on 08/07/2013 10:28:52 MDT Print View

Hello. I received my size large Ohm 2.0 (torso size of 21" – 24", compared to the medium of 18" – 21"). The hip belt is adjusted in the highest position, providing the shortest torso length on this pack.

I hastily packed the bag late last night for the photo. I see that my load lifters are overtightened. The pack isn't quite as full as the previous photos (I was a bit rushed).

Anyway, I would love feedback on fit. It seems like the curve of the straps down the back is similar to the previous photo, which makes sense since I use the max adjustment on the medium and the minimum adjustment on the large. My question is whether I should keep the large and return the medium and continue to refine the fit of the large.

Edit: Thanks Nick!



Ohm 2.0 pack fit

Edited by passanis on 08/07/2013 11:56:57 MDT.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Pack Fit Redux on 08/07/2013 11:30:12 MDT Print View

Open the picture in a photo editor. If it is oriented correctly in the editor, rotate it 180 degrees twice, then save it. Now upload it.

michael levi
(M.L) - F

Locale: W-Never Eat Soggy (W)affles
re on 08/07/2013 11:39:22 MDT Print View

Why are you adjusting the torso shorter?

Put it at average and take another picture, the shoulder straps should connect to the top of your shoulders.

But you have load lifters so it doesnt really matter at all.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Changing my mind on 08/22/2013 11:20:56 MDT Print View

After some more thinking and experimenting on my last couple of trips, I have changed my mind on the whole wrap question.

I think it's much better to have little to no shoulder strap wrap. After playing with my pack a bit, I've found that this really does carry better and keep my shoulders from being fatigued. A little wrap was never too bad for me, but none feels a lot better at the end of the day.

So---mea culpa. Nick's pictures are spot on for how I'm fitting my pack these days.

EDIT:

Sean, this may be too late for you, but does that help? I was out when you posted the second pic, so I missed it.

Edited by GlacierRambler on 08/22/2013 11:24:45 MDT.

Nathan Coleman
(RockChucker30) - M
Load Lifter Function on 08/22/2013 14:22:53 MDT Print View

There are a lot of things going on here and everyone is speaking the same language, but maybe different dialects.

I've studied pack design for a long time, and have been fortunate to own a lot of different high end packs before starting my own company, Paradox Packs.

Comfortable load carriage is a function of the hipbelt, frame rigidity, frame shape, and frame height. I don't think you can talk about one piece of the system without the others, because they are an interdependent system.

On the hipbelt I believe that to be comfortable at loads of 10-60 lbs many different designs work well, and lumbar pad designs work efficiently at these loads because they are designed to effectively give very good contact on the lumbar and the fronts of the two iliac crests.

However, at heavy weights the lumbar pad belt is a failed design in my experience because it deforms and slips, lowering the frame height relative to your torso, and in some cases slipping so much it interferes with free movement of the legs.

I believe that a properly executed full wrap belt is much superior at heavy loads, and equal at light loads.

Moving on to frame rigidity, the level of stiffness in the frame required to support the load increases with the weight and awkwardness of the load. So, you can get by with a frameless pack for light loads, but for anything over 15-30 lbs you need some support, and for heavy loads you need a very stiff and strong frame.

Frame height is more important than load lifters, as load lifter function is simply a product of frame height.

The photos Nick posted illustrate this perfectly. His packs have no load lifters, BUT the frame is slightly above his shoulder level, thus the shoulder straps are simply snugging the pack up to his back instead of supporting the load with his shoulders. This type of system is fine for medium loads.

My preference is to have a frame that is 2-4 inches taller than shoulder level for most uses, a frameless pack for daypack use, and a tall frame for heavy loads. I prefer to have load lifter straps.

Here is why:

- Shoulder straps serve three main purposes in my opinion:
1. Provide handles for shouldering the pack, and support the pack while you adjust the hipbelt and get it tight.
2. Snug the pack to your back while you're wearing it.
3. At heavy loads, I like to alternate carrying more weight with my shoulders, and carrying less weight with my shoulders.

A pack with a properly fitted shoulder harness with a frame above shoulder height and load lifters will accomplish those functions at all load ranges, IF you have proper frame rigidity for the load, frame height for the load, and a hipbelt that does not slip.

Edited by RockChucker30 on 08/22/2013 14:26:17 MDT.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
OP Checking In on 08/23/2013 21:12:23 MDT Print View

OP checking in. Just back from a 3-day at Pt. Reyes in California, 22 lb in the GG Crown shown in the photos of this thread.

The GG Crown functioned nearly flawlessly for me. I was not able to detect misfit. I could throw weight to hips or shoulders with a little adjustment here and there. Never got a hotspot or even soreness. The pack sort of melted away into unawareness...it didn't catch my attention much, and didn't require many adjustments.

My hiking partner had a similar sized Osprey pack that weighed twice as much (4 lbs) as my GG Crown. We tried each others' packs. THe Osprey held the pack off the back quite aways, and allowed very good circulation at the cost of pulling backwards. It also let you know you were working against the pack frame. Whereas the GG Crown was more like wearing a piece of clothing. It moved with you, and was also hotter due to less circulation. The Osprey had wider, more comfortable shoulder straps, but I can't say the GG Crown straps caused any discomfort, they just weren't quite as comfortable as the wider Osprey's.

Regards the load lifters, I didn't like to walk without them snugged in. The pack just felt better, tighter, more responsive with the LLs snugged up.

So, fit-wise, I've no complaints so far. Let's see what a week's trip and heavier pack will do.

Fit aside, the pack acquitted itself very well. Just no complaints. Not even any nitpicks yet, and I'm a nitpicker.

Well, OK, one: It got tiresome unrolling and re-rolling the top sleeve every time I needed into the pack. Cost of a light pack I suppose.

Edited by Bolster on 08/23/2013 21:18:43 MDT.