Frameless pack (2 Viewers)

Tanner

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Feb 14, 2010
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Oxford, United States
so i got this frameless pack given to me. just wondering if any of you have traveled with a pack with no frame. i kinda like the idea because its small. fits my sleeping bag, jacket and has all the little extra pockets all inside. plus its waterproof. Anyways i want to travel light this summer and figure that keeping it small will help me not carry around a bunch of useless shit. So yeah just wondering if even just having roughly around 20 lbs is going to give me a bunch of issues traveling as far as my back and shoulders n such. maybe one of you have tried this route?
 
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soundpath

Pilgrim
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Feb 11, 2010
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planet x
You might want to load it up and walk around for a few hours & see how it feels. The thing is, without a frame, there is no structure to stabilize the load, so your back muscles have to be working harder to support the weight. Frames also take advantage of body mechanics to help distribute the weight. This is why hip belts are important. Without a frame and hip belt, the entire weight of the pack will be sitting on your shoulders and spine. If you are large and strong, this might not be an issue, so it just depends on the person.

One thing you could do is fold up a sleeping mat or something rigid and put that inside, next to your back, to give the pack some rigidity.
 

Dameon

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I used a little school backpack once because my real backpack wound up in a fire while I was blackout drunk. It worked, for the summer anyway. I wouldn't do it long-term...For winter gear, you're putting a lot of weight on your shoulders. There's no real reason to use a frameless pack...I see good hiking backpacks for cheap all the time in thrift stores. You just have to hit up a smaller, independent thrift store rather than one of the large chains. I see external frame packs a lot for about $10, although I hate external frame packs. Internal frame packs are rarer, but you have all of summer to keep an eye out.
 

stove

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on the road
I rocked a frameless pack for a few years hiking etc. It's the whole light-weight trade off: Less gear, less weight, less wear n tear. Personally I wouldn't do it again unless I was going RIDDICULOUSLY light, like the clothes on my back and a schoolbag for my sleeping bag, food, stove, tarp, trap, and not much else.

Personally unless you're a serious minimalist, I wouldn't suggest it. You might have light stuff now, but on the road, you'll collect stuff- it happens.
 

Puckett

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my pack is frameless but still has the waist strap, its not bad. my old pack was my dads in the 70s and it was a giant frame with one big pocket and a space for my sleeping bag below it and it kinda sucked. it was also 40lbs+ with all my gear. i didnt have that much in it but i do like to carry books with me to read and trade.
 
H

hamikman

I deleted myself
I wouldn't go frameless. They suck if you have to seriously walk anywhere with anything over 20lbs. There's some good internal frame packs out there that do a good job for not much money. I see 2nd hand older generation ones that are just fine in thrift stores but if you got the cash bottom end new ones aren't that expensive and are pretty good for the money. In Canada there's a store called mountain equip co-op (coast to coast). Awesome place. I'm sure you have many like it in USA. They sell other brands but design a lot of thier gear and have it made offshore so its price is good and the quality is excellent - not chinese shit. I have a spirit 40 (40 litres/10gal) $69 from them and I love that pack. Fits close and tight, has features exactly how I like, good suspension..... . Doesn't hold alot but keeps me from carrying a lot which I hate. Get internal at least. Your back will thank you.
 
OP
Tanner

Tanner

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Oxford, United States
yeah it has a waist strap that helps a bit, i just took it out on some hikes doing some 9 hr slot canyons, packed it as though i was going traveling. it wasn't bad but yeah after using my frame pack for so long my shoulders arent used to having any weight on them. leaning towards just using my old Kelty with the frame. its just so damn big. thanks for the info people! Maybe i can stuff it in my pack and give it to someone on the road that lost theres due to a drunk fire accident or something. haha. good times.
 
Joined
Nov 9, 2009
Messages
6
Location
Minneapolis
Ive been frameless a few months now. Im using a skateboard backpack that has a flap that opens for a skateboard to be strapped in. It the best pack Ive ever used. I am carrying very minimal gear though. Im in Maui and you dont need shit for gear here.
 

bryanpaul

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motherlode-20acu-20100oz-jpg.51653

these "camelbak " and/or "molle" packs are GOOOD....... very expensive at surplus stores new but really worth it.......cordura fabric shit is the shit .......i've put over 10,000 miles on mine and it's ready for another round of travelin.....there's alot of similar packs like this ...... if ya see one for a good price GET IT!...lots of options fer strappin shit....just dont wash it(like carharts) makes the fabric weaker
 

cnevs

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Jul 17, 2011
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if your worried about your shoulders prepare to feel some burn realistically
 
Joined
Jun 18, 2011
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Location
Florida
I might get shit for saying this but here it goes.... I'd have to disagree about molle cordura type packs from my experience atleast. Got myself the 3 day assault pack, seemed way stronger than any backpack I head. It was awsome cause you could slip out the frame from the inside which was basicly an aluminum sheet. It was very expensive but I saw it as an investment, and I got talked into it, being the modern military version of the ALICE so I've heard. It broke right away, after being on the road for two weeks, of hitch hiking, not train hopping, nothing involving me throwing my pack around or anything ya know, and it broke right away, ripping at all of the seams.And I've stitched it up various times to try tto salvage but any time I put more than a couple of things in there and walk some miles it starts all over again. Damn shame. I don't know, theory of mine was that it mmust of been sitting in some deposit ffor way too long, humidity must of gotten in it, and somehow, rotted the seams, since I have no other explanation.

As far as frame-less packs goes. As much as I dislike carrying extra weight off the rame it's a life saver if you're going to walk a couple of miles or more really with a typical amount of weight. I mean, if you're just doing the carrying a sleeping bag and a tarp I'm sure you can get away with it but usually we end up carrying more than that soo. Anyways. Happy trails.
 

Sen

Pilgrim
Joined
Jul 27, 2011
Messages
71
I have a small frameless pack I use for backpacking, but I think I qualify as a "serious minimalist" :) I've done plenty of long trips with it, and it's about half the size of a school backpack, and maybe 10-15 lbs of gear, tops. It's the way to go, I think.

Realistically, you'd probably want a pack with a frame if you're carrying more than 20 lbs (as someone mentioned above). The extra couple pounds in the frame goes a long way. I don't mind the weight, I just hate bulky packs & things hanging off the sides. The frame and hip belt is a lifesaver, though.

My advice: Pack it all up, give it a shot, and see what you think. In the end, only you can make that determination.
 

Linda/Ziggy

Pilgrim
Joined
Apr 6, 2009
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Location
Near Ukiah California.
I had a big internal frame pack that I took the inner frame out of.
Used that for a good few years.
But I HAD to have REALLY good support around the waist to take the
weight of the pack.
I'm back to an origianl 70's frame pack (Kelty) love it / hate it.
Have cut the frame down already, will probably cut even more off the
frame and move the pack around.
I always add extra padding to my shoulder straps.
You can use foam or the old straps off a pack and then
wrap a shit load of duct/gaffa tape around that.
Works a treat.
Seriously if it's tooooo heavy you don;t need what is in the pack,
unless it is winter or your going for a survival trek in to the wilderness.
 
Joined
Jun 18, 2011
Messages
9
Location
Florida
That's awesome Sen, and kind of zen as welll, with the whole minimalism.

Even with a minimal of gear such as sleeping bag, tarp, space blanket, and a fleece blanket which together shouldn't weigh you more than 10 pounds you're pretty good even in most winter conditions. I originally use to have a 70 lt internal frame pack, now I've settled into my medium ALICE pack with frame, which I usually use without frame. Plus, I think anything that looks less like a typical backpacking pack the better *paranoia perhaps*. Everyone has their own needs though, plus, it's a great learning experience.
 

Sen

Pilgrim
Joined
Jul 27, 2011
Messages
71
I lied, it's almost the size of a school backpack:
http://www.maxpedition.com/store/pc/FALCON-II-BACKPACK-12p110.htm
The picture is a bit misleading, as the pack is only around 8-9" wide.

My other favorite is an Eastern Mountain Sports "Cannon" daypack. Apparently, they don't sell it anymore, and there aren't even any pictures on Google. It's more like an XXL fanny pack with backpack straps, and really not suited for more than a day or two.
 
Joined
Jun 18, 2011
Messages
9
Location
Florida
Sen, hats off to you brotha. You definitely havve the art of minimalism down. That even beats out the Sage Vagabond with his 30 lt pack, and I thought that was small. You totally blend in with something that small. I get this feeling that the smaller the pack the less you get hassled by cops, should test out that theory sometime. Good going.
 

Sen

Pilgrim
Joined
Jul 27, 2011
Messages
71
I'd love to get it into a "messenger bag" (It's a satchel!)... then you'd REALLY blend in. :D Too bad they're uncomfortable as hell.
 

Sen

Pilgrim
Joined
Jul 27, 2011
Messages
71
Oh, hey - check out Maxpedition and Blackhawk. Blackhawk is fairly pricey, but they make good stuff. I believe there's also an unconditional lifetime guarantee on their stuff. It's not so much the material the packs are made of, but the quality of the stitching, as it seems you've found out. There's lots of stuff out there that has hi-tech bullet/flame/tornado/zombie-proof fabric, but with shit for stitches. Hope you find a good pack!
 

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