Here is a shot at playing with lighter and more high tech materials to make a larger volume bag that weighs less than the weight of the 20L climbing pack while being almost double the volume. Thanks to Justin03 for the site for the body fabrics. Packs with frames that are made from Dyneema run over $200 and well into $400, this is an attempt to make a pack that comes in well under $50 and is still simple to make (took me under 8 hours).
Step 1: Pattern and Materials
Here are the layouts for the materials, if I did it again, I would use black Dyneema and Olive yellow Hex 70 as to have more material to play with for other projects, and a better look. The blue Dyneema is more light in color than I care for. The orange Hyper D would also look really good with the black!
Materials from http://ripstopbytheroll.com/ :
- Gutermann MARA 70 thread - $3.60
- 210D Dyneema X Gridstop - $13 (1/2 yrd)
-HyperD 300 - $4.65 (1/2 yrd)
- 2.2 oz HEX70 XL ripstop nylon - $8.50 (1 yard, you will have half a yard left for other projects)
Materials from http://www.questoutfitters.com/ :
- 5" of foam 3/8 mini cell foam - $2.75
- Prima loc toggle for 1/8" cord - 25 cents
- 2, 1" Heavy duty ladder locs - 90 cents
- 2, 1" Double adjust slide release buckles - $1.80
- 3/4" Latch cam Slide Release - 95 cents ( can substitute for an organic climbing crash pad buckle ( http://www.organicclimbing.com/collections/extras/products/metal-buckles )
-1 yrd of 1/8" draw cord - 27 cents (can also use it for lashing of gear)
- 2 Sternum slider- Duel - 92 cents.
- 2 yards of 3/4" medium wt webbing - $2.40
- 7 yards of 1" medium wt webbing - $5.53 (could prob go with 6, but better safe)
- 1 -3/8" grommet - 22 cents
- 5 yards of 1" grosgrain ribbon - $2.50
Other materials: 1/8" 6160 T6 aluminum rod for the frame
Step 2: Cutting and Layout
Cut out and layout everything, it is helpful to mark centers and quadrants on the material to help with line up the bottom and the other points (the thinner lines on the layout that are inside of the rectangles are lineup points, DO NOT CUT THEM, THERE IS NO SNIPPING OF ANY KIND IN THIS PATTERN, EVEN ON BENDS AND AROUND CORNERS).
After you cut the foam, it helps to cut a wedge where it is sewn in, like at the point of the shoulder strap where it meets the bag, the hip strap where it meets the back and the back pad where it meets the bottom.
Step 3: Shoulders and Hips
Cut and melt the cut ends of 1" webbing: two pieces of webbing at 20", two pieces at 24", two pieces at 10" and two peices of webbing at 18".
Tack the two 20" pieces of webbing on the shoulder strap tops with 1" hanging over and the center of the webbing on the center of the end of the fabric.
Tack the two 22" pieces of webbing into the seam of the hip strap on the small end in the center.
Fold the 10" pieces of webbing over and sew leaving aprox 1.5" unsewn at the ends. Add basically where they are in the pic. It may work better if you had them set towards the bottom, while the hardware would bump you more, it would be easier to clip too.
Lay the two uncoated sides against each other and sew the seam on the hips with a 1/2" tolerance and and the seam on the shoulder straps with a 3/8" tolerance, back stitch the ends of the seams. all seams are sewn with a 8 to 10 stitches per inch.
Bar tack over any webbing.
snip the hard corners out to reduce bulk in ends (see pic)
Turn the shoulder straps right side out by pulling the webbing hanging out the end.
Put the HD ladder locs on making sure that the webbing is pulled well to make sure the shoulder strap is fully right side out, bartack twice, once right behind the ladder loc and once about 1/4 ish away, making sure to catch the webbing underneath.
Stuff both hips and shoulders with foam, keeping the non-wedged side towards the inside of the shoulder strap and about an inch from the open ends..
If you machine can go through the foam (my home machine does), sew a line down the center of the strap stopping at the bend in the shoulder strap and roughly 2" away from the end of the hips.
slide the sternum slide on, bend the shoulder strap so the webbing has enough slack to allow the shoulder strap to bend naturally and bartack the webbing down through the foam at the point highlighted on the pattern of the shoulder strap. if your machine can't go through the foam, cut out a rectangle where the bartack goes in the foam and then sew through both layers of material and webbing.
Cut off the webbing excess webbing after point where strap meets body of bag.
Take the two pieces of 18" webbing and send them around the shoulder straps and through the sternum slides, bartack them with a little left past the bartack.
Step 4: Main Body Setup and Sewing
Fold the two squares of not-dyneema over into a triangle and then over again into another smaller triangle, tuck webbing into the second fold and sew along edge (see pic), tack it to face with webbing side touching quadrant mark (like photo but slightly closer to center).
Sew down 22" long strip of 1" webbing strip down center, cut off and melt excesss and bartack 3/4" webbing down on top of it and through dyneema.
Fold the 2 peices of 3/4" webbing that are the tool loops and stitch them down the center, leaving about an inch on either end un-sewn and tack them to the face.
Fold both the top (the pic shows it ribbon bound, you want to fold it like the bottom pad, not like the top in the pic) and the bottom pad pocket and edge stitch them down with a long and lose stitch, same for the hip strap wings.
Sew the sides to the face (10 stitches per inch, 1/2" seam tolerance, nice solid thread tension, this is true for all construction seams) , keeping the bottoms of both consistent, sew the vertical collar seams and the vertical seam of the drawstring top.
Sew the the collar and body a second time 1/8" inside of the first stitch.
Ribbon bind the body and collar, bartack any stress points, hip straps beginning and end and side of frame pocket openings.
Set up shoulder straps, carry loop and center hook point like shown in pic.
Edge stitch both bottom panels together and punch a hole in the drawstring piece, install grommet and edge stitch ( you can run the string in before or after, I did after as I did not want to sew it into the seam accidentally)
So at this point you should have 3 tubes and a cap (starting form the bottom):
The tall one with the webbing ladder on it and the back/shoulder straps/hip straps that make up the main body, it is 21" tall.
A shorter one that looks like the bigger one without any thing sewn to it, it is 8" tall
And finally, one with a grommet in it that is the top for the drawstring, it is 3-1/2" tall
Sew them together (10 stitches per inch, 1/2" tolerance, solid thread tension) keeping the 6" panel of the collar on the face of the largest tube (see pic, see lines on pattern)
*The bottom will not be square, if you pin the quadrants and align the back, you are going to get the material on the sides being a little smaller than the full bottom, this is desired, sew the seam and cut the corners on the bottom to be even with the bend in the fabric. you also may get a little pleating in the corners, this is also fine and if anything it adds material to them and makes them stronger.
Sew again, 1/8" in from the first seam.
Bartack all weight bearing points, well, all of them. I bartacked across the entire shoulder strap rig and bottom shoulder strap anchors.
Turn rightside out.
Step 5: The Frame
I am doing a 1/8" aluminum rod frame, the frame can be anything you want from an hdpe frame sheet, a peice of foam, or potentially nothing.
To do a wire frame, you want to do what you see on the second pic and then basically tape both overlapping bits together, you can also make a sleeve out of 1" webbing and slide it over both overlapping bits to bind them together, like what you see in the first pic. as long as it is smooth and does not poke the material, it is probably good.
I arched both the bottom and top bars so they did not touch my spine and put the overlapping part on the bottom.
when bending it I would recommend making it maybe an inch too long as it loses some length with the S bend and you can always turn the sides inward to relieve pressure on the material.