I’ve always thought there should be a better way to access your kit in a rucksack.
Deployment bags are great, but they don’t really perform well as a rucksack over any distance.
They’re also uncomfortable as the entrance to the bag sits on your bag with no real padding. Enter the Wisport Zipperfox 40L which has the potential to be a game changing design. Wisport has made a clamshell type rucksack! The initial thoughts are that this could be really good or really bad. So now having spent a couple of weeks with this beauty I have to say on initial testing itís really good.
Build quality is very good, stitches are straight and reinforced in the correct places. This might seem a given, but there are lots of manufacturers churning out rubbish, so it’s worth a check. The zips are heavy duty as is the Cordura material. The rucksack consists of one main compartment at 40l. Itís a decent size that can be compressed down and the waist belt can be removed. This makes it ideal for carrying on luggage when travelling further afield.
The main feature is the clamshell design; the whole bag opens up allowing easy and quick access to contents on either side at the same time. With a removable aluminium frame and a 5-year warranty, this bag is one to last. With MOLLE loops both internally and externally it has potential for a lot of added versatility. The shoulder straps and hipbelt are well positioned and padded. There’s plenty of expansion too for the larger person. Airflow around the back when carrying is quite good compared to other rucksacks of this size. Another useful feature is the Camelbak integration with hose clips on both sides of the harness. There’s a rain cover located in an underside pocket; I would have liked to see some attachment mechanism for this as I feel it could get lost easily or blown away when in use.
I have to say my initial impression is Iím sold on this. With the removable belt you can fit it through an airline luggage size test. Itís a decent weight and very comfortable for long distance carrying. The clamshell design means I can lay all the contents out at my destination in an organised fashion rather than the typical rucksack way of everything spewing on the floor. If I’ve left something at the bottom of the pack, I can easily get to it with the accessible zips. A lot of thought has been put into the design of this. While yes there may be a couple of tweaks here and there such as Velcro for excess straps and clips to secure the bottom zips but these are personal preference. The bottom zip never moved even under heavy loading; my paranoia is simply from a RAF discip shouting ìpocket today, punch tomorrow. As well as doing the bushcraft outings I used this during the Edinburgh Festival whilst out with the family. It made life so much easier being able to access the contents without digging through.
I think this is a cracking product and yet another good one from the range at Military1st.