Backpack Tailor

Backpack Tailor
Yesterday, I finally made the shell or body of my Windmill Backpack design, I now have one Backpack that is 20 percent finished.

I will go to Taiwan on the eleventh of September, I truly need a Backpack that is up to minimum standards for a travel Backpack.

Rangsit, Thailand
Thamasart Rangsit University Apartment Hotel
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey --- Backpack

Here is the minimal shell of the Backpack I am trying to design and make, and so far, I am very happy. I now have a backpack to use for my trip to Taiwan, Japan, and Korea.

As you can see, this backpack so far is very simple looking and I hope it remains that way as I add the other 80 percent of features and benefits. A Travel Bag needs to be smooth so it does not catch on airport luggage carousels, door handles, bus doors, people, and any other sharp object. It cannot be wider than the human body or walking becomes a problem, I am not out in the wide open outdoors, I am on planes, trains, buses, and automobiles.

The material is a 500 Denier Ripstop Spectra fabric, very durable and similar to Kevlar. The zipper pull is the Padlock type, however the end product will have YKK Hasp Zipper pulls.

This is the person who sewed up this bag, it is truly amazing how fast this bag was sown together. I would guess he spent less than two hours just making this shell. However, I had already cut all the parts, engineered them and stayed right with him while he was sewing.

This is the shell or body of the backpack, more or less this is like making a racing car, I think you need to make the body, then add all the features and benefits slowly so you can see how they will look on the actual frame.

I have learned many lessons about designing my own bag, I now know for sure what a person needs is a tailor, not a bag maker, but a tailor. The man above is not a tailor, he does not make clothing, he repairs clothing. I more or less was the tailor, I cut all the pieces and he sewed them together.

I have had zero luck with allowing any company to cut the pieces, they just are not capable of engineering a bag. Companies that make backpack, copy backpacks, they very seldom actually make a new backpack. The workers in the Backpack Factories are not skilled labor, they are people who repeatedly sew the same pieces many times per day. There are few designers of backpacks on the planet.

I now have a system for making the first sample that is working, this has taken me years to work out. In the end, to make a great backpack, I must learn everything about being the Tailor for a Backpack.

I guess I am finding another career.
“Backpack Tailor.”

One of the reason I am traveling presently to Taiwan, Korea, and Japan it so search for the perfect fabrics to use on this backpack so I can produce the first 100 finished products.

Backpack Tailor


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Lookin good Andy.

Will there be inner dividers or pockets?

A strong carry loop on the side? (More like a piece of luggage for an alternate carry method.)

I like Spectra fabric. Pretty tough stuff and yet not as heavy as cordura.


There will a couple of removable dividers, one for the bottom. The bottom is expandable, so goes down for long-term storage for people of bought too much.

Many interior pockets, yet to be installed, hard to get the proper perspective without the body of the bag.

I am thinking now about the spectra, good stuff, hard to find in many colors. It is good ripstop material, however so is nylon ripstop or cordura.

I am not fond of black bags, at least would like more choices in colors. So far I have only found Black in the spectra rip-stop fabrics.

Working on front cover now, that will allow me cover the zippers, protect them from too much pressure, create a few quick access pockets and serve as rain cover all in one.

This is a system, I use a Backpack Organizer, a long rolled up piece of cotton cloth with 10 pockets.

As I say, this bag is part of an overall travel system, there are accessories that I am going to include, that will help a person stay super organized. What this means is you can un-pack in a couple of minutes. You can pack in 10 or 2, according if you put things back where you found them. I do not, so it take me longer to pack.

Hi I like your idea of creating the ultimate backpack- but this does not look all that comfortable because: a. straps look thin and not well padded and perhaps not anatomically positioned to carry the weight of the bag most easily, it looks like the bag would be pullung down and out? b. because the bag is so long (or is this a tiny tailor?) can't imagine anything more uncomfortable then backpack knocking against the legs when walking. have you tried loading it and seeing how it feels?

Reading... read
Only 20 percent done...

I am NOT creating the ultimate backpack, I am creating the ultimate TRAVEL Backpack.

I continually realize everyone things ONLY in terms of Hiking, this is for travel, it is NOT for Hiking.

This is a shell...

By the way, I put that one photo with the bottom down below to see if anyone could see the difference between the first and the last photo. The first photo is about 11 inches shorter and it full.

Weight is critical here, the airlines only allow 20 Kilos, and the LCC allow less. As the price of fuel goes up, the cost of one kilo of baggage could be onerous to the passenger. I am trying to keep this bag to less than one kilo.

As I wrote before, this is a system, a dynamic system. Whereby one part is not going to work well without the sum of all the parts.

I do truly enjoy from a marketing perspective how people view a backpack. It is obvious, that just making a pretty looking bag would sell, hehehe, no need to make it really service the needs of a traveler.

Hi Mr. Andy,
Cool Beans! Now that is what I call a bag. The material seems to be a pretty nice balance between durability, flexibility, portability. Im big on C&C (camouflage and concealment). The square boxes pattern are nice for that. They confuse the eyes, help break up recognizable contours or features. It even seems to uniquely collapse on itself to lessen the profile. To some it may be a plain Jane, but to me thats Double Kudos.
IM not at all familiar with the material, at least not by name. From my experience dealing with outdoors, whenever exposed to the elements the farther away from natural materials and into manmade there is eventually a point of lesser returns. As you say though, this is bag that has to handle abuse from people, planes,trains, and automobiles. Im extremely curious at wear test. One thought comes to mind. During my couple of years in fareast the tailors were A#1. It was popular for US troops to provide our own american made thread. Quality of seams was believed to be dependent on that. That was many years ago though, so Im curious how that works out. Im keeping my fingers crossed on the straps and zipper. As the saying goes, a lock only keeps an honest man out. I have a feeling your security features could be something of a trademark.
Congrats and good luck Hobo.

What stops thieves.
1. A bag that does not look valuable, a good travel bag should look cheap, not beautiful.

2. A bag that does have the shape, tht looks like it carries valuable goods. For example, a high price camera bag obviously has a camera inside. A high price luggage normally has expensive items inside. Hiding in plain sight, this is the goal.

3. Layers, the more layers of material between a thief and the objects of value, the less ability for a thief to get to these objects.

4. Locking the bag up to other object, this bag will have a chain system whereby you can lock it up to a pole or other hard to move objects.

5. Less to watch, there is only one lock on the main compartment. Thieves want an opportunity, they want you to forget to zip shut one of your compartments so they can reach in and snatch items.

6. Convenience of safety, as a reverse logic example. People do not use the pacsafe because it is inconvenient. A good bag needs to be very convenient to be secured and safe.

As I understand Spectra fabric comes only in that one color. Cordura comes in many colors.


As I understand, they are not able to dye Spectra, it must remain a White color. An all Spectra Bag is completely white, on this bag,the little block squares are supposed to be the Spectra material.

I purchased this material in the USA in the hope of buying original fabrics. It was sold as Spectra, however upon further observation, I truly believe only the white lines are spectra. Ultimately, I need or must become an expert on materials to make a great Travel Pack.

Protection of the person items inside the bag is the goal. Therefore the emphasis here is on quality of materials and design for durability.

There is a built in redundancy in the whole design, for example if a zipper breaks, a person will be able to use other ways to secure and close the bag until the zipper is repaired.

I was in a Motorcycle wreck in Togo, West Africa, the top of the bag I had made was ground away because of sliding on the road surface and the zipper broke. I was able on that bag to use bungee cords to secure the bag properly. I was never able to repair because it was too far gone.

i am liking the look of this bag.. very sexy and sleek.. do you know how many litres it is?

and will you be incorporating a stash pocket at all?

cant wait till its finished!

I believe there is going to be a stash pockets.

There will many pockets, some on the inside that lock, what I would call a stash pockets. A few quick access pockets inside for passport, tickets, umbrella, pens, etc.

The difficult project now is the Guidebook and Water Bottle pockets on the outside of the bag. Trying to keep the smooth outside so it does catch on airport carousels, while adding pockets is a challenge.

45.435 Liters is the size of this main body.

NOTE, this bag assumes you will carry a frontpack.

When expanded you add another 18.5 liters to make the total.

The 18.5 is meant to be extra storage for the trip home so you do not have to pay to ship packages home, become big as a duffle bag.

There is another option to add another 20 liters of storage, still debating how to add.

Note a backpack can be longer rather easy, however when it become fat, it will not fit in many storage compartments on trains, planes and buses.

There is the heigth, and the thickness, the thinkness needs to stay under 10 inches to work as a travel bag, the Kangaroo packs have a huge problem.
Convert Cubic Inches to Liters for volume of bag

I'm telling you Andy put in a RFID tag so they can track it when stolen.

Hello Chuck, I agree

Radio Frequency Identification of a bag is good idea. However, first things first is prevention. I have a 100 percent chance of keeping all my personal possessions if I prevent the bag from needing tracked, simple, stop this and the tracking device is less needed.

hi andy,,this backapck design in wide opening backpack,but most important part is backstrap you need to secure the quality of strap must be strong,use the ballistic with p u coated for good qulty of bag.

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