View Full Version : Why did you buy Kifaru?

Vince Scales
02-14-2006, 06:49 PM
I haven't seen a thread on this yet, so I figured it would be a kind of good one to make.


That, in a terribly laughter blurred picture, is why I purchased my Marauder. I had an excellent time at the Kifaru "party" over the SHOT Show weekend because the people of Kifaru were just too damn awesome.

Any cool stories about what brought you guys here?

02-14-2006, 07:28 PM
Some years ago I found out about a bag called a Mountainsmith DAY pack, which then progressed to the Mountainsmith BUGABOO pack which then progressed to a black FROSTFIRE pack....

what I liked about the mountainsmith packs was their lack of 'pretentiousness' in their suspensions. SOLID design that did not skirt around wearability with plastic reinforcments or wrap braces - it was simply point, beefy shoulder pads that focused borne weight where it should have been borne etc - then there were the DELTA straps on the waist belt assembly - somewhat a D'OH creation, but relatively surprising on how much of an effect it has on distributing weight through the hipbelt assmblies.

But then the concept of modularity came into play - I dug how I could strap up my DAY pack to either the Bugaboo or the frostfire and do my thing -

So when Kifaru came out back in the 2001/2 time frame, I knew what to expect and had no compunction to dropping large coin on packs that I KNEW had a reasonable design lineage.

02-14-2006, 07:30 PM
i knew mel from another board back in 2002. he mentioned that he'd be showing kifaru's stuff at a gun show that wasn't too far from me, so i went. patrick was there as well. the moment i introduced myself, they were both warm and friendly, and very enthusiastic about their products. mel showed me the features of the EMR and i was extremely impressed with all the thought that went into the design, the quality, and attention to detail. his once-neat display table was a mess after he'd shown me everything. at that time, the EMR and scout were the only packs offered. the EMR was larger than i needed and the scout was smaller. i said to mel "if you build an assault-sized pack, i'll buy the first one". a few months later, they introduced the marauder, and i got one of the first ones off the line.

Nathan C
02-14-2006, 07:55 PM
Cause ALICE rucks suck, and these will take my beatings without breaking or falling apart.

02-14-2006, 09:55 PM
beacuse their **** is the ****, 'nuff said

Flesh Thorn
02-15-2006, 06:22 AM
I needed some else expensive setting around in my closet gathering dust............not.

02-15-2006, 07:26 AM
When I first went looking for a pack I came across the Marauder. It had all the features that I wanted and many had great things to say about it. Unfortunately at the time I didn't have the kind of money that it took to aquire one of these fine packs so I settled. I purchased many packs that ran up to about $150 but was never happy. They never had the pockets that I wanted in the places that I wanted them. So just before Christmas this year I ended up with an excellent job and a lot of extra cash. That's when it all started. I ordered a Marauder with load of different pull-outs, pockets, pouches,a field chair and a cargo chair. I have been extremely impressed with the quality and well thought out features of this pack. It is a tad bit to big for a EDC which is what I planned on using it for but will work for those weekends out. I also travel about 1-2 times a month for work and the Marauder will be perfect for that because I refuse to check baggage. Anyway, I ordered a Scout which seems like it will be the ticket for a EDC.

I have received nothing but prompt friendly service from Kifaru and couldn't be happier. I will buy all future packs from them and plan on buying the kids a E&E for school.

02-15-2006, 07:47 AM
I'll try to fill the space between Egg's and MM's stories:

Well, I knew Mel from waay back. Back before he had a computer! He always had a passion for gear even before talking about gear was cool. We'd spend late nights with him showing me his sketch book full of really cool, innovative ideas. He had a real eye for practicality and minute detail. Mel would always be on the cutting edge with the latest info and who's who in the tactical world. It went well beyond just reading the newest gun rags. He'd be on the phone talking to factories! All of this obvious talent but no where to apply it. I KNEW things could really take off for him if he could just find an 'in'.

Fast forward about 15 years. Mel finally gets his first computer. Information hound that he is, he starts getting into tactical forums and general surfing. It's on the computer that Mel makes his first contact with Patrick. An outlet for some of that innovative talent had finally been established. The sketch book was about to take life!

That's what brought me to Kifaru: Mel's ability to fill a tactical need with Cordura and Patrick's extensive backpack lineage.

02-15-2006, 08:10 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Originally posted by Vince Scales:
That, in a terribly laughter blurred picture, is why I purchased my Marauder. </div></div>:D Uh, Vince - Mel... please don't tell me that's some new "Brokeback Marauder"! /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

(Sorry guys, I couldn't resist /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif )

02-15-2006, 08:11 AM

02-15-2006, 08:23 AM
I'm just glad no one got a pic of the "reach around" /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif ! Just kidding /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif .


02-15-2006, 08:34 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Originally posted by Mel:
I'm just glad no one got a pic of the "reach around" /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif ! Just kidding /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif .

Mel </div></div>"What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas"

You dont know how happy that makes some of us! /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

02-15-2006, 08:46 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> I'm just glad no one got a pic of the "reach around" ! Just kidding .

</div></div>People told me that the customer service at Kifaru was great, but that's really going above and beyond to make your customers happy.

Nathan C
02-15-2006, 10:21 AM
How come in every one of those piggy back pictures, you see what appears to be fear or apprehension in Mel's eyes? What happened to the stone cold killer face /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

ZS Gunny
02-15-2006, 11:45 AM
Because there's a cargo-chair encroaching on his portable gene-pool area.

I checked out Kifaru after reading one of their ads in a magazine. Bored sitting in the Red Cross ready room, I logged onto their website after seeing a great looking pack.

After numerous phone calls, e-mails, owners reviews and the like, I decided this was the best pack platform on the market.

Additionally I was blown away by the customer service. Mel actually returned my phone call very late at night to talk over some minute detail of the EMR. Amanda put up with my 3-4 order changes/additions with a smile while the company president Patrick took the time to personally answer a few of my questions.

A top of the line product made in the USA with the best customer service I've seen to date made my decision rather easy.

Dan M
02-15-2006, 04:52 PM
In late 2002 I followed a link from an article by Mike Sparks about casualty evac - it was to the cargo chair. I checked out the rest of the website and I realized Mel lived only 45 minutes from my house. I went saw all the gear goodness. I was hooked. I had already had my old large ALICE modified by Tactical Tailor. But I still hated the "green tick". Very soon after the Zulu came out and I was hooked. I went to SHOT last year and had a great time with Mel, Patrick, and MM. Met quite a few other guys too.

02-15-2006, 05:43 PM
For more than 25 years I had been watching the catalogs for what seemed a blindingly obvious item: A large capacity, multi-use military rucksack, employing an efficient waistbelt and the modular concept.

I watched them all parade past, but none quite fit the bill: Lowe Expedition, LOCO, Army "Field Pack, Large", ALICE mods, all kinds of civilian stuff, MOLLE. Looked like I would hit retirement before I owned a pack I could love.

After 9/11 I began getting serious about gear again, and one day Googled something like "Lowe, LOCO, backpack, Special Forces" and the first hit somehow linked me to Kifaru.

Hmm...never heard of these guys...hey, this EMR thing looks like what I've been dreaming of...what's the catch?..hmm, Patrick Smith? I've heard of MountainSmith - a mountaineering SF guy said they were "bombproof".

I took the plunge and bought an EMR. Figured this was too good of an idea to suceed on the market - these guys wouldn't be able to sell enough to stay in business, better get mine while the getting was good!

I have since bought a bunch of other Kifaru stuff, for both military and off-duty use. I must say that my EMR and my tipi are the definitive tools of their catagories (hauling and shelter), and constitute the current highest State of the Art.

02-15-2006, 05:50 PM
Well...I've only been a member of the Kifaru family for about 47 (MEL can probably confirm that accuracy) minutes now. However, I can say that the reason I bought Kifaru was because I saw a pack that my instructor had. Really awesome pack. Never got a chance to really see it in depth, it was on an FTX in the woods and I only saw it at dusk, then the crazy old man stayed pretty much hidden in the woods for the rest of the week (a testiment to the capacity of that pack). Yeah....

I asked him what type of pack it was and he said ki---- something, I couldnt' remember it. So I googled the almighty crap out of it and came across some website with a Rhino on the front page. Did some "studying" for a couple months and been drooling at the site for over a year now and just finally caved and dipped into the rainy day fun...MMR time baby

02-15-2006, 06:32 PM
I spent over a decade humping an Alice.I never gave much thought to the ergonomics/multi-functioning of a pack.I only new that it was part of the mechanism that was essential to the accomplishment of the mission.
Like Chucker Mel and I go back a very,very long time.Mel has always been an innovator either with weaponry or gear,and when Mel hooked up with patrick all of the research,energy and labors paid off with a well thought out durable product.I have had the privilege of meeting Patrick not once but twice and it has been fun and educational both times.
I purchase and use Kifaru gear because it suits my needs if I have a problem,concern or question I know where to go,you only find customer service like that in a company that truly believes in there product.
I don't remember exactly what year it was but Mel bought this industrial type sewing machine and stuffed it into his place in Watsonville I was over one day and he started pulling out pieces of LBE nylon and other material and started explaining a chest rig idea he had.
I left that day thinking Mel looked alot better holding his HK than that sewing machine little did I know.

02-15-2006, 07:46 PM
To own and use the best. Simple as that.

I wish my XTL would hurry up.

02-16-2006, 06:58 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Originally posted by AbnMedOps:
I watched them all parade past, .... googled "Lowe, LOCO, backpack, Special Forces" and the first hit somehow linked me to Kifaru. </div></div>Darn near the same thing! I had a Lowe's Loco (still do) and heard/read somewhere in the Spec Op community about some strange sounding pack. Did some Internet digging and finally stumbled into the Kifaru mother-load here! /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif

02-16-2006, 07:19 AM
At first I was put off of Kifaru because I was comparing it to packs like the RAID and THE Pack. After buying a RAID, I was offered a free pack if I did Bataan for Team Kifaru. The first day I recieved my MMR, I was sold. I got rid of the RAID as soon as I could after that- for a Scout and a Zulu. I look back at some of my first posts from time to time and I can't believe I would judge solely by price. A Kifaru is like buying a BMW and getting a Aston Martin- with a supermodel inside and a trunk full of guns.

02-16-2006, 07:57 AM
An Aston Martin with a supermodel and trunk full of guns...

DD, you should consider making a career out of writing men's romance novels. That right there was as good as anything coming out of Penthouse Forum.

02-16-2006, 06:27 PM
I knew NOTHING about backpacks short of realizing that everything I came across in local outdoor sporting goods stores was garbage.

So I started doing alot of internet searching and learning everything I could....Kifaru came up many times..

I kept looking and reading about other brands but something kept making me go back to the Kifaru site....an instinct thing if you will..

Then I started reading the forum....and now I'm broke!!!!!
Thanks guys....I'm going to sue you all for ruining me!!!!!!

No seriously.....it was a combination of reading the facts, instinct, the great support if the Kifaru people (Mel and Patrick) on the board and at the shop and all the great people on this forum who really support this stuff..


Dan M
02-17-2006, 08:38 PM
Ok, so I am going through my military pics while I update the unit website and what do I find? Mel demonstrating the Kifaru "MelGunner" for my men! /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/eek.gif

Dan M
02-17-2006, 08:45 PM
Look at those happy Soldiers!

02-17-2006, 09:30 PM
In 2004 I was THIS close to buying a tiny camelback
backpack because I wanted a new small EDC bag for
daily ball &amp; chain stuff (appt. book, notebook,
cell, surefire, gps) and also for flight school
vitals (kneeboard, 2nd surefire, maps, gloves).
I figured I could make use of the tiny patch of
PALS on its front if I needed a bit more accommodation.
At the time, my main EDC was a 12x15x6 worn out
messenger bag left over from my previous existence
working in a Manhattan office.

Somehow as I was surfing for more reviews, I
stumbled onto MM’s site, and he had just posted a
review of this “E&amp;E” made by some weird named company
I’d never heard of.
Based mainly on MM's detailed review and hi-res pics,
I decided to take a chance on an E&amp;E.
I figured the worst that could happen is I get a useful
bag for my daily junk, and my dollar stays domestic.

an E&amp;E,
some pockets and
a MARAUDER later,
I’m submitting my first post on this forum.

KIFARU’s quality and USA workmanship is exemplary –
yes, you know,
yes, I also agree.

my loyalty was sealed with this:
I’ve sent sketched requests to Janice asking for a pocket
with black on the outside but tan on the inside, modify some
PALS here, and add some PALS there, etc…
And I was graciously accommodated.

Thanks for making great products domestically and
thanks for helping me out with my individual requests.

That’s why *I* buy KIFARU.

Mind's eye
02-18-2006, 11:31 AM
Was in the market for a small day pack sized bag for a while but every bag seemed to come with pissy shoulder-straps, a sponge back system and a rather crappy little waist belt that inevitebly rides around my chest.

Anyone who's loaded up a pack like this knows it carries the weight on your shoulders when it's solid but most of the time bounces around, chaffing and knocking you off balance.

Tired of this and having seen the Marauder pics of MM's site (Showing it loaded up and stable with only the waist-belt) I started sniffing around the Kif site and after a little chat with Mel ordered one up with a back-pouch.

In getting the marauder my aim was to purchase a small low-profile pack that allowed me to move fast over rough ground with a heavy load (relative to the pack size), all the time with the pack solid and stable on my back. These aspects combined to provide an excellent trail running bag (imo).

It's a bit heavier than other civi bags but due to the excellent suspension system to me at least the percieved weight was a good deal less than a comparable load in a different bag.

02-19-2006, 07:12 AM
Well, there are things that we all have found in common. Quality and customer service...and a Mel piggyback ride.

I was looking not so long ago for quality and prompt service. I got all that and more.

The feedback on this site from the experienced user is absolutly unreal. And, without alot of the pomp and snot you read on some other sites where everybody is gods-gift-to-gear.

GREAT gear, great community.

Thanks again to all.

Kevin (saving for my next "need")

02-19-2006, 09:07 AM
I was out of town yesterday and the weather got bad so I spent the night at my mom's house. She saw my E&amp;E when I brought in my stuff from my truck and her eyes kind of perked up. Now my mom has 0 interest in guns, military stuff etc, but she's been sewing probably before anyone on this board was born (or at least 99%+). She has her first sewing machine still, it is powered by operating a pedal on the bottom with your foot (and is still a pretty serious piece of equipment). I asked her to hem a pair of arcertyx hiking pants I bought and I said "I hope your machine can do it, it's kind of thick, rubbery stuff" and got a "Hmmphf! That will be no problem."

Well anyway she saw the E&amp;E she got down real close to it and "hmm-ed" and "haw-ed," and kind of peered at the stitching and I showed her how the pullouts and straps worked, but she doesn't say much sometimes. This morning when I was leaving she pointed at it and said something like "That's very nice you know."

02-19-2006, 10:00 AM
I first heard about kifaru from a friend who had a Gen1 marauder. I was looking for a bag I can use as an aid bag and not have to worry about durability issues. My first pack was the marauder that I use as my aid bag. I also have a zulu which is my favorite pack. The customer service at Kifaru is by far the best I have ever seen of any company period. Plus, how many other comapanies let you carry around their employees on your back? /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif

Daniel Gentile
02-23-2006, 05:31 AM
Why I bought (and will do so again) kifaru gear?

simple: Because it rocks!

customer service is top-notch, product quality is amazing...
and after having had almost any sort of bag by different "well known" outdoor companies who all do claim so much crap about their products I got my express... never been SO HAPPY &amp; PLEASED with any pack before.

oh guys, I'm planin' to walk an old pilgrims/travellers trail in europe soon (St. Jakobs Way) from Le Puy (france) to compstella de santiago (spain)... roughly 1100km... will take me arround a month... will do it in late spring, and my express is the pack I'm going to take along.
perfect size for this ... and a good way to test it some more /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif

02-24-2006, 12:29 PM
DiabloDawg wrote:
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> A Kifaru is like buying a BMW and getting an Aston Martin- with a supermodel inside and a trunk full of guns. </div></div>Hear! Hear! /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

But to answer the question that was asked: I first visited Kifaru.net after having seen an ad in SoF (Soldier of Fortune) magazine. The huge, bergen-like ruck (EMR), the not-so-small buttpack (Scout), the guy carrying a casualty behind his pack (Cargo chair), all the PALS that screamed modularity, if ever: all this was so intriguing and puzzling that I simply had to investigate. What I found was fascinating and -to put it bluntly- just mouth watering! /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif But to buy the stuff without having touched/ tried out/ felt/ carried/ smelled it?!? Forget it: never!

So, why was I the first kid on the block... er, sorry, the first guy in my country to buy a bloody Pointman Kifaru Military Pack, mmmh?!? /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif Well it was a combination of the infos I gleaned on the forum, the communicative enthusiam of Patrick &amp; Mel on this same forum and last but certainly not least the reviews and magnificent photos on Military Moron's website that convinced me at long last to cough the dough. ( Well not quite, the pack itself was a Christmas gift from my parents but the various pouches and accessories I paid myself. It amounted to a little bit more than the pack itself!)

Was it worth it? Definitely, but I would nonetheless encourage everybody who can somehow or other see the packs for real(at the factory, at Mel's place, at a show), to do it. You really miss something if you've ony seen the website or the catalog... /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

Daniel Gentile
02-25-2006, 01:33 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> So, why was I the first kid on the block... er, sorry, the first guy in my country to buy a bloody Pointman Kifaru Military Pack, mmmh?!? </div></div>So you were the first swiss ?? I'm third or foruth according to kifaru /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif
Damn it... somehow I wanted that first place...
/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

02-26-2006, 08:44 AM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Originally posted by Daniel Gentile:
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> So, why was I the first kid on the block... er, sorry, the first guy in my country to buy a bloody Pointman Kifaru Military Pack, mmmh?!? </div></div>So you were the first Swiss? I'm third or fourth according to Kifaru /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif
Damn it... somehow I wanted that first place...
/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif </div></div>Sorry Daniel, yes, apparently I'm the first in the land of the Switzers to have bought a Kifaru. The second one was a guy called Mike -the manager of the Pointbreak adventure store in Geneva &amp; a former NCO in the 75th Ranger regiment- who ordered a Navigator if I remember correctly. One of the owners of the store, Enzo -a combat shooting instructor of the Swiss armed forces as well as for ASAA- followed suit some times later.

But never fear, Daniel, you're probably the first Switzer to get an Express pack! /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif

Best regards from the shore of lake Geneva,

Christoph Kohring

"Liberté est Patrie!"

Pointbreak Adventure Store in Geneva (http://www.pointbreak.ch)

Chuck Taylor\'s American Small Arms Academy (http://www.chucktaylorasaa.com)

03-03-2006, 01:48 PM
Militarymoron. A pic of a marauder with 1000 rounds of .223 and no shoulder straps. I did some reading after that but he really sowed that seed well.

03-03-2006, 02:46 PM
Doing airsofting, wanting good gear I started hanging on the Lightfighter board, found people who liked Kifaru, jumped onto the website, looking around, read MM's reviews.

Just as I thought I would buy an MMR the Zulu came out. It was love at first sight. So I purchased one.Very nice customerservice.
I don't know but I'm probably the first Swede with a Zulu. /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

I use it to carry all my gear when heading out into the wood airsofting. usually carry about 25-30 Kg.

Works real good. /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

03-03-2006, 04:00 PM
Been backpacking since the mid 60s, also packing rocks and geo toys around as part of my work for about as long. As a result, I have always been interested in functional, durable gear. I first discovered Mountain Smith butt packs and dog packs in stores and found they are good. Then Kifaru turned up while browsing the net and I about went bonkers over the tipi-stove idea. They work too! Then I was looking for a new large capacity pack with external capabilities to hump instruments in awkward cases. And there was THE CHAIR. So along with the previous successes and favorable reviews, Janice and crew should be building me a CB Longhunter in the next week or so, I hope

10-17-2006, 11:57 AM
Daniel and Christoph, I'll be the next...cause I ordered a black Marauder yesterday!!!
By the way, Christoph, you know me fairly well...but Shuuut!

10-17-2006, 01:29 PM
Well, honoured jury, I would like to prove to you, beyond any reasonable doubt, that this all is Militarymorons fault!
/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/wink.gif /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

My first contact with Kifaru was via Military Morons webpaage (http://www.militarymorons.com) . It wasn't that much of a experience reading about the Zulu and all that while I still where a lowely corpral doing my national service.

I've always loved being in the forrest and hiking, but during that time I learn't the finer bits and pieces on how to carry around half your bodyweight.

Time went and I grew as a frequent visitor to mm's site and read review after review, over and over again. For a while I was into Maxpeditions gear, using thee Vulture for almost everything but I didn't really like it. I sold it on a swedish forum and got my hands on my first Kifaru, a green E&amp;E that a friend bought via an internetauction. I used it for a while, realizing that my Camelbak HAWG did the same job much better (remember it was just a civilian EDC for a young brat at College).

The need for a better pack grew stronger as I did quite a careerswitch and I started to look for a good back pack. My criteras where easy: I needed a top-loader with a 40 liter capacity (I don't like zippers for larger packs). Reading through MM's site once again, readin posts on LF, I found Kerberos on a chat and interogated him about the Zulu, and then I mailed Kifaru.

It just said Zaaaaap!!! and I where Kifarurized.
Started to use and abuse the Zulu during a workup period, trying to get it just right.

I thought I had it, but then MilitaryMoron once again proved me wrong with his Kifaru-setuppage.

I would like to thank both MilitaryMoron and Kerberos for their invaluable help with hauling all my gear the extra mile while conserving my back and body. I owe you guys!

10-17-2006, 03:49 PM
<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Originally posted by Nathan C:
Cause ALICE rucks suck, and these will take my beatings without breaking or falling apart. </div></div>You can say that again. The above quote is why I first looked at Kifaru, i think it was '02. But at the time I wanted something bombproof, and different in a smaller size so I figured I try them out. I bought a Scout and I've used it ever since. I decided to get an Alice replacement a little later so I got a Pointman. Then a Marauder, then an EMR, a TG, another Scout.... Somewhere along the way after using several models in several colors I experienced the excellent customer service I had heard about and that sealed an already done deal. I'm a customer for life.

10-18-2006, 02:10 AM
It goes much further than the great quality and engineering that goes into the Kifaru product /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

As I have mentioned before, I often have been frowned apon by many of my peers for spending too much time and energy on getting my equipment sorted out and being somewhat fussy about my field equipment. Since I am no longer in a military environment I began looking for a new "Pack System" to replace my much loved but highly modified and bastardised issued packed /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/frown.gif .

Through talking to a fellow "geardo" I was reffered to MM site (sound familiar, should put him on a retainer) and then after a couple of posts with Q &amp; A and a couple of local lads offering me a chance to check out Kifaru gear in the flesh I was sold.

It was not just the product but the comradery that goes along with the whole Kifaru Package. I feel like a member of a Team /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif and I dont have to tell many of u guys the importance of that /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/cool.gif

I still face criticism from some of my peers for the amount of $ I have spent on Kifaru gear when I could have purchased some local made gear for much less. Indeed I looked closely at some of the local gear here in Oz and I very nearly purchased a DG-6 and would have saved 2 or 3 hundred local dollars /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/shocked.gif but it was not just the money. (Although consideration was given)

I intend my ZXR to be a "rest of my life" pack that will evolve and change with me (Hopefully 10 - 20 years) Luckily in Oz I can get away with a one season pack all year long /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/cool.gif


10-18-2006, 08:10 PM
I've been into "Progressive Preparedness" for about 31 years now. I have been seeking out the best products which will perform well enough to be used weekly and daily and will last long enough to hand down to my grand kids and hopefully their kids and grand kids. There is nothing I hate more than unnecessarily disposable preparedness goods. If it is made well and will last for generations, it is worth the extra money and worth incorporating in to my preparedness.

Few products and vendors meet these standards. So far, everything I have purchased from Kifaru has met my standards. Keep up the great work and I will keep up the testing and incorporation of products.


PS; So far, I am using a Scout, ZXR, ParaPoncho, ParaHootch, ParaStove and some accessories. Well used, but they still are like new from a functional perspective.

10-18-2006, 10:43 PM
I'll bite.

I bought a kifaru because- too put it simply- I break ****. I either crack, snap, tear, puncture, or rip stuff. I just recently started backpacking (weekend trips only, nothing major) and did some reaserch on backpacking bags. Thats how I came to find Kifaru (I think it was through MilitaryMorons's site). I have a few friends that are Devil Dogs and got to check out their equipment. They had Molle packs at the time and got me thinking that it must be good stuff to survive a combat zone (Don't shoot me, this was a while back and I didn't know anything about backpacks- MOLLE packs at that. I still don't...). Then there's the whole PALS concept. Personally, I think it's a winner. The option of adding anything you want is a no-brainer. Even "civilian bags" are starting to use some type of mudular system. I know "modular" has been around for a while but some "civi" companies use an attatchment system that's a lot similar to PALS webbing...
With Kifaru's hunting and military line, this is why I chose a military pack.
On top of that, with all the good things i've heard regarding customer service, I decided to give Kifaru my business. I personally like to support business who take pride in their products. It shows with the staff at Kifaru.

So far, I own a Marauder, MMR, and 2 Claymores pockets. I need to call tomorrow for a field chair...

...and maybe an XTL lid. This is what you guys mean by addiction, huh? Damn...


10-18-2006, 11:56 PM
why did i buy kifaru...i don't know.

Just a faith to kifaru products.

2 years ago, i never heared this name - kifaru, never saw it, never touched it.
All my friend around me , no body use or know this brand.

i knew kifaru from mystery ranch forum .(it closed already)
After i surfed kifaru site, i was attracted by all prodcuts,but it's not because the packs design or material(coz i m not an expert, i am not really know what's good or not).
i just believe what Patrick and Mel said and their theory.
And in this site, i am not see the backpack only. i see all Kifaru stuffs persisted in their beleive and their effort.
the backpack is not only backpack. all are their painstaking efforts. this is what i really appreciated and the main reason i pick kifaru.(in the begining, i want buy BSDB or Mchale)

of course, and their great customer service. (pre-order service , on-order service ,and after-order service)

10-19-2006, 12:21 AM
Okay, I cannot sit idle any longer.

1) Did three long years in Alaska as an infantry medic and blew out, broke frames on, and ran out of spaece with every military pack I could get my hands or the army would issue me. If it can't survive -50 degrees F or land or survive an airborne op with 70-90 pounds of "highspeed, light weight gear" then it's no use to me.

2) I worked in a few different gear stores all through college. I sold everything from $100 recreational use bags to boy scouts and novice one weekend every 6 month types to $400 mountaineering grade packs to wilderness guides who make their living in Utah's Wasatch and Uinta ranges year round. You know the kind of guys who climb MT Rainier on their time off for fun. I was fortunate enough to become a subject matter expert on good sound design and quality versus disposable crap that would fail you when your 25 miles from the middle of nowhere and your butt is on the line.

3) At the time I bought my EMR (back when you still got the long pockets w/purchase /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif ) I was serving in a long range recon type unit on jump status (still haven't rigged that muldoon for an airborne op, tried once and had the AMC &amp; PJM no go that effort), going through college as a recreation and outdoor leadership major (go ahead and laugh, I ended up back in the infantry /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/eek.gif ) and I was a volunteer boy scout leader. I wanted a serious pack that would last me for longer than the crap I sold for cheap and that could double as my work pack too.

3) Some of the guys in my former unit where what you we call quiet professional types. Anybody who's ever been around these amazing guys knows that they have a very expert opinion on everything tactical gear-wise (based off of pretty solid experience from first hand encounters), but will tell you nothing and are hard nuts to crack until you earn their trust. Then as long as you don't ask too many dumb questions and they don't kill you they'll usually share some tips and techniques of the trade in regards to good kit versus crap.

4) After said members of my former unit engaged in an expedition in one of the most desolate places in the world they had nothing good to really say about any of their issued packs (ALICE, CFP-90, UM-21, MOLLE). So I notice this really slick looking internal frame with PALS webbng in a guys gear room and ask what's that shiny thing? My buddy responded with "oh you gotta see this ruck, it's the mother of all rucks..."

5) The rest is like a happy ending to a fairytale, my EMR/E&amp;E and I have lived happily ever after. And so the "addiction" began and that's why I'm here.

6) A lot of guys in my unit and 1 professor in college gave a ton of grief for dropping down so much cash for one pack, and then I one by one let each of them borrow it for a weekend trip or carry it for a 6-12 mile roadmarch. Never heard a bad word again about the Kifaru.

10-19-2006, 12:24 AM
7) None of the guys in my unit giving me crap about the EMR are what you'd call operators, and I'm not either, but chance are if the gear they use will hold up for them then it's worth it's weight in gold five times over.

10-19-2006, 04:18 AM
Well my mate got some Kif gear (an MMR) and after seeing his Kif I started reading the comments on these boards.
It sort of became obvious that if I was ever to buy a new pack, it would have to be Kifaru.
I got the impression that anything else would have been madness.

Why would anything else would be madness?
I think it has all been said above.

Quality, engineering, modularity and innovtive design and features, incredible comfort and ergonomics.

In other words, the eptimome and optimum avaailable packs at this point in time and space.

10-19-2006, 10:27 PM
because it's the best.

10-20-2006, 11:13 AM
Needed a new EDC bag, saw the ad in Soldier of Fortune (been reading ever since my Army Intel days way back when...), checked the website, got a TG2, chunky shoulder strap and omni belt... WOW! Totally blown away with the build quality and thought that had gone into the design.

So now I've got a Zulu w/XTL, E&amp;E, couple of long pockets, cargo chair, ParaTipi... Why did I get all these? Well, I can't beat XL5's post above.

Can't resist this piece of advice for Patrick, Mel and the rest of the Kifaru crew: "Stay on course!" Jeez, Fireball, how old am I??? /images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/laugh.gif

10-26-2006, 10:30 AM
My reason for ORIGINALLY buying Kifaru is this message board.

Before buying a pack from Kifaru, I had only tried on an empty pack years ago before I knew what I was doing (which is still up for debate). But, coming on these message boards, seeing all the die hard loyal customers was proof to me. Any company that has hundreds of it's customers constantly coming back and raving about the product must be onto something. Any company can post up one or two positive reviews. It takes someone confident in their product to give open forum to anyone and KNOW that it will end up speaking highly for their products.

I've never seen anything like this anywhere else. Some forums feature other people's products, but even on those forums, I've never seen so much positive feedback. It really says alot and made me comfortable spending the money, a decision I have never regretted.

10-30-2006, 06:53 AM
I bought Kifaru because they use what works. Most other manufacturers go through retailers, and therefore accomodate to what the retailer thinks is gimicky and cool for the upcoming season.

This weekend I went on an overnight trip with a compass class full of girls. Thirty pounds should have been the max needed load, so I rented a pack rather than using my huge EMR. My rented pack was a Lowe Alpine pack with an internal frame. Long story short, I had my 30 pounds packed away comfortably. The girls brought way too much food and gear to the meeting point, and I ended up with most of it after their complaining. I was absolutely miserable with what turned out to be an 85 pound pack.

It wasn't a weight issue that had me miserable though, it was a pack issue. My EMR feels like nothing at 85 pounds. The Lowe Alpine had a waist buckle that kept popping undone and a pre-molded and overly-padded waist belt that chewed my hips to a pinkish red color where my pelvic bone sticks out. The entire pack was simply not tested before it reached the consumer.

The guys at Kifaru will never sell a pack that simply looks like it should work. They have it out there to test it first-hand for months before we see it. When I buy a Kifaru pack, I know the big brown truck is bringing me quality.

10-31-2006, 10:53 PM
You want the best out of it, then you got to get the best to begin with. Bought a Marauder because I wanted an inside\outside modular assault pack\3-day that could be configured as a standalone field-NBC point. House a radio, the various batteries for detection and monitoring gear, filters for CAMs, detector tape, decon packets, laminated flow charts, persistency times, notes, and the like. Instead, it got thrown in with my run-around gear, and has been rolling with me through the last two tours in beautiful Iraq. Meshes beautifully with a TT MAV-2, by the way.