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Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?
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Thread: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    OR/CA
    Posts
    8

    Question Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    I need some help making my decision on a pack. I'm sure all this has been covered before but I guess im just looking for some more specific answers.

    I'm in the USMC and I must say I hate the issued ILBE packs. Very few like it, theyre unfomfortable, horrible to wear with our plate carriers, and if its somewhat used you can expect the quick release shoulder straps to well, release quickly at the worst times. During my last deployment I was lucky enough to get my hands on a large ALICE, and I used the crap outta it. But we all know there is much to be desired with those.

    So I've come here to get your guys' input and reccomendation on a good pack for me. I want something that will be able to haul as much as a Large Alice, but at the same time remain small enough to use as a day pack or 3 day pack. I have been looking pretty hard at the Zulu and it looks to me that with some pouches it will be able to haul quite a bit of stuff. But I am curious as to how capable it would be in carrying some pretty heafty loads. Ive also had my eye on the ZXR but it almost looks a little to large for me. I try to keep a minimalist attitude when it comes to choosing what gear to take along, but most times i get a little carried away. I havent had an oppourtunity to handle any Kifaru gear so this is where you guys come in.

    Before I ramble on too much longer, I appreciate any input you guys' may have and I am looking forward to making my first Kifaru purchase!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    Hopefully I can help since I'm also USMC (0351) and I've been lucky enough to be able to try many packs over the years.

    I decided on the Zulu because I found I prefered the simplicity of it. It's big enough that with just the bag I can survive a few days pretty comfortably and longer a little harder, but you can also make them alot smaller with the compression straps. I use a combo of an XTL lid, an E&E, and 4 long pockets and I have yet to ever run out of space with it. I use it so much that I'm looking to get another Zulu just for the civvy side of life.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    OR/CA
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    Thanks for the input man, its just what I wanted to hear. How does it handle heavy loads? From time to time I will need to carry quite a bit of weight.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    170

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    Hi

    I'm a civilian, I'm using G1 Zulu for daily activities
    the max comfortable load that it can handle without additional pouches are between 20 - 25 kg (44 - 55 lbs)
    more than that you need a better suspension

    William

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    La Grande
    Posts
    705

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    Consider whether you will be wearing it with body armor. I had an X-ray I used as an aid bag my last deployment, and that thing was horrible to wear with body armor. I know the Zulu has a longer suspension so you may be ok, but I doubt it. Look into the Armor Grip packs as well. They cost a bit more, but they are designed for kit. Also, mystery ranch has some stuff for body armor as well.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    The Zulu has been able to handle everything I've thrown at it, so it can definitely handle some major weight. It does suck to wear with armor, but so far, EVERYTHING I've used sucks with wearing armor. I haven't tried any of the Kifaru or MR body armor gear yet, but I sure as hell would like to.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    OR/CA
    Posts
    8

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    Thanks for the Info guys, I think I've finally decided to get one. I just wish the wait time wasn't so long for one of these but I'm sure it will be well worth it!
    Last edited by Papp71; 08-10-2011 at 07:54 PM. Reason: Stupid iPhone

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    146

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    If you are ever going to put more than 50lbs in it, get the ZXR. And for that matter, since wearing it with armor is a concern, get an AG2. The AG2 is a shortened EMR, it will hold an MSS in the bottom, you can compress it down if you need to, or carry MONSTER loads if you need to. Its probably bigger than what you think you need, but from your posts it seems that armor compatibility and the ability to haul very heavy loads if need be are pretty important to you. That ain't a Zulu. IMO the Zulu is way too big of a bag for its suspension.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    San Diego
    Posts
    821

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    Quote Originally Posted by Papp71 View Post
    Thanks for the input man, its just what I wanted to hear. How does it handle heavy loads? From time to time I will need to carry quite a bit of weight.
    Hey brother,
    Not sure which direction you ended up going, but whichever it was, it'll be capable of handling heavy loads for sure. Here are some pictures of my Express (generation 1, so even less built for heavy weights) which is the Omni system like the Zulu. In these pictures, for a test, I loaded it to 110lbs. Now...this is NOT something I'd want to hump for extended periods, but that kind of weight isn't all that common for the pack itself. I think the typical weight is around 50lbs and it's fine. Also, that's without armor, which has pros and cons when it comes to carrying weight. In short, they can both do the job, but if you expect to carry 80+lbs as a normal load, I'd probably go with the ZXR. Hope that helps.


    "The Marines I have seen around the world have the cleanest bodies, the filthiest minds, the highest morale, and the lowest morals of any group of animals I have ever seen. Thank God for the United States Marine Corps." Eleanor Roosevelt, 1945

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    3,824

    Default Re: Help needed, Zulu, ZXR, Or?

    Hey Hanzo!! Been a long time brother, how are things going with you?

    Mel

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