Tweaking Terraplane LTW

6:52 p.m. on March 8, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

I have a new terraplane ltw, and it fit great in the store with probably 50-60 lbs. I have it loaded with 75+ now (tons o' water) and the fit is decidedly worse. Particularly, it feels like the pack is slipping a little at the hipbelt, and thus slipping down my back. Anyone have any adjustment hints?

Thanks

1:13 p.m. on March 9, 2002 (EST)
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Quote:


I have a new terraplane ltw, and it fit great in the store with probably 50-60 lbs. I have it loaded with 75+ now (tons o' water) and the fit is decidedly worse.

Yeah, remove 15-25+ pounds. I know that's 75 pounds of water with the idea of checking how it carries with a really big load. But how often do you really carry that much weight? And if you do, then why? And, also, why did you get the LTW instead of the regular or the OK (not sure the OK is available anymore)?

There really is no way 75+ pounds is going to feel comfortable. But you can reduce the discomfort by going through the same procedures the shop showed you (or should have showed you) when you got it fitted. The hip belt can be adjusted somewhat in height positioning with both the velcro (tends to slip with really heavy loads, but that's the way hook and loop fasteners are). Check the straps on the hip belt. Once you get the pack on, fasten the waist belt at the correct position on your hips. Then tighten the shoulder straps (the load lifters should be loose at this point), then fasten the sternum strap (is your sternum strap in the correct position?) The sternum strap should not be tight, but just enough to keep the shoulder straps from moving sideways (you don't want to compress your chest and restrict breathing). Do a bit of hinching and adjust the waist and shoulder straps. After that's adjusted, then tighten the load lifters.

Still, 75+ pounds??? I'm not sure I have ever had that much in the pack itself, except when I was headed up Denali or some other peak requiring a minimum of a couple weeks of food, winter gear, plus full climbing gear. I've done 200 mile hikes with a lot less than that.

6:08 p.m. on March 9, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Anyone have any adjustment hints?

Quote:

Thanks

I think your carrying more weight than the pack suspension was designed for. The only thing you can do is tighten the belt even more, but that probably won't make it feel better. There's no way a strip of velcro behind the hipbelt will support that kind of load, especially since the back of the hipbelts in most internal frame packs won't fully wrap around the iliac crest and will gap and hang like a tumpline off the front of the hipbones. Only a full wrap belt like McHale's will work properly with very heavy loads because it was designed to support loads like this.

6:16 p.m. on March 9, 2002 (EST)
(Guest)

Quote:

Quote:


I have a new terraplane ltw, and it fit great in the store with probably 50-60 lbs. I have it loaded with 75+ now (tons o' water) and the fit is decidedly worse.

Yeah, remove 15-25+ pounds. I know that's 75 pounds of water with the idea of checking how it carries with a really big load. But how often do you really carry that much weight? And if you do, then why? And, also, why did you get the LTW instead of the regular or the OK (not sure the OK is available anymore)?

There really is no way 75+ pounds is going to feel comfortable. But you can reduce the discomfort by going through the same procedures the shop showed you (or should have showed you) when you got it fitted. The hip belt can be adjusted somewhat in height positioning with both the velcro (tends to slip with really heavy loads, but that's the way hook and loop fasteners are). Check the straps on the hip belt. Once you get the pack on, fasten the waist belt at the correct position on your hips. Then tighten the shoulder straps (the load lifters should be loose at this point), then fasten the sternum strap (is your sternum strap in the correct position?) The sternum strap should not be tight, but just enough to keep the shoulder straps from moving sideways (you don't want to compress your chest and restrict breathing). Do a bit of hinching and adjust the waist and shoulder straps. After that's adjusted, then tighten the load lifters.

Still, 75+ pounds??? I'm not sure I have ever had that much in the pack itself, except when I was headed up Denali or some other peak requiring a minimum of a couple weeks of food, winter gear, plus full climbing gear. I've done 200 mile hikes with a lot less than that.

Yeah, most of its water...I am heading to GMNP in Texas, and water availability is sketchy at best...I do have a few luxury items I could ditch like an etrex, travelite bino's and a couple of field guides. This would amount to a couple lbs weight loss at best. I have done all the standard adjustments, to no avail. I guess I was hoping for some kind of "top secret pack adjustment". I also read, after I bought my pack of course, that the terraplanes don't seem to hold up to heavy weight, but are great in the 5o lb. range. Oh well. I walked around with the terraplane loaded up to 75 for about an hour, and that thing really hunches you over, but then I am used to externals.

12:40 p.m. on March 11, 2002 (EST)
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.....

Quote:

Yeah, most of its water...I am heading to GMNP in Texas, and water availability is sketchy at best...I do have a few luxury items I could ditch like an etrex, travelite bino's and a couple of field guides. This would amount to a couple lbs weight loss at best. I have done all the standard adjustments, to no avail. I guess I was hoping for some kind of "top secret pack adjustment". I also read, after I bought my pack of course, that the terraplanes don't seem to hold up to heavy weight, but are great in the 5o lb. range.

You are correct that for really heavy loads, externals are superior to internals. This assumes that you have the weight properly distributed in both, of course. If I am headed for a passably good trail and carrying a big load (as I will be this summer, carrying in resupply by myself for a group of friends doing the JMT), I use my Kelty Sherpa. However, whoever told you the Terraplane doesn't hold up to heavy weight is quite wrong. I have carried upwards of 80 pounds in mine, most of which was climbing gear (couple ropes, lots of hardwear, plus a couple weeks food). I didn't have to "really hunch over." You may need to re-think how you distribute the weight. Look at the Dana website for their suggestions. Generally, with any pack, you want the heaviest weight close to your back and middle to high in the pack. This changes for skiing, where the heavy weight goes low to lower your c.g., or when you have to do technical climbing with the pack on (heaviest weight toward the lower middle), both cases keeping the heavy stuff close to your back. If you are on reasonable trails, take a clue from the hut wardens in the Presidentials and put the heaviest stuff at the very top of your pack (this unbalances you for skiing or technical climbing, but keeps you more upright when walking on trails.

I suspect when you loaded the pack with water, you did what I do on training hikes - filled a bunch of gallon jugs and shoved them in the pack. If so, you almost certainly end up with the c.g. of the pack well away from your back, which means you have to hunch over to get your combined c.g. over your feet. I get around this on training hikes by using my Sherpa and taking advantage of its being external frame and having straps that I can force the jugs to fit against the frame. The Terraplane, like most packs intended for technical climbing, and most internal packs generally, is pretty narrow (to let your arms swing freely fore and aft). This means that the only way you can get enough water jugs in to add up to 75 pounds is to end up with them extending way out back. You might try one of the plastic jerry-can style containers, which are a lot flatter, but probably are too wide for the Terraplane or other internal frame packs. The 5 or 10 gallon gas cans are too fat and will extend out too far. Or try sand bags that you distribute properly.

In any case, getting a proper weight distribution with a heavy load is hard with internals from any manufacturer.

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