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Lightweight dry bag for storing the clothes inside…

Rating: rated 3 of 5 stars
Source: received it as a personal gift

Summary

Lightweight dry bag for storing the clothes inside the backpack. The fabric is neither too lightweight nor excessively strong. We’ve been using three of these bags for almost six years until we spotted massive delamination of PU coating inside and failures of welded seam.

Pros

  • Reinforced base
  • Good weight-to-strength ratio

Cons

  • Limited lifespan due to delamination and seam failure
  • Not suitable for squeezing in tight space nor for storage of sleeping bags


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In 2012 we received three of these bags (in 12L size) as a gift from our friend. Prior to that we hadn't used the dry bags in our trips, protecting our gear by external raincovers and regular consumer plastic bags as liners. After a few days in a trip plastic bags tend to fail, so we packed the sensible clothing and sleeping bags to double bags, replacing them as necessary. I also owned a bunch of heavy duty kayaking dry bags, but they were extremely large and heavy for bicycling.

The Ortlieb dry bags are made of lightweight PU-coated fabric called PS10 with the bottom made of stronger PS21 fabric. These fabrics resemble the general properties of 70D PU-coated nylon, but have a noticeable “plastic” feel and rigidness. There is no traditional seam, the parts of the bag are welded together (which is typical for Ortlieb). The weight of 12L bag is about 70 grams. I like the strength and weight combination of this fabric, it’s neither extremely lightweight nor excessively heavy and strong.

The roll closure of this bag is usual, but without a D-clip for securing it outside the backpack. Actually the lightweight dry bags in this class are not designed for carrying outside the backpack, so securing them to your gear is not really necessary. Also the lightweight bags are not made for submerging, and you don’t want them attached outside the kayak.

Initially we wanted to use these dry bags for protecting our old synthetic sleeping bags. Though we didn’t succeed: the sleeping bags appeared a bit larger than 12 liters, and also we couldn’t compress them inside the dry bags. A year later we purchased smaller down sleeping bags (Deuter Trek Lite 250) with matching Sea to Summit eVent compression bags made specifically for this use case.

So we used the Ortlieb bags for carrying the spare clothing. We always use the rain covers in foul weather, so internals of our bicycle bags are never soaking wet. On the other hand, securing the roll closure in a dry bag makes squeezing it into the limited space difficult. So we prefered to fully close the dry bags only in some occasions with considerable rain showers. (In some Ortlieb dry bag models there is a deflation valve for squeezing them in tight space, but not in ours.) Our gear remained completely dry in Ortlieb bags.

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We’ve been quite happy with our bags for almost six years, until we noticed the delamination of PU coating inside. The inner side of fabric became sticky and PU layer started coming off in huge patches. Also the welded seams failed in numerous places.

After noticing the delamination and failed seams, we became aware that our Ortlieb Dry Bags are not dependable anymore, so we replaced them to three Sea to Summit Lightweight Dry Sacks in 13L size. They are almost the same as our old Ortlieb bags, so we expect a good service from them. I’ve been using the eVent compression bags from the same brand for 5 years with success, so I decided to keep my allegiance to Sea to Summit.

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Failed seam

To my opinion, the Ortlieb’s six years of active service life is still quite good for lightweight nylon fabric, isn’t it? We decided to keep them as regular liners for storing the gear in dry weather trips.

Alicia MacLeay TRAILSPACE STAFF

Another great and useful review, Vladimir. Thnanks!


5 months ago

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