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Backpack made from yacht sails are light and sturdy

December 22, 2011

Quasar line

Quasar line

More and more people are backpacking these days and with a huge competition for backpacks out there, one can get confused on the lightest yet sturdy ones. The larger ones can carry a whole lot of stuff, but the trade-off is it gets heavier.

The U.K.-based company, Terra Nova Equipment, will launch the Quasar series that includes three packs — 30, 45, and 55 liters in size — that employ Terra Nova’s “Ultra fabric,” a crinkly polyethylene material used in yacht sails.

Touted as “groundbreaking” because of their high strength and low weight, the Quasar packs will weigh as little as 14 ounces. While the “Ultra fabric” makes up the body of the pack, reinforcements come via a Cordura fabric in high-wear areas as well as bar-tack points stitched with Dyneema thread, a thermoplastic polyethylene strand that has a strength ratio stronger than steel.

The Quasar design is that of a basic backpacking or mountaineering “sack” — there is no frame, only a sheet of foam for support, and the packs have few bells and whistles beyond removable hip-belt pockets and a hydration sleeve. Yes, a whistle! There’s an emergency whistle integrated into the chest strap buckle.

The biggest pack in the line, the Quasar 55, has a single alloy strut to give additional support and stability under a load. It weighs 21 ounces at maximum, or less than 1.5 pounds, for something that could tote a load for three or more days outdoors.

Terra Nova’s Quasar offerings include costs between $240 and $300. They will be marketed primarily to backpackers and adventure athletes, not alpine climbers. The Quasar series will be available to purchase in February and previewed next month in Salt Lake City at the Outdoor Retailer trade show.

Source: Gear Junkie



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