In few weeks & days since it has arrived, the Element backpack turned itself in a clear fan favorite and is loved by its new owners. We're glad is has turned out this way as the Element backpack is one of the most important steps in our companys development. Mentioning sophisticated ergonomics and handy features doesn't begin to sum up this great product. So in this honest and direct 'in focus' post we'll be answering all questions we've heard on the Element backpack in die last couple of weeks. Maybe this helps you making your own decision:
¿? I'm not sure if the Element backpack might be too small/too large for me!?
☞ When it comes to storage volume, the Element backpack is similar to the backpack 2.0 or explorer+. Its updated design is the reason it looks more compact from the outside and shows a compact footprint on your back but is just as spacious on the inside so you can fit even extensive equipments. Additionally, the ergonomic back system will work great for people starting at around 160 cm in height to even over 190cm height. The weight of your equipment is efficiently transfered to your hip area. Of course, the hip belt can be removed for traveling or whenever you don't need it.
¿? I'm interested in the explorer or someone recommended it to me. Why isn't it available anymore?
☞ The explorer & explorer+ have been our first non-natural backpack models and held in high regard by their owners. So we wanted to improve on this design but within our previous partnership this could not be done. To achieve even better function, usability and features while improving on the things that were not perfect, we had to go a new way. With High-End fabrics and our new, in-house developed compagnon CarryLite Ergo System, we're ready for the future. As we needed a manufacturing partner who was able to create the elaborate Element design, we're glad to share a manufacturer with norønna, patagonia and arc'teryx. The focus on quality, craftsmanship and knowhow was just what we needed for the Element backpack. So if you like the explorer, you will love the Element backpack.
¿? How can I be sure that I'm wearing/adjusting the Element backpack in the correct way?
☞ Especially with sophisticated, ergonomic carrying systems it is crucial that the backpack is adjusted to your body perfectly. Even elaborate ergo systems will not work efficiently if it does not fit or is not properly positioned. So here's our guideline how to try on/adjust your Element backpack: Before putting on the Element backpack for the first time adjust the shoulder straps to their longest setting and put the backpack on. Now the first part that is fitting to your body is the hip fins/hip belt. Make sure the belt is placed on top of your hip bones and fits snug without sitting too tight. Without opening the hip belt, tighten the shoulder straps so they sit on your shoulders lightly. If the straps start to pull down your loose shoulders slightly as you're standing straight, the shoulder straps are too tight. Once the shoulder straps are adjusted, put the chest strap over the upper half of your chest area and adjust to a length so the shoulder straps are positioned well on your shoulders. Now your Element backpack should fit you perfectly and shift the weight of your equipment to your hips, protecting your back. Ready to pack and go.
¿? compagnon is known for leather products. Why does the Element Line not have any leather on it?
☞ We love our leather collection just as much as their owners, some of whom own theirs sind 2013 when we first started selling bags. compagnon leather is durable, natural and water repellant. But for entering the demanding alpine/outdoor/hiking segment, we wanted to up the ante. So we set on a vegan alternative that allowed us to save weight and provide exceptional protection and durability. All this and more did we find in the XPac fabric.
¿? What kind of fabric is XPac and why does it look so unusual?
☞ Our vintage-style, classic backpacks feature authentically made canvas sailcloth from Scotland. And for the Element Line we found a great alternative which is actually sailcloth too. But for the Element Line, we're using high-tech sail fabric made by the world leader in racing sail technology from Germany. Developed near Düsseldorf, Germany, the light, high-tenacity laminate called XPac is a great choice for us. XPac by itself can't be passed by water because of its laminate construction. There is no enviornmentally harmful coating needed at all. Thanks to the internal XPly structure, which you can see from the outside as X-shaped lines, the fabric is extremely strong and can take tough outdoor use without suffering. The top layer is nearly impervious to dirt and stains, most traces of outdoor use can simply be whiped off with a damp cloth. If you're now wondering why this awesome fabric is this uncommon for bags and outdoor applications, there is one simply reason: That kind of performance comes at a price. XPac is around 5-10 times more expensive that widely used fabrics. But staying true to our vision and striving for your satisfaction, this was still the right way to go for us.
¿? Will the Element Line be available in other/more colors in the future?
☞ Currently we're not considering more colors for the Element Line. The unique hightech fabric XPac is only available in a limited range of colors so offering new colors goes along with massive expense and cost. So we're sticking to our current colors with the super versatile and subtle Volcano black or the dapper and special Desert brown.
¿? Is the Element backpack waterproof and why did you include a rain cover with it?
☞ Waterproof bags are made for submerging a bag in water without any leaks. So regular bags are never waterproof. But the Element Line with its XPac fabric is very water resistant and the YKK Aquaguard zippers are made to withstand most kinds of downpour. The cover that is included with the Element backpack and Element sling 15 should be used for extra security in cases of heavy rain lasting for many hours and also while using the bag in dirty and mudding surroundings. This way your Element stays clean. As you get mud on the cover you can easily clean it off in a shower or using a pressure cleaner for a few seconds. So its always a great thing that our Elements have a small floor pocket with a cover inside.
¿? At the end of the rolltop daypack there is a strong velcro flap. Can I get around the noise when opening it?
☞ Of course you can. Neatly folding the end of the rolltop once or twice would be enough to close the daypack properly but we wanted to offer the extra security of another barrier. But we also included a silencer option for it. Once its open you can fold it down and lock it there so you can always use the daypack without making any noise at all.
¿? Is there some kind of partition between the daypack and the main storage underneath?
☞ With any Element Line bag you can decide to use both segments separately or open the zippered flap to create one large compartment for massive gear or reach into the storage section from the top. The dividing flap can effectively isolate a damp rain jacket from your equipment but it is not sealed for protection against leaking drinking bottles or similar. That's why there are drinking bottle holders on both exterior sides of the Element backpack.
Do you have another question about the Element backpack that we did not answer yet? Simply send us an email. We'll get in touch and help you out. If you have questions about the Element Sling 11 or Sling 15, check out our 'In Focus' blog posts for these models. Best regards and enjoy your compagnon Element backpack!