In early autumn, 5.11 Tactical introduced the new TRIAB 18 backpack, a small multi-compartment daypack with a flexible suspension system designed for every day use, no matter the conditions. The key distinguishing feature of the novelty, from the previously released backpacks of the company, is the possibility of transformation relative to the classic backpack. in a backpack with one diagonal strap (Go Bag).
I have been using the backpack for more than two weeks, mainly in the city. The volume of the backpack is enough to simultaneously pack a 3-liter hydraulic system, a laptop up to 15 inches with all the necessary cables and a mouse, several folders with documents, a light windbreaker and a T-shirt, a hat, gloves, brakes, not counting phones, a navigator, pens, markers and so on. Modularity and versatility of the pack allow it to be used as a small assault pack, a backpack for country trips or as an emergency pack with NAZ.
The backpack is not supplied with a belt, but allows you to use both a regular nylon belt, using two plastic fastening rings, and a platform belt, passing it through a special through hole under the elastic back. The backpack is compatible with the 5.11 VTAC Brokos Belt, but not only, I used the wide platform Battle Belt from Condor Outdoor. With a belt, the backpack fit snugly to the back, did not cause discomfort during sharp turns, fast movement, climbs or descents.
The triangular shape of the backpack, as it were, hints at its belonging to single-strap backpacks, but unlike standard backpacks with one diagonal strap, TRIAB 18 allows you to move the strap from left to right or right to left. The backpack can be worn using only one shoulder strap, also for more reliable fixation of the chest strap, it is possible to fasten one end to a special harness near the base of the opposite shoulder strap, and fasten the other end to one of the four PALS straps. The main advantage of the single strap design of the backpack is the ability to quickly access its contents on the go, without stopping, without removing the backpack from your shoulders and leaving both hands free. I rarely used this design, as I prefer more comfortable classics. Backpack 5.11 TRIAB 18 is made of nylon with a density of 1050 denier, which, in my opinion, in addition to excessive strength, significantly evades the overall weight of the backpack. All zippers in the backpack are from YKK, paracord is used instead of metal tabs, as in principle, in all other 5.11 Tactical backpacks. All plastic hardware with and without 5.11 logos is made by UTX-Duraflex. The backpack closes with a two-way circular zipper, additionally fixed with a strap from below. Only the manufacturer, for some reason, left this strap without an elastic fixing ring, the dangling free end had to be fixed with electrical tape.
The back of the backpack resembles the modification of the back of the RUSH and All Hazards Prime backpacks, divided into three zones. Basically, these zones and in contact with the body are made of mesh, an elastic foam material is inserted inside with holes for ventilation. The shoulder straps are made in the same way, mesh is used on the inside, polyurethane foam is also inserted. To transform an ordinary suspension system into a backpack with one diagonal strap, you must first unfasten both shoulder straps from the straps, then hide one of the straps in a special hole under the back and fix the remaining shoulder strap to the opposite strap.
In addition to the main compartment, the backpack has three more compartments (pockets) of different sizes with external access, two of which are zippered. Also on the outside of the backpack, in addition to several rows of PALS lines on the sides and front, there are two small, partially mesh pockets for water bottles or other contents.
One compartment is on top with a zipper with a fine fleece inside, which is great for small cameras and mobile phones, I do not recommend using it for glasses and other very fragile things, as they can suffer under the weight of the contents of a backpack or a heavy object placed on top. The second compartment is located in the front of the backpack, very deep and with Velcro inside, it can be used both for small accessories, such as gloves, a hat, notebooks, in order to have quick access to them, and short-barreled weapons, fixing it in a special holster with Velcro . And finally, the third compartment is located between the back and the main compartment, provided for the placement of a hydraulic system or armor plates.
Let’s move on to the main compartment of the backpack, which opens completely and is conditionally divided into two parts, platform and administrative. The platform part is covered with four PALS straps, two central straps of 13 sections, two outer straps of 11 sections, Velcro is sewn on the straps from the outside. Besides the fact that PALS allows you to attach any standard pouches, I used their Velcro cover to attach small mesh bags that came with the All Hazards Prime backpack. Under the straps there is a zippered pass-through compartment that can be used for document folders, magazines, notepads, small tablets, etc. There is also a special removable strap that can be used to secure the contents of the backpack or in conjunction with the shoulder straps. The administrative compartment provides many different pockets for structuring and attaching various small essentials. In addition to two small pockets closed with Velcro, four through and one through mesh pocket, under them there are two more voluminous through pockets, one closed with Velcro, the other with zippers. Also, in the administrative part, two reinforced straps are sewn, which allow you to quickly open the backpack and remove its contents with one sharp movement. This quick opening is especially effective when combined with a single-strap design with concealed carrying automatic weapons, such as AKMSU, AKS74U or more modern AK105.