Pack everything…even the kitchen sink.
I spend a lot of time searching for bags that can pack around everything I need. But, as it is with most products, you have to find that perfect combination of form and function for it to be just right. In 2017, we stumbled upon the global brand, Douchebags. Douchebags has a mission of making better journeys through smarter travel gear. Thier company was born out of necessity as founders, Truls and Jon were both avid skiers and wanted something functional to carry around their ski gear. As a result of many discussions about bulky, expensive luggage, they created the world’s lightest, length adjustable and fully compressible wheeled ski bag in the market. This was in January of 2012 and the company has continued growing ever since.
As someone who is constantly seeking out the perfect bag for any occasion, I was intrigued by this description and reached out to them to test out their product. In June, one of our writers, Amy-Lee, reviewed the Base 15L Daypack from Douchebags and found it to be durable, stylish, and worthy of carrying around daily essentials. I, however, needed something more. So, I decided to take a closer look at the Big Bastard 90L Rolling Duffle Bag.
One of the most interesting things about Douchebags is, of course, their branding. The bag’s name caught my interest, but its specs held them there. The duffle arrived in a shipping box but does not have a product box to speak of. There is an informational tag on the handle that describes the product and its uses. Deemed a ‘packhorse’ by Douchebags’ product description, the duffle has a capacity of 90L (approx. 24 gallons). This should be enough space to pack for a week out of town (with typically clothes and essentials). The bag measures 16.9 D x 9.4 W x 34.3 H, which is well over the size of a carry-on bag so plan on checking this one at the gate if you are flying with it. Along those lines, the Big Bastard duffle is designed with ‘hook-up’ for other Douchebag bags to tag along with. The Base 15L, Hugger 30L or the Hugger 60L from Douchebag will easily attach to the Big Bastard.
The duffle is built on a ‘rib cage construction’. What that means that there are strong, but lightweight ABS ribs framing the bag. This allows the traditional padding to be removed taking out excess weight while leaving the bag’s contents still protected. The outer shell material is polyester 600D/1686D/TPE 500D while the inner lining is polyester 300D. The number/D (denier) rating with the Polyester refers to the type of use and potential elemental resistance the fabric might have. For example, the polyester 300D stands for 300-Denier. Denier is a unit of measurement used to quantify the thickness of yarn or overall thickness of fabric, like polyester. The higher the number, the thicker the fabric will be. Typically 300D is a lightweight fabric and is used in backpacks, electronics cases, and inexpensive luggage. Polyester fabrics can have different coatings applied to them and the Big Bastard duffle definitely feels as though it can not only withstand rain and snow but heavy travel as well.
The weight of the bag is impressive. What I mean by that is that for what it is, it is relatively lightweight. I have a 29-inch suitcase with spinners and it weighs approximately 13 pounds when it’s empty. The Big Bastard weighs less than 10 pounds. This type of weight is crucial when you are trying to get through an airline checkpoint. The last thing you want to do when you check in for your flight is to pay an overweight fee for your bag. So, having a lighter weight bag to start with is preferable when you pack for an extended trip.
That being said, let me tell you about my experiences with the Big Bastard Rolling Duffle Bag.
CES is probably the biggest (aka – longest) trip I take each year. I’m gone from home for at least 7 days and that means I have to pack everything and I mean everything I might need. Deciding what to take is always hard for me because I never know exactly what I might need. Now, my tech bag is a different story. My camera, laptop, accessories, and all other cables are in my tech bag. My suitcase keeps my clothing and personal essentials safe from the elements. This year when I was packing for CES, I decided to give the Big Bastard duffle a try. I am notorious for overpacking and new that it might be a stretch for the giant rolling bag because it is a bit smaller than the standard 29-inch suitcase (see table below).
|Big Bastard Rolling Duffle||Standard 29-inch Rolling/Spinner Suitcase|
I had everything laid out to pack for my trip and found that the Douchebag was filled to the brim, while I still had a bit of room to spare in the standard suitcase. Another consideration I had for this particular trip was that rolling a suitcase behind me — as I would have to do with the Big Bastard — wasn’t really conducive to be efficient for me. The duffle does have some pretty heavy duty wheels on it and I felt secure wheeling it around, but at the time of the trip, I was having some issues with my shoulder and had concerns about pulling something behind me. Again, for that trip, the bag’s form just wasn’t going to meet my functional needs so I opted for my regular suitcase. That said, I was very impressed by how much I could fit into the Big Bastard and am eager to take it on our next trip to Florida, which is a bit shorter of a trip.
Now, even though I felt that the rolling duffle wasn’t suited well for my travel to CES, I did find a very surprising option function for it — hauling video production equipment. About two weeks ago, I was visiting a location that I was going to shoot some video in. It was a doctor’s office and they were still seeing patients. I didn’t have the option for a location scouting voyage prior to the shoot so I had to take everything I thought might be needed — this included specific lighting stands, a monopod, tripod, and some other ancillary accessories like video heads. I was able to pack lighting and camera gear into two rolling backpacks, but that left all the stands. I knew that the location we were going to wasn’t going to allow for a bunch of trips back and forth as we were in a time crunch, so I grabbed the Big Bastard. As it turns out, it’s exceptional height and stable construction made for a perfect gear bag. I was able to load up all the stands, monopod, tripod, and other unwieldy objects into the rolling duffle and our two-person crew could pull the gear into the office in one trip. It was awesome!
Douchebag’s Big Bastard Rolling Duffle is an exceptional piece of luggage and I love that it can be used for many different types of outings and functions. This bag is a multi-purpose option for a multi-purpose world.