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Thread: Utility Backpack for Construction Materials.,,

  1. #1
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    Utility Backpack for Construction Materials.,,

    What is the typical backpack solution for having to lug odd shaped things long distances...such as short 2x8's for bridge decking....flat stones that are far away from the maintenance area.. shovels and tools...etc....shingles for a lean-to?

  2. #2
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    Definitely external frame packs

    The old AMC standby https://sectionhiker.com/amc-hut-crew-packboards/ Somewhere buried in my collection is set of plans for building one but it would require digging deep

    If you do not want to build your own, the hunting community uses external frame backpacks with shelves called freighter packs.

    Old Kelty or Camp Trail external frame packs used to be pretty beefy and it didnt require a lot of work to add a shelf. The biggest issue is the foam waistbelts and the shoulder straps are probably in need of replacement

  3. #3
    Senior Member TCD's Avatar
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    As an add-on, I've also seen crews attach a square plastic milk crate to a frame or a pack board. It's a good way to support things like chainsaws or other heavy odd shaped things.
    Last edited by TCD; 05-07-2022 at 12:53 PM. Reason: correct typo

  4. #4
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    Seek Outside makes very comfortable external frame packs. Many of them have breakaway pack bags allowing you to put things between the frame and packbag. You could toss the 2x8s in the breakaway section and fill the pack bag with the stones. These frames handle weight exceptionally well and the are still very comfortable when loaded up.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Hillwalker's Avatar
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    I have an AMC inspired pack board that I built to carry loads years ago I used it to carry a Husquvarna 353 Saw, fuel, bar oil, drinking water and my lunch working as a USFS Leven B Sawyer many years ago. it has an Ash and Oak frame, Canvas wrapping, full leather straps, and load lashing hooks. I'll dig it out tomorrow and add photos to this post.

    It ain't pretty, and could be lighter, but willing to let it go free if it can get utilized as it was once intended. Poor thing has been sitting for years wondering if it would ever get back into the woods again.

    Now that I'm in my 80s, I tend to anthropormorphise all my old belongings. They sometimes whisper to me, "the end is near dummy"

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    Last edited by Hillwalker; 05-09-2022 at 10:38 AM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Jazzbo's Avatar
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    I recall one time being on chainsaw crew at Mount Cardigan where the chainsaw operator had a very nice external frame pack rig for carrying his chainsaw. I liked it so much I took a photo of it and filed it in my photos under trail work pics. In hind sight I only just took a quick snapshot and photos doesn't show any details on how he actually attached his saw. I seem to recall mounting and dismounting went fairly quickly. He has mounted the saw in upright position probably to prevent fuel/oil leakage.

    On #67 of NE67
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    Senior Member TEO's Avatar
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    Child carrier packs such as the Deuter Kid Comfort can be repurposed as pack boards. The Deuter has a nice ledge at the bottom, and IIRC, I only had to remove two screws to remove the child seat and storage section. Short of cutting it off, the face padding isn't able to be removed, but the trade-off is an excellent suspension designed to carry heavy, awkward loads.

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    Senior Member sierra's Avatar
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    IME in North Conway has a large consignment area and you may find an external frame pack down in the basement. They get some old gear in there and it's pretty cost effective verses new. Those old packs were great for hanging stuff, you could dry your laundry while you hiked.

  9. #9
    Senior Member bignslow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TEO View Post
    Child carrier packs such as the Deuter Kid Comfort can be repurposed as pack boards. The Deuter has a nice ledge at the bottom, and IIRC, I only had to remove two screws to remove the child seat and storage section. Short of cutting it off, the face padding isn't able to be removed, but the trade-off is an excellent suspension designed to carry heavy, awkward loads.

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    That's a great solution.

    I built one out of an old external frame pack and a plastic milk crate (holding the crate to the frame with some hose clamps). It lasted for a few years (and stored in the garage full of tools) until the plastic on the milk create gave way. If I were to build another one, I'd probably add some structure to distribute the load across more of the milk crate.
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