Review: Bagaboo Rancid Rucksack

I've got a new favourite bag, guess what... it's a Bagaboo, again. Almost a year ago I reviewed the superb Bagaboo Workhorse Messenger Bag; a hand-crafted custom made beauty from the Hungarian brand. When I started working over in Portsmouth it became my turn-to kit carrier on a daily basis; keeping everything dry, safe and organised for hours and hours of commuting duty.

After six months of using the Workhorse I decided (after much thought) that although I always enjoy using it and it looks practically untouched, despite some serious abuse, I could really do with something a little smaller for daily duty.

Turning quickly to Bagaboo, I was pleased to find that the brand had recently brought out the Rancid rucksack; the smallest pack in their range, but featuring all the quality, durability and style of its bigger brothers. I placed an order...


Like all Bagaboo bags you can customise your Rancid bag right down to the colour of the lining and the amount of straps that you want. Here's what I went for:

- High visibility orange centre section
- Durable and stain resistant black back and side panels
- Ultra comfortable Airflow back panel cushioning
- Extra waterproofing from a tarpaulin (orange) liner
- Extra security from a removable waist strap
- Removable custom sized iPad sleeve

I got to select all of the above, in addition to the already feature packed bag; which has a light clip, reflective detailing, mesh side pockets, compression straps, a zippered internal pocket and waterproof zips as standard.

The Rancid uses the same ultra durable and water resistant Cordura outer; which both looks great and is very easy to clean with a simple wipe off (great for an everyday commuting pack). The added waterproofing from the tarpaulin liner is an extra, and doesn't feature on the standard because it adds a little weight. However, if you want piece of mind to keep your kit dry, it is a great option.

Pocketing comes from a multitude of little stowage options. On the outside there are two side mesh pockets, which are ideal for stashing a packable jacket, keys and other "quick-access" necessities. Also on the outside of the bag is a water resistant zippered pocket, big enough to hold a phone or belongings that you might want to get to quickly. Then inside, there is a zippered pocket and a key clip, as well as the ability to add in a custom made Bagaboo laptop sleeve (which is equally superbly made), and the routing to take a hydration bladder.

The straps are wide and well padded; making this a comfortable pack even when well loaded. As standard there is a small chest strap to add a bit of extra security, whilst the addition of a chunky optional (and easily removable) waist strap adds a real "lock-down" feel for when the going gets rough.

One of my favourite things with the Rancid is how the main compartment opens. The Workhorse messenger bag was always good in that it had a large opening, which was useful for fitting in odd shaped packages; the Rancid brings a new take on rucksack opening that is in fact similar to a messenger bag. The full length zip allows you to side load the bag and sort through its contents quickly; far better for commuting than the traditional top opening rucksack, in which I was forever losing stuff in the depths.

The Airflow back padding, great strapping and side loading mean that you can carry a huge variety of package sizes and weights in the Rancid, making it ultra diverse and useful. Load it up and "lock it in place" with the waist straps, or carry a light load and compress the pack down with the side compression straps. The options are endless.

Perhaps needless to say, I'm impressed, again. Another superbly crafted, well thought out and great looking rucksack. Small enough that you can use it for just a hydration bladder and tools, but expandable and well made enough that you can load it up with a few days' worth of shopping and ride home. I reckon this could be the ultimate commuting pack.

Check out the Rancid and other awesome custom options at Bagaboo.hu (Link)

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