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· How do I do that?
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561 Posts
I've been using mine for about 4-5 months now and I like it. I used to have the CB Mule but got sick and tired of having to remove the contents so I could put the bladder inside the bag each time. After I stuff the bladder and place the tools, pump, tubes etc. back in, I'd wind up with a log shaped back pack.

Anyway, I love the Race EXP Air. It is bigger then the Mule and at times, I feel like its a bit tall but I prefer the extra capacity and it doesn't feel awkward at all. The venting system they use for the back is simply awesome and actually allows it to sit very stable against my back. I ride in triple digit Arizona summers and that little bit of venting against the back actually helps IMO. I could also put a filled bladder in the bag without having to remove the contents each time and the bag doesn't change the way it rests on my back wether its full or not. The aluminum framed backing/mesh feels and sits the same at all times.

It doesn't have as many little pockets and compartments as I like since the main compartment is just one big pit (it does have one small zippered pouch inside the main compartment)but I just use a smaller pouch/bag to keep small tools in and place that in the bag to keep things organized. I haven't used the built in helmet holder or the wet weather cover yet though. I actually don't understand the point of a helmet holder but it's there if I need it:???:

The water in the Dueters tastes better then the CB bladders as well IMO. I could also stick my hand in the bladder to clean the inside out since it has a large opening. The only gripe I have is the mouth piece. I have the older smaller piece but it dripped and leaked a lot if it didn't close properly, which was often so I switched it to my old CB mouth piece. I know the newer bladder uses a larger different mouth piece so it might not be a problem anymore.

It is a bit on the costly side but its a very well built bag by a German company and I think it pays for itself with the venting back system. If you have a REI store near you, you might be able to check it out before you buy one as I've seen them at my local store.
 

· I Ride Alone
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289 Posts
Its a good bag, I like the Compact EXP 12 better.
I own both.

Exp has airstripes suspension, but better pockets.

If you are under 5'8" or so Race may be too long for you.

Both are excellent no other pack comes close to the quality.

Altrec.com has all the packsand frees hipping.
 

· Old man on a bike
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12,390 Posts
I've been using a Cross Air for several years and another model I don't remember the exact name of before that, both with the Aircomfort suspension/mesh. Pack fits great, ventilates better than any other type I've seen/used. At the time I just swapped over a good Camelbak hydration sack I had as I wasn't crazy about the roll and pinch top or mouthpiece on the Deuter (no idea if that's their current style). The quality and fit of the pack were way better than anything in the Camelbak lineup (at the time at least). Inserting a full water bag into a pack stuffed with clothes, tools, etc could be easier, but I tend to simply fill the hydration sack in place anyways. Deuter's been making various backpacks for a long time, and it shows.
 

· How do I do that?
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561 Posts
Ruger said:
If you are under 5'8" or so Race may be too long for you.
Yup, I'm 5'7" and on occasion, when I stand up on the bike and crouch or something, my arse/lower back kind of lifts the bag up into the back of my neck/helmet. Bothered me at first but it seems I've learned to lessen it from happening too often.:confused:
 

· Registered
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26 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ruger said:
Its a good bag, I like the Compact EXP 12 better.
I own both.

Exp has airstripes suspension, but better pockets.

If you are under 5'8" or so Race may be too long for you.

Both are excellent no other pack comes close to the quality.

Altrec.com has all the packsand frees hipping.
The other one I was looking at is the Compact EXP 8. I'm kind of thinking that the EXP Race may be a bit too big for my needs the more I look at it on the site. I'm probably leaning more towards that now than the Race.

Thanks to everyone else for all of the replies, too. I appreciate it.
 

· Registered
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8,726 Posts
Ruger said:
Its a good bag, I like the Compact EXP 12 better.
I own both.

Exp has airstripes suspension, but better pockets.

If you are under 5'8" or so Race may be too long for you.

Both are excellent no other pack comes close to the quality.

Altrec.com has all the packsand frees hipping.
I heard the EXP 12 loads better and stays flatter, but I really like the aircomfort suspension that holds the bag off your back.
I'm buying a Race X air 1 tomorrow for $80 bucks.
It looks like it isn't quite as long as the exp, nor expandable, but wider and about the same capacity overall.
 

· Registered
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832 Posts
I really like the Race Air EXP. My previous hydration pack was a Dakine, and honestly I never thought I'd sway from that brand. The primary driver for me was sweaty back, and believe me...the trampoline set up addresses that very well. The air flow is awesome and really helps (if not eliminates) sweaty back.

I find the pack itself to be very comfortable while riding. Some have complained of the bottom of the pack poking a bit. I can feel it's there but I don't notice it and it causes no discomfort.

The bladder is awesome. It's really easy to fill and easy to dry. I've never had any mold or nasties, so the antimicrobial must work well.

My only negative comment would be that the main storage compartment has no compartments. It's one big storage unit without some of the little pockets, zippers, and velcro enclosures that other packs have. This is a small detriment and easily overcome by all the positives in other areas.
 

· Registered
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8,726 Posts
My review of the Deuter Race X air 1:
Overall features
1 main compartment with elastic top sleeve for bladder inside, one front compartment that has some smaller pockets in it, two mesh elastic side pockets, and a zip away helmet holder (great).
Unpadded 3/4 inch wide webbing waist belt, sternum strap that can slide on its attachment points up and down so you can place it where you want it.
100 oz bladder that has complete wide open top, folding top seal, angle bite valve that twists to lock closed, and comes with a cap to keep it clean.
Suspension system keeps pack off your back as advertised, rigid frame extends to belt attachment points and provides little nubs that rest on your hips and take some weight off your shoulders.

Highlights:
I think the helmet holder is my favorite feature of this pack. It is like having a small pack with a magically large capacity. The helmet holder material is a 360 degree stretch fabric, and held my fairly bulky northface shell easily.
The suspension system is nice and comfortable. The weight rides low and on the hips.
The shoulder straps are unpadded webbing material, but feel just as comfortable as padded straps I am used to.
Overall, material and construction seem high quality.

Gripes:
I think a pack of this quality should have a better belt. It doesn't have to be padded, but 1.5" wide webbing (as my camelback has) would be more supportive and comfortable than the 3/4" provided. With that said, it still does the job. A better belt would also facilitate adding a front access pocket on the belt, which would be nice for access to some things without taking off the pack (like an MP3 player for example).
I like the bladder and the bite valve with cover, but wish the tubing was detachable, as on my polar pack bladder. It really makes it more convenient to pull out the bladder to fill or clean. It would also be nice if the tube was insulated. The tube could also be longer, as I have been using an under the armpit tube routing with my camelback, but the tube is too short to use this routing with my Deuter.
I bought the pack mainly for the suspension, to relieve shoulder stress and reduce back sweat. It does the job in these areas, much better than a simple foam backed pack. But, a better belt as I mentioned, would make it better and easier to transfer weight to the hips.
I like big packs and felt at first this one might be a little too small. The frame curves back away from your body toward the bag, so when you load it, the bag also seems curved rather than wide open, but I could still get plenty of stuff into it, and the helmet holder has alleviated any fear that I won't have enough capacity for jackets or other foul weather gear.
Overall, it almost looks too simple compared to some of the packs that try to add every feature, zipper, snap, webbing , bungee cord, pocket, etc under the sun, but it has what you need and is very functional, comfortable, and well designed.
 
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