B5 Systems

Tactical Tailor – Pacific Northwest Pack Series

Tactical Tailor prepared a press release on their new line of Pacific Northwest Packs, which can be read below:


The PNW Pack Series has been kicking around in Tactical Tailor’s design shop for about 18 months.  Obviously Tactical Tailor geeks out over backpacks and we love the great Pacific North West.  We love the fit, form and function that a lot of the climbing/alpine packs offered in the mountains, but the problem that consistently surfaced was light weight packs only work well when you put light weight things in them.  A pack that works awesome for camping and climbing in the Cascades would fall apart as soon as you added 2 SAW drums, 100 rounds of 7.62 link, a mortar round and a few 5590 batteries.

We would often joke that the US Military got three things right, the smoking jacket, the poncho liner and the ALICE pack.   Unfortunately ever since, the US Military has been trying to get rid of them once they saw that they worked and the troops loved them;  well, as much as anyone can love a piece of GI equipment…

The Regiment-Front

Tactical Tailor staff travels the US about 30-40 weeks a year doing trade shows and visiting our nation’s war fighters.  The two things we hear consistently is that the ALICE/MALICE frame is king and that our supporters wish we would build a new pack since they can’t wear their old one out and need an excuse to buy a new one.

We started thinking about how we could combine our love of the MALICE pack with more updated outdoor design features that we loved and the PNW Pack Series was born.

Tahoma Tote-Front

In 2015, Larry Coffey, the owner of Tactical Tailor and the father of the late Tactical Tailor founder Logan Coffey, mentioned that he would love to have a team in the 2016 Bataan Memorial Death March.  As we all learned early in our military careers, a suggestion from the commander is really an order, so we wasted no time in starting our training.

As we were working through the design process we carried these packs up Mount Si, Tiger Mountain, Mount Rainer (aka Mount Tahoma) and along the Nisqually River with military weight loads.  We post holed in the snow, trekked through frozen fog and walked in white out conditions. The mountains wasted no time in telling us what we got right and what we got painfully wrong.  We’d hit the design table, make some changes and hit the mountains again the next weekend.  Some of the great new features that resulted from these experiences are an adjustable suspension system with load lifters, low profile super straps, outward cinching super belts, compression straps and exterior access zips. Plus, if you like the look of these new straps and belts, they will be available for sale separately too.

The Nisqually-Front

Tactical Tailor is looking forward to walking our packs in the Bataan memorial Death March on March 20 at White Sands, NM and they will be available for customers to order that same day. It’s been an amazing journey back to our roots rucking our own designs and we look forward to sharing them with everyone that has supported us over the years.  We hope to see everyone at White Sands or whatever post, camp or base we land at after that. Of course, if you’re ever at Fort Lewis, come see us, we have a Starbucks machine!

Got questions or need to get your hands on one of these awesome new packs? Look us up on the web at www.tacticaltailor.com, drop us a line at customerservice@tactcialtailor.com or give us a shout 253-984-7854.


25 Responses to “Tactical Tailor – Pacific Northwest Pack Series”

  1. TheCrustyCameron says:

    Very excited for this modernization, should find a nice, healthy user base.

  2. ThatBlueFalcon says:

    Outstanding. Can’t wait to swing by the showroom and see them in person. Good luck at Bataan!

    • Kris says:

      I was there this morning and asked about them. No word in pricing and they said they won’t have then till later in April.

  3. Dave says:

    Looking forward to finger fucking a pack at the Bataan Death March! See you then…

  4. historia says:

    looks good,

  5. Jeremy says:

    Excellent. Was looking at picking up a pack this year. Any idea what the price points are going to be?

  6. straps says:

    Great to see this.

    Presuming that it will work with the DEI ALICE compatible frames? I know it’s not popular to like those frames (and the early generations were deserving of derision) but my latest 1606 is holding up nicely. What it needs is a purveyor of great aftermarket kit to build a truly armor-compatible suspension. *COUGH*.

    And enjoy Bata’an. Definitely a bucket list item that I’m gonna do again before I’m too old for such folly.

    • elliot says:

      What would you consider armor-compatible? I only ask because I kind of like the way everything on my Malice fits while armored up.

      • Luke says:

        agreed, in general alice/malice frame seems to fit on armor better then the DEI frames.

        • elliot says:

          I actually just got a 1606 frame with their in-house harness and the belt from the 1609. Gonna see how it compares.

      • straps says:

        I’ve humped an ALICE over a PC and it was do-able. Not so with full coverage armor.

        My frame of reference is Kifaru’s Armor Grip. I have AG versions of their frame and one of their assault packs. Kifaru dumped AG because it wasn’t profitable (even at a price point beyond the reach of many military personnel). Still, EVERYONE who’s ever tried those packs “gets” what Kifaru was doing.

        I’ve rigged a DEI frame with a set of ALICE pack straps and a Crye Blast Belt (good contour for load bearing, not so high as to interfere with armor). Pretty sure a crew of TT’s talented professionals could exceed my “bad scientist” setup at a price within the reach of a young troop from Ft. Lewis.

        A lot of troops (and leaders) confuse the necessary and inevitable cardiovascular stress of a pack and armor with the unnecessary musculoskeletal stress (leading to permanently debilitating injuries) of wearing and bearing components developed in separate silos.

        • elliot says:

          Good point about full coverage armor. How much were the AG packs/frame?

        • tm says:

          To add two cents to this discussion in what I hope is a balanced/nuanced manner (going along with the respectful love/hate relationship with Alice I’ve experienced):

          The ALICE frame puts more weight on your shoulders due to the shorter frame length (with straps attaching to the top of the frame, not allowing for much if any lift). Some of the unnecessary suffering endured by many over the years is due to not actually using the waistbelt as designed (fastened) to transfer at least some weight to the hips. This is without armor.

          This shorter frame length helps mitigate one issue: being effective in the prone position. That being said it’s still not comfortable being in the prone with a fully loaded ALICE Large, but you can still lift your head higher versus longer-frame packs (such as a Kifaru 26″ suspension for example). The general argument seems to be that ALICE-framed packs (or with similar dimensions such as DEI 1606) are better all-around “fighting” packs versus those with longer frames that are easier on your shoulders in the short-term, and on your back long-term, but are no good for fighting in the prone position.

          Wearing with armor, a few factors affect comfort/ergonomics in my opinion: frame length – longer frame length needed to provide weight transference from back to hips; frame curvature – SAPI (hard armor) plates are C-curve compared to S-curve of the spine; lumbar pad/belt should allow contact below armor for effective weight transfer.

          Considering these factors, the ALICE and similar frames don’t provide much transfer of weight to the hips wearing body armor. That being said they inherently support the C-curve of body armor where I think traditional S-curved pack frames fail. (Straps – still hearing you, I think Kifaru worked to offset this as well as Mystery Ranch and Tyr among others who offer bolsters for armor-friendliness). With the ALICE frame and standard-issue DEI frames (i.e. U.S. Army-issue MOLLE Large/Medium), loosening tension on the waistbelt seems to help keep them stable over armor.

          My suggestions for further development of the venerable ALICE frame: look at multiple frame length options as well as waistbelts that provide lumbar support while working with armor. (A good thing about ALICE is it’s inherently modular: frame, shoulder straps, waist best, pack.)

  7. Airborne_fister says:

    Ok dumb question. Think you guys would ever make a bag that could attach to the back of a wheelchair? I have and am looking for a bag that doesn’t have to modified (i.e. 550 cord in weird places).

    • Joe says:

      Definitely not a dumb question. You have no idea the things we hear…

      It’s probably not something that would be a normal sale item, but once the packs are released, contact our custom shop at customshop@tacticaltailor.com and they probably would be able to put something together that works for you.

      • Airborne_fister says:

        Awesome thanks joe. Btw. I’m Joey ever see the video of the paralyzed vet who stood God for his first dance? If so that’s me.

  8. Grady Burrell says:

    Great Company, Great Prople and Great Gear !

  9. Luke says:

    Molle webbing on the pack belt, does that mean an update for the venerable super belt?

    • Joe says:

      The belt and straps will be available separately and yes they are a great alternative to our original Super Belt and Super Straps. There will also be a set of lighter weight straps if you want something more low profile.

  10. Jon Meyer says:

    I am digging them. Hopefully they can utilize the 1606 frame. The above distain for the 1606 is the first I have heard. I also hope they offer them in Ranger Green. These remind me of my Grey Ghost MMR which I really like.

    Will the straps and waist belt be compatible with the 1606 frame?