This is where you will find the technical information on all our products. If you have a question and it cannot be answered here, get in touch and we will help if we can.
TYPES OF BAG
The bags in our range can be broadly split into two main categories: Immersion and Water Resistant. Both have their place on an expedition and based on the time of year, environment and protection requirements, you can select the most appropriate option.
All bags showing this symbol are suitable for full water immersion. We always guarantee our waterproof bags can go down to depths of 30m below the surface and keep the contents completely dry. If you need a bag to go deeper than this, get in touch and we can discuss which one is most suitable.
All bags showing this symbol are suitable for protection against rain showers, snow melt and wet ground. They are not suitable for prolonged use in wet weather as the seams may not be taped. If this is a possibility we suggest moving to one of our waterproof bags with the Immersion symbol. However, we still make sure our water resistant fabrics have a practical hydrostatic head and a DWR finish.
We know that working with great manufacturing partners is one of the key ingredients in making great products. We have many years of experience manufacturing products in Europe and the Far East for other brands and now Piteraq Hardware, so we think we can spot the good ones.
When we say “good ones” we are not talking about the manufacturers that are cheap or fast. We mean the product quality must be exceptional and they are up to date with their labour standards, which covers issues such as; child labour, terms of employment, health & safety, the working environment and the prevention of cruelty to animals.
For example, we are working with arguably the best pack factory in the business, making bags for the likes of Gregory Packs, Patagonia, Black Diamond and Arcteryx. The experience this manufacturer brings combined with our expedition design knowledge means we make some of the very best products on the market today.
Our products have been copied in the past and we are sure they will be again in the future, which can be frustrating, but we are confident the competition cannot match the quality we achieve as they will always cut corners on materials and manufacture.
The main compartments on the Piteraq Hardware waterproof bags (Immersion) are not sewn or glued, but the parts required for a bag are firmly joined by means of high frequency welding. This creates a waterproof and extremely durable connection as strong as the fabric. Only industrial standard high frequency welds allow for high seam strengths and excellent waterproofing within narrow manufacturing tolerances. This quality standard cannot be attained with other types of weld.
The 2D welding process is used for flat areas such as the reinforcement patches located under straps and handles. The 3D welding process is used for manufacturing the complex shapes that make up the Piteraq Hardware bags.
The traditional method of sewn construction is still used extensively throughout our product range. Where you see the sewn construction logo you know this product is not part of our Immersion range and it is more likely to be water resistant rather than waterproof. They can still be highly weather protective but will not be suitable for a life underwater.
That is not to say we do not use traditional sewn construction on our waterproof bags, we do. However the sewn parts will be non-critical to water immersion.
Were sewn construction is used we make sure we always select high quality thread that will not break or rot with prolonged use in hostile environments, we go with a high stitch count and make sure great care is put into every bartack.
To guarantee the strongest handle and webbing connections on our bags, we have drawn on years of R&D to make sure the correct method is used in the most appropriate place. Where necessary, a combination of reinforcement patches and shaped bartacks ensures the maximum strength in all pull directions. We have developed our own curved half-moon bartack for the end carry handles, which spreads the load no matter which way the handle is pulled. This is vital when carrying loads exceeding 40kg.
Quality Control is vital in ensuring the standards we set out with are met at every stage. We work very hard to make sure our manufacturing partners understand the quality level we are trying to achieve and in return they take great pride in making our products. We have in place a robust Quality Control procedure, particularly on our waterproof bags, to ensure every one of them leaves the factory ready for a hard life on an expedition or on a marine based military operation.
One of our early guiding principles was to use the best materials (fabrics, zips and other trim) we could source throughout our product range. We felt that other brands out there compromised on this area and as such the products were not meeting the demands of people on expeditions and in particular the Special Forces.
For example, our coated fabrics are jointly engineered with our suppliers for a specific field of application and are manufactured to our own quality standards. An exceptionally high degree of coating adhesion is essential to ensure that the outer and inner coatings on the fabric is durable. This ensures the welded seams are stronger than the fabric itself and thus increases the product lifetime.
When we wanted to product test some of our bags we arranged for them to be thrown out of military helicopters on exercise in the North of Norway. This allowed us to check all our welded seams could deal with high impacts and that the plastic componentry would last through multiple military tours.
We are continuously evaluating the quality of the materials we use and are always looking for new ways to build better products.
The lightest fabric in our range, the 30D Rip allows us to make products that are functional without adding excess weight on an expedition. It is a 30 Denier square ripstop Nylon with a silicon coating one side and a PU coating on the other. It comes with a 3m hydrostatic head, which is perfect for shedding snow melt or sitting on damp ground. Traditionally used on high end lightweight tent flysheets we have found it ideal for making lightweight bags such as the Arctic Bedding or Pack Bags.
Finding the balance between durability and low weight our 210D is perfect for our toughest pulk bags. It is a 210 Denier textured Nylon which offers a much higher level of abrasion resistance and tear strength when compared with cheaper Nylons. A layer of Polyurethane (PU) to the inside achieves a consistent 0.8m hydrostatic head, which is perfect for shedding snow melt or sitting on damp ground. To the outside there is a resilient DWR for added weather protection.
420D RIP TPU
Working with one of the leading suppliers of weldable waterproof bag fabrics, we have developed a light but extremely durable 420 Denier square ripstop Nylon with a TPU coating on both sides. It comes with a 100m hydrostatic head, which ensures full immersion protection to extreme depths. This fabric is great where weight saving is preferred and we use it on whole or partial bags.
Working with one of the leading suppliers of weldable waterproof bag fabrics, we have developed an extremely durable 840 Denier plain Nylon with a TPU coating on both sides. It comes with a 100m hydrostatic head, which ensures full immersion protection to extreme depths. This fabric is great where long term durability and protection are the number one priorities.
There is only one choice when picking a tough non-waterproof bag fabric and that is Cordura®. Cordura® branded fabrics are recognised for their long-lasting durability and resistance to abrasions, tears and scuffs. To start with we selected a tough 1000 Denier textured Nylon 66 Cordura®. We then added not one, but two layers of clear Polyurethane (PU) to the inside to achieve a consistent 2m hydrostatic head, which is perfect for being left out on a rain soaked airport runway, shedding snow melt or sitting on damp ground. We finally added a resilient DWR for added weather protection.
We are very careful to pick a non-toxic environmentally friendly alternative to PVC coatings for all our bags.
The Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU) we use can be recycled in-process, post industrial, or post consumer. Water and carbon dioxide are the primary by products of this fabric, therefore it can be incinerated cleanly. For decades, PVC has been the primary material used for fabrics in bags and luggage. Using our TPU eliminates the detrimental effects this chemical has on the environment.
No dioxins, heavy metals, chlorine, or phthalates are created during our TPU production and it meets current European regulations.
Eco-friendly attributes of our TPU fabrics:
- PVC free
- Chloro free
- Azo free
- No dioxin, heavy metals or phthalate pollution
- No Ozone depleting substances
- No dye dispersal
- Compliance with the latest European regulations
All our waterproof zips come from TIZIP based and manufactured in Germany. Founded in 1998, the TIZIP waterproof zipper is a combination of several unique ideas and new technical approaches for making a waterproof and airtight zipper. This is the first zipper system which can replace the well-known metal tooth dry zippers, which have been in use since the early 1950s on dry bags and diving suits.
We use the MasterSeal 10, which is made from high-strength fabric coated with thermoplastic polyurethane. The extra strong plastic teeth are fixed on the top and bottom of the zipper tape. The zipper’s coupling elements keep the sealing edges tightly sealed together when the zipper is closed. It is easy to pull and more flexible than any other waterproof zipper. They are pressure tested to 500mbar with a cross breaking strength minimum of 200 N/cm.
In the real world this means we are confident you can take one of our waterproof bags underwater to at least 30m, perfect for exiting a submarine torpedo tube.
SHOULDER STRAP FOAM
From the very start we decided to make sure all our bags were comfortable to carry on your back. It is very common for kitbags/duffle bags to have very low quality carry systems when compared with the rucksacks on the market. However, in our experience everyone at some stage wants to use their bag like a rucksack, be that to catch an airport shuttle bus, moving between basecamps or when you are also portaging a kayak.
We took the approach of building great kit hauling bags, with all their advantages, with near rucksack levels of carry comfort and support.
Working with a manufacturer who makes for the likes of Gregory Packs has helped us develop two levels of carry system: We have a simplified system on some of our smaller bags where loads and distances will be relatively small. We then have our premium system on the majority of our bags where we expect loads and distances to be high.
Both systems use high quality pre-curved EVA foam harnesses, but the premium system offers more adjustment options, moisture wicking fabrics to help you keep dry on the main contact points of the body, additional padding and a fully adjustable chest harness, which helps mobility and proper load transfer over waterproof or insulated layers.
PFOA FREE DWR
The products that are treated with a DWR (durable water repellent) use C6 fluorocarbon-based water repellents, which do not contain PFOA. Piteraq Hardware uses fluorocarbons for functional reasons, but only on products where it is absolutely necessary.