Orbit Gear makes some wild designs on bags, some subdued ones, and all around well made offerings. When I saw the C102 Sharpshooter, it looked like a stellar bag and at $128 (+$30 shipping) it was worth picking up to try out.
It’s a very good bag, but not perfect.
Dimensions & Materials
Orbit Gear sells this bag in a few different material options, here I have the ‘elecor580D’ variant. If you search for that material, you’ll get back a lot of links to Orbit Gear. I don’t know if this is because it is made exclusive for them, or if they have simply branded some nylon with this name. What I do know is that this might be one of my favorite bag materials to date.
It feels like 500D, but with a little more softness and smoothness too it like a ballistic nylon married to parapack would have, without picking up any of the shine that you get with ballistic nylon. It’s fantastic feeling, and looking — I also see no reason to doubt the strength for use in bags and such. I am a very big fan. The interior is lined with a 210D, which is completely fine, and feels very nice. The end result is that this bag should prove to be very weather resistant.
The size of this bag is a short 20L, which works out to: 18.1” x 11.8” x 5.5”. It’s wide, and a little short. The bag feels like it packs closer to a 22L bag, but this could simply be because it is not very rigid with the dimensions, so it morphs about a bit to swallow up anything you try and cram into the bag. You get every liter of volume available here.
The straps are contoured, and filled with some of the softest padding I have felt in a long time. They are very cushy on your shoulders, which is great for short spurts, and not great for heavier loads or longer wear (over 2 hours say). Oh, and this bag can fit a 16” laptop.
All in all, good stuff and great build quality.
In Use & Carry
First things first, I really love the way this bag looks. While it feels GR1 inspired, there’s enough changes all around that it doesn’t feel like a clone. There’s webbing, but not so much webbing that it defines the bag. To me, this is a tactical inspired street bag. It’s very clean, without feeling sterile. I am a huge fan.
The bag is a full clamshell design. In the main compartment it offers a fairly weak feeling mesh pocket along the back, a bunch of webbing and a couple of pockets on the flap. Additionally each side (inside the bag) has mesh pockets to keep a water bottle or coffee container upright. The bottom is lightly padded, but still flexible. This is a good space, and none of it feels wasted.
The front quick access pocket is a treat. It holds your gear nicely, while being far more useable than a GR1 front pocket — this is good stuff. My only gripe with the front pocket is that the volume pushes out and into the bag, so it will look pudgy when stuffed. Along the back, there’s a large zippered compartment to stow your laptop. This swallows up my iPads, and is overall good. It is very much designed for a single device, so even two iPad Pros can be pushing the depth on this a good amount.
The thing is, this entire bag is simply soft. So if you have something too angular in the laptop area, it will protrude to your back. This could be resolved with a framesheet, and that would make this bag a lot better to wear, but alas there is not one. More often than not, I also found that the bag looked stuffed full of gear, even when there was still plenty of space to be had — again soft.
But the straps are a mixed result for me. Tossing the bag on and running up to my office with any amount of gear in the bag, is very comfortable. The straps are wide enough, well padded, and insanely soft. However, the few times I wore the bag for longer durations, I started to feel as though the straps were getting irritating to my shoulders — they were too soft, or the bag didn’t offer good enough load management to keep it comfortable.
I never had any issues day to day using this bag, but I also never had any standout moments with it. Everything on it is really nice, especially for the price, but nothing on it is a wow factor in the office.
That’s the crux with this bag. It’s very cool looking. It is well made and with a great feature set. But it could carry gear a lot better, and for my tall frame it feels a bit short on my torso — uncomfortably so at times. That said, my torso is oddly long, so this is not really the fault of this bag, just a quirk of me using the bag.
That said, if shipping were cheaper it would be an instant buy at $128, but at $158 with the cost of shipping it is only a ‘fine value’ proposition. There’s nothing to say is really wrong with it, if you are 6 foot or under, this could be a really stellar bag if you keep your load on the lighter side. For me, it’s close, but not close enough.
If you like the design, then it would be hard to really say there’s any major issue with this bag.