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Ribz Front Pack Reviewed

Ribz Front Pack

Marketing from RIBZ

The RIBZ front pack is made of 210d water resistant ripstop nylon. The ribs pack weighs approx. 11 oz. All components are water resistant and have proven durability in the most extreme of conditions. With an average storage capacity between 500 and 700 cubic inches, you can comfortably relocate your desired weight in the front packs.

The use of a front pack repositions a portion of your weight forward which reduces your overall shoulder stress and increases comfort, mobility, and balance. A front pack also creates the illusion of carrying a lighter load. Though the RIBZ front pack was designed with ultralight backpacking intentions, any outdoor activity where easy access of equipment is critical is where it proves beneficial. RIBZ front pack can be used alone as a vest but is primarily designed to work with your existing backpack as increased functionality.


Manufacturer: RIBZ,
Model: RIBZ Front Pack

Fabric: 210D Cordura Brand water resistant ripstop
Colors: Alpine Green, Granite Grey, Alpenglow, Stealth Black & Raptor Camo
Weight: 11 oz.

   Capacity: 8 Liter
   Waist: 26-34 inch

   Capacity: 8 Liter
   Waist: 34-38 inch

   Capacity: 11 Liter
   Waist: 34-38 inch

   Capacity: 11 Liter
   Waist: 40+ inch

MSRP: $64.95


The Review

Carrying an EDC on my back has been working great for years. I am able to bring along my laptop when I need to and I have plenty of room left for any other gear that I might need where I am headed. But having to stop every time that I need to get something out of my pack is always such an inconvenience. Especially when I’m on a trail with my dogs or a group of people.

Ribz Front PackThe concept of a front-accessible pack is nothing new, and some manufacturers have taken them to the next level. Over the last few months I’ve had the opportunity to try out the RIBZ Front Pack and integrate it into my gear rotation. Now that I’ve spent some time using it, I am finally ready to share my experience…

The RIBZ Front Pack was specially designed to provide fast and unfettered access to your most commonly used gear without having to blindly reach into pockets in your pack while it’s still strapped to your back, or worse force you to remove your pack altogether just to gain access to what you need. Having important items always within reach is pretty appealing.

The RIBZ Front Pack can be used by itself as a small daypack or EDC, or in concert with just about any backpack. To achieve this, the RIBZ support system relies heavily on an adjustable chest rig that not only supports all of the weight, it also firmly positions the pack so that it will ride below your chest just enough that it won’t impede the use of your arms, yet high enough above your waistline to accommodate a padded hip belt.

I like to change up my gear depending on where I am headed, and whether or not I am taking a backpack with me as well. But most of the time I load the Front Pack with at least a decent folding knife, flashlight, compass with a signal mirror, some cordage, a mylar blanket or two, a water filter and collapsible water bottle, first aid kit, hand wipes, lighter and ferro rod, pen and paper, shemagh, pair of gloves, pack of mints and some jerky. Even with all that gear, there is still plenty of room for my firearm, cell phone and a few other necessities that I might be needing.

When I stop to make camp, or just for a quick break I usually take off my main pack. But I like to leave my Front Pack on which is perfect for me because I also tend to wander off to scout, find water, firewood, materials, or maybe just to take a leak. I really enjoy the peace of mind in knowing that I have at least some gear on me at all times while I’m out and about. You never know when you’ll run into an emergency situation, and the Front Pack makes it really easy for me to always be ready.

Ribz Front PackThe Front Pack is made from a rugged 210D Cordura Brand Ripstop fabric for its light weight and exceptional resistance to water, abrasion and tearing. At only 11 ounces, the pack is extremely lightweight for how durable it is. The 210D Cordura is an excellent choice for this pack because it is not nearly as rigid or heavy as a 500D or 1000D Cordura would be so the pack can conform comfortably to your ribcage and flex as you move.

Each Front Pack comes neatly packed inside a Ripstop nylon sack, currently available in Alpine Green, Granite Grey, Alpenglow, Stealth Black and Raptor Camo, each with durable black nylon webbing for the straps. The best way to get your pack clean is to hand wash it with soap and water and then air it dry. Sure they can be machine washed in the gentle cycle, but it is not recommended by RIBZ.

The packs are available in two capacities and four waist sizes. Both the small and medium Front Packs consist of two 4-liter packs for a combined total of 8-liters. The large and extra-large Front Packs on the other hand consist of two 5.5-liter packs for a combined total of 11-liters. Each pocket is held closed with a medium-duty zipper that has a short nylon pull and rubberized plastic tab attached to the end. The two packs are connected together with a heavy-duty zipper for extra strength and durability. This allows the Front Pack to rapidly be put on and taken off.

The two large pockets on the smaller 8-liter pack are approximately 11-inches wide, 6.5-inches tall, 1-inch deep, and there are two mesh organizational pockets inside each. There is a smaller externally accessible pocket approximately 6.5-inches wide, 3.5-inches tall and 1-inch deep attached to the outside of each large pocket.

The two large pockets on the larger 11-liter pack are approximately 11-inches wide, 7.5-inches tall, 1.5-inch deep, and there are also two mesh organizational pockets inside each. Fixed to the outside of each large pocket, there is a smaller externally accessible pocket approximately 7-inches wide, 4.5-inches tall and 1-inch deep.

Ribz Front PackOne key advantage that the Front Pack provides has to do with load distribution. Distributing some of the pack weight forward will help improve balance, comfort and mobility while reducing fatigue. The generous pocket sizes provide ample storage and weight distribution possibilities.

The small pack is for waist sizes 26 to 34 inches, while the medium accommodates waist sizes 34 to 38 inches. The medium pack is recommended for most activities, but if you need extra storage capacity, the larger pack will certainly give you that. The large pack will accommodate waist sizes 34 and 38 inches, and the extra-large pack is configured for waist sizes 40 inches and above.

The shoulder straps are made from 1-inch nylon webbing and rugged nylon buckles designed to work much like a pair of suspenders or a chest rig. They attach to both ends of each pack in a criss-cross pattern. The front strap on one side attaches to the back of the pack on the opposite side. Where they cross between the shoulder blades there is a strong plastic guide to keep them locked in place right before they go over the shoulder. The two shoulder pads consist of a padded nylon mesh on the underside for maximum airflow, and they are covered with the same Cordura fabric that the packs are made from.

When you first put the pack on, it is best to put some gear in it before you begin adjusting the straps so you can get an accurate feel of where it should ride on your ribcage and how tight it should be. I recommend adjusting the shoulder straps and setting the position of the shoulder pads first. Once you get the height just where you want it, then you can easily adjust the back straps much more rapidly. They should be snug for high intensity activities and loose for more casual ones.

Ribz Front Pack

In a light to moderate downpour, the Cordura fabric should easily block any moisture from entering the pack. However, if the pack ever became submerged, the bags would likely fill up, trapping the water inside drenching any gear. After wearing the pack for long periods of time, I noticed that there was not really any airflow between the pack and my belly so I would get pretty sweaty there. But not so much that the inside of the pack would become wet.

RIBZ guarantees all products to be free from any defects in material or craftsmanship for a period of one year from the date of purchase. The warranty is limited to the original purchaser of the product and is not transferable. Check their website for more details.


Final Thoughts

The RIBZ Front Pack is a well-designed front pack system made from 210D Cordura Brand Ripstop fabric, durable nylon webbing, and quality stitching so it is very comfortable to wear and definitely built to last. The design places all of your go-to gear right where you need it and can access it quickly. Both the 8 and 11 -liter pack sizes have the capacity necessary to accommodate most commonly used survival gear that you might need quick access to without having to overstuff them. After spending a few months with the RIBZ pack, it has undoubtedly become a valuable addition to my survival gear.

However, there are a few minor features that I would hope to see added to the design in future models including a button or velcro link to hold the back-end of the two packs together when you are not wearing it. Some simple loop handles to carry the pack would make it much easier to hang up or transport when it is not in use. Another set of mesh organizational pockets along the front-side of the two larger pockets would also be very helpful, and it might even be nice to see some velcro attachment points at key locations inside the pack for attaching things like a holster or magazine pouches. Additionally, I would like to see some kind of mesh material on the back-side of the two packs that allows more airflow.

But even without these minor improvements implemented, the high-quality materials and outstanding design of the RIBZ Front Pack provides a lot of value at a very reasonable price. This pack deserves two thumbs up in my book.


<p class="disclosure">Disclosure of Material Connection: We received the product(s) mentioned above for free or at a discount in consideration for a complete, honest and impartial product review for publication on with no guarantee of the outcome whatsoever. Any opinion provided herein is based entirely on our personal experience with the product(s).</p>



About RIBZ

RIBZRIBZ is based in Coronado California, home to The United States Navy Seals. For many years the military has valued the benefits and utility of the front pack. The ability to carry heavier loads and the simplicity of accessing your gear with ease has proven its usefulness. It was for this reason that the RIBZ team spent countless hours carefully evaluating all of the different calculated designs in an effort to perfect a model for all outdoor recreation.

RIBZ was co-created by the most often decorated US Navy SEAL Frank Thornton. Frank has been awarded 17 individual combat awards for valor and has carried load bearing gear of all shapes and sizes from the combat zones of South East Asia, through the sands of Iraq and the mountains of Afghanistan. Frank KNOWS gear. After careful assessment of every available product, we created the RIBZ design to be the most practical and functional for any situation in need of accessible gear access.

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