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F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?
  
 
OwlsEyes
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Hello,
I am looking to hear from those who have used the F-Stop series bags. I travel a lot (Africa, Costa Rica, Europe, throughout the US). I am a nature photographer (wildlife and landscapes http://btleventhal.com). I carry a simple but versatile kit: 5Diii, 7D, 300 f2.8ISL, 100mm macro, 40 f2.8, 17-40L, 320 EX.

I need to be able to carry all the gear with room for survival gear (jacket + food). I want to be able to keep my 300 f2.8 mounted to my 7D (hood attached if possible).

I currently put all my gear in a ThinkTank HD and can keep the hood on in shooting position. Unfortunately, this bag leaves no room for food or clothes and the frame and straps are less than ideal. The benefit of my think tank is that it can fit under plane seats, the problem... not ideal of back country applications.

Finally, I have looked at the Guru gear series... great for the gear (like my ThinkTank), but not great for long distance or challenging treks.

Will the F-Stop Loka meet my needs? Anyone who has one or has experience with the bag, please chime in.

regards,
bruce



Oct 29, 2013 at 03:52 PM
killersnowman
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Check out their icu pages http://fstopgear.com/product/mountain/icu/pro/xlarge they have great pics of each one with a multitude of gear packed in each. As far as the packs go, they are great, i have a loka and its very comfy but might be a bit small. Not sure. I don't know how big a 300/2.8 is


Oct 29, 2013 at 04:32 PM
dsjtecserv
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


I don't have a 300 f/2.8 or a Loka, but I do have a Tilopa and use it with variable loads depending on the circumstances. I think you would almost certainly need the Large Pro ICU for the 300 with the 7D attached, and it would then hold the rest of your gear easily. The Loka is a bit smaller than the Tilopa, so the Large ICU will take up most, but not all of the vertical space in the compartment. Depending on how much hiking gear you need to carry, and how well you utilize the exterior pockets, this might well be enough. If not, the Tilopa offers a bit more room and would almost certainly be adequate. I have actually used it for overnight trips, stuffing a lightweight sleeping bag above the ICU with jackets and food, etc., and a small tent in the exterior back pocket.

The individual pages for the Tilopa and Loka have charts showing the space occupied by different ICUs within the pack, which should give you a pretty good idea of how much space wold be left over for other gear.

I don't think the Tilopa would work under a plane seat; it would probably project into your foot area too much to satisfy the flight attendants. It does fine in the overhead bin, however. The Loka may be enough smaller that it would work under the seat.

Dave



Oct 29, 2013 at 04:47 PM
can0nfan2379
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Hi there,

I have a Tilopa BC and a large pro ICU. In the ICU I have a Zeiss 21 Distagon, EF 300 2.8L IS mounted on a gripped 5D3 with hood reversed, timer remote control and various other small stuff. With the large pro ICU in the bag I have just enough room in the top for light weight goretex jacket & pants, small first aid kit, GPS/compass, water purifier, and some granola bars.

There isn't that much room left in the ICU for any other lenses. If you are going to be mostly self reliant with your pack, I might even consider the Satori and XL pro ICU.




Oct 29, 2013 at 05:09 PM
dgdg
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


I have a Loka and Large Pro ICU, 400mm DO (which is about the same size as your 300mm 2.8). The 400 DO with hood reversed (stowed) does fit horizontally without a body attached inside the Large Pro ICU/Loka. When you are onsite you could rearrange things vertically, putting the body on the lens in the ICU. You'd have to check the length of the body/lens/hood to see if you could fit if vertically but I doubt it even with the xlarge pro icu. And with the hood out, you've lost serious space in your bag. Once you fill up your listed gear in the ICU, you will have a little room left for things, but not significant food and survival gear unless you start hanging stuff on the outside. It's a carry-on sized bag, fine for a day hike with some extra things (clothing, snacks) you might need, but that's it I'm afraid. I find the straps/supports fine loaded for a day hike, but I'm not doing your kind of stuff. Sounds like you will want a carry on pack/case for your gear which could be the Loka, but then you'll need a seriously sized pack for your additional gear (food, bag, tent, etc). The Loka, if not bulging, will fit with a tight squeeze sideways into an Embrair overhead compartment assuming the space is not occupied in the first place. under seats are fine, and if needed you could always pull out the ICU and check only the pack.

p.s. need a paid assistant?

Edited on Oct 29, 2013 at 05:38 PM · View previous versions



Oct 29, 2013 at 05:21 PM
Hardcore
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


I can help you a bit.... I wanted to carry the following in the Tilopa BC with the Large Slant ICU.

D800 Not Gripped
70-200mm 2.8
35mm F1.4
14-24mm F2.8
300mm F2.8
Flash
Fotodiox filters.

It just wasn't possible with the large slant. The large pro might have helped a bit, but with the slant, it was just awkward. With the large pro, you'd lose even more internal room. Right now with the Slant, I can fit my mac retina in the sleeve with a jacket in the back.

I now carry the 300mm F2.8 on the top above the ICU, but you'd lose too much space for food and clothing that way. (I don't take my 300mm with me when I'm travelling) I would not go smaller than the tilopa BC for what you need. It is already surprising small and the loka just would have been too tight of a fit leaving room for hardly anything extra, in which case, your paying a lot for just a photo backpack.

Anyways, my take is:

Get the Tilopa BC or the Satori.

Stay away from the Slope ICU with larger lenses. The inserts just don't work with larger lenses.

Take a look at a Medium Pro ICU with a Small Pro ICU. That way you can store your smaller lenses and bodies in the Medium and use the Small Pro ICU for your 300mm F2.8. (It will stack on top the Medium ICU in the Tilopa... Probably too tight in the Loka)





Oct 29, 2013 at 05:37 PM
phidong
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


What kind of stuff are you looking to carry survival-wise? I don't have a 300/2.8 so I can't really comment there but I have a Loka with Large ICU and there isn't a ton of space left over. There is room for rain+down jackets and maybe some food but other than that you're really pushing it.


Oct 29, 2013 at 05:46 PM
OwlsEyes
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Thanks to everyone who replied and apologies for taking so long to get back to this thread.

First to dgdg… I'm a former wildlife ecologist now biology teacher for 22 years. I struggle to get my clients to pay me for the work I do during the summer, so while I'd love to have an assistant, I think they'd need to pay me so that I can break even

Regarding my needs, I'm committed to my 300 f2.8 and won't leave home with out it. Much like my tripod, it's a burden I choose to carry. I live in MN and snow shoe with my gear, I travel to the back-country with a little pop-up trailer and take long day hikes 8 to 10 hours. While I do a bit of backpacking, the F-Stop bag wouldn't be used during those trips.

I'm planning a 21 day road trip through Utah, Arizona and Oregon during the summer of 2014. The trip is a photo trip and I will be doing quite a bit of hiking. In addition to the cameras, I'll want to carry day food, water, rain gear, first aid stuff, extra socks and light shoes while in the field. The following year I hope to spend 18 days in Iceland. While there I'll need to be able to stuff an extra jacket into my bag and possibly some crampons for the occasional hike on glaciers. Based on a review by Varina Patel, I thought the Loka might fit my needs.

I'll take a look at the posted links. If anyone has any other ideas, I'm all ears.
thanks and regards,
bruce



Oct 30, 2013 at 01:59 AM
sjms
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Loka with Large ICU and the 300/2.8 sideways top loaded in a kinesis bag built for the lens


Oct 30, 2013 at 10:28 PM
Charlie K.
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


I use a Tilopa BC with a large pro ICU and have very little room in the pack for other gear. My pack comes in at 38.8 pounds loaded and is very comfortable for long periods of hiking on uneven terrain. I would look for a used Monster ICU and a Satori to meet your needs for gear and extras. For airline travel I would remove the ICU and make that a carry on and check the bag with the extras as mentioned earlier.


Oct 30, 2013 at 11:31 PM
 

Search in Used Dept. 



mitesh
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Bruce,

I have the tilopa BC pack and XL ICU. What I have done when wanting to carry extras other than just photo gear is to remove the ICU and just use either neoprene lens pouches or a small messenger back camera insert. That way, the ICU isn't taking up all the space and you can figure out how to situate things to fit the way you want. On a recent trip to Europe, I took my 5d3, 24-70, 70-200, 17-40 and set of lee filters in the tilopa. In addition to the gear in the pack, I kept my wife's purse, sweaters for both of us, water bottle, and some snacks. Also had the RRS 34L tripod strapped on the back. No issues.



Oct 31, 2013 at 02:09 AM
MikeW
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


You can always hang clothing etc off the outside of the bag. I find I have little space left in an extra large pro icu with my lenses, body & filters. I stash food etc up top & use the bungy cords for tying down jackets etc. I also stick my tripod on the back & tie my jacket onto the top. Sleeping bag stuck on the side. The loka is great for flying, no problems with xtra large icu in small planes. I do want to buy a larger F-Stop for overnight duty though.


Oct 31, 2013 at 02:11 AM
OwlsEyes
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Thanks again to all who replied… I think I'll give the tilopa a look, though I was hoping for a single bag shooting/carry-on solution. I am so tired of camera bags that look like camera bags. While the Loka looks great if you've got some slimmer telephotos, it seems to fall short if you need/want to carry something larger than a 300 f4.0… bummer!

regards,
bruce



Nov 01, 2013 at 01:02 AM
killersnowman
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


ill add to my other thoughts that i have worn both the tilopa and the loka (i have the loka and my friend has the tilopa) and the harness on the loka fits me much much much better than the tilopa. fully loaded my loka can be around 25-30lbs and the harness transfers the weight perfectly to my hips. the tilopa did not do the same.

im 6ft with a 33 waist and a 31 inseem if that helps

i also strap a RRS TVC34L and BH55 to the outside of my pack




also here is a good thread that discusses both the loka and the tilopa
http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/941990/0



Nov 01, 2013 at 03:33 AM
dgdg
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Well the canon 600mm II will fit in the Loka with a xlarge pro icu. No hood. Certainly can fit a body and smaller lenses, extenders too. At that point it is solely a lens bag.


Nov 01, 2013 at 04:08 AM
Hardcore
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


I probably would have ended up with the Loka, but I carry my Macbook 15" retina and needed a spot to easily store it and the Tilopa fit that bill.


Nov 01, 2013 at 06:40 PM
m.sommers00
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


I have the Tolipa and small/large pro and medium slope. With the large in there, there is room for lunch and a jacket, and you can use the sleeve for water. It's tight though.

For some serious overnight stuff, I'd get the Satori EXP. The Tolipa could be a sufficient day hiker, and I use mine for that reason, but again it's a tight squeeze with the large in there.



Nov 10, 2013 at 04:17 AM
Andrew Wisler
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


I can't add a lot that hasn't already been said, except that there is a good review of the Loka over at Dan Carr's website that features quite a few images of the ICUs (3 sizes) loaded with gear similar to yours, including the 300 f/2.8, which might give you an idea how it all fits. Cheers.


Nov 17, 2013 at 06:45 PM
OwlsEyes
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · F-Stop Loka + 300mm f2.8 ?


Andrew Wisler wrote:
I can't add a lot that hasn't already been said, except that there is a good review of the Loka over at Dan Carr's website that features quite a few images of the ICUs (3 sizes) loaded with gear similar to yours, including the 300 f/2.8, which might give you an idea how it all fits. Cheers.


Thanks,
I have yet to pull the trigger on the bag as I would prefer not to have the Tilopa BC for the added size and weight. I'm also hoping to find a discount code for an FStop bad, as $425 is a lot to pay for a bag. Until I can decide, my ThinkTank StreetWalker Hard Drive continues to do the job. It's greatest limitation is the week waste belt and lack of space for a jacket, socks and hat.

I'll check out Dan Carr's video now.
regards,
bruce



Nov 17, 2013 at 07:10 PM





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