If you’ve seen our gear reviews, you know that I’m a big fan of portable safes. They are really functional items that you can use both when traveling and in your daily life. In fact, we’ve reviewed other popular portable safes in the past, and each has had its share of pros and cons. This time, we review the strongest one yet — the Loctote Flak Sack II.
The kind folks at Loctote sent us their latest bag called the Flak Sack II to test out and review. Keep in mind that even though they sent me this bag, this is not a paid review and we are not being influenced to evaluate the product in any way.
Loctote, which is a company based in Columbus, Ohio, was started after the founder, Don Halpern, experienced a scenario that a lot of travelers, including myself, worry about — being away from our valuables while swimming at the beach or at the pool, and not having a way to secure our stuff. In his case, his belongings were stolen at the beach while he was on vacation in the Caribbean. He basically set forth to find a better way to secure his belongings while traveling.
The company started as a successful Kickstarter campaign, and now offers several different drawstring bags. In addition to the Flak Sack II, they have a Sport version that is more lightweight, and a Coalition version that glows in the dark.
When you first look at the bag, you might think it’s just any other drawstring backpack. However, you’ll immediately notice that it’s so much more.
So, let’s walk through what makes this product so unique.
This bag is heavy duty. The bag uses a proprietary material called Flaknit, which Loctote developed with Honeywell. It offers an A9 level cut protection. Not to get too nerdy, but A9 is the highest level of cut (slash) protection, so it would require some heavy duty tools to cut through the fabric. The fabric reminds me of Kevlar, being extremely tough but also very flexible and comfortable. In fact, after researching Kevlar, I found out that the material used by Loctote is actually more cut-resistant. You can really feel the density of the material when holding it and when examining the fabric closely.
2. One-piece design:
To reduce vulnerabilities, the bag is designed from one piece, and are double reinforced with an ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene thread in the seams. This makes the bag very tough. You don’t need to worry about the bottom of the bag falling apart like you would with cheaper bags.
3. Stainless steel grommets and hardware:
The bag uses stainless steel grommets and a ring when securing the bag. Apparently, the first version of the bag used brass, which was already tough. But the company decided to make it even stronger by using stainless steel. Loctote is definitely obsessed with making a tough bag.
Another thing to point out is the lack of grommets on the rope attachment. This was actually done on purpose to ensure that the ropes don’t get worn out and strained at the bottom.
4. Internal pockets and organization:
Inside the bag, you’ll notice several pockets to carry a bunch of your gear. There’s nice fabric lining inside the bag, a locker loop for hanging the bag, a spring-loaded keychain carabiner, and an RFID-resistant pocket with fleece lining. The RFID pocket is also water resistant. I don’t think that RFID is a real threat (yet) for travelers, but it’s nice having the option in the bag.
Another nice touch is the zippers on the internal pocket. If you look closely, you’ll see that they are offer water resistance, which I’ve only ever seen on high-end water resistant wallets and bags from companies like Bellroy and Waterfield Designs.
5. Durable locking strap and lock:
The Flak Sack II has a double steel reinforced locking strap, which is separate from the shoulder ropes and is rated for 1,000 pounds of force. The bag also comes with a solid brass and steel three-number combination lock. Most times, companies will send you a cheaper lock and I usually recommend getting more heavy duty one. However, this lock is solid, and I appreciate the fact that Loctote didn’t try to cut corners when including a lock.
To lock the bag, simply pull the shoulder ropes tight, then pull on the locking strap until the stainless steel grommets are visible. Wrap the locking strap around an immovable or large object, then run the lock through the grommets and the steel ring. This creates a very tight enclosure and would require heavy-duty tools to remove it.
The bag also has a small pocket on the outside for the lock, which is very convenient.
6. Cut-resistant ropes:
One of the most common petty crimes when traveling is having a strap cut in order to steal a bag from you. The ropes on this bag are also made from the ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene material, making them extremely cut-resistant and strong. As a nice bonus, the straps are reflective to make you more visible in the dark.
7. Sternum strap:
The bag includes a nice sternum strap in the front. This helps to makes the bag much more comfortable when wearing it for extended periods of time, like when traveling or hiking.
8. Replacement parts:
Suppose you need a new lock or want to replace the rope strap. Loctote offers both items separately. You can even get the ropes in a different color if you prefer to change the look.
9. Discreet but good looking:
Despite all the incredible functionality offered by this bag, it remains a really good looking but discreet bag. It’s not a bag that’s going to draw a lot of attention to you, but it also doesn’t look like a portable safe, which is a good thing.
Some of you might be asking whether the bag would withstand bolt cutters or other heavy duty tools. To be honest, I think the bag would put up a good fight, but it’s not intended to withstand an arsenal of heavy tools. The bag is intended to block the everyday thief. These are people who are looking for the easiest target and are not going to try and break through durable materials. For this purpose, the bag is perfect.
The bag costs $150 and is available on the Loctote website or on Amazon. $150 is pricey, but I can honestly say that it’s an extremely high-quality product. As with a lot of items, you get what you pay for. In this case, you’re getting a quality bag that has the durability and strength of a portable safe, while also being a functional bag. The fact that Loctote doesn’t seem to “cut” any corners in their production or materials says a lot about their brand and dedication to their products.
Loctote’s motto is to create products that allow you to “live more and worry less.” I definitely think they live up to their slogan, and if you’re looking for a bag that functions as a portable safe, then I can easily recommend it. This is going to be my go-to travel bag the next time I head to the beach or pool.
Have you tried out the Loctote Flak Sack 2, or any of their other bags? If so, please share your experience below.