Drive By :: Triple Aught Design Dispatch Bag
Outdoor enthusiast Trevor Knoll has no shortage of experience putting bags through their paces, so when it came to testing Triple Aught Design’s Dispatch Bag, we knew he was the man for the job…
“13 Liters of American Badassness”
MOLLE webbing, 1000D Cordura, padded laptop compartment, loads of pockets, and made in America, what more could one want in a messenger bag? All of these features come standard on the Dispatch Bag from Triple Aught Design. The search for the perfect EDC bag is a strenuous and daunting mission. Many get caught up in the cheap, flashy, feature-rich bags that drift away from everything a worthy EDC bag should be. Reliable, accessible, and built to last. A superior everyday bag is not just your normal chunk of nylon, it is an extension of yourself.
Who It Suits
The road warrior seeking the perfect mix between a tactical, sleek, and functional everyday messenger-style bag.
Who It Doesn’t
Anyone who does not want a more military-style bag.
First off, this pack is directed at anyone needing a one-strap carry option that strays away from the ordinary messenger-style bags, while keeping all of the must-have functions that make one-strap carrying admirable. Therefore, the strap is one of the most critical components of the bag. Fastening and loosening the strap is a breeze and it will stay exactly where you need it to. The strap can be cinched all the way up so that you can carry the bag messenger-style or loosened down to more of a briefcase carry option.
“Fastening and loosening the strap is a breeze and it will stay exactly where you need it to.”
Military grade materials + made in America = A true lifelong companion
Next, the Dispatch uses some of the best materials available including 1000D Invista Cordura, a 420D Nylon lining, Nexus ITW buckles, and YKK Nylon coil zippers. If you were intending to bring a shoulder bag to war with you, this is it. After a week of carrying the bag as my EDC, a few dog park trips and two different hikes, I have noticed zero fraying of the Cordura. All of the zippers glide effortlessly while the buckles are large enough to ensure your load-out is protected.
MOLLE webbing allows for more external organization and accessories
One may think the MOLLE on a bag like this looks out of place, however the practical applications that are available due to these little straps are great. Triple Aught Design sells many external pockets that can be attached to customize to your needs. Other than attaching pockets and pouches I found that the MOLLE on the side of the Dispatch is a match made in carry heaven when I want to use my Capture for my DSLR.
It’s hard for a bag nowadays to be a true EDC bag without having a dedicated padded laptop pocket. The Dispatch meets and exceeds this expectation. Towards the back of the main compartment the padded laptop sleeve sits secured by a heavy-duty Velcro strap. There is a bunker of padding on every side of the laptop sleeve, including the bottom of the slot making sure to protect your inter-web machine even when not so carefully setting the bag on the ground.
“Other than attaching pockets and pouches I found that the MOLLE on the side of the Dispatch is a match made in carry heaven when I want to use my Capture for my DSLR.”
On the outside rear of the laptop sleeve there is a zippered pocket that runs the length of the bag. The pocket is lined with military grade hook and loop Velcro that allows for the addition of a holster for quick and subtle concealed carry.
“There is a bunker of padding on every side of the laptop sleeve, including the bottom of the slot…”
Hiding on either side of the bag there are two zippered pockets that can be used to house a folding or fixed blade knife, flashlight, or any other item you would want separate from the main pocket for grabbing at a moment’s notice.
Plenty of organization for all of your gadgets
From first look the Dispatch Bag is as sleek yet rugged as can be. However, upon opening it you are greeted with a plethora of pockets for each and every one of your accessories. Hiding underneath the front flap there is a square pocket that can hold all of your quick-access items. On a normal day this pocket houses my keys, wallet, a few pens and pencils, my business cards and a knife. Above this pocket there is a zippered pouch that holds all my chargers, hard drives, and cords.
“From first look the Dispatch Bag is as sleek yet rugged as can be. However, upon opening it you are greeted with a plethora of pockets for each and every one of your accessories.”
Removable insert that will attach to the body of the bag
The next chunk of internal organization comes from the removable accessory sleeve that is stored using a Velcro strip on the main compartment in the bag. One full-length zipper runs across the top of the sleeve that can house binders, folders, or other documents. There are more pockets for pens and pencils along with a spot for an identity card, and a few more zippered and stash pouches for additional items.
“The next chunk of internal organization comes from the removable accessory sleeve that is stored using a Velcro strip on the main compartment in the bag.”
The 420D liner on the inside of the main compartment makes sliding items in and out a breeze, while standing up to daily wear and tear.
Ability to transform into a camera messenger bag
When the main compartment is empty the bag has the ability to morph into a great DSLR camera bag with the addition of a simple padded insert. I recently received a Mountainsmith Endeavor camera bag that came with a yellow padded insert which was just the right fit at 16″ long. Any other photo enthusiasts looking for a one-of-a-kind photo bag can pick up the right-sized padded camera insert from Amazon, stuff it in the Dispatch and score big time.
“When the main compartment is empty the bag has the ability to morph into a great DSLR camera bag with the addition of a simple padded insert.”
The Not So Good
The shoulder strap pad on the bag does a great job sliding to be positioned where the user needs it. However, when I’ve used this bag for a full day carry stuffed to the brim the pad can feel somewhat under-padded. A thicker pad would be a quick fix and much appreciated.
At a price point of $195, the Dispatch Bag does not come cheap. However, if you are truly in the market for a bag that will last a lifetime and more the price will be justified.
“At a price point of $195, the Dispatch Bag does not come cheap.”
Others to Consider
The GORUCK 15L Shoulder Bag has the same tactical look as the Dispatch and comes in at about half the price, currently on sale for $89. The Timbuk2 Classic Messenger Bag has many of the same functions but for those put off by the military presence of the Dispatch it offers more of an original messenger-style look and function. Lastly, if you are looking for another bag made with the same 1000D Cordura and by American hands with an array of bright fun colors look no further than the Topo Designs Commuter Briefcase.
“…when I’ve used this bag for a full day carry stuffed to the brim the [shoulder] pad can feel somewhat under-padded.”
I can safely say that the Triple Aught Design Dispatch Bag is one of the most well built and functional bags I have yet to review at RMK. From the impeccable attention to detail and functionality, to the top-of-the-line stitching and the bombproof build quality the Dispatch Bag will be a lifetime sidekick for whoever decides to pull the trigger.