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Help Finding Lighter Aluminum Stays for Pack


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  • #1329015
    Valerie E
    BPL Member

    @wildtowner

    Locale: Grand Canyon State

    I'm almost finished a MYOG X-Pac backpack capable of heavy hauling. Finished pack weight is a bit heavy, though, at 3lb 2.5oz, with 2 aluminum shaped stays.

    The stays I have are rated for up to 50lbs and weigh 6oz for the pair; that's overkill because I can't carry 50lbs!

    I know nothing (NOTHING!) about metal, but surely I could get something lighter that would be good up to 40lbs (my worst-case scenario for water caching)? Any new stay must fit the current stay pockets on the pack.

    What (if anything) could I get that would significantly reduce the weight of the stays, while keeping the "hauling" ability? And just as importantly — WHERE would I source these? Edited to add — I would need something "ready to go" because I also have no tools for metal fabrication.

    A photo of one of the current stays [22" long (following the curvature) and 1" wide]
    x

    #2200440
    David Chenault
    BPL Member

    @davec

    Locale: Queen City, MT

    Onlinemetals.com

    You can order aluminum sheet/plate in custom widths for a given thickness. 1/8" by 1/2" 7075-T6 would probably get the job done.

    #2200443
    Valerie E
    BPL Member

    @wildtowner

    Locale: Grand Canyon State

    Before I order… can I bend 7075-T6 aluminum without any special tools (I'm thinking knee/shins)?

    #2200459
    David Chenault
    BPL Member

    @davec

    Locale: Queen City, MT

    In 1/8" thickness, yes.

    #2200554
    Roger Caffin
    BPL Member

    @rcaffin

    Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe

    > can I bend 7075-T6 aluminum without any special tools
    Yes for T6, but distribute the bend! Curve it over something large.

    Now T9, as Easton uses – that's harder, but still possible.

    Cheers

    #2200560
    Valerie E
    BPL Member

    @wildtowner

    Locale: Grand Canyon State

    Thanks Dave — I ordered 2 stay-sized pieces of "bare" 7075-T6.

    And Roger, thank you for the hint about gently *curving* it. Knowing nothing about a subject means that I need the "guide for dummies". No such thing as "too obvious" here (sad to say).

    #2200712
    David Chenault
    BPL Member

    @davec

    Locale: Queen City, MT

    A rounded railing or particularly rigid chair arm works.

    #2200876
    Paul McLaughlin
    BPL Member

    @paul-1

    I see you already ordered 1/2" wide stock for stays. There is another way to get skinnier stock, which I have used – I cut them lengthwise. Mostly have done this to get stays skinnier than I could buy, 1/2" being then arrest I hve found. ,I cut 3 out of a 1" stay so I have 5/16" wide stays for my summer packs.

    #2201000
    [ Drew ]
    BPL Member

    @43ten

    Locale: Central Valley CA

    Did you sew loops for the stays to slide into, or is there more of a rectangular pocket similar to how Gossamer Gear and Granite Gear use for their stays?

    If it's the latter, you could order a stay from Gossamer Gear and try it out. I thought that their price + shipping was too much, so I ended up making a very similar one out of 1/4" (I think) aluminum rod from Lowes. Mine was around 3.5oz and $5 I believe. The flat style stays you're making may be the better option, but the rod style ones are another option if needed.

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