Crumpler Old Banger duffel bag review

The Crumpler “Old Banger” duffel bag is the duffel bag you pick if you need two things – a good looking bag, and a duffel that’ll survive pretty much anything you throw at it.

On the outside, the bag isn’t really all that special – but it is how it is made that really matters with this bag. Crumpler built this bag around the best possible materials – 900D water resistant fabric on the outside, and 150D ripstop on the inside. All zippers are “self healing”, which means they’ll actually realign themselves if something gets stuck.

All the stitching is “bartack stitching” which makes every seam extremely strong. In addition to this, some portions feature triple stitching. The end result is an amazingly sturdy bag – with good looks to match.

The carrying handles are neoprene cushioned, so even when you stuff it full of your travel items, it won’t hurt your hands (too much). On the sides are additional carrying handles – making it easy to pull out of an overhead storage bin. It does lack shoulder straps, but the carrying handles are long enough to be used on your shoulder or even as a backpack.

The outside is decorated with the Crumpler logo – and the bag itself is available in green/orange and blue/green color combinations. Like another of my favorite bags, I love the bright inner color on the Old Banger – perhaps i’m just weird, but I love wacky and bright colors on my bags. In addition to this, the bright inside also makes it easier to find things in the dark.

The Old Banger features 2 additional pockets – one on the outside (with an integrated key ring/strap) and one on the inside. All zippers feature oversized pull tabs. Despite the high quality materials and stitching, Crumpler managed to keep the bag to a mere 1.87 lbs (0.85kg). To test the inner storage space I took a quick unscientific approach – I moved the contents of my fully loaded 22″ roller into the Old Banger – and was able to pack it with ease (and close the zippers). In a day and age where gate agents are on the lookout for heavy looking bags, a duffel is probably going to pass their strict looks easier than an overweight rolling case.

The Crumpler Old Banger comes with a lifetime warranty – but it obviously only covers defects in workmanship, not wear and tear. The lifetime warranty only applies to the original owner of the product.

All in all, a well designed piece of quality luggage – at $105 it is most certainly not a cheap duffel bag, but if you treat your luggage as rough as I do, an investment in something better than a $10 drugstore duffel is a must. You’ll find the Crumpler Old Banger over at their US site, or through their global store finder.