I'm not back packing in the wilderness. I hope that doesn't disqualify me from asking a question that I think is still relevant for back-packers in general.

I have an MEI Travel Pack that I'm pretty happy with. I used it for a 1-month back packing trip through central Mexico last month. The main thing I don't like about it, is how cumbersome it is to adjust the straps on the exterior of the bag:

enter image description here

Getting these straps (there are two) tight takes a while. I have to loosen it by pulling the strap through, so there's some give between the buckle and the clasp (is that a proper term?). Then I close the bag, and tighten it, then work the strap through the clasp until it lies flat again (as pictured).

Is there a better mechanism I can use to make tightening this down much quicker, while keeping it secure? Removing the clasp would make tightening easy, but it wouldn't hold.

Is there some kind of clamp I can put in place of the clasp, that I could open when packing the bag, and close it down on the tightened strap to keep it secure during use?

  • I'm surprised the buckle won't hold without the clasp.
    – Ryley
    Commented May 11, 2012 at 18:18
  • The strap seems to slowly slip with identical buckles on the interior. But I'll try with that buckle and no clasp, as suggested in the answer below, and see how it works.
    – Flimzy
    Commented May 11, 2012 at 20:32

1 Answer 1


On a backpack, you'd have the quick-release buckle, but no clasp. The clasp is really doing two things - stopping the buckle loosening, and making it look tidy.

If the buckle is decent quality and condition it's unlikely to loosen much by itself in normal use. I'd just remove the clasp, and shorten the webbing as much as possible (which helps keep it tidy). Carefully melt the cut end of the webbing to stop it fraying.

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