Savotta Rucksack 323
The last of the Mohicans, or at least the last of proper old school framed canvas backpacks! Just like it was over 50 years ago the 323 from Savotta is still going strong, a classic design and outstanding quality.
Naturally this is much more than just a showpiece of quality and workmanship, the 323 is just as great today as it was back in the 1950's. In the beforetimes people didn't need a zillion little pockets and compartments for every little trinket imaginable, thus the 323 also has no such nonsense, it's simple: one large main compartment, two long side pouches and one wide pouch on the lower back. On the upper sides are attachment points for straps, used to attach a blanket or other heavy stuff.
The carrying system is just as old timey as the pack itself - simple adjustable leather shoulder straps and a horizontal strap which sits comfortably outstretched against your lower back.
The materials are classics: tough cotton canvas, super thick leather and steel!
Savotta makes these short movies, which are delightful to watch and might send you off to an imaginary trip to the woods. This one is a bit melancholic, but luckily also very short!
Made by Finn-Savotta Oy
Founded in 1955 Finn-Savotta, or just Savotta, is known for their simplistic and extremely rugged designs. For decades Savotta has been the go-to supplier of hiking gear for the Finnish civilian market and combat gear and tents for the defence forces.
Today Savotta operates two factories, one in Karstula, Finland, where they make all their tents and metal components and one in Estonia where they do about 50% of their sewing.
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Miguel d. 25.01.2018
Kari H. 17.04.2018
Luis M. 27.08.2018 (Edited 27.08.2018)
The side pockets perfectly fit a Nalgene-sized bottle or other container. It is a snug fit though, and while my 40 oz Kleen Kanteen fits well, I could not fit any of its nesting cups.
This is an old-school pack. As excellent as it is, it lacks many of the comforts and conveniences of modern packs. If you want added shoulder padding, get the TST sling pads. They fit perfectly over the pack's leather straps. https://www.varusteleka.com/en/product/sarma-tst-sling-pad/57746 It's also pretty easy to hack a waist belt onto the pack using various other components available here on Varusteleka.
I would have given it five stars, but the middle pocket tends to gap open a bit when the straps are secured. This could put small items at risk of falling out if you're not careful.
Farasha E. 22.08.2019
Now, the bad thing is quality control, and that is why I had to deduct 1.5 stars. My bag arrived with a defect, namely one of the turn buckles sewn on upside down. It didn't warrant a return, since I am capable enough of doing the repair, but it did necessitate cutting the strap, fixing the buckle orientation, then time spent stitching everything back up.