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ROLLING THUNDER - LARGE
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ROLLING THUNDER - LARGE

4.5 7 Reviews

Color

- TNF BLACK

Size

- L
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In Store Availability

STORES - Available as of July 31, 2015 11:59:22 PM EDT

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Details

Intimidating other bags on the luggage carousel, you can't get much bigger, or badder, than the Rolling Thunder. Capacity to haul a serious amount of gear, this multi-purpose duffel features reinforced in-line skate wheels and a go-cart frame with aluminum chassis for structural support. Made from the same fabric that's used to haul gear in high-alpine expeditions, this rolling duffel bag is practically invincible.

Features

  • Protective skid rails
  • Bottom-, top- and side-carry handles
  • Business card window on top
  • G-cart frame with aluminum chassis for structure and reinforcement
  • End pocket fits passport/airline tickets
  • Durable custom wheels and wheel housing
  • Large main compartment with internal compression straps and zippered mesh pocket
  • Separate end compartment with internal padded sleeve and zippered mesh pocket
  • *Gift box not available for this item

Product Specifications

Style:
ARLY
Avg Weight:
11 lbs 10 oz (5275 g)
Dimensions:
31.5" x 16" x 14" (80 cm x 41 cm x 36 cm)
Fabric:
phthalate-free TPE fabric laminate, 840D Jr. ballistics nylon
Volume:
7325 in³ (120 liters)
Source:
Imported

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REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
 
4.7

(based on 7 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (5)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

100%

of reviewers recommend this product.

Reviewed by 7 customers

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Displaying reviews 1-7

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(7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Have had 2 of these already and mulling options.

By 

from New Orleans

Site Member

Pros

  • long straps can piggy back a second bag.
  • telescoping handle is not necessary.
  • Waterproof

Cons

    Best Uses

      I've had two of these (earlier models) and contemplating another. It seems like there have been some slight variations year-to-year. The first was purchased in 2011, and the second was acquired in a swap for the first-- the second version being slightly smaller and included a ripstop nylon handle system that was integrated into the bottom of the bag (a nice feature) and a telescoping handle. The second one might have been a medium size, but not the same one currently being sold.

      Overall, it's a great bag especially if you "travel heavy"-- lots of gear, harsh environments, etc. I work offshore, so the vinyl material is perfect for schlepping on and off crewboats, splash, etc.

      Previous comments about weight are completely valid-- air travel is all about weight these days, and at about 10 lbs, this bag eats up 20% of the standard US baggage limit. It's easy to go over the 50 lb. limit and my first one looked practically anemic at times in order to meet the 50 lb. requirement-- I think this has been addressed by making the Large a bit smaller dimensions, but not sure about this. The lack of a telescoping handle is fine (saves weight) as the bag is long enough that ergonomically the side handles work fine for this purpose.

      As an aside, my most recent Rolling Thunder (which did have a telescoping handle) finally met its end when apparently it was handled by the airline using the handle (not suitable for lifting!) and ripped the assembly from the bag. I notice some bags on the market have a zippered cover which hides the handle away and I would definitely look for this feature on any bag with a telescoping handle.

      But back to this particular Rolling Thunder model... All of the extra handles (all around 4 sides) are great for handling, but annoying that there is no "main" handle in order to pick it up one-handed so it is awkward in this position. (the version with the ripstop nylon handle flaps was perfect and I replaced the velcro thingy with a No. 2 brass snap hook to hold them together.). Also the extra long compression straps allow another piece of luggage such as a small or medium sized duffel to be "piggybacked" on top, which is how I like to, um, roll. (so the Rolling Thunder becomes a caddy for the second bag.) The drawback is that the Rolling Thunder itself isn't strong (rigid) enough in between the wheels to support the entire load-- the result is that it will sag, wear along the ground and get damaged as well as the wheels and mounts start to wear out and tear away from the bag.

      This already great bag would benefit from an improved chassis (the plastic "skeleton" and wheel mounts- including removable/ changeable wheels as some other manufacturers are featuring; can accept replacement wheels from a skate shop.)

      All that being said, the Rolling Thunder is still at the top of my list and I'll probably buy another.

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Outstanding

      By 

      from Valdosta, GA

      Site Member

      Well made and very sturdy. Better than I expected.

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      I love this bag!

      By 

      from Undisclosed

      Site Member

      I was a little about some of the reviews. Didn't want to spend $300 on a bag And have it get torn up right away but I took a chance and I love it. Its very stylish, lots and lots of room for all my clothes. Well worth what I paid. Will be getting the rest of the collection soon.

      (6 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      My Expedition Bag

      By 

      from Hong Kong & USA

      Site Member

      Pros

      • Durable
      • Rolls well
      • Spacious
      • Water Resistant

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Climbing
        • Hiking
        • Training

        This bag is like a sledge hammer to steel spikes - it gets the job done in a big way. I'm a climbing guide, an airline pilot, and an Air Force Reservist. I travel at least once a month. I have packed it full of climbing ropes, cams, stoppers, quickdraws, carabiners, grigri, harness, helmet, tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, trekking poles, stove, mess kit, 2 decks of cards, and it all fits. Keep in mind, when I travel, it's either business class with a 75lb limit, or i'm on orders, so my limit is 100 lbs. Yes, 100 lbs. Last time I traveled with this, it was 75lbs. It's an incredible bag. Rolls well, even when fully loaded. It can take a beating. The outer TPE laminate provides good weather resistance. While the weatherproofing might take a few (expected) cuts and scrapes, i anticipate the ballistic material underneath will hold up well.

        For airline travel, I wouldn't go any bigger. You can easily over load with this one if you are carrying dense equipment, especially in economy. Personally, I wouldn't go any smaller either. It's just right. At 11-12 lbs, its 1/2 the weight of my old TravelPro suitcase that was *almost* comparable in size, and is similar to other rolling duffels of similar size. The grab handles are excellent, and if you need to grab on top, just use the two buckled straps, they're strong enough to tug on. The main compartment zipper is adequate enough that you can cram that last bit of clothing or gear inside with confidence. If you're going on expeditions where you will be packing in on horses or burrows, you may want to consider getting the Base Camp Duffel instead since this one has an aluminum frame sheet on the base that could make it a little harder to pack on a mule.

        My only gripe: The zipper on the smaller compartment is no good (I had other choice words for it, but TNF said I had inappropriate words in my post). Even when brand new, it wasn't very smooth, and the elements have jammed several times while closing up the compartment. It's just too small for the job. In spite of being used for a smaller compartment, TNF should have utilized the same guage zipper as the main compartment. (It wouldn't hurt one bit to use 1 size larger for the main compartment zipper as well.)

        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Moves Well

        By 

        from NNew York

        Site Member

        Perfect Bag for when you personally are responsible for the movement of your Luggage.
        worked out well on a Thailand trip with many moves to less than 4 star accommodations!!

        (16 of 16 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        I Love This Monster of a Bag: Fits Everything!

        By 

        from Hollywood, California

        Site Member

        Pros

        • constant compliments!
        • fits everything!
        • huge!

        Cons

          Best Uses

            What a great find!

            It fills a void in my luggage wardrobe that no other piece of luggage can match. Taking up less surface space on the ground, narrow, and fits more.

            This is the largest, or one of the largest travel bags on wheels that you will find that the airlines will allow you to check in without an oversize charge.

            How much can you put in it? How does it roll? How heavy? When I first got it, I conducted a number of tests to see if this is a keeper.

            What I did is haul out a bunch of clothing, piled it in, weighed it, and took off to wheel it around the house and block. So you can see in the photo, I put in 11 Pairs of heavy men's Jeans (never would I travel with so much), 20 T-shirts, 8 Long Sleeve Shirts, 4 Sweaters, 1 Fleece Jacket, and 1 pair of shoes (not shown). I used my luggage scale to weigh the bag empty: 12 lbs 2 oz, and with all the above in it: 47.6 lbs. There was so much extra space--you could have fit another 15+ lbs in there but I did not want to exceed the 50 limit. Women's clothes are lighter and women can fit a lot more in than men I have seen. Feel a need to travel with your down comforter and pillow????no problem???it will fit.

            If I was car traveling--I would have been able to take everything I wanted from my attire without thinking if it would fit. I would use this bag if just for a weekend???just put in what you think you may need and sort it out later???no hassle???easy packing???it will fit. When in doubt???pack it in the Rolling Thunder.

            Maneuverability: I am 5'10" and the handle height of the bag and angle was fine for my height and it was easy to pull on carpet in the house, airport, as well as on the sidewalk. You need to test it yourself. I was able to also simultaneously roll a carry-on in my other hand no problem. The Rolling Thunder is more stable than my suitcases, does not tip back and forth, and fits in narrow passages. It is also easier to pick up to put in cars than a suitcase, and because it's soft you won't get scrapped or bruised if you bump it. Because the pull handle is soft, pulling it is a lot easier than pushing it???plan to pull it mainly.

            It does not have a stiff retractable handle assembly which would take up packing space inside, and add more weight, defeating the usefulness of the bag.

            Weight: Buy a luggage scale if you are buying this bag! It is easy to go over the 50 lb limit if you fill it. Don't do it! Even the kindest airlines with free bag allowance will hammer you with fees if you go over 50 lb. It's cheaper to check in a 2nd bag than go over weight. But really, this bag allows you to not have to worry if everything will fit in your bag--it will!

            Another great benefit of this bag is that because it does not open like a clamshell suitcase, it's easy to fit in small spaces and access your stuff. I can't tell you the many times I had to keep moving my other suitcases around hotel rooms or a friend's guestroom to find space to open them and then re-packing each side is a pain. And you can easily see everything in one area. It fits well on the hotel room luggage stand as well as in the truck of a compact car with other luggage. Hoist it by any two of the 4 side handles into the trunk or back seat--easy.

            It seems well made, but time will tell how the material holds up.
            The bag material seems like it would repel water but I did not test that.
            It has an attractive silky red lining that protects your stuff.
            It also has a few zippered areas including a padded compartment.
            The 2 main compartments have zippers that come together and you can lock.(Buy a lock)
            Not too many people have such a bag yet so it's easy to recognize on the airport baggage carousel???no one will mess with Rolling Thunder.

            And best of all--you look plain cool with this piece--like you are going on a major expedition--even if it is just to Vegas.

            I would check it out, especially if you are like me and like to take everything on the road.

            (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Almost Perfect

            By 

            from Northern California

            Site Member

            Pros

            • Waterproof

            Cons

              Best Uses

                I travel constantly. This bag is in the back of my truck exposed to the elements and so far its kept all my stuff dry and safe. I've flown with it a few times and its held up really well. The only complaint I have is that some sort of divider on the inside tore. I can probably send this back to North Face and they'll fix it.

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