For a while now I’ve been intending to move away from having an all-inclusive, wheeled boardbag (e.g. Burton Wheelie Locker), to using two pieces of luggage: a regular case plus a smaller board bag.
I’ve now completed the transition, pairing a Dakine Tour Bag with a Dakine Split Convertible. Despite having more first hand experience with Burton luggage products, and being impressed, I opted for Dakine for 3 reasons: 1. price, 2. availability/choice and 3. confidence in their products.
The Tour Bag is considerably smaller than the Wheelie Locker, but as you can see, it still holds a lot of stuff. In the picture above I’ve got my board and bindings, my boots, my lid, snowboard pants and jacket, some impact shorts, a change of street clothes and a few other smaller things like socks. This is going to let me keep bulkier items out of the case as well as distributing the weight – think airport weight limits and their cost structure for extra bags.
The Tour Bag
The Tour Bag is well padded so your board is going to be safe. Plus there are separate compartments for boots and bindings – though you can use them for whatever you want. These separate pockets have waterproof lining, so they’re good for anything that’s wet and needs packing.
The smaller size (and cost) means no wheels – but I reckon these are designed to be used in addition to another case (most likely wheeled), so the shoulder strap fits well – wheeling two items can be tricky. It’s going to be in the region of 10 – 15kg, so carrying over the shoulder shouldn’t be a problem.
The Split Convertible
The Split Convertible is one of the larger cases available at 120L. I’d have been just as happy with the more common Split Roller, but I was able to pick mine up in a sale, which made the change worth while.
As it happens though, the convertible design is actually quite handy. Both sections can be used separately, so you can down-size to a smaller setup; although I’d say it’s more practical to use the bottom one, as it has the wheels and the handle. If you’re using the bag in it’s completeness, I’d say it’s unlikely that you’d ever want to split it up at the airport so that you can check in two separate bags, as per the Dakine blurb. However, you might find splitting it up handy for squeezing into a restricted space, like a small car for example…
The bottom part of the bag is a single, large compartment. The top bag, as shown above is split into three main compartments, plus the two sticking up on the top; all good for organising your gear.
My one question is the coupling of the two separate bags; they are joined with 4 large clips/straps. Although I haven’t used the case in earnest yet, say, taking it through an airport, it does feel sturdy and durable. I don’t anticipate any problems and I’ll report on this after the first proper use.
Price: 2 bags vs. 1
Personally I much prefer the flexibility of a case and board bag vs. one large wheeled board bag – but does it cost more? I’ve only owned one of the large do-it-all board bags, the Burton Wheelie Locker, so I’ll compare the price of two separate bags against that. The Wheelie Locker retails at around £170. The Tour Bag sells at £40 and the Split Roller 120L at £100 – making the pair £140. If you want the Split Convertible specifically, it’s another £30, I think, which is quite a bit more: I’d recommend sticking with the roller as I’m not sure the convertible design is worth it.
Those are full prices though. One of the great things about getting a Dakine bag is that there are plenty of them around. Do a quick search on google and you’re almost certain to find one in the sale. I got my Tour Bag for £28 and the Split Convertible for £80 – so a pretty good deal!
If you’re looking online, Dogfunk has a good selection of Dakine Luggage, including the Split Convertible. If you’re in the UK or mainland Europe – then Blue Tomato has loads of Dakine snowboard luggage!