Posted March 4, 2019 in Gear Reviews by Jim Markel
Fans enjoy a tour of the Red Oxx Factory during Oxx Fest.
Red Oxx goes the extra mile sourcing the materials used in creating our gear. To show our support for other American manufacturers, the purchasing department’s priority is on acquiring product materials that are made in the U.S.A.. Red Oxx can now say with pride that over 96-97% of our product materials are now sourced from American-owned and operated companies. Some items, such as a few pieces of hardware, are simply currently not available from American manufacturers. But the minute we hear of an entrepreneur taking on that responsibility, we’ll be the first in line.
When you read up on our customer reviews, you’ll learn our customers frequently like to define our gear as "built like a tank". While obviously you’re not going to be toting around carry-on bags or personal items that weigh 50 tons and have three inches of armor plate, but for what it’s worth, the comparison is valid. For a soft sided carry-on bag or personal item Red Oxx bags are built tough. Starting with one of the most durable textile materials available – 1000 weight CORDURA® Brand nylon fabric, the bags are stitched together using a proprietary super strong UV resistant thread in every seam. Rugged, reliable and tough.
Places where two separate pieces of fabric are stitched together are "bound". A long piece of one inch wide nylon webbing is folded over the edges of the two pieces and they are stitched together. This creates a strong seam, or binding, that prevents the two pieces from unraveling on the inside of the bag. It also gives a clean and neat finished look both on the inside and when used on the outside of the bag; such as along the gusseted pocket lids on the Gator.
Inside edges typically receive the thinner nylon webbing, whereas outside corner edges that are exposed to wear will have a thicker nylon binding. All of our binding material is vertically woven to prevent fraying, peeling or splitting that you may commonly see in competitors bags that brag of “binding” their edges, providing they even commit to such quality.
Each stress point, such as where the handles attach to a bag, is double-box stitched – which is where we get the "double XX" in our name, Red OXX; a stitching practice we adapted from our military service as parachute riggers.
The reason Red Oxx uses some of the largest zippers available, the #5 and #10 YKK VISLON® zippers, is because:
Since they’re made of slick VISLON® vinyl, they will never rust or require lubing, unlike brass or other metal zippers.
Red Oxx has occasionally been accused of "overdoing" our hardware. But once you’ve had a cheap piece of imported plastic hardware break on your bag in the middle of a busy intersection, airport or other inconvenient locale, thereby dumping your precious belongings all over the ground for all the world to see (and steal), having a heavy-duty nickel-plated or stainless steel D-ring or attachment swivel that weighs just a tiny bit more, or might be a little "jingly", is a travel companion’s confidence builder and peace-of-mind maker. After all, you want to enjoy your journey as best you can. Why worry about having your Red Oxx bag break down?
All of our checked, carry-on, and briefcase bags, come standard with the famous fully adjustable Red Oxx Claw Shoulder Strap which will not slip. Or carry your bag one handed using the wraparound handle handclasp. Recently Red Oxx developed a new strap designed for comfort carry, the Long Hauler strap, available for additional purchase.
Be sure to sign up for our Red Oxx Field Report email Newsletter to stay up to date about events such as Oxx Fest, new gear, Special Edition seasonal colors, Red Eye Collective limited edition prototype bags, helpful packing videos, fun travel stories, and more.