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Upffront 2020 Foredeck Club SW LEADERBOARD




Stacking Bags from Outils Oceans are the number one below deck stowage solution for offshore racers

by Calanach Finlayson 3 Jun 01:00 PDT
Stacking Bags from Outils Oceans © upffront.com

In this article we take a brief look at why French manufacturer Outils Oceans are the number one below deck stowage solution for offshore race yachts. How many can you count in the above image taken on board 11th Hour Racing during The Ocean Race?

For us it comes down to these two words. From fenders to winch handle pockets to tool bags, Outils Oceans have made a name for themselves by producing innovative, hard-waring and simple products. The stacking bags are no exception.

The base and sides are formed by a single piece of stiff plastic bent upwards to meet the lid. This is what gives the bag its structure and shape. A heavy-duty tarpaulin forms the ends and lid which has a full width opening with robust plastic zippers that aren't subject to corrosion, followed by a Velcro strip. The carry handles are simple pieces of cord which are designed just for moving the bags around inside the boat rather than lugging across long distances.

A nice little detail is the clear plastic document pocket on the end of the bag for itemising the contents.

The stack bag is available in two standard sizes:
Matos60 (47L) - L60 x H28 x W28 cm
Matos70 (72L) - L70 x H32 x W32 cm

In addition, an internal division pocket can be added to further compartmentalise the space.

With its cuboid form, the stacking bag is something halfway between a box and a bag. A flat base and square corners allows for efficient internal packing while the stiff sides provide some protection to the contents from being crushed. Unlike a box, the stack bags can be folded flat when not in use and aren't at risk of cracking when thrown around.

The square form and rigid structure means the stack bags can be stowed tightly side by side or on top of one another without wasting space. This partly explains their popularity in offshore classes such as Figaro, IMOCA and Class 40 where moveable weight can be shifted from side to side on every tack. For this laboursome task, you want to pack everything into as few manageable sized units as possible.

For other racing classes where stacking is not permitted, the stack bags still offer great utility for stowing domestic items, spares, or even an anchor. The same applies to blue water cruisers needing additional storage space for longer voyages.

In summary:

  • A durable, stackable storage bag
  • The hard plastic sides allow for stacking without crushing the contents
  • These are the go-to for the French offshore race fleets
  • Also a superb option for handicap racers and cruisers who aren't stacking

Stacking Bags From Outils Oceans

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