I received my Neat Freak earlier this week and spent some time Thursday night outfitting it. Overall it is a great bag...of course the construction is very well thought out and it is built like a TANK! The size (for me) is just right. Let me tell you the purpose of this bag for me, what I plan on carrying in it and then give you the layout inside.
I work in a corporate environment and carry a leathe briefcase in/out of the office everyday, but there are those things that I really want to have near me. Well, a backpack or similar would not really cut in that culture. I also have the evening/weekend outing wih the family when you never know what you will need or want to help take care of 2 young ones. SO - this is nice to carry the essentials of first aid, lights, multi-tools, wipes, kleenex, etc. So - this bag has fit that bill perfectly.* I have a bigger Maxpedition Pygmy Falcon for the all day outing to the zoo or small hike or etc, but this bag needed to be smaller than that.
So far the bag seems to be very comfortable to carry and I love the handle on the top. That makes for a nice way to carry to/from the house when throwing over the shoulder is not needed. It also look very unassuming when carrying it alongside the briefcase by the handle. If i threw it over the should - it would be a little too tactical for me.
The other application that I will use this for are those weekend trips that you are going to see family or friends and you need one small place to carry the items you never travel without. No matter where I am going overnight, I carry the tool, the knife, the light, small first aidkit, iPod, iPaq, etc. So - I had no easy way of carrying all of those items without packing them in the suitcase (which was not accessible enough in my opinion.) SO - this bag will (once again) fir that bill nicely.
Now - the contents:
Leatherman Charge's extra bits
Inova TL3 light
Chris Reeve Small Classic Sebenza
Atwood Imp in kydex
various Sharpie markers
a 20' hank of 550 cord
County Comm 1x3x2 clear plastic cases (3) filled with:
-band aids, neosporin, etc
-lighter, cable ties
A 7 day pill reminder filled with meds (you know that Sunday - Saturday pill boxes?)
20gig 4th Gen iPod
Super Glue pen
(going to add) Tide pen
and room to move around and find stuff.
The next thing to add (and will not be shown in the pics yet) is a custom kydex sheath for my:
Sebenza, TL3, Charge, Squirt, Fisher Space Pen and mini Bic lighter that DH is making for me - that will fit nicely inside the bag to keep everything there nice and neat and quickly mobile.
So - overall I give the bag 2 thumbs up!
I do NOT own a Spec Ops Pack Rat to compare, but if you are looking for a bag that could fit a similar "interim" calling, I think that you woul dbe pleased with the Maxpedition Neat Freak.
I DO want to stress that I am missing a few of my current EDC items as they are being carefully laid in Kydex by DH (over at edcforums.com) in a monster sheath (more on that later.) They are:
-Inova TL-3 light
-Small Classic Sebenza
-Fisher Telescoping Space Pen
-Mini bic lighter
So, all that being said - here are the views and some descriptions:
Main picture of the Neat Freak
Open - from the top
Contents - strewn all about
Some close ups of the small plastic cases
My "working man's EDC"
A close up of the "Levenger Folding pocket briefcase"
The backside of teh Neat Freak and it's various hook&loop features.