I bought this bag for a deployment. Like many other reviews, the plastic backing between the two structural arms in the floor shattered. The wheels splay out and can't handle any weight. Where we go, there are a lot of rocks and that's one of the reasons why I bought the bag. The wheels are great, the fabric of the bag is great, the structure is awful. For the price- no way. I tried to figure out how to repair it- you can't and I can't bring myself to buy another one of these for the deployment in a month.
I bought this bag last year thinking that it was going to be the last rolling duffle I would need to buy. Not the case! On my flight home the corrugated plastic on the bottom shattered. Now it's there's no interior support and it's useless.
This lands right between my 2 day roller that fits in over heads and my full size roller (dive bag). I'm not as likely to over load it (75lb+) but you could depending on what all you load.
Only two things I note: The full length side pocket doesn't have a receiver for locking the zipper, and "some assembly required". It ships collapsed, and you'll need to install the two composite rods internal to the main cavity. It's not a show stopper, but it takes a few cuss words and a couple minutes you won't have if you are expecting to open the box, load out, and hit the road. You lose a lot of the quality features if you try to use it without the rods installed. So far, i've tested it against AA, UA, and SWA, with no issues. The first 2 are usually pretty destructive.
If you need to protect something internal from corner impacts, pack it appropriately. The sides are soft, and while the frame will protect against hitting a wall, there is not structure to protect it from the errant pelican case.
I used the SOMS last year for a holiday to the USA after which the plastic base had shattered. Not the end of the world - but when I used it for another holiday this year the wheels splayed outwards and dragging it around was almost impossible. To say this is "tough enough for any environment" is just marketing bullish*t.
Plenty of room. Heavy duty, well constructed. The Main compartment dividers & fiberglass rods that keep the bag square are awesome. No problems with it.
99% of the Airlines take this size bag.
Just weigh it before you go, Because there is enough room to go over the weight limit.
I was looking for bag to carry all of my gear I would need to bring to a range for my pistol permit classes. I searched high and low for a good month or so and then I decided that I would go with a 5.11 product. I was torn as to which bag it would be. I needed a bag to hold 4 or 5 pistols, 4 or 5 ammo bags, 12 pairs of hearing protection and 12 pairs of eye protection along with some miscellaneous items. Long story short, the SOMS 2.0 bag was the bag of my choice. I bought the bag through Amazon because they were the only ones who had it in stock at the time. I purchased the bag in Sandstone and I can't begin to tell you how happy I am with the bag. With my purchase of the SOMS 2.0, I also purchased (5) Ammo Mule Bags and (4) Pistol Bags all from 5.11. With the padded divider in that came with the bag, I was able to compartmentalize the eye and hearing protection from the rest of the items which are considerably heavier than these items. I managed to get everything into the SOMS 2.0 that I want to be able to have at the range, but more importantly everything is neat and organized in one bag. I don't have to carry 3 or 4 bags to accomplish what I have in one. The bag is well constructed. My first trip to the range yesterday proved that this is one tough bag. i was able to throw the bag in the bed of my truck and not have to worry. The wheels and extendable handle make this bag very easy to maneuver with a heavy load inside. Seriously, I don't know if you will find a better bag. One small down fault; I wish it came with more than one divider. I plan to call 5.11 and see if I can purchase an additional.
That's all it took, two long haul flights cave diving in Mexico, I took a grand total of three planes each way and rolled this bag down Gringo lane in Playa for transport to the caves. I had loaded around 28kg of equipment for this trip, usually I'd take closer to 40kg.
The first thing to go was that useless corrogated plastic backboard. shortly after that the wheels on the bag bowed on strange angles and now I'm looking at a bag that looks like it's been to hell. How 5.11 markets these bags for military use I have no idea. I purchased this because I thought it would be durable and reliable. 1 Star because I can't give it 0.5 of a star.
My first trip with this bag was a disaster. Trip enroute to the East coast, the retractable handle was damaged by the airline and had to manually release the handle up or down. Return trip from east coast, another airline managed to rip the side pockets open. When the bag was coming down the baggage belt, all of my belongings was scattered. I had owned the bag only 6 months and had to fight with 5.11 to replace the bag. Since I respond to emergencies, I am reluctant to use this bag in any harsh environment as it may not hold up to normal airline baggage handling.
I've used this bag multiple times on multiple trips on multiple flights over the past two years. I've beat it throwing it in and out of my PV or work vehicle. It's held up fantastic. It's at the max size limits you can take on a plane. It can hold so much I have to watch the 50 lb weight limit for flights. It was a bit spendy but the quality will last a long long time. My gf just drove with it in the back of a pickup from San Diego to Arizona during a monstrous rainstorm, it kept all of her clothing/items dry. I didn't expect it to. Awesome bag.
I am on a disaster response team and purchase the bag to handle everything that I need. I am able to pack everything. However while rolling it down the concourse, the tote handle slipped out of my hand. The short fall damaged the handle and will not allow you to release the it to raise or lower. On the return trip, one of the smaller pocket zipper came apart resulting in losing my electronic gear and 2 pairs of underwear was hanging out of the pocket.
I called 511 the first time about the handle issue and customer service did not seem to interested in either repairing or replacing the handle. Now I have a zipper proper that was damaged during regular airport handling. I would hate to see how the bag would hold up during rough conditions such as disaster or if one our military attempts to use it in a rougher environment. I am now concerned whether or not to trust this bag after its been tossed on a pallet and loaded on a cargo plane. Not so sure about recommending this bag to first responders.