Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Review

The Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack’s simple single-compartment design doesn’t preclude it from having robust build quality, so it’s simple and substantial.

Our Verdict

7.4 /10
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  • Long key leash can reach locks with relative ease
  • Single-compartment layout means you only have to manage one space
  • Materials and build quality feel robust


  • Key leash can get in the way if not tucked in mesh pocket
  • Gear slides to one side when worn across the chest and not fully packed
  • There’s only one compartment with minimal organization

Technical Details

100 %

Carry-on Compliance

View 145/145 Airlines

62 %

Like the Look

Polled on Instagram

  • Capacity


  • Weight (lb)

    0.44 lb (0.2 kg)

  • Dimensions

    11.2 in x 3.94 in x 2.48 in (28.4 x 10 x 6.3 cm)

  • Notable Materials

    Recycled Nylon, Recycled Polyester

  • Warranty Information

    Lifetime Warranty Repair

Buying Options

Timbuk2 Logo
Amazon Logo

Full Review

More often than not, going for a basic sling comes with the caveat of quality: thin fabrics, shoddy hardware, and an uncomfortable carry. You’ll have to shell out more for better quality, but better slings usually come with a lot of bells and whistles; too much if you’re just looking for something simple.

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Waist Pack
Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack | Simple yet substantial.

Meet the Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack. Not only does it feel robust, but it’s also made out of recycled fabric. Its main strength is its simple design, with just one compartment, a single strap, and a no-nonsense shape. Those looking for a mile-long list of features may want to look elsewhere. However, if it’s quality and simplicity you’re after, keep reading our review and see if this is the right sling for you.

External Components

The exterior of the Slacker Chest Pack looks more or less like any other sling. From the shape, size, and color, it doesn’t really stand out from the crowd, which is typical for Timbuk2. It’s a brand whose styling usually doesn’t break the mold. Instead, it leans into the inconspicuous and stealthy. That’s not a bad thing, per se, especially if you’re looking for a sling that won’t draw unnecessary attention.

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Brand
Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack | The loop with the logo feels thick.

Besides, there’s something arguably more important to set the Slacker Chest Pack apart: 100% recycled nylon and polyester fabric. Yes, using recycled materials is not uncommon, but it’s not totally ubiquitous either. They’re made from both pre- and post-consumer materials, so you can be confident that you’re wearing a sling targeting both ends of the pipeline. What’s more, the Slacker Chest Pack doesn’t feel any less durable despite using recycled materials.

The nylon fabric feels durable, particularly at the base, where it feels notably heavier than the rest. This makes sense since it’s the part that will make contact on surfaces most of the time. The YKK zipper and its chunky track also feel similarly beefy, and the zippers are paired with paracord pulls tipped with plastic casings to make them easier to grip. If we’re nitpicking, we’d say that the plastic tips are excessive, given the emphasis on being earth-friendly.

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Buckle
Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack | The strap and hardware used all feel robust.

At the front is Timbuk2’s logo, and it also doubles as a loop where you can attach tiny accessories like a bike light. While we’d usually stop and move on to the next feature, we should give kudos to Timbuk2. Whereas other brands would’ve been content with a simple ribbon-like loop tacked to the front, the one on the Slacker Chest Pack is thick and substantial. If we did put a bike light here, we wouldn’t worry about it falling off because of weak stitching.

The Slacker Chest Pack’s strap feels similarly robust. It’s a simple strap that’s parallel to the pack itself. For hardware, it has an adjuster in the middle and a buckle on the right side (if you’re wearing the pack). The buckle is quite large, but you’ll barely feel it press onto you since it’s directly beside the sling. The strap itself is relatively wide but very soft, so it doesn’t feel abrasive against bare skin. Moreover, it’s also smooth enough that feeding it through the adjuster isn’t a hassle.

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Harness System
Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack | Nice to see they didn’t skimp out on the back panel.

Complementing the robust strap is a proper back panel. Yes, it’s not just plain fabric; there is actual padding and mesh, which is more than what you can say about other slings/waist packs. The question is, does it actually help with comfort?

Fit Notes

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Side By Side
Left: Lauren Maternowski, Height: 5’6” (168 cm), Torso: 16.5” (42 cm) | Right: Eric Hergenreder, Height: 6’0″ (183 cm), Torso: 18.5” (47 cm)

The answer is yes. Comfort is quite good whether you wear the Slacker Chest Pack as a sling or waist pack. It definitely feels more at home across the chest as a sling because the relatively soft structure lets the shape conform to your body wherever you position it. Of course, the padded mesh back panel helps ensure it rests gently against you.

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Strap
Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack | It’s both comfortable and easy to move around.

A key observation we have about the Slacker Chest Pack is that it’s very easy to handle. You can switch from waist pack to sling mode very quickly and vice versa, and the same goes for moving the strap from shoulder to shoulder or front to back. It’s the strap’s simplicity and ease of adjustment that enable this, and we like it.

Inside The Sling

On the other hand, users may find the Slacker Chest Pack a bit too minimal when it comes to pockets. Simply put, there are no secondary pockets. It only has a main compartment, and that’s it. The closest thing to secondary storage it has is the front loop. So, if you want multiple pockets, you may want to look elsewhere. On the other hand, this main compartment-only approach is preferable if you like managing one compartment without thinking too much about organizing.

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Empty
Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack | It only has one compartment, and it’s this one.

The main compartment opens in a crescent shape, giving you a wide view of the interior. A bright gray liner and a relatively shallow floor aid visibility, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble sorting through all the gear you throw inside. All of this is greatly helpful since you can fit a ton of gear in this two-liter sling.

The interior is quite roomy, even for a two-liter sling. That said, since that volume is spread out into a banana shape, packing it will require some level of strategizing. Specifically, you have to layer items back to front, with the lengthier gear sitting at the back and the shorter ones in front. Fortunately, most of the things we put inside are long and thin, like a wallet, smartphone, packet of wet wipes, and medium-sized power bank.

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Stuffed
Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack | Layering gear front to back is the key to maximizing the space inside.

Unfortunately, we did not fully pack the main compartment most of the time, with a negative side effect: all of the gear inside slid towards one side since we wore the sling across the chest. One solution is to pack more gear than needed so that there’s no room for anything to move around. Needless to say, it’s not a good solution for those trying to minimize the number of items they bring. The good news is that there’s a stretchy mesh pocket at the back where you can put smaller accessories, and it does a good job stopping half the gear inside from tumbling around.

Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack Key Leash
Timbuk2 Slacker Chest Pack | We really like how long this key leash is.

There’s also a built-in key leash that you can use to keep track of your keys. It has a rather long leash, which we like since it lets us unlock doors without detaching a key each time. However, with a leash this long, it’s necessary to store the entire length in the mesh pocket; otherwise, it can get in the way of other items.

Usage Timeline

Initial Usage

Condition: Excellent

  • Digging the banana-like shape
  • A bit large, but the somewhat shallow design lays nicely for a slimmer fit
  • We like the bright accents inside
2 Weeks of Use

Condition: Excellent

  • Gear easily falls to one side when in sling mode
  • Super comfortable in any of the carry positions
  • Pretty roomy for 2 liters
By Lauren Maternowski
Created June 28, 2023 • Updated June 28, 2023
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