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L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle

Est. $35 to $110
Reviewed
September 2013
by ConsumerSearch
L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle, medium

Best duffel

Pros
  • Unconditional lifetime warranty
  • Lightweight
  • Durable, water-resistant fabric
Cons
  • Tips over

Bottom line

The L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle is made of water-resistant nylon in a wide assortment of colors and a few prints. Though this bag has few features, it is lightweight (just over 8 pounds for a large size) and is backed by an unconditional lifetime warranty. Users describe the bag as very durable and say the wheels roll smoothly, but many complain that it won't stand on its own -- it just tips over.

Features

A little organization, please. The L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle is a sturdy, no-frills bag with a quick-access zip pocket outside, but no internal pockets or internal compression straps. It does have external "security straps" -- compression straps -- to help secure the load. On the upside the bag opens wide for loading, and a combination of an internal toboggan-bottom frame, built-in wheels, telescope handle and top and bottom grab handles make it easy to move around. Users also love that when it's empty, this duffel is completely flat and easy to store.

Durability

Looks as good as new after a quick cleaning. Solid-color versions of the L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle are made of tough, lightweight nylon; print versions are made of polyester. Both are backed by L.L.Bean's unconditional lifetime warranty, and owners say the bags can stand up to quite a bit of abuse. "Just a great, tough, versatile piece of luggage for a great price," writes one woman at the L.L.Bean website. We did find one or two comments from long-time users who think the newer version of this bag might not be quite as sturdy as it used to be, but most are still pleased with it.

Appearance/style

It sure gets around. Reviewers say the L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle is easy to pack and easy to maneuver, and it holds a goodly amount of gear. However, quite a few are frustrated that the wheeled versions won't stand up on their own. We also found a few mixed comments about how well the wheels perform: Some say the duffel rolls very smoothly, while others complain that it tends to fishtail. The color and print varieties sometimes rotate over the years, with usually at least a dozen options. The Rolling Adventure Duffle is available in small (Est. $35), medium (Est. $90), large (Est. $100) and extra-large sizes (Est. $110) -- only the small size does not have wheels.

Our Sources: L.L.Bean Duffle Reviews

1. Wired

The author cites the L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle, size medium, as proof that you don't need to spend a lot to get a good piece of luggage. "Durable water-resistant nylon protects your crap from the elements," she writes, describing the shoulder strap and extra handles as "comfy" carry options if you don't want to roll it.

Review: Test: Freeway-Legal Scooters, Top HD Tuners, Tricked-Out Travel Mugs, Jen Trolio, Oct. 23, 2007

2. The Early Show

In this segment from CBS News' "The Early Show," Real Simple magazine editor Kris Connell names the L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle, medium, as the best duffel in the magazine's test of more than 100 carry-on bags. Connell says the bag is easy to maneuver and opens wide for easy packing.

Review: With These Bags, You Can Carry On, Ellen Crean, Feb. 11, 2009

3. LLBean.com

More than 470 users review the medium, large and extra-large versions of the L.L.Bean Rolling Adventure Duffle at L.L.Bean's website. They give the bags an overall score of 4.2 stars, with some frequent travelers declaring it the best piece of luggage they've ever owned -- although its soft-side construction is still vulnerable to being "trashed" by airlines. Some say it rolls smoothly, but others find it tends to fishtail. There are also complaints that the bag won't stand upright.

Review: Adventure Rolling Duffle, Large, Contributors to L.L.Bean, As of September 2013

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