Greenroom136 Metrodrifter: Review

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Greenroom136 is a small bag maker based in Malaysia and sells bags all over the world, from the US to Europe to Asia. They’re known for building quality bags in their small shop by hand, with relatively inexpensive or free international shipping, which attracts a global customer base.

The Metrodrifter is a small 5.5 L sling style bag made by Greenroom136. The bag feels like a mini version of their Bootstrap messenger bag more so than a something like the Metromonger.

Tech Specs

MetricImperial
Length25 cm10 in
Width16 cm6.3 in
Height10 cm4 in
Capacity5 L305 cu in
Weight600 g1 lb 5 oz

Author’s Note: Greenroom136 listed the capacity at 6.5L on their website, but 5L on the label. Rough calculation arrives at closer to 5.5 L, but bag capacity measurement is never an exact science.

Quality and Comfort

With 1000D Cordura nylon on the outside, 420D ripstop on the inside, beefy shoulder strap, YKK zippers and buckets, this bag is built like a tank. Being a small bag, the comfort factor is entirely based on how well the bag carries on body. I found the removable shoulder strap pad unnecessary. With just the 2 inch safety belt shoulder strap, it easily distributes the bag’s weight on my shoulder. Note that the strap is not reversible. The buckle is on the right side, so the bag feels more maneuverable if carried on the left shoulder allowing me to unbuckle the strap on the lower right side.

Greenroom136 Metrodrifter front of bag

The Metrodrifter echos the design of the other Greenroom136 single strap bags. The should strap is attached to wings in the back of the bag at an angle so that it is optimized for on the back messenger style carry. Being a smaller and lighter bag, I can still carry it over my shoulder on my side. You can also carry it as a hip bag.

Greenroom136 Metrodrifter wearing on back

For their larger bags, the way the main strap attaches to the bag is what distinguishes between the Junkmonkey and the Bootstrap. The Bootstrap has the shoulder strap connecting vertically to the sides of the bag.

Organization

The flap and opening has the Greenroom136 signature extended-height main compartment with 420D ripstop. When the bag is closed by folding over the flap, the extra material ensures the opening is facing downwards, with no chance of rain getting inside the bag or items hopping out.

Greenroom136 Metrodrifter top open

Being a smaller bag, the Metrodrifter does not have the outer layer of pockets between the main lining and the outer fabric like the other Greenroom136 bags. On the inside of the main compartment, there are still pockets wrapped around the entire inside. In the back, there is one full size pocket. On the front wall, two pockets. A pocket on either side of the bag complete the circle.

internal

The back pocket is just under 10 inch wide, large enough for a kindle. It in theory will fit my 11 inch iPad Pro, but the iPad Pro is too tall for the bag. Plus, if I add my Apple Smart Keyboard Folio to the iPad Pro then it will not fit. The height of that pocket is almost 6 inches with the flap closed. The front of that pocket, the side that faces into the main area, is slightly padded with thin foam on the top half. That gives the bag and that pocket some rigidity.

Greenroom136 Metrodrifter internal

The two half width pockets in the front all fit several of my small EDC pouches nicely. The side pockets are very small, large enough for a pack of tissues or a set of keys. The rest of the main compartment is large enough for a jacket, a few books, or my 16oz Klean Kanteen water bottle. My 11 inch iPad Pro can also fit into the main compartment diagonally.

Greenroom136 Metrodrifter internal

There is a zipper pocket in the front of the pack, covered by the flap when closed. It’s a good place to store a wallet, phone or keys. Curiously there is no key keeper loop anywhere. I would settle for a D ring inside that compartment. Instead there are two D rings on the back of the pack designed for an optional chest strap. I don’t think a chest strap is necessary for a bag this small, unless you’re riding a bike, but the D rings ended up being useful for attaching other things to the bag.

Greenroom136 Metrodrifter front open

The side of the bags has a 2 x 2 webbing setup for attaching additional pouches. Their SidePouch 4 fits very well in that space.

Greenroom136 Metrodrifter side of bag

What’s Perfect

  • The bag is super comfortable to carry.
  • It has just enough organization inside and outside for EDC. It fits my theory that the smaller the bag, the more pockets it need to keep items separated for easy access.
  • This may be subjective, but I think the bag looks good. It retains the visual aesthetics of their full size messenger bag without looking silly as a small bag.

What’s Not

  • Do away with the padded shoulder strap harness to reduce cost; I prefer to swap that feature with the next bullet point.
  • Could use a reversible strap design like it’s bigger brother.
  • Add a small grab handle in the back of the bag so that I can pick up the bag without using the main strap.
Greenroom136 Metrodrifter back of bag

Wrap up

This bag surprised me. A “mini” messenger bag is what came to mind when I first saw the bag online. Is shrinking a messenger design down to a 5L bag a good idea? I wasn’t sure, but now I’m convinced that this is a very clever design. Greenroom136 took out the features that don’t make sense, like the outer layer of pockets around the main compartment, but kept the other features in this smaller version. For me, this become the gateway into wanting to try the Bootstrap or the Junkmonkey.

Finally, I can say that this bag is slightly over built. Using a lighter fabric like 500D would not take away from the usability of the bag, but that is not the Greenroom136 design philosophy. Their bags are known for being overbuilt, durable and they are warrantied for life.

Greenroom136 Metrodrifter front of bag

I have been EDC’ing this bag for a few weeks now. Occasionally I wished the bag was slightly larger, but almost always slimming down my gear was the answer. Using this bag has pushed my EDC kit down a slight notch for the better. The Metrodrifter is available directly from Greenroom136, comes in a variety of colors, and retails for $60 USD before shipping.

Disclaimer: This Metrodrifter was provided by Greenroom136 to the author for review purposes. The content of this review was not shared with Greenroom136 before publishing. Our reviews are unbiased and never modified to keep a brand happy.

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