View Full Version : Pros/cons of packing cube options for Aeronaut

12-26-2013, 05:34 AM
In advance of ordering an Aeronaut, I want to decide on packing cubes. The bag description states that end pockets can fit four together, like books on shelf, in the main compartment. That appealed to me, but now I see that the fabric/mesh versions are out of stock, so I started to reconsider. Not sure I want cubes without being able to see the contents.

That brings me to the small packing cube, which has the mesh, and which the Aeronaut will also fit four.

I'm concerned, though, about the small packing cube, because I don't want the bag to have a wide profile. According to the specs provided, placing those small cubes flat-side down makes for a stacked width of 8.6". End cubes, placed like books, have a width profile of 7.9". Yes, that's a difference of .7", and may be insignificant. But I've never seen this bag other than on videos here so I can't really determine what is significant.

The large cube is square at 13.4" on a side, so I conclude that the packable width of 13.4" allows for four end cubes (4x3.1"=12.4") but that four small cubes stacked like books would be too wide for the main compartment (4x4.3"=17.2"). A narrower profile in the latter case (6.7"), but how does that intrude in to the end pockets? That I don't know. What about stacking horizontally? That's 3+" more than the stated height of the bag itself. Does it flex in that orientation?

I'm probably over-thinking this. I'd like to read some personal experience with this issue. Please share your own

Frank II
12-26-2013, 11:03 AM
First, and foremost, remember.....none of these dimensions is hard sided or exact. They are basically the maximum the cubes can go.

Second, the Aeronaut packing cubes were designed to maximize the packing space in the bag. The main compartment can hold up to either 2 large packing cubes or one large packing cube and two small packing cubes or four small packing cubes.

The end cubes are meant for the end compartments.

If you put the end packing cubes in the main compartment, you will take away some of the room in the end compartments. The small packing cubes will fit in the end compartments with room to spare.

You could place four end cubes in the main compartment by putting them on their sides but nothing else would fit. This would not be an efficient use of space.

The big question is why do you need to stack them like books as in all in one row? And how many smaller packing cubes do you really need?

I've packed it with a large cube, two small cubes, and one end cube (in the end pocket) and it left enough room to add a few pouches. And my bag was not overly stuffed.

12-26-2013, 12:04 PM
I've gotta go with Frank here. Unless you are packing multiple small cubes for different family members or something, I think the best use of space is to use the end pocket cubes in the end pockets, and either 2 large or 1 large and 2 small cubes in the main compartment. The trick with using opaque cubes is to put anything you'd need ready to hand in a stuff sack of a specific color. I generally find it easiest when I use the packing cubes only for stuff I do not need en route.

Just fyi, I use one large and one end pocket cube in my Aeronaut, and make up the difference with stuff sacks and maybe (if needed) a small Western Flyer cube that I have on hand.

12-26-2013, 07:26 PM
I also agree with Badger and Frank. I love my aeronaut! But the cubes and pouches that I use vary from trip to trip. Don't forget the packing cube backpack-great for pants and shirts, with room for sandals in bottom pocket. Also the packing cube shoulder bag is the perfect size for athletic or dress shoes. To be honest, I don't use the PCBP as a backpack, nor the PCSB as a shoulder bag, but I wouldn't ever give them up because the fit my packing needs so perfectly. Also, stuff sacks in every size. Great for socks, underwear, cords, chargers. Again, I have more organizers than available space in my aeronaut, but i need different options depending on where I'm going, the climate and the occasion. YMMV

12-27-2013, 04:17 AM
Well, I did acknowledge that I was probably overthinking it...

More strategies and anecdotes, please.

Bonus question: the tie-down straps at bottom of the Aeronaut--are they long enough to encircle and secure packing cubes? Two large, or a large and two smalls?

Bonus2: How much space is left around the packing cubes for tucking in stuff?

12-27-2013, 06:26 PM
So, I don't have the tie down straps.. my Aeronaut is too old.

I generally pack (for a week or more):
Main compartment
one large with my jeans/pants/shirts
one small with my underwear/socks/bras
one small with PJs, work out clothes
side compartment
one end starts with yarn/shawl - usually ends up as in my Synapse with leftover clean clothing at the end of the trip.
side compartment
other assorted pouches and travel sacks

The iPad goes in a breve on the top of the main section and there's almost always a few nooks to put smaller items.

When there's less clothes, I condense the middle section to one large and one small cube and end up stuffing in way more yarn.

Frank II
12-27-2013, 11:17 PM
Bonus question: the tie-down straps at bottom of the Aeronaut--are they long enough to encircle and secure packing cubes? Two large, or a large and two smalls?

Bonus2: How much space is left around the packing cubes for tucking in stuff?


#2--It depends on how much you put in the cubes. Remember, they're soft sided and not rigid. How much space they take up depends on how much you pack.

12-28-2013, 12:36 AM
I use Packing Cube Backpacks in different colors in the main compartment as well as Travel Stuff Sacks and my Trusty Travel Tray. The Packing Cube Shoulder Bag goes in one of the side pocket, the other houses the Large Travel Stuff Sack.

In a pinch, all Packing Cubes can do double duty: clean laundry bags, grocery bags, bookstores, stationary stores finds holders, purses or workout stuff holders.

A Small Shop Bag packed flat or in its side pocket is a must, if the destination entails a lengthy stay at a hotel or a studio rental with a kitchenette, being able to buy healthy food at the grocery store instead of, or, in addition to dining out is very useful.
It is a must for people on a special diet.