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Title:
A BACKPACK WITH A MOVEABLE BACKPACK COMPARTMENT
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2021/075974
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
A backpack (1) with a moveable backpack compartment (3), comprising a flexible rail (4) fixed to a harness (2), the flexible rail (4) terminates in two rail ends (7); a slider (9) configured for connecting the backpack compartment (3) to the flexible rail (4); a docking device (10) for releasably retaining the slider (9) in a fixed position on the flexible rail (4) between the two rail ends (7). The slider (9) comprises a first slider element (11) for connection to the flexible rail (4) and a second slider element (12) for connection to the backpack compartment (3); the first and second slider elements (11,12) being rotatably connected such that the backpack compartment (3) may be rotated and oriented relative to the flexible rail (4), the second slider element (12) is rotatably connected to the backpack compartment (3) about a first axis (A1).

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Inventors:
KUHLEFELT, Jan-Henrik W. (3930 PORSGRUNN, NO)
Application Number:
NO2020/050248
Publication Date:
April 22, 2021
Filing Date:
October 12, 2020
Export Citation:
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Assignee:
KUHLEFELT, Jan-Henrik W. (3930 PORSGRUNN, NO)
International Classes:
A45F3/04; A45F3/08
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
ZACCO NORWAY AS (0125 OSLO, NO)
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Claims:
CLAIMS

1. A backpack (1) with a moveable backpack compartment (3), comprising; a flexible rail (4) fixed to a harness (2), the flexible rail (4) terminates in two rail ends

(7); a slider (9) configured for connecting the backpack compartment (3) to the flexible rail (4); a docking device (10) for releasably retaining the slider (9) in a fixed position on the flexible rail (4) between the two rail ends (7); the slider (9) comprises a first slider element (11) for connection to the flexible rail (4) and a second slider element (12) for connection to the backpack compartment

(3); the first and second slider elements (11,12) being rotatably connected such that the backpack compartment (3) may be rotated and oriented relative to the flexible rail

(4), the second slider element (12) is rotatably connected to the backpack compartment (3) about a first axis (A1).

2. The backpack (1) of claim 1 , where the slider (9) further comprises a third slider element (14) connecting the first and second slider elements (11,12).

3. The backpack (1) of claim 2, where the first and third slider element (11,14) is rotatably connected about a second rotation axis (A2) and the second and third slider element (12,14) is rotatably connected about a third rotation axis (A3), for increasing the degrees of freedom for the backpack compartment (3) relative to the flexible rail (4).

4. The backpack (1) of claim 3, where the second and third axes (A2,A3) are oriented generally perpendicular to each other. 5. The backpack (1) of any previous claim, where the docking device (10) is positioned on a back portion (5) of the harness (2).

6. The backpack (1) of any previous claim, where the docking device (10) and/or the slider (9) comprises a magnet (15; 16) configured for retaining the slider (9) at the docking device (10).

7. The backpack (1) of any previous claim, where the docking device (10) is formed generally symmetrical such that the slider (9) may enter the docking device (10) from both sides along the flexible rail (4).

8. The backpack (1) of any previous claim, where the docking device (10) further comprises an abutment portion (17) for restricting movement of the slider (9) in a direction away from the harness (2).

9. The backpack (1) of claim 8, where the abutment portion (17) is configured for snap-lock engagement with the slider (9).

10. The backpack (1) of claim 8 or 9, where the abutment portion (17) is configured for abutment with the third element (14) of the slider (9).

11. The backpack (1) of any previous claim, where the flexible rail (4) extends on the harness (2) from one shoulder portion (6) across the back portion (5) to the other shoulder portion (6).

12. The backpack (1) of any previous claim, where the flexible rail (4) comprises rigid elements (29) spaced apart in a longitudinal direction and provided on a flexible material (30).

13. The backpack (1) of any previous claim, where the backpack compartment (3) comprises lower fastening portions (25) configured for releasable fastening to the harness (2). 14. The backpack (1) of claim 13, where the lower fastening portions (25) are configured for being simultaneously released from the harness (2) by pulling a waist strap (27).

15. The backpack (1) of any previous claim, where the harness (2) comprises a friction reducing material along at least a portion of the flexible rail (4).

Description:
A BACKPACK WITH A MOVEABLE BACKPACK COMPARTMENT

The present invention relates to a backpack. More specifically, the disclosure relates to a backpack with a movable backpack compartment as defined in the introductory parts of claim 1.

BACKGROUND

Documents useful for understanding the field of technology include US 2017238682 A1 , US 2010230458 A1 and GB 2556407 A1.

A backpack with a movable backpack compartment is also known from NO 334271 B1. The backpack compartment can be carried on the back of a harness like a conventional backpack, but the backpack compartment can also be moved along a rail across one or both of the shoulders to a position at the front of the harness. The backpack compartment is connected to a slider that can be moved along the rail attached to the harness.

However, a problem with such a backpack with a movable backpack compartment is that the rail may not provide enough flexibility, such that the harness and rail may be uncomfortable to wear and may also occupy needless space when not worn if it is rigid.

Another problem with known moveable backpack compartments is that the slider does not provide a snag-free and smooth transition from a position at the back to a position at the front. The backpack compartment may snag because the slider is awkwardly positioned relative to the rail, or is pulled in a direction that is disadvantageous for a smooth movement along the rail. It is cumbersome and very difficult to move the backpack compartment along the rail if the backpack compartment has a fixed orientation relative to the rail, and this is problematic especially when moving the backpack compartment over the shoulder portion. The backpack compartment must be allowed to move and be oriented somewhat relative to the rail, in order to ensure easy relocation of the backpack compartment from the back position to the front position, and vice versa.

Yet another problem with known systems is insufficient retaining of the slider in the position at the back of the harness, this is especially true if the backpack compartment is fully packed and heavy. The slider may also easily and accidentally be pulled out of the optimal position at the back of the harness, which may result in uneven loading and discomfort for the user.

There is therefore a need for an improved backpack with a moveable backpack compartment to reduce or eliminate the above mentioned disadvantages of known techniques. It is an objective of the present invention to achieve this and to provide further advantages over the state of the art.

SUMMARY

It is an object of the present invention to mitigate, alleviate or eliminate one or more of the above-identified deficiencies and disadvantages in the prior art and solve at least the above mentioned problem.

According to a first aspect of the invention, there is provided a backpack with a moveable backpack compartment, comprising a flexible rail fixed to a harness, the flexible rail terminates in two rail ends; a slider configured for connecting the backpack compartment to the flexible rail; and a docking device for releasably retaining the slider in a fixed position on the flexible rail between the two rail ends. The slider comprises a first slider element for connection to the flexible rail and a second slider element for connection to the backpack compartment, the first and second slider elements being rotatably connected such that the backpack compartment may be rotated and oriented relative to the flexible rail. The second slider element is rotatably connected to the backpack compartment about a first axis.

According to an embodiment of the invention the slider further comprises a third slider element connecting the first and second slider elements.

According to an embodiment of the invention the first and third slider element is rotatably connected about a second rotation axis and the second and third slider element is rotatably connected about a third rotation axis, for increasing the degrees of freedom for the backpack compartment relative to the flexible rail.

According to an embodiment of the invention the second and third axes are oriented generally perpendicular to each other. According to an embodiment of the invention the docking device is positioned on a back portion of the harness.

According to an embodiment of the invention the docking device and/or the slider comprises a magnet configured for retaining the slider at the docking device. According to an embodiment of the invention the docking device is formed generally symmetrical such that the slider may enter the docking device from both sides along the flexible rail.

According to an embodiment of the invention the docking device further comprises an abutment portion for restricting movement of the slider in a direction away from the harness.

According to an embodiment of the invention the abutment portion is configured for snap-lock engagement with the slider.

According to an embodiment of the invention the abutment portion is configured for abutment with the third element of the slider. According to an embodiment of the invention the flexible rail extends on the harness from one shoulder portion across the back portion to the other shoulder portion.

According to an embodiment of the invention the flexible rail comprises rigid elements spaced apart in a longitudinal direction and provided on a flexible material.

According to an embodiment of the invention the backpack compartment comprises lower fastening portions configured for releasable fastening to the harness.

According to an embodiment of the invention the lower fastening portions are configured for being simultaneously released from the harness by pulling a waist strap.

According to an embodiment of the invention the harness comprises a friction reducing material along at least a portion of the flexible rail.

The present invention will become apparent from the detailed description given below. The detailed description and specific examples disclose preferred embodiments of the invention by way of illustration only. Those skilled in the art understand from guidance in the detailed description that changes and modifications may be made within the scope of the invention.

Hence, it is to be understood that the herein disclosed invention is not limited to the particular component parts of the device described or steps of the methods described since such device and method may vary. It is also to be understood that the terminology used herein is for purpose of describing particular embodiments only, and is not intended to be limiting. It should be noted that, as used in the specification and the appended claim, the articles "a", "an" and "the" are intended to mean that there are one or more of the elements unless the context explicitly dictates otherwise. Thus, for example, reference to "a unit" or "the unit" may include several devices, and the like. Furthermore, the words "comprising", "including", "containing" and similar wordings does not exclude other elements or steps.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The above objects, as well as additional objects, features and advantages of the present invention, will be more fully appreciated by reference to the following illustrative and non-limiting detailed description of example embodiments of the present invention, when taken in conjunction with the accompanying figures.

Figure 1a shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a backpack with a movable backpack compartment, where the backpack compartment is positioned at the back of the harness.

Figure 1b shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a backpack with a movable backpack compartment, where the backpack compartment is in an intermediate position at a shoulder.

Figure 1c shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a backpack with a movable backpack compartment, where the backpack compartment is positioned at the front of the harness.

Figure 2 shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a harness and a slider system according to an embodiment of the present disclosure. A slider is positioned on top of a shoulder portion, and a docking device is positioned on a back portion of the harness. Figure 3 shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a slider connected to a flexible rail.

Figure 4 shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a docking device positioned below a flexible rail. Figure 5 shows a cross-sectional view through an embodiment of a slider and a docking device.

Figure 6 shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a slider connected to a flexible rail and retained in a docking device.

Figure 7 shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a backpack with a movable backpack compartment, where the backpack comprises shoulder straps and a waist strap.

Figure 8 shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a shoulder portion of the harness.

Figure 9 shows a perspective view of an embodiment of a harness according to an embodiment of the present disclosure. The harness comprises a waist band for detaching the backpack compartment from the harness.

Figure 10 shows an embodiment of a portion of a flexible rail.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

The present invention will now be described with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which preferred example embodiments of the invention are shown. The invention may, however, be embodied in other forms and should not be construed as limited to the herein disclosed embodiments. The disclosed embodiments are provided to fully convey the scope of the invention to the skilled person.

Referring initially to figures 1a, 1b and 1c, a backpack 1 comprising a harness 2 and a backpack compartment 3 is illustrated. The harness 2 comprises a flexible rail 4, to which the backpack compartment 3 is connected. In figure 1a, the backpack compartment 3 is positioned centered on a back portion 5, such that the backpack compartment 3 rests centrally on the back of a user wearing the backpack 1. The flexible rail 4 is fixed to the harness 2, and may as such be sewn, welded, or by other means attached to the harness 2.

The backpack compartment 3 is connected to the flexible rail 4 by means of a slider and a slider system only partially visible in figures 1a, 1b and 1c. The flexible rail 4 and slider (see figures 2-6) allow the backpack compartment 3 to be moved from the position in figure 1a at the back of the harness 2 to a frontal position as illustrated in figure 1c. The intermediate position illustrated in figure 1b is when the backpack compartment is in transition from front to back or vice versa. In figure 1b the backpack compartment 3 is positioned at a shoulder portion 6.

The flexible rail 4 extends from the back portion 5 of the harness 2 across the shoulder portions 6 towards the front of the harness 2 to a frontal position. The frontal position of the backpack compartment 3 is thus approximately on the chest of a user of the backpack 1. At the front of the harness 2 the flexible rail 4 terminates at one rail end 7 at each shoulder portion 6. At the rail ends 7, the backpack compartment is prevented from further movement along the flexible rail 4. A rail end 7 is located at both ends of the flexible rail 4. The flexible rail 4 may adapt to the body shape of the user of the backpack 1 , and when not in use, the backpack 1 may easily be stowed away because the flexible rail 4 is malleable.

Referring now to figure 2, the harness 2 and a slider system 8 is shown without the backpack compartment. The slider system 8 may comprise the flexible rail 4, a slider 9 configured for connecting the backpack compartment to the flexible rail 4, and a docking device 10. The slider 9 ensures smooth glide of the backpack compartment along the flexible rail 4, while securely fixing the backpack compartment to the flexible rail 4.

In the illustrated embodiment, the docking device 10 is positioned in the middle of the back portion 5, i.e. in the center between the shoulder portions 6. The docking device 10 is configured for releasably retaining the slider 9 in a fixed position along the flexible rail 4. The docking device 10 thus ensures that the backpack compartment is positioned correctly while on the back of the harness 2, and the backpack compartment is also prohibited from accidentally moving along the rail 4 when it is positioned in the docking device 10. The back portion 5 of the harness may be reinforced, such that the harness 2 can be worn without the backpack compartment and as such act as a back padding or spine protector when skiing, cycling, etc. The docking device 10 may be an integrated element of such a reinforcement.

The harness 2 may comprise a friction reducing material (not illustrated) along the rail 4. The harness 2 may be made from a coarse material, and as the slider 9 is pulled along the harness 2 it may be difficult to ensure a smooth glide of the slider 9 along the rail 4. The friction reducing material may be provided along at least a portion of the flexible rail 4, and reduces the friction between the slider 9 and the harness 2. The friction reducing material may be a coating, a layer of material or any other means for creating low friction contact between the slider 9 and the harness 2. The friction reducing material may be a longitudinal strip approximate the rail 4, preventing snagging of the slider 9 as it is slid back and forth along the rail 4. The friction reducing material may be particularly useful on the shoulder portion of the harness 2, where the slider 9 is most likely to be in contact with the harness 2.

Figure 3 illustrates the slider 9 connected to the flexible rail 4. The slider 9 may comprise a first slider element 11 for connection to the flexible rail 4. The first slider element 11 may comprise an opening corresponding to a T-slot profile or groove, in which a portion of the flexible rail 4 is accommodated. This is also illustrated in the cross section of figure 5. The slider 9 is thus free to move along the flexible rail 4, but is prevented from separation from the flexible rail 4.

The slider 9 may comprise a second slider element 12 for connection to the backpack compartment. The second slider element 12 may comprise a protruding portion 13 such as a knob, for connection to the backpack compartment. Alternatively, the protruding portion 13 could be placed on the backpack compartment, and the second slider element 12 may comprise a corresponding receiving portion. The connection between the backpack compartment and the slider 9 could as such be formed in numerous ways. The connection could even be releasable, such that the backpack compartment could be detachable from the flexible rail 4 and the harness. The backpack compartment is rotatably connected to the second slider element 12, and may as such be rotatable about a first axis A1. The backpack compartment may thus rotate independently of the slider 9. In the illustrated embodiment, a third slider element 14 connects the first and second slider elements 11,12, but the slider 9 may also be provided without the third slider element 14. The third slider element 14 may be rotatably connected to the first slider element 11 about a second axis A2, and rotatably connected to the second slider element 11 about a third axis A3, and the third slider element 14 may thus enable even more degrees of freedom for the slider 9. In a relaxed state of the slider 9, the first and second rotation axes A1,A2 may be possible to arrange in parallel, while the third rotation axis A3 may be generally perpendicular to the two other axes A1,A2. The third rotation axis A3 may as such be parallel with the longitudinal direction of the flexible rail 4. The second axis A2 is in the illustrated embodiment positioned outside of the flexible rail 4, but the second axis A2 may also be positioned such that it partially or fully intersects with the flexible rail 4.

A distance between the flexible rail 4 and the third rotation axis A3 allows the backpack compartment to be positioned a distance from the flexible rail 4, while also being rotatable about the axis A3 generally parallel with the flexible rail. The backpack compartment can as such be in a generally vertical position even when it is slid across the shoulder portion of the harness, as illustrated in figure 1b (shown with a backpack compartment) and figure 2 (shown without a backpack compartment).

Alternatively, the first and second slider elements 11,12 can be connected by a string, a flexible or pliable portion, or similar means. Such a connection allows the first and second slider elements 11,12 to be moved freely relative to another, within a range defined by the length of the string or the pliable portion. The first and second elements 11,12 could as such be formed as one part.

Because the first and second slider elements 11,12 are rotatably connected, the backpack compartment is allowed to be rotated and oriented relative to the flexible rail 4. This allows the backpack compartment to be moved smooth and snag-free along the flexible rail.

The slider 9 may comprise a slider magnet 15. The slider magnet 15 may alternatively be a magnetic material. The slider magnet 15 may interlock with a corresponding docking magnet or magnetic material on the docking device (not illustrated in figure 3, see figure 4) such that the slider is held in place while positioned on the docking device. Figure 4 shows the docking device 10. The docking device 10 is illustrated positioned in the proximity of the flexible rail 4. In the illustrated embodiment, the docking device 10 is positioned on an underside of the flexible rail 4, but the docking device 10 could as such also be positioned on the upper side of the flexible rail 4, or even be part of the flexible rail 4. This would require the slider to be formed such that the first slider element could be interconnected with the docking device.

The docking device 10 may comprise a docking magnet 16 similar to the slider magnet 15, for interlocking with the slider 9 when it is positioned on the docking device 10. The docking device 10 may additionally comprise an abutment portion 17, for restricting movement of the slider in a direction away from the harness. The abutment portion 17 is described further with reference to figure 5.

The docking device 10 may also comprise a sunk top portion 18 configured for accommodating a portion of the slider, and which provides the slider to come to a rest in the center of the docking device 10. The sunk top portion 18 physically retains the slider when it is resting in the docking device 10 and secures the slider and the backpack compartment in the docking device 10 in a sideways direction.

The sunk top portion 18 can be shaped such that it allows the slider to escape upon a rotational movement, whereas a translational movement along the flexible rail 4 may cause the slider to abut the raised side portions on both sides of the sunk top portion. As such, the slider is prevented from accidentally escaping the docking device 10, as the backpack compartment may be rotated by a user in order to easily escape the docking device 10.

The docking device 10 also relieves the flexible rail 4 from heavy loads from the backpack compartment, and the docking device 10 may distribute load to the harness. The docking device 10 may as such be an integrated part of the back padding or spine protector of the harness, as described with reference to figure 2. The flexible rail 4 need therefore not be designed to carry a fully loaded backpack compartment at all times, as the docking device 10 carries most of the loads while the backpack compartment is carried on the back of the harness.

As the backpack compartment and slider is pulled by a user towards the left or the right, the slider follows the curved flexible rail 4 and is lifted out of the sunk top portion 18. The magnets 15,16 are also separated by this sideways movement, and the backpack compartment can easily be pulled along the flexible rail 4 towards the front of the harness. A pair of magnets are separated more easily when moved sideways in relation to one another, than when separated normal to each other. As such, strong magnets can be utilized that will prevent the slider from separating from the docking device in a direction away from the harness, but the magnets will separate easily upon a sideways movement.

Figure 5 illustrates how the slider 9 may enter the docking device 10. The slider 9 may be entered onto the docking device 10 in a direction towards the harness, i.e. in a direction to the left in figure 5 as illustrated, or in a sideways direction (not illustrated). A sidewise direction would correspond to a direction normal to the plane of figure 5. The abutment portion 17 may be spring-loaded, such that it can be compressed into the docking device 10 upon abutment with the slider 9. In the illustrated embodiment, a protruding portion 19 on the third slider element 14 of the slider 9 abuts the abutment portion 17. The protruding portion 19 could be positioned anywhere on the slider 9.

The protruding portion 19 may compress the abutment portion 17 and can thereby pass it, and the protruding portion 19 comes to a rest as the abutment portion 17 locks the protruding portion 19 and slider 9 in place. Alternatively, the abutment portion 17 and protruding portion 19 can be formed as a snap-lock engagement, and/or the abutment portion 17 and/or the protruding portion 19 may be made from a flexible material that can be elastically deformed, to thereby return to its initial shape.

As described with reference to figure 3 and 4, the slider 9 and locking device 10 may also comprise magnets 15,16.

The first slider element 11 is configured for connection to the flexible rail 4, as described with reference to figure 3. The first slider element 11 may comprise a T- slot profile 20 through which a corresponding slot portion 21 of the flexible rail 4 may run. Alternatively, the flexible rail 4 may comprise the T-slot profile, and the first slider element 11 may comprise a corresponding slot portion 21. Alternative ways that a skilled person would recognize in order to connect a slider to a rail may also be utilized.

Figure 6 shows the slider 9 retained in the docking device 10. The slider 9 is firmly secured between the flexible rail 4 and the docking device 10. Figures 7 and 8 show an embodiment of a backpack 1 comprising a movable backpack compartment 3. The backpack 1 may comprise shoulder straps 22 configured for connecting the backpack compartment 3 to the shoulder portions 6 of the harness 2. The shoulder straps 22 may be fixed to the upper portion of the backpack compartment 3, and may be releasably connected to the shoulder portions 6 by a first buckle 23 or a second buckle 24. The first and second buckles 23,24 may be a clasp or any means known in the art for attaching a strap. If the backpack compartment 3 is not intended to be moved, the shoulder straps 22 may prevent the backpack compartment 3 from moving in a sideways direct ion and may securely pull the backpack compartment 3 towards the back portion 5 of the harness 2.

The backpack compartment 3 may comprise lower fastening portions 25. The lower fastening portions 25 may be flaps fixed to both sides of a lower portion of the backpack compartment 3. The lower fastening portions 25 may be releasably secured to a waist portion 26 of the harness 2. The lower fastening portions 25 may be released from the waist portion 26 of the harness 2 by pulling a waist strap 27. Upon pulling the waist strap 27, the fastening portions 25 may be simultaneously released from the waist portions 26. This is described more in detail with reference to figure 9.

The first buckle 23 may be positioned on the shoulder portion 6 at a position closer to the back portion 5 and the second buckle 24 may be positioned on the shoulder portion 6 further away from the back portion 5. The second buckle 24 may be positioned in the vicinity of the rail end 7, and should be positioned such that it does not obstruct the backpack compartment 3 from being moved all the way to the front of the harness 2. Each shoulder portion 6 may comprise at least a first and a second buckle 23,24, in order to allow the strap to be connected at different positions on the shoulder portion 6. The first buckle 23 may be used to attach the shoulder strap 22 in order to secure the backpack compartment 3 when it is not intended to be moved, as is commonly known. The shoulder straps 22 may pull the backpack compartment 3 closer to the back portion 5, and both shoulder straps 22 on both shoulder portions 6 may be tightened similarly to secure a symmetrical and even fit.

If the backpack compartment 3 is to be moved towards the front, the shoulder strap 22 at the shoulder portion 6 the backpack compartment 3 is to be moved across may be attached to the second buckle 24 and thus act as a handle that is easily accessible from the front of the harness 2. The shoulder strap 22 at the other shoulder portion 6 should at this instance not be connected to any of the first or second buckles 23,24. The user of the backpack 1 may have a preferred shoulder to move the backpack compartment 3 across, and this side may thus have the strap attached to the second buckle 24 at all times. It is as such easy to locate and pull the shoulder strap 22 in order to move the backpack compartment 3 across the shoulder. The shoulder strap 22 is readily positioned on the front of the harness 2, and the user need not twist his or her arm backwards in order to get hold of the backpack compartment 3.

Figure 9 shows how the waist strap 27 may extend from one waist portion 26 of the harness 2 across the back portion 5 and to another waist portion 26 on the opposite side. The releasable fixing means 28 for fixing the fastening portion of the backpack compartment may be a magnet or similar device that, upon pulling the waist strap 27, may disconnect from the fastening portion and the backpack compartment may thus be free to be moved to the front of the harness. The waist strap 27 may be configured such that the releasable fixing means 28 may be disconnected from the lower fastening portions of the backpack compartment by pulling the strap in either direction, i.e. the waist strap 27 may be pulled both on the left and the right waist portions 26.

Figure 10 shows an embodiment of the flexible rail 4. The flexible rail 4 may comprise rigid elements 29 spaced apart in a longitudinal direction and provided on a flexible material 30 such as a fabric. This allows the flexible rail 4 to be bent and adapt to the shape of the harness and the body of the wearer of the backpack. The rigid elements 29 may be shaped basically like a cube or a rectangular prism with rounded edges. Such a shape allows the slider to easily slide along the flexible rail 4, while still providing sufficient strength and maneuverability. The rigid elements 29 may be welded, glued or otherwise fixed to the flexible material 30.

Alternatively, the flexible rail 4 may be made from a plastic or other durable and pliable material, and may as such be realized by use of an extruded profile incorporating two or more materials with different stiffness and elongation module.

The person skilled in the art realizes that the present invention is not limited to the preferred embodiments described above. The person skilled in the art further realizes that modifications and variations are possible within the scope of the appended claims. Additionally, variations to the disclosed embodiments can be understood and effected by the skilled person in practicing the claimed invention, from a study of the drawings, the disclosure, and the appended claims.