I discovered the NORB, an acronym for No Ordinary Range Bag several years ago when Gabby Franco posted hers online and showed a short video of all the things she could carry in it. I was a new shooter back then and was immediately impressed at the versatility. I also respect Ms Franco’s opinion on equipment becuase she is a professional shooter and probably has more experience than I have in the world of range bags. Although I hadn’t purchased any range bag since I first started shooting 4 years ago, the NORB was still in the back of my mind as a great range bag with a funny name.
A few years later I saw in an issue of the Sure Shot’s Magazine an ad for OffHand Gear and their hand guards. I was amazed at their designs and checked out their website. Little did I know, this was the same company that made that amazing bag, the NORB. Recently, OffHand Gear posted online their new NORB-C. A compact version of their original NORB and I shared the post online with CCLSC, my ladies’ shooting club. The same day OffHand Gear’s owner Sandi contacted me to test one of their NORB bags and I jumped at the opportunity. Here is my full review of the NORB in Kyptek Typhon.
It’s smaller than I thought. Not by measure, but what I assumed, the size of a bag to carry all the things you’d need to go to the range. I was accustomed to my backpack that I can stuff (uncomfortably at times) full of whatever I figured I might need. Most of it I don’t actually need.
The NORB is measured at 12 inches tall by 14 inches wide by 3 inches deep. The website states that the bag can stand on its own and I was skeptical. I immediately took it out of the packaging and attempted to stand it up. Sure enough it does. I was even more curious to see if it stood up once I filled the bag with anything I could find. Surprise: it does.
Once I opened the bag up and started looking at the fabric and pockets, I realized the NORB was made with high quality buckles, soft fabric lined and sturdy zippers. Sandi also included a short handle accessory which is nice because I like to grab my purses by the handle and sling them over my shoulder. The short handle accessory is sold separately, but I would highly recommend purchasing one with your NORB. The NORB is heavy duty and appears sturdy enough to hold up to regular use at the different ranges I go to. The strap is made of a bungee cord covered with a woven material so it has stretch without pinching.
From the website - "Why on earth does NORB have a skinny, bungie strap on it?" Well, where is your hand when you have that wide strapped bag on your shoulder? It's holding it on your shoulder, right? Wide straps are a better design for men so I started the design process with the strap and designed it after a bra strap. The OffHand Gear bungie strap will stay on your shoulder, so your hands are free for other things (coffee for me), and the bungie distributes all that weight when you walk. Walking with all your range gear, especially in heels, creates a lot of stress on our shoulder and heads right to our feet. With the bungie strap, the weight gives with you taking some of that pressure off of your feet and even more importantly off your shoulder. Of course you can also cross body carry NORB and that bungie makes it a little easier to get on and off.
At The Range
Of course I wanted to test this claim. At the range at the following CCLSC practice, I packed my bag and heading to the range. Usually I need to put my backpack down to move around the range to teach, but this time, I kept the NORB on my shoulder to see if it would stay in place. Sure enough it did.
How much can you REALLY carry? I was seriously skeptical. I figured there had to be a trick or something when I saw how much Gabby Franco could hold in hers. I emptied my backpack and took a picture of everything in it and then proceeded to put it all in the NORB. All of it. Everything I take to the range with the exception of my clipboard which I don’t always carry with me. It actually fits more than I take to the range. I generally only carry one pistol with me the NORB has the capacity for two, plus everything else.
Lastly, I showed my husband the NORB and he said “That’s it? Do you have everything in there?” I replied yes and proceeded to take everything out and show him. He said “WOW. Looks great like a regular bag. And it’s smaller, so it will be easier to carry and take to matches.”
You can check out the NORB here.
Part Two: IDPA Matches