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Review:  Ritter gig-bags 

By Andy Long

Includes a give-away contest. You could win 1 of 3 Ritter soft shell gig bags.  See below for details. 

Variety, so they say, is the spice of life. We bass players, certainly like variety. Variety in our instruments, amplifiers, effects and various add-on bits of gear that give us our 'sound'. There's one essential bit of kit that we all need though, regardless of what instrument we play and where we happen to play it. A good quality, reliable gig bag.

When I bought my first bass in the year nineteen-hundred-and-soaking-wet, it came in a soft vinyl, zip-up case with a simple handle. "Great!" I thought, but after a few months I was thinking "It'd be good if it had a pocket to put my strap in, and a couple of leads, and some spare strings, and a tuner, and some music, and..." The list goes on.

Since it's rise in popularity the humble gig bag has evolved into a multi-faceted storage facility with more pockets than Fagin and, of course there are many options on the market. Today I'll be looking at three very different bags from the UK-based company Ritter.

Each of the bags we will look at is also available for Electric or acoustic guitars, as are most of Ritter's range. The company has been making gig bags since 1997 and makes a wide variety of bags for all instruments as well as high end light leather goods and field sports luggage. They make bags to suit every pocketbook, ranging from GBP 5.95 for a simple bag up to GBP 75.95 for the Super-Pak, reviewed here. These three are their three finest and at the end of this article you will be given the chance to win one, so get reading!


The Chromo-Pak RG9000-B.


This bag represents the top model of the Chromo-Pak range, each model in the range has a number and, as far as I can tell, the higher the number, the more pockets and features you get. The bag is constructed of thick foam that will protect your instruments from the kind of knocks and bashes it's going to get on the tour bus. The actual instrument compartment is spacious enough for a wide-necked six-string, for instance, but snug enough to hold your instrument securely. In front of the neck is a huge pocket emblazoned with the Ritter logo whilst in front of the actual body of the instrument is the main storage area. This consists of one large pocket, big enough to store sheet music.

Inside this pocket is a smaller, zippered compartment with a variety of flaps and slots for items like diaries, pens, wallets etc. On the front of the large pocket is another zippered pocket suitable for strings and other sundries. On the front of that is an additional criss-cross bungee cord which I'm sure you can find some use for. It looks nice anyway.

There are also two mesh pockets along the side of the neck, although I don't know quite what you could find to store in there, maybe a packet of spaghetti? For transportation this bag comes with a grab-handle on the front and another on the edge, it has a pair of strong, padded rucksack-style shoulder straps that are fully adjustable and attached to the case heavy duty metal clips, unlike the plastic ones found on some bags.

R.R.P. GBP 49.95
Colours : Fawn/Indigo/Sienna/Teal/Violet



Stylish, elliptical lines and vivid metallic colours make the Star-Pak visually striking, whilst it's tough construction and it's range of pockets give it it's functionality. The long oval pocket on the neck is spacious and deep, it is effectively emblazoned with the Ritter Eagle logo and mesh detailing. On the front there is just one large compartment which is accessible in two ways, via a U-shaped flap at the top, or through a side-zip. This pocket is easily big enough to swallow manuscripts and much more. As with the Chromo-Pak, all pockets are double-zipped but these zips have rubber pulls attached to them, rather than the fabric ones of the Chromo-Pak.

For transportation you have the expected tough side carrying handle as well as grab handles on either side of the neck. These grab-handles have been cleverly moulded to fit in with the elliptical design. Again there are the rucksack-type shoulder straps, but this time they fold neatly away into another elliptical recess when not in use. Nice touch I thought.

Finally a small pocket at the top of the neck, in the rear opens up to reveal a metal hook on a small chain, described as an aircraft hanger, which will take the weight of the fully-loaded bag without any danger of ripping. The Star-Pak is the best looking of the bags but I would like to see more pockets. Well if pockets is what you want, wait until you see the next one!

R.R.P. GBP 59.95
Colours : four available (see competition)




If the Star-Pak is the Limousine of the Ritter Range, then the Super-Pak is the deluxe people-carrier. You want storage, you got it! Either side of the neck is a long, double-zipped pocket with a velcro flap at the top. Put your strap or spare strings in here. Meanwhile the front of the case bears two large pockets where you can shove all your other gear and probably find room for members of your family too! The foremost pocket also has an organiser section, similar to that of the Chromo-Pak, this time it has a thoughtfully added clip-on key-ring to avoid those 2.00 a.m. hunts for the keys to the Transit.

As usual all pockets are double-zipped, this time with the rubber, logo-ed pulls. All the carrying options are there too, two grip handles, the normal side-handle and the padded shoulder straps. The best feature of the Star-Pak for me though was the optional internal panel which, when inserted, converts the Star-Pak into a double gig-bag, but is there really room for two instruments in there? Hang on, I'll go and check.....Yeah, as long as you're not trying to shove two wide-bodied acoustic basses in there, you've got no problems. Right, I'm off to a gig!

R.R.P. GBP 75.95
Colours : Astro-Blue, Fawn, Planet-Purple, Rocket-Red, Sienna, Space-Orange, Teal.



Much as I'd love to keep these bags for myself guys, those lovely people at Ritter Outdoor Limited have given us one of each of the three review models to give away in a competition. So if you'd like to grab yourself a brand new gig-bag just send us the answer to the following question :

The Star-Pak is available in four great colours, what are they?

Visit the Ritter website at and check out their range of products. Then e-mail us with your answer.  Send all contest entries to:

Mark the email “Ritter Gig Bag Giveaway” 

The contest expires January 20th, 2002 at 12 midnight EST. Winners will be announced in the February issue of Global Bass, which will give Andy lots of time to snag these great looking things and leave the country!


Andy Long, is a Weltian, which is something like a Martian but with less noticable antennae. His biting wit and his glaring overbite are 7 of his greatest assets. He can be reached by taking a long pointy stick and poking the trees above your house. That squeaking sound will be him.


Andy Long is our correspondent in the U.K. and the author of numerous articles in Global Bass for a number of issues. Andy will be continuing over 2001 with a series of interesting and provocative interviews with some of the UK's best and brightest bass players. 

Check out his official website at Third Bass


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