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First and foremost, kudos to Dan for a great design. It checks off many of the "wants" I have with a pack. I truly have enjoyed hiking with it.
Unfortunately, I ran into an issue on my last trip. I hope my experience is an anomaly, but the hip belt buckle broke on me. Thankfully I was at the trailhead and not on trail and I had my old pack with me. A simple reload and I was in the woods. I sure did miss my new pack on that trip though. Since Drop is unable to provide replacement buckles, I'll need to order another. I'll be sure to buy a spare so if it were to happen again on trail, I'll be able to replace it. Again though, hopefully I got a single defective buckle and Drop didn't end up with a bad batch.
Sorry to hear about this. The hipbelt buckle is a Duraflex buckle, which arguably the most premium/quality name in buckles. Did it simply crack on you? Or was it exposed to an impact? We've never had a buckle failure before.
Buckles are all unique, where you can't replace half of a buckle unless you have an exact match, but you can replace the entire buckle pretty easily. Any 1.5" side release buckle will work. They sell some here for $0.64:
One of the latching arms snapped off as I was tightening it. I don't know how it was compromised for that to happen, but it surely was a surprise.
Thanks for the link, I'll take a look.