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King Kong unfiltered – Two wheels vs four wheels: is it all a big carry-on? (Part 2)

When you’re buying new luggage, especially carry-on, the biggest question is usually whether to get two or four-wheeled luggage.

Four-wheel ‘spinner’ rolling luggage is supposed to make it easier to manoeuvre. I emphasise ‘supposed’ because the spinners have their own unique set of annoyances. Further, this perceived improvement in manoeuvrability comes at a significant cost.

The downsides of four-wheel spinners:

  • reduced internal space
  • more exposed and therefore more easily damaged
  • won’t stand still
  • more expensive!


External wheels take up a lot of space

The wheels on spinners stick out a long way. When you put you bag in the “sizer” at the airport, the wheels are included in the dimensions.

On the other hand, with a two-wheel carry-on, the wheels can be designed as cut-outs in the shell, meaning you’re not “wasting” any of those last precious inches.

Four-wheeled luggage can mean a large loss of space as you can see below.

4 wheels vs 2 wheels

With a carry-on restriction of 21” x 14” x 9”(52cm x 35cm x 22.5cm), the four-wheeled luggage loses 10-15% of internal space.  When you’re trying your hardest to avoid checking luggage in, this is a huge amount: approximately 4-5 liters, or the equivalent of two pairs of shoes and a couple of pants.

Exposed wheels are vulnerable wheels

Wheels are generally the first things to break on luggage, and having exposed spinner wheels is a recipe for short-lived luggage.

We want to make the toughest, most durable luggage possible with two roller wheels housed within the case, protecting them from the beatings that luggage inevitably takes.

Four-wheeled luggage won’t stand still

This is one of the most annoying traits of 4-wheeled luggage. They are all well and good in perfectly flat airport transit area, but as soon as you are on a train, tram, shuttle bus or hill, a 4-wheeler will develop a mind of its own!

Even with all these negatives, 4-wheel spinner luggage still costs around 30% more than 2-wheel luggage.

For all these reasons, we’ve decided on the two-wheel design. It’s tougher, more durable, less expensive, and most important, has more packing space!


If you want to join us on this journey to build better luggage – and get early-bird access when we launch it, enter your name and email below.