In stock: Clear Quarter Packing Cube

In stock: Clear Quarter Packing Cube

In stock: Clear Quarter Packing Cube

Clear Quarter Packing Cube — $30 and available in Steel, Iberian, or Ultraviolet. Ships within one business day.

In stock: Aeronaut, Ristretto for 13″ MacBook Pro or Air,

Aeronaut, all colors
Ristretto for 13″ MacBook Pro or Air, all colors

This week, we shipped backorders for the Synapse, Checkpoint Flyer, and Aeronaut Packing Cubes

And backorders for the Empire Builder and Citizen Canine will ship within the next few weeks.

iMore: Tom Bihn new Ristretto messenger bag review

Read the review by Rene Ritchie on iMore.

Tom has a down jacket (not a skeleton) in his closet

Tom Bihn made down jackets when he was 16

An order came in today with this comment:

“I found your website through Google, but I knew Tom Bihn as he went to school with my kids and made down jackets and a comforter for us.”

We told Tom about Mary’s comment (he was out working in the factory) and he included the note in the photo above in her order. Tom was 16 when he made the down jackets and comforter for Mary’s family.

About This Particular Macintosh reviews the Camera I-O

“In November 2011, I embarked upon a secret mission to east Africa. I used a legitimate trip to adopt our family’s third child as my cover. The mission? To field test a classified piece of gear, suitable for secret agents and civilian travelers alike. The gear was an unannounced product from Tom Bihn, and last month, the good folks there decided to lift the veil of secrecy. The Camera I-O was revealed to the world, and the best part is that it won’t cost you “one miiiiiiiillion dollars” to obtain it.”

Read the full review by Christopher Turner at About This Particular Macintosh.

Camera I-O review by About This Particular Macintosh

ATPM review of the TOM BIHN Camera I-O

Light travel experts weigh in on packing techniques

kjm3579 posted in the TOM BIHN Forums that s/he was ready to buy an Aeronaut but was told online that it wasn’t ideal for the bundle packing method because it doesn’t have tie-down/compression straps (not accurate; Tom added removable tie-down/compression straps to the Aeronaut in 2010) and that it doesn’t have much “flat space” (this is why the Tri-Star, with its ample flat space, might be a better option for those who want to bundle pack.)

Frank II, owner and author of One Bag, One World (OBOW) replied:
“As the owner of a site dedicated to light, one bag travel, I can tell you my main bag is the Aeronaut and I travel wrinkle free. I also don’t bundle pack as I find it to be the least efficient way to pack. And contrary to the bundle packing cult, there are other ways to pack wrinkle free.”

moriond posted an excellent collection of links to other forum threads in which techniques such as rolling and bundle packing are discussed as well as the use of Packing Cubes to keep clothes wrinkle-free.

JLE and peregrina noted that Packing Cubes prevent their clothes from being wrinkled in the Aeronaut.

Lani, owner and author of The Travelite FAQ, posted:
“There are two big disadvantages to the bundle method (and I’ve read the book, which for the most part is pretty good):

#1: It prevents wrinkles… BUT ONLY FOR THE OUTER GARMENTS IN THE HUG/BUNDLE!! If you aren’t careful, the inside garments can easily fold into each other and get just as wrinkled as always.

#2: You wind up with one huge lump. You can’t get to an inner garment without unfurling the entire bundle. What this means is that when you get to your hotel/destination, you HAVE to unpack everything. Put them in dresser drawers or hang them, but they cannot stay in your carry-on.”

Read the full thread in the TOM BIHN Forums. Do you bundle pack? Roll? Use Packing Cubes? Join the discussion and share your experience with wrinkle-free packing for ultralight, one bag travel.

Removable tie-down or compression straps are included with the Aeronaut travel bag

Photo: Seattle factory continues to surprise

Earlier today in the post Photos: Synapse continues to surprise we mentioned that backorders for the Synapse would ship in the next 2-3 weeks. Hours later, our Seattle factory crew surprised us with many of the Synapse backpacks needed to fill those backorders — that’s weeks ahead of schedule. All backorders for the Synapse are expected to be filled by the end of this week.

TOM BIHN Synapse back in stock

Photos: Synapse continues to surprise

Posted by Jon ‘Geo’ Camp in the TOM BIHN Forums:

“TIL (Today I Learned) just how handy those side pockets on the Synapse are, and how much attention went into their design.

After 5 months of ownership, and always taking off the backpack to access the sides (since this is how every backpack I’ve ever owned had been) I was thinking about the backpack and how I see everyone else here in Japan with their shouldered-bum-bags (fanny packs?) and how they just swing them over and have access.

Today I learned that by swinging the backpack under your shoulder, the side pockets are the EXACT SHAPE to pull open with one hand, grab whatever you need, and close again. Mind = BLOWN.”

Read the full thread “Synapse continues to surprise”.

The TOM BIHN Synapse continues to surprise

Note: the Synapse is currently backordered in all colors. Our Seattle factory is working on the next batch of Synapse and backorders are expected to ship in the next 2-3 weeks.

Tom’s review of The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau

At the TOM BIHN factory in Seattle, the crew gets a first look at The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau
At the TOM BIHN factory in Seattle, June, Maria, Ying Xue, Fong, Lisa, Lee, and Sau Ling get a first look at The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau. We’re one of the companies featured in the book.

Chris Guillebeau’s new book The $100 Startup (#4 on Amazon as we type this) is not only an excellent primer for anyone who is dreaming of making the leap to being self-employed, but it’s also a great book for those of us who have been at it for a while and are hungry for a new point of view on business-as-usual. And I don’t say all this just because TOM BIHN is one of the featured businesses: I could hardly put Chris’s book down. It’s full of inspiring stories of the successes (and sometimes failures) of entrepreneurs, some who knew all along they wanted to own their own business, some who came to self-employment serendipitously — often by losing their 9–5 job.

Chris is a keen observer of business and of human nature: from dozens of interviews and the results of hundreds of surveys, Chris has distilled the essential questions you need to ask yourself before you start your own company. And if you answer yes, this book will give a foundation to begin the hard work and fun that’s in store for you.

He emphasizes that all of it can often be done with a pretty minimal investment (yes, sometimes for $100 or less). For me it was borrowing $900 from my brother to buy a new industrial sewing machine — since then it’s been largely “bootstrapping” ourselves up and growing the business with the growing demand. It’s been said that a new business is far more likely to die of indigestion than of starvation — in other words, staying a little hungry and lean will keep you smart and efficient. The businesses in The $100 Startup are living proof of this.

The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau

The $100 Startup is not a road map to guaranteed financial success, but rather a how-to guide for your own off-trail adventure into the world of self-employment.

TOM BIHN in the $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau

The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau is available now through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Your Local Bookstore.

Watch The $100 Startup trailer and learn more at

And tell us about your small business, the one you’re going to start, or ask us questions about ours: join the discussion on The $100 Startup in the TOM BIHN Forums.

In stock: Camera I-O

TOM BIHN Camera I-O bag

That was fast: the Camera I-O is back in-stock weeks ahead of schedule and is now ready to ship within one business day.