Introducing Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon

This is the red of my dreams; the red I’ve quested after for years. It’s a deep red, rich and dark. A hint of black, and perhaps a bit of blue, distinguish our previous Crimson 1050d ballistic nylon from our new Cardinal 1050d ballistic nylon. Working with the dye works to create this color was no simple feat, and we rejected countless iterations of the new red before finally approving Cardinal two months ago.

After choosing our new color, we had several brainstorming sessions to come up with its name. Many would call it “Cherry” or “Stanford Red”. I thought it’d be funny to call it “Bolshevik Red” but more reasoned voices prevailed. Someone (we can’t remember who) suggested Cardinal, which is defined as a deep, vivid red. Perfect. And it’s the name of a train. Even better. (Our Empire Builder and Zephyr briefcases are also named after trains.)

We’re excited to offer Cardinal for pre-order in the following bags: Aeronaut, Tri-Star, Breve for iPad/iPad 2, ID, Empire Builder, Kit, Super Ego, Co-Pilot, and Checkpoint Flyer.

In the process of choosing Cardinal, which is our fifth color of 1050d U.S. ballistic nylon, we came up with a sixth color that everyone agreed we couldn’t leave behind. We’ll be unveiling 1050d Ballistic Nylon Color #6 next Tuesday. Stay tuned!
– Tom

Introducing TOM BIHN Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon
Our previous red – Crimson – is on the left. Cardinal is on the right.

Introducing TOM BIHN Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon
The Tri-Star in Cardinal/Steel.

Introducing TOM BIHN Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon
Handles of the Cardinal Tri-Star cut and ready to sew.

Introducing TOM BIHN Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon
The Kit.

Introducing TOM BIHN Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon
The Kit in Cardinal, with a Vulcana Hemp/Recycled Rubber background.

Introducing TOM BIHN Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon
A roll of the Cardinal 1050d ballistic nylon in the factory.

Introducing TOM BIHN Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon
A close-up of the ballistic nylon yarns.

A Surprise Tomorrow

We’re going to announce something new tomorrow, so keep an eye on the blog, Facebook, and Twitter. Here’s a hint.

A Surprise Tomorrow

New colors of Ultrasuede® Screen Cloth: Lapis and Asphalt

We’ve added two new colors of our Ultrasuede® Screen Cloth: Lapis Blue and Asphalt Grey. Both are available for order now and ship within one business day. The Ultrasuede® Screen Cloth gently yet effectively cleans glossy surfaces (such as those of the iPad or iPhone) of smudges.

TOM BIHN New colors of Ultrasuede® Screen Cloth: Lapis and Asphalt

TOM BIHN New colors of Ultrasuede® Screen Cloth: Lapis and Asphalt

TOM BIHN New colors of Ultrasuede® Screen Cloth: Lapis and Asphalt

Photos of the ID by innerweather

Photos of the ID by innerweather

See innerweather’s photos of the ID via Flickr. See also: the ID.

In stock: Ristretto for 11″ MacBook Air, Snake Charmer

The Ristretto for the 11″ MacBook Air is now in-stock in all colors: Black/Steel, Cocoa/Cayenne, Navy/Steel, Steel/Wasabi, and Olive/Cayenne.

The Snake Charmer is now in-stock in all colors: Black, Steel, and Cayenne.

Photos: Aeronaut, Kit in Navy 1050d + pre-order now

TOM BIHN Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy

TOM BIHN Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy

Available for pre-order in our new Navy 1050d ballistic nylon:

Aeronaut in Navy/Solar, Navy/Iberian (Shipping by early June!)

Tri-Star in Navy/Solar, Navy/Iberian

Kit

Little Swift in Navy/Navy

Super Ego in Black/Navy/Cayenne

Swift in Navy/Steel

Checkpoint Flyer in Black/Navy (13″, 15″, and 17″ sizes only)

TOM BIHN Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy

TOM BIHN Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy

TOM BIHN Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy

Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy

TOM BIHN Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy

We’ve received shipment of our new custom 1050d ballistic nylon color: Navy. A rich, deeply hued blue, Navy is the result of months of back-and-forth with our fabric mill, ensuring the color met our exacting standards. We’ll introduce various bags for pre-order in Navy tomorrow (there may even be a few photos of actual bags to show you) but wanted to give you a sneak peak at the new color today.

TOM BIHN Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy

More about our custom-produced fabrics:
We use only the best quality 1050 denier ballistic nylon. It’s made in the U.S.A and finished (dyed and coated) to our specifications. This cloth is available off-the-shelf in Black, but because there’s virtually no domestic demand for colors, colors other than black are made only to order. The minimum quantity we need to have dyed (a “dye lot”) is relatively quite large, especially for a small company like ours that enjoys offering a wide variety of colors. Currently, that’s over 21 different colors and fabrics, and we plan to add more.

TOM BIHN Introducing our custom 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy
Candi, Irma, and Tom inspect our new Navy fabric.

The high-tenacity nylon yarns from which 1050d ballistic nylon are woven can be very difficult to dye, compared to, for example, the standard nylon typically found in imported 1680 “ballistic”. (One of our fabric mills tested our 1050d ballistic nylon against the 1680 stuff; see the results of that test here.) We’ve had to reject more than a few batches of 1050d because it was streaky, too soft, or simply not the exact color we envisioned. And because we can’t just run down to the corner fabric store and pick up a roll in some stock color, we’ve decided not to announce new colors until we actually have them in-house and they’ve met our strict standards.

We’re very impressed with the quality of our new 1050d ballistic nylon in Navy and plan to share more photos with you over the next weeks as various bags become available in the new fabric.

New, Ships Now: Handle Loop

The Handle Loop provides an easy way to add a wrist loop to the Side Effect,
3D Clear Organizer Cube, other TOM BIHN accessory bags, or just your keys or Swiss Army knife. $2. Available for order and ships within one business day.

TOM BIHN New, Ships Now: Handle Loop

TOM BIHN RNew, Ships Now: Handle Loop

New, Ships Now: RFID Blocking Passport Pouch

Our new RFID Blocking Passport Pouch is designed to carry and protect your passport or other sensitive documents while traveling. With an exterior of light-weight, cut-resistant Dyneema/nylon ripstop fabric and an interior lining of special metalized fabric, the Passport Pouch will effectively block detection or reading of RFID chips. $25. Available for order now and ships within one business day. In colors Steel, Ultraviolet, and Iberian.


TOM BIHN RFID Blocking Passport Pouch

TOM BIHN RFID Blocking Passport Pouch

TOM BIHN RFID Blocking Passport Pouch

TOM BIHN RFID Blocking Passport Pouch
Inside-out view shows the special metalized fabric

Updates to the Brain Bag (and Smart Alec and Synapse)

We’ve added a heavy-duty clip to the front of the Brain Bag, just under the top-most zippered pouch. It’s a handy spot to clip a water bottle, umbrella or even an insulated coffee mug. Because it has a low profile, it’s not in the way when you’re not using it.

We’ve also added a hydration tube clip to all three backpacks: the Brain Bag, the Smart Alec and the Synapse. If you use any of these bags for hiking or cycling, you’ll appreciate the ability to keep the business end of your hydration system conveniently attached to the shoulder strap. It works with most of the popular hydration sacks and fits tubes up to 3/8″ or 10mm. It attaches to the vertical sternum strap adjustment strap on the shoulder straps, and is easily removable if you don’t need it, or if you just want to move it to the opposite strap.

Updates to the Brain Bag (and Smart Alec and Synapse)
The new clip on the front of the Brain Bag.

Updates to the Brain Bag (and Smart Alec and Synapse)
The new hydration tube clip.

Updates to the Brain Bag (and Smart Alec and Synapse)
A Lifefactory bottle in Graphite clipped to the front of the Brain Bag.