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Tom Bihn Forums: Community discussion on travel bags, laptop bags, and backpacks. Tom Bihn has been designing and making bags since 1972. The best materials and innovative construction.

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  1. #1
    Registered User
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    Apr 2008
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    Copenhagen, Denmark
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    Tri-Star - Eight month review

    About eight months ago I received my Tri-Star and am currently using it for a business trip (to Moscow of all places - minus 16 degrees celcius right now).

    Packed for two nights, it contains a suit; two shirts; ties; change of underwear and socks; a 3D clear organizer cube with shaver, tooth brush, etc.; a 14" ThinkPad with charger; a presenter; a book (The Holmes Affair by Graham Moore - halfway in and can strongly recommend it); iPhone charger; keys and the cord zipper pulls that came with the bag that I've been meaning to install ever since.

    It stilll have plenty of available space if I wanted to bring an additional book or more clothing (could probably have fitted the gym clothes I really should have brought).

    During the last eight month I've been using it on countless trips and have always found it easy to pack, easy to find what I need while on the road and (important for a bag that is not a trolley) easy to carry with the Absolute Shoulder Strap no matter how full it is. Also, it still looks pretty much like the day I got it.

    As always a great product from Tom Bihn (this is my third bag) and strongly recommended.

    P.S If you are wondering how good the Absolutely Shoulder Strap is: I once forgot my laptop at our local office in Baltics and didn't discover it until I had to take it out for airport security - there really wasn't that much of a weight difference!

  2. #2
    Registered User Maria's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
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    Toronto, Canada
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    439
    Great review! I'm looking to get a Tri-Star soon...just debating the colour!

  3. #3
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    Apr 2008
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    Copenhagen, Denmark
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    Mine is Steel/Solar - great combination and the light inside color makes it easy to find stuff.

  4. #4
    Registered User Maria's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
    Location
    Toronto, Canada
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    439
    I was originally planning on a black with steel interior. However, I bought the Co-Pilot in that colour combination and realize the darker intrior can be a bother to see things inside. (Granted the bag is smaller and does not zip all around.) I thought the solar dyneema would be too "bright"... but I now think that would be a good interior shade. I don't want a Crimson or Indigo - too much personality for me! And wonder depending on my mood - would the solar again be too "bright"? Same with the Iberian colour.

  5. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
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    333
    I love-love-love the Solar in my steel-solar Tristar. When I first saw it, I thought it would be way too bright, but in use it's excellent, particularly in that middle pocket. The two outer sections zip all the way open to lay flat, so it's easy to spot renegade items trying to evade detection, but the middle section does not. That's where I find that the odd loose change, pens, ticket stub, lipstick, or whatever, tend to collect. Solar makes finding them a breeze, even in hotel rooms with lousy lighting.

    Of course, you could always wait for the introduction of Ultraviolet...what a gorgeous but not-too-loud color!!
    Western Flyer (crimsom) with Absolute strap, Zephyr (black), Medium Cafe Bag (steel/olive), Shop Bags (solar, steel), Large Cafe bag (navy/cayenne), Small café bag (forest), Tristars (steel/solar and indigo/solar),Aeronaut (steel), Side Effects (old skool black cordura, olive parapack), Imagos (steel, cork, wasabi, and aubergine, hemp, steel), Dyneema Western Flyer (Nordic/Steel) and miscellaneous packing cubes, pouches, etc.

  6. #6
    Registered User Maria's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
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    Toronto, Canada
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    439
    Flitcraft - that is what I was thinking when I saw the new ultraviolet shade, wondering about future larger bag interiors. Well, I still have to save up a bit more for my Tri-Star - as the shipping charge to Canada adds up - I have to save up for a larger order all at once. It makes the anticipation of an order all the more challenging!

    You make an excellent point about that deep middle pocket - darker shades would make finding something a little more of a challenge. Still, the ultraviolet may be a nice option from the solar. Well, I still have a Western-Flyer on my wish list too!

  7. #7
    Registered User
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    Feb 2011
    Location
    Boulder, Colorado
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    182
    Maria,

    My experience with a Crimson/Steel Tri-Star is a counterpoint to Flitcraft's with respect to the middle section - the dark interior of the Steel lining makes it a little more challenging to find the detritus that gets stuffed in there on the average business trip.

    I'll add that the three front pockets can also be bottomless pits. When the bag is packed and the front section zipped up, I usually find things by touch rather than sight. The colour of the lining makes no difference in that situation. But when unpacked or front section unzipped, I'd hazard a guess that the Solar would make it easier than Steel to spot something hiding in the crevasse. Iberian and Ultraviolet are probably somewhere in between the two extremes.
    Last edited by lotuseater; 02-13-2011 at 09:59 PM. Reason: Clarification on original comment

  8. #8
    Registered User Maria's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
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    439
    Thank you Lotuseater. I wouldn't mind black with solar interior if they made it...and yet the steel and solar would work as I prefer more of an understated exterior.

    Well, I'll wait and see what new colour Tom may have in mind to replace the Indigo. By then, I should be ready to place a larger order. And wait too to see photos of the ultraviolet or iberian interior with black.

    Too many choices!


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