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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
    Forum Member bchaplin's Avatar
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    Sep 2010
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    The Orphaned Smart Alec

    I have to admit, my pretty but rarely-used Smart Alec doesn't get out much. It is a bit too large for a commuting bag (for me), and I bought it with the thought that I could use it on gym days, but usually I can fit my workout clothes into something smaller. It is a good weekend bag, when I need it.

    However, today I had a box I wanted to bring with me to work, and it was raining. Voila! The box happened to fit perfectly, and because of its barrel shape, the Smart Alec is perfectly comfortable to carry even when stuffed full. A duffel would have worked as well, but this was actually easier to navigate with in the rain.

    Here you can see the Smart Alec on its way to the post office.

    Name:  smart alec copy.JPG
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    For a while I was thinking of selling it, but for its role as un uncomplaining worker-bag, always ready when I need to carry the odd-sized item, the Smart Alec gets to keep its job.
    ----
    Please bring back the Portable Culture patch!

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator
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    Jul 2004
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    @bchaplin Your Nordic Smart Alec looks beautiful.

  3. #3
    Registered User daisy's Avatar
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    Mar 2011
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    We purchased a smart alec to be a cargo bag - ferrying boxes and various odd shaped items between our storage box for our online store and the post office. It is very good for this.
    List under construction ....

  4. #4
    Forum Member bchaplin's Avatar
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    I know it is a great hiking bag, too. I wish I did more hiking! Perhaps if I lived in the Pacific Northwest.
    ----
    Please bring back the Portable Culture patch!

  5. #5
    Forum Member monkeylady's Avatar
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    Jun 2013
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    Quote Originally Posted by bchaplin View Post
    I know it is a great hiking bag, too. I wish I did more hiking! Perhaps if I lived in the Pacific Northwest.
    Well........we could start a sect.
    The stockpile keeps growing...I'm in serious trouble.

  6. #6
    Forum Member nukediver's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by monkeylady View Post
    Well........we could start a sect.
    The "Order of the Nordic Smart Alec" - count me in, I've already got the bag!

  7. #7
    Forum Member monkeylady's Avatar
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    Jun 2013
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    But, I don't one of those...is that the price of admission, or can I join anyway?
    The stockpile keeps growing...I'm in serious trouble.

  8. #8
    Forum Member bchaplin's Avatar
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    Now I'm confused, @monkeylady. What sect were you starting...? Those who want to live in the Pacific Northwest but are stuck on the East Coast?
    ----
    Please bring back the Portable Culture patch!

  9. #9
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    Sep 2012
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    Great picture of your loaded Smart Alec, @bchaplin!

    Similar to what you wrote, the fact that the Smart Alec is the only backpack bag in my stable that can carry bulky items (not even the Brain Bag, not other backpacks I have) is what convinced me to keep my Smart Alec too. For me, it saved so much hassle when I needed to bring a subwoofer to an event. It fit exactly in the Smart Alec and ONLY my Smart Alec.
    I have used it as my backpack EDC since then and really found a "groove" when using it - even when not carrying bulky items.

    Here are a few pics of my Smart Alec as "Cargo" bag:

    Fully loaded with Subwoofer and other items:

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    What my Smart Alec was holding (I could not believe I could fit so much in it):

    Name:  DSC03847 (1170x1280).jpg
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    Cheers!
    Last edited by tpnl; 04-02-2014 at 09:49 AM.
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