Actually, I look upon Tom Bihn as the Federation. Cheap, Chinese-made junk is the Borg!
I just came from there, and I don't want to go back. :)
Congratulations! I'm immensely happy that this worked out so well for you!
It's raining here, and I was planning to snap my Super Ego pictures outside. I'll wait till it clears out.
So happy for you!
Welcome to The Federation!
Now, we want pictures! :)
I guess the pix will have to wait until either Sunday or Monday, depending on the weather.
Here's a question that, I imagine, may have never been asked before:
I carry a pair of "walkie-talkie" handheld personal 2-way radios in my backpack. Sometimes, I get a nasty surprise when I go to use them: the batteries are dead because the radios were sloshing around in the bottom of the bag, the power/volume knob was somehow bumped, and at least one of the radios ran down while unattended.
Do Tom Bihn backapcks have some kind of carrying system that can better house these radios so they don't slosh around and accidentally get turned on?
My first thought would be to get a Ruc's Sack sometime down the road. They are half the price of a Brain Bag and I think a Ruc may have just the right capacity.
I'm not sure about the size and shape of your walkie-talkies but my first impulse is to suggest an organizer cube of some kind (like a clear quarter packing cube). Putting them in securely might prevent them from getting turned on, and you wouldn't have to buy a whole bag, instead you would have a system that would move easily from bag to bag.
The Smart Alec might work well - either use the pockets on sides of the bag or the pockets in the bag's "lid". Organiser pouches attached to the o-rings might also work, as Loki suggests.
And now, dear friends, we are gathered here today to celebrate a successful milestone in this long and tortured thread. I finally received my Super Ego with Standard Shoulder Strap and Horizontal Fruedian Slip late Friday afternoon. It was too late to snap any photos then, and it rained all day yesterday. The sun popped out just long enough this afternoon before setting in the Autumn sky to make some halfway decent photos possible. To wit:
This is me (would I lie about something like that?) posing with my new Tom Bihn SuperEgo, mostly loaded by sans laptop. I even found a new home for my umbrella.
Here's the Super Ego, sans vain owner, its brand-spanking-new premium nylon sheathing and reflector strip glistening in the setting sunlight.
Here's the "inboard view" of the Super Ego, already stocked with magazines and catalogues, plus a standard yellow Letter-size writing tablet (don't leave home without one!)
And here is a peak at the inside of the zippered laptop compartment, complete with (currently empty) Brain Cell and Horizontal Freudian Slip.
And here's the slip, after having been slipped out of the Super Ego. Already stocked with plenty of boring stuff, like pens, ruler, calculator, paper, etc.
And here's a snapshot of the outboard flap-access compartment, flapped open. This area is now home to all the laptop accessories that were at home in the old Kensington Saddlebag. Their arrangement here is by no means final, and by no means satisfactory. I have to figure out what I'm going to do with everything in all that myriad of pockets.
That's why I do not want to consider this thread closed quite yet. I'll have to return here to continue the discussion when it comes time to inquire about pouches and the like for storage. More on this later.
Walkie talkies are found in a wide range of sizes.
Would you mind posting pictures of yours, next to a popular object for example a book or a CD/DVD case.
This way we can compare with the objects we have at home and can fit into
Accessories with Clear Windows
Clear Quarter Organizer Cube (as Loki suggested)
3D Clear Organizer Cube
Clear Bottom Tall Yarn Stuff Sack
Clear Bottom Yarn Stuff Sack
Snake Charmer (Accessory with mesh window)
All fabric Accessories.
Having your talkie walkies in one of those accessories will enable you to transport them securely by themselves and move them from bag to bag in their own little bag.
Most of the accessories above are available in a wide range of color and you can color code your belonging.
For example, I use a Grape Kit for needlework accessories, a Clear Quarter Cube for essentials and a small Sapphire Pouch for nickle and dimes.
Maverick has much better examples of organizing with Pouches in all of his videos. :)
In this thread, I show pictures of my current foreign-made cheap-but-not-so-cheap backpack (purchased at Wal Mart, and starting to disintegrate) and you can see one of the talkies down in the bottom of the bag (sixth photo down).
While I have not ruled out the Smart Alec, I'm leaning more toward the Ruc's Sack becuase (1: it's the lowest-priced Tom Bihn backpack available, (2: I like its simplicity and small size, and (3: I do not usually carry very much in my backpack, and (4: if I do get into carrying more in a backpack, there are always other larger bags like the Brain Bag, Smart Alec, and Red Oxx's super-expensive Airborne C-Ruck that I could buy to suppliment a Tom Bihn Ruc's Sack.
You are right about the Synapse and this way you wouldn't have to worry about buying extra Pouches or other accessories because of all the pockets.
I am just telling you about their availability because my Tom Bihn Bags are the ones with big compartments; Large Cafe Bags, Brain Bags and Swifts.
Those bags are perfect for people who, like me, enjoy the bags within bags and even pouches inside other accessories set up.
Here's a better picture of the walkie-talkies:
That should give a clearer idea of their size and shape.
When I flew to Washington, DC in March, I took my Kensington Saddlebag to carry my laptop, accessories and papers, plus I took a brand-new folding garment bag (cheap, foreign-made) that failed (zipper burst) just before checking out of the hotel before returning home. See trip photos here.
The garment bag was an obvious department store cheapie, made overseas and not built to last (even one trip).
Here is what I carried in the garment bag:
My shaving/toiletries kit (in ziploc bag)
Full suit: sport coat, ties, 2 pr. dress slacks, 2 dress shirts, 1 pr. nice shoes
Undies for 3 days & 2 pr. dress socks
Regular "civvie" clothes for return trip: jeans, t-shirt, regular socks
Trash bag to house "dirty" clothes after they had been worn
Since the hotel had a hair dryer and its own toiletries, I found I was in good shape in that department
To be fair, I did carry a little more on the trip back home than I did coming to Washington; I naturally picked up newspapers, literature, a couple of small souvenirs, but the bag was by no means stuffed. And some of these fit in the Kensignton, not the ill-fated garment bag.
NOTE: I have no immediate travel plans or funds to fly anywhere. That having been said, I will eventually travel to Washington again or some other cities, at some point down the road. This gives me time to think about what I would want to replace that miserable garment bag, which I returned to the department store that sold it to me.
I have spent some time looking at other sites, including some interesting discussions on "One Bag, One World". I have not chosen anything, nor will I for some time. But I have decided that it would be a good idea to compare certain bags to see which one(s?) might fit my needs.
In March, I was in DC from the 9th until the wee hours of the 12th when I had to catch my flight. So I stayed there three nights. I had to be dressed in my suit for 2 days. I did not do any laundry during my stay, and was gone from the hotel for so long each day that by the time I got back each night, none of their services were available anyway. I decided to use my March trip to DC as a model for what a future trip might look like in terms of what I would take and how long I would stay, just for sake of argument.
I have considered at least four possibilities of what could replace the cheapie disaster of a garment bag:
1: MEI/Genuine Gear's Executive Overnighter
2: Tom Bihn's Aeronaut
3: Tom Bihn's Tri-Star
4: Tom Bihn's Western Flyer
I already replaced the aging Kensington Saddlebag with a Tom Bihn Super Ego.
For sake of argument, the Western Flyer seems a bit too small, so we'll put that on the back burner for now. I read a great article on the "One Bag, One World" site about MEI's Executive Overnighter, but let's set that aside right now as well.
Let's look at the Aeronaut and the Tri-Star. I'd like to hear from owners on how they differ, both in terms of carrying certain travel gear and in terms of how they are handled. Does anyone here own both? If so, how do you use one as opposed to the other?