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  1. #1
    mjb
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    Western Flyer as a briefcase?

    Just curious: is anyone here using the Western Flyer as a briefcase?

    When I'm traveling for work, I carry a MacBook Air 11" (in a Cache), a portable Canon printer, their related chargers/cables/etc, and a few file folders of documents, and spare paper.

    I own an Empire Builder and love it, but I'm considering replacing it with a WF -- the thought being that the WF would work both as a briefcase AND be more useful as a suitcase when I'm on personal trips (and don't need to haul around my portable office).

  2. #2
    keb
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    I have both. Used my Western Flyer as a briefcase before I got the Empire Builder. It was good. Just got the EB because I was too lazy to keep switching when I stopped traveling with my laptop.
    Western Flyer (Crimson); 4Z Brain Cell; Swift (wife); Empire Builder (Black/Steel/Wasabi); Aeronaut (Black/Steel); Side Effect (Black), 3D Cube (Olive); lots of cubes/pouches/kit; Synapse (Navy/Solar); Smart Alec (Cardinal/Steel)

  3. #3
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    I'm curious...

    Has anyone tried to use either the Western Flyer and/or the Tri-Star as overnight luggage and a briefcase at the same time?
    Owner of: Super Ego briefcase (Black / Indigo / Steel) with Reflective Strip, Brain Cell (Steel), Horizontal Freudian Slip, various Organizer Pouches and Key Straps, and a Side Effect (Black / Wassabi) worn as a belt-style hip-pack.

  4. #4
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    That is one of my plans MtnMan with my Tri-star but I have actually not had a trip since I got it. Sad that a new bag would make you want to travel!

    I will let you know how it works out but it may be a week or two...

  5. #5
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    I've sort of done that, MtnMan. On an overnight trip I can fit everything I need in the front compartment (toiletries, change of underwear and socks, pj pants and tee shirt, and a shirt). In the back, I put my 15" MacBookPro in its Brain Cell, along with charger, adapters, etc. in the two pockets. I use a large organizer pouch to carry papers.

    I've brought the WF with me to meetings, or sometimes just take the Brain Cell. One of the things I really like about Tom Bihn bags is the flexibility of how they can be used together to give you lots of choices of how to carry things on a trip.

    BTW, the combination of the WF and Brain Cell is terrific at TSA checkpoints: unzip the top of the back compartment and the Brain Cell's top closure is right there to pull up and grab the laptop.
    Last edited by wennefer; 03-05-2011 at 02:57 PM.
    Owner of Crimson/Steel Western Flyer, Forest/Steel Zephyr, Olive/Cayenne Ristretto for iPad, Olive/Cork/Steel and Cardinal/Hemp/Steel Imago, Plum/Wasabi Side Effect, Linen/Steel and Conifer/Steel SCB, Steel Breve, Plum/Black Swift, Steel FJN, Horizontal Freudian Slip, black Brain Cell, Iberian Packing Cube Backpack, Ultraviolet Packing Cube Shoulder Bag, and various organizer pouches, caches, and other odds and ends.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffmac View Post
    That is one of my plans MtnMan with my Tri-star but I have actually not had a trip since I got it. Sad that a new bag would make you want to travel!

    I will let you know how it works out but it may be a week or two...
    When you do, please post photos!

    Thanks!

    --The Mountain Man
    Owner of: Super Ego briefcase (Black / Indigo / Steel) with Reflective Strip, Brain Cell (Steel), Horizontal Freudian Slip, various Organizer Pouches and Key Straps, and a Side Effect (Black / Wassabi) worn as a belt-style hip-pack.

  7. #7
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    I use mine as both - I take many overnight trips to NY, DC, etc...pack a change of clothes into the bag into one half, and the computer and files in the other half.

    It's not the most professional looking thing around (I wouldn't take it to a big meeting with potential clients) but neither is really anything else Tom Bihn makes. So, I think it's as good as anything else in the line, for sure.

  8. #8
    mjb
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    I work for rock and roll bands, so a lack of professionalism isn't a bad thing.

    Thanks everyone!

  9. #9
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    @mjb...After packing up my Tristar with the mentality of using it as both briefcase and overnight bag I think I would miss the organizational stuff if I scaled down to a WF.

    Of course if you O ring a bunch of pouches in the section for your laptop I guess that would cover it but I definitely used all of the zippered pouches in my Tristar and could have used another one. Or you might want to add a Freudian Slip...

    I put some bad pics in the packing list forum if you want to peek MtnMan

    By the way MJB who are you out with? I am on the other end of the business (selling pro audio gear for Sennheiser and QSC among others) but I know a bunch of people in the biz...
    Last edited by jeffmac; 03-06-2011 at 03:17 PM.

  10. #10
    mjb
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    Yeah, I had considered a Freudian Slip. I'm going to try going without and see if I go crazy without it.

    Right now I'm tour manager/front-of-house for the bands Superchunk and Destroyer.

  11. #11
    mjb
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    Following up, I received my Western Flyer a few days ago (the rear-pocket model), but after a couple of hours of test-packing, I decided to stick with my Empire Builder after all -- structure of the EB is much more appropriate for what I have to carry.

    I am going to order a WF with backpack straps, though. I loved the size/style for a regular suitcase.

  12. #12
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    Thanks for reporting back. I am also considering getting an Empire Builder and/or a Western Flyer. Question on the EB: in some photos it appears as if there is a space in the main compartment adjacent to the place where papers and folders go. Is that true? The dimensions of the bag are obviously larger than required for 8.5x11 sheets. Could a pair of shoes or something like that be stored in the main compartment next to papers and be safely segregated?

  13. #13
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    I got the Tri-star for this. It works pretty well; even for a 5-day trip, I can fit computer and a little business stuff plus clothing, without bringing a separate briefcase. It's not the world's classiest-looking briefcase, but a black Tri-star looks pretty reasonable in a client office, and I think it's much easier (and more professional) than bringing a briefcase plus a rollaboard or other luggage to store or lug around the client's office.

    I do wish the Tri-star had more organization for the business and computer stuff - adapters, batteries, notebooks, files, pens, etc. The freudian slip is intended for some of this, but does not look like it fits my particular needs; maybe I can make some modifications, or figure out how to pack better.


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