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Thread: Questions for other extreme light packers

  1. #1
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    Questions for other extreme light packers

    I have a two and a half week trip coming up soon, and I posted on another threat when I "practice packed" for the trip in my new Synapse, and had room to spare! I will need a little more room when I go once each year on a trip to Tanzania for a month ( I go in June), and for an upcoming trip next year with some children and grandchildren. I was hoping for a Western Flyer for longer trips, but the colors aren't right for me, and there doesn't seem to be a used one for sale with backpack straps. On my trip this month, I'll be in Seattle, and plan to visit the Tom Bihn showroom! I've been wondering, since I'm not getting the Western Flyer, should I pack the Synapse and a bigger personal bag for longer trips, or should I consider the Smart Alec, which has the same capacity as the Western Flyer? I won't take any more clothes - the extras will be camera and charger, adapter, travel towel, flashlight, small amount of food, tea, and medications for malaria prevention. I also take passport and some travel documents around my neck in a passport holder. Do most of you think that two small bags (Synapse and personal bag) would be best, or would Smart Alec with no personal bag (just passport/credid card holder around my neck) be better?? If you think two bags, then what personal bag should I consider? Thanks, LauraA
    Last edited by LauraA; 05-02-2012 at 12:40 PM.
    "To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive."
    LauraA

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    Registered User nukediver's Avatar
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    What about a small or medium cafe bag inside a Smart Alec?

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    Registered User TavaPeak's Avatar
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    Well, I definitely shouldn't be posting on ANY thread for extreme ultra-light packers! ;-) But I encourage you to check out the Ballistic navy WF when you are in the showroom. The online photos don't do that fabric justice. It has a gorgeous sheen, and you have that kick of solar Dyneema whenever you open the bag.

    For your question, I'd probably suggest using that Iberian Synapse with a small or med cafe' bag? Those bags are small enough (when empty) to stash inside the Synapse. That would also give you a small bag to use during the day. There are some really fun colors for the cafe bags. A Packing Cube Shoulder Bag might work (in Iberian, to match your Synapse? ;-), as it can be used as packing cube or daybag, but it seems a little big for what you carry on a daily basis.

    Or maybe a Side Effect would be just enough more space. It can be worn several ways, and it stows in the bottom pocket of the Synapse so you can one-bag when you want to. Nice way to keep your passport, meds, and camera close en route. Maybe Darcy can find one left in a cool color for you.

  4. #4
    Registered User Lani's Avatar
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    The Cafe Bags are nice. You might also consider the Co-Pilot. You can get a lot of the non-clothes knick-knacks into the Co-Pilot.
    Lani Teshima: A Dyneema diva with a closetful of Tom Bihn products!
    Publisher, The Travelite FAQ: Don't get saddled with baggage—free yourself & your mind by packing lightly!
    Editor, MousePlanet: Detailed park guides, daily news & stories from all over the Disney kingdom | Technical writer | Marathoner

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    The Large Cafe Bag is my second bag and I think that a Medium or Co-Pilot would work great.

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    I agree with @Lani - the Co-Pilot & Synapse are made for each other. Their designs match each other. The dyneema version flattens well. Since you are into extreme light packing, I bet you can use the Co-Pilot by itself on overnight trips . I love the cafe bags, too. I prefer the Co-Pilot for travel for its great organization and security offered by the zippers.

    Good luck with choosing.

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    Thanks all, I will definitely look at all of the bags when I'm in Seattle - can't wait (and Tava Peak, I'll look at the blue Western Flyer)! Nukediver, if I have the Smart Alec, then I won't need another bag with it. I actually already have a shoulder bag packing cube to use at destination. I still need to decide if I want the Synapse plus a personal bag for longer trips, or if I want the Smart Alec (or Western Flyer) with no personal bag (I have packing cube to use at destination). Thanks all, LauraA
    Last edited by LauraA; 05-03-2012 at 09:16 AM.
    "To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive."
    LauraA

  8. #8
    I work at TOM BIHN Katy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LauraA View Post
    when I'm in Seattle - can't wait
    When is this!!!???
    http://www.tombihn.com
    1-800-729-9607 (US & Canada) 360-452-0115 (other countries)
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    Hi Katy - I get there May 9th, and stay for about a week before heading on to NYC. Is there a "best" time to come by the showroom? I'll be pretty free when grandkids are at school on the week days. Take care, Laura
    "To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive."
    LauraA

  10. #10
    I work at TOM BIHN Katy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LauraA View Post
    Hi Katy - I get there May 9th, and stay for about a week before heading on to NYC. Is there a "best" time to come by the showroom? I'll be pretty free when grandkids are at school on the week days. Take care, Laura
    I recommend any time before 3pm so you can see the factory at work .
    http://www.tombihn.com
    1-800-729-9607 (US & Canada) 360-452-0115 (other countries)
    Siquid mantica non capit, domi relinquendum est.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Katy View Post
    I recommend any time before 3pm so you can see the factory at work .
    I am soooo envious!!
    Lani and TavaPeak like this.
    Cocoa/wasabi LCB, black/wasabi MCB & SCB, steel/solar Aeronaut, Absolute Shoulder Strap, 5 packing cubes, olive Clear Organizer Wallet, turquoise & wasabi large clear organizer pouches, plum & black pen/pencil organizer pouches, 5 Clear/Cordura Organizer Pouches (mini & small/assorted colors), azalea 3-D Clear Organizer Cube, lapis blue & iberian Ultrasuede Screen Cloths, solar Travel Tray, 5 key straps (assorted lengths/colors), red/blue Strapeez, red Guardian Dual Function Light

  12. #12
    Registered User Maria's Avatar
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    Me too!

    I want to go to Seattle! ;(

    Of course, if we all did this at once, like a group road trip - the poor TB team!
    "Buy the best, cry once" - Pasquale

  13. #13
    Registered User TavaPeak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maria View Post
    Me too!

    I want to go to Seattle! ;(

    Of course, if we all did this at once, like a group road trip - the poor TB team!
    We'd have to give them couple years' notice, so they could have enough stock ready. ;-)
    Lani and gochicken like this.

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    Well, I need to be the personal shopper for all of you while I'm in Seattle!! I still need to figure out if, for longer and overseas trips, I want to buy a personal bag to carry on along with my Synapse or I want to bye a Western Flyer or Smart Alec. The Western Flyer and Smart Alec have the same capacity, so I also need to figure out if they would actually hold the same amount of stuff. Thanks all, LauraA
    "To travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive."
    LauraA

  15. #15
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    I will be VERY interested in your impressions and comparison of the WF to the Smart Alec, LauraA! I recently puchased the WF backpack in navy/solar for a trip later in the summer. I have been looking at the Smart Alec for ages, but it currently does not come in navy. I have a Synapse in black/uv, but I am giving it away. I am looking at the Smart Alec as a replacement - if it ever comes in navy with a light lining

    Thanks!

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