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  1. #1
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    What does your EDC/Laptop bag weigh?

    Hi All, new to the forums and absolutely obsessed with Tom Bihn bags!

    I have a question for the members here regarding my EDC/Laptop bag and its weight. Some days it feels just fine and other days it seems heavy to lug around every day. I weighed my bag the other day and it came to 12.4 lbs full and thus my question... is that about average for your EDC/Laptop bag? I have tried removing items I may not need to make the bag lighter but still seems heavy at times.

    Here is what makes the bag 12+lbs.

    TB ID Messenger Bag w/Absolute Strap
    6z BrainCell for my 13" Samsung Ultrabook
    Feurdian Slip with my Ipad Air, Laptop and Ipad charging adapters, External 128gb SSD , portable cd/dvd writer, bluetooth mouse, some writing pens.
    Sunglasses, Work Blackberry, Klipsch S4 earphones, leatherman Skeletool, Tom bihn mini organizer with my passport and other business cards, that's it.

    Is this alot to carry? What does your laptop bag weigh?

  2. #2
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    Hello mikem2277,

    Welcome to the forums. I'm not sure what my EDC/laptop bag weighs, but let me make a few observations:

    I find it easier to use a backpack for my EDC as opposed to a messenger bag, both because carrying weight is easier and because the weight is better distributed. I may use messenger bags like the Imago (recently discontinued) if I am carrying lighter loads, and I've also used the ID Bag with Absolute strap when I want to pack additional items (e.g., clothes for short trips). (My ownership of both bags goes back a number of years). But generally, since the 19" Synapse was first released in November 2009, this has been my EDC laptop bag.

    So let's do a quick exercise of shifting EDC laptop bag configurations from the ID Messenger Bag w/Absolute Strap to a 19" Synapse. I'll use the weight of the Cordura Synapse, since that's the version I've been regularly carrying for the last 4 and a bit years, even though I now have the Dyneema versions that will save you even more weight.

    ID Messenger Bag in Ballistic Nylon volume: 20.9 liters, weight: 2 lb 3 oz / 985 gm + Absolute Strap weight: 8 oz / 230 gm

    Synapse 19 in Cordura volume: 19 liters, weight: 1 lb 8 oz / 695 gm (400d Dyneema and 420d HT Nylon Parapack weight is a bit lighter @ 650 gm and 680 gm so could save another oz)

    Size 6Z Horizontal Brain Cell: weight 15 oz / 425 gm
    Size 6Z Vertical Cache with Rails: weight 5.8 oz / 165 gm

    Basically, just by switching from the ID Messenger Bag w/ Absolute Strap and Horizontal Brain Cell to the similar volume Synapse 19 Backpack, I've gone down in weight from 3 lbs 10 oz to 1 lb 14 oz, for a weight savings of 1 lb 11.5 oz (I've calculated from the weight in gm, rather than rounding). It comes about because the Cordura is lighter than the Ballistic Nylon, you don't have to carry an additional shoulder strap, and the Cache on rails is less than half the weight of the Horizontal Brain Cell.

    On top of that, I generally carry a 13" MacBook Air, which is 2.38 lbs in contrast to the 3.2 lbs of your Samsung Ultrabook, so I'm already running 2.5 lbs lighter than your Bag+Laptop configuration without considering any of the other items.

    There are advantages to the ID Messenger bag format, if you want to separately carry just your Horizontal Brain Cell with laptop, and the Synapse 13 cannot fit a Horizontal Freudian Slip.

    HTH, and perhaps others will chime in. I also note that a few people have begun posting about using the even lighter (and lower volume) Pilot as their laptop EDCs.

    moriond

  3. #3
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    Mike,
    I have a synapse19 and weighs 11-12 lbs fully loaded for the day. I have my work laptop (Lenovo T420), power cord, phone charger, electronics battery pack, mouse, moleskine, mini tb pouch as a first aid kit, pens, flashlight, multitool, thermos, Kindle, Screen cloth, one-use hand warmers, emergency blanket, some plastic bags and a glow stick.

    I find my load very heavy. I probably need to slim it down.

    Sent from my Moto X using Tapatalk

  4. #4
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    I don't have a scale with me but this is what I always have in my Black Dyneema Synapse 19 (I don't have issues with weight but as the previous poster said the backpack helps greatly to distribute it evenly):

    Main Compartment:
    13" Macbook Pro Retina & Cache + Rails
    Nintendo 3DS XL with Reversal Cloth Pouch

    Side Pocket:
    2 Pens
    Empty Red Small Travel Stuff Sack (used for my Uniqlo Down Vest when needed)
    1 Small padded pouch with memory cards or 3DS games

    Water Bottle Center Pocket:
    Sigg .75L Water Bottle

    Side Pocket 2:
    Earbuds
    Sunglasses
    Keystrap

    Small Front Pocket:
    Small organizer pouch (the free holiday gift)
    Some gift cards/coupons
    Apple earphones & mic headset
    Loose change

    Lower Bottom Pocket:
    Keystrapped 3d Mesh Organizer cube with:
    Macbook Pro charger, iPhone charger

    Some days I'll have my iPad Air & cache, other chargers, etc. depending on what I'm doing. On nights I have class I might have a couple books in there.

    I'll use it as a weekend solo bag and throw in a medium Tri-Star packing cube in the main compartment for clothes.
    Last edited by jlchau; 03-03-2014 at 05:04 PM.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for all the info! When it comes to bag choices I'm torn...I have never been big on the backpack style but without question
    see the benefits of them especially If I'm heading to the gym after work I'm sure I could put my gym stuff and computer stuff in a Brain Bag or S25/S19 with zero issues where as now with my ID I need a separate bag but then there's the part were I don't like backpacks. I live in Texas were I don't walk but drive anywhere so maybe I should just suck it up. I have always loved the Empire Builder and Zephyr but feel that I wouldn't be cutting the weight If I went down that route especially with the empire builder! A new Dyneema Pilot w/Cache seems to be perfect but doing that means spending $$$. Maybe it's cause my obsession is fresh but this whole Tom Bihn Eco-system is overwhelming and expensive!

  6. #6
    Registered User Ilkyway's Avatar
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    I think the S19 is too small for work + gym. I have the S19 and had to by the S25 because my stuff just fitted with no extra Space. My backpack ways 11-12 pounds and there is no computer in it. Now with the S25 there would be enaugh space left for gym stuff.
    The Brain Bag would be way too big for me, but for a man and as a double-purposes-bag that sounds like a good choice.

    Ilkyway

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikem2277 View Post
    Hi All, new to the forums and absolutely obsessed with Tom Bihn bags!

    I have a question for the members here regarding my EDC/Laptop bag and its weight. Some days it feels just fine and other days it seems heavy to lug around every day. I weighed my bag the other day and it came to 12.4 lbs full and thus my question... is that about average for your EDC/Laptop bag? I have tried removing items I may not need to make the bag lighter but still seems heavy at times.

    Here is what makes the bag 12+lbs.

    TB ID Messenger Bag w/Absolute Strap
    6z BrainCell for my 13" Samsung Ultrabook
    Feurdian Slip with my Ipad Air, Laptop and Ipad charging adapters, External 128gb SSD , portable cd/dvd writer, bluetooth mouse, some writing pens.
    Sunglasses, Work Blackberry, Klipsch S4 earphones, leatherman Skeletool, Tom bihn mini organizer with my passport and other business cards, that's it.

    Is this alot to carry? What does your laptop bag weigh?
    Hmm, you seem to be carrying quite a lot of electronic accessories! If you're interested in cutting down on your weight, I'd consider whether you really need the SSD and portable CD/DVD writer on a daily basis. That said, everyone has different needs and 12 lbs isn't all too much.

    Here's my EDC as a grad student, with some weight estimates (I don't have a scale).

    Synapse 25 in Cordura (1 lb 13 oz)

    main compartment:
    15" Vizio ultrabook in light sleeve (4 lbs)
    4 (slim) notebooks (~1 lb)
    Side Effect in Dyneema (4.8 oz) with checkbook wallet, small comb, small floss, nail file, lip balm, etc (~1 lb (my wallet is heavy...))

    water bottle pocket:
    Thermos 18-ounce stainless steel water bottle (~10 oz), filled (~1 lb 3 oz)

    small front pocket:
    mini organizer pouch with small amounts of medication (~2 oz)
    micro organizer pouch (holiday gift) with earbuds (~2 oz)

    side pocket 1:
    pen, usb flash drive, sunglasses, empty size 2 stuff sack (occasionally used for laptop power supply on long days) (~8 oz)

    side pocket 2:
    mixed nuts, small container of coconut oil (lotion), keys on keystrap (~1 lb)

    bottom pocket:
    lunch in glass container (~1 lb 8 oz)

    Adding up my estimates (no guarantees on accuracy...), my EDC is probably ~13 lbs then. It carries very well in the Synapse - I walk 2 miles each way to school and rarely feel that my bag is too heavy. As mentioned previously in this thread, a backpack distributes weight better than a messenger bag, and I find using the sternum strap on the Synapse actually makes a big difference in helping keep things steady. There's still room in the bag, by the way, and I add a packing cube shoulder bag with clothes to the main compartment and put toiletries in the bottom pocket (instead of a lunch) for traveling.

    Hopefully this helps you decide if the Synapse 25 could work for you - I agree with the previous poster than the Synapse 19 would be too small, if you also hope to carry gym clothes. As far as backpacks go, it's also quite stylish, I think, and your shoulder will thank you...

  8. #8
    Volunteer Moderator Badger's Avatar
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    I agree with Claire--it seems like there are a lot of accessories going to and from work with you each day. However, without knowing what you do at your job, I can't say whether or not you should pare down your belongings. I pretty much also agree with everyone else regarding the backpack, for the simple reason that 12 lbs is a ton to carry on one shoulder, and even--I would argue--cross-body.

    My EDC loadout is around 12 lbs or so but there is a reason for that: the bag (S19 or 25) plus my 15" MBP weigh almost 7 lbs combined; once I factor in my office supplies, research materials, books, and water bottle, I can hit 12 lbs easy. Yet, I don't really feel like this amount is heavy, even if I'm walking some distance.

    I am not sure I understand your hesitation about the Pilot because of price. A Pilot + Cache is $180, whereas a Synapse 25 + Cache is $200. Neither sum is insignificant, but the Pilot is, I think, at an affordable price point especially if you can use the Absolute Strap and accessories you already own.

    My reservation about recommending the Pilot in your case is that it's only 13 litres in capacity, whereas the ID is almost 21. That's a significant difference. If you are planning to carry everything in your current list, you may not have enough room, even though if you got the Pilot you would have to ditch the Freudian Slip.

    If the Pilot + Cache setup is what you want, you may need to ask yourself which of your current EDC items are *actually* used every day. If you are able to leave some of the electronics and chargers at home (or at the office), you may find that you can get the bag you want or, and this is the $0 solution, make your current bag more comfortable to carry.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #9
    Registered User Tizi's Avatar
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    My EDC is in the 10-12 pound range as well. I use a Synapse 19 in black dyneema/wasabi every day.

    Main Compartment:
    Surface Pro 2 with Type 2 keyboard in cache with rails (11 MBA size)
    Large OP in steely dyneema (work and personal papers)
    Medium Clear OP in black (bandana and wipes)
    8 X 5 Padfolio
    Black dyneema Side Effect (FAK, Tools, Flashlight, baterries, emergency info on USB)

    Front Top Compartment:
    Vapour water bottle
    Sun glasses in case

    Front Lower Top Compartment:
    TB wallet
    Mints
    Work badge

    Lower Pocket:
    3D mesh OP with cables for Surface Pro 2, iphone, spare batter, etc.

    Right Pocket:
    Iphone 5S
    Small OP with lense cleaner, gum, extra pen ink
    Key strap with coin holder and glasses microfiber attached

    Left Pocket:
    Pen
    Flashlight
    Hand Sanitizer
    Small mesh OP with Surface Mouse
    Mini clear OP with USBs, Micro SD, et
    Pocket Pouch with business cards

    I tried to fit all of this in a Pilot and while it works, it is over stuffed. I still have plenty of room in the S19 to put my lunch in the main compartment. It is the best EDC bag I have ever had. Love it.
    Black/Steel TS, Black/Steel Aeronaut, Black/Black/Steel Brain Bag, Black/Steel Co-Pilot, Black/Steel Pilot, Black/Steel Synapse 19, Black Dyneema/Wasabi Synapse 19, Black/Steel Cadet 11, Black/Steel Imago, Black Dyneema/Wasabi MCB, Navy/Cayenne and Black/Solar SCB, Black/Wasabi and Navy/Iberian SE and many pouches in various sizes. Tom Bihnaholic.

  10. #10
    Registered User bchaplin's Avatar
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    If my scale at work is correct, my Pilot weighs 8 lbs today. Ballistic nylon, with iPad, iPhone with battery charger, flashlight, notebooks, first aid kit, and a few other things.
    ----
    Please bring back the Portable Culture patch!

  11. #11
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    Not sure what mine weighs, but I have about the same things you have, with a substantially larger computer:

    Lenovo Thinkpad W530 (15.7")
    Asus Transformer tablet
    2tb passport drive
    Reading material
    MyCharge Peak 6000 battery backup
    pack of AAA batteries
    Klipsch m4 earbuds
    Plantronics Go Bluetooth earbuds
    MoGo Bluetooth mouse and USB charger
    checkbook
    Leatherman tool
    Tide to go
    chap stick
    assorted pens

    An that doesn't even include lunch, which doesn't fit - at least not until my WF arrives TODAY! Time to relegate the Wenger to the attic again

  12. #12
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    Update: Upgrade from ID to Checkpoint Flyer

    Quick Update: I have recently acquired a lightly used Checkpoint Flyer and I must say I am super happy with this bag! In regards to moriod's comment on going with a lighter bag I think this is correct. While the Checkpoint Flyer is not much lighter than the ID messenger bag when you add in the braincell and what seems like more material on the ID the weight savings is evident with the CF. The way the Checkpoint Flyer carries it's weight is better balanced as the ID is designed to be used as a messenger on/over the shoulder not as a briefcase. I will miss the good looks of the ID as I think Tom went with more function than looks with the Checkpoint Flyer although from some angles I think the CF looks cooler/different than other Tom Bihn bags. Lastly the ID felt heavy with little room to spare for lunch or gym clothes...Another comment was made about the new Pilot and how I would be loosing capacity compared to the ID, the Checkpoint Flyer solves this problem as the laptop compartment is separate from the storage area of the bag which leaves me tons of space for lunch and a change for the gym minus shoes. All in all , very happy! Oh and my Checkpoint Flyer carrying all the items the ID carried comes in at 10.8lbs but once again the weight feels better balanced. Wonder how Tom will improve on the new Checkpoint flyer.


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