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  1. #1
    seh
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    Angry Noisy metal zipper pulls

    I'm not sure if this should count as a review or a product suggestion. I just opened the box to inspect my eagerly-anticipated Medium Café Bag, and was alarmed more by what I heard than saw. The bag is noisy.

    There's a zipper that runs across the front of the bag under the hanging flap. The zipper is made of a metal in dark gray finish. That's a nice touch, but the zipper pull makes a tinkling sound when it bounces against the ring that holds it to the slider. It sounds like a little bell ringing, more rickety than pleasant.

    I have 3-year-old ID bag that doesn't have this problem, or at least I've never noticed any sound coming from its various zippers. Is this a known issue?

    As for the product suggestion angle, there have been discussions here about avoiding velcro to enable discreet bag operation in, say, a meeting. The noisy zipper pull violates that principle, so I suggest investigating whether some other finish on the zipper hardware will make it less noisy, at least during normal movement of the bag.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by seh View Post
    There's a zipper that runs across the front of the bag under the hanging flap. The zipper is made of a metal in dark gray finish. That's a nice touch, but the zipper pull makes a tinkling sound when it bounces against the ring that holds it to the slider. It sounds like a little bell ringing, more rickety than pleasant.
    Did you try to put a small cord loop in the zipper pull?

  3. #3
    seh
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    Quote Originally Posted by ratdeau View Post
    Did you try to put a small cord loop in the zipper pull?
    Not yet, but that's a great idea. In fact, that's one of my favorite parts about the ID bag: the zipper pulls have a loop that runs to a ridged plastic end cap.

    Are those same cords and caps available for order?

  4. #4
    seh
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    Quote Originally Posted by ratdeau View Post
    Did you try to put a small cord loop in the zipper pull?
    Actually, on closer inspection, that wouldn't solve the problem. It's the other end of the zipper pull -- where it meets the slider's clasp -- that clangs against the clasp and the flat face of the slider.

    Though perhaps attaching a cord loop as you suggest would absorb some of the vibration in the pull. As a first experiment, I'll probably try wrapping the pull in something like masking tape.

  5. #5
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    Try putting a 'collar' say...3/8" long of common plastic shrink tubing around the contact section of the pull and then using a hair dryer on High, shrink the tubing down for a tight fit.Shrink tubing is cheap and can be obtained at most Hardware stores or Radio Shack. The best part is it will look like part of the Pull, once it has shrunk down!

  6. #6
    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    Among the many Tom Bihn bags I own is the Medium Cafe Bag, and for me, the (in my mind) quiet jingling noise of the zipper has never been a bother. I don't think that I notice it at all.

    I personally prefer the look of metal sliders on most bags (cord pulls are great on sportier bags) and I like how they're less likely to catch on things than cord pulls are.

    It does seem to come down to a personal preference, and I can see where you're coming from.

    We would be glad to send you a couple of cord pulls to try out on your Cafe bag as long as you promise to let us know what you think of them. :)

    Send me a private message with your address and we'll mail the pulls out to you on Monday.
    Current Carry: Skookum Dog Citizen Canine prototype, Founder's Briefcase (every day carry), Small Cafe Bag (every day carry), Shop Bags (groceries, extra random stuff), Aeronaut 45 (travel), Synapse 19 (day hikes), Smart Alec (longer day hikes), Skookum Dog Road Duffel (Medium) (travel), Clear Organizer Wallet, Travel Stuff Sacks, Organizer Cubes

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by seh View Post
    Actually, on closer inspection, that wouldn't solve the problem. It's the other end of the zipper pull -- where it meets the slider's clasp -- that clangs against the clasp and the flat face of the slider.

    Though perhaps attaching a cord loop as you suggest would absorb some of the vibration in the pull. As a first experiment, I'll probably try wrapping the pull in something like masking tape.
    You can reduce 90% of the noise if you tie your cord like that.

    It reduce the vibration of the zipper pull wich act like a bell.

    PS: Darcy, if you have some cord pulls for my Aeronaut, think to me.

  8. #8
    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    That's a very smart fix.

    ratdeau - We can send you some pulls. Same address as usual? PM me!
    Current Carry: Skookum Dog Citizen Canine prototype, Founder's Briefcase (every day carry), Small Cafe Bag (every day carry), Shop Bags (groceries, extra random stuff), Aeronaut 45 (travel), Synapse 19 (day hikes), Smart Alec (longer day hikes), Skookum Dog Road Duffel (Medium) (travel), Clear Organizer Wallet, Travel Stuff Sacks, Organizer Cubes

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    That's a very elegant solution. I'll try that myself.Thanks for the tip!

  10. #10
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    Where do you get the little cords to tie on your zippers? That's the one thing I notice most when I use the Aeronaut, the constant jingling.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by plaidboy View Post
    Where do you get the little cords to tie on your zippers? That's the one thing I notice most when I use the Aeronaut, the constant jingling.
    Looks like accessory cord, but I'm not sure which size? Check out sports stores or hardware stores which sells cords for rigging and general use.

    I don't notice this so much on my Aeronaut (where I use a small travel lock), but the jingling is very noticeable on the snake charmer I just received. Maybe when buried inside a bag it won't be such a problem. Or I can just buy zipper pulls for these.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by moriond View Post
    Looks like accessory cord, but I'm not sure which size? Check out sports stores or hardware stores which sells cords for rigging and general use.
    Yes it is. Don't choose it to thick.
    Perhaps Tom should put zippers pull as an option when purchasing a bag with "noisy" zipper.

  13. #13
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    I have bought zipper pulls with novelty decorations, mine is a globe it looks like the ones on this site:

    http://customathleticspirit.com/_wsn/page4

    But if you have to check the bag while traveling, I would use either Darcy or ratdeau solution.

    The novelties are cute but might catch on something when you luggage is manhandled at various airports or trains/bus stations.

  14. #14
    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    plaidboy -- I'd be glad to send you some cord pulls. Send me your address via private message.

    Maybe we should sell the pulls on our Web site as an accessory? What do you guys think?
    Current Carry: Skookum Dog Citizen Canine prototype, Founder's Briefcase (every day carry), Small Cafe Bag (every day carry), Shop Bags (groceries, extra random stuff), Aeronaut 45 (travel), Synapse 19 (day hikes), Smart Alec (longer day hikes), Skookum Dog Road Duffel (Medium) (travel), Clear Organizer Wallet, Travel Stuff Sacks, Organizer Cubes

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darcy View Post
    Maybe we should sell the pulls on our Web site as an accessory? What do you guys think?
    Yes! I'd buy some. I'd like to try something along the lines of ratdeau's suggestion for the larger zippers on the Aeronaut. Short cords the thickness of the pulls used for the ID bag would work. I like having the metal zipper tabs on the Aeronaut, and since the I use a small lock on the tabs for the main pocket, they're weighted down and don't jingle. Maybe a loop under the base of the metal tabs of the side pocket zip tabs would keep this quiet - something shorter than ratdeau's fix. On the snake charmer I'd need to try this with thinner loops. I'd already been looking for these. For example, here, here, or (thinner cord) here.

    Incidentally, I still prefer having the tabs without pulls on the main compartment of the Aeronaut, since you might want to lock this (or even have to check this on occasion). The other reason for prefering the short tabs is that the zipper pulls work better for straight or only slightly curved zip paths -- for the square "U" opening of the Aeronaut using the short tabs is better. For my Buzz, I loop one end of the pull through the loop of the other if I want to keep the compartment harder to open (by somebody else!) when it's on my back.
    Last edited by moriond; 11-28-2006 at 11:25 AM.

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