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Thread: How did you first discover Tom Bihn bags?

  1. #1
    Jay
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    How did you first discover Tom Bihn bags?

    Unfortunately Tom Bihn isn't a common household name of luggage such as Samsonite, Tumi, etc. So I'm really curious on how each of you first discovered and fell into love with Tom Bihn bags. I'll start off with my story...

    It was the mid 2000's and the hand-me-down laptop my dad let me use for college died on me. So this was the first time in my life I actually purchased a brand new laptop for my own use. Naturally I wanted to protect my investment however I was not impressed with the various laptop cases that were available. To be more specific, I was searching for a laptop sheath that offered an actual hard plastic inner layer. Not just padding which everybody else was offering, but a hard, rigid layer of plastic inside to protect the laptop. This internet search criteria brought me to the Tom Bihn Monolith and Brain Cell. They were perfect! Exactly what I was looking for! Also since they were made right here in Seattle, buying one was a no brainer so I drove to the showroom and picked up a Monolith to use inside of my existing backpack.

    The Monolith worked perfectly and it's high quality put my JanSport backpack to shame, so I got curious to all the other products Tom Bihn had to offer and started searching around on the website some more. I loved the thoughtful design, colors, and high quality materials that were put into these bags. I also liked how the brain cells could be clipped inside most of the bags allowing you to change brain cells depending on the size of your laptop while keeping your existing Tom Bihn bag, very cool! I ended up ditching my JanSport backpack and got a Super Ego with various mini pouches inside to keep me perfectly organized.

    My Super Ego has been my trusted companion throughout college and my professional work career afterwards, I litterally take it everywhere with me! I appreciate that it's not a "mainstream brand" that everybody else wears, I feel like I'm a member of a prestigious secret bag society when I cycle or walk down the street with it but I'm more than willing to spread the word and direct those interested in it to Tom Bihn's website. All in all my Super Ego is a very versatile bag that I cannot imagine ever replacing!

    So there it is, my story on how I got into Tom Bihn. I would really like to read about all of your stories on how you got into Tom Bihn as well!

  2. #2
    Registered User dorayme's Avatar
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    I joined Ravelry late in 2007 because it was the thing to do with my love of fiber arts. Shortly after joining I went on a search for a knitting bag. I was reaching a point when I wanted something specific just for knitting, but wasn't sure what would best suit my needs. I kept seeing posts here and there about the Swift. I searched some more, found Tom Bihn's website and fell in love with the offerings both for knitting bags, and otherwise. I however didn't buy at that time.

    Fast forward almost 3 years later and I had graduated from carrying a diaper bag for my little ones, was finally starting to need a PLO again, and desparately wanted a quality knitting bag because the few others I had tried were severely lacking. In September 2010 saw a hemp LS FSOT on Ravelry and decided FO jump on it. When it was delivered, I was smitten and it was game over. I out in my first order to TB in January 2011 which included Corky, my first Full Sized Swift, and first Cork from TB and haven't stopped since then.

    I adore the folks at TB, they are a class act company. They really care about what their customers need. They pay attention to our wants too. They also care about each other and every quality and detail concerning their bags from threads to function. At this time, I have found no equal in bag manufacturers or in other areas of consumables.

    I too feel like an elitist in my TB bag ownership, but as stated, it's something to share!
    Si non aptus in Peram, ego opus ad buy magis quisque.
    my bags: S, LS, KP, mg'11, S, LS, COW, MCB, LS, COW, LSB, SE, LSB, TT, SB, SE, TSS4, PCSB, PCBP-A, SC, BB, SCB, FJN, BB, FoJ, RS, F.O.T., LSB, S25, PCSB K, LS, I w/AS, A, PP FJN, SE, 3-DC, MCB, PCBP-T/WF, PCSB, CQPC, S19, LSB, SB, TT, SE, S, C-P, P, WF, UT, LSB, CQPC, PCBP-T/WF, SE2, MCB, RiPad, SB, LSB

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    Many moons ago, I really liked Trager bags. Their bags were sold on the Tom Bihn site. I managed to mangle the Trager bag I had and went back to the TB site to order another and TB was no longer listing them. I liked what I saw on the TB site, purchased a briefcase - I don't recall which model and it is long since sold - and the rest is history. (I found another place to purchase the Trager bag I was looking for - it is still going strong for my wife.)
    Last edited by rabergnc; 08-19-2012 at 04:27 PM. Reason: Clarity

  4. #4
    Registered User cucciasv's Avatar
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    Zephyr Was My First of Many!

    Always being involved in Information Technology as a career (started as a hobby, and many aspects of IT are still hobby), I read lots of tech journals and attended lots of user group meetings ... you know, nerdy things like that. After the web blossomed in the late nineties, I began reading tons of online tech blogs and pundit reviews. And, more recently there have been the tech podcasts to absorb.

    Tom Bihn has always been THE recommended gear bag among the tech-illuminati.

    I have had a love affair with bags, satchels, murses ... you name it! But I was tired of all the cheap bags, and I wanted durable, stand-out quality products. After reading several reviews of various Tom Bihn bags, I purchased a Zephyr (cardinal) as my go-to bag for the laptop and accessories. That was about five years ago. I just received my Super Ego (holds more), and my Zephyr -- though looking brand new -- goes into semi-retirement. I plan to use it more for business meetings and conferences as opposed to client visits where I need to carry extra gear.

    I now have BAS (Bihn Acquisition Syndrome). I have quite a few TB products. While I recognize that I need some serious help (hey, at least I don't gamble, drink or cheat on my wife), I am happy knowing that my TB bags, and future products, will be the only ones I use - and recommend.


    Someone please help me!
    I have BAS (Bihn Acquisition Syndrome)!!


  5. #5
    Registered User blackfungi's Avatar
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    destiny brought me here.
    aeronaut[black/solar]tristar[black/red iberian]western flyer[black/steel]synapse[black/steel]side effect[black/wasabi]medium cafe bag[black/wasabi]large cafe bag[black/wasabi]shopping bag[steel].

  6. #6
    KmK
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    I was reading posts on RhodiaDrive (Blog for Rhodia notebooks--AWESOME notebooks, for those who have a thing for paper...) and saw a picture of a Rhodia pad in an original Ristretto bag... I had long been looking for "the bag of bags" that would be both practical and different, a little funky and sturdily functional and the Ristretto made me sit up and take notice of a possible source! Ah, such wondrous, friendly, customer service oriented, source! The love began with a MCB... And now I have pictures of my own Rhodias riding in Tom Bihn bags...

  7. #7
    Registered User nukediver's Avatar
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    I first heard of TB on The Gadeteer's web site, where they reviewed the Buzz sling bag. It just looked so cool that I had to get one. That was way back in 2004, and I haven't looked back. I'm afraid to actually count the number of TB products in my home, but I do know for sure that the number will only go up!

  8. #8
    Registered User bunchgrass's Avatar
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    I learned about TB bags on the Fountain Pen Network forums.

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    Last fall I was trying to find a good work bag for my husband, one that would fit a laptop and work files and a lunch, as a surprise for his birthday (he's VERY difficult to shop for!). I was also looking for some luggage as I had been surprised with tickets to visit family in Boston. All we owned was an ancient suitcase with wheels. Not a rollaboard with a telescoping handle. A suitcase. With a tether for dragging! I thought they were unrelated searches. The name "Tom Bihn" kept popping up in glowing review after glowing review in both of these "unrelated" searches. I ordered an ID messenger bag for the husband and a TriStar and Synapse for the trip to Boston. I was AMAZED by the TriStar and Synapse, and that's saying a lot, because like others here, I was a bit of a bag lady prior to TB and so I feel like it takes a lot to really wow me.

    The rest is, as they say, history. Tom Bihn and gang found me at a fortuitous time and with eight small kids (read backpacks, luggage, etc), I will be purchasing products from them for a while! That being said, we use several TB products every day for work, school, and home and I couldn't be happier with the TB people or products.

  10. #10
    Registered User gochicken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay View Post
    I feel like I'm a member of a prestigious secret bag society
    I first found Tom Bihn several years ago when I became the owner of the first iPad (can't remember what year that was). I wanted explore my iPad carrying options, and the Tom Bihn site came up as part of the search. At that time, I remember thinking.... "Wow! This stuff is nice.... but soooo expensive!" And so I didn't jump in. My iPad continued on in a bagless state for quite some time.

    THen came 2011... the year it all came together for me (Tom Bihn-wise that is). After about 20 years of hiatus, I started knitting again. I invested in really nice needles (Hand made in USA by small company in Vermont... Dyakcraft), and needed a knitting bag. Again, up came the Tom Bihn site on the search. This time, the more I read, the more I knew I needed to just jump in, especially after reading dorayme's reviews! So I started with an Azalea Swift, and multiple bags later, I am still plotting more purchases for myself and as gifts for friends and family. I love the forum and the Tom Bihn group on Ravelry, and now that my mom and brother are happy TB bag owners, it really does feel like family!

    I love the part about belonging to a secret bag society.... maybe TB bags will be featured in the next Bond film!
    Satisfied owner of: Azalea Swift & LS, Blk/Plum Swift, Cork LS, Blk/UV LS, Synapse 19 & Co-Pilot, Steel/UV Pilot, Fst/Stl Tri-Star, Fst/Blk/UV SA, UV PCSB, Plum SE, FJN, & SCB, Aubergine WF, LS & Kit, Trvl Trays, Passport Pouches, and Shop Bags in all colors , Multiplying OPs

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    I happened upon a blog posting about shoulder straps...

  12. #12
    Registered User Lani's Avatar
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    For me, it was word of mouth from a friend of mine. She knew about my Travelite.org blog, and showed off her Aeronaut, and told me how that bag allowed her to travel without checking anything in. I was quite impressed with the workmanship, and I thought I'd check it out myself!
    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

  13. #13
    Registered User Flinx's Avatar
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    I was turned on to Tom Bihn on a forum that I frequent that has a large number of self-proclaimed "bag-whores" posting to it. It was one of those "I'm looking for a bag, what should I get?" type of threads, and the responses were many and varied, and tended mostly toward popular and better-known brands with a peppering of some exotic and more specialized offerings.

    Since I was looking for a new messenger bag at the time, I looked up everything that was mentioned, and discovered Tom Bihn and the wonderful online community that exists here. It's also a local company to me, which sealed the deal, and I now enjoy my SuperEgo daily.
    Ted

    SuperEgo in black/steel/wasabi; Aeronaut in cardinal/steel; Horizontal Cache (2M) in charcoal; Travel Tray in Ultraviolet

  14. #14
    Registered User helen_uk's Avatar
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    Hi, I discovered Tom Bihn when I was reading a blog on minimalist packing. I am now hooked!

    My first purchase was an ID Messenger bag (along with a Horizontal Freudian Slip, organizer pouches, and a Travel Tray). Then I became obsessed with the Dyneema material/colors and bought an Iberian Co-Pilot, Steel Dyneema Synapse, 3D Organizer Cube, and a couple of Travel Stuff sacks...

  15. #15
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    it was in 2004, i believe, that i went looking for a backpack to carry my 15" powerbook. i happened upon a review of the smartalec on the-gadgeteer website. i purchased that along with a monolith.

    we still have that backpack in our family, and it still looks fantastic and works perfectly!

    the rest, as they say, is history...

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