The strong, silent type of briefcase: straight-forward and handsome with lots of features inside.
The Cadet is a minimalist briefcase designed to fit your laptop, a few files or magazines, power supplies, pens, notebooks, and other small accessories.
Inside the main compartment of the Cadet are two unobtrusive webbing loops (that we call "rail loops") to which you can secure the optional Cache (available in sizes specifically for every Apple laptop and iPad; PC users, click here for our Laptop Bag Fit Guide). When you add the Cache, the Cadet becomes a "checkpoint-friendly" laptop briefcase. Here's how it works: on the back (or bottom, depending how you look at it) of the Cache are two parallel "rails" of 1" wide lightweight nylon webbing which extend from the top to the bottom. Included (and already attached for your convenience) when the Cache is ordered with the Cadet are two Gatekeeper Rail Clips: unclip the side that isn't clipped to the Cache, slip it through the webbing loops in the Cadet main compartment, and flip it shut. Slip the Cache inside the Cadet, and pull it back out: you'll see that the Gatekeeper Rail Clips ride the rails of the Cache, allowing you to remove your laptop from the Cadet entirely while it is still encased in the protective Cache. Doing this at the airport security checkpoint means the X-ray machines (and TSA personnel) will have a clear, unobstructed view of your laptop — allowing you to keep your laptop in the Cache and the whole affair securely held together as one unit. (We think that's much better than having to remove your laptop and dump it in one of those buckets.) Many of us will appreciate this functionality on a daily basis as well: the rail system can be a convenient and quick way to remove one's laptop from the bag. If you can't find your laptop on that list, email us and we'll help.
The Cadet is made with an exterior of our U.S. made, 1050 denier, high tenacity ballistic nylon fabric, which has twice the abrasion resistance of 1680 denier fabric, and an interior of our ultra-lightweight 200 denier Halcyon/nylon ripstop fabric, made for us in Japan. Between the exterior and the lining is .25" / 6 mm closed cell foam on the front, back, and bottom — this gives the Cadet its shape and provides additional protection for your laptop; if you choose to go au naturel (no Cache), this foam will provide some protection for an unprotected laptop.
The Cadet can be worn three ways: across-body (messenger style), on one shoulder, or carried in hand as a briefcase. Shoulder strap attachment points are on the left and right sides of the Cadet and feature our exclusive (designed by Tom), super-heavy-duty DuPont™ Delrin® eye-loops, tested to 260 pounds each. Our Standard Shoulder Strap is included with the Cadet. You have the option of upgrading to our Absolute Shoulder Strap for an extra $20. Two comfortable padded handles meet above the bag's center of gravity; when the Cadet is zipped shut, the handles come nicely together so you needn't fish for them when it's time to grab and go.
The Cadet features #10 and #8 YKK Aquaguard® water-repellent zippers with metal pulls. Want cord pulls? You can buy our Cord Zipper Pulls separately here, allowing you to add them to the metal zipper pulls or replace the metal zipper pulls entirely.
The Cadet has three exterior-access compartments, six interior organizer pockets, and one exterior open-top pocket (on the back). The first of the exterior pockets is small horizontal zippered pocket. Like the other compartments of the Cadet, this pocket zips with a YKK Aquaguard® water-repellent zipper. Behind the small zippered pocket is a contoured zippered compartment that opens to about half of the height of the bag, revealing organizer pockets sized for a Magic Mouse or similar-size device, cell phone, passport, plus three pen/pencil pockets. There's plenty of additional room in this compartment for a power supply and phone charger as well — even a small notebook or snack. Inside this front compartment you'll also find two O-rings.
Inside the main compartment is a large open-top pocket: your files or magazines won't come along for the ride when you slide the Cache out at the checkpoint. Of course, the Cadet works well as a briefcase for those who eschew laptops and just want to carry files or a book or two; you can buy and use it sans Cache. And if the Cadet's native organizational structure is not enough, you can add a Tri-Star/Western Flyer/Empire Builder Freudian Slip so you can be the most organized person on the freakin' planet.
The outside back of the Cadet features a wide, quick-access pocket for a magazine or newspaper (it's the only external pocket on the Cadet that doesn't zip shut). The bottom of this pocket unzips so you can slide the Cadet over the handle of rolling luggage.
Tom designed the Cadet for people who want a thinner briefcase, straight-forward and handsome with lots of features: a safe place to carry a laptop, comfortable handles, and easy-access phone and magazine pockets. Yes, all this, plus the Cadet zips up for use in zero-gravity situations like being turned upside down in your car or under the seat of an airplane. I think we (mine wasn't the only brain working on this) thought of everything.
Sewn in Seattle
Our bags are designed and sewn right here in Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.
That allows us to be control freaks in the best way possible; we have direct control and oversight of the quality of our materials, our products, and the jobs and working environment that we help create. It also offers us a unique spontaneity: when we have an idea for a new product or accessory, we can design it, figure out how to build it, add it to our website and be ready to ship it out our front door all within just a few weeks. How cool is that?
Intrigued? You can find out more about the unusual way we do business on our Company Philosophy page.
THE BIHN Guarantee
Everything you buy from us here at TOM BIHN is satisfaction guaranteed. We’ve been in business for over 30 years and we stand behind what we make.
If something goes wrong and it's our fault, we'll fix it for free. Repairs due to normal wear and tear or due to other things that are not our fault will be performed, when possible, at a reasonable charge right here in our Seattle factory where your bag was made. Defects in materials or workmanship are uncommon and almost always evident while the product is still new. Keep in mind that bags and packs are often subject to extreme wear in everyday use: do not expect them to last forever. Only true love lasts forever! You can expect a TOM BIHN product to give years and years of hard service.