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Laptop Messenger bag for Work and Travel

Discussion in 'EDC Bags' started by kurtz49, Feb 20, 2016.

  1. kurtz49

    kurtz49 Empty Pockets

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    I have been using a Nike backpack (unknown model as it was a corporate gift) for the past 5 years to transport my laptop and other daily needs to work (car commute, corporate environment, business casual) and for travel (by air, max one week a month). The bag has served me well but it’s getting frayed around the edges and finally the seam on one of the zippers has developed a tear so it is time for a new one.

    I have decided I want a messenger style bag this time. I need to carry a 15-inch laptop, tablet, smart phone, associated chargers, a pouch or two of various EDC items, a book, over ear headphones, wallet, keys, pens, etc. When not travelling I may use it for off body CCW as well. I am 6’5” and 240 lbs. so I am fine with a larger bag. I would prefer to have options for carrying it cross body, over the shoulder, and in hand if possible.

    When I started my search I was focused on more tactical bags, (Vanquest, 5.11, Hazard4 etc.) and I still like a little tacticool style but I soon stumbled on some of the smaller upscale brands and I am hooked. Admittedly I am as interested in style/cachet as I am function. Hear are the bags I am considering. I would be interested in any feedback on these bags or any suggestions of bags I have not listed.

    · Mission Workshop Messenger
    o Probably The Rummy size with the arkiv system. About the only thing I don’t like about these bags is the lack of a handle to carry it like a briefcase when I want to.

    · Defy Recon Large
    o Probably get the Wax Canvas and would add the Schlep pad and Mr. Groper.
    o The Defender Workcase and Ninja Zombie are similar options here. I think I like the Recon Large best of those three but would be interested in any comparisons.

    · Defy Vicious
    o With the Cobra buckles. Also no handle for carrying and I would need to buy a laptop sleeve

    · Chrome Citizen Messenger
    o Probably the Motor model but I also like BLCKCHRM or the Chicago Black Ops. Again as with all the ‘bike’ messengers no handle and I would need to buy a laptop sleeve.

    · Peak Design The Everyday Messenger
    o Possibly the most functional of the bunch but not as much the style I am after.

    · Tenba Small Messenger
    o I include this one only because it was one of the first I was considering before finding the smaller upscale brands. Similar in function to the Peak Design and by far the cheapest. I think I would only go this route if I gave up trying to make a decision and just went the cheap route.

    · ITS Discreet Messenger
    o When I heard about the new one yesterday I almost pulled the trigger immediately but as I looked at it closer it was not so clear cut. A very interesting option and one of the more tacticool.

    · Blackhawk! Diversion Wax Canvas Messenger Bag
    o I look at this like a cross between the Defy Recon Large and the ITS Discreet Messenger, but not as stylish or as much cachet as either. It is at the lower end of my price range though.

    · Timuk2
    o Too many options, but one of the messengers with a dedicated laptop sleeve. Which is the best??? This is almost the default option…who doesn’t have a Timbuk2? I even do (xs classic). Not the style or cachet I am looking for but it would be extremely functional and relatively inexpensive.


    So that’s the list. I really need to narrow this down somehow if I am ever going to make a decision! Any and all feedback is welcome. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. EZDog

    EZDog EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    I have had the Vanquest Envoy for several months a trips now and for the money especially right now it is an amazing deal in a great bag!
    The solid construction and really insane number of pockets is outstanding and the padded and pocketed insert is a unique option as well as a limited amount of Molle outside to be able to add on bottle and other pockets while not screaming Tactical,it only whispers Tactical.

    With the Envoy you don't really need to add anything to work out of it right out of the box.
    You might also wait for the new Version 3 of this bag where they return the side bottle pockets which I have now decided I am glad not to have and they add Velcro too where there clearly should have already been some and isn't.
    Of course the new one will be pricier too if that matters and again I challenge you to find anything as good even close to the price of the Envoy.

    I also have several Bihn Messengers and they are each great and don't overlook the Waterfield bags either,not tactical at all but prey capable and with some major cache in their own right.
     
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  3. kurtz49

    kurtz49 Empty Pockets

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    Thanks for the Waterfield suggestion...unfortunately my list has now grown by two to include their Rough Rider and the Cargo Laptop!
     
  4. 62Tele

    62Tele Loaded Pockets

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    I was looking for something similar a few months ago - I had wondered about the Goruck shoulder bag, but didn't grab one until they had a sale in December. Now I use it every day and wonder why I didn't buy it sooner. Only issue I have right now is that since the bag is padded on virtually all sides, accepts a Tenba padded insert easily, and just about the perfect size for my gear, I'm tempted to make it a dedicated camera bag.
     
  5. EZDog

    EZDog EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    I have 2 Waterfield Cargo's and they are sweeeeeet!
    Not a lot or organization really but very nicely put together.
    The Leather flap is well worth it as are the Cobra Buckles.
    Again though a whole other price range than that Envoy too.
     
  6. JT2V

    JT2V Loaded Pockets

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    Timbuk2 commute is probably the best of the bunch for work/travel if you ask me.
     
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  7. kurtz49

    kurtz49 Empty Pockets

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    I like the commute over the command for functionality but I like the style of the Especial Cycling Messenger.
     
  8. Stonerman33
    • In Omnia Paratus

    Stonerman33 Loaded Pockets

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    I have the Timbuk2 commute and it's a versatile bag for my carrying needs. Looks a little more "bike messenger" than I'd like sometimes, but it holds a good bit of kit.

    My other go to in this category is the tom Bihn cadet. It isn't cheap, but it does feel like it's indestructible. Plus, it'll blend in a bit better than some of the more tactical looking bags.

    I previously owned the vanquest envoy and did really like it. I just switched jobs and needed something a bit more streamlined, which is why I sold it and purchased the cadet.


    Sent from my iPhone 6 Plus using Tapatalk
     
  9. RobF

    RobF Loaded Pockets

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    You might like the Waterfield Bolt, I have this in medium and it's a good balance between enough pockets and blend in well with the office environment. I would also say any bucket style messenger bag (Mission Workshop, most of Chrome, Timbuk2) bags are difficult to manage items. My Mission Workshop is only used on extremely bad weather where I know it's well rain proof but it's a pain to put my laptop and other gear in there.
     
  10. kurtz49

    kurtz49 Empty Pockets

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    This! I came to the realization that the messenger bags I liked the most style wise just were not going to work for me functionally. I ended up ordering the Timbuk2 Command Messenger in size Large, Diablo colorway. It arrives Tuesday!
     
  11. DCBman

    DCBman Loaded Pockets

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    It's pretty hard to beat the Timbuk2 large messenger bag. They're rugged beyond belief, waterproof, have a padded laptop pocket and lots of nice features. I've used them for years. I usually choose the 'build your own' option so you can have some fun with the colors, and they build them to suit. You don't have to go with one of the specialty bags, just the plain old 'regular' style (with the laptop pocket option selected) will do just fine. Really a bulletproof bag.

    The adjustable strap mechanism that Timbuk2 uses is also pretty novel.

    I'd bought one for the wife, but she didn't really ever use it so I 'adopted' it. The new design blows away the old style, so I retired my old one and took up carrying hers.
     
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