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TOM BIHN

Discussion in 'EDC Bags' started by TOM BIHN Crew, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. salve7

    salve7 Loaded Pockets

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    I would like to see a pic of the parapack as well.
     
  2. KDOG08

    KDOG08 Loaded Pockets

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    Man if only i had a gear review site.....*sigh*

    Sent from my XT907 using Tapatalk
     
  3. RobF

    RobF Loaded Pockets

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    My first Tom Bihn bag, Brain Bag with a Brain Cell, plus the Freudian Slip. It's a nice replacement from a 10 year old SpireUSA bag, better organizedand I really like the Brain Cell. Replaced the zipper tabs with paracord pulls, they were really loud.

    [​IMG]
    Tom Bihn Brain Bag by robscomputer, on Flickr
     
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  4. IgorPaes

    IgorPaes Loaded Pockets

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    Hi,

    I'm looking for a do-it-all-be-it-books-or-boots bag for the tech oriented yet classy student, who (or "whom"?) needs to travel a lot by bus but commutes on foot or riding a bicycle. Should be able to hold comfortably big loads (eletronics and/or clothes/books), while being light and compact enough so i don't feel dumb while carryng only my iPad and a notebook.

    Waterblader (camelbak-like) would be a huge, huge plus.

    Must last at least 4 or 5 years.

    Usual EDC (on student mode) is tablet (and maybe laptop), notebooks(s), book(s), an archive-like plastic paste (paste with divisions), wallet, umbrella, sunglasses, big waterbottle, jacket, cientific calculator, misc office supplies and anything i might find useful that day (spare pair of socks if it's raining, for example).

    Traveling is basically tablet, laptop, jacket, wallet, umbrella, big headphones, waterbottles, and stuff that don't fit in the airport-like bag.

    Reason for posting here: Would the Synapse 25 be a good choice?

    Sugestions?

    @edit: forgot to mention: recently, I found myself fond on messenger bags. I like the fast deployment and it looks a bit more serious, even being an Adidas (black, white details). Just sayin' I don't discard that option.

    Thanks.
     
    Last edited by IgorPaes, Nov 19, 2013
  5. KDOG08

    KDOG08 Loaded Pockets

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    Smart Alec.

    Sent from my XT907 using Tapatalk
     
  6. Imzee

    Imzee Loaded Pockets

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    I have both the Smart Alec (with lower and upper mods) as well as the Synapse 25. I have found that having both is great since one has advantages over the other in certain areas.



    I'm looking for a do-it-all-be-it-books-or-boots bag for the tech oriented yet classy student

    Both are classy though the Smart Alec does have a little more of a "rugged, bad :censored:" look especially if you have the 1 inch straps on the lower front.

    needs to travel a lot by bus but commutes on foot or riding a bicycle.

    Both have a loop to attach a bike reflector / light. However, the Smart Alec accommodates glow or reflective wire around the edges.

    Should be able to hold comfortably big loads (eletronics and/or clothes/books), while being light and compact enough so i don't feel dumb while carryng only my iPad and a notebook.

    Both the Smart Alec and the Synapse 25 can handle big loads. The Smart Alec is better at carrying large bulk while the Synapse is better at carrying a lot of smaller items.

    With just a laptop and and tablet, the Synapse 25 will look better than the Smart Alec.

    Waterblader (camelbak-like) would be a huge, huge plus.

    Neither has a dedicated pocket but they both have the nozzle holder on the shoulder straps and could easily handle a bladder in the main compartment. Though with a filled bladder, the Smart Alec will have more room to spare (in the main compartment).

    Must last at least 4 or 5 years.

    Any Tom Bihn product fulfills this.


    Usual EDC (on student mode) is tablet (and maybe laptop), notebooks(s), book(s), an archive-like plastic paste (paste with divisions), wallet, umbrella, sunglasses, big waterbottle, jacket, cientific calculator, misc office supplies and anything i might find useful that day (spare pair of socks if it's raining, for example).

    For this specific load, the Synapse 25 will be better. Though both can handle it.



    Traveling is basically tablet, laptop, jacket, wallet, umbrella, big headphones, waterbottles, and stuff that don't fit in the airport-like bag.

    The Synapse 25 can easily handle this load but the Smart Alec would do better here if your travel load has more bulkier "stuff that don't fit in the airport-like bag" items than student mode EDC.


    Reason for posting here: Would the Synapse 25 be a good choice?

    If you're leaning towards the Synapse 25, yes.
     
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  7. IgorPaes

    IgorPaes Loaded Pockets

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    Are the TB guys planning on upgrading the Synapse to be more waterbladder-friendly? Like a central O-rins in the main compartiment?

    Would the Brain be overkill?
     
  8. Imzee

    Imzee Loaded Pockets

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    You mentioned that there will be days when you only have a laptop and a tablet to carry around. So on those occasions, yes. It will be overkill. The Brain Bag is great but keep in mind that it would not be the best EDC bag for light commutes to the mini-mall to pick up an xbox game. IMHO the BB is best suited for people who look at the Smart Alec and say, "that's not enough."
     
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  9. IgorPaes

    IgorPaes Loaded Pockets

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    I see...

    Does anyone have any complaint about the Synapse being frameless?

    How well does it perform in hot weather (80-90F)?
     
  10. powerring
    • In Omnia Paratus

    powerring Loaded Pockets

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    I described some of my thoughts earlier...

    Keep in mind, my experiment was basically the equivalent of loading the Synapse 25 full of bricks.

    Synapses defy the laws of physics. You can put far more stuff in them, in an organized and accessible fashion, than any other pack I've ever owned. Your back may not defy the laws of physics though. :D

    I don't think the Synapse 19 needs a framesheet at all. It's tough to overload to this degree because of capacity. The Synapse 25 doesn't need one either, as long as you keep to realistic limits.

    Hot weather comfort hasn't been a problem for me.
     
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  11. badboyralphie

    badboyralphie Loaded Pockets

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    Weird. I just posted this in the Guide's Pack thread: "Tom Bihn Crew--It seems your bags are tested in and made for colder climates. Do you plan on making packs that are good in hot weather? I had (and loved) a Synapse 25, but sold it because it was way too hot on my back. (Well, also because it had no frame, so random things would poke me in the back.)"

    I live in the South, and this was easily the hottest pack on my back. I mean, no other pack would make my back sweat like the Synapse did just from walking two blocks with it. This on an average day...not record-breaking heat.

    The lack of a frame is a HUGE issue for me. Not because it doesn't carry weight well--it does. The straps are amazing. It's because you have to pack everything in there PERFECTLY, or some random thing can poke you uncomfortably in the back. It helps if you have a laptop on the rails, but then the o rings in the main compartment become burdensome as they impede the rails functionality.

    Real life scenario: took my Synapse out for a day of shopping with the wife in really cool weather. It was empty. I bought two light jackets, and stuffed them into the Synapse. The bulge these light jacket created made for a very uncomfortable experience. I had to stop in the middle of the mall, fold the jackets carefully, and then place them back in the bag. Say what you will, I think that's lame. Tom Bihn should put a plastic frame in there so things can be stuffed into their bags without causing discomfort. I imagine it would be easy and inexpensive to do so.

    I want to love Tom Bihn bags, but I fear they are myopically focused on allowing carefully packed items to be carried around in cold weather. That does not reflect my typical bag use at all.
     
  12. powerring
    • In Omnia Paratus

    powerring Loaded Pockets

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    Interesting. I've never found my Synapses terribly warm at all. I've certainly had packs that were worse. I live in Virginia where it's hot and humid in the summer and pretty cold in the winter. That said, I often one-strap it.

    Was the pack Dyneema or Cordura? Anecdotally, I've noticed Dyneema packs look a little more "pokey" than Ballistic or Cordura packs when filled with boxy items, possibly due to the different thickness or rigidity of the materials. The material may have affected the ventilation too. My only experience with Dyneema is with the lining of my packs. I've never had a pack made entirely of it.
     
  13. badboyralphie

    badboyralphie Loaded Pockets

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    It was Dyneema, which is an amazing fabric. I don't think it affected the poking as the back of the Synapse appears to be the same on both.
     
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  14. hawkeye180

    hawkeye180 Loaded Pockets

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    I don't think my Synapse is hotter than other bags. No matter what bag I use in the summer I get a sweaty back. Idaho summers are consistently 90-100.
     
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  15. TARFU
    • In Omnia Paratus

    TARFU EDC!!!!! Junkie

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    Pokey back and sweaty back syndrome.... this thread has gone in an interesting direction. :D
     
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  16. TARFU
    • In Omnia Paratus

    TARFU EDC!!!!! Junkie

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    I pretty much had the same experience as powerring. The S25 could definitely use a framesheet for heavier loads. I ended up shying away from it for my work EDC because I started carried more gear on my train commute downtown and my Camelbak Urban Assault pack (which has a frame sheet) did a much better job of handling the added weight. I still use the S25 for weekend duty when I don't have to lug both a heavy laptop and a tablet due to the organization. The pack has an exceptional layout.
     
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  17. Jakarta

    Jakarta Loaded Pockets

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    Darcy, do you have a picture of an empty Smart Alec laid out flat on a table with perhaps a small paperback to show its thickness?

    I am asking someone to bring a SA with him after his holidays back home in NC. He said weight would not be a problem, but the size/bulk might be difficult for him. I tried to explain that the SA could be packed flat, but unfortunately the word "rucksack" is synonym with bulk. So I am thinking maybe a picture of a flattened SA on top a table with another object for comparison might do the trick.

    Thanks.
     
  18. tosca

    tosca Empty Pockets

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    Not Darcy, but here's a pic for you (book is an ordinary paperback, not TPB)

    [​IMG]
    IMG_2271.jpg
     
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  19. Jakarta

    Jakarta Loaded Pockets

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    ^^^
    Thank you kind Sir...!
     
  20. IgorPaes

    IgorPaes Loaded Pockets

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    Do you mind making a "bag dump" video like you say here (or so i heard) to show what it can carry and how it packs?

    That's great info.

    Thank you both.
    You got to ask the right questions ;)

    Kind of a tabu, but in a showdown between the S25 and the CUA, which one is the winner?