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  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Berkeley, CA

    My kingdom for a small bag with an external water bottle pocket!

    I love all my Tom Bihn bags and they've served me well through my crazy daily non-routine routine and lots of travel. But after a few chaotic weeks of local and long-distance travel, I've been feeling the need to minimize a little. My Imago is the perfect size for everyday carry of the essentials whether I'm running around near home or traveling, but because I need at least one water bottle pocket, I've been using my Ego. Which is a fantastic bag, but as a primary everyday bag, it's a little overkill for me. Any chance we might get a smaller messenger-type bag with an external water bottle pocket?

    I've looked at the Id, but it's too briefcase-y looking and doesn't have the open, flexible capacity I love about the Imago. I have a Buzz, which is close to perfect in size and water bottle capacity, but it's not versatile enough in appearance plus the crossbody strap doesn't work so well with my bosom. And I have considered just slipping my travel mug or water bottle inside the Imago and sometimes I do, but that takes up valuable cargo space, invites more risk if it spills, and isn't as accessible.

    So anything hopeful-looking on the horizon? Am I the only one with this need unfulfilled?
    Buzz in Black, Imago in Black/Black/Steel, Ego in Black/Black/Steel, TriStar in Black, Large Cafe Bag in Black/Wasabi, SuperEgo in Black/Black/Steel, Side Effect in Plum, a couple Kits, and more clear pouches than one woman could ever possibly need

  2. #2
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Tom is working to a lot of new designs right now.

    In the meantime, the Smart Alec Lower Pocket (water bottle pocket) might be able to be anchored to your Imago.

    Lower Pocket: Adds an extra 3+ liters of volume to the Smart Alec. Fits two 1-liter water bottles, or one water bottle and other stuff, or just a lot of other stuff. Inside are two O-rings and an open-top organizer pocket sized for a wallet.

    Smart Alec Modular Pockets & Straps - Modular Pockets and GateKeeper Straps - TOM BIHN

    Check if you like the design and give a call to The Crew to see if and how you can couple it to your Imago.

  3. #3
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    I hear ya, Rhiannon! I've always got at least 1 water bottle with me, sometimes a travel mug too in the fall/winter...and a couple of sippy cups as well

    I've experimented with a few things like: packing my LCB just so, so that a water bottle is wedged in an upright position in the corner and using a stuff sack within the LCB so as to help contain any possible spilling/condensation. I also have a Co-Pilot and I really like its dedicated water bottle slot but it's 10L and more compartmentalized which can be a positive or a negative, depending on its purpose.

    I find that the Synapse 19 is the best in terms of flexible space and I gravitate to it most frequently. It also has the dedicated water bottle slot- and I think it's a bigger slot than the Co-Pilots, so it can fit a mid sized thermos. Plus the side pockets of the S19 can fit standard sized plastic water bottles even when the middle water bottle slot is being used. I like the S19's inner pouch as well, as it corrals sippy cups and water bottles pretty well and keeps it separate from other things in the main compartment. I'm an at-home mom so my life is pretty casual and thus the casualness of a backpack isn't often an issue. And backpack straps don't have the bosom issues that some sling/cross body bags do

    That being said, if the TB Magic Elves were to produce what you're suggesting, I'd be all over it!

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Seattle, WA (home of Tom Bihn)
    I agree 100%!

    I currently have a Super Ego which I absolutely love especially since it has an external water bottle pocket however lately I've been finding that it's been a bit too much for what I need now. I've been considering Ristretto for a 13" MacBook Pro however the only drawback, as you already know, is that it doesn't have an external water bottle pocket. I can't bring myself to purchase one right now because of that.

    I really hope that Tom Bihn offers some sort of Ristretto type bag in the future that has some sort of external water bottle pocket as it sounds like there is a demand for such a bag.

  5. #5
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Toronto, Canada (GMT+5)
    If your Imago is a perfect EDC except for the water bottle pocket, you could get a water bottle holder like the SealLine holder. What I like is you have the option to hang it off your bag via a vertical or horizontal connector.

    SealLine® Water Bottle Pocket

    If your concern is that liquid will leak into your bag if you put your water bottle in, perhaps use a Contigo Mug with locking autoseal technology.

    Contigo - Travel Mugs

    I like the Aria line - it has autoseal technology and a locking mechanism so the button to open the mug is not accidentlly jammed open.


  6. #6
    Forum Member dorayme's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    tiny rural town in the Piedmont of the Carolinas
    have you considered the co-pilot? It has a built in water bottle pocket and the capacity is a little less than the Imago. With it being offered in Ballistic nylon or 400D weight Dyneema you can have a structured, or less structured look.
    I really, really like TB Bags!

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