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eristick
01-15-2005, 11:48 AM
Okay, Tom, I want to re-open this discussion (it got lost when the forums went kaplooey.)

Carry-on travel bags, for those of us who wish to avoid getting our luggage lost or schlep around with a suitcase, are expensive, ungainly, poorly designed, and increasingly oversized. You are totally the guy for this job.

That bag I want:
* Conforms to actual carry-on standard size.
* Is convertible between backpack straps and a shoulder strap.
* Has a waist strap for stability/to prevent back strain, removable chest straps if needed.
* Has a much better compression setup inside. Two narrow straps are only slighly suckier than X-shaped straps. Please think of something brilliant.
* NO WHEELS!
* I won't say no frame in all caps, but if there is any kind of frame, it better not weigh anything.
* Some sort of lock or clip for all zippers to help avoid pickpockets, without actually requiring keys and locks to get to the stuff.
* Handy zipper pocket on outside somewhere that's reachable without taking off the whole bag.
* Lock-able for real, with locks, when necessary.
* Thingy for water bottle.

(I believe you already are aware of One Bag (http://www.oratory.com/onebag/home.html) ?)

maverick
01-15-2005, 09:58 PM
eristick,

why would you be against wheels?

for weekend trips, i like to pack a bag like the ID (http://www.tombihn.com/id/) or SmartAlec (http://www.tombihn.com/smartalec/) for my notebook, etc. or my tenba camera bag (which also holds my notebook) along with a small carry on suitcase on wheels.

I've carried a large shoulder bag that actually accommodates more than the small suitcase. both are made by briggs & riley and are quite heavy without anything in them. i prefer the suitcase on wheels over the shoulder bag because it's a lot easier to pull something on wheels behind you than to carry something heavy on your shoulder or your back. i can also attach my ID and SmartAlec to the suitcase by the attachable strap on top of the suitcase.

you really appreciate the wheels if your trip requires you to take a connecting flight :-). about all i want to carry on my shoulder or back is what my SmartAlec will hold (which is quite a lot).

do the wheels not work for the application you have in mind?

i'd like to see a poll of what people like to carry for short (e.g. weekend) trips.

maverick

Cobos
01-16-2005, 05:29 AM
On my last trip from the US I seem to recall that I only had the ID as my carry-on bag, but I did have 2 large suitcases as well. And here is the main reason I think none of Tom Bihn's bags should have wheels. I usually have wheels on my larger checked-in suitcases and you run out of vacant hands to pull the wheel equipped stuff real quick.
Second of course is the fact that Tom Bihn himself has said that he doesn't like luggage with wheels, and thus I doubt he has any experience making any suitcase with wheels or has anyone to buy the wheels from etc. So a big startup cost in both money and time to make that first wheel equipped bag. But of course we'll have to wait until Tom Bihn himself or Darcy or someone else answers this to get to know that for sure...

But that being said I would also be interested in a bag similar to what the OP suggested. Even though I normally like to be able to use my carryon as a daypack as well when I arrive at my destination.

Cobos

eristick
01-17-2005, 06:29 AM
1) Wheels are about only useful in an airport -- they're maddening on cobblestone or uneven sidewalks.

2) Wheels are heavy, and require weight-adding structure, if the bag is to be any kind of durable. Plus, the bag then has to be reinforced against the wear-and-tear of having the wheel structure. It adds up.

3) If they are to be of any use on anything other than an airport floor, the wheels have to be larger. Small carry-on suitcases with wheels that don't suck are generally in excess of the official guidelines for carry-on baggage. (Actually, the ones with small wheels are also frequently too big.)

I'm not talking about weekend trips, I carry-on only for one and two-week long vacations! If I can't carry it on my back in a carry-on, it doesn't come with me. I bring a small bag to use as a daypack. (For weekend trips, I just use my ID.)

eristick
01-27-2005, 11:44 AM
Having just returned from Paris with my old cheapo bag, I reiterate the necessity of a minimal-weight bag. My significant other's carry-on bag (small flight case) had to be checked on the return flight because his two bags together exceeded the 12 kilo weight limit by three kilos. (This was not extra-souvenir-weight -- we were simply not asked to weigh our bags for the flight over.) Weight-restrictions are not as commonly enforced as size restrictions, and it was clear that these restrictions were not evenly enforced on our flight, but frustrating, nonetheless.

Also, regarding the original list, a water-bottle thingy, on second thought, is not really a priority.

I saw a cool backpack that had additional compression straps on the outside to further smoosh the back and front closer together. The backpack was a little too "backpacker" for my taste, but I liked the extra straps.

eristick
02-01-2005, 01:55 PM
I really like this (http://www.rei.com/product/47830555.htm) bag, except for the lack of assurance that it provides enough compression for contents. (I can use those sleeves, too, but I need the bag to provide some compression!) I do particularly like that this bag is more professional than backpacker-looking.

Tom Bihn
02-17-2005, 01:47 PM
Hey, thanks for the link to One bag. Very cool.

All the reasons that eristick gave for not making wheeled luggage are ones that I fully agree with. In addition, there are literally hundreds of manufacturers making wheeled luggage, while no one seems to be making the perfect bag for eristick.

(That being said, we are looking into sources for all of the hardware and parts required to build wheeled luggage. Who knows where this will lead?)

What we always say is: Siquid mantica non capit, domi relinquendum est. This translates to "If it doesn't fit in your knapsack, leave it behind.".

I am working on sketches and prototypes for a maximum carry-on sized soft luggage piece that will convert into a backpack. We will not use a frame, but we do intend to make it out of Ballistic nylon which is a heavy fabric that maintains its shape.

Questions:

Should we also make it available in a lightweight fabric, sacrificing the durability of Ballistic nylon?

I am considering using YKK's splash-proof zippers for better protection against the elements. However, a lockable slider is not available for this type of zipper yet. Which is more important - a splash proof zipper or a lockable zipper? Keep in mind that you can always put a luggage lock through the standard holes on the splash-proof zipper.

moriond
02-17-2005, 06:54 PM
Tom Bihn asked
Questions:

Should we also make it available in a lightweight fabric, sacrificing the durability of Ballistic nylon?

I am considering using YKK's splash-proof zippers for better protection against the elements. However, a lockable slider is not available for this type of zipper yet. Which is more important - a splash proof zipper or a lockable zipper? Keep in mind that you can always put a luggage lock through the standard holes on the splash-proof zipper.

Please use the splash-proof zippers; these are really great on the Buzz and I would go for the extra durability and protection. By the same token, I personally would prefer the durability of Ballistic nylon.

The link to the One Bag was interesting, but it made me think about whether there are better carrying options than that single, long, padded strap.

I think there's a market for a better designed carry-on. I'd also like something that could hold a laptop/Brain cell, but which has more space than the Empire Builder and which could go as carry-on, but that should probably go into a separate thread and request (maybe a larger Empire Builder?). Maximum compression would not be an issue here.

eristick
02-18-2005, 08:07 AM
Tom:

THANK YOU! (I've been holding off on buying a bag until I found out whether you would make one.)

Stick with the heavier fabric -- I agree that using ballistic nylon will eliminate the need for a frame. Lighter fabric saves me that extra pound or two, but it'll slump all over the place and I'll wish it had a frame, which would make the bag heavier than if you'd just used the ballistic nylon in the first place. Unless...well, I'm guessing that it's not worth it to combine the two fabrics in the design?

Splash-proof zippers. Protection from the elements (and I'm visualizing of all the under-the-bus cargo areas and wet sidewalks) is more important.

After looking at pictures of a zillion other bags, then re-visiting my first post, I say this: Screw the other stuff, just give me brilliant compression and stowable waist/harness straps in a bag that does not look too backpacker-y that meets carry-on restrictions when fully packed. With a little style.

Adequete support is key. This bag will be holding 25-30 lbs of stuff, and I'm a pretty small girl. My current cheapo bag just kills my back because of the sag & lack of waist strap.

I find the MEI "Voyageur" pack pretty unappealing-looking, though it is the bag currently on the market that most meets my needs.

Moriond: The long shoulder strap allows you to maneuver your bag better when in close quarters, like standing on a croweded bus & making your way down the aisle on the plane.

moriond
02-19-2005, 09:27 PM
Originally posted by eristick

Moriond: The long shoulder strap allows you to maneuver your bag better when in close quarters, like standing on a croweded bus & making your way down the aisle on the plane.
Eristick: Thanks for the comments. I was actually thinking about the design of the strap in your link (to the JanSport Modus Convertible Carry-On Luggage at the REI site) rather than the value of having a long shoulder strap (" . . .it made me think about whether there are better carrying options than that single, long, padded strap.")

Because the bag can be fairly heavy and the strap will be long, I'd like to have a really comfortable shoulder strap option -- not just the straight sliding pad of that figure. The absolute strap that Tom Bihn sells is very comfortable, even when used with heavier bags. On the ID bag, which is a great design overall, I'd have to say that the strap, relatively speaking, is the weakest feature. I don't mind having to adjust this (the first time) at both ends, and the width of the strap is a plus, but the straight, slider shoulder pad is less than optimal.

I'd prefer a curved pad, but with the way it attaches to the two ends it would be difficult for people to adjust (shifting from one side to another), and would probably be more expensive to make and design cleanly. It's not so much of an issue here, because even stuffing the ID bag pretty full, you won't get near the weight of this carry-on. But it will be an issue for the carry-on.

And I also want something that works well for smaller, female, builds. Large backpacks often seem designed for people who have broad, flat backs. The Buzz, however, is really great for small people, too.

eristick
02-21-2005, 06:57 AM
On the ID bag, which is a great design overall, I'd have to say that the strap, relatively speaking, is the weakest feature. I don't mind having to adjust this (the first time) at both ends, and the width of the strap is a plus, but the straight, slider shoulder pad is less than optimal.

Oh, I see. I agree with this. It never occured to me that the slider pad on the ID would bug me, but I've never used a bag quite as much as I've used the ID, either. And I find that the adjustment of the strap length does slip in teensy tiny increments, too, until I'm suddenly perplexed as to how my strap got so long and have to readjust. But this isn't a serious complaint, it's just, as you said, the weakest feature of a fantastic bag.

There are plenty of backpacks designed to distribute weight better for the narrower female back and shoulders, but they are all backpacker-style packs. This is more important to me if I were hiking -- it wouldn't be a major issue for me with this bag. Walking all day on uneven terrain is a whole different ballgame than walking a mile or two to the hotel from the train/bus station.

aakepley
02-22-2005, 07:54 AM
There are plenty of backpacks designed to distribute weight better for the narrower female back and shoulders, but they are all backpacker-style packs. This is more important to me if I were hiking -- it wouldn't be a major issue for me with this bag. Walking all day on uneven terrain is a whole different ballgame than walking a mile or two to the hotel from the train/bus station.

I think this is more than distributing weight better for the female body as some bags are physically too big for smaller people to carry. A maximally sized carry-on (22" by 14" by 9") is going to be too wide and too long for my body. It would be nice to see a petite version of this bag that would be a inch or so narrower and a couple of inches shorter. This would even be convenient for larger people traveling abroad as some international airlines limit carry-on size to 19" by 13" by 9" (particularly for travel that's not to or from the US) and its hard to find a bag here in the U.S. that meets these requirements.

(Note: For me at least, comfort is king. After schlepping my bags all the way around the world through more airports than I care to remember, I want a bag I can carry around for long periods of time and not regret it the next day.)

Another unrelated suggestion I have for this bag is to have at least two compartments: one for clothes and another for a computer. With more than one compartment, you can take your computer out in the middle of a meeting without worrying about your underwear spilling all over the conference room table.

I look forward to seeing this bag!

Amanda

P.S. Go for the ballistic nylon. It holds up really well when abused which is key for luggage.

eristick
02-22-2005, 08:51 AM
You brought up a point that I wanted to make too, which is that the size should be under the "maximum" size to allow for the bulge of a stuffed bag and also to provide some extra assurance that it will indeed be accepted as a carry-on for international travel.

22" by 14" by 9" would actually be a bit over, even by American standards. Tom, let this serve as a warning -- don't fall for the "creeping bloat" syndrome!

moriond
02-23-2005, 01:05 PM
Originally posted by aakepley
I think this is more than distributing weight better for the female body as some bags are physically too big for smaller people to carry. A maximally sized carry-on (22" by 14" by 9") is going to be too wide and too long for my body. It would be nice to see a petite version of this bag that would be a inch or so narrower and a couple of inches shorter. This would even be convenient for larger people traveling abroad as some international airlines limit carry-on size to 19" by 13" by 9" (particularly for travel that's not to or from the US) and its hard to find a bag here in the U.S. that meets these requirements.

Yes, it's not a question of weight, but shape and size. I agree with aakepley and eristick that you don't want this to be as large as 22" X 14" X 9". Some overhead storage bins in the smaller aircraft used by feeder airlines won't take something this large, and you need to allow for how much bags are stuffed. The key point, though, is really how comfortably the bag is shaped to carry and move around while maintaining its capacity. Not to keep harping on the Buzz, but this is the only bag for which I regularly use the snaphook for keys. And that's because when I want to get something out of the front pocket, I can slip the bag around so that the zipper is at exactly the right position to access (while I'm still carrying this on my shoulder), and so that the keys attached to the snaphook come easily to hand without getting in the way of anything else. It's these kind of design details -- the comfort when you shift bags around and still find things distributed well and compartments easily to hand -- that I'd like to see factored into the new carryon bag design.

eristick
05-19-2005, 07:29 AM
After a few recent trips, man, do I wish ferverently for this. On one trip, I had to...Check A Suitcase. Egads. It was horrible. What's the status, Tom? (Um, no pressure, of course.)

dsg29
05-24-2005, 07:13 AM
Once again I had a week-long business trip and once again my Smart Alec was incredibly perfect. I guess what I'd want in a superduper carryon to accompany it would be somewhere in the neighborhood of this, from Red Oxx: http://tinyurl.com/9ejqk/ ,though of course I'd be happy to see what Tom's working on. If my business travel schedule starts heating up over the next few months (as I suspect it will), I'll be seriously in the market for one of these critters. I agree with what's been said above: ballistic nylon, the kinds of zippers my beloved red Smart Alec has, and as much interior space as possible, since this is a bag that would have to support me for up to a week, and include some bulky stuff I can't leave at home. Oh, and definitely no frame!

Bohemianne
07-12-2005, 07:24 PM
Another unrelated suggestion I have for this bag is to have at least two compartments: one for clothes and another for a computer. With more than one compartment, you can take your computer out in the middle of a meeting without worrying about your underwear spilling all over the conference room table.

Ditto! I often have to travel for business just for a night, and I spend the night before, pack up, and carry some sort of luggage to whatever I'm attending the next day. It would be fantastic to have a front panel for just biz stuff... in my case, iBook and usually a couple of one-inch-thick manuals.

Usually I make do with a duffel (which tends to cause the whole panties-on-the-conference-table scenario), or a small wheeled suitcase, which is better with the panties but I still have to dig around, because I can't fit my manuals in those small front pockets. I used to have an unstructured (no frame) backpack from REI that converted into a duffel, and that was good except it just doesn't work when image is important.

Anyway, kudos that you're undertaking this project! Rock on, and I can't wait to see the results.

bagenvy
07-13-2005, 01:17 PM
I've had an ID for about a year and love it. I am now looking for a carry-on overnight bag to hold a change of clothes and some toiletries and it's pretty much a requirement that I buy a Bihn. Do you guys think the SmartAlec would be sufficient for this (too cramped?) or should I wait for the Aeronaut?

teresa
07-13-2005, 02:27 PM
Hello,

I recently took a trip to Canada and carried a Smart Alec as my sole piece of luggage. I had with me 2 pairs of pants, 4 shirts, a jacket, my 12" Powerbook, Jimi wallet, all necessary documents, a toiletry bag, a book and various assorted undergarments. I could have carried a couple other small items as well. I would say it will definitely accommodate what you're looking to carry for an overnight trip. Of course, you might want to wait and be the first cool kid on your block to own an Aeronaut. It just depends on the immediacy of your need.

As always, I hope to have been helpful.

Your friendly Tom Bihn Shipping Manager,
Teresa

matthewz
07-13-2005, 10:09 PM
Love Tom's stuff, and enjoy contributing my $.02 whenever new designs are mentioned, so here goes:

Ballistic Nylon only as needed -- you certainly know the wear spots for your products, and can make sure it's used where needed.

Internal compression/organization systems are an interesting thought. I always liked the Freudian Slip, although my Snake Charmer is all I really need with my Brain Bag and Lap Dog.

Eagle Creek already makes excellent organizational stuff for the inside of your bag, but Tom could probably make a more minimalist take on their stuff, for the true "weight weenies" among us.

I think waterproof zippers and DWR (Durable Water Repellent) coatings certainly have their place. I like the idea of DWR, a fabric treatment the user can refresh as needed. Perhaps a waterproof zipper or DWR pouch for one section of the bag that simply MUST stay dry.

My vote is for Tom to make an intelligent shell, that doesn't beat up the user when it's loaded to it's best carrying capacity. The velcro sling that's integral to the Brain Cell/Lap Dog design could be very effective here. Of course, we seem to be asking Tom to reinvent the stuff sack, or at least make us one in Wasabi :rolleyes: .

Another thought -- is "bulletproof" a requirement for a bag we want to ride in the cabin with us? I'll be damned if Samsonite's Gorillas will ever get their simian mitts on my carry-on bag.

Discuss.

- Matthew Z.

leuvenator
07-14-2005, 02:36 AM
After carrying a SmartAlec through a few African airports and on a few African airlines -- yeah. If you travel anywhere but cosmopolitan cities, the bag is going to get the piss beaten out of it, even if it's just in the cabin. I've had Air Cameroon flight attendants shove the SmartAlec into the back corner of a luggage bin past all kinds of ragged bin parts, stuck it under my seat in an African minibus taxi, had it strapped to the top of a retired school bus serving as the same (that time it got stuck next to a crate of chickens, though it's probably better than the goat that was *inside* the bus), and had it tumble down the stairs of an Air Gabon flight when the attendants insisted on looking at it on the landing to "make sure it would fit" (read: see if there was anything inside that they might like to have). I guess if I was only doing consistent JFK-CDG travel on nice subways and in clean cabs, the durability wouldn't matter . . . but anything I own has to be able to take a serious, third-world style beating. Both the SmartAlec and the Buzz have performed like champs (and the splash-proof zippers are a Godsend in rainy season -- which it is right now here in Cameroon).

matthewz
07-14-2005, 09:53 AM
Nice feedback there. Yeah, I've been fortunate to travel to more "civilized" locales for the most part. Got a great 3-lb. backpack, but the shell is light, and it simply wouldn't survive the abuse of regular luggage. Never mind how much fun it is to bring a back with a full harness and sternum and waist straps on an airplane, then stow it.

I definitely prefer my bags with minimal straps and such on the outside. The Smart Alec came along some time after I got my Brain Bag, or I'd be using a Smart Alec myself.

Can't wait to see what Tom has in store for us next.

Cheers,
Matthew Z.

Siv
07-14-2005, 07:26 PM
I trust this new bag will have room and clips for a braincell/monolith...

aakepley
07-17-2005, 01:05 PM
Even in the continental US, I have to gate check my larger carry-on bag when I fly on smaller planes (regional jets, turboprops, etc.), so I think a tough bag is essential for travel.

Although previously I had indicated that I might like the carry-on to hold both my computer and my clothes, after further thought I think it's not necessary. Most of the time I travel with two bags: my carry-on, which contains all my clothes, etc., and my personal item, which contains all my electronic goodies. That way if I have to gate check a bag I don't have to root through my carry-on to get out my computer. I know this goes against the "one-bag" mentality, but it does allow me greater flexibility with my bags, both in the airport and out of it.

Security is also a concern. I'd like a bag that I can easily lock. While locks aren't going to deter a serious thief, they do prevent someone from unzipping the bag (especially when its on your back).

bbcamp
07-19-2005, 02:00 PM
Dear Tom:

A good carry-on bag is greatly needed. It is a subject which has been much on my mind, since I just replaced a 15-year companion which finally wore out..

I ultimately settled on two choices: a Red Oxx Air Boss and a Patagonia Maximum Legal Carry-On (MLC). for now, I am using both bags interchangably , though the Patagonia gets a little more travel time.

First, my travel has its quirks, which color my needs. I often go for short trips–say, a weekend-- but my main travel is on fairly long voyages, often lasting three to twelve months. Thus, I need not only a good carry-on bag, but also one which can do double or triple duty while I am away.
I am a researcher, and when I travel, the carry-on bag has to hold a computer, and whatever research notes I make, as well as a change of clothes. This means I need a bag which is capable of carrying a very heavy load over a long distance. The shoulder strap attachments MUST be robust. (sorry to shout, but this is one point where often very good bags fail miserably), and it needs a comfortable and balanced handle. To give you an idea of what I mean, I just returned from a two-month trip, and my carry-on bag weighed just under 30 pounds when I walked through my front door.
I also have an absolute requirement for a bag I can use for shopping at the grocery or farmer’s market–part of the double-duty I mentioned. That means washable, lightweight, not flashy and with a fairly large main compartment. As an example, three days ago I walked to the local grocery, and came back with six 1.5 liter bottles of water (that’s nearly 20 pounds by itself), a bottle of wine, two boxes of cookies, 12 lamb chops and a dozen peaches. and on my way back home, I stopped at the bakery for bread, a total of 20 minutes of on-shoulder carry time.

I have other requirements for a bag:

1. It must fit real-world carry-on requirements. Even packed, it has to fit in the overhead bin. (Though I actually once ordered a custom version of a commercial bag, which is just a bit over-sized when I pack all the pockets full. For airplane travel, I simply leave a pocket empty....)

2. It needs a large main compartment, which is capable of holding my large, European leather book bag/briefcase. Hiding the book bag/briefcase/computer bag so that what you carry doesn’t scream “steal me”is a main function of a good carry-on bag. (See #8 below).

3. It must have an easily accessible, but reasonably theft-proof external pocket for plane tickets and ID. My two current bags each have this feature. One has the pocket oriented horizontally and high-up on the outside of the bag, and this seems to work best–items inside are always easily accessible, whereas with the vertically oriented pocket, a full bag puts enough pressure on the bag that the contents are compressed, making them sometimes difficult to extract, and small items at the bottom are very hard to fish-out.

4. It also needs an easily accessible large pocket for magazines, and any other quick purchases made while running through an airport. This also makes the magazine (etc) accessible during the trip. This pocket should remain accessible and open while the bag is being carried (see #5).

5. Of course, a carry-on bag needs a comfortable and robust carry handle on one side and on one end (or both ends), plus a robust and comfortable shoulder-strap. Handles and strap need padding, but also must be balanced, so that the bag tends to ride in the hand or on the shoulder without slipping or twisting.
Some bags have a single handle, others have a two-part handle with one on each side of the bag, which mate in the middle to be carried. The two-piece handle has the advantage of being better balanced, sharing the load better between the two pieces. It also, if the straps are long enough, has the advantage of being able to carry a jacket or sweater or coat by laying it on the outside of the bag between the two handle sides. This is actually very useful: often I wear a coat until my bags are checked, then take it off for the trip. This way, I can carry an extra and often bulky but necessary piece of clothing, without sacrificing valuable suitcase-space, and in a very accessible manner. (This is the one major problem with one of my current carry-on bags: it only has a one-piece handle, and so carrying a jacket is difficult.)
But a bag with a separable, two-piece handle must leave at least the “magazine” pocket free outside the handles. Otherwise, it is too difficult to quickly stick something in an outside pocket without stopping, separating both handles, and then re-closing them, particularly if one is also carrying a jacket between them.

6. I actually like one large main compartment, with one, preferably two smaller but still reasonably large compartments, one on each side of the main compartment. All major compartments need internal compression straps. (one bag I have uses a floating mesh panel with adjustable straps and clips on each corner. It is removable and csn be adjusted for irregular loads).

7. The bag’s zippers should open all the way, so the bag can lay flat for packing. (See the comments on the onebag web site: http://www.onebag.com/home.html)

8. I don’t like to stand out when I travel, and don’t belong to the fancy-suit and limousine-set. that means I don’t want a bag which is too flashy. The bag shouldn’t scream “computer”, “gringo”, “drugs”, “valuables to steal” or anything else. By all means, make the new bag in lots of colors, but please also in basic black. And though it may sound a little odd, I also don’t want a bag which looks too military. In some parts of the world, that invites unwanted attention. Please, make it sleek and “plane-Jane” on the outside. For this reason, I am also against water bottle pockets: they look stupid, and they indicate (rightly or wrongly), that the carrier is from the US. If you need a bottle of water, put it inside.

9. I agree with the comments in the thread on “no-wheels”. Wheels only add weight and steal space from a carry-on bag. (But I’ll never travel without wheels on my checked luggage, if I can help it).
But the same can be said about both padding and dual, backback-style shoulder straps. I seldom if ever carry a carry-on bag like a backpack (though that would add to its versatility, another of my requirements...) If I am going to hump a backback, I’ll use a real pack for my carry-on bag. No carry-on compromise can ever come close to the comfort of a real backpack suspension, at least not without adding a great deal of weight which is unnecessary in everyday use.
Still, many people like the option. If such straps are included, they should be robust (do you see a theme, here?), but as light in weight and as unobtrusive as possible. If padding is considered necessary in the bag, then please, please make it removable for those of us who like an unstructured bag. (A thick, narrow piece of foam which can be velcroed to the bottom is actually a good idea, and not only for computer-carriers). Another problem with backpack-style straps is that they rob you of a useful pocket on half of the bag. But this is probably as much a question of habit and taste than anything else. One of my current bags has back-pack straps, which I never use–but I do use their compartment for magazines and newspapers. The foam padding is fairly light, while having one side of the bag smooth does make it easier to carry. So I am not completely against straps and padding, provided they are robust, removable, and unobtrusive. (But note that my other carry-on comes standard with non-removable padding, and I had to special order it without any.

Sorry for such a long post, but I’m a real bag freak, and just came home from a long trip where I put two new bags to the test. I love my Tom Binh Café bag and my Brain Cell, and can’t wait to try a Tom Binh carry-on.

Best!

bbcamp

Tom Bihn
09-01-2005, 07:49 AM
Hey folks-
I've built one prototype that I used on three trips in July (a busy July!). I wondered around downtown Oakland California for most of an afternoon with the thing fully loaded and as a backpack it carries quite comfortably (I went to Smythe's Accordion Center http://www.smythesaccordioncenter.com/ to look at a single-row button accordion). As soft luggage it was a dream: either of the "end" compartments (which are top & bottom compartments when it's on your back) easily hold my size 12 running shoes, and the main compartment swallowed all my clothes for a week away from home. In a pinch I was able to squeeze my Buzz with my 12" PowerBook into the main compartment as well, which was great for riding the bus and walking around town.
Traveling by AmTrak to the city of Vancouver (for the Vancouver Folk Music Festival) again the bag was pretty much all I could want: taking the SkyTrain and walking about downtown was all good; on a car camping trip to the north end of Vancouver Island I used it simply to organize all my personal clothing and gear in the back of the car . It carries fine by its padded handle (same as on the Brain Bag), and rides on a should strap OK too.
I'm calling it the Aeronaut and will be working on further prototypes for some freinds to test on a trip to Chinqua Terra in Italy.
Stay tuned!

dsg29
09-01-2005, 08:03 AM
Ooooh, Tom, the Aeronaut sounds intriguing. Can't wait for more details.

eristick
09-01-2005, 09:51 AM
Tom, you're my hero. I can't wait to see the finished product.

HappyJ
09-01-2005, 08:49 PM
Hi Tom:
As others have voiced, I'd prefer the bag not have a dedicated section for a laptop. Would a separate section (water proof) for dirty clothes be posssible? They're pretty handy. And definitely Ballistic nylon or at least most of it. Compression straps in the inside, as well as outside would be great. But I think they're more useful in the inside.

I'm really looking forward to the Aeronaut! Could you post some pictures? :-)

Zultner
09-03-2005, 08:20 PM
My carry on bag must hold my computer -- which requires a 2XL Brain Cell bag. I currently use a Brenthaven bag which is OK, but I would much prefer to clip my 2XL Brain Cell into my carry on -- as I do with my Brain Bag for my smaller laptop. That way I can just pull the Brain Cell out for commuter flights, carry my 'puter on board, and gate check the carry on bag.
Ballistic nylon is a must, as is the option of an all black exterior. A color interior would look nice, and make it easier to find things on red eye flights.
And the back of the bag has to fit over the handle of wheeled luggage securely -- for those times when I have checked a wheeled bag.

Darcy
10-04-2005, 10:13 AM
I had a chance to test the prototype to see how comfortable it is on my small 5'5" frame. It's very comfortable. I think we're going to make a few tweaks to the shoulder straps. It's coming along nicely.

eristick
10-04-2005, 11:15 AM
Whoo hoo! What's the ETA? Is it too much to hope that it will be ready by Spring?

bbcamp
11-21-2005, 08:52 AM
Tom, can those of us who have posted to this thread please, please have a preview?

Pretty please?

Darcy
11-22-2005, 03:10 PM
The Aeronaut abroad, modeled by FOT (Friends Of Tom):

http://www.tombihn.com/Merchant2/images/aeronaut1.jpg

http://www.tombihn.com/Merchant2/images/aeronaut2.jpg

http://www.tombihn.com/Merchant2/images/aeronaut3.jpg

http://www.tombihn.com/Merchant2/images/aeronaut4.jpg

gtie97
11-23-2005, 03:26 PM
The Brain Bag is 18x14x9. This bag is 22x14x9 but it looks a lot bigger than just 4 inches taller. I guess the cube shape accounts for the perceived visual difference. Can't wait until you start taking preorders!

plaidboy
11-27-2005, 02:01 AM
That is a pretty sexy looking carry on. Dammit, I think I'll have to get one.

I went to Europe for a couple of weeks to go to Oktoberfest in September. I was mostly successful in packing light enough to go carry on only. I used an Eagle Creek rolling suitcase. Rolling was pretty useful, but kind of a pain when walking a mile and a half to your hostel.

One thing I could have used was a waterproof compartment so that I could throw wet/dirty clothes or a wet towel in them without having to worry about them getting my clean clothes wet/dirty. Even better if it coul have some good ventilation so that the items might dry out in transit. The end compartments seem like a good candidate.

Speaking of which, do the end compartments each fit one shoe or one pair of shoes? Be great if you could fit a pair in each. I never have a place for shoes.

bshort
11-29-2005, 10:48 PM
What will the price be?

It looks like a fantastic bag. I've been looking for a good two day travel bag for a while now and this looks like what I've been looking for.

topperge
12-09-2005, 09:27 PM
I travel every week of the year (gotta love consulting, no not really) anyways, as soon as your looking for someone to put this new bag through the paces let me know. I'm planning on buying one as soon as it comes out either way. I fly 2-3 times a week and I'm sure I'll hit just about every type of plane and situation there is. I can't wait to get my hands on one. My brain bag is over a year old and still looks as good as I got it.

eristick
12-11-2005, 09:02 PM
This is so exciting. More pictures! Looking forward to ordering! Any color decisions made yet?

JoelSmith
12-12-2005, 07:24 PM
I've been waiting for this bag for quite a while. How soon can I pre-order? and will is be available in black?

Thanks!

leftistelf
12-13-2005, 07:57 AM
A key consideration is international travel where carry-on dimensions are smaller than in the US. Would be great to have US version and a smaller version for overseas travel.

Darcy
12-14-2005, 12:20 PM
Colors haven't been officially decided, but I do think we will make the Aeronaut in Crimson, Solid Black, and Steel. We're not sure how popular the bag would be in Grape or Kiwi -- what do you guys think?

This bag is so good looking it's like the colors flatter it. I think my favorite color is the Crimson.

I believe the bag will be available for pre-order in late January. We're still working on a few details, including price.

I had the opportunity to try on the "smaller person" version and it was great. Somehow the bag doesn't look absolutely huge on me like the Brain Bag does.

eristick
12-14-2005, 06:31 PM
I think grape and kiwi may be a bit much, but what about some of the other not-so-screaming colors? Plum, sage, olive, or cocoa? (I would LOVE this to be available in cocoa.)

More details! More! Yay!

moriond
12-16-2005, 02:35 AM
I think the 1050 denier ballistic nylon restricts you in color, so you can get grape but not plum -- that was my original question for the LUX bag. That means you can probably get the outer bag colors of the Empire Bag, Smart Alec, and Lux, for example. Sage should be a possibility, and maybe charcoal. I'd guess that they can't do cocoa, or that would have been an obvious color offering (for the Lux bag, too).

Darcy
12-16-2005, 10:33 AM
moriond has it right -- the Aeronaut will be made out of Ballistic, which we have in colors: Steel, Crimson, Black, Kiwi, Sage, and Grape.

I think we are planning to make a few in Sage.

JHowe
12-19-2005, 08:32 PM
Hi Darcy

Can you please us a head's up when the aeronaut is available. I am very interested.

J

Tolovana
12-28-2005, 01:48 PM
I have to vote for Cocoa too!

leftistelf
12-28-2005, 04:06 PM
please, please, please - make a version for international travel. I know this has been posted by myself and others, but I don't want the point to be missed amidst talk of colors.

If you can't do a 3 country/1 week business trip with this bag to Europe or Asia, this really wont meet the need of international travellers that need to check the bag once arriving on another continent...

I flew Air France last month, and I must say that I was surprised how small the Airbus storage bins are. My wife's wheeled bag barely fit...and its a bit smaller than most.

eristick
12-29-2005, 07:30 AM
leftistelf, why do you think that this bag is too big to be a permissable carry-on for international travel? All airlines have slightly different standards, but a bag with total dimensions of 45" conforms to the general standard for European and Asian airlines. I've found that most European/Asian airlines are more concerned with weight. One of our completely size-appropriate bags had to be checked on a AirFrance flight last year because it was 1k over the 12k maximum!

gtie97
01-17-2006, 04:00 PM
Tom, s'il vous plaît commencer à expédier ce sac. Je ne peux pas prendre la prévision!

Darcy
01-20-2006, 03:37 PM
More details and pictures soon...

I think the Aeronaut will be available for pre-order within the next few weeks.

eristick
02-10-2006, 04:20 PM
More details and pictures soon...

I think the Aeronaut will be available for pre-order within the next few weeks.

Darcy!!! It's been three weeks. I'm possessed with anticipation for this bag. You guys are killin' me. News? Photos? Details?

Darcy
02-10-2006, 04:33 PM
It's our new marketing plan! Make people go crazy waiting...just kidding!!

We're working on pictures right now. Here are the first pictures I took of the bag. I don't think they are very good, so we're going to take new pictures. But they are something to look at!

As for the bag itself, the design is pretty much completed and it is already on our production schedule.

http://www.tombihn.com/blogimages/aeronautside2.jpg

http://www.tombihn.com/blogimages/aeronautback.jpg

backpack
02-18-2006, 12:35 PM
Darcy, the new marketing plan is working!!!! :)

In what color will the Aeronaute be available?

What do you suggest as an alternative to the monolith to carry two laptops in the brain bag?

eristick
02-20-2006, 09:04 AM
moriond has it right -- the Aeronaut will be made out of Ballistic, which we have in colors: Steel, Crimson, Black, Kiwi, Sage, and Grape.

I think we are planning to make a few in Sage.

See the quote for available colors.

Darcy
02-21-2006, 11:04 AM
Color update: The Aeronaut will be available in Steel, Crimson, Black, Kiwi, Sage, and Hunter Green (only one in Hunter Green -- we're testing this color to see if we like it). No Grape -- sorry!

backpack -- I think using two Monoliths inside the Brain Bag, in each compartment, would be the best solution if you need to carry two laptops. Is there a reason why this doesn't work for you?

eristick
02-22-2006, 08:13 AM
Thanks for the pictures! Sooo, when do we get to order? 'Cause I need two.

Tom Bihn
02-22-2006, 08:26 AM
We are actually making only ONE in Hunter Green, just to see if we like it. If any forum reader simply must have that color, contact Darcy to reserve it for you.
Darcy and I hope to have it up on the website for pre-ordering in the next few days; the design glitch with the new 4X Brain Cell has bumped production back maybe a week.
I use one of the earlier prototypes on my weekly trips to Seattle, basically living out of it for a few days at a time: I LOVE THIS BAG and I hope when you get one you'll agree it was worth the wait. Sorry for the delays!

topperge
02-22-2006, 06:16 PM
backpack -- I think using two Monoliths inside the Brain Bag, in each compartment, would be the best solution if you need to carry two laptops. Is there a reason why this doesn't work for you?

I think I'm going to have the same problem, I get two carryons for the plane, but I can't wear a brain bag and the aeronaut on my back at the same time. I'm going to need an over the shoulder solution for my laptops

Darcy
02-23-2006, 12:49 PM
I think I'm going to have the same problem, I get two carryons for the plane, but I can't wear a brain bag and the aeronaut on my back at the same time. I'm going to need an over the shoulder solution for my laptops

The Aeronaut has a super-comfortable handle, and it also has attachments for a shoulder strap (I'd recommend using the Absolute Shoulder Strap (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/TBP/TB0505).) You can definitely use it as an over-the-shoulder bag.

backpack
02-28-2006, 01:51 AM
Color update: The Aeronaut will be available in Steel, Crimson, Black, Kiwi, Sage, and Hunter Green (only one in Hunter Green -- we're testing this color to see if we like it). No Grape -- sorry!

backpack -- I think using two Monoliths inside the Brain Bag, in each compartment, would be the best solution if you need to carry two laptops. Is there a reason why this doesn't work for you?

I need one Monolith for the ibook 12" and one for the ibook 14". I understand one of the size I need in not in stock right now and I am concerned about the weight. Would a Soft Cell be lighter?

Also I fear that a Soft Cell could slip out of the Brain Bag in the security shuffle.

backpack
02-28-2006, 02:01 AM
Color update: The Aeronaut will be available in Steel, Crimson, Black, Kiwi, Sage, and Hunter Green (only one in Hunter Green -- we're testing this color to see if we like it). No Grape -- sorry!

Why not in Blue? Sorry for being a pest :)

Darcy
02-28-2006, 03:04 PM
The Aeronaut page is up (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/_all/TB0906) and you can now place a pre-order for the bag, which will ship in early April. Our factory is working on the Aeronaut as I type.

What do you think of the Aeronaut? Click on the Details button or the 'Want to see larger pictures' link. Are the larger pictures of the bag helpful?

I know we need to add some interior shots that feature the pockets. I'll work on those in the next few days.

backpack --

A Soft Cell would be lighter, but it doesn't provide the hard-shell protection of the Monolith or clip inside the Brain Bag, and both of those features sound important to you. The Size 4 Monolith you need for your 14" iBook will be out soon, definitely by late March and most likely before that (our factory has been working hard.) If you're sure you want the Monolith, I'd recommend placing a backorder for it now. People who place backorders or pre-orders often receive the product before it is officially in-stock.

We'd love to make the Aeronaut in blue, but we just haven't found Ballistic Nylon in a blue color that wasn't ugly. We'll keep looking.

renegadeot
02-28-2006, 06:31 PM
What do you think of the Aeronaut? Click on the Details button or the 'Want to see larger pictures' link. Are the larger pictures of the bag helpful?

I know we need to add some interior shots that feature the pockets. I'll work on those in the next few days.

Looks really great, the large pictures really help. The page mentions packing cubes? Any more information about accessories for this bag?

backpack
02-28-2006, 11:33 PM
The Aeronaut page is up (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/_all/TB0906)

and you can now place a pre-order for the bag, which will ship in early April. Our factory is working on the Aeronaut as I type.

What do you think of the Aeronaut? Click on the Details button or the 'Want to see larger pictures' link. Are the larger pictures of the bag helpful?

I know we need to add some interior shots that feature the pockets. I'll work on those in the next few days.







backpack --

A Soft Cell would be lighter, but it doesn't provide the hard-shell protection of the Monolith or clip inside the Brain Bag, and both of those features sound important to you. The Size 4 Monolith you need for your 14" iBook will be out soon, definitely by late March and most likely before that (our factory has been working hard.) If you're sure you want the Monolith, I'd recommend placing a backorder for it now. People who place backorders or pre-orders often receive the product before it is officially in-stock.

We'd love to make the Aeronaut in blue, but we just haven't found Ballistic Nylon in a blue color that wasn't ugly. We'll keep looking.



The big pictures are Great, would you be able to post pictures of the differents colors and pictures also pictures of the interior of the Brain Bag including the pockets

I would love to set up a sleek and chick Aeronaute, Brain Bag, Monolith set.

Could you tell me which of the straps work with both the Aeronaute and the Monolith, and would be comfortable and not slide from my shoulder.

Tom Bihn: Cool stuff and great people.

Thanks Darcy :)

Cobos
03-02-2006, 03:47 AM
My girlfriend/fiance always goes all crazy when she sees products in purple, any chance that you could make the Aeronaut in a purple color ?

I really like the look of the A but my only problem with it for my own use is that I usually bring a large wheeled suitcase and one piece of handluggage when I travel abroad. The handluggage has been the last years a Smart Alec or a ID bag. And the advantage of that is that the Smart Alec and the ID also works excellently as a daypack when I arrive at my destination, while I image the Aeronaut would not be very convenient as a daypack. So let's say I bring my ID and the Aeronaut or the Smart Alec and the Aeronaut. How would it work to carry them both ? One over each shoulder ?

Cobos

Edit: Darn keyboard, can't even spell my nick right :)

Joy
03-02-2006, 09:42 AM
Ooh, I love it! I can't wait to see the pictures of the inside (it would be nice to see how it looks packed, partly packed, and empty, to give a sense of scale).

I usually use my Brain Bag as my main bag when I travel. (I've even checked it a few times, and it always comes through fine.) So now I just need to figure out how to justify this bag to myself. :) How is the capacity compared to the Brain Bag? Does it carry much more?

Are the black straps on the sides just to help the bag keep its shape, or do they have some other purpose?

Darcy, you might want to take a look at the Aeronaut FAQ and fix the "Is the Brain Bag available in stores?" question. ;)

Cobos
03-02-2006, 10:54 AM
Looking at the info section on the website it seems the Aeronaut is a little bigger than the Brain Bag (and that seems to match the pictures we've seen of the Aeronaut on people).
Brain Bag = 2200 cubic inch = 36 liters

Aeronaut = 2700 cubic inch does NOT equal 22 liters but actually 44 liters
(the Aeronaut page says 22 liters)

The black straps on the sides are the handles made to help you ease the bag in and out of overhead storage bins or so I thought from the descriptive text on the Aeronaut page.

Cobos

Joy
03-02-2006, 12:20 PM
Aha, you clearly read more carefully than I do, cobos. Thanks for the info.

Cobos
03-02-2006, 12:33 PM
You mean, me being obsessive :)
The liter thing was just because I never got my head around cubic inches and the fact that they say the Aeronaut is a lot smaller than the Brain bag seemed "odd" :)

Cobos

bbcamp
03-03-2006, 09:08 AM
WooHoo!

the Aeronaut page looks good. Can we please have interior shots?

Does it have tie-down straps on the inside, to keep stuff from shifting? How wide is the central opening?

I want one--but ironicaly, can't order it yet--I'm on a trip and away from home for the next four months. Just have to wait......

Tom Bihn
03-03-2006, 10:47 AM
Colors: someday we may do it in a blue, but having dye lots of ballistic nylon made (in this country, no less!), is a huge investment, so we try to minimize the number of colors we offer in ballistic. The Kiwi color is someone else's dye lot from which we have been invited to nibble :)

Straps inside: I've been using various prototypes of this bag for almost a year now, and I've found the "bookends" effect of the end pockets to really help keep folded clothing in place and have had no problems that inside straps would solve, IMHO. I will get right on those packing cubes though!

Regards carrying the Aeronaut AND another bag: I've carried the Aeronaut both as a backpack and at other times by a shoulder strap concurrently with my Imago ( a sort of smaller ID bag or larger Cafe bag, which is being sampled in the factory as I write this!) and while less than ideal for much distance, it worked OK. When I had to walk across the city of Oakland one day last summer (I exaggerate only a little), I simply squooze everything into the Aeronaut and happily carried it as a backpack.

Replacing a roll-aboard with an Aeronaut? Like we say in the FAQ, if you are physically fit and know how to travel light, the Aeronaut could be the answer.

More pictures? I agree - Darcy and I will work on that as soon as we have a final product from the factory (the crimson one pictured has the inside mesh pocket mentioned in the description, but I redesigned it just before it went into production).

eristick
03-03-2006, 11:55 AM
Straps inside: I've been using various prototypes of this bag for almost a year now, and I've found the "bookends" effect of the end pockets to really help keep folded clothing in place and have had no problems that inside straps would solve, IMHO. I will get right on those packing cubes though!
My only concern about packing cubes is whether they provide compression and not too much bulk? I find the internal compression of most bags to be not great -- the X kind tend to be cheapo and weak, and the two parallel straps ignore the middle third of the bag -- but I really rely on being able to compress contents, particularily when I'm living out of a carry-on for a couple of weeks. Limited compression is better than none.

Maybe those packing cubes could be designed to specifically provide compression to the contents of the cube? Maybe some sort of integrated strappy system on the outside that can be tightened?

P.S.
I hate the plastic-bag compressors. That plastic material is just horrid.

P.P.S.
Is this Imago something that's slated for future release? 'Cause...hmmm. Interested.

Cobos
03-03-2006, 01:33 PM
Hmm the fact that you can use it together with another bag is really making this a good bag... And I should be leaving on vacation this summer...sounds like a perfect time to test out a new bag :)

Cobos

leftistelf
03-11-2006, 10:01 PM
... I will get right on those packing cubes though! ...

Any ETA yet?

dsg29
03-12-2006, 08:31 AM
I just pre-ordered a crimson Aeronaut. The good folks at tombihn say it should ship sometime in April. As for the packing assistance, I have a set of Eagle Creek Pack-it folders that have served me well. They're very light, secure with velcro, and come in a bunch of sizes.

aggiemle
03-12-2006, 02:53 PM
I think the Aeronaut is a wonderful idea. I am just AMAZED at the back pack straps on the duffel bag, and the fact that the straps are able to tuck away... wonderful!

I'm pretty small though, so I'm holding out for the debut in May of the option for smaller back pack shoulder straps. Great Idea. I agree that pictures of the inside would be helpful. I just bought a small cafe bag and LOVE it.

Thanks for all the hard work and awsome products!

Joy
03-13-2006, 08:40 AM
Any comments on what the Sage looks like? In a whole bag, does it give more of a 'grey' impression or a 'green' impression? Is the Hunter Green bag still available? If so, is there a sample of what the colour looks like around? I couldn't find it in the 'colours' panel on the bags I looked through.

Cobos
03-13-2006, 12:05 PM
Joy: I'm not sure if Sage gives a green or grey, but if you look at the Smart Alec pictures you should be able to see what it looks like on a bag.

Cobos

plaidboy
03-13-2006, 04:56 PM
I saw a pic of the hunter green. It's pretty sexy. I almost got it, but opted for the Crimson instead. Hopefully I'll get it before my trip next week.

plaidboy

gtie97
03-15-2006, 08:26 AM
My travel took me through Seattle yesterday and was able to swing by the Tom Bihn store while doing a quick tour of the town.

What a great experience! The store and manufacturing shop is on the 2nd floor of the Outdoor Research property. It is a great location, right next to the harbor and ball parks. A quick elevator ride takes you to bag utopia. Basically, if you are a bagaholic, this is not going to be a quick visit. Amy was extremely friendly and helpful; I wish I could get this type of service at all stores.

I asked if I could see an Aeronaut sample, Amy was kind enough to bring one from the shop into the store. I wish I had gotten the name of the manufacturing associate, but she really helped me see what makes Bihn bags so great. Folks, let me put it this way, the people that build these bags care WAY more about the manufacturing quality than pretty much anybody else I come across (I am an industrial engineering consultant and spend my time working in process improvement, lean manufacturing concepts, etc). I received a quick tutorial on seams, bindings and material types. I was very impressed; there is a lot of craftsmanship and pride in these bags. I would suggest that it would be great to see a section on the web site devoted to the shop and these behind the scenes craftsman.

The Aeronaut itself is going to be a real hit, I like the three pocket design more now that I have seen the bag. It is going to offer a lot of packing options and the ability to keep items separated but quickly accessible. The shoulder straps are nicely executed and stealthy tuck away when not in use. Anyone who travels and prefers wheeless bags will find the Aeronaut an upgrade over what they are currently using. I'm not sure how well it will work as a single bag for packing and business items. Possibly placing your laptop, folder, binders on top of the middle compartment with a smaller version of a Freudian Slip in landscape would do the trick. Otherwise, you will need to carry the Aeronaut and a second bag for business trips.

dsg29
03-15-2006, 08:42 AM
Waitwaitwait. You said next to the ballparks? Oh my. I MUST find a way to get myself to Seattle (I'm a baseball nut, and Safeco is on the list of parks I'd like to see in person).

I'm even more excited to receive my Aeronaut now. Most of my travel is for business, and my intent is to continue using my SmartAlec for the laptop, and the Aeronaut for everything else. If this bag is what it appears to me, I won't have to check anything on 2-4 day trips, even in the winter (when clothes are bigger and bulkier). Walking off the plane and heading to the hotel (or client) would be a welcome change, and the Aeronaut might just facilitate that. I'm glad to hear that the in-person experience was so good in Seattle, though I'm not all that surprised, given their obviously fanatical devotion to getting it right.

Darcy
04-04-2006, 04:00 PM
A First Look at the Aeronaut by Imago Metrics (http://www.tombihn.com/blog/node/138)

Zephyrnoid
04-11-2006, 01:35 PM
Darcy Thanks for the plug!
I just returned from the Mexico trip and the Aeronaut performed like a champ.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v226/zephyrnoid/TBAe_1.jpg
Full Review>
http://www.imagometrics.com/GoBags/Aeronaut.htm

it's hard to believe I attended a wedding on Saturday the 8th of April in Mexico City, bridged by 4 days of casual sightseeing etc- completely out of the Aeronaut and a small camera bag. I did have to do some improptu laundry at the hotel- but still- I came home wearing a clean outfit.
I made pix of the content modules prior to leaving and listed all the contents by item and quantity. Net weight going out was 23lbs for packed Aeronaut. Only one pair of shorts went unused (It wasn't THAT warm out)
I even managed to get some cool pix of it en-route as it were.I have to tell you that airport self-portraits are a pain to shoot!
For about 15 minutes on the ride home- I just sat in my seat- Aeronaut across the aisle -and watched as it shared overhead space with clumsy incoming wheelies, more paper bags and baggage-rules-illegal behmouth luggage. I measured 6" of extra space between the Aeronaut and the hatch door with the Aeronaut oriented perpendicular to the hatch opening.
Carried it on my back for 1 hr as I 'hiked' up and down IAD,GVA and MEX airports waiting for boarding. Lovely feeling. As smooth as the Brain Bag!
Mucha Gracias!
Aten
A First Look at the Aeronaut by Imago Metrics (http://www.tombihn.com/blog/node/138)

Zephyrnoid
04-11-2006, 04:34 PM
Not yet noted in my Aeronaut report is that I didn't use locks on the maiden voyage-but rather security ties that have to be cut to separate the zipper pulls. They worked beautifully as did all the TSA compliant locks we tested!
... Keep in mind that you can always put a luggage lock through the standard holes on the splash-proof zipper.

Joy
04-24-2006, 09:59 AM
What are the snaps on the "floor" of the Aeronaut for? They look like they are sort of attaching the sides to the bottom...?

Darcy
04-24-2006, 10:19 AM
Joy,

Here's how Tom explained the snaps to us:

"The snaps hold the end dividers in place to help maintain the shape of the bag when loaded and define the three compartments. They are mostly to facilitate the final construction of the bag: if the customer unsnaps them, the main compartment engulfs the end pockets and the bag essentially becomes one compartment."

maverick
04-24-2006, 10:53 AM
i'm very excited that a crimson aeronaut is on its way to me. i have a few trips planned this summer and will report how the aeronaut works out.

i normally have a bag like the smart alec or id with me to hold my computer and some other on-board necessities. for the business trips, i am going to see if i can put the brain cell (size 4) into the aeronaut instead.

while at my destination, i should be able to use the absolute shoulder strap from the aeronaut with the brain cell.

maverick

dsg29
04-24-2006, 11:07 AM
Maverick-
You're doing exactly what I'm doing. My crimson smart alec and my crimson aeronaut will be my constant travelling companions. As noted in another thread, I just received my aeronaut, and I'm overjoyed with it. My SmartAlec will contain my laptop (in a Monolith) and all other hard-copy files, work-related detritus, along with my wallet, sunglasses, books, etc. The Aeronaut will easily hold the clothes, toiletries and other sundry stuff. Short of the really big trips, I shouldn't have to check anything again!

Joy
04-26-2006, 06:45 PM
The waterproof zippers on the Aeronaut are really nice, I've never seen anything like them before. Now that I'm looking for them, I see from the pictures on the website that most of your bags - the ID, the Smart Alec, the Buzz, the Empire Builder, use the same zippers. But the Brain Bag has the more usual type of zipper, with a piece of fabric folding over as a rain guard, instead. I was wondering what the reason is for this choice?

moriond
04-29-2006, 03:07 PM
Until pictures of the new Aeronaut in other colors make it to its product page, the blog post about the newly back in stock Smart Alec (http://www.tombihn.com/blog/archive/2006/4/28) is probably the easiest way to select and compare colors. Each of the five initial color offerings for the Aeronaut (Crimson, Black, Sage, Kiwi, and Steel) is shown on that page. Having all the colors up at once makes comparisons easier, in case you want to know, for instance, how much greener sage is than steel.

I'd also like to point out that the LUX bag (http://www.gearlive.com/index.php/news/article/tom_bihn_interview_05011111/) packs really well into the central section of the Aeronaut. In flattened form, it almost exactly matches this compartment, and provides a contrasting background similar to what you have in other Bihn bags. The bottom of the interior to the main compartment of the Aeronaut otherwise has a black (200 denier) nylon lining with a grid of white lines (somewhat like a quadrille-ruled pad of graph paper). The same material is used around the borders of the zippered mesh pocket on the underside of the top flap. This can be viewed in the picture at the imagometrics review site (http://www.imagometrics.com/GoBags/Aeronaut.htm) if you pause the browser animation showing the fully packed Aeronaut in the "opened" position -- the pattern can be seen in the thin strips on the left and right sides of the underside of the open flap. Similar lining is used on the right and left sides of the main compartment.

Anyway, with the LUX bag packed at the bottom, I get the same contrasting crimson color of the outer Aeronaut in the interior. Very handy if you will be needing another bag at your destination, or for use at a meeting where you are picking up other material as described in this post (http://forums.tombihn.com/showthread.php?p=2356#post2356), since the LUX bag has a larger holding capacity than the large cafe bag, yet probably packs flatter. When traveling by air, I agree that you probably want to carry your laptop in a second bag (Brain Cell, ID bag, Buzz, Smart Alec, etc.) that is reinforced and more accessible for inspection.

Sacharissa
05-18-2006, 06:31 AM
I've been saving my pennies and was just getting ready to order the Aeronaut, when I notice that Sage is no longer a color option...Any chance this will be brought back? I would REALLY like the Sage for this bag!

Packie
05-18-2006, 08:49 AM
Hi, I couldn't help noticing the early discussion concerning the importance of a good waist belt in a backpack carry-on. I'm 5'5'', but I have a short back and narrow sloping shoulders, which makes carrying 22 lb in a backpack without a good waist belt very unpleasant.

That is why I'm wondering, if there is any particular reason for not including a waist belt in the Aeronaut, when it can be found in the Brain bag. Will the Aeronaut version for "smaller people" differ from the normal version in any other way, except for the specially modeled backpack straps? Are you offering the same colors?

Otherwise: Great job designing the Aeronaut!! It looks amazing :-)

eristick
05-18-2006, 09:05 AM
Hey, I was thinking Sage too -- getting a new supply of material before the smaller-frame Aeronaut debuts? Please?

moriond
05-18-2006, 02:03 PM
Hey, I was thinking Sage too -- getting a new supply of material before the smaller-frame Aeronaut debuts? Please?I called in about this yesterday, since I requested sage for the smaller-frame Aeronaut that I'm still waiting for. Those smaller-frame models will be available in the originally specified range of colors (i.e. you can order sage). However, it's probably a good idea to give inputs for preferred colors now, since they're trying to decide on future color options. I gather that hunter green may be added.

I boosted this color up in my selection options based on the final Aeronaut design and some of the early review statements. I think it will hold up better against dirty pavements, etc. (see the Imago Metrics review (http://www.imagometrics.com/GoBags/Aeronaut.htm) mentioned in the April 12, 2006 (http://www.tombihn.com/blog/node/144) Tom Bihn blog), while at the same time providing a nice color contrast with the black trim used on the handles and zippers. Since there's not a second interior color (light-weight design, remember?), this also gives a little bit more color contrast on the inside (although the "bottom" is lined with 200 denier nylon in a grid pattern; see May 15, 2006 (http://www.tombihn.com/blog/node/154) Bihn blog entry and linked detailed review with pictures).

For a more somber color choice than the very popular crimson displayed in all Aeronaut pictures to date, sage seems to be a good choice. YMMV. (And apparently the color sell-out order for the regularly sized Aeronauts was first the crimson, and then the kiwi and sage, leaving the current steel and black colors still available).

Joy
05-18-2006, 02:57 PM
I gather that hunter green may be added.I've got one in Hunter Green that I really love. It's a nice bright color, definitely noticable and easy to find and describe, but not quite as screamingly bright as the crimson. ;)

chess
05-21-2006, 02:18 PM
Count me in as another vote for bringing back the Sage! It's beautiful and pleasant without being flashy.

In fact, I was planning to order a Sage Aeronaut before realizing it was sold out. It's by far my first choice of color. My second choice would be Sapphire, to match my Brain Bag.

Zephyrnoid
05-22-2006, 04:23 PM
Hunter Green is a Sartorial color indeed. We see lots of it around where I live ( Horse Country MD) The Crimson Aeronaut is not Screaming bright actually.After working with VizGuard fabrics - I KNOW screamingly bright. The Crimson projects a very neutral red and is a nice standout on the conveyor belts. I call it Rojo Picante Jaleo
I've got one in Hunter Green that I really love. It's a nice bright color, definitely noticable and easy to find and describe, but not quite as screamingly bright as the crimson. ;)

aggiemle
06-10-2006, 05:33 AM
do we have a time frame for the smaller version? I thought it was sometime in May, but don't seem to find it on the web site...

Just
06-14-2006, 10:28 PM
From the Aeronaut page: "A version of the Aeronaut with shoulder straps designed for smaller people will debut in late July."

*falls over and dies from the prolonged anticipation* LOL

Tom Bihn
06-15-2006, 11:08 AM
It's looking like late July. They are being cut in the next day or two! Thanks for your patience.

timofei7
06-16-2006, 01:52 PM
I'm wondering, if there is any particular reason for not including a waist belt in the Aeronau

I second that. I also like a bag to have a decent waiststrap. Not necessarily a very big one, just enough to take a bit of the load off the shouldiers. I might try to rig one up myself. hmm. But I think it would be a good improvement in general.

Zephyrnoid
06-20-2006, 08:54 PM
Great design is often about what one leaves out rather than how much one can put in. I thought about the waist belt then thought hard about how the Aeronaut is used versus 'dedicated' backpacks. It doesn't need one. It's not ever going to replace a 3 day assault pack or.. the Brain Bag, besides, the extra bulk and fuss of the strapping would make the currently elegant stashability noticiable- or so methinks.

I second that. I also like a bag to have a decent waiststrap. Not necessarily a very big one, just enough to take a bit of the load off the shouldiers. I might try to rig one up myself. hmm. But I think it would be a good improvement in general.

Darcy
07-03-2006, 04:31 PM
Zephyrnoid has it -- that's exactly why the Aeronaut doesn't have a waist strap.

The Aeronaut Breve (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/TBP/TB0906) ("smaller" Aeronaut) is now available for order. Note: The Aeronaut Breve ships early August.

Just
07-03-2006, 04:58 PM
The Aeronaut Breve (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/TBP/TB0906) ("smaller" Aeronaut) is now available for order. Note: The Aeronaut Breve ships early August.

OOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!

Zephyrnoid
07-05-2006, 12:57 AM
Aeronaut Breve? Could use that tomorrow on the quick get-away from Rimini to Venice, although my Aeronaut wants to visit Venice too!...and so it shall. "Forza Italia!!" .
Zephyrnoid has it -- that's exactly why the Aeronaut doesn't have a waist strap.

The Aeronaut Breve (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/TBP/TB0906) ("smaller" Aeronaut) is now available for order. Note: The Aeronaut Breve ships early August."Forza Italia!!"

eristick
07-05-2006, 06:22 AM
Zephyrnoid has it -- that's exactly why the Aeronaut doesn't have a waist strap.

The Aeronaut Breve (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/TBP/TB0906) ("smaller" Aeronaut) is now available for order. Note: The Aeronaut Breve ships early August.

MUCH better name than "smaller-framed-person Aeronaut." :)

chess
07-06-2006, 08:12 AM
What are the chances of there being more colors available again within the next few months... dare I say SAGE?

alouzan
07-11-2006, 06:07 AM
I would love a Sage Breve! I have been hinting to my husband for months that this would be my luggage of choice! I don't travel much but on occassion I go with him to a convention or even . . gasp. . on a vacation and this would certainly cover all of my needs!

Thanks for Listening!
Alouzan!

Sacharissa
07-12-2006, 11:55 AM
Yes! Yes! Sage, please!

Darcy
07-17-2006, 12:30 PM
Introducing: Tom Bihn Packing Cubes (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/_all/TB091)

dsg29
07-17-2006, 12:38 PM
That's so cool. Thank you Darcy, Nicole and everyone. I'm in the process of moving to a new house. As soon as that's done, I'm ordering a bunch of these.

eristick
07-20-2006, 08:41 PM
Sorry I didn`t have time to post before I left...but I am now in Montreal. The Aeronaut is perfect, the packing cubes work better than I even expected, and I today I took the Imago on a long bike ride down the Canal Lachine.

Plenty of pictures of the bags, packing, and me-wearing-the-bags when I return early in August.

Zephyrnoid
08-02-2006, 07:20 PM
Ok. So many of us have used the Aeronaut for Carry On Right? Well hey, I'm in a daring mood so the next week I'm trying something different.
I'm curious to see how much shopping will fit into an Aeronaut worn as a backpack. So all next week, I'll fill it with my groceries and other purchased goodies! Think of the plastic I'll save- Oh! I'll be on my bike too.
Pix to follow

AndrewGHo
08-11-2006, 03:14 PM
This is a fun discussion thread, and I just wanted to add a post here about my personal experience with the Aeronaut.

I started doing research on travel packs earlier this year for a May/June trip to Japan where we were going to move between cities and hotels a bit. There are actually a number of travel pack choices out there, you can find the fruits of my research on my website: http://www.zeuscat.com/andrew/personal/info/travelpacks/

I stumbled on the newly released Aeronaut and ordered one in basic black, with an Absolute shoulder strap. Total cost including shipping to California was $192.

I flew carry-on with the Aeronaut, with a mini Timbuk2 messenger bag as my personal bag. I also had a small Jansport daypack stashed in the Aeronaut for day to day use. My girlfriend used a Victorinox duffle and a Krumpler camera bag (her digital SLR and lenses took up a lot of room and weight, so I carried toiletries, books, and other shared items). Our carry-on-only setup held enough for 15 days of travel through Kyoto, Nikko, Osaka, and Tokyo, doing a couple rounds of light hotel-room laundry.

The Aeronaut carried comfortably on the shoulders, although I don't recommend walking more than a couple miles with it in humid weather while lost, like we did! The sternum strap was essential given that there isn't a waiststrap. Being able to stow the straps was great for when we were in the hotel, or just waiting around in the airport. The Absolute shoulder strap is very nice, although I only ever used it when boarding or exiting the plane (it's nice to hold a bag in front when walking through a narrow aisle). I absolutely loved the end grips, they're very convenient for slinging the loaded bag around!

I'm only 5'6" and not particularly broad-shouldered, so I wish the Breve had been an option when I ordered. However, I found the straps on the standard Aeronaut to be pretty usable, although I notice that to fit me comfortably, I have to cinch the straps almost as tightly as possible.

The Aeronaut packing cubes weren't yet available when I ordered, so I ended up using some mesh drawstring bags for organization, which worked out okay, but more internal structure would have been nice (I lined some of the softer sections with my travel books, which worked okay, but wasn't very elegant).

I didn't find the small outer zip pocket very useful, since I already had a small bag for plane tickets, etc. that I never took off. I also agree that one downside to a non-wheeled bag is that it's hard to balance multiple bags on your body (for example, the Timbuk2 would flop around my front side while I had the Aeronaut on my back). My recommendation would be to choose a secondary bag with a handle.

By the way, when I passed through work while getting a ride to the airport, a bunch of co-workers ooh'ed and aah'ed over how nice the bag looked, too. One co-worker, who is indeed a Mac geek with hipster black glasses and everything, came to check it out, and said "nice bag! oh, it's a Tom Bihn, say no more..." which I guess is a nice compliment.

Since the Japan trip, I've also found the Aeronaut useful for transporting bulky stuff (like taking a huge picnic blanket to the park). It's certainly a little large for everyday use, though.

Overall, I found the Aeronaut to be an excellent travel pack and would definitely recommend it.

Just
11-07-2006, 04:51 PM
The Crimson Aeronaut is not Screaming bright actually.After working with VizGuard fabrics - I KNOW screamingly bright. The Crimson projects a very neutral red and is a nice standout on the conveyor belts. I call it Rojo Picante Jaleo

I just wanted to say that I *absolutely LOVE* the Crimson color on the Aeronaut! Looks much better in person than on the webpage! (It looks good on the webpage too, but seriously... I LOVE the color!!!)

mruseless
11-16-2006, 09:27 PM
I'm a big advocate of the "bundle wrapping" and bundle folding (without a center core). However, these methods are easiest with a bag that unzips to lie flat when packing (like the Red Oxx Air Boss).

How does the Aeronaut do with bundle wrapping? (I'd have bought one already were it not for this nagging question)

Just
11-16-2006, 10:52 PM
I'm a big advocate of the "bundle wrapping" and bundle folding (without a center core). However, these methods are easiest with a bag that unzips to lie flat when packing (like the Red Oxx Air Boss).

How does the Aeronaut do with bundle wrapping? (I'd have bought one already were it not for this nagging question)

I think it would do just fine... you'd just have to bundle wrap/fold outside of the bag, and then put your bundle into the bag. Really, compared to the Aeronaut, the Red Oxx Air Boss just bulges too much to be an ideal bag for me (despite being designed by Doug Dyment)... and without bulging, each compartment is a bit on the thin side. Save for the middle compartment, but that's not really meant for clothes.

eristick
11-17-2006, 03:47 PM
I do a modified version of bundle wrapping, using the packing cubes, with my Aeronaut. Instead of bundle wrapping everything together, I divided clothes into a couple of categories for wrapping & rolling. Photos are posted here (http://forums.tombihn.com/showpost.php?p=2887&postcount=2).

mruseless
11-24-2006, 04:12 PM
Has anyone tried either the Tough Traveler "Tri-Zip", or the Easy Going Carryon? These are the other two bags that Doug Dyment recommends on Onebag.com in addition to the Red Oxx Air Boss.
E

Zephyrnoid
11-28-2006, 05:56 AM
This is a late follow-on report on this test.
The result is that the Aeronaut mades an excellent backpack and in my case, managed to contain a week's worth of groceries for a 3 mile bike ride to and from the store with only a little wobble (from lack of waist strap)
Ok. So many of us have used the Aeronaut for Carry On Right? Well hey, I'm in a daring mood so the next week I'm trying something different.
I'm curious to see how much shopping will fit into an Aeronaut worn as a backpack. So all next week, I'll fill it with my groceries and other purchased goodies! Think of the plastic I'll save- Oh! I'll be on my bike too.
Pix to follow

Packie
12-02-2006, 06:13 AM
Has anyone tried either the Tough Traveler "Tri-Zip", or the Easy Going Carryon? These are the other two bags that Doug Dyment recommends on Onebag.com in addition to the Red Oxx Air Boss.
E

I have the Tough Traveler "Tri-Zip" bag and I like it very much! Even though, I have never used the Aeronaut, the difference between these two bags is mainly the inside layout. The Tri-Zip has three different compartments that stretch over the whole bag, whereas the Aeronaut has one big compartment in the middle and two small ones at the ends. These structures work in different ways and the key question is really to define what kind of structure you'll need.

I'm a student and my travels often include a "pack your own sleeping bag and sleeping mattress" clause. I can fit both of them + some other small items in the clothing compartment of my Tri-Zip. Then my clothing (for a weekend), laptop, toiletries and other small items go in the two other compartments. However, this would not work with the Aeronaut, since its main compartment is not long enough for my sleeping mattress.

To Just:
I agree on the fact that a three compartment bag bulges very easily, if your gear is even the slightest thicker than the compartments. Nevertheless, the Tri-Zip is one inch thicker than the Red Oxx Air Boss :-)

I like the removable hip belt of the Tri-Zip. The shoulder strap is, however, only a simple strap without any comfortability factor. I mainly use the bag as a backpack, but when carrying it through airport security I really appreciate my TerraGrip shoulder strap.

Just
12-03-2006, 12:53 AM
To Just:
I agree on the fact that a three compartment bag bulges very easily, if your gear is even the slightest thicker than the compartments. Nevertheless, the Tri-Zip is one inch thicker than the Red Oxx Air Boss :-)

Haha my complaint is more along the lines of "but if it bulges so easily, I'll never know if I'm packing too much or not!" (also translated as "how much bulge is excessive?") ;)

Although one can usually use the measures of "does my shoulder feel like it's about to fall off?" or "do I feel myself listing to one side?" instead of the visual estimates. =P

I think the Tri-Zip's compartments are compartmented better than the Air Boss' though - with one larger compartment towards the wearer's body and the two smaller ones away from. (correct if wrong, just guessing from pictures)

...oh hey, I didn't know the Tri-Zip came in different colors!

But what's this? It looks like a conspicuous American flag on the outside of the Tri-Zip bag!

Packie
12-03-2006, 05:56 AM
lol, ok Just, I get the picture =)

The inner depths of the Tri-Zip compartments are: 2", 2.25" and 4"




But what's this? It looks like a conspicuous American flag on the outside of the Tri-Zip bag!

You just take a pair of scissors and, voilà!

PM4HIRE
12-12-2006, 04:49 PM
My carry on is a medium size Bailey duffle, click http://www.baileyworks.com/catalog/product.cfm?id=5 to view. Simple functional design.

Tom in AZ

Just
12-12-2006, 05:38 PM
lol, ok Just, I get the picture =)

The inner depths of the Tri-Zip compartments are: 2", 2.25" and 4"


Neat! Thanks!


You just take a pair of scissors and, voilà!

Point taken. :)

TdeF
03-04-2007, 05:14 AM
I wanted to list my concerns for the Aeronaut.
1. Zippers in stressful areas.
a. with bag on your back, one of the end zippers is on the bottom where the weight falls.
b. carrying by the handle, the bottom of the U of the zipper is down where the weight falls. With a lot of weight, or an overstuffed bag, would these be a problem?
2. No compression straps inside or outside. These would help with above also.
3. The carry handle appears to pull from the top of the bag along the seams. It is unsightly to me and tugs at my engineering background (the handles on each end seem to get it right). Is this the same for anyone else?
This is meant to be more of a question to help allay my concerns and not a criticism.

Darcy
03-05-2007, 01:31 PM
I wanted to list my concerns for the Aeronaut.


Hi TdeF! Welcome to our forums. :)

As the guy who designed the Aeronaut, Tom will have more detailed technical answers for you regarding the load on zippers (because of how the Aeronaut was designed, this isn't really a problem) and the handle (same thing). He'll be posting a reply tomorrow.

There are many different types of maximum carry-on bags out there: backpacks, duffels, shoulder bags, or combinations of all three, bags designed for business people, world travellers, or vacationers, etc.

The Aeronaut is one kind of maximum carry-on bag that fits the needs of many travellers, but isn't designed to be a one-fit solution for every traveller. The Aeronaut has been really popular and Tom may design different types of maximum carry-on bags in the future.

What you may be looking for is a maximum carry-on bag that is designed to function primarily as a backpack. The Aeronaut is designed to be able to be used as a backpack at times, but might not be the right bag for someone who wants to use a maximum carry-on bag primarily as a backpack and wants all of the features a backpack would offer, such as compression straps.

Zephyrnoid
03-05-2007, 05:33 PM
I'll do my best to address your trepidations...

I wanted to list my concerns for the Aeronaut.
1. Zippers in stressful areas.
a. with bag on your back, one of the end zippers is on the bottom where the weight falls.
*Not an issue really
b. carrying by the handle, the bottom of the U of the zipper is down where the weight falls. With a lot of weight, or an overstuffed bag, would these be a problem?
*No it would not. Unless you're lugging bricks or gold bars, the zippers are plenty strong enough not to burst from pressure on them. Most of the pressure is on the fabric anyway and that ballistic fabric gives just a bit and is as strong as any tactical webbing I've ever experienced
2. No compression straps inside or outside. These would help with above also.
* One compression strap would be a a keen idea for an underfilled Aeronaut- good idea. However, I use compression sacks INSIDE the bag, along with Tom Bihn Packing cubes http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/TBP/TB091 and organizer pouches. I fill my Aeronaut to the gills so a compression strap would have no value to me. I also normally lay a folding sheet over the top of the load before zipping up the main compartment. This mitigates any pressure at all on the hatch and in fact, facilitates pressurless zipping and unzipping.
3. The carry handle appears to pull from the top of the bag along the seams. It is unsightly to me and tugs at my engineering background (the handles on each end seem to get it right). Is this the same for anyone else?
*Humn, I noticed that too in underfilled Aeronauts. This is due mostly to the suppleness of the Ballistic cloth- but as long as it doesn't cause undue stress on the seams themselves (and I haven't observed that happening) then it rarely looks bad on my fully packed Aeronaut. Loosely packed Aeronauts may have a different look in that regard. Solution? Carry a more fully packed bag and do bring home more goodies from your travels!
This is meant to be more of a question to help allay my concerns and not a criticism.
*Of all the carry-ons I've ever dealt with, the Aeronaut beats all. Just the use of ballistic Nylon and the outer contours are enough to make it my 'Go To' go bag! Now if I had to choose between Aeronaut and Super Ego- then it might be a tossup. Did I already mention that I'm ADDICTED to compression sacks, packing cubes and organizer pouches?

Zephyrnoid
03-15-2007, 07:34 PM
Ony 53 more posts till 40,000 views! Do we pop a bottle of Champagne or what?!

Darcy
03-16-2007, 02:35 PM
Ony 53 more posts till 40,000 views! Do we pop a bottle of Champagne or what?!

Maybe a tiny travel bottle of Champagne!

TdeF
03-21-2007, 10:21 AM
Darcy, I thought about your suggestion. I would be more interested in a "slightly less than maximum" carry on. Probably without backpack straps. One that could be compressed down tight, if need be, to keep things from moving around, and adjust the size to contents. More like a duffel than a backpack. An outside pocket for tickets, paperback/magazine and water bottle. Able to carry with a handle or shoulder strap, and probably have some other belt (similar to a messenger bag) to stabilize the pack on the back when carrying it for some distance.

eristick
03-21-2007, 01:59 PM
TdeF, with the exception of the fact that it's a backpack, it sounds like the Brain Bag (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/TBP/TB0104) would do you quite well. It's a couple inches shorter than the Aeronaut, has compression straps, outside pockets, and sternum and waist straps to stabalize it while carrying.

Zephyrnoid
03-21-2007, 09:02 PM
An excellent suggestion indeed!
TdeF, with the exception of the fact that it's a backpack, it sounds like the Brain Bag (http://www.tombihn.com/page/001/PROD/TBP/TB0104) would do you quite well. It's a couple inches shorter than the Aeronaut, has compression straps, outside pockets, and sternum and waist straps to stabalize it while carrying.