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Western Flyer & Empire Builder: Do I need both?

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  • MTeric22
    replied
    Originally posted by imperator View Post
    You certainly don't need both. I've been using my WF as a one-bag for 6+(?) years or so, doing daily carry to the office, as well as all my work and personal travel. I've literally not travelled with any other bag (aside from once using my PCBP as a pop-out bag to carry stuff I bought for the fam back from London) since I bought it. I have a "common" loadout in the face pockets, for things like charging cables, headphones, water bottle, and using packing cubes, FS, and pouches in the other pockets makes it relatively easy to transition back and forth between daily carry and multi-day travel. I keep the travel-related accessories in a drawer, and when I pack for a trip, I swap the daily stuff there until I get back.

    If I went to a 2-bag setup, I don't know if the WF would have the same appeal for me. An EB/Synik might be the way I go.
    I was able to get my hands on an EB recently. I think that will be my final choice. For now

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  • imperator
    replied
    You certainly don't need both. I've been using my WF as a one-bag for 6+(?) years or so, doing daily carry to the office, as well as all my work and personal travel. I've literally not travelled with any other bag (aside from once using my PCBP as a pop-out bag to carry stuff I bought for the fam back from London) since I bought it. I have a "common" loadout in the face pockets, for things like charging cables, headphones, water bottle, and using packing cubes, FS, and pouches in the other pockets makes it relatively easy to transition back and forth between daily carry and multi-day travel. I keep the travel-related accessories in a drawer, and when I pack for a trip, I swap the daily stuff there until I get back.

    If I went to a 2-bag setup, I don't know if the WF would have the same appeal for me. An EB/Synik might be the way I go.
    Last edited by imperator; 06-23-2021, 07:47 AM.

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  • MTeric22
    replied
    This helps a lot. Thank you very much.

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  • jobeyonekenobi
    replied
    I own both.

    Aaaaaaand. I must say, I totally split them for use. I use the Empire Builder for work, especially travelling around the UK. I find it’s briefcase packing style to help me with slotting a laptop, a couple of note pads and a book or two in the main compartment, some magazines in the back slot and cables, pens, power packs, keys in the front pocket under the flap.
    I have overnighted with it before and to be fair, if I got rid of what I normally put in the main compartment then I could pack clothes for at least 3 days.
    But.
    But but but but. I’ll say this right now. the Empire Builder is built to survive the apocalypse. It doesn’t feel pain, or remorse or pity. It’s extremely solidly engineered and has quite a high starting weight. And you can fill it to the absolute last millimetre with what turns out to be huge amounts of things.
    It’s quite heavy empty (and that’s taking out the weight of the file dividers that come with it), and when loaded the shoulder strap can really weigh down on which ever side it’s carrying.
    I carry my briefcase style TB bags by their handles. And the Empire Builder will make you realise that there was no reason to pay over the odds for a Kettlebell or set of weights during the great weight shortage of ‘20/‘21.
    The bag can weigh a tonne and there’s no way of spreading that weight effectively other than on one shoulder.
    The Western Flyer. I use this primarily for travel and use its ‘pack flat’ methodology to organise myself. Especially with regards to formal shirts and trousers.
    I do find that the Western Flyer doesn’t have particularly good front zip pouch access once I’ve packed the main body, which is something the Empire Builder really does have.
    The Western Flyer however does have 3 carry modes available. Handle, shoulder strap or (in this case, crucially I feel) hidden shoulder straps.
    My Western Flyer is in 1050d Steel which is extremely sturdy. Since getting my Co Pilot and Synapse 25 in Halcyon, I think I’d absolutely get a Western Flyer in Halcyon if I were to do it again. The Empire builder isn’t available in Halcyon.

    I’ve never used them both at the same time. Honestly.... that’s a fair amount of empty bag weight to carry before packing anything.
    What I have used in tandem is my halcyon Tristar and halcyon Co pilot. The only thing that bugs me about the Co Pilot (and Western Flyer) is how they don’t have double handles, just single. I prefer the sturdiness and hand feel of twin handles like the Empire Builder (or Cadet, or Western Flyer).


    I hope this helps some.
    Last edited by jobeyonekenobi; 06-16-2021, 01:01 AM.

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  • MTeric22
    started a topic Western Flyer & Empire Builder: Do I need both?

    Western Flyer & Empire Builder: Do I need both?

    I have my eyes on both of these bags. I understand that one is more travel and the other is more messenger/briefcase style. But the capacity is kind of my sweet spot for EDC. Is there a reason to own both? Share your thoughts.
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