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Cordura, the unappreciated stepchild fabric here on the Forum

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    Cordura, the unappreciated stepchild fabric here on the Forum

    Okay, so it isn't as hip and edgy as Dyneema, not as tough and sassy as ballistic, and not as romantically luminous as parapack. It picks up pet hairs and holds them fast as if to say, "These might come in handy someday." Cordura doesn't get much love here. But, on receipt of my brand-spankin'-new Red Blend MCB, I feel compelled to admit it, Cordura was my first Tom Bihn love. Not my first Tom Bihn fabric--that was ballistic nylon in my Aeronaut and Western Flyer. But, though I loved both bags, I didn't fall in love with the fabric itself. It was attractive and sturdy, just doing its job without fanfare. It was in my first café bag, a MCB in steel, that Cordura first turned my head. A fabric with an almost multi-dimensional look, deep and complex. Here's what I wrote then:
    What could be more boring than gray? Not as assertive as black, not as striking as brighter colors, it's the blah middling choice for those who'd rather not choose. At least, that's what I always thought. I never gave steel a second thought as a color.

    But was I ever wrong! I just got the Cafe Bag in steel (with an olive interior) and it is drop-dead gorgeous. It's a chameleon of a color, depending on lighting and what you're wearing it with. Worn over dark teal or hunter green, it takes on some of that tone and looks slightly teal-gray. Worn with burgundy or chocolate brown, I swear it's slate blue-grey. Cloudy daylight tends to bring out the tealish tones, and sunshine the grey-blue tones. Fluorescent versus incandescent also changes the hue. This is not your father's boring gray. It's a sophisticated, mercurial, subtle color. And it's my new favorite, hands down.

    It's true what they say, you never forget your first love. As soon as I set eyes on my new Red Blend Cordura MCB, the old memories came flooding back. Now don't get me wrong. There's still room in my life for Dyneema and ballistic and parapack. I've been around too long and seen too much to confine myself to a single love. But it's true, Cordura is the fabric that is hardest to appreciate in a photo, most variable depending on what it's worn with and what the lighting is like, most multi-dimensional overall. And Red Blend is a most worthy addition to the Cordura collection. It's not a one-dimensional Marilyn-Monroe-lipstick kind of in-your-face red. It's sultry and a little fickle--the kind of red that Greta Garbo would have worn. A red to flatter anyone, a red to reflect any mood. The kind of red that an interior designer of a black-and-white room would reach for when seeking that perfect splash of sophisticated color to finish the room. The kind of red you'd never get tired of. And it could only be realized in Cordura.
    Western Flyer (crimsom) with Absolute strap, Zephyr (black), Medium Cafe Bag (steel/olive), Shop Bags (solar, steel), Large Cafe bag (navy/cayenne), Small café bag (forest), Tristars (steel/solar and indigo/solar),Aeronaut (steel), Side Effects (old skool black cordura, olive parapack), Imagos (steel, cork, wasabi, and aubergine, hemp, steel), Dyneema Western Flyer (Nordic/Steel) and miscellaneous packing cubes, pouches, etc.

    #2
    I so want something in red blend. The Cafe bags are just not my thing even though I really want them to be.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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      #3
      Originally posted by flitcraft View Post

      It's true what they say, you never forget your first love. As soon as I set eyes on my new Red Blend Cordura MCB, the old memories came flooding back. Now don't get me wrong. There's still room in my life for Dyneema and ballistic and parapack. I've been around too long and seen too much to confine myself to a single love. But it's true, Cordura is the fabric that is hardest to appreciate in a photo, most variable depending on what it's worn with and what the lighting is like, most multi-dimensional overall. And Red Blend is a most worthy addition to the Cordura collection. It's not a one-dimensional Marilyn-Monroe-lipstick kind of in-your-face red. It's sultry and a little fickle--the kind of red that Greta Garbo would have worn. A red to flatter anyone, a red to reflect any mood...The kind of red you'd never get tired of. And it could only be realized in Cordura.
      Wow oh wow. This is like reading Raymond Chandler! I think my favorite line is "it's sultry and a little fickle—the kind of red Greta Garbo would have worn." You should be writing novels, @flitcraft!

      ~Nancy

      Comment


        #4
        My thoughts exactly... But you articulated them like poetry!

        Comment


          #5
          Cordura's still my favourite, too. Cordura makes me nostalgic (the first backpack I chose for myself as a kid was an olive cordura Eastpak) and the range and intensity of colours you can dye it to can't be beat. Punch (my favourite!!), Indigo, Azure, Orange 152, Conifer... simply amazing. And it does pastel shades so well, too-- Pink, Grey, Storm... all such beautiful colours. The cat hair on my bags doesn't bother me too much; there isn't too much of it at home and it's my 'cat mum' badge of pride :-)
          Last edited by adalangdon; 01-21-2015, 09:08 PM.

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            #6
            Originally posted by ncb4 View Post
            Wow oh wow. This is like reading Raymond Chandler! I think my favorite line is "it's sultry and a little fickle—the kind of red Greta Garbo would have worn." You should be writing novels, @flitcraft!

            ~Nancy
            I second @ncb4's comment, @flitcraft! Wow!

            Comment


              #7
              I felt the same too. I was skeptical at Cordura since I found TB especially after I traded a French Blue Daylight Backpack. It wasn't anyone fault. I simply have a higher expectation and the French Blue wasn't that perfect bright blue as showed in the TB's Product Page. I am not sure how to point out, the fabric especially Bag has a small hints of shadow hence it kinda bring down the intensity of the overall color.

              The Daylight Backpack was my first Cordura then Wasabi OPs, third was Canary SCB and finally Plum Snake Chamber.. Only till I got hold of my Canary and Plum, my skepticism of Cordura became optimistic as I realized that not all Cordura has to suffer similar ill fate - I just need to choose the right color. Canary isn't the perfect Yellow either but somehow the look somehow blend and look great. Or maybe, I myself don't even understand my unconditional love for Yellow.

              Right now, I am looking forward for my coming Crimson OPs, and next TB Cordura project would be a Grey DLPC.
              Solar/Yellow: A45 Navy, CP Black, SA Black, SCB
              Steel/Grey: UMP Steel 400d, PU Coyote, DLBC, PCSB, TC
              Olive/Green: A30NWS, SCBCanyon, SKIsland
              Mars Red/Red: SENordic, SKCanyon, DLBCCanyon, SCBDawn


              BrainCell Size1 M4800, Cache 13"MBPR E7240

              ~Live Long & Prosper by Vulcan

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by weirdguy View Post
                I felt the same too. I was skeptical at Cordura since I found TB especially after I traded a French Blue Daylight Backpack. It wasn't anyone fault. I simply have a higher expectation and the French Blue wasn't that perfect bright blue as showed in the TB's Product Page. I am not sure how to point out, the fabric especially Bag has a small hints of shadow hence it kinda bring down the intensity of the overall color.

                The Daylight Backpack was my first Cordura then Wasabi OPs, third was Canary SCB and finally Plum Snake Chamber.. Only till I got hold of my Canary and Plum, my skepticism of Cordura became optimistic as I realized that not all Cordura has to suffer similar ill fate - I just need to choose the right color. Canary isn't the perfect Yellow either but somehow the look somehow blend and look great. Or maybe, I myself don't even understand my unconditional love for Yellow.

                Right now, I am looking forward for my coming Crimson OPs, and next TB Cordura project would be a Grey DLPC.
                Color is so individual. Linen (which everyone else loves) leaves me flat -- I even returned a bag. French Blue, however, makes me swoon.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I love the colors that Cordura comes in, though I only have one small item actually made of the stuff. I occasionally wish I had been quick enough to get a Curry SCB, and I don't even particularly want or need an SCB. Nor do I wear yellow ever except as needed for visibility when cycling or running. The Curry just spoke to me, though. I like to think that if I say that enough in the forum, it will come back in some format or another. Preferably something accessory-ish.

                  I've got my eye on a Synapse, though. Despite my love of color, I will probably go for grey, to match my cat (hair-magnet problem solved!). Hopefully I'll be able to get the Iberian interior to satisfy the color-lust.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by binje View Post
                    I love the colors that Cordura comes in, though I only have one small item actually made of the stuff. I occasionally wish I had been quick enough to get a Curry SCB....
                    I'm with you on this. Curry would be a fantastic color for visibility in snow and I wish I had invested in a Curry SCB.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by ncb4 View Post
                      Wow oh wow.
                      Wow indeed. I 'liked' the original post even though I don't much like Cordura!

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Orangeboys View Post
                        Color is so individual. Linen (which everyone else loves) leaves me flat -- I even returned a bag. French Blue, however, makes me swoon.
                        Not trying to push Linen onto you or anything, but sometimes (not always!) these things are bag and/or color combination-dependent. I'm totally out of love with my Linen/Navy MCB and will be ebaying it sooner or later. But I adore my Linen/Steel (cordura) SCB and found it even more swoon-worthy after I did a cute zipper pull with TB coyote cord.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          @adalangdon,
                          Not trying to be evil or anything, but I think I'm not the only one on the forums who would love to see your TB family... no, CLAN photo one day! I'm pretty sure the riot of colors would give even Holi (Hindu festival of colors) a good run for the money ^.^

                          Comment


                            #14
                            @flitcraft - very good writing!

                            I too think 1000d Cordura is a fantastic material that should never be underestimated. There are 2 things I like most about it:

                            1) Superior abrasion resistance (even more than Ballistic Nylon) - no matter what I do to my all Cordura Brain Bag, it does not show any scratches or damage. This is due to Cordura's rough fibers (from a microscopic point of view) - this stuff is used for military grade backpacks. For comparison, Ballistic Nylon is very shiny and will show damage more. If you want a bag that you do not have to worry about banging or scraping against things, Cordura bags are for you. It is great for outdoor nature hikes or carrying construction tools, wood, bricks, etc.

                            2) The rougher texture of the fiber gives it a more relaxed, natural look IMHO - warmer if you will. I would use a cordura bag as a pillow more than a ballistic nylon or dyneema one.

                            I say all this despite that fact that 1050d HT Ballistic Nylon is my favorite material.

                            So, I would say I prefer Cordura bags for when I want to be more casual or if I am going to take my bag into rough environments.

                            The only issue is with pet hair and I just make sure I keep my cordura bags above the floor or on a hook.

                            A big Whoo Hooo for 1000d Cordura!

                            Cheers!
                            Last edited by tpnl; 01-22-2015, 09:35 PM.
                            TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              i, er, really like cafe bags?

                              Originally posted by icebeng View Post
                              @adalangdon,
                              Not trying to be evil or anything, but I think I'm not the only one on the forums who would love to see your TB family... no, CLAN photo one day! I'm pretty sure the riot of colors would give even Holi (Hindu festival of colors) a good run for the money ^.^
                              Hm. Rest of the clan's in hiding, but the cafe bags are OK with saying hi after I convinced them (and myself!). My Steel/Deep Blue LCB is on MC-- it has been sent to the mothership for repairs. Navy/UV SCB says 'hello, don't forget me just because I'm in use'.

                              (There's more than what you see here, but I won't list the colours and/or lay them out nicely because that will force me to COUNT them... forgive me >_<;; )

                              Click image for larger version

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                              Last edited by adalangdon; 01-23-2015, 09:16 PM.

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