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Best 'Checkable' TB bag?

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    Best 'Checkable' TB bag?

    So, when I travel for Work, I absolutely love packing in either my WF, or my Pilot, with preference for my Pilot if for no other reason than I like the shock factor of "That's all your luggage?" on my co-worker's faces. Either way though, I'm always doing one-bag, non-checked luggage for work.

    For leisure, when we do fly, it's usually to places like Disney, where we take advantage of their Magical Express service that lets us check our luggage at the airport, never to be seen again until we get into our hotel room at the resort. On our past trips, I've leveraged an old canvas duffle bag I used in high school back in the early 90s. The bag itself has held up fairly well after 25-30 years of use, but most of the zippers on the external pockets have busted, and it's really only the main compartment left that's functional. The rest of the family uses cheap Adidas duffle bags.

    I've always kind of wanted to replace my bag with a duffle style TB bag, and had originally been leaning towards the Aeronauts, because, hey, those are some cool bags. Planning our next Disney trip has me considering once again if I should be replacing my bag. But when I stopped to really consider my use case, I'm starting to think the Aeronauts might be overkill. Those seem to be more bags intended for carry on, and ease of use navigating the airports. In my case, the bag would be checked and shipped right to the hotel room. Don't even have to hit a baggage claim.

    So what are some thoughts on a better choice for a bag that's intended to be checked? There's the obvious choice of the RB, being that it's fairly similar in design to the Aeronauts, but the Yeomans are a little more cost effect, and with their lack of external 'things' (pockets, zippers, that mesh panel) might be a little sturdier to the terror that is baggage handling.

    I travel to Disney several times a year, both to Disneyland and Disney World. Have done the Magical Express many times too. I used to fly with a halcyon A30, but a couple of years go switched over to my original Nordic/solar A45 in order to bring back larger or more oddly shaped souvenirs. However, I have a horror of being asked to check the A45 since it’s such a lovely color that cannot be replaced, so I now fly with a medium Yeoman duffel, which is essentially the same size as the A45. In November, we spent eight days at the Contemporary, in which I had my medium Yeoman duffel and Mr. pammy had his medium Road Duffel, and in a couple of weeks we will be taking the same combination to Disney World where we will be staying at a cabin in Fort Wilderness. Since you do not need the backpack straps of an Aeronaut, my vote would be for a Yeoman duffel. By using packing cubes, it’s easy to organize without the side pockets and it holds a ton. Also, there is less worry about checking it because the Yeomans are made from factory seconds fabric, so it might have a little blemish and if it acquires another when it’s checked it, it’s no biggie.

    Here’s what the TB website says about the fabric imperfections:

    “So it's highly likely that you will find some small cosmetic blemishes somewhere on your Yeoman Duffel, which may include irregular shading, a streak or lighter colored yarn, a small "slub" (a knot or thick spot in the yarn), or some unevenness in the urethane coating. These blemishes or flaws are strictly cosmetic in nature, and will not impact the Yeoman's utility or durability. These peculiarities are inconsistent and will vary from bag to bag, meaning no two will be exactly alike. This also means that while you can choose the color of your Yeoman, we cannot tell you what its unique personality will be: it's 100% potluck (kind of exciting, eh?)."
    Last edited by pammy; 01-16-2019, 04:11 PM.
    Seeking Solar shop bags and Solar packing cube shoulder bag Also coveting an Iberian Synapse or Copilot


      The Yeoman duffel only has one zip, so is very easy to lock up should you choose to.
      Although a simple design, it has a beauty all of its own.
      The medium is an excellent size for carrying loads of clothing. I used it recently for winter camping and packed a full set of waterproofs, full set of fleece backed gear, hats, gloves, full size toiletries, undies, regular trousers, various tops, synthetic jacket and more.

      Sent from my SM-T713 using Tapatalk


        Thanks both, the Yeoman was making more sense to me too for a bag to subject to Baggage Handling. But that RB just looks so much more functional. I'll have to see which way the wind blows in the end. Most likely it'll be 'reuse my existing bag', but I'll see if I can talk myself into making a purchase.

        Originally posted by pammy View Post
        ... and in a couple of weeks we will be taking the same combination to Disney World where we will be staying at a cabin in Fort Wilderness. ...
        We're probably going to just miss you then. Our trip is more mid-Feb. I actually considered the cabins when it was possible we'd have a few extras along as it made the most sense for 6 people, but they never committed to making the trip so we're at POFQ instead.


          Reviving my own old thread, because I never did make a decision. On our last trip, I convinced the missus to drive down, so I used a combination of TB and old bags, because, hey, I could.

          In order to travel with another family, she's convinced me to accelerate our usual 2 year interval and we've got one now planned for this fall. And due to the timing of the other family's involvement, driving down's already been taken off the table. So, it pretty much looks like I'm going to be checking a bag come this fall. (Actually, 4 bags, at $30 a pop ) This brings me back to this thread, what are my options for a bag that will be checked. I've got eyes on:

          1) A45
          2) RB36
          3) Medium YD

          I really want an A45, but it's the most expensive, and therefore, the most painful to lose if something were to happen to it while out of my control. The RB36 is a decent option, smaller size though, and lack of backpack straps for outside of Florida use. Or the YD, cheapest option so least painful to lose, but no built in organization, and again, no backpack straps, though the images in the TB site do show somebody wearing it backpack like with just the handles.

          Or, there's option 4: Continue to use my 25+ year old bag, which, if anybody's wondering, looks like this:

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          It's pretty beat up, and the small side zippers are all broken, but the main compartment still zips closed... So, while it's not a TB bag, it's practically as durable considering it's 25+ years old.
          Last edited by Kaadk; 01-15-2020, 05:31 AM.


            How much organization do you need? Do you intend to unpack, or live out of the bag? Will you have to carry it any distance? So many considerations!

            Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk


              Originally posted by Lia View Post
              How much organization do you need?
              I don't really know. That's part of my problem. I could probably be perfectly fine with a YD, but it just feels odd to me to be looking at a bag that's literally just a bag. A couple of end pockets at least would make it feel more like luggage to me. At the very least, I can be pretty certain that unless it's packed full, with a YD the clothes are going to be all over the place by the time I get there.

              Originally posted by Lia View Post
              Do you intend to unpack, or live out of the bag?
              Probably unpack. That seems to be the way we usually do things for these kind of trips. Get there, unpack clean to the drawers/closets. Then, as the trip progresses, the luggage becomes the laundry hamper that gets the dirty clothes tossed in. In that regard, the YD, being a big cavernous space actually makes sense.

              Originally posted by Lia View Post
              Will you have to carry it any distance?
              Yes and no. For this trip, we're probably talking:

              1) Car to Park and Fly hotel room
              2) Park and Fly hotel room to shuttle
              3) Shuttle into airport to check-in counter.
              Disney magic express takes care of getting it to the room.
              4) Room to disney magic express drop off
              Disney magic express takes care of getting it on the plane
              5) Baggage carousel to Park and Fly shuttle
              6) Park and fly shuttle to Car

              So really, not as bad as other trips could be. But the caveats to this are:

              1) Who knows which trips there will be in the future. Not all of them are going to have Disney Magic Express involved. (Though, admittedly, most will.)
              2) The times that I am carrying it, I'm most likely carrying several pieces. On our last trip down, where we drove, I unloaded the van with my WF on my back, and carrying my old duffle, my Pilot, and 2 of the kid's duffles all at once. The kids each had their overnight bags and their personal bags, wife had her duffle, her overnight bag and her purse. We won't need the overnight bags for this trip, but I still suspect I'll at least be carrying this bag, my Pilot and 2 kid's duffle bags, so having a backpack option (even if it's just backpacking the YD's or RB's carry handles) is a bonus.

              Originally posted by Lia View Post
              So many considerations!
              Hence my dilemma!


                I love my RB36, but it's not a bag I would check.


                  The A45 is a more versatile bag for keeping your hands free, but if losing it is gonna break your heart, it's a risk. Maybe pick one up on eBay so you're less invested if it does disappear?

                  Then again a large YD is so capacious, you could combine a bunch of that other stuff into one big bag.

                  Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk


                    If you're concerned about clothes being all over the place in the YD you can always use packing cubes to organize and prevent clothes slosh. The cubes may get jostled but you'll know where everything is.


                      I took and checked my ballistic A45 to disney last month. Not a mark on it. On the way home I carried it on because we don't like to wait for luggage once we get home (usually super late). Try to pick one up on the second hand market, it's similar in design to what you're used to so packing it should be a no brainer.


                        If you want to get an Aeronaut to use as a one-bag travel bag (how I use it, I'll put an empty Imago or Luminary 12 inside usually), it should hold up just fine being checked. (Mine got softened up a bit going from CDG to Heathrow to IAD but was not harmed. Still salty that British Airways made me check it because we were the lowest class seats.)
                        1050 ballistic is super durable!
                        The Yeoman Duffel's largest size can hold a lot more than the Aeronaut's largest size. That might be easier for your travels, even without dedicated backpack straps, especially since there's only one zipper to lock.


                          Hi @Kaadk,

                          One thing that may factor into your current decision making is that this will be your last opportunity to get a Road Buddy 36 Duffel.
                          Originally posted by MatthewR View Post
                          Deep Dish Edition

                          The Road Buddy 36 and Road Buddy 60 are officially retired designs. What is left on the site is all that will be made.

                          Currently, all Ballistic colors are available in the Road Buddy 36 and all but Coyote and Verde are available in the Road Buddy 60.
                          There are currently still options for the RB36 in Aubergine and Burnt Orange. So, if you like the Duffel style and have been considering this (especially for car trips), you might want to pick one up now. There are probably more options to pick up either the Aeronauts or Yeoman Duffels through second hand markets, as both bags have been made for quite a while, but more limited possibilities if the RB is a style that you like.




                            Have had an Aubergine/Wasabi A45 for 4-5 years and itʻs gone on at least 20-25 trips with us, including international destinations to Europe & China. Itʻs been checked about half the time on a range of airlines: United; Hawaiian; ANA; SAS.

                            Still looks great with all seams, zippers, and grab handles intact, and no tears or other structural damage. So far, any signs of travel can be easily wiped off with a damp cloth.

                            Obviously, nothing is going to prevent outright theft or loss of a checked bag but if you're concerned about durability, TB bags hold up well as checked pieces.
                            Last edited by SC54HI; 01-17-2020, 10:46 AM.


                              Ok, well, my attempts to convince the family to road trip our next trip fell flat on my face. We've now got flights booked. I've warned the wife that her instance on flights might result in my insistence on getting a new bag. So, I'm back to looking at bags again. It might just be the spitefulness of not getting my way, but I'm leaning towards just getting the A45, since I've always wanted one anyways, now I just need to make the decision between 1050 and 525. Actual weight wise it's about the same, so no difference there. Has there been any 'durability' differences, or are they basically just as durable?