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Looking for a Messenger Style Bag

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    Looking for a Messenger Style Bag

    So, I'm in the market for a shoulder bag. The two I am having a hard time deciding between are the Co-Pilot and the Maker's Bag. Can some of you weigh in and give me your thoughts on these?

    Thank you in advance.

    Welcome to the Forums sungolds !

    Would you be able to share the types of things you want to be carrying and how/when you want to use the bag? They're very different in how they're organized
    I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...


      Thanks for the welcome I mostly want to carry it as an everyday bag. I'd like some organization - so I can separate bits like my phone from my keys, maybe sunglasses, and odds and ends. Maybe at times, I might include my mirrorless camera or other little media things like that. But I don't plan on carrying around my laptop (13 or 14"). It'd be nice every once in awhile, but not necessary. If there are other shoulder bags that I'm not aware of outside of these two, I'm definitely open to suggestions.


        I don’t have a Copilot, but have a Pilot, and a Maker’s Bag. Both are great messenger style bags. But, for me, serve quite different purposes.

        The Pilot/Copilot is fully zip closed, which I prefer for travelling in busy places. The bag is also more compartment organised, and I really only use it when carrying a laptop.

        The Maker’s Bag is my preference generally as a more casual bag. It has limited organisation, but can be well organised with various pouches or other accessories, including perhaps a Freudian Slip which also can give the bag more rigidity if preferred.


          I have both the Co-Pilot and the Maker's Bag. The CP is boxy-looks like a mini-briefcase to me. I'll carry it to work, but it's too luggage looking to carry it around like a PLO (purse like object) to me. It has good separation to store things in an organized way. The Maker's Bag is larger with some built in pockets for organization. I also use it for a work carry (actually reach for my retired Imagos more, but they are at least similar type messenger bags). You might want to take a look at the Icon. I carry that for both work and around town for appointments or errands. Separate compartments, but spacious enough for a water bottle (I have a Contigo 16oz). It's a nice in between size bag for when you want more than a minimalist carry (Side Effect or Every Day Cubelet for me), but don't want to carry a bigger bag like the Maker's or a tote like the Swift/Pop-Tote.


            Another perspective...
            My brain thinks in classifications... for bags that are basically shoulder / cross body and/or top handle:

            Side Effect 1.5L - horizontal

            Everyday Cubelet 1.7L - vertical; less organization than SE

            Side Kick 3.0L - horizontal; similar organization to SE

            Packing Cube Shoulder Bag 4.5L - horizontal; packing cube and/or bag; only organization is O rings and 2D exterior pocket

            Small Cafe Bag 6.0L - vertical; top flap/no top zip

            Icon 7.5L - vertical

            Medium Cafe Bag 8.0L - vertical; top flap/no top zip

            Daylight Briefcase 8.0L - horizontal; may look more business than casual

            Copilot - horizontal; dedicated water bottle pocket; may look more business than casual

            Maker's Bag 12.5L - more horizontal than Cafe bags; top flap/no top zip

            Pilot 13.0L - horizontal; dedicated water bottle pocket; may look more business than casual

            So you might want to think about the horizontal vs vertical orientation, how much built in organization you want, if you want to carry a beverage (size), and if having a zip vs top flap is critical...along with how it looks.

            I have all the listed bags above, except for the Maker's which (along with the LCB) I recently test packed and determined were too large for me; if I'm going to carry that much stuff around, it's going into a backpack. I like them for different uses. Notably however, I usually don't carry any bag if I'm just out & about...my keys & Nik's wallet are in my pockets; phone in pocket or belt holster.
            Work stuff for me goes to backpacks, so cross body/shoulder is always more of an exception for my uses...generally for walking around cities or events vs EDC.

            The SE was my first TB bag but I've since mostly migrated to the SK because I can fit a 16oz Nalgene water bottle in it more easily. I mostly have halcyon bags, but my SK in Cloud/Viridian is a very attractive combo and a good museum bag - I've never been asked to check it into a locker.

            I use the ECs as bag-in-bag organizers most of the time, including as a traveling office, but I also use it as a small cross body and now prefer it to the SK. Most of mine are the 210 ballistic.

            I usually use the DLBC, CP, & Pilot for business travel, especially if I also plan on some personal vacation/wandering where I leave the work stuff in the hotel room and use the bag for wandering around. In particular, I've carried a DLBC for all day rambles around Portland, OR and other cities. All 3 are halcyon because I like the look, the lightweight, and the flexibility.

            The SCB & MCB are very new to me (recent Cordura offerings) and haven't seen much use yet; I generally prefer the security of zipped compartments vs the open top, but in particular I'm trying them out to hold sketching stuff which by it's nature is either not going to fall out (sketchbook) and/or is always going to be sub-contained (ie, all the pencils are in a zip pouch).

            My Icon is neat, but haven't used it much yet, just lack of opportunity so far.

            It took me a long time to get into the PCSB but now I have several. Especially during the pandemic I've had need of a bag where I can dump a variety of stuff and just go, without needing any particular organization. The new blue cerylon PCSB is what I've been using for that and I quite like it.

            ETA, there were other messenger style shoulder bags from TB that are discontinued, but if you find one in the secondary market, there's folks here who could tell you about them
            Last edited by G42; 10-03-2021, 09:17 AM.
            I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...


              Thanks for all the insight, everyone. G42 - and thanks for that quasi taxonomy of TB bags, ha. I think in classifications too. Side effect of studying science in school. As for the bag, I definitely prefer a horizontal format, rather than vertical. Taking into account everyone's input, I think the Maker's wins this one


                Let us know what colour combo and what you think, once you get one
                I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...