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Excess strap management

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    Excess strap management

    I see this has come up a couple of times but I can't see a solution... What do you suggest for keeping excess strap length from flapping around? I have the Synapse and Aeronaut and would love to be able to keep the straps neat but still be able to adjust them easily. Any ideas?

    Get some small rubber o-rings and bundle them inside them. Or use a TB Strapeez to tie them back without cutting. Or you can go the hard-core route and simply trim them to length with a hot knife


      That is what I do; but I just don't understand why a retainer can't be sewn into the strap---the way many laptop makers do --into which you can easily tuck your strap? these are just simple bands that are sewn on to the strap---and make life easy. I have never gotten an answer either--given that the backpacks are made with so much attention to detail, I don't get some of the details!


        Thanks for the ideas, Michael. I tend to agree with Shiva. it's possible to find this feature already built in to some bags... much more elegant and in keeping with Tom's very high standards. Hopefully there will be a fix


          I have a couple of Camelbak bags with a great solution to this... A simple piece of double-sided Velcro sewn to the end of each strap. You just roll the strap up to the length you want then secure it with the Velcro. Very cool & simple.
          Black/Iberian Aeronaut, Steel/Wasabi Synapse25, Black/UV Synapse19, Black/Steel Western Flyer, Black Checkpoint Flyer, Steel/Wasabi Side Effect, Packing Cube Shoulder Bag, Travel Tray, numerous packing cubes, organizer pouches


            I assume you are all talking about the backpacks straps.

            Those straps are designed to fit the widest range of people and by that I mean size wise.

            Below is a link to a page showing pictures of Brain Bags owners.

            Customer Pictures From Around the World of bags made by: TOM BIHN

            To me, the most striking picture is the one of Toby Harnden with his Brain Bag. I have the exact same bag but it covers most of my back, my other Tom Bihn backpack is a Packing Cube Backpack for the Aeronaut which fits me the same way the Brain Bag fits Toby Harnden.

            I strongly suspect that the Synapse will fit me in between the Packing Cube Backpack and the Brain Bag.
            I am deducing that from seeing Maverick and other people carrying the Synapse.

            In any of those pictures, excess fabric from the straps doesn't seem to be a problem.

            As the owner of 3 Brain Bags and a Packing Cube Backpack, I love excess fabric from the straps because it helps me grab the strap that I have to fit on my second shoulder.

            Due to my personal measurements, the excess fabric on the strap is not long enough as to be in the way.

            I don't think a sewn fabric strap retainer is necessary, I want to be able to slide the strap all the way down or all the way up in case I want to secure a Brain Bag to something.
            A fabric strap retainer would have to be roughly in the middle of the strap to make it worthwhile. It would make it impossible to slide the strap all the way down, up or right where it best fits me.

            That "best fit" strap length also changes with the seasons. I need more length in winter and less in summer, with the weather we had been having it is probably more accurate to say the length of my Brain Bag straps depends on the bulk of my wardrobe.

            I bought a set of black Strapeez and find them perfect for securing and customizing all kind of things.
            Last edited by backpack; 04-27-2011, 09:02 PM.


              Hi backpack,
              I am looking for something that allows for easy adjustment, as we are all different shapes and sizes, as you say. I'm thinking of something sewn in during manufacture, e.g.

              You make a good point about this possibly limiting your strap lengthening options, but I think most people would find it very useful. Provided it can slide up and down the strap, it shouldn't be a problem.


                I use a black hair band on my black belt to control the excess flap. It should work for this too.


                  I've been wondering about what to do with my excess synapse straps, and I figure I may have some similar issues with my Imago that is arriving today. I think I will be knittingbombing them with little retainer tubes to control the extra straps.
                  I really, really like TB Bags!


                    I have a similar situation with a Side Effect, which I wear as a belt. (Hip-pack) I would like to know what others do with this scenario.

                    I also have a Super Ego with standard shoulder strap, wondering what folks do with the stap when either carrying by the poron-filled handle or setting it down on the floor.

                    Silly questions, I know, but still very real situations that I run into quite often.
                    Owner of: Brain Bag backpack (Black), Field Journal Notebook (Blue), Snake Charmer (Small, Orange), Super Ego briefcase (Black / Indigo / Steel) with Reflective Strip, Brain Cell (Steel), Horizontal Freudian Slip, various Organizer Pouches and Key Straps, and a Side Effect (Black / Wassabi) worn as a belt-style hip-pack.


                      Last month my slim husband and myself took a trip with our Brain Bags.

                      He carried the Brain Bag mainly with one strap which he has set up very short.

                      I, in contrast, had to lengthen the straps because I was wearing multiple layers of clothing to accommodate variations in temperature inside the airports, the plane and outside the very cold departure airport and unusually chilly destination.

                      A sewn in sleeve will reduce the ability to lengthen the strap up to the width of the sleeve.

                      The alternative would be a Velcro sleeve and the Strapeez in black can do that just fine in an elegant way.

                      I am sure Dorayme solution is going to be even cuter.

                      The bottom line is, as a person of height and width, I don't want my future Tom Bihn backpacks and messenger bags equipped with a sewn in add on that will shorten the length of my straps permanently.

                      I use my Cafe Bags straps at maximum length.

                      My Brain Bags straps are set up at medium to high length so that the left over strap below the securing buckle is minimal and, in my case, necessary to manage easy and fast removal of my Brain Bags.

                      The Backpack Packing Cube , which I use a lot as an everyday backpack, has somewhat longer leftover straps, especially when it is worn over light/summer clothing.

                      I suspect that the Synapse strap length will be used somewhere in the middle because it has the padding of the Brain Bag and seems to be close to the Backpack Packing Cube in size.

                      I would love to use the Brain Bag or the Synapse or both on top of my bike rack.

                      Using the strap to set up a position on the rack before placing bungee cords to secure it/them.


                        Originally posted by backpack View Post
                        A sewn in sleeve will reduce the ability to lengthen the strap up to the width of the sleeve.... I don't want my future Tom Bihn backpacks and messenger bags equipped with a sewn in add on that will shorten the length of my straps permanently.
                        It's a good point, backpack, but I can imagine an easy solution during the build process. Have the strap slightly longer to accommodate the size of the strap retainer, so that adjustability remains the same. E.g. if the retainer is 1" wide, the strap could be made 1" longer than it currently is.

                        Long straps that flap in the wind, get caught in doors, drag on the ground and get dirty, etc. means frustration for lots of people. Hair clips, velcro straps, severing with hot knives, duct tape... yuck. It doesn't need to be this way, especially not on a beautifully-made, high-end bag that you paid good money for.

                        What I love about Tom's bags is his attention to detail and clever management of the day-to-day frustrations of hauling your gear. Please help, Tom!


                          One solution using official TB parts is shown in this video: https://vimeo.com/160672776


                            I use Web Dominators. They’re small plastic clips with a piece of shock cord attached. They work beautifully on my Synapse 19. Here’s a description: Tame dangling straps with Web Dominator - Packing Light Travel