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  • backpack
    replied
    Originally posted by roomy View Post
    Unfortunately the trains in North America are so bad that nobody here thinks of trains, period
    I beg to differ.
    On my last trip, I did manage to get on one short train ride out of the many I planned to take. Very enjoyable.
    West coast Amtrak overnight best accommodations were full, so I choose to fly.

    Autumn travel by train must be lovely anywhere in the U.S and Canada.
    Spring too provided one has no allergy.

    This summer, several Tom Bihn forum members have taken Amtrak trains.

    http://forums.tombihn.com/customer-p...-day-trip.html

    http://forums.tombihn.com/bag-review...rain-trip.html
    Last edited by backpack; 08-07-2011, 08:04 PM.

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  • roomy
    replied
    Originally posted by backlasher View Post
    Something else that no one mentioned, or I missed it, are the stairs getting on and off the train. A tri Star or WF is much easier to navigate with than ANY rolling bag.
    Unfortunately the trains in North America are so bad that nobody here thinks of trains, period

    Leave a comment:


  • backlasher
    replied
    Something else that no one mentioned, or I missed it, are the stairs getting on and off the train. A tri Star or WF is much easier to navigate with than ANY rolling bag.

    Leave a comment:


  • dorayme
    replied
    Yes, this.

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  • backpack
    replied
    The Brain Bag with Packing Cubes is perfect for U.S domestic travel (planes=Southwest, trains, boats and cars). I assume it is also the case for travel within continental Europe/Asia, Australia, New Zealand, the UK, Japan, Africa, Canada and South America.

    The problem are those pesky watery areas between continents when one has to deal with airlines and their even peskier carry on weight rules.

    Now, it is not about weight and balance because the bag is going to be on the plane anyway so it makes no difference if it is within reach or crushed under the weight of enormous wheelies, in cargo.

    Most transcontinental airlines have 2 or 3 classes on board their aircrafts, on some airlines, the higher two classes pay more and get to keep 2 carry-ons instead of one.

    It seems to be the job of some people to show cargo...hem coach passengers that they are a weighty inconvenience for this first class aircraft and remove as much comfort as possible.


    The Brain Bag fits perfectly under a domestic airline middle and window seat, but it might not on transcontinental aircrafts, even the biggest ones. The reason: the entertainment boxes placed under the seats which only allow a thin, square bag just like the Western Flyer and Tristar.

    If you are forced to check your bag on the transcontinental flights, there will be nothing to protect the Brain Bag straps against abuse or destruction.
    By contrast, on the Western Flyer and Tristar, the straps can quickly be stowed, your essentials (packed in the Packing Cube Shoulder Bag,, a Kit or a Medium Pouch) removed in seconds.

    If you are lucky enough to keep your Western Flyer or Tristar with you, just slide it under your seat, fasten your seatbelt and you are on your way to Italian Adventures!
    Last edited by backpack; 08-04-2011, 07:22 AM.

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  • gmanedit
    replied
    The Brain Bag is only half a pound heavier than the Western Flyer. (I take it, from your initial post, that you are a backpack person. Me too.) In my experience, generally multipurpose items are not quite as functional in each use as something designed to do one thing.

    Consider the Brain Bag with packing cubes. The Brain Bag is pretty square, and the Aeronaut Large Packing Cube fits in each compartment. (A Packing Cube Shoulder Bag would probably come in handy, too, for wandering around.) When you arrive at each destination, you just have to slide out the packing cubes. And when you get home, you've got a fabulous backpack!

    Leave a comment:


  • jeffmac
    replied
    A good rule of thumb is to keep you carry on to about ten percent of your body weight. I did 8 days in Germany with my Tristar (which I adore) but with electronics I was up to almost 21 pounds. The WF is a bit smaller so it might help you keep your packing discipline a bit better if that is a challenge for you but I love the additional organization of the Tristar.

    I reviewed it on my blog if you are interested.

    Leave a comment:


  • wbljean
    replied
    Thanks, it's really helpful to see a photo like this!

    Leave a comment:


  • Cymberleah
    replied
    I have a Tri-Star, and it's been much, much better for my packing needs than my previous incarnation of two backpacks. I packed for a four day trip to Portland last weekend, and after filling one side of the bag with clothes (including a spare bra and pair of jeans, just in case), toiletries, and four books and some tea in the outside zipper pouches I still had two sections of the bag empty. As I was driving and didn't need to take weight into account they didn't stay empty for long, and to be sure the blanket I packed was honestly useful.

    You mention that you are a 55 year old woman; for that reason I'd suggest the WF over the Tri-Star. I don't know how fit you are, but if you think you can make it through the trip with the lighter bag, that would be what I would go with. It's been said before on many travel sites that no one says at the end of the trip that they wish they had packed heavier.

    Also, as these bags are intended to be travel bags, getting into your stuff will be easier than if you used one of the backpacks.

    Leave a comment:


  • Darcy
    replied
    Originally posted by roomy View Post
    View the following pictures to see how a Tristar can be used for travel to Italy She shows exactly what she packed: Me with my Tri-Star | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
    These are great photos -- I can't believe I missed them before. Thanks, roomy.

    Leave a comment:


  • roomy
    replied
    Originally posted by wbljean View Post
    Are these bags for me?
    View the following pictures to see how a Tristar can be used for travel to Italy She shows exactly what she packed: Me with my Tri-Star | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

    Leave a comment:


  • backpack
    replied
    A sturdy carry on with backpack straps which can be hidden away securely, is a must.
    One never knows if, due to lack of space in the overhead bin, need to bring more revenue or simple whim, a gate agent will make any passenger check their carry on.

    The weight of the Western Flyer is not a big deal, especially if somebody chooses to bring a DSLR camera, those are heavy and bulky and, in my opinion, unnecessary.
    I have a light weight setup for still and video images which fits without any problem inside a Medium Padded Pouch.
    This set up can be made even more lightweight using the latest generations of point and shot cameras and mini cams.
    Maverick takes great pictures and videos with his small Leica Deluxe.

    The most important is to choose lightweight fabric garments and accessories which means microfiber and light cotton separates instead of denim and bulky khakis.

    A packable wind breaker, 1 or 2 cardigans, 2 to 4 long sleeve shirts and the same number of pants/skirts are essential for all seasons.

    In summer, tees in colors coordinating with the long sleeve shirts and the cardigans enable the cooling and modest open shirt over tee look and the elegant twin set a la Grace Kelly.

    In Spring and Fall the same setup can be used with slightly heavier cardigans, to compensate, tees can be removed from the lineup, it is too cold for only two small layers in much of Europe.

    A lightweight dressy scarf and a warmer wrap are a must.

    Both can be bought in the destination country.

    Link to major department stores in Rome.
    Rome Department Stores, Grandi Magazzini Roma, In Rome Now Complete City Guide Italy Shopping Restaurants Accommodations Arts Culture Weather Services


    Online maps are your handy guides to find dining, shops and laundromats (you have the most chance to find those in proximity to a university)
    Last edited by backpack; 08-03-2011, 08:54 PM.

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  • wbljean
    replied
    Thanks for all answers, especially this one. I didn't understand the drawbacks of the traditional 'backpack' style.

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  • Lani
    replied
    It's almost impossible to do with any of the Tom Bihn bags,* unfortunately, but I have a detailed write-up on how both my husband and I packed for a two-week European trip while still meeting Virgin Airways' strict 13-pound carry-on rule: The Travelite® FAQ » Blog Archive » The Ultra-minimalist packing list: How I packed for Europe

    [*The big problem is that a lot of sturdy carry-on bags weigh a lot to start with. When every ounce counts, having a bag that weighs 2 pounds is a big deal.]

    Leave a comment:


  • thisisme
    replied
    Hi -
    I'm not sure how familiar you are with one-bagging, but the reason the tristar and western flyer are preferred over traditional backpacks is because:

    1. they unzip on all three sides. That means they open flat, and are therefore easier to pack and unpack. (ie:clothes fold up nicer and there's less digging to get stuff out.)

    2. they are rectangles, so you can fit more stuff into them than a more rounded backpack that has the same footprint. (The backpack loses space with its domed shape.)

    I hope this helps! (Maybe you already knew this :-))

    I learned all this at the One Bag site (I would recommend googling it, if you haven't already -- it's a funny site!)

    Leave a comment:

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