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accessories for smart alec or new synapse

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    accessories for smart alec or new synapse

    So, I'm thinking about buying a new backpack for everyday use/day trips/light traveling. I've narrowed down my options to either the Smart Alec or the new (larger) Synapse that is coming out.

    Given that we don't know too much about the new bag, my main question right now is not about the bags themselves, but rather about the accessories. What accessories do you guys think would be best?

    This is my tentative list:
    1. Utility strap (x2?) - I have a leatherman and maybe a flashlight for this
    2. Travel tray - I just want this, it doesn't necessarily sync with the bags


    Here are some things I'm not sure about:
    1. Packing cubes/organizer pouches...I already have a set of Eagle Creek packing cubes, but are there any that you guys think just fit the bags particularly well?
    2. Handle loop - for any cubes/pouches
    3. Key straps - for using pouches while leaving them attached? And I guess for keys?
    4. Stuff sacks - what's the difference between the travel ones and the yarn ones? They seem to look pretty similar...
    5. Freudian slip - I'm less sure about this one...having trouble imagining what it is used for.
    6. Any other ideas?


    I would appreciate any input or advice - thanks!

    #2
    My EDC has -
    mini padded OP - earbuds + USB charge cable for iphone
    small padded OP - iphone (for those bags without a nice iphone pocket)
    mini clear front O/Wallet - headache pills, eyedrops (single use), bandaids, etc
    small dyneema OP - tissues, wipes -
    the 2012 xmas little pouchy thing - loose change

    This load gets moved between bags.

    My computer carry (Ego) has .. umm... lessee .. about another 8 OPs ..

    so I'd say get as many as you can afford :-) mini and small are very useful -

    I have a shoulder bag packing cube that gets heavy use as well - and you'll be surprised how often you find yourself stuffing that travel tray into a gap somewhere.
    List under construction ....

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      #3
      I have a Smart Alec. I use a Snake Charmer (over-the-ear headphones, plus various cables), Freudian Slip, Dyneema Organizer Cube, 3D Clear Organizer Cube, and a bunch of key straps. The various cubes get tethered in. The Snake Charmer's probably my least favorite - it's very effective, but I get the sense I could find somewhat smaller perhaps. But it's Wasabi ...

      I use the Freudian Slip quite a bit for EDC. I'm able to store extra pens and such, tech widgets and such on one side, and papers and folders in the other. My iPad also slides into one of the Slip's back pockets. I find it adds some structure to the bag as well.

      I also have a Clear Organizer Wallet and a Pocket Pouch - I keep both tethered to an O ring in the admin pocket of the Smart Alec.

      Lastly, I have the Upper and Lower Modular Pockets for the Smart Alec. The Upper Pocket has proven very useful, for a variety of stuff I want to access quickly (my FAK in the Clear Pouch, tethered), some tools, notebook, etc.). I just started using the Lower Pouch.
      Last edited by BrianI; 03-11-2013, 08:39 PM.

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        #4
        I find that the Dyneema 3D organizer cubes are just about the perfect size for any bag - I have one I use as a first aid kit and will likely order a few more. Hopefully the new Side Effect comes in Dyneema too because that would be a perfect fit as well.
        --------------------------------

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          #5
          Originally posted by BrianI View Post
          my FAK in the Clear Pouch, tethered)
          Brian... please explain FAK..



          Someone please help me!
          I have BAS (Bihn Acquisition Syndrome)!!

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            #6
            FAK = first aid kit
            --------------------------------

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              #7
              Originally posted by bltkmt View Post
              FAK = first aid kit
              Yep - so sorry. Didn't even realize I was speaking in acronym.

              I got the 3D Clear for a 3-1-1 bag for air travel, but it's working really well as a small personal first aid kit of me. General aches, pains, and life's bruises sort of stuff.

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                #8
                I just bought a Smart Alec, which I really like so far. Synapse was too small and separated for my EDC. Larger Synapse will likely be too big for my needs.

                I purchased the upper modular pocket, a dyneema organizer, and a few more small/mini organizer pouches. I already had several with key straps, so I didn't get too much. I've found the combination of the SA's open main pocket, side pockets, and these organizers to be a versatile combination. I store pretty much all of my cables in the dyneema organizer and put it in the bottom inside pocket in the main compartment. I have a vertical brain cell in there too, and I still have room for my 1" Levenger folio and a few books if needed, plus whatever I can fit on top of them.

                I will use the upper modular pocket on a trip in April, but it appears to be a good addition. The lower modular pocket didn't make sense for me, plus I think it detracts from the bag's aesthetics.

                I'm thinking of doing a video review of my EDC with the SA. There are a few good articles with photos of the new design, but not really any videos.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by rfordut View Post
                  I'm thinking of doing a video review of my EDC with the SA. There are a few good articles with photos of the new design, but not really any videos.
                  That'd be awesome -- can't wait to see your video.
                  Have a question? @Darcy (to make sure I see it)

                  Current carry: testing new potential materials in the form of Original Large Shop Bags.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Yes, rfordut, a video review of your SA would be awesome! I love to see how other folks organize their SAs, as I'm trying to assess the best way to organize mine.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Hey, thanks for all the advice everyone. Unfortunately, all the advice is just leading to more questions....^^;

                      I realized that I probably should have provided a little bit more info on what I carry each day and what I might use it for while traveling. Here's a list of my EDC stuff:
                      • iPad
                      • Galaxy S II
                      • earbuds
                      • leatherman
                      • flashlight
                      • compass
                      • keys
                      • wallet
                      • Klean Kanteen 27 oz
                      • rain jacket/fleece depending on the day
                      • eyedrops


                      Based on that, it seems that I might need 2 or 3 small organizer pouches...I'm leaning towards the mesh/clear ones, but not sure yet. Still considering the cubes...I'm a bit confused, though. Could someone explain how the 3D cubes are different than the normal cubes? Are they just smaller? What makes them "3D"?

                      Brianl, you mentioned that you use the Freudian Slip for your iPad...how loose are those back pockets? They looked quite tight to me in the pictures, so I had originally thought I would only be able to put loose leaf paper in there.

                      Also, several of you mentioned that you have Smart Alecs - I have a couple questions for all of you =). First, when you clip all these different cubes/pouches into the main compartment, how do you keep them all from bunching up at the same place or the straps from tangling? I guess you could use longer key straps or key straps of different lengths...?

                      Second, how much does the upper modular pocket overlap with the pocket that is on the top/inside of the Smart Alec? It seems that those two pockets would tend to both hold things that you want quick access to.

                      Thanks again!

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by henryjin View Post
                        Also, several of you mentioned that you have Smart Alecs - I have a couple questions for all of you =). First, when you clip all these different cubes/pouches into the main compartment, how do you keep them all from bunching up at the same place or the straps from tangling? I guess you could use longer key straps or key straps of different lengths...?

                        Thanks again!
                        Different color key straps! I know my keys are on the indigo one, wallet on the cayenne one, hand sanitizer on the storm one, pocket pouch on black one, etc. At least, this is what works for me. My keys are on a longer one so that I only unhook them to drive. I don't notice they get tangled and I've got 5 clipped in my MCB.

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by henryjin View Post
                          Brianl, you mentioned that you use the Freudian Slip for your iPad...how loose are those back pockets? They looked quite tight to me in the pictures, so I had originally thought I would only be able to put loose leaf paper in there.
                          Loose enough to take a sheaf of papers, a magazine or similar, or an iPad. Here's some pics from a few moments ago:
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                          Originally posted by henryjin View Post
                          Second, how much does the upper modular pocket overlap with the pocket that is on the top/inside of the Smart Alec? It seems that those two pockets would tend to both hold things that you want quick access to.
                          There's some overlap - part of it is figuring out what works best for oneself in any given EDC / travel / situation. For me, the upper modular pocket provides quick access to items I want, well, quick access to without opening the rest of the bag. I also find the upper module pocket to have a little more utility.
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                            #14
                            Some additional pics of inner vs upper module pockets:
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                              #15
                              @Brianl Thanks for the pictures. I'm also curious about your impressions of the lower modular pocket for the Smart Alec. I have the upper modular pocket (in Aubergine). I haven't decided on whether the lower modular pocket makes sense for me, both because if size (I don't usually carry that much, and I'm under 5'4" tall), and because the default Smart Alec design, with or without the upper modular pocket, is nicely sized to fit under Airplane seats (without large A/V boxes) and other similar travel stowage situations, but this would not be true with the lower modular pocket attached. On the other hand, I can see that if you need the extra storage while walking around with the backpack, the easy access of the lower modular pocket could be a plus.

                              I'm really still more used to using the Synapse for EDC purposes. thanks for any insights you can provide

                              moriond

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