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  1. #1
    Registered User
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    Jul 2016
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    Confused about colors (Empire Builder)

    I have a Ristretto and a Tri-Star. Looking to add a bag for my ginormous Dell laptop to the stable. I'm looking at the EB, but the 2 color choices(!) baffle me.

    The photo for Black/Steel shows a wholly black bag - is steel the color of the interior?

    The photo for the Steel/Steel color shows a... BLACK bag, with a grey flap. I presume the grey is what is being called "steel"? Is the flap the only place that color is represented, or is the whole bag Steel, as the label "Steel/Steel" would seem to suggest? What's the color of the interior on that one?

    Why are the color options so limited on the EB, anyway? All my other bags have bright colors inside so you can see the contents. It's kinda of a signature thing with TB bags, I thought. The EB seems black inside based on the photos currently on the site. But it's hard to tell. The photos on the site for the EB are quite sparse.

    Much mahalos
    Beau

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    Welcome to the forums @bmonday

    The color designation can be a bit confusing. There seems to be 2 ways the colors are shown.

    e.g. Color1 / Color2

    Where the bag exterior is offered only in one color, Color1 is the outside exterior color (e.g. Ristretto, Tri-Star, Aeronaut, Synapse).
    Where the bag exterior is offered in two tone colors, Color1 is the exterior color you can change. (e.g. Empire Builder, Smart Alec, Brain Bag)

    Color2 is always the interior color

    So, for the Empire Builder, the Color1 is the flap color; for the Smart Alec, it is the middle material color; for the Brain Bag, it is the front area material color. The current color options for the Empire Builder are for a Black flap (ie. an all black exterior bag) or a Steel flap.

    To, make things more fun, there are many shades of "grey" color and they are named differently depending on the material it is used on.

    Steel is the color name given to the Ballistic Nylon material version of Grey and is the only version of grey to be offered in that material (that I can recall) - where as Halcyon/Dyneema material has Northwest Sky and Steel and Cordura material has Grey, Steel depending on whether interior or exterior fabric, etc.

    You are correct that the Empire Builder was offered in more exterior flap colors (I remember a Navy and a Crimson/Cardinal Red). I even saw a Plum or Grape Zephyr (smaller Empire Builder). Also, the interiors options used to include Blue (not sure of the TB name) or Wasabi or Crimson/Cardinal Red in addition to the current Steel.
    However, currently, I believe TB is sticking to the conservative colors - probably because that is what most professionals go for and therefore sells the most.

    I personally have a Steel flap Empire Builder with Steel Cordura interior and, while I am a Black Bag type of person, I find the Steel very deep and rich in the Ballistic Nylon. It also looks brighter in the light but blends well with the black when not in the light (ie, more charcoal grey).

    Hope this helps (probably TMI though )
    Cheers!
    Last edited by tpnl; 07-17-2016 at 12:10 PM.
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  3. #3
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    Very helpful - Thanks! I went ahead and ordered the steel/steel

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