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  1. #1
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    Curiosity about which bags we choose to trade or resell

    Iíve been an avid one-bag traveler for years but have only recently become part of the Bihn-wagon as I work to trim my travel packs down and down. One trip with my Synapse 25 was enough to quash any last reservations I had about 25L travel. So now I am looking at my older bags and considering which pieces of our family luggage it is time to part with.

    Iíd love to hear from the collective about what makes you keep a bag or part with it. I recently plied a favorite bag reviewer with this question too since he is a great proponent of #onebagtravel but obviously has MANY MANY bags. So what does he DO with them all? Which also has me wondering... why do we see particular styles of bag pop up for trade and resale over and over?

    What do you do? Do you keep multiple bags for different travel and EDC purposes? I feel like Iíve been chasing the #onebagtorulethemall my whole life. But have found itís more like one bag to rule each activity.

  2. #2
    Forum Member nimikor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SarahJaneMakes View Post
    ...have found itís more like one bag to rule each activity.
    Over the years Iíve settled on two packing/travel strategies and have 3 bags for each (not too minimal but they bring me joy!)

    1- Business - DLBC, Pilot, Western Flyer
    2- Recreational - DLBP, S19, Smart Alec

    Purpose of EDC/trip, length, and required electronics/clothing determine which bag to take. Most in Halcyon and never larger the the 26L. Sometimes I bring the big one on my back plus carry the DLBC with a shoulder strap.

    I do travel very minimally and often do long vacations with the S19.

    To answer the original question, if a bag is not both light weight and high quality I sell it or donate it. To me weight is king and classic look/feel/quality are queen.
    DLBC, WF, S19, Pilot, DLBP, PCSB, A30, SA plus other misc goodies.
    ďNot all those who wander are lost.Ē - Bilbo Baggins (J.R.R. Tolkien 1892-1973)

  3. #3
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    I've sold or given away four Cafe Bags so far. I've learned that the layout and style just doesn't work for me. I also plan to sell my Side Effects at some point - the Side Kicks and Travel Cubelets work much, much better for me.

    I'm probably going to sell my Co-Pilot soon, or swap for a Pilot. Since I already have a DLBC, it feels like a somewhat redundant bag. I need something a bit larger as a non-minimalist work bag.

    I'm forever on the brink of selling my A45 because it's just too big for me. I don't because it does an amazing job of holding stuff for both me and my mom (she's disabled), and because I harbor fantasies of running away to be a digital nomad, and it would be perfect for that.

    Never ever gonna sell: Side Kicks (I have three and want more!), Smart Alec, Synapse 19.

    Have but am somewhat ambivalent about: Brain Bag (it's my emergency bag and lives in my car), Daylight Backpack (hasn't seen use since I got the S19), Swift (I like it but as an EDC it gets heavy and awkward to carry)
    Probably not going to buy: Synapse 25 (redundant), Western Flyer/Tristar (not my style), Maker's Bag (No flaps!), or a Road Duffle (I like the backpack conversion too much)

    Intrigued by: Stowaway, Parental Unit, Pop Tote

  4. #4
    Forum Member Sacharissa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SarahJaneMakes View Post
    What do you do? Do you keep multiple bags for different travel and EDC purposes? I feel like I’ve been chasing the #onebagtorulethemall my whole life. But have found it’s more like one bag to rule each activity.
    I have also been on a quest to find the mythical “One Bag to Rule Them All,” but like you, have come to the conclusion that it is more like finding the perfect bag for each activity. On the bright side, that’s what keeps Tom Bihn in business and making more fabulous bags for our quest! Wink
    On an Epic Quest for the Perfect Bag...

    One Bag to rule them all, One Bag to find them,
    One Bag to carry them all and in the aircraft bind them...

  5. #5
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    Expect to continue to change the way you travel. I've been a one bag traveler for over 25 years and I am consistently changing. New products, new rules, new circumstances. Just as life evolves, so does travel.

    I recently did a clear out of my bags. Since my back no longer allows me to travel with a convertible bag, I did get rid of some. I had a large collection of Tom Bihn bags and found good homes for many. After all, keeping a Tom Bihn bag in storage is a waste of a great bag. Let it free so someone else may enjoy it. That being said, I did keep my first Aeronaut. I'm sentimental and you never forget your first one.
    Editor--One Bag, One World: News, Reviews & Community for Light Travelers. http://www.1bag1world.com

    Aeronaut(2), Tri-Star(2) Cadet , Large Cafe Bag, Travel Tray, Travel Money Belt, Absolute Straps(3), Side Effect, Clear Quarter Packing Cubes (2), 3D Organizer Cubes (4), Aeronaut & Tri-Star Packing Cubes, Clear Organizer Wallet, numerous Organizer Pouches,, Guardian Dual Function Light, Vertical Netbook Cache, Nexus 7 Cache, RFID Passport Pouch, numerous Key Straps.

  6. #6
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    To me, its mostly about packing style and purpose of trip. I'm more of a cube/3D packer, than a flat packer. The 19-30ish liter range is what I prefer and I've found that I don't like wide bags on my back (S25, BB, etc)... I'd rather go taller than wider. With that being said, I am tempted by the Western Flier for those rare occasions where I might want to flat pack for a special event...

    As for quantity, I'm fortunate to be able to indulge in 'one bag' per trip style, not one bag in my entire life. Smilie

    The A30 is great for living out of, with space for extras on longer trips... the SA is for when I'm on the move...
    S19 is my EDC for when laptops or extra stuff are involved... Luminary for EDC handsfree/no laptop...
    SK for city walking (because it can hold a 16oz Nalgene water bottle and the bag is cross body) and in-flight back of the seat pocket bag (after being removed from A30 or SA)...
    Pop Tote is my gym bag, I leave it packed with toiletries, etc. and just do the clothes each night...

    I like the idea of the Night Flight and Co-Pilot and have them... but they haven't made it on a trip yet, so I'll probably trade or sell them

    As I've acquired TB items, I've given away two rolling suitcases to friends and a TSA compliant laptop backpack to a coworker (I'm Global Entry/Pre)... I did keep a decent 25ish liter Swiss Army for a 'go bag' that lives in my entry way (I live in earthquake country)...

    I kept one lightweight rolling carryon size clamshell ABS suitcase for if/when I can't backpack carry something... if you've ever had to travel whilst sick or injured, the rolling bag is the way to go... I've also relocated for work multiple times and two checked rolling bags will get me through the first couple months of work/life whilst my 'stuff' is packed up and on a moving van somewhere...

    Right now I am VERY interested in what new packs TB is cooking up... what is lacking in the line up (to me) is a clamshell pack in the 20-30L range, similar to a Tortuga Outbreaker or a Minaal... the SA is great, but it's a top loader - not as useful to live out of as a clamshell.... if we don't see something along those lines this year, I may have to go outside of TB for it...

  7. #7
    Volunteer Moderator aedifica's Avatar
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    I have finally become willing to part with my Aeronaut 30 because I'm so much more likely to use my Aeronaut 45 or my new Western Flyer. For some reason the backpack straps on the A30 don't sit quite as comfortably on me as the backpack straps on those other two bags. So I'd say comfort is a big part of it.

    I do keep different bags for different purposes! For decades I've had a Thing about having the right bag with the right pockets for any activity: for knitting, for carrying a laptop, etc etc etc. That makes Tom Bihn bags with their well-thought-out design all the more tempting for me--it isn't just a matter of finding a single bag and being done bag shopping for the next few years, but rather a repeated "ooh, that pocket arrangement might mean Bag X works better for Activity Y than the one I've been using for it!"
    I have a bunch of great bags. Favorite color combos include Aubergine/Island, Navy/Solar, Forest/UV, Original Halcyon/Wasabi, Cloud/Viridian... and now also Seapine/UV!

    I've fulfilled my dream of palindromic-colored nested bags! Navy/Ultraviolet Pilot with Aubergine/Island Side Effect inside: blue purple purple blue. Forest/UV A45 with Aubergine/Wasabi Co-Pilot inside: green purple purple green.

  8. #8
    Forum Member bermudajes's Avatar
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    If I havenít used a bag for some time, I tend to trade it for something I think will be more useful, or sell it so the bag isnít just sitting unloved in my closet. Iíve also traded bags away because the fabric hasnít been right for me - my first MCB was cordura, which was too abrasive; my second was parapack, which was too swishy; my third is 525 ballistic and itís just right!

    I sometimes regret trading my very first TB bag - a Synapse 19 in steel dyneema/UV. I wanted to love that bag so much, but after a couple trips with it I learned it just wasnít right for me. That color combination, though... oh, I miss that!

  9. #9
    Forum Member melminimalist's Avatar
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    While changing my hoarder life to that of a minimalist bags were the hardest thing for me to part with. Since I was three years old, I have been a bag person. For some it's shoes, make-up, DVDs music etcetera. I love bags! Ironically it was discovering Tom Bihn that really allowed me to see the uselessness of my other bags. I had a whole new learning curve where I truly paid attention and discovered what it was I really like/looked for in a bag. I love messenger bags, but organizationaly the Synapse was the winner for me (I hate flap messengers). Also I have always carried a purse and hated it. In going from a sidekick which I realized was too big after a few months, to a side effect, which was perfect, I eventually discovered I didn't need to carry a purse at all. I haven't for a month now and it's been sweet freedom. Without experimenting and inward reflection I wouldn't know these things about me. I guess this is a long way of saying that my bag choice changes as I get to know myself better. It has also helped me part with any bag I have not used in 3 months. I sell them on poshmark or ebay. I also have read konmari's book and learned to forgive myself for past purchases. Oh, and I welcome and eagerly anticipate a creation of Tom Bihn no flap messenger!

    Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
    "Not all who wander are lost"
    "Love people, use things, because the opposite never works" - The Minimalists
    Synapse 25 in Olive, Aubergine Side Effect, UV A30 PCBP, Sitka PCSB

  10. #10
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    I have been one bagging for pleasure travel for a few years now. I find one bagging difficult for business travel since I have to carry my heavy work laptop so I use my Pilot and a small Samsonite roller bag. I try to repurpose bags for both business and pleasure as much as possible, which is why I'm standardizing my TB bags on black halcyon and black 525 ballistic with ultraviolet zipper pulls. For example, my black halcyon Pilot is definitely my most functional bag; I use it as a laptop bag weekly and as my one bag on 3-4 day pleasure trips. By standardizing on black halcyon my bags look professional enough for the office yet at the same time it's unique look helps it stand out from the sea of black luggage in airplane overhead compartments (especially because few people have ultraviolet zipper pulls.) I sell any bag that I don't use weekly or doesn't work for both the office and pleasure travel (SCB).

  11. #11
    Forum Member sturbridge's Avatar
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    Like melminimalist, I've come to better know myself through Tom Bihn bags. I've had a bunch that I thought would work for me, that I've since traded or sold. I've come to learn that I prefer open space over pockets. I like to have similar items together in kits that I move from bag to bag depending on planned activities (so Cubelets have been so amazing for me). I realize I hate flaps, I prefer a vertical over a horizontal orientation and I'm really not a backpack person- although I will definitely make an exception if that Sprout is ever reincarnated as an adult bag.

    I once had a Parental Unit, but so many small compartments didn't work with my style, I traded it for a lovely steel dyneema Pilot. I really wanted the Night Flight to work for me, but I had a hard time getting a pair of shoes in there or a folded pair of jeans. I probably could have forced it, but I didn't want to distort such a lovely bag. I had a PCSB and found it too floppy, and the Sidekick a little too structured for what I wanted to carry in it.

    Just call me Goldilocks- always looking for that "just right" bag. The A30 is my just right bag for several day travel, the Pop Tote is just right for a weekend bag, and the Pilot is great for my very occasional work travel, the Travel Cubelet is great for quick trips to the store. I still need a just right day bag/purse/tote. Currently those are filled another brand's squarish utilitarian looking purse a little smaller and more squarish/less rectangular than a SCB, only with a zipper top and a small shop bag.
    Last edited by sturbridge; 02-25-2018 at 05:08 PM.
    Proud owner of: Pop Tote in cloud, Aeronaut 30 in steel/iberian, Travel Cubelet in Dawn, Travel Cubelet in Nebulous Grey , SE in steel parapack, SSB in black halcyon, Pilot in steel dyneema/steel, , Truck in Nebulous Gray, Small Zipped shop bag in black, Small Zipped shop bag in Dawn numerous pouches, 3D cubes, Q kits and straps, Cubelets and Ghost Whales!

  12. #12
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    The fact that I can sell or trade a TB bag quickly has made me much more likely to BUY ALL THE BAGS and test them out. Sometimes I've ordered them more then once, because a different fabric made me feel differently about the bag.

    I originally started with an A30 and WF, but they were both just a bit too small. They held all my stuff, but not in a configuration that worked for me. I wish the WF was just 1/2 inch bigger in all dimensions and had Pilot front pockets.

    I love the D36 (medium road duffle) and I'm heartbroken that it's discontinued. I love the long thin shape and the way the pockets work. I wish the handle was on the side like the Aeronauts, though.

    I've now settled on a Pilot and 2 A45s. Normally one A45 would do me and hubby together, but I think underpacking 2 bags will get us past size and weight restrictions that sharing a bag and packing it full might not. I like the 2-D acreage of the A45 better than the A30.

  13. #13
    Forum Member brucep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SarahJaneMakes View Post
    Do you keep multiple bags for different travel and EDC purposes? I feel like I’ve been chasing the #onebagtorulethemall my whole life. But have found it’s more like one bag to rule each activity.
    * Synapse 19
    * Something for wilderness backpacking
    * Shop bag in the car

  14. #14
    Forum Member Jaffa's Avatar
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    I too like the idea of just one bag covering all types of travel/jobs, however, due to the quality/look of TB bags, that isn’t going to happen.
    I tend to order a bag and then realise its either a bit too big or a bit too small, so I will sell the wrong sized bag, when I have got the replacement, for example I should have ordered a Western Flyer instead of a Tri Star.
    I ordered a Synapse 19 Grey/UV and realise its either too small or too stiff, so I ordered a Synapse 25 and use that instead. I would like to say I could fit everything into a S19, but at the moment that’s only in my dreams. So the S19 will be either traded/swopped or sold!.
    I use the Co Pilot every week, but still wonder if a Pilot would suit me better, but this is probably due to larger front pockets. I use it for overnight/ change of clothes and plane travel, but the have a problem that my toiletry bag is a tight fit.
    S25 Black halcyon/NWS: S19 Grey/UV: WF Black/NWS: Co Pilot Grey/UV, & various little pouches all purples/grey.

  15. #15
    Forum Member Perseffect's Avatar
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    Iím almost embarrassed to say this but there are 4 reasons I trade or sell in order of likelihood.
    1. Size/design isnít quite right
    2. I fancy a different colour
    3. Wanted to try a different fabric in the same bag
    4. The label

    The last one is terrible but I have traded/sold items to get a preferred label. To be specific I really hated the plain ďMade in USAĒ one and have traded away bags with this label only to try and get it again with a newer label.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Aeronaut 45 (Navy/NWS), A30 (Black/Island), Tristar (Steel/Island), Western Flyer (Steel/Island), Pilot (Steel/Island), Synapse 25 (Mars Red/NWS), Synapse 19 (Black/Island) & (Burnt Orange/Steel), Ristretto 11 (Navy/Steel), Small Cafe Bag (Navy/Steel) & (Mars Red/Dawn), Daylight Briefcase (Cloud/Dawn), Side Kick (Mars Red/Dawn), Travel Cubelet (Mars Red)

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