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  1. #1
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    Help with Bag Decision

    I have had a Hartmann bag for the last 5 years for my briefcase and it has given out. The more I research bags, the more I come back to Tom Bihn. The issue I am having is finding which bag will hold what I need it to, and hope some of the people here can assist.

    I need it to be briefcase/messenger bag form, rather than backpack.
    It needs to hold a 13" MacBook Pro
    10.5" iPad Pro
    Bose QC35 headphones
    All usual chargers and such
    But one thing that is a bit odd that needs to come with me is this

    https://www.tenba.com/products/tool-box-8

    Its a Tenba accessories item that I use for camera batteries since I cannot check lithium ion batteries.

    I was looking into the Pilot and Cadet, but neither has a dedicated ipad case and not sure they have the room for the Tenba case. Thoughts?

  2. #2
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    They have room for the Tenba case, but not with a MacBook Pro and an iPad Pro as well.

  3. #3
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    It looks like the photo case dimension fits well in the Cadet as well as the Pilot.

    However, fitting all your items looks like a tight squeeze, but unlike Tom Bihn Customer Service really nice people, I am not an expert on briefcase, as my forum name suggests. Email, or call them, 1-800-729-9607 | emailus@tombihn.com

    My favorite is to Instant Message the Crew (customer service) on the lower left side of each product page, there is a medium blue tab with the word "Questions", all you have to do is enter whatever name you want and start chatting live with bag experts.

    Below are the hours at Tom Bihn Inc, I mention them because they are not the typical 9 to 5.

    EMAIL & PHONE SUPPORT
    Monday - Friday
    6:30am - 2:30pm Pacific Time


    If it is at all possible, consider ordering both, you can return the one that doesn't suit you, provided you do it within the 60 days windows, the bag has all the tags and straps included and has only been tried on indoors.

    I have done that with a couple of bags, the return process is always fast and reliable.

  4. #4
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    The live chat feature on the website is also great for immediacy without having to talk on the phone.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cristina View Post
    The live chat feature on the website is also great for immediacy without having to talk on the phone.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    So I'm not the only one who thinks that on-line chatting is one of the greatest things EVER.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BWeaves View Post
    They have room for the Tenba case, but not with a MacBook Pro and an iPad Pro as well.
    Thank you. That makes sense and while it leaves me searching again, I am confident that they have a bag that will work.

  7. #7
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    Look at the Empire Builder. I carry a 13" MacBook Air in a cache IPad and a nook. It is quite large will carry everything you need.

  8. #8
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    I wonder if the maker bag would work for you? The question is if the ipad pro will fit in the zipper pocket in the back. If it does, I think you'd be good to go as the macbook pro & tenba case would definitely fit together. Actually, if you didn't care if the ipad pro was in the pocket (the pocket is super flat and wouldn't take up space if it was empty), it would all fit in there.
    A30 - Original Halcyon/UV MB - Aubergine/NWS LCB - Original Halcyon/Wasabi! MCB - Steel dyneema/Wasabi! STT - Wasabi! SE - NORDIC/Solar TT - Sitka

    TB Newbie First factory visit - 9/21/2018

    Heartís desire: a S19 or S25 in original NORDIC.

  9. #9
    Forum Member CJoshuaV's Avatar
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    I would also strongly recommend the Empire Builder. I think I have just about every size Messenger Bag TB has ever made (including the retired Super Ego). I think the Empire Builder will fit the bill for you. It's roomy enough to accommodate a Freudian Slip, and still have plenty of space in the main compartment.

  10. #10
    Forum Member bouncing's Avatar
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    I'd give up flat-out on the Cadet. I found that it could barely hold a laptop and my Bose headphones, much less your camera case thing. I ordered one and sent it back for that reason. The Cadet is quite slender with rigid construction, so it doesn't hold a lot.

    It's possible that the Pilot would be a win. It doesn't have a dedicated laptop *or* iPad sleeve, but you can buy those separately as caches (Tom Bihn's special laptop sleeves). Whether you like the cache system is very personally, but of course it has a lot of boosters around here.

    The only thing about the Empire Builder -- besides it being a big ol' bag -- is that it has a dedicated paper file/folder compartment. It's a compartment for files, in folders -- which has special rigid construction and all that. I find that's an awful lot of hardware going to make a compartment I personally would never use. But it is a pretty genius design over all.

  11. #11
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    I agree with jessmakes on the Maker's Bag. The Ipad should fit in the back pocket, so long as your case isn't too bulky. I fit a hard plastic 8.5x11" document folder in that pocket with no trouble.

    I use a Halcyon MB every day to carry a load similar in size to yours with room to spare. (I typically have a few hardback books which make a stack roughly the dimensions of your tenba.) So long as you would be comfortable with the flap-top design instead of a zipper, it'd do the job.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by bouncing View Post
    I'd give up flat-out on the Cadet. I found that it could barely hold a laptop and my Bose headphones, much less your camera case thing. I ordered one and sent it back for that reason. The Cadet is quite slender with rigid construction, so it doesn't hold a lot.

    It's possible that the Pilot would be a win. It doesn't have a dedicated laptop *or* iPad sleeve, but you can buy those separately as caches (Tom Bihn's special laptop sleeves). Whether you like the cache system is very personally, but of course it has a lot of boosters around here.

    The only thing about the Empire Builder -- besides it being a big ol' bag -- is that it has a dedicated paper file/folder compartment. It's a compartment for files, in folders -- which has special rigid construction and all that. I find that's an awful lot of hardware going to make a compartment I personally would never use. But it is a pretty genius design over all.
    Thank you. That becomes my problem because by the time I start adding so much to it, the cost gets quite unreasonable (eye of the beholder for sure). Then add that I am so used to a rigid style bag, that switching to something that looks less so, is odd to overlook.

    Quote Originally Posted by inky_thoughts View Post
    I agree with jessmakes on the Maker's Bag. The Ipad should fit in the back pocket, so long as your case isn't too bulky. I fit a hard plastic 8.5x11" document folder in that pocket with no trouble.

    I use a Halcyon MB every day to carry a load similar in size to yours with room to spare. (I typically have a few hardback books which make a stack roughly the dimensions of your tenba.) So long as you would be comfortable with the flap-top design instead of a zipper, it'd do the job.
    This is interesting. I had not looked really hard at this one as I figured it would be too small, but you might be right.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by JBGolf View Post
    Thank you. That becomes my problem because by the time I start adding so much to it, the cost gets quite unreasonable (eye of the beholder for sure). Then add that I am so used to a rigid style bag, that switching to something that looks less so, is odd to overlook.



    This is interesting. I had not looked really hard at this one as I figured it would be too small, but you might be right.
    I think the Makers bag is one of those that is frequently overlooked for its business purposes because of the name and the use case that is generally presented in the description, but it's just such a handy bag! :-)
    A30 - Original Halcyon/UV MB - Aubergine/NWS LCB - Original Halcyon/Wasabi! MCB - Steel dyneema/Wasabi! STT - Wasabi! SE - NORDIC/Solar TT - Sitka

    TB Newbie First factory visit - 9/21/2018

    Heartís desire: a S19 or S25 in original NORDIC.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jessmakes View Post
    I think the Makers bag is one of those that is frequently overlooked for its business purposes because of the name and the use case that is generally presented in the description, but it's just such a handy bag! :-)
    Agreed! I carried mine to work this morning quite easily holding a Microsoft Surface and mouse, a hardback journal, a Kindle, a can of sparkling water, a water bottle, and my usual stash of pens/wallet/small lotion/ID card.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  15. #15
    Forum Member CJoshuaV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bouncing View Post
    I'd give up flat-out on the Cadet. I found that it could barely hold a laptop and my Bose headphones, much less your camera case thing. I ordered one and sent it back for that reason. The Cadet is quite slender with rigid construction, so it doesn't hold a lot.

    It's possible that the Pilot would be a win. It doesn't have a dedicated laptop *or* iPad sleeve, but you can buy those separately as caches (Tom Bihn's special laptop sleeves). Whether you like the cache system is very personally, but of course it has a lot of boosters around here.

    The only thing about the Empire Builder -- besides it being a big ol' bag -- is that it has a dedicated paper file/folder compartment. It's a compartment for files, in folders -- which has special rigid construction and all that. I find that's an awful lot of hardware going to make a compartment I personally would never use. But it is a pretty genius design over all.
    I carried a Cadet for years, but finally decided it just didn't have the carry capacity I needed. The Empire Builder is pretty much the perfect size, although I did take out the file dividers.

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