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  1. #1
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    The Carolinas
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    SG33: Not for me, but maybe for you

    To disclose my biases, I normally use an A45, S22, and side kick. I tried to like the SG33, but it just doesn't fit my packing/carrying style. Sometimes the A45 feels too big and the S22 is too small, so I thought a 33L bag would be good, even if its not a clamshell opening; I was wrong.

    Obviously, the main bag opening is vertical, and there's just a large cavern in which to store items. With 33 liters of open space, its too cavernous for my usage. Even using packing cubes, the space is too wide and deep for anything I can imagine carrying. If someone intends to carry lots of thin, vertical items, it could work very well, but anything shorter will, unsurprisingly, get lost in the space. I'd be interested in trying the SG23, and maybe the smaller space would allow for better usage; otherwise, I'll stick to clamshell openings.
    On a positive note, comparatively the bag feels very light, probably due to the use of 525 fabric instead of my normal 1050. I also like the new mesh backside. After fully packing the bag, I could definitely feel improved airflow compared to my S22, and I think the new design is a large improvement over other TB backpacks. I also really like the zipper compartment on the top flap; its easy to access, and I found that I could get items from it even while wearing the pack. The softer, extra-padded shoulder straps are a nice addition, too; I have a synapse with older straps, and the extra padding is definitely a must-have for me.

    Final judgment: the SG33 isn't for me, but someone else with different needs might find it to be a good bag that meets their needs.
    Last edited by ThomGault; 10-29-2020 at 07:39 AM.

  2. #2
    Forum Member PaulT00's Avatar
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    By the seaside, England
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    That's really useful to know. I found a similar problem even with the big Synapse (I have a S25 Guide's Edition in Mars Red) - even though it has a lot more organisation, the main compartment is still a big dark cavern really. Beautiful bag, but just didn't work for my use case when I test packed it as an alternative to my A30. Sigh.
    A45CC K CQPC 3DCCGES25 SK SCBQKTTMCBLSB TT TSS4 PCSBSCBTT CQPC PQBPQK LT SETT 3DCCQKS19 TT P3DCCTS PP BBLCBCP TTRi QK NFTD A30DLBC

  3. #3
    Volunteer Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThomGault View Post
    To disclose my biases, I normally use an A45, S22, and side kick. I tried to like the SG33, but it just doesn't fit my packing/carrying style. Sometimes the A45 feels too big and the S22 is too small, so I thought a 33L bag would be good, even if its not a clamshell opening; I was wrong.

    Obviously, the main bag opening is vertical, and there's just a large cavern in which to store items. With 33 liters of open space, its too cavernous for my usage. Even using packing cubes, the space is too wide and deep for anything I can imagine carrying. If someone intends to carry lots of thin, vertical items, it could work very well, but anything shorter will, unsurprisingly, get lost in the space. I'd be interested in trying the SG23, and maybe the smaller space would allow for better usage; otherwise, I'll stick to clamshell openings.
    On a positive note, comparatively the bag feels very light, probably due to the use of 525 fabric instead of my normal 1050. I also like the new mesh backside. After fully packing the bag, I could definitely feel improved airflow compared to my S22, and I think the new design is a large improvement over other TB backpacks. I also really like the zipper compartment on the top flap; its easy to access, and I found that I could get items from it even while wearing the pack. The softer, extra-padded shoulder straps are a nice addition, too; I have a synapse with older straps, and the extra padding is definitely a must-have for me.

    Final judgment: the SG33 isn't for me, but someone else with different needs might find it to be a good bag that meets their needs.
    Thanks @ThomGault , great review, very helpful!

  4. #4
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    I like "simple" bags. Bags that give me a single big compartment to throw all my stuff in , and a small compartment to throw loose items that i dont want to rummage around for in the bottom of my bag. A bag that I dont have to shuffle through a bunch of pockets to remember where I put something. "Its not _that_ big. It's in here somewhere."

    Still, I feel like the SG33 would probably be a bit too much for an EDC bag. But the SG23? I'm betting it will be perfect for a "just throw it in the bag and go" personality like myself.

    Kudos to Tom Bihn for offering something on the "simple" side of the spectrum with a bunch of usable space and minimal organization, in addition to nicely organized bags like the Synapse. Thanks!

    Sent from my SM-G970U using Tapatalk

  5. #5
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    I also like simple bags. I have endless TB accessories, but the previous TB bags with all the pockets are just not for me, either. For international travel, I want a bag that's ultralight and carry on size, that I can create my own pockets internally (with packing cubes or similar.) Bonus points if I can fit the bag under the seat in front of me. It seems the SG33 would be really ideal for my carry on only travel goals. :)

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