Main TOM BIHN website
 
emailus@tombihn.com

COMMUNITY FORUMS

Welcome! We're glad you are here. This is the place to ask for bag advice, help other people out, post reviews, and share photos and videos.

x

First, select your desired search engine:

  • Google Search
  • DuckDuckGo
  • Original Forum Search Engine

User Tag List

Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    Volunteer Moderator bartleby's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Share
    Location: Germany / Hobbies: Photography & Guitars
    Posts
    423
    Mentioned
    77 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23

    Hi folks, I want to add my first impressions of the Shadow Guide 23 after I already had a great time with its bigger brother. I got it in Ursa which is a gorgeous warm brown with some purple and reddish reflections depending on the light. The black elements bring out the quality of Ursa quite nicely and thus, the overall appearance is really awesome!

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-7-jpg

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-23-jpg

    In comparison to its bigger brother you immediately see the difference in size, which is ten liters (23 vs. 33) and that of course is clearly noticeably in terms of space.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-10-jpg

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-11-jpg

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-12-jpg

    To give you an impression how it compares to other bags from the TB portfolio I put it between my faithful Smart Alec (on the left, discontinued at the moment, 26 liters) and the Synapse 25 (on the right, Guides Edition, 25 liters). (Another bag to compare it to is the Synik 22 which I miss in my collection as yet).

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-2-jpg

    The Smart Alec is the closest rival as it is also a top-loader with relatively little built in organizational features (two side pockets and two interior pockets in the lid) while the Synapse has a lot of organizational features i.e. smaller pockets accessible from the outside. I think it is very difficult to decide which design is “better”: more pockets for more organization or less pockets for more flexibility in how to use the bag and – at least for my taste – a clearer overall appearance. I think both principles have their merits and it depends very much on the purpose you want to use the bag for in the first place, e.g. EDC (perhaps more organization is better?) vs. travelling with a little hike here and there (more flexibility!). Since TB and other companies do offer many little helpers to organize your bag(s), you might still jazz up the top-loaders with organizational features as I often do (see below).

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-3-jpg

    Please note that the Smart Alec and the Synapse 25 have the “old” version of the shoulder straps and the Shadow Guide has the newer version of the shoulder straps, which have a thicker and softer padding resulting in an increased carrying comfort (although their predecessors weren’t bad at all in this regard!).

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-4-jpg

    Beside the difference in size the design of both Shadow Guides is exactly the same. They have a big main compartment closing with a drawstring, a top pocket accessible from the outside with two O-rings and two interior pockets on the inside or bottom of the lid.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-20-jpg

    To give you an impression of the size of the interior pockets I put my IPhone 7 in the left pocket and a small Ghost Whale Pouch in the right pocket. In each pocket there is an O-ring on the top (when the lid is openand turned backwards) to fix pouches and other things.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-50-jpg

    The Shadow Guides also have a newly designed skeleton shaped backpanel intended to reduce sweating when wearing the backpack for a longer time e.g. during a strenuous hike or in summer.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-9-jpg

    Momentarily, I use both SGs mainly for EDC purposes. But I hope that soon we all will be able to resume travelling again and I took the opportunity to testpack for a couple of days.
    Here is what I would take with me (clockwise from the upper left corner):
    - a pair of sandals for inside in a Packing Cube Shoulder Bag (4.5 liters)
    - an extra pair of jeans, underwear, t-shirts, socks in a large Western Flyer Packing Cube (10.5 liters)
    - a Spiff Kit with my toiletries
    - a Handy Little Thing 2 with adapters and flashdrives
    - the power supply for my Macbook in a small Q-Kit
    - phone and wallet
    - running clothes in a small Western Flyer Packing Cube (5.2. liters)
    - running shoes (US 11 / EU 45) in an Aeronaut 45 End Pocket Packing Cube (all fabric Halcyon, 5.5 liters)

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-1-jpg

    In this video I unpack all this stuff from the SG23: The medium Western Flyer Packing Cube fits nicely into the top pocket making optimal use of the space there. The rest went into the main compartment, phone and wallet went into the pockets on the bottom of the lid.



    Oh, and I forgot to pack my 13’’ Macbook Pro! That, of course went into the Laptop Compartment. As you can see: there is some space left and according to TB you can also fit a slim 15’’ laptop.



    I also did a similar test packing with the SG33. I used other packing cubes to fully utilize the space. So here is the stuff (clockwise from the top) and it is really a lot more than in the SG 23:
    - extra pair of jeans, two sweaters, underwear and socks in a Packing Cube Backpack (Tri-Star/Western Flyer, 13.6 liters)
    - t-shirts in a small Tri-Star Packing Cube (3.5 liters)
    - snood, hat and masks in a size 3 Travel Stuff Sack
    - running shoes (US11 / EU 45) in an Aeronaut 45 Side Pocket Packing Cube (all fabric Halcyon, 5.5 liters)
    - a bag for toiletries
    - running clothes in a large Aeronaut 30 Packing Cube (10 liters)

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-13-jpg

    This little video shows me unpacking the SG33: The A30 Packing Cube fit snug into the top compartment the rest went into the main compartment.



    Unfortunately, travelling is not on the horizon yet, so, let’s turn to EDC: I use a Freudian Slip in all of my bags because it just makes my life easier as I don’t have to search for the nitty-gritty :) In both SGs you can use the Freudian Slip for the Brain Bag or the one for the Synapse 25. Both have their merits: While the Brain Bag version makes better use of the rectangular shape of the SG23/SG33 the version for the Synapse has two zipper pockets at the top which I love.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-5-jpg

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-6-jpg

    In addition to the Freudian Slip (which I fix with a 1’ Single Gate Keeper to the drawstring) I use a 3D Organizer Cube (in this case a clear one) that I clip to the two O-rings in the main compartment (with two 1’ Single Gate Keepers). This video shows the use of the Freudian Slip and the 3DOC in the SG23:



    Now, if you trying to find out which of the two will be your guide out of the shadow I think that besides the size of the backpack it is also important to consider your own size. I am 6’’ (183 cm) and rather slim (158 lbs/72 kg) and my posture is not the best. In terms of carrying comfort I tend to prefer the SG33. I think this is mainly because the shoulder straps are longer and because the bag itself is taller it sits lower on my back: Here the SG23 (of note: the sternum strap is in the lowest possible position).

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-40-jpg

    And here the SG33:

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-32-jpg

    Thus, if you’re unsure and if you’re living in the US I’d consider ordering both bags and try them out.

    Overall, I like both bags very much. Perhaps I am leaning a little bit more towards the SG33 as I sometimes carry so much stuff (e.g. my gym stuff, groceries etc.) that I love having more space. However, on most days 23 liters is more than enough and the smaller size is appealing too.

    Now, the choice is yours :)
    ...spread joy in your neighbourhood (and not Corona!) Smilie Rainbow Cheers
    current bags: Smart Alec, Guide's Pack, Guide's Edition S25, Luminary 15, Daylight Backpack, Aeronaut 45, Tri-Star, Road Buddy 36, Daylight Briefcase, Small Yeoman Duffel, bits and pieces

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Share
    SF Bay area
    Posts
    2,377
    Mentioned
    181 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Great review @bartleby !

    Never occurred to me to try the Western Flyer larger cube against the back wall - I forget that I have it sometimes. I think that's a good idea.
    I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...

  3. #3
    Volunteer Moderator bartleby's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Share
    Location: Germany / Hobbies: Photography & Guitars
    Posts
    423
    Mentioned
    77 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by G42 View Post
    Great review @bartleby !

    Never occurred to me to try the Western Flyer larger cube against the back wall - I forget that I have it sometimes. I think that's a good idea.
    Thank you, @G42 ! I've kind of rediscovered the Western Flyer and Tristar Packing Cubes since I travel a lot with the Yeomans. But for the larger backpacks (Guide's Pack, Shadow Guide) they are also very useful as they pack rather flat and thus leave a lot of space for other stuff.
    ...spread joy in your neighbourhood (and not Corona!) Smilie Rainbow Cheers
    current bags: Smart Alec, Guide's Pack, Guide's Edition S25, Luminary 15, Daylight Backpack, Aeronaut 45, Tri-Star, Road Buddy 36, Daylight Briefcase, Small Yeoman Duffel, bits and pieces

  4. #4
    Volunteer Moderator
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Posts
    1,548
    Mentioned
    67 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by bartleby View Post
    Hi folks, I want to add my first impressions of the Shadow Guide 23 after I already had a great time with its bigger brother. I got it in Ursa which is a gorgeous warm brown with some purple and reddish reflections depending on the light. The black elements bring out the quality of Ursa quite nicely and thus, the overall appearance is really awesome!

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-7-jpg

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-23-jpg

    In comparison to its bigger brother you immediately see the difference in size, which is ten liters (23 vs. 33) and that of course is clearly noticeably in terms of space.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-10-jpg

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-11-jpg

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-12-jpg

    To give you an impression how it compares to other bags from the TB portfolio I put it between my faithful Smart Alec (on the left, discontinued at the moment, 26 liters) and the Synapse 25 (on the right, Guides Edition, 25 liters). (Another bag to compare it to is the Synik 22 which I miss in my collection as yet).

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-2-jpg

    The Smart Alec is the closest rival as it is also a top-loader with relatively little built in organizational features (two side pockets and two interior pockets in the lid) while the Synapse has a lot of organizational features i.e. smaller pockets accessible from the outside. I think it is very difficult to decide which design is “better”: more pockets for more organization or less pockets for more flexibility in how to use the bag and – at least for my taste – a clearer overall appearance. I think both principles have their merits and it depends very much on the purpose you want to use the bag for in the first place, e.g. EDC (perhaps more organization is better?) vs. travelling with a little hike here and there (more flexibility!). Since TB and other companies do offer many little helpers to organize your bag(s), you might still jazz up the top-loaders with organizational features as I often do (see below).

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-3-jpg

    Please note that the Smart Alec and the Synapse 25 have the “old” version of the shoulder straps and the Shadow Guide has the newer version of the shoulder straps, which have a thicker and softer padding resulting in an increased carrying comfort (although their predecessors weren’t bad at all in this regard!).

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-4-jpg

    Beside the difference in size the design of both Shadow Guides is exactly the same. They have a big main compartment closing with a drawstring, a top pocket accessible from the outside with two O-rings and two interior pockets on the inside or bottom of the lid.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-20-jpg

    To give you an impression of the size of the interior pockets I put my IPhone 7 in the left pocket and a small Ghost Whale Pouch in the right pocket. In each pocket there is an O-ring on the top (when the lid is openand turned backwards) to fix pouches and other things.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-50-jpg

    The Shadow Guides also have a newly designed skeleton shaped backpanel intended to reduce sweating when wearing the backpack for a longer time e.g. during a strenuous hike or in summer.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-9-jpg

    Momentarily, I use both SGs mainly for EDC purposes. But I hope that soon we all will be able to resume travelling again and I took the opportunity to testpack for a couple of days.
    Here is what I would take with me (clockwise from the upper left corner):
    -a pair of sandals for inside in a Packing Cube Shoulder Bag (4.5 liters)
    -an extra pair of jeans, underwear, t-shirts, socks in a large Western Flyer Packing Cube (10.5 liters)
    -a Spiff Kit with my toiletries
    -a Handy Little Thing 2 with adapters and flashdrives
    -the power supply for my Macbook in a small Q-Kit
    -phone and wallet
    -running clothes in a small Western Flyer Packing Cube (5.2. liters)
    -running shoes (US 11 / EU 45) in an Aeronaut 45 End Pocket Packing Cube (all fabric Halcyon, 5.5 liters)

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-1-jpg

    In this video I unpack all this stuff from the SG23: The medium Western Flyer Packing Cube fits nicely into the top pocket making optimal use of the space there. The rest went into the main compartment, phone and wallet went into the pockets on the bottom of the lid.



    Oh, and I forgot to pack my 13’’ Macbook Pro! That, of course went into the Laptop Compartment. As you can see: there is some space left and according to TB you can also fit a slim 15’’ laptop.



    I also did a similar test packing with the SG33. I used other packing cubes to fully utilize the space. So here is the stuff (clockwise from the top) and it is really a lot more than in the SG 23:
    -extra pair of jeans, two sweaters, underwear and socks in a Packing Cube Backpack (Tri-Star/Western Flyer, 13.6 liters)
    -t-shirts in a small Tri-Star Packing Cube (3.5 liters)
    -snood, hat and masks in a size 3 Travel Stuff Sack
    -running shoes (US11 / EU 45) in an Aeronaut 45 Side Pocket Packing Cube (all fabric Halcyon, 5.5 liters)
    -a bag for toiletries
    -running clothes in a large Aeronaut 30 Packing Cube (10 liters)

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-13-jpg

    This little video shows me unpacking the SG33: The A30 Packing Cube fit snug into the top compartment the rest went into the main compartment.



    Unfortunately, travelling is not on the horizon yet, so, let’s turn to EDC: I use a Freudian Slip in all of my bags because it just makes my life easier as I don’t have to search for the nitty-gritty :) In both SGs you can use the Freudian Slip for the Brain Bag or the one for the Synapse 25. Both have their merits: While the Brain Bag version makes better use of the rectangular shape of the SG23/SG33 the version for the Synapse has two zipper pockets at the top which I love.

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-5-jpg

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-6-jpg

    In addition to the Freudian Slip (which I fix with a 1’ Single Gate Keeper to the drawstring) I use a 3D Organizer Cube (in this case a clear one) that I clip to the two O-rings in the main compartment (with two 1’ Single Gate Keepers). This video shows the use of the Freudian Slip and the 3DOC in the SG23:



    Now, if you trying to find out which of the two will be your guide out of the shadow I think that besides the size of the backpack it is also important to consider your own size. I am 6’’ (183 cm) and rather slim (158 lbs/72 kg) and my posture is not the best. In terms of carrying comfort I tend to prefer the SG33. I think this is mainly because the shoulder straps are longer and because the bag itself is taller it sits lower on my back: Here the SG23 (of note: the sternum strap is in the lowest possible position).

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-40-jpg

    And here the SG33:

    Twentysomething: More impressions of the Shadow Guide 23-sg_23-32-jpg

    Thus, if you’re unsure and if you’re living in the US I’d consider ordering both bags and try them out.

    Overall, I like both bags very much. Perhaps I am leaning a little bit more towards the SG33 as I sometimes carry so much stuff (e.g. my gym stuff, groceries etc.) that I love having more space. However, on most days 23 liters is more than enough and the smaller size is appealing too.

    Now, the choice is yours :)
    Great review @bartleby ! I too had not considered using my longer packing cubes. Thanks for the idea.

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •