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  1. #1
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    Looking for small lightweight companion bag for Tristar

    Hi,

    I'm brand new to the forum. I just bought a new Tristar with several accessories (packing cube [large and 2 small], tray, stuff sack, etc... I have a Patagonia MLC but found it just too heavy and a bit unwieldy for most of the business travel i do. So, wanted to go slightly smaller. After packing it, I still find I need to a little extra space for by Bose headphones and some other odds and ends. Dont' want to waste the space in the tristar for that.

    Can you recommend any lightweight daypack/bag/etc...that won't draw too much suspicion from gate agents, etc?

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator Alumni Ilkyway's Avatar
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    Hi ursojs and welcome to the forums!

    My absolut favorit small bag from Tom Bihn is the knew Side Kick. Depending on which Boses you have and how much bitds and bobs you want to pack extra this might work. I am a bag-in-bag nutter so I right now have it in my Smart Alec with some essentials that I would want with me if I decide to leve the backpack in the car.
    Of cause next put in size are the Cafe Bags from Small to Large. And on a lager scale I think the Nightflight Travel Duffel is a great side kick to a main travel bag.

    Maybe you could tell us more about what should go in there? Do you prefear crossbody wear, small backpack even (Daylight Backpack springs to mind) or handcarry?

    Ilkyway
    “Ankh-Morpork people considered that spelling was a sort of optional extra. They believed in it in the same way they believed in punctuation; it didn't matter where you put it so long as it was there.”

    By Sir Terence David John Pratchett from The Truth

  3. #3
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    Ilkyway, thank you very much for your reply.

    I envision that the bag would hold my Bose QuietComfort 35 (the headphones in the case is about 8.50" x 6" x 2.5"), the rest of odds and ends might be glasses, my phone, passport and wallet. I don't expect anything bulky. Just items that I would access part of air travel. I was thinking about the sidekick or the Packing Cube Shoulder bag. I could use a Packging Cube Backpack or similar as a daypack. That I could pack in the Tristar.

  4. #4
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    Greetings and welcome,
    In addition to the excellent suggestions from Ilkyway, the Packing Cube Shoulder Bag makes a great flight bag. Many Tom Bihn bags work great with double snap hooks to hang off the tray table, keeping your things nearby and organized. elisa

  5. #5
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    Alaska girl, thank you very much.

  6. #6
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    My travel combo is usually a TriStar and Ristretto 13. I can use this combo for week long trips (and I would say I am a medium packer - not minimal but do carry extras).

    This is what I carried in my Ristretto for one trip:

    Looking for small lightweight companion bag for Tristar-ristretto13_lvtrip-jpgLooking for small lightweight companion bag for Tristar-ristretto13_lvtrip-2-jpg

    There is also a 14" laptop in there (cannot see it in the picture). There is a Side Effect on top with all my electronics gadgets. On the side is a clear case with my basic toiletries. In the front are a bluetooth speaker and spare glasses. In the clear ziplock is a spare T-shirt, socks and underwear just in case something happens to my Tristar. There are also a few TB pouches to hold small items I do not want to fall out but still have quick access to The Ristretto still looks small even with all this stuff (it has a very small unassuming footprint). As for a small bag to hang off the back of an airline seat, I have not tried it with a Ristretto but there are 2 sets of loops in the back that you could use to hook to the back (may be a bit big). However, you could also just put a PCSB in the Ristretto and pull it out in-flight to hang off the seatback if you like that concept.

    Here is a picture of my travel combo:

    Looking for small lightweight companion bag for Tristar-lv_5day_tspacked-jpg

    Now, if you need more space, I would say any of the TB bags that can be personal items would work - e.g. Pilot, Co-Pilot, any of the Cafe Bags. I like the look of the Ristretto. The Ballistic Nylon looks very professional and the Vertical Messenger Style give it a unique look, IMHO.

    Hope this helps
    Cheers!
    Last edited by tpnl; 02-18-2017 at 09:58 AM.
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  7. #7
    Forum Member nukediver's Avatar
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    I'm a big fan of the Cafe bags for this purpose- I find them to be quite comfortable since they have a bit wider strap. A medium cafe bag might be an option for you.
    Eat well, travel often.

  8. #8
    Forum Member Perseffect's Avatar
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    Others have suggested these already; my lightweight choices along with my Tristar are usually a Daylight Breifcase or Daylight Backpack.

    Cafe bags could also work well.


    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)

  9. #9
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    A Tristar is on my wishlist, but I do have a Co-Pilot, which I use just for the purpose that you describe. Not too big, and lots of organization.

  10. #10
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    Thank you, very helpful information. One question...have you ever had any issues on domestic or international airlines carrying both the Tristar and Ristretto on flights? It would seem the Ristretto might be too big but it could be inconspicuous enough that no one would care.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ursojs View Post
    Thank you, very helpful information. One question...have you ever had any issues on domestic or international airlines carrying both the Tristar and Ristretto on flights? It would seem the Ristretto might be too big but it could be inconspicuous enough that no one would care.
    I've travelled plenty of times here in Australia and the US using an A45 (in halcyon, not jam packed) and a Ristretto (or a Pilot) as carry on, and have never been questioned. Caveat, all my flights have been with Virgin/Qantas/Delta/AA, so not on a service with baggage restrictions.

  12. #12
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ursojs View Post
    Thank you, very helpful information. One question...have you ever had any issues on domestic or international airlines carrying both the Tristar and Ristretto on flights? It would seem the Ristretto might be too big but it could be inconspicuous enough that no one would care.
    My experience has been on flights between US and Canada and have had no issues taking my TS and Ristretto with me (no gate checking at all). Also, I have flown mostly on the CRJ100 type aircraft which are one of the smaller planes with limited carry-on storage space. In fact, they once announced that all carry-on would be gate checked and only briefcases and personal items would be allowed to be carried in the cabin. I just carried my TS as a briefcase and my Ristretto as a personal item (It is not big at all - a few inches smaller in all dimensions than the personal item limits). They did not look at me twice when boarding. It was so satisfying when I landed to just take my carry-on and go straight to the taxi area instead of wanting for a gate-checked bag or for my bag to be unloaded onto the carousel. I actually went to this carry setup after my new Tumi International sized roller (smaller than domestic carry-on) got gate checked on its maiden flight. I was so disappointed.

    Here is a picture of the Ristretto on my to hopefully show its size better (I am 5'11"):





    Hope this helps
    Cheers!
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  13. #13
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    TPNL, thank you very much. Your pictures and info provides a lot of clarity. All food for thought.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ursojs View Post
    Hi,

    I'm brand new to the forum. I just bought a new Tristar with several accessories (packing cube [large and 2 small], tray, stuff sack, etc... I have a Patagonia MLC but found it just too heavy and a bit unwieldy for most of the business travel i do. So, wanted to go slightly smaller. After packing it, I still find I need to a little extra space for by Bose headphones and some other odds and ends. Dont' want to waste the space in the tristar for that.

    Can you recommend any lightweight daypack/bag/etc...that won't draw too much suspicion from gate agents, etc?
    I have a pilot to go with my tristar...my BF has a co-pilot. Based on what you are describing I would recommend the co-pilot. I have been trying to snag it from the BF since he got it....

  15. #15
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    All,

    Just to give an update. I received my order today which included a SideKick, DLBC, clear pouches, 15" Macbook Cache and some other odds and ends. I can report that the my laptop fits in both the Tristar and the DLBC (w/o cache) comfortably. The 15" cache is a bit bigger than I expected relative to the dimensions on hand. The cache can squeeze into the DLBC with the computer though I am not sure that I would even bother with the cache in the DLBC. The computer along with the cords and adapter are fine on their own I think. The DLBC is super light weight and will pack nicely in the Tristar. In hindsight I might have been able to go with a smaller size cache but I am good for now.

    I also picked up a Sidekick. I'll use that to carry my headphones and stuff. Probably the only mistakes I made were clear pouches. The Large one is considerably larger than I expected. It won't fit in the DLBC and even takes a lot of space in the Tristar. I bought several small ones which I anticipated to bigger than they were. Some will get used but probably others won't...not sure.

    For future purchase(s), not now since shipping to Thailand is expensive I look at the DLBackpack/packing cube as a combo to the Tristar or maybe a co-pilot. I'm very impressed with the Halycon material...I wish I bought the Tristar in it but I am fine with the ballistic nonetheless.

    If anyone would like pictures please let me know.

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