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  1. #1
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    A45 vs. Brain Bag.

    Can someone please give me side by side photos of a fully stuffed A45 and a fully stuffed Brain Bag?

    I'm thinking of using the BB as a suitcase, and not a laptop backpack, so you can stuff them with towels or something like that.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    Here are a few pictures.

    A45 vs. Brain Bag.-a45_bb_3q1-jpg
    A45 vs. Brain Bag.-a45_bb_3q2-jpg
    A45 vs. Brain Bag.-a45_bb_front-jpg
    A45 vs. Brain Bag.-a45_bb_side-jpg
    A45 vs. Brain Bag.-a45_bb_top-jpg

    For me, if I know I am going to need to carry my bag a lot, I usually prefer my BB as it a true backpack (as long as everything fits in a BB). However, when super full, the BB can be a bit tight to get into the overhead compartment.

    Hope this helps

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

  3. #3
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    Thank you!!! Very helpful. The BB looks more cubeshaped. I'm thinking I may prefer the longer flatter shape of the A45.

    Greatly appreciated! Thanks for the photos.

  4. #4
    Forum Member GrussGott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BWeaves View Post
    Thank you!!! Very helpful. The BB looks more cubeshaped. I'm thinking I may prefer the longer flatter shape of the A45.

    Greatly appreciated! Thanks for the photos.
    The A45 is really great for longer casual travel - it carries a lot and fits into just about any overhead except the super small European ones. I can tell you from recent experience it fits on a Fokker!

    Last edited by GrussGott; 11-21-2017 at 01:20 AM.

  5. #5
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    I have an A45 that I haven't used yet, but I've test packed it and liked it. I traded up from an A30 which was just too small, not in total size but in the size of the compartments.

    I had a WF which was just a bit too small, but I liked the two compartments. The TS just had too many pockets, and I didn't like all the flat pockets on the front. A pocket needs depth to be useful or it just takes away space from another compartment. What I really want is a TS sized WF with pockets with depth, and the BB looked kind of like that bag. I may have to order one just to see it in person.

    My all time favorite bag is still the Doggienaut 36 (medium road duffle), both for it's size and the coyote trim instead of black trim.
    Last edited by BWeaves; 11-21-2017 at 06:19 AM.

  6. #6
    Forum Member GrussGott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BWeaves View Post
    I have an A45 that I haven't used yet, but I've test packed it and liked it.
    In completely unrelated news @BWeaves, I may be coming around to your way of thinking on the ballistic nylon versus black halcyon, at least for international trips. I'm on one now and have had a few incidents where your posts are haunting me.

    I thought you'd want to know Wink

  7. #7
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    Oh noes. Do you want to share what happened?

  8. #8
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BWeaves View Post
    Thank you!!! Very helpful. The BB looks more cubeshaped. I'm thinking I may prefer the longer flatter shape of the A45.

    Greatly appreciated! Thanks for the photos.
    Yes - you are so right that the BB can get cube-shaped when full. However, I like that the compression straps can help cinch things down a bit (make less cube like) for better weight balance (ie not as far away from your back) - that is if it you pack soft items like clothes in there and no hard items that cannot be squeezed. Also, the BB accepts 1.5" padded waist straps for better weight distribution where as the A45 does not (though you can attach a padded waist strap to where the shoulder strap attaches to the bottom of the A45 - just not be design).

    I also like the zipper covers - exclusive to the BB as far as I recall. They make doubly sure rain does not get in from the zippers (especially if they are left slightly open by mistake)

    If it helps, I think of the BB as a thicker, wider Western Flyer - ie 2 compartments with front pockets that are expandable.

    Hope this helps
    Cheers
    Last edited by tpnl; 11-21-2017 at 09:49 AM.
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  9. #9
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    Is the padded hip belt worth getting?

    I'm not a hiker. This would be a traipsing through airports type of bag.

  10. #10
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    IMHO, the padded hip belt is definitely worth getting. Like all padded hip belts, it distributes the weight going to your hips over a larger surface area. This makes it easier to carry a heavy load mainly on your hips and relieving a lot of strain on your shoulders. The padding keeps things from digging into your hip.

    Weary after a long week of travel and waiting at the airport, the padded hip belt really helped ease my load.

    What I like about the TB version is that it is removable when not needed and can be used on other bags - ie, the 1" version can be used on the S19/25, SA and even the DLBP, A30 packing cube and Stowaway - anything with a 1" webbing attachment loop. The BB has a 1.5" version of the padded strap that accounts for the extra weight a BB can hold.

    Now, while TB does not recommend it, the 1" and 1.5" padded hip belts can work on the Travel luggage from my experience (A30/45, Western Flyer, TriStar). The issue is that it can possibly twist a bit if using the designed attachment points (which are on the actual strap of the shoulder strap and not directly attached to the bag). However, I have found that you can squeeze it into the same loop that the shoulder strap connects to making them good to transfer the weight as designed. However, YMMV.


    Hope this helps

    Cheers!
    Last edited by tpnl; 11-21-2017 at 12:15 PM.
    TB Ballistic Black/Iberian Dyneema backpacks and briefcases for every occasion together with my cherished Nordic and Solar Dyneema!

  11. #11
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    If full, the BB, in Cordura, has trouble fitting under certain seat (aisle or window) for some airlines.

    However, Light/EDC Ballistic is more malleable and is lighter.

    Speaking of weight, the Light/EDC Ballistic of the BB and Halcyon of the A45 are the way to go when traipsing in airports.

    To protect your A45 in case you want or, have to check it, a Large Yeoman Duffle fits the A45 perfectly, both in Travel Ballistic and Halcyon.

    I wished the Large Yeoman Duffle was available when I traveled with my A45 in Halcyon, I placed the A45, on its side, just like in the picture, when I was waiting in line, it was great, but the airport floor, ewww and I was concerned about being forced to check it and suffer the grime and rough handling of the luggage conveyor belts.

  12. #12
    Volunteer Moderator tpnl's Avatar
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    Just to add to my comment about the BB having compression straps that can be cinched down to reduce the size of the BB, I took a few picture of my BB with the compression straps tightened.

    A45 vs. Brain Bag.-a45_bb_side_cinched-jpgA45 vs. Brain Bag.-a45_bb_top_cinched-jpg

    Now the BB and A45 are about the same thickness.

    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
    Forum Member GrussGott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BWeaves View Post
    Oh noes. Do you want to share what happened?
    Well nothing tragic (yet), but I had one of those days when my S25 just got consistently beat up and then I almost had to check my A45. I'll do a full check out once I get back but I did learn some things I think.

    (1.) @BWeaves is right. That's probably the most important lesson Stick Out Tongue

    (2.) In the states, halcyon is fine as travel is generally very predictable (at least for me it HAS been)

    (3.) International is a whole other game - the airline rules, the travel disruptions, etc are unpredictable enough that 1050 ballistic is the way to go. I'm thinking you'd still be safe with a halcyon WF and a lightly packed S25, but any larger and my new learning is ballistic.

  14. #14
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    Thanks everyone!!! I think I'll have to order one and do a test pack. Everyone's photos and comments were a great help.

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