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  1. #1
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    Zip top shop bag question.

    The shop bag without the zip top could be folded into one of itss inside bottle pockets for easy storage.
    Can the zipper top shop bags do this same trick?

    Thanks
    Last edited by Kelly S; 09-20-2018 at 03:50 PM. Reason: grammar

  2. #2
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    That's an intriguing question! I just successfully folded my zip LSB into the inside pocket. But it doesn't lie as flat or neatly as the open top. But that could be due to my amateur execution of the trick.

  3. #3
    Forum Member pso78's Avatar
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    I also had this question about the zip top shop bag. If anyone has seen any videos on how to do this, please pass the link on. It would be very helpful. Thank you!
    My A-BIHN-GERS! = BRAIN BAG (French Blue/Steel) / CO-PILOT (Steel Dyneema/Solar) / TRI-STAR (Cardinal/Steel) / SYNAPSE 19 (Steel Dyneema/Solar) / WESTERN FLYER (Black Halcyon/Island) / AERONAUT 45 (Cardinal/Steel)

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kelly S View Post
    The shop bag without the zip top could be folded into one of itss inside bottle pockets for easy storage.
    Can the zipper top shop bags do this same trick?

    Thanks
    Hi @Kelly S,

    @twosandalz has already answered this. But I should say that even when I want to compact the Shop Bag, I don't usually end up folding it into its own pocket. I'll quote my comment in the Tom Bihn bags as art thread, where you can see many examples of folded and stored Shop Bags.

    Here are a few exceroted pictures supplied by @kkintea:
    Zip top shop bag question.-mu5aza3u-jpg
    Zip top shop bag question.-asetytat-jpg

    and by @dorayme:


    I wrote:

    @kkintea When I first ordered Shop Bags I used to try folding them up. I don't bother doing this any more, because they all get unfolded and used so often that it isn't worth trying to pack them away. The only one(s) that get packed away are the ones I keep stored in the right side pockets of my Synapses. And in these bags, to better fit the shape of the pocket, I first fold down the top by dropping the handles into the bag and making a fold below the "Portable Culture" or "Made in USA" label, and then I roll the bag up to store it.

    Quote Originally Posted by pso78 View Post
    I also had this question about the zip top shop bag. If anyone has seen any videos on how to do this, please pass the link on. It would be very helpful. Thank you!
    There's an old video that @maverick made showing how to fold the Shop Bag, where he demonstrated this for the original (small) Shop Bag using one of the few Sapphire Shop Bags that were made in November 2008:



    I find that I don't need to make use of this folding technique, and one of the main reasons that I might not want to fold the shop bag into its own pocket is that the end result is roughly square, where I often want to pack the Shop Bag into a pocket or an accessory with a different shape -- for example, in my Synapse, I usually carry a folded shop bag in the right front zippered pocket. Part of the reason for using that pocket is that, as @GEOcycle demonstrated in his 14 MAY 2012 Blog Post and his more detailed forum thread of the same name, Synapse continues to surprise., you could swing the bag down from your shoulder and unzip that pocket to pull out the Shop Bag. (I think it's easier to do this on the fly with the older zipper design, before they moved to the inverted zippers with larger teeth showing on the outside).

    You don't have to even fold the shop bags to carry them in these rectangular (or other shaped) pockets. For example, @Ilkyway shows an ultraviolet shop bag carried in the side pocket of her Grey/UV Synapse 25, just secured by a keystrap. I'll excerpt from a thread that is a reply to a question about the color of Ultraviolet Dyneema:

    Quote Originally Posted by moriond View Post
    Welcome to the forums @Duggy'sMom. I'm going to point you to some of @Ilkyway's pictures of items in Ultraviolet Dyneema, since I think these are some of the most color-accurate representations of the color in photos taken under a range of lighting conditions. Also, she uses Ultraviolet Cord Pulls on her bags, which are also close in color to Ultraviolet Dyneema:

    Take a look at the photos in the start of her Smart Alec versus Synapse 25 -> no endresult thread:

    The shop-bag in the side pocket of the Synapse 25 is darker and more shadowed on top, and lighter at the bottom. You can also see the (de-focused) UV Dyneema lining of the Grey/UV Synapse 25 in the background, and the cord pulls on the bag:


    Here's the same UV Shop Bag outside of the pocket, again with different amounts of incident lighting:

    (Aside: I also carry a Shop Bag in the same front side pocket of Synapse 25 or Synapse 19, but I just roll it and don't secure it with a keystrap).
    <snip> [other pictures of UV accessories such at the Spiff Kit shown in the Synapse 25 and Pilot not show]
    If you want to fold the Large Zip Top Shop Bag into its pocket, here's one way that I do it:

    1) Turn the Large Zip Top Shop Bag inside out, then rotate the bag so that the two end pockets are on the top and bottom. You want to flatten it by pushing the front and back panels together, so that you basically have the bag looking like this:
    Zip top shop bag question.-img_4089-jpg

    The profile you see is basically the edge-on view of the inverted Shop Bag, flattened down, with no excess from the front and back hanging out.

    2) Then, you basically invert the pocket at the front so that the rest of the Shop Bag is inside the pocket. The rest of the bag has already been neatly flattened into the right shape, and you can tuck the handles at the top into the pocket. It now looks like this:

    Zip top shop bag question.-img_4088-jpg

    HTH. Sorry for the delay in answering -- I started the reply a few weeks ago but was interrupted. I'll append some other examples of why I don't necessarily want to end up with a square, folded Shop Bag.

    moriond

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by twosandalz View Post
    That's an intriguing question! I just successfully folded my zip LSB into the inside pocket. But it doesn't lie as flat or neatly as the open top. But that could be due to my amateur execution of the trick.
    Does the zip bag have a good structure on its own if I leave it open.. and if I pack it *somewhat* (not entirely) unevenly, does it stand up ok for unpacking? Thanks!

  6. #6
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    if I pack it *somewhat* (not entirely) unevenly, does it stand up ok for unpacking?
    Yes but it depends on the item. Here's an example of uneven packing. I have a paperback, a vest and a size 2 TSS with yarn inside. It's collapsing into itself, but doesn't fall over entirely. Utilizing the size pockets is key. If I stand the book up in the back it'll fall over if I knock into it.

    But if I add my TC and a scarf it can handle the uneven weight, even when I add a tablet to the book. Basically, when it's half full it has decent structure to handle a lot

    Zip top shop bag question.-20181016_211032-collage-jpg

    As far as structure when left open, it's fine. The top part slouches down, which is a bit hard to see from these photos. But it'll still stand up.

    eta: This is the zip LSB. The zip SSB stand better with less inside.
    Last edited by twosandalz; 10-16-2018 at 07:36 PM.

  7. #7
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    Hi All,

    In a recent post with questions about the Packing Cube Backpack for A30, for carrying items at your destination, with an option to convert it to a shoulder bag mode for a minimalist carry in museums, I wrote

    Quote Originally Posted by moriond View Post
    Hi @bouncing,
    <snip>

    I'd actually suggest that @kathryn's suggestion, which combines using a Packing Cube Shoulder Bag, with a Daylight Backpack that can be packed into the PCSB, especially if you choose this as a Halcyon Daylight Backpack, could work for you -- you'd have a way to carry your laptop in the DLBP.

    However, I'll also note, as a nod to @Cristina's suggestion of the Large Shop Bag, that I recently spent two weeks in China and Europe (mixed personal travel and work), which included having to take formal wear (and an extra pair of shoes to go with this). I used the Side Kick (Black Halcyon/Island) for its organization, and although I had to bring a laptop (in my Synapse), I didn't carry it most of the time I was out. Instead, I carried the Large Zip Top Shop Bag folded up in a pocket of my rain jacket. This rain jacket was found from reading the forum discussion thread on Technical and/or fashionable packable rain jacket suggestions?, was on sale at Sierra Trading Post, and weighs 8.7 ounces. (I could fold it into the Side Kick, but, it wouldn't leave me a lot of room for accessories). It's actually pretty fitted when worn, but I found that I could fit a folded up Large Zip-Top Shop Bag in one pocket. The other pocket could hold a small folding umbrella (and a Kindle, if it wasn't being carried in my Side Kick). @kathryn can probably say that the end of August was pretty warm in Asia, and it was rainy when I was there. I generally had to do grocery shopping near the end of the day when I was in Europe (where it also had some rain), so it was very convenient. And I didn't need to check anything going into museums, etc.

    I may post pictures later if I get a chance.

    HTH

    moriond
    I thought that I'd document this comment about being able to put the Large Zip Top Shop Bag in the pocket of my rain jacket with some photos. First, the rain jacket was another instance of Non-TB items that were found from reading the forums. (There's a great 2014
    post by @kkintea on the subject of Non-TB Forum Enabling where she listed examples of useful items or practices discovered by reading TB forum threads. To be sure, many of these discussions covered ways to travel lighter, or how specific brands of items such as shoes, water bottles, stationary, wallets, toiletry products, glasses cases, etc. fit into, or could be packed into Tom Bihn gear.)

    In any case, I wanted to mention that when I was out and about in Europe and Asia at the end of summer, I was able to travel around with my Side Kick in Black 400d Halcyon/Island, and the recent Large Zip Top Shop Bag in Northwest Sky, folded into the pocket of my rain jacket. The main point of this post is that this may be a solution that works for other brands of light jackets, too; it's also an instance in which you don't need to try to fold the Shop Bag into its own pocket in order to carry it around.

    Here are the specs for my usage case -- they may not apply to you.

    • End of Summer generally warm, so apart from the issue of light packing for a 2-week trip, I wanted to use light-weight gear that was comfortable next to my skin in wet weather. (Europe has been unusually warm this summer. The parts of Asia I visited were also generally higher temperature and more humid than my home base of Honolulu, and there were passing typhoon showers. Both locations had spates of rain during my trip.)

    • For the work part of my trip (1 week in Europe, attending a conference), I was staying in an apartment with kitchen, so I needed to shop, sometimes near the end of the day. And, it's still true in a lot of places in Germany and Austria that grocery stores tend not to stay open very late -- nor do food market open stalls.

    • Museums, etc. can require that larger bags and umbrellas be checked.

    Just for background information, the Nau Lightbeam is a light-weight jacket that is made from recycled polyester that weighs 8.7 oz (247 gms) in the women's version. It's great to carry in changeable weather, where it's clear now, but might rain later, or vice versa. It's made of recycled polyester, and is water repellent and comfortable next to the skin. Good for light to moderate rain, but not made for heavy downpours. Zips closed, and has a hood that you can unfold from the collar. You can wear it as a wind breaker, or when in airconditioned areas. While it does well in warm climates, you can wear a merino jersey underneath for cooler weather. Here's the link to the Sierra Trading Post product page (also referenced in the forum discussion) and to a video showing the 2015 model depicted there:




    Zip top shop bag question.-img_4084-jpg
    This the Nau Lightbeam jacket (Women's medium, Caviar stripe), with a Large Zip Top Shop Bag (Northwest Sky) folded into the pocket at the right. For comparison, you can see the outline of a similar zippered pocket at the left, with a Kindle Paperwhite overlaid on it. The pocket with the shop bag does bulge a bit, but it's perfectly acceptable to wear. And, I can also carry a small umbrella in the pocket along with the Kindle Paperwhite.

    Zip top shop bag question.-img_4085-jpg
    A closeup of the pocket on the right side. I've unzipped it so you can see there really is a folded up Northwest Sky Large Zip Top Shop Bag inside.

    Zip top shop bag question.-img_4087-jpg
    Here's the Shop Bag pulled out, and lying on top of the pocket. Note that I didn't try to fold it into a square pocket, since that wouldn't have fit the shape of the pocket. I didn't actually take any particular pains for how I folded the bag.

    At the time I took those pictures, it had actually been raining, and my umbrella was in use elsewhere. I also retrieved the jacket from being stuffed into various bags, so it wan't a particularly neat shot.

    Zip top shop bag question.-img_4091-jpg
    Here's another quick fold of the same Large Zip Top Shop Bag in Northwest Sky, lying on top of the pocket (a different day)

    Zip top shop bag question.-img_4092-jpg
    Here's the folding umbrella I was carrying around in the other pocket, placed on top of the folded jacket pocket, and next to a Kindle Paperwhite. You can see that also fit into the pocket on the other side. (In most cases, the Kindle Paperwhite was carried in my Side Kick; however, when I wanted to stop and pull it out, the pocket could also be a convenient location.)

    This is not a ScotteVest solution for carrying several pounds of tech accessories -- I'm just saying that folding up the Shop Bag into the pocket of a light jacket worked perfectly well for me. I went to lots of museums with just my Side Kick, and never had to check either my umbrella or my folded Shop Bag. It was perfectly comfortable in rainy and warm weather. I didn't fold this into the square shape of the Shop Bag's own pocket.

    HTH

    moriond

    ETA: There was also a Men's version of the Nau Lightbeam sold up through 2015. This had similar features (two hand pockets, and rain hood in the collar), but also had an additional chest pocket.
    Last edited by moriond; 10-16-2018 at 10:43 PM.

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