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Old 07-30-07, 08:49 PM   #1
Markok765
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Problems with messanger bag, help please!

Hey! I'm trying out my Samsonite messenger/laptop bag, and I find it uncomfortable. It keeps shifting from side to side, and almost falls off when i drop into a bowl/off a jump. I also find it doesn't protect my equipment during falls [slr system.] I'm currently using a LowePro Micro Trekker 200 with my Telephoto lens removed to make room for water. I also now use a backpack [non-photo] for when I'm not at the skate park, shooting BMXers.

So, why should I use a messenger bag VS a backpack? The backpack can hold more, and looks better.

Please help!
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Old 07-30-07, 09:08 PM   #2
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So, why should I use a messenger bag VS a backpack? The backpack can hold more, and looks better.
Sounds like you should use a backpack then. Whatever works for you. However, I don't know if samsonite makes REAL messenger bags. A lot of messenger bags now are just called that because they're single straps and dangle at your side. Try one specifically made for messengers (like Chrome or PAC or whatever, there's a big thread about it here: Messenger Bags )

But if a backpack works better for you, use a backpack. Why switch?
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Old 07-30-07, 09:19 PM   #3
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get a PELICAN case, and get the backpack straps for it. You can drop your gear onto pavement, into water and it will be protected! you can customise the foam interior to hold all your lenses, batteries, camera body etc.

www.pelican.com
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Old 07-30-07, 09:28 PM   #4
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get a PELICAN case, and get the backpack straps for it. You can drop your gear onto pavement, into water and it will be protected! you can customise the foam interior to hold all your lenses, batteries, camera body etc.

www.pelican.com
Pelican cases are a bit too big for me. If I want that protection, I'll get a waterproof lowepro backpack. Plus, its more ergonomic, which helps with 16LB of gear on a 5 hour bike trip.

Whats the difference between a single strap, and a real messenger bag?
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Old 07-30-07, 09:39 PM   #5
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Whats the difference between a single strap, and a real messenger bag?
One's a man purse, the other is a messenger bag. Real messenger bags are designed to stay on your back, in my opinion.
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Old 07-30-07, 11:35 PM   #6
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Whats the difference between a single strap, and a real messenger bag?
One has a stabilizer strap to keep it in place, the other does not. Without a proper way to secure the bag, it won't stay put. Also, if the main strap is too loose, it will flop around more. I wear my main strap so tight I can't get it over my helmet without loosening it. Another feature of a proper messenger bag is a main strap that is super easy to loosen and tighten. If your bag does not have these two features, it won't work well on a bike.
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Old 07-31-07, 06:52 AM   #7
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On the left is a Jack Spade "man purse" messenger bag. On the right is a Chrome Citizen messenger bag. The one on the right is easy to cinch (pull on the strap), has better shoulder support, and has the little connectors for a stablizer.
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Old 07-31-07, 08:22 AM   #8
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Can someone explain clearly how those stabilizer straps are supposed to work? I would prefer a messenger bag for the ability to get to things without having to disrobe. But when I've looked at the supposed "real" bags with stabilizers, and tried them in the stores, I haven't found that the extra strap does anything.
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Old 07-31-07, 08:32 AM   #9
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The stabilizer usually goes under your arm, creating an upside-down, tilted Y out of the main strap and the stabilizer. This keeps the bag from shifting around. If it's not doing anything for you, the stabilizer and/or main strap probably aren't adjusted tight enough.
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Old 07-31-07, 11:56 AM   #10
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http://www.timbuk2.com/tb2/cms/popup/howToWear.htm

The girl isn't tightening the straps down as far as they should be,but that's prolly so you can see what she's doing.

Also,Courierware makes camera-specific bags and inserts.
http://www.courierwareusa.com/level.itml/icOid/20
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Old 07-31-07, 12:07 PM   #11
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what they are calling a stabilizer strap is a sternum strap. it goes under your armpit on the high side of the bag across your sternum. i hope that helps, but thats the stap you need to keep the bag from swinging. look under my right armpit thats the sternum strap. the carabiner on the clip lets you loosen the strap one handed thats a trick i picked up somewhere

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Old 07-31-07, 05:52 PM   #12
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I notice a distinct weight limit for my bag. Past a certain point it won't stay put very well and gets uncomfortable. With my usual load of a change of clothes, sandals, glasses, wallet I have no trouble at all. The stabilizer strap seems a joke! Right length on the shoulder strap appears totally key.
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Old 08-01-07, 10:43 AM   #13
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mandovoodoo: what bag? I've loaded my Bailey to max capacity(and clipped a plastic bag to the outside) without it moving an inch.
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Old 08-01-07, 10:56 AM   #14
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Really the main advantage to a messenger bag (as apposed to a messenger style bag) is their easy accessability. You put stuff in, and get stuff out of it without having to take it off. They can't carry as much as a normal backpack because they only have a single strap. As a matter of fact a lot of couriers now opt for the double strap backpack due to the comfort and extra carrying capacity.
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Old 08-02-07, 05:08 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gharding View Post
One's a man purse, the other is a messenger bag. Real messenger bags are designed to stay on your back, in my opinion.
QFT

Try Chrome, Reload, Crumpler... Timbuk2's quality IMO is not what it used to be. Reload can custom make pretty much anything your little heart desires.
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Old 08-03-07, 04:31 AM   #16
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...They can't carry as much as a normal backpack because they only have a single strap. As a matter of fact a lot of couriers now opt for the double strap backpack due to the comfort and extra carrying capacity.
Not too sure about this. Large backpacks can not really be used when riding, most messenger bags are alot bigger than most riding rucksacks. I do know that the PAC bags have sizes which are 3600 cubic inches that is nearlt 60 L far bigger than most backpacks that is sutible for riding. If you have to carry alot of heavy items in a messenger bag consider one like the PAC one which have a seconadary shoulder strap so you end up with an x of straps. I personaly use a small backpack most of the time and if that works for you and what you do it would probibly be better, I use a large customized royal mail postie bag with lots of extra straps for big things. Also if I am riding mbt off road or BMX I always have a rucksack over a shoulder bag but again that it just me.
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Old 08-03-07, 05:52 AM   #17
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I notice a distinct weight limit for my bag. Past a certain point it won't stay put very well and gets uncomfortable. With my usual load of a change of clothes, sandals, glasses, wallet I have no trouble at all. The stabilizer strap seems a joke! Right length on the shoulder strap appears totally key.
It depends on how it's loaded. Heavier objects should not go towards the bottom of the bag, but towards the 'downward pointing" side when worn.

I also found my bag stays put better if it's at the right height...too high and it is uncomfortable, too low and it flops around everywhere. For me, the lowest point of it should be at the bottom edge of my belt (I wear my jeans around my hips)....that's the right height for me.

You are right about the shoulder strap, but that sternum strap is crucial once you are overloading or hauling heavy loads with it. I've bought paintings and rode home with them in the bag (had to use twine to tie the flap shut), carried 2-1/2 cases of beer in it, a stereo reciever I just bought, etc....and in those cases that strap is a serious benefit.
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Old 07-21-08, 03:54 PM   #18
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Update: I bought a Chrome Metro bag.

It's a great bag, but a little small sometimes [ie. Couldn't carry my turntable home in/strapped onto it.]
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Old 07-21-08, 04:48 PM   #19
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Update: I bought a Chrome Metro bag.

It's a great bag, but a little small sometimes [ie. Couldn't carry my turntable home in/strapped onto it.]
I cannot carry my fridge in it either.

Dude ... take a cab sometimes.
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Old 07-21-08, 04:54 PM   #20
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I cannot carry my fridge in it either.

Dude ... take a cab sometimes.
But a turntable isn't that big! I could have gotten it home by bike if I had some ties or that stretchy rope thing with a hook on the end of it.
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Old 07-21-08, 05:05 PM   #21
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I cannot carry my fridge in it either.

Dude ... take a cab sometimes.
While you could fit one of those little dorm fridges in the largest messenger bags, it would be incredibly uncomfortable even with a system like Pac's X-strap and waist belt.

The more important question is in regards to the best thing to put in a fridge: how much beer will it hold?
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Old 07-21-08, 05:08 PM   #22
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While you could fit one of those little dorm fridges in the largest messenger bags, it would be incredibly uncomfortable even with a system like Pac's X-strap and waist belt.

The more important question is in regards to the best thing to put in a fridge: how much beer will it hold?
Panniers are better for that.

The turntable would be terrible for listening to music on the bike.
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Old 07-21-08, 05:23 PM   #23
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The turntable would be terrible for listening to music on the bike.
Nah, just get one of these.



Has a vastly superior and much warmer sound than any CD or DMP. Just be sure to get the audio enhancing rosewood knobs on the player and use your Mahongany Grado RS1s.

Last edited by vaticdart; 07-21-08 at 05:26 PM. Reason: Spelling.
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Old 07-21-08, 06:00 PM   #24
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Hey! I'm trying out my Samsonite messenger/laptop bag, and I find it uncomfortable. It keeps shifting from side to side, and almost falls off when i drop into a bowl/off a jump. I also find it doesn't protect my equipment during falls [slr system.] I'm currently using a LowePro Micro Trekker 200 with my Telephoto lens removed to make room for water. I also now use a backpack [non-photo] for when I'm not at the skate park, shooting BMXers.
So, why should I use a messenger bag VS a backpack? The backpack can hold more, and looks better.
Please help!
Well.... a backpack usually can comfortably hold more. There are some cavernous messenger bags out there, but if you put heavy gear in them they won't be as comfortable as a backpack in my opinion. The advantage of a messenger bag is that they make your gear more easily accessible. You have to remove a backpack to get to the contents. With a messenger bag you just release the stabilizer strap buckle and swing it around to the front. You don't even need to get off a bike.

I actually have a messenger bag for camera gear. It's a Crumpler Soup n Salad with the "Bucket" insert. The Bucket is just your standard photo padding with dividers that you can re-arrange and add/remove as needed thanks to the miracle of velcro. The downside is that it's an expensive set since the bag and the insert are sold separately. The other downside is that the bucket takes up a lot of room. With thinner padding you could fit more. The upside is that the Soup n Salad is a nice messenger bag on its own, and the Bucket is a heavily padded photo insert that you can put into any larger bag or backpack. The bucket is seriously padded, for better or worse. I've never had a problem with it swinging around or coming loose as long as I tighten the straps.

I can carry my Nikon D200 with 17-55mm f/2.8 mounted, and an 80-200mm f/2.8 in the compartment next to that with room for an SB-800 as well. That's a really heavy kit for a messenger bag though, so I usually carry smaller primes instead of the f/2.8 zooms. I think I'd prefer a backpack for the heavier kit... and I have carried the Bucket in a standard backpack.

Sean
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Old 07-21-08, 06:04 PM   #25
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Panniers are better for that.

The turntable would be terrible for listening to music on the bike.
I was trying to transport it somewhere.

I find my courier bag is way more comfortable with large loads vs a backpack!
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