Messenger bags – It's been a horrible evening

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  • Messenger bags – It's been a horrible evening
  • samuri
    Member

    Every ten years or thereabouts, I renew my North Face messenger bag. It doesn’t really need renewing but I generally choose to do this when it starts to get a bit tatty.

    So I have a look and THEY’VE STOPPED MAKING PROPER MESSENGER BAGS!!!

    Everyone else stopped making them years ago but now it seems even North Face have followed this appalling trend to keep with the groovy people who spend lots of money. What’s that about?

    Anyway, so I’d like a new messenger bag. Things it must have are as follows.

    Decent size. I don’t put a Macbook air and some sushi in mine. IBM laptop, full set of clothes, full set of tools and spares, butties, phones and some other stuff that I might have.

    Proper shoulder strap WITH stabilising strap. I ride a bike me, not walk about London with my headphones in. It’s got to stay in one place when I’m chasing down cars and leaving guys on 8 grand carbon lovelies.

    Numerous pockets.

    Reasonably waterproof. I live up North and ride every day

    Immortal. North face made bags that’d last ten years and more, I expect the same from the replacement.

    Black.

    Things I don’t need.

    Coolness. Couldn’t care less. It’s utilitarian, like me.

    Roly poly. It needs to be like a proper messenger bag, not a rolled up sleeping bag.

    Advice please.

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    Timbuk2
    Edit or patagonia half mass

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    cant recommend these guys enough

    http://www.courierwareusa.com/

    Ive been using one of theirs since 1995.
    Bit of an investment, but spec and build it on their site.

    MrSmith
    Member

    [Url]http://www.zyro.co.uk/products/detail/ABBST8600[/url]

    torsoinalake
    Member

    +1 for Timbuk2.

    I got mine in New York in about ’97 I reckon. Still going strong, apart from some of the trim that is fading due to exposure to the elements.

    Premier Icon bigblackshed
    Subscriber

    My Chrome Metropolis is everything you describe. They are just too hipster now.

    Bagaboo, Belk, Mission Workshop, BigXTop, PAC Designs. The ultimate would be a Black Rainbow Project (used to be Archie’s Grobags). Unfortunately they are like rocking horse do-do, sprinkled with unicorn horn and wrapped in mermaid placenta.

    samuri
    Member

    STW is great! So far the big Patagonia is meeting all requirements I think.

    Waist straps are awful when you’re cycling and quite a few suggestions so far are tiny. My laptop would fill those bags with nothing left over. Plus I usually have two carrier bags completely full of stuff.

    samuri
    Member

    Ooh, I like the Chrome Metropolis, that looks like a proper messenger bag.

    toby1
    Member

    From up North you say, then you’ll be needing a restrapper courier bag. You know it makes sense!

    brakes
    Member

    I have a Timbuk2 medium and can carry what you list above, but only just, and it makes the bag a bit teetery on your back so you might want a large.
    Mines only 2 years old but it is used and abused every day and in all weathers and still looks like new. Fully waterproof despite being ‘open’ at the top.
    Downsides are that you have to pack it right to get it to balance, the padding on the shoulder strap could be a bit thicker for when you’re fully laden with 10+kg of gear on your back.
    I’d also customize it a bit with a couple of extra loops and fastening points for a mesh bag and lights.

    I’m considering getting a large for overnight stays and shopping trips, but might get a Bagaboo for something different and they seem well priced.

    theflatboy
    Member

    Although clearly different to the Large Base Camp Messenger I’ve had for 10 years which sounds like what you’re used to, the latest incarnation actually still looks like a decent option.

    fodmtbguides
    Member

    I have Mission Workshop one, bombproof and waterproof, comfortable even on 30k rides

    Evoc Messenger bag?

    Premier Icon Teetosugars
    Subscriber

    I’ve Mission Workshop, PAC,Chrome, bugaboo, Timbuk2, all of which I can bring in and yer welcome to try mate..

    tekp2
    Member

    My Timbuk2 has been pretty good and you can fit a ridiculous amount of stuff in it. One of the velcro patches has fallen off after about 5 years, but it’s still going strong otherwise. Alternatively, the Patagonia ones look good.

    samuri
    Member

    I think we might be able to combine a messenger bag testing/beer delivery engagement, Nick. Thanks. Once this brew is ready I’ll bottle some up and get in touch.

    Premier Icon gary
    Subscriber

    Medium timbuk2 here – about 16 years old I think and daily commuting for at least 10 of those. Still waterproof based on todays ride.

    The medium one would probably be a tight squeeze for what you listed though I’ve been known to strap forks and all sorts to mine to ride home.

    There is a group test in issue 30 of the magazine if you have a pile of them in a corner somewhere – has a lot of the bags mentioned above in it.

    spacemonkey
    Member

    Crumpler Cheesy Disco here. Lovely piece of kit. Stabilising strap, loads of compartments, light but strangely rigid and hardy. RRP used to be something like £120 but I picked mine up (not even used) off someone on here for a bargain.

    Not sure how it would stand up to incessant rain oop north though!

    FeeFoo
    Member

    I got my Timbuk2 in 1990 and it’s still going strong today. Built to last.
    (That includes being used for its actual purpose for its first five years too!)

    Premier Icon Teetosugars
    Subscriber

    That sounds like a great plan Jon.. Just sing out when it’s all ready.

    gdj001
    Member

    DHB from wiggle, big and cheap and also has a rain cover attached at the bottom

    DHB

    brakes
    Member

    it’s 18L, that’s about half the size he needs.
    those Patagonias seemed to be well specced but I can’t get past looks of them. nasty.

    Premier Icon zbonty
    Subscriber

    I had a large Timbuk2 one that i was pleased with for years, but ultimately fell apart.

    Replaced by the STW logo’d Pac Designs large one. I think they made about four or so and its a great bit of kit.
    Way more solid/overbuilt than the Timbuk2. Comfy, stable, massive, adjustable. A great bit of kit.
    Possibly encouraged me to carry too much wight on my back though. Now using panniers daily due to knackered back!

    tinybits
    Member

    Very happy withy large north face black 17″ one I’ve got. Goes most places with me, I reckon I could fill it with enough for a week away at a push.

    Edit, like this but the large:

    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/the-north-face-base-camp-messenger-bag-medium/

    chewkw
    Member

    gdj001 – Member

    DHB from wiggle, big and cheap and also has a rain cover attached at the bottom

    DHB

    I think I am going to buy one of this because it comes with inner zip pocket.

    CountZero
    Member

    Mission Workshop bags. They set up Chrome originally, then sold it to concentrate on more unconventional designs.
    The roll-top design will keep out just about anything apart from total immersion, I think, and the strap adjuster is simple and very easily adjusted. Very solid bags, I just can’t really justify the expense.
    Or that’s what I keep telling myself…
    The Rummy

    gsm7
    Member

    Timbuk2 messenger bag large. Had mine for 6-7 years, I use it pretty much everyday for commuting, training and generally just keeping stuff dry. Really impressed with the quality and expect it will last as long again…

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    All the messengers I see use those Ortlieb rolltop backpacks.

    mudmonster
    Member

    I used an Ortlieb for a while. Just like a big sack really, although you can get a clip on organiser. I like my pak bag a lot but they are expensive but built to last.

    TooTall
    Member

    Ortlieb Pro Messenger Bag. Large capacity, proper shoulder straps for BOTH shoulders and tougher than the olde bootes.

    Premier Icon matthewjb
    Subscriber

    I’d avoid the North Face ones. I use one for work and it’s falling apart after about 2 year’s use.

    Rscott
    Member

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/osprey-flap-jack-courier-bag-2013/rp-prod76723?_$ja=tsid:46412|cgn:Osprey+-+Bags|cn:Chain+Reaction-UK-PLA-PLA-All-DT-SE|kw:296250UK_Osprey+Flap+Jack+Courier+Bag+2013&gclid=CIuT3PC20boCFZMdtAodrB8AGw

    Had one for 6 years used daily by me or my missis and it stilllooks new once wipped down and cleaned,

    I can fit my 17inch laptopin my work clothes lunch and dinner tools. and stillspace for more.

    user-removed
    Member

    I’m amazed that no one mentioned Ortlieb until Molgrips towards the end of page one.

    I used one for courier duties for two years through two filthy Aberdeen winters. None of the contents ever got wet, mine was white so very visible and when I gave up killing myself for peanuts, I sold it for the same as I paid for it 😀

    And if needed, the roll top could be unrolled to make it massive – if I was just carrying court documents, it rolled down to the size of a smallish Crumpler.

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