The Camera Insert Update: Part 1 (no, you can’t see it yet)
We recently tested the up-and-coming Camera Insert on a trip to Zion and Bryce National Parks. In it, we carried a Canon 7D body, Canon 50mm f/1.4, 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5, and 70-200mm f/2.8L lenses, a Small Padded Organizer Pouch with memory cards, and a 3D Clear Organizer Cube containing a filter, battery charger, extra batteries, lens blower/brush, cleaning cloths, cleaning solution, and a remote shutter release cord.
Here’s what we carried inside of the Camera Insert. We aren’t ready to show
you the actual Camera Insert itself — yet.
The optional Tripod Bag will be available for purchase with, or separately from, the Camera Insert.
The Camera Insert fits perfectly inside either compartment of the Brain Bag, turning the Brain Bag into the ultimate laptop plus camera backpack. In addition to the Camera Insert, our Brain Bag fit a 15″ MacBook Pro inside of a Size 4Z Vertical Brain Cell, a Snake Charmer with various chargers, cables, and small accessories, an iPad in a Cache for iPad 2 (Vertical), our Gitzo travel tripod in its own protective sleeve (the sleeve will be an optional accessory for purchase with the Camera Insert and also available separately), a jacket, water bottle, plus the usual wallet, keys, etc. with more room to spare. It was a heavy load, but comfortable enough for several six mile hikes.
The Tripod Bag clips securely to the front of the Brain Bag.
What did we learn after testing the Camera Insert? That it’s close to perfect. Tom wants to use different materials here and there and tweak the padded handles, but otherwise, it will be ready for production as soon as we receive its molded foam parts designed by Tom and produced especially for us. Because the parts are a highly specialized lamination of foam and fabric, it may take up to 8-12 weeks to receive them. We’ll keep you posted; once we know when the parts will arrive at our Seattle factory, we will make the Camera Insert available for pre-order. There’s a chance some will ship before the end of the year, but we’re thinking January or February just to be safe.
The first size of Camera Insert is designed to fit the Brain Bag, Empire Builder, Super Ego, and Ego. It also fits in the middle compartment of the Tri-Star (though it will eat up some of the room of the compartments on either side of it), in the main compartment of the ID (it’s a tight fit, but it works as long as the Camera Insert isn’t overstuffed), and the main compartment of the Aeronaut.
Next Week: The Camera Insert Update: Part 2, where we take some hikes with the Camera Insert inside of the Brain Bag. You’ll see some beautiful photos that Darcy took in the Zion and Bryce Canyon backcountry, and you’ll get some straight talk from me about carrying 30+ pounds (14 kgs) of camera gear and more in a Brain Bag for two six mile (10 kilometers) hikes in high-desert sun and wind. — Tom
Being able to carry our camera gear comfortably, safely and securely encouraged us to take more photos of our trip.
Stay tuned for more next week.
New: Swift in Cardinal/Hemp, Forest/Hemp
Our Swift knitting bag is now available in two new color/fabric combinations: Cardinal/Hemp and Forest/Hemp. Both are in-stock and ready to ship within one business day.
Candi, who works with the single needle sewing machine in our Seattle factory, models the Cardinal/Hemp Swift.
Vulcana Hemp/Recycled Rubber is a material made in the U.S.A. from post-consumer recycled tires with a bonded overlay of sustainable hemp. This fabric – though with a look of delicacy due to fine strands of hemp standing out that one person likened to a raw silk look – is durable and extraordinarily unique. Paired with our custom 1050d U.S. ballistic nylon, it’s a striking combination.
June (Production Manager) and Lisa (Sewing Supervisor) model the Forest/Hemp Swift.
New (kind-of): Padded Pouch for Magic Mouse
The Padded Pouch for Magic Mouse will help protect your Apple Magic Mouse against bumps and drops. An interior of super-soft brushed tricot cradles your Magic Mouse and protects it against scratches; the #5 YKK coil zipper has a plastic slider instead of a metal one so your mouse doesn’t scratch on its way in or its way out.
The Padded Pouch for Magic Mouse is simply our Padded Organizer Pouch in size Mini, renamed to let Magic Mouse users discover it for this use — the Mini Padded Organizer Pouch turns out to be a perfect fit for Magic Mouse.
$9. Ships within one business day.
New: Ballistic Nylon Organizer Pouches
We make Organizer Pouches in Clear, Cordura, Padded, Cork, and Dyneema, so when gmanedit and others from the TOM BIHN Forums suggested that we make 1050d ballistic nylon Organizer Pouches, it made total sense. Ballistic Nylon Organizer Pouches are now available for pre-order and ship by mid-July. Choose from Mini (Cardinal), Small (Navy), Medium (Forest), and Pen/Pencil (Steel). In addition to adding extra organization to any bag, Ballistic Organizer Pouches are a great way to see small samples of our new Navy, Forest, and Cardinal 1050d ballistic nylon fabrics.
Introducing the Cache for Apple Wireless Keyboard
You asked, we listened, and it’s here: Tom has designed a size of Cache specifically to fit the Apple Wireless Keyboard. The Cache for Apple Wireless Keyboard is tapered to follow the wedge shape of the keyboard and provides a snug, secure fit for the keyboard. Its 1/4″ (6mm) thick foam padding, with an exterior of Black 4-ply Taslan, is lined with super-soft brushed tricot to cradle your keyboard. No noisy Velcro® or zipper; the Cache closes by simply tucking a generous flap into the top opening.
$30. Available for pre-order now; ships by mid-July.
Fits nicely inside of our Ristretto for iPad.
Tom Introduces Forest Green 1050d Ballistic Nylon
“In the summer of 1973, I hiked the West Coast Trail on the coast of Vancouver Island in British Columbia. I carried a backpack I had made for the trip — it was forest green, and I always thought it was the most perfect shade of green. That particular color will, in my mind, always be linked to that adventure, and is the inspiration for our new Forest Green 1050d ballistic nylon. Maybe our Aeronaut or Tri-Star in Forest Green will be a part of your next adventure.”
Available for pre-order in Forest:
Aeronaut in Forest/Steel or Forest/Ultraviolet
Tri-Star in Forest/Steel or Forest/Ultraviolet
ID in Black/Forest/Cayenne
Empire Builder Black/Forest/Steel
Super Ego in Black/Forest/Cayenne
Co-Pilot in Forest/Steel
Welcome Back, Storm 1000d Cordura
Introducing Cardinal Red 1050d ballistic nylon
This is the red of my dreams; the red I’ve quested after for years. It’s a deep red, rich and dark. A hint of black, and perhaps a bit of blue, distinguish our previous Crimson 1050d ballistic nylon from our new Cardinal 1050d ballistic nylon. Working with the dye works to create this color was no simple feat, and we rejected countless iterations of the new red before finally approving Cardinal two months ago.
After choosing our new color, we had several brainstorming sessions to come up with its name. Many would call it “Cherry” or “Stanford Red”. I thought it’d be funny to call it “Bolshevik Red” but more reasoned voices prevailed. Someone (we can’t remember who) suggested Cardinal, which is defined as a deep, vivid red. Perfect. And it’s the name of a train. Even better. (Our Empire Builder and Zephyr briefcases are also named after trains.)
In the process of choosing Cardinal, which is our fifth color of 1050d U.S. ballistic nylon, we came up with a sixth color that everyone agreed we couldn’t leave behind. We’ll be unveiling 1050d Ballistic Nylon Color #6 next Tuesday. Stay tuned!
Our previous red – Crimson – is on the left. Cardinal is on the right.
The Tri-Star in Cardinal/Steel.
Handles of the Cardinal Tri-Star cut and ready to sew.
The Kit in Cardinal, with a Vulcana Hemp/Recycled Rubber background.
A roll of the Cardinal 1050d ballistic nylon in the factory.
A close-up of the ballistic nylon yarns.