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Thread started 31 Aug 2010 (Tuesday) 16:41
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My new Tenba Insert w/generic bag solution

 
cptrios
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Aug 31, 2010 16:41 |  #1

Hey all,

So last year I bought a 3-compartment Tenba insert to stick in an older, larger version of one of these: http://www.llbean.com …ory=845&feat=84​5-tn&cat4= (external link) (and hey, the smaller version looks like it may work for this purpose too, if you like the look). It works FANTASTICALLY as a bag for taking things from place to place; it holds everything listed below PLUS a 15" Macbook Pro, its charger, another iPod, two portable HDs, batteries, a cell phone+charger, and a bunch of other stuff. Basically my entire electronic life. But it is waaaay too big and bulky for use as a day photo bag. So I've been rather shamefully using a terrible little nylon messenger bag with no padding or inserts of any kind whenever I've needed to cart my camera around for a day.

So I started searching for a suitable day bag, with the criteria being that it doesn't look like a photo bag and that it fits the Tenba insert snugly for smallness' sake. I finally found one here: http://www.e-corporategifts.com …iendly_Messenge​r_Bag.html (external link). The same bag is available on a lot of "corporate gift" sites, but this is the only one that'll sell one at a time (not that I searched particularly thoroughly). So here it is:

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It's nice and canvassy, and doesn't look at all like it's meant for expensive equipment.

Here's a shot of it with the insert inside. You can see that it doesn't fit perfectly...but when the insert is filled, the sides push out to accommodate whatever you need (within reason).
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And here's what goes in it (give or take) for day-bag use.
1. Mini tripod
2. Stand-in for a Sunpak 383 (real one's on the XSi taking the picture)
3. Stand-in for my Magic Drainpipe (real one's in the shop)
4. Sigmalux
5. 5d2 with Sigma 24-70mm f/2.8
6. iPod with headphones
7. Lenspen
8. Kindle w/case (goes in the back pocket)
9. A CF card pouch that I can't find at the moment.
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And here's what it looks like with all of that inside. You can see that the top becomes a bit "squarish" and detracts a bit from the whole 'incognito' thing. But it still doesn't look like it's got a camera in it.
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And finally here's what it looks like when used for transport purposes. This means that it's holding everything listed above PLUS an Acer Aspire One netbook, its charger and cables, a CF card reader, and the iPod charger. I could probably squeeze the Kindle charger in there too, but the things last like 2 weeks on one charge. Here you'll notice that It's definitely in "overstuffed" territory, and I'm going to have to sew in some new velcro strips a bit higher up if I want to close it like this. But it still does the job.
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So, in conclusion:

Pros:
• Relatively cheap
• Canvas doesn't scream "there's a camera in here"
• Pretty much perfectly sized for day use with the insert (this is the big 'pro')
• Eco-friendly! (whatever that means)
• I haven't put it through too much stress but it seems pretty rugged
• There are several little pockets that'd be useful for cards/documents/etc

Cons:
• When you need to bring more stuff for, say, a trip, the size limitations creep up
• It doesn't seem waterproof at all. Even if the material were waterproof, the zippered flap that covers the interior is open at the sides. I might consider lining it with something to make it a bit more rain-safe. (I'll update you with how that goes)
• I'm 6' tall and on the husky side, and the shoulder-strap is juuuuust a bit too short for me. If you're of a similar size and are overly worried about hearing the phrase "man purse," you may want to get a longer strap.
• I think I'd prefer to have buckle closure over velcro...but it's easy to sew on a couple of buckles.

So there you go! I hope someone finds this useful!

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Jon
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Aug 31, 2010 17:25 |  #2

Which insert is that? Doesn't look like any of the Domke inserts I've seen, with the "ears" that fold over . . .


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PAYPAL GIFT NO LONGER ALLOWED HERE

  
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cptrios
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Aug 31, 2010 17:33 |  #3

Aaaah! Sorry it's a Tenba insert! I bought a Domke one at the same time (that was ridiculously small and thus forgotten).

http://www.bhphotovide​o.com …ro_Digital_2_0_​Photo.html (external link)

Mods, please change the title accordingly if you can!


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Jon
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Aug 31, 2010 19:25 |  #4

Wondered if it might be - title changed.


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2mnycars
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Aug 31, 2010 20:17 |  #5

Congratulations! Put a Domke postal pad on it and it'll be even better. (Transformed my Domke bags to things of beauty--functionally anyway. ;) )


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c2thew
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Aug 31, 2010 22:03 |  #6

If you read the reviews on the postal pad, it says that it falls apart after awhile.


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Jon
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Sep 01, 2010 15:15 |  #7

Nothing a little contact cement won't take care of. And "a while" in my experience has been longer than most people keep any non-Domke bag.


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cptrios
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Sep 01, 2010 15:49 |  #8

Jon wrote in post #10831299 (external link)
Nothing a little contact cement won't take care of. And "a while" in my experience has been longer than most people keep any non-Domke bag.

Are you suggesting that this $30 corporate gift bag isn't going to last 50 years?? Heresy!


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Sep 01, 2010 16:21 |  #9

It may last 50 years - but will you still be using it?


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cptrios
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Sep 01, 2010 17:04 |  #10

I think it's a perfect size for a colostomy bag!


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My new Tenba Insert w/generic bag solution
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