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Old 03-18-2012, 12:53 AM   #31
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Location: Washington DC area
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Briggs & Riley

Nice bags, with several sizes, and a great guarantee: fix or replace forever.
I travel a LOT for work, sometimes for two or three weeks, and must take both business and casual clothes. My curren suitcase has lasted several years longer than previous ones (from LL Bean and Lands End).

If I was looking for a "one bag" solution for a vacation, I'd be looking at Red Oxx or Tom Bihn.

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Old 03-18-2012, 11:21 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by BeachMoto View Post
I have a few pilot friends and they swear by Purdy Neat bags by

From what one of my pilot buddies was telling me, the Costco house brand 22" rolling bag gives the Purdy Neat bag run for its money.
So, what Purdy offers that TravelPro used to offer to pilots & airline folks was a metal chassis. pretty rugged.
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Old 03-18-2012, 12:25 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by Beamklamp View Post
That would be check-IN.

I've already got what I need for travelling light.

But I am not about to CARRY enough COLD WEATHER gear for a winter in North Dakota or equipment to spend a year stationed abroad.

Oh, and thanks for the responses, ideas, and input.
Winter clothes, adn a year's worth of crap...that sounds like a lot of crap. I hope you're not taking a commercial flight, or they'll ring you up on those ridiculous weight charges.

So, like previously mentioned, decide how you're rolling. If you're venturing off into an unpaved world 90% of the time you're using it, the bottom line is that you might be better off paying attention to whether your luggage offers you a carrying option that enables the mobility you need to get where you're going. Does it offer a legitimate suspension system to keep the weight on your hips, & off your shoulders, etc. You're not talking about luggage nearly as much as you're talking about backpacks, or a hybrid thereof. Personally speaking, I've never found any players who offer hybrid products to get the combination quite right. Eagle Creek and Victorinox Swiss Army gets close, but infallibly I wish for tougher fabrics on the check-in sized offerings. And most of the time the suspension is a joke, forcing an odd fit, or all of the weight onto shoulders. Not ideal. Any advice in this area isn't a one-size-fits-all statement either, because like backpacks...what works for a 5-6" beanpole guy might be absolutely lousy for a 6'4" dude with a gut.

But if you're like the majority of folks, travel for you means going from driveway to car, & from parking deck to the check-in counter; from baggage claim to taxi, & taxi to hotel room, with maybe a smattering of sidewalk here or there to get you by. If that's the honest truth...welcome to the world of wheeled luggage.

For check-in luggage, you have to choose between two evils. do you want something soft-sided--ideally ballistic nylon-ish, or hardsided polycarbonite-ish? Softsided gear fails fairly gracefully, but really gets scuffed up in the process, & starts to look like crap much much earlier than its carry-on counterparts & hardside alternatives. My carry-on stuff looks way way better than my check-in gear, and has many many more miles logged on it. It's just the nature of the environment. Hardsided stuff holds up better to the scuffs & scrapes & does a better job protecting crap inside...but fails pretty catastrophically when it does give up the ghost. Pick your poison. Or look for softsided models that feature well-placed hard wear points. If you go soft-sided, keep in mind: scuffs rarely come in any variety other than black.

For check-in luggage...IMO, stay away from any wheeled arrangements that is even remotely delicate. Four puny spin-around wheels might sound awesome to you bcs you imagine yourself strolling around with all 120lbs of winter gear and a year's worth of equipment supported by 4 wheels. But the truth is that 4 wheels only behaves well in the most controlled of circumstances. The tinier they are, the more madly they spin to keep up with you, and any fouling of the bearings will be that much more noticeable . And god forbid some handler smashes a chest down on one of the four wheels; then you just look & act retarded. The top-tier players will always always repair crap like that for free, but really--is it worth the hassle? Well shrouded & concealed two-wheel arrangements is the best, imo, if you're going to have wheels.

Two-wheeled arrangements: when stood on end with the handle up, wider across and shorter up & down is more stable. Narrow & tall forces you to hold up more weight with your own arm strength. Btw, there's a bit of a science to it, balancing things out so that you don't actually have to hold anything up. It's the reason why you always see pilots & airline attendents with at least two bags...the bag with the handle, and a bag hooked over the back of it. If you're doing it right, you're literally not holding *anything*'re actually probably pushing down a bit with the weight of your arm. Don't overstuff the piece with the handle. If it gets rounded that 2nd piece keeps falling off, & you'll be the person everyone's looking at bcs you don't have your shit together.

Shopping by brand is easy. But you're gonna pay through the nose for Tumi / B&R / Hartmann. If you're trying to save dough, then pay attention to dernier ratings, & the thickness of zipper coils, & location of hardpoints.

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Old 03-18-2012, 08:01 PM   #34
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The key to non-wheeled luggage travel.... to pack extremely light. Check out the One Bag website I linked to in my first post. The idea with a shoulder bag with no wheels is that it IS light in weight. Most folks pack way too much and carry way too much.

I understand the theory that airports are flat and wheeled luggage is ideal in that environment. If you use high tech, wicking underwear, carry only a few pair and wash them and re-use them during your trip, you will be shocked at how lightly you can pack.

Even in an airport environment, I am soooooo much more nimble and maneuverable with my Red Oxx Air Boss than everybody else pulling a rolling bag behind them.

It requires an open mind to pack light enough to make the one shoulder bag concept work, It's not about schlepping a huge, heavy bag on your back. It is a philosophy of packing light, being very nimble, and giving yourself the freedom to jump on any plane, train, or automobile at a moment's notice and never being trapped by a lost checked bag, or not make a connection because your bag isn't with you.

It is a discipline that requires commitment to the philosophy of packing light and enjoying the freedom that never checking a bag, and always being able to go anywhere without restrictions instantly.

If you choose not to commit to this philosophy, and decide you must pack all that stuff and tow it around with wheeled luggage, that's fine, variety is the spice of life.

Try one trip with one shoulder bag that you carry on. You will be shocked and how much more relaxed you are and how much more quickly you get around the airport, on and off the plane, and into the cab.

Try it.


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Old 03-18-2012, 09:29 PM   #35
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Btw, road warriors never check luggage. It's all about getting to the plane just early enough to snag overhead, sitting close to the front so you get off the plane fast and avoiding the baggage carousel.
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Old 03-18-2012, 10:13 PM   #36
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I don't check luggage. Well in 25 years of active travel I've checked bags about five times it's normally whenim hauling things like my snowboard or bicycle. If I'm going to be some place for a while. I ship stuff there and back.

That said here's mu suggestions for travel bags

Here's what I've learned the hard way over the years with a mix of work, adventure and just plain travel
Soft sided roll aboard in any color other then black
I rarely used the back back function but when I did it as great.
Replaceable wheels and bearings are a good thing
A handle that you can raise one handed is a good thing
Big empty space that you can fill the way you like to is a good thing
Compression straps inside work better and don't get hung up like compression straps on the outside.

I use and I'm waiting for my eagle creek convertible bag to die. It won't it suffers from a few minor things that bug me but overall it's been a fantastic bag for the last 18 years of about five to twenty trips per year.
Including being tossed around third world countries

I long ago pitched the rucksack that came with it. I can pack two weeks of clothes in it and it fits the over of even the smallest Regional jets
On vacation for a spell
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Old 03-18-2012, 10:18 PM   #37
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REI Beast series and / or Osprey Shuttle series of wheeled (bad ass wheels) luggage.

European roads are sometimes cobbled so rolling through town isn't always fun, so convertible luggage is always nice but not often needed. Both REI and Osprey also have convertible / backpackable models as well in 22 and 25/28 (carry-on airline dependent) and I actually prefer these to rollers. You can pick up and move quickly w/o dealing w/wheels.

Ive used both series and actually own all REI Beast bags 22-38" and they are indestructible. A bit cheaper than Eagle Creek which is awesome as well. REI also has a no shite/ no questions asked return policy that beats the manufacturers policy, so whatever you buy from them, bring it back in flames and they will exchange/refund it.

The goal is to carryon and and never check baggage. The soft luggage 22-28" allows you pack a lot in and still compress (just remember wheels out). Most airlines are becoming sticklers on the 25 and 28" bags laying sideway and requiring them to be placed handles in towards bulkhead so some of us cheaters have to follow the rules. A completely soft bag will still allow you to get away w/more storage. One with a zip off backpack makes everything easier, esp if you have to sling both to get up stairs, ect.

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Old 03-19-2012, 04:11 AM   #38
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Anything by Samsonite with a hard shell; they do eventually break, but the cost:number of miles travelled before they do is better than anything else I've come across. A lot of airline professionals favour them for their own luggage and they should know.

If you only need check-in one way, take a Skypak collapsible holdall and fold it into your carry on luggage when not in use (I did this again only yesterday).
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Old 03-19-2012, 04:25 AM   #39
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If I need a stable, robust and nice looking luggage, then I would only trust RIMOWA. Their alu lines (Topas, Pilot and Attache) are really excellent, 100% made in Germany. Yes they have also the "polycarbonate" lines which should be also indestructable, but I myself dont like plastics...
No, Samsonite is by no mean near the Rimowa...

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Old 03-20-2012, 07:41 PM   #40
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Good people,

Thanks for the responses.

I've used one of the Elite bags from Purdy Neat for some time. They're extremely durable and pack a lot of room for a carry-on. Airline people seem to respect them because the crews use them.

I'll prolly get an REI rolling duffel (I'm thinking warranty here) for moving the SWMBO's crap for resort type vacations. She can use the Purdey Neat bag for overseas trips.

Now about that RED OXX. Me likey for single excursions. Must save a few more nickels and it will be mine.........oh yes. Perhaps an equipment report in the near future.
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Old 03-21-2012, 02:27 AM   #41
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+1 on Briggs & Riley. They will fix anything forever - Tumi has the same but for ONE YEAR - BTW, craigslist isn't a bad place to check for high end luggage since it seems to get low use and depreciate quickly.
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Old 03-21-2012, 05:52 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by sanjaya_sugiarto View Post
If I need a stable, robust and nice looking luggage, then I would only trust RIMOWA. Their alu lines (Topas, Pilot and Attache) are really excellent, 100% made in Germany. Yes they have also the "polycarbonate" lines which should be also indestructable, but I myself dont like plastics...
No, Samsonite is by no mean near the Rimowa...

Those aluminum Rimowas kick *ass*! I'd totally rock one for a carry-on.

But this is what I mean wrt "stay away from any wheel that is even remotely delicate."

They've got a fixed-wheel version (that doesn't spin around) that I would totally go for. But these spinners...I'd only go for on a carry-on. It's just not worth the hassle with a check-in piece, imo.
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Old 03-21-2012, 06:27 AM   #43
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Costco sells some nice luggage. I have a few kirkland suitcases and they are high quality for a fair price.
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Old 07-08-2012, 09:46 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by sanjaya_sugiarto View Post
No, Samsonite is by no mean near the Rimowa...
Ok, but what does a 118 litre version of theirs weigh? I'm guessing faar more than 5kgs. When they get knocked around, all that anodising gets scratched. When they get dropped, they can dent. PP (polypropylene) "hard" cases flex when they get abused and the flexing absorbs energy. When the PP becomes scratched, its still just the same colour!

Samsonite hard rollers (never spinners) for me - easy to modify and repair as well - extra locks, add more wheels. Low profile so doesn't scream "steal me". Then again, what is best for one is not for another.
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Old 07-08-2012, 11:07 AM   #45
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Just bought two Samsonite bags @ their outlet in Stratford, Ontario. Knowledgeable staff, great prices as leftovers from their Canada Day Clearance Event, they have other events I'm told. Worth a stop if you're in the area (London, Kitchener/Waterloo) or passing through (Toronto to Detroit). I bought my last roller bag there maybe 8-10 years ago.

I also got the impression from their repair manager guy that if I caught him on a good day ("Not a Monday.") that I might get a replacement bag for my big old roller bag on which the zippers have lost a few teeth and are becoming scarry. Repair cost on zippers is $3 per INCH so they pretty quickly reach the point where "Just pick a new bag." becomes the answer. Was also told the tip to photocopy the original receipt, unzip the inner lining and put a copy in each bag. Makes finding the receipt in 8-10 years much easier I'm told.
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