Before I left to England I wrote a quick post about the thinkTank Streetwalker Rolling Backpack V2.0. As promised here is a quick video showing some of the features of the bag and why I used it on my trip. If you would like to learn more about the bag, especially the dimension of the bag, you can click here
I got a new bag in the office! I’m actually quite excited. This is the Thinktank Streetwalker Rolling Backpack V2.0, part of Thinktank’s Streetwalker series. It’s to be versatile as a roller and a backpack. The shoulder straps fold up into the back and sealed in a zipper compartment. It’s pretty slick. It’s designed to be a smaller bag for travel. Much thinner and not nearly as wide as the Airport Security V3.0, about the same in height when standing up but still very durable. On my next trip to England I plan on taking this bag since I’m going with a much lighter load. There will be more to come for sure with this product.
I’ve been using thinkTank’s Urban Disguise 50 Classic shoulder bag for a while now and I thought it was time for a review. I don’t normally use bags without wheels or a backpack harness but this briefcase/camera bag does a really good job and I especially like how small it is and yet how much it holds. Now I did make a modification that really helped, it’s in my video. If you want to know more about the bag you can go to thinkTank and find out or if you want to pick one up you can go to B&H.
Finally we come to the last blog of the week before I leave for South Africa. Up till now I have talked about some of the different items that I would be taking with me to make my life not only easier but also to get the job done. You might be wondering why I left this item until last but it kind of wraps everything up nicely. Which Camera Bag to take? This is truly an important question because not only is there a weight restriction of the check in bag but also most of the planes I will be traveling on are going to be smaller jets, which means less overhead space. After some research one bag seemed to stand out for the rugged terrain that I will eventually be going to. The thinkTank Airport Accelerator.
The first thing you will notice is that this is not a roller bag, this is a backpack. Where I will be going there will not be pavement so a roller bag isn’t very practical. Next it’s physically small enough for those smaller jets being only 14” W x 20.5” H x 9” D while at the same time is very well padded. Now part of my trip is going to be on Safari and that’s really where a lot of these requirements are coming into place, but this bag had to be able to fit my 600f4 which is my main Wildlife lens. It does, with some careful packing around the lens. It also holds 2 D4’s, a 70-200 VRII, a 24-70 AF-S f2.8, a 14-24 f/4 and a SB-900. It holds a couple other little things too. Now as I said at the beginning of the week I’ve been cramming on logistics for this trip so I haven’t had time to make a packing video but luckily I know someone who has made one. To give you some idea of what this bag can do, head over to my Dad’s blog and check out his video on the Accelerator
This past Christmas one of my presents was a new camera bag. Now normally whenever I get something I got to talk about it right away but I didn’t want to until I had some actual time to play with it. This is the Thinktank Glass Limo. It’s named that way because it can hold everything up to a 600mmf/4 without attached body. It has lots of compartments for smaller lens and adjustable cushions for the long glass.
With all the studies lately about how increased weight on your shoulders over an extended period of time is bad for your back and shoulders, you might be asking why do I like this bag? Well as opposed to my sling bag, Airport AirStream or MP1, this one is great for outdoor use. Now I haven’t tried skiing or fishing in it yet, but I can say that hiking in it is very comfortable. What makes it so comfortable is not only the back support but also the width of the bag is only 9″ while the height is 20″, exterior, which means it rests over the center of your back without being awkward to one side or another. A piece of advice though, if you bring a tripod and mount it to one side, bring a water bottle to balance out the other side. I learned that the hard way the first time.
The one nightmare that every photographer has is the safety of their camera equipment when flying commercial. We have all heard the stories of just how bad things can be. With some necessary precautions and logical thinking most unpleasantness can be avoided. I just got back from a trip and every plane I flew on I had to Gate Check my camera bag. I never like doing that but it’s the way it is. With my ThinkTank V2.0 International bag I never worry about it. I’ll tell you why.
As I was flying back home the other day I watched as they loaded the plane. I always like getting a window so that i can watch the plane get loaded. It’s a little piece of mind when you see your bags get loaded. Well I watched as the guys on the ground through my ThinkTank up on the conveyor belt to get loaded. Even with the fragile sticker on it, it still gets thrown around. After looking through everything this morning I found nothing wrong. 2 camera bodies, four lenses including a 200-400VR and a number of accessories with no issues, that is how good these bags are. If you haven’t tried one yet I suggest you do and for those who already know about them, check out their smaller bags, Airport Airstream, perfect for the overhead of just about any plane.
One item that every photographer has plenty of in their closests, garages, offices, shelves, wherever is camera bags. IT stands for good reason. As we grow our skills and our equipment the need for bigger and better bags arise. Some bags are good for some jobs and not for others. The one issue that has been brought up that every photographer needs to take seriously is how much stress are we putting on our backs from carrying lots of equipment? When you’re young, like myself, it doesn’t matter as much. If i were to carry 40 pounds of gear, which is my normal Wildlife Bag load, for the next 50 years on my back, I might have a problem. The other catch with bags is travel. As we all know flying can be a hassle with camera gear and laptops. Safety is a big concern. So for this last trip to DC I used my Airport International Thinktank bag.
For those of you that know about Thinktank Bags then you know how good they are. For those that don’t I’ll give a brief explanation. First off this bag is pretty darn well padded without being extra bulky padding. That extra padding always adds to the weight and takes away from space inside. By having thin but strong padding I can easily get my 200-400 and the rest of my gear in. Next the bag can fit in the over head of most plans. Now since I live in Bozeman the biggest planes we get out of here are SRJ700’s. Needless to say even this don’t fit in the overhead but thanks to the next feature I don’t about that. The bag comes with a built lock for the zippers. It’s perfect if you have to stow it below. For those of you concerned about leaving your bag in a hotel room it comes with a carbon fiber cord to attach to something. Now the one piece it doesn’t come with and I find that this helps, are the “Pleas handle with care, Thank You” stickers for the side. You be surprised what that “Thank You” at the end can do. Best part is for you B&H buyers, they now sell ThinKTank bags. Check them out at the link above.