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Photo Accessories / Bags/ Meters / Tripods etc A place to discuss the delights of photo accessories, including bags, meters, tripods, filters, straps, camera cases, lens hoods, anything non digital that can make your gearhead life a little bit more enjoyable.

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Old 06-19-2015   #41
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Having gone through almost as many bags as Joe, I'm leaning more towards baggy pockets. I think that the main reason we have so much trouble finding "The Perfect Bag" is, beyond the impossibility of it, is that they are just cumbersome no matter how small.
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Old 06-19-2015   #42
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i have pretty much gone full circle with the bags that i use...and am now using a quartet of domke bags...802 carries my work stuff, lunch, snacks etc plus an eos m with lens attached...the 803 carries my 2 fuji bodies plus lenses attached along with cards, batteries i pad mini etc...the 5xb has the eos m kit plus ipad mini...and the f6 for when i want it all with me at once or one kit and some extra room...
so, that is it...old fashioned domkes (or their clones).
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Old 06-19-2015   #43
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I'm working on getting a few videos before I release everything but I figure these are a couple videos that I can show.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CRyAYzVBBos

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8tF2F1ESI3U
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Old 08-27-2015   #44
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I will never understand why so many people like Domke bags. The waxed canvas will leave everything greasy & sticky, the metal clasps take too long to open if you are in a rush, and the canvas is so thin that it easily rubs through in no time. Domke bags are stuck in the 60s and ignore any progress in fabrics and materials over the last half century.

I'm a huge fan of the Thinktank Retrospective bags. Check them out if you are not fanilar with them.
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Old 08-27-2015   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
I will never understand why so many people like Domke bags. The waxed canvas will leave everything greasy & sticky, the metal clasps take too long to open if you are in a rush, and the canvas is so thin that it easily rubs through in no time. Domke bags are stuck in the 60s and ignore any progress in fabrics and materials over the last half century.

I'm a huge fan of the Thinktank Retrospective bags. Check them out if you are not fanilar with them.
none of what you say has been part of my experience with domke.
i like think tank but they usually put too much padding and too many little pockets in their bags for me.
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Old 08-27-2015   #46
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After 3 years Im rubbing through on one corner of my Domke bag. But my bag isnt waxed.

To each their own. If you don't like domke then fine with me.
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Old 08-27-2015   #47
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Hmm. I think you have never had a Domke bag...

My F5XB has been successfully carrying my gear since 1989 .. It's not waxed, is still in remarkably good condition, carries just the right amount, etc. the only thing that's worn out with it has been the shoulder strap; I'm on my third. Similar for my F3X and F6. The twenty year old (then) F803 I gave to my friend in 2011 is still going strong too.

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Old 08-27-2015   #48
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
I will never understand why so many people like Domke bags. The waxed canvas will leave everything greasy & sticky, the metal clasps take too long to open if you are in a rush, and the canvas is so thin that it easily rubs through in no time. Domke bags are stuck in the 60s and ignore any progress in fabrics and materials over the last half century.

I'm a huge fan of the Thinktank Retrospective bags. Check them out if you are not familiar with them.
Most decidedly not heavily waxed like my Brit Barbour jacket, but even that does not get sticky! Older Domke was not waxed, but were just canvas duck, which because of its tight weave is naturally waterproof.

Here is a photo of a 40 year old Domke Super Satchel F804, I have carried almost daily. It has been machine-washed quite a few times, so it is softer than new, and the postman pad has been replaced about every 5 years or so, when it just gets too grungy.



This is probably too much wear if one is fussy, but I am not, but this bag does have a cousin, a new smaller F2. I figure, looking at the worn corner it may not last more than another 10~15 years?

Retrospective Rain cover? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V2_FkqpWvv0 Probably not unless I take up wearing shoe covers.
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Old 08-27-2015   #49
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Hmm. I think you have never had a Domke bag...
My experience is based on owning a Domke F2 bag for over five years. I just think that Domke bags are highly overrated, old fashioned, and there are much better bags out there with better materials and features. They remind me of the canvas bags soldiers in WWI were carrying around
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Old 08-27-2015   #50
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For 1 body, 3 lenses and accessories (incl. film), I use a Thinktank Urban Disguise 30.
I don't think it's on the current catalog anymore but it pops up on ebay every so often.

The TT Retrospective 7 is nice too but a little on the heavy side for what it is.
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Old 08-27-2015   #51
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The Ryker is quite soft, I have both colors. I have the Avenger as well, but I use it more for carrying larger loads, and without the insert, I used it today for carrying files to court!

I am a pretty big Wotancraft fan, I also have the paratrooper, but will probably be selling that. Great bag, just not quite working for me.

I tried the Retrospective 5, wasn't happy with it.
I have one word: Raven

http://wotancraft.com/product.php?pid=150


Raven by unoh7, on Flickr


Raven 2 Bodies by unoh7, on Flickr

No problem for one M body with lens + 2 extra, as long as it's not 75 lux + .95 LOL

Unlike the Ryker, which is my main bag, this is light. Will also hold value better than anything. High quality, good starting price, and low production runs.
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Old 08-27-2015   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
My experience is based on owning a Domke F2 bag for over five years. I just think that Domke bags are highly overrated, old fashioned, and there are much better bags out there with better materials and features. They remind me of the canvas bags soldiers in WWI were carrying around
But still, five years with a bag you don't love, you are loyal to your choices!
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Old 08-27-2015   #53
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BTW, one other small bag that I like is the Domke F3X.
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Old 08-27-2015   #54
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I am convinced that a "perfect" bag doesn't exist, or if then only for a while.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdg137 View Post

I've been on another search to find a high quality bag, to hold a Leica M with lens attached, 2 other lenses, and some misc.

1 very small
2 light
3 very high quality
4 body hugging, not boxy
5 good protection
6 easy access to lenses, without having to dig or shift items around
7 will hold an M body with lens mounted, plus 2 other lenses and misc.
In your case, I can recommend the Dothebag Mono 04.

1- Yes, pretty small.
2- Not featherweight, but light enough.
3- Definitely!
4- Feels great, neither boxy nor bulky.
5- Yes, pretty decent protection.
6- Indeed. And the best buttons I have ever used.
7- Enough space for an M, three lenses and some smaller stuff.

Some pics here: https://retrocameracs.wordpress.com/...walker-tasche/

It bulks out a little with those two cams and 5 lenses (!) but is is really snuggly when loaded with just one cam and 3 lenses!
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Old 08-27-2015   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giganova View Post
My experience is based on owning a Domke F2 bag for over five years. I just think that Domke bags are highly overrated, old fashioned, and there are much better bags out there with better materials and features. They remind me of the canvas bags soldiers in WWI were carrying around
To each their own.

Most of the more modern variants, like the Think Tank Photo bag you pointed to, seem over-stuffed, over-heavy, and not as nicely wearable as the Domke's to me. Most seem like a big box rather than a camera bag.

But that's why there are so many different bags out there: so many different tastes and preferences.
I have several different makes and types too.

G
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Old 08-27-2015   #56
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bushcrafters, hunters, laptop geeks, women and others all search for the perfect bag ...
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Old 08-27-2015   #57
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My favorite bag is my Domke FX3. It may be old fashioned, but I've tried a few other bags and keep going back to this one. It holds two bodies, (M6/X100T) and two spare lenses, with room to spare for other things (film, sunblock, notepad, water bottle, etc.). It's just perfect for me.

I've had mine for probably 6 years or so and yes, it is wearing in some spots, but IMO, that's part of the charm of a Domke bag. When it's dead, i'll probably get another, maybe just a different color

This isn't my photo, but this is more or less what mine looks like at this point and I love it:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/buckpa...-4jfBrc-4jfL16
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Old 08-27-2015   #58
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No love for Ona bags anymore?
I use the small bowery for my M246 with lens mounted and 3 additional lenses, two stacked.
The bag form nicely to the body.
Will soon get the Prince Street so i can cary my A7II body along too.
They are well made and in my humble opinion have a good amount of protection without being over bulky.
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Old 08-27-2015   #59
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I've been looking for the perfect bag for 15 years. The only thing i've seen that was aesthetically close was a leather satchel that was not available/out of production as soon as i stumbled upon an image of it. I considered trying to commission someone to copy it, but doubted that person's comprehension of the 'design nuances' that made it appealing to me.

I want something that doesn't look like a camera bag, and doesn't look like a messenger bag. I have no interest in looking like a bike messenger, after spending 20+ years in midtown Manhattan, swarmed by the real thing. Why is this so difficult?

Problem is, there aren't any people with actual 'taste' working on this issue. Most of the 'solutions' look like they were either meant for:
• climbing everest in 2020
• climbing everest in 1944
• delivering contracts to an ad agency by a guy with dreads and 40 tats
• some Leica-toting, Dockers-wearing dentist's idea of Leather Luxury
• a fat, 1970s-era photojournalist, needing something to augment his khaki photo vest
• a non-fashion person's idea of what a fashion bag should look like.

I want something that can go from casual (jeans) to evening (blazer). Something with a little (understated) style. I barely even care about 'features.' But, aren't photographers among the most style-less people on the planet? Small market for what i'm looking for, apparently. At this point, i'm pretty sure i'm going to have to continue my strategy of adapting a bag with inserts and padding.

This is 'roughly' what i was after:

But, a bit smaller....
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Old 08-27-2015   #60
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Tenba 995.
I bought it 25 or 30 years ago and have used it ever since for my SLRs.
Cost a ton at the time but has been worth every penny.
I found another one (used) about five years ago for $10.00 and spent another $25.00 or so to fix it up, and it holds my rangefinder kit.
For me the perfect bag.
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Old 08-27-2015   #61
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The bare bones evolution has been as close as I've found to perfect for a day bag. Light, weather resistant, long strap with good pad and holds my two m4's with lenses and an extra lens or two. Not fond of the velcro though. Wish they'd do a stealth version again.
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Old 08-27-2015   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jan Pedersen View Post
No love for Ona bags anymore?
I use the small bowery for my M246 with lens mounted and 3 additional lenses, two stacked.
The bag form nicely to the body.
I'd second this. Have been using a Bowery for over two years now. It's traveled the world with me and I love it. Tried the Filson Field Camera bag for a trip to Fiji and it was quite big and hugged the body, but too floppy, offered too little protection, and it folded it on itself making it difficult to get things in/out of the bag. Have a Hadley Pro and it can hold a massive amount of gear, but is also on the stiffer side. The Domke FXA and FXB bags I own are nice and simple, but the velcro is annoying as hell.

My go-to travel bag will continue to be the Ona Bowery.


Not pictured - external battery pack and batteries for the Fuji which fit next to the film case in the center, ND/Orange filters which fit in the front pocket, and an iPad Air which can fit in the rear slot. For such a small bag, it can fit a lot of stuff when you need it to.
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Old 08-27-2015   #63
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I still think the Domke 803 satchel bags are the best overall. Mine is in nylon and shows almost no wear after 13 years of use.

One posters commented "the metal clasps take too long to open if you are in a rush" When traveling in very crowed places such as busses
or the subway in eastern Europe I have appreciated the clasp system.
It is much easier for the person carrying the bag to open it than someone who is not carrying it. Try it yourself sometime. I can open mine in a instant when I need to.

That said I would like something a little lighter and am considering the BBB bag but will add the Domke like clasp underneath the flap.
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Old 08-27-2015   #64
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Quote:
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The bare bones evolution has been as close as I've found to perfect for a day bag. Light, weather resistant, long strap with good pad and holds my two m4's with lenses and an extra lens or two. Not fond of the velcro though. Wish they'd do a stealth version again.
+1 own a couple BBBs, wish sometimes for just a bit more padding, but overall like them a lot.
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3 perfect bags
Old 08-27-2015   #65
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3 perfect bags

I have 3 perfect bags. !- small soft insulated lunch bag; 2- $10 messenger style bag from a box hobby store; 3-Flambeau a12 tackle bag 12x6x6. With these I can carry anything from 1 body 2 lens 2 body 3 lens to a pentax 645 with 2 inserts and 3 lens. All for under $60 and none scream steal me.
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Old 08-28-2015   #66
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I have to be honest, the Filson Harvey Messenger may be worth a look for you. It might be a little bigger than you want but it pretty much checks all the other boxes of your requirements. My only complaint with the bag (ok I have two) is that the strap is just ever so slightly not long enough to wear comfortably across my chest (I'm also 6'3" so anyone shorter than me would have no problem). I still wear it across my chest but I wish it sat a little lower.

The other "boo-hoo" about the bag is the insert, it's removable, but the divider is in a fixed position, it's either in, or it's out. I would have liked a little more flexibility. That being said, the size of the insert is great and because it doesn't fill the width of the bag, it allows the bag to hug my body perfectly (first camera bag I've owned to have done this).

Edit: As an additional note: This bag is tough. Seriously tough. Filson's slogan of "Unfailing Goods" is no joke, I put this bag through pretty awful conditions over the last few months and it hardly looks worse for the wear (Including Snow, Heavy rain, Mud, Aggressive sand, and Some really mean bushes). It kept my equipment safe and dry through all of this.
Re Filson reliability - true for their products made prior to their recent ownership and management changes, but not now. I have 30 year old filson gear that's still serviceable. I have one of Filson's tin cloth brief cases (a recent gift from my family) whose side seams pulled out after 2 years of light use. Been in for repair for over 4 weeks with no ETA from filson service. Bought a tin cloth coat last year that had to be returned because its snaps didn't, well, snap. Filson replaced it, wouldn't refund the price due to my several weeks of use, but the snaps on the replacement are only marginally better, which I put up with. If you're measuring quality over a few months, fine. Just about any cordura bag will hold up against rain, snow, and mud for a a few months. My BBB's have for several years, for example. Filson's rep however is based on decades of serviceability. We'll see how my recent purchases hold up over the long haul, but it's not looking good.

Re the insert in the harvey bag, you might try martilena over at etsy - her made-to-order inserts are good stuff. Undersize it, like you suggest. I have a martilena insert in a filson messenger bag (same as the harvey without the association or filson insert, got off ebay at a good discount). Happy with it so far, maybe a little too well padded, but it functions and carries well.
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Old 08-28-2015   #67
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I'd second this. Have been using a Bowery for over two years now. It's traveled the world with me and I love it. Tried the Filson Field Camera bag for a trip to Fiji and it was quite big and hugged the body, but too floppy, offered too little protection, and it folded it on itself making it difficult to get things in/out of the bag. Have a Hadley Pro and it can hold a massive amount of gear, but is also on the stiffer side. The Domke FXA and FXB bags I own are nice and simple, but the velcro is annoying as hell.

My go-to travel bag will continue to be the Ona Bowery.


Not pictured - external battery pack and batteries for the Fuji which fit next to the film case in the center, ND/Orange filters which fit in the front pocket, and an iPad Air which can fit in the rear slot. For such a small bag, it can fit a lot of stuff when you need it to.
Sweet rig - I need to look at the Bowery. How long is the strap, if you don't mind measuring?
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Old 08-28-2015   #68
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on my quest to find the perfect travel bag, i bought 3 bags to try out and see which one I liked best.
Lowepro Terraclime 100
Dollice DR-610 (replica of Domke F5XB)
Think Tank Retrospective 5

If the 3, my favorite has to be the Lowepro Terraclime, the lightest of them all and wraps on my body nicely.
Downside is because of the material used and design, it doesn't offer much protection, also whoever designed the hook for closing it needs to be shot.

Next favorite bag is the Think Tank 5, this thing can carry a lot of stuff for its size.
I like how I can attach pouches on the sides for extra space, then take them off once in the hotel. I'm thinking of using this bag for our euro trip and in it right now is my M240 w/ 50 collapsible, Hexar RF, 35mm cron, CV 21mm, batteries, rolls of film and other miscellaneous stuff.

Least favorite is the Domke F5XB, I just found it too small and the zipper can be frightening to close/open all the time in fear of scratching your gear. also the front-pocket is a joke.
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Old 08-28-2015   #69
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There is no perfect bag, because there are many different circumstances and no single bag can suit all of them.

Day-to-day I mostly use a Domke F8, which replaced an old Lowepro camera pouch of similar (small!) size but somewhat less usefulness. When on a more specific camera outing I mostly carry a Domke F3X, occasionally supplemented by a Lowepro 'snoot' type bag if I also want an SLR with long lens.

For carrying a comprehensive SLR kit I've often used a Lowepro Slingshot-type bag. Or a Domke F2, depending on circumstances.

When travelling by car I have a big old Billingham 445 that I put a bunch of stuff in but hardly carry anywhere except from the car to a motel or hotel room.

When travelling by air I've often used a Tamrac roller-bag - occasionally for camera gear (when travelling with checked baggage) but mostly as handy airline-legal luggage for clothes, laptops, chargers, cords'n'cables etc. - with cameras usually carried in a Billingham Hadley Pro.

By my count, that's at least seven camera bags that I use all the time. And not one can really replace the others, in the circumstance they're used. And I have more(!) bags - some of which I even use. Occasionally.

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Old 08-28-2015   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdwsta4 View Post
I'd second this. Have been using a Bowery for over two years now. It's traveled the world with me and I love it. Tried the Filson Field Camera bag for a trip to Fiji and it was quite big and hugged the body, but too floppy, offered too little protection, and it folded it on itself making it difficult to get things in/out of the bag. Have a Hadley Pro and it can hold a massive amount of gear, but is also on the stiffer side. The Domke FXA and FXB bags I own are nice and simple, but the velcro is annoying as hell.

My go-to travel bag will continue to be the Ona Bowery.


Not pictured - external battery pack and batteries for the Fuji which fit next to the film case in the center, ND/Orange filters which fit in the front pocket, and an iPad Air which can fit in the rear slot. For such a small bag, it can fit a lot of stuff when you need it to.
How many dividers does the Bowery come with? The Ona website shows it with just one. In this photo it has two. I think I may have seen another photo with three dividers.
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Old 08-28-2015   #71
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Least favorite is the Domke F5XB, I just found it too small and the zipper can be frightening to close/open all the time in fear of scratching your gear. also the front-pocket is a joke.
Yes! And the strap length is too [email protected] short for large, unsightly types (me).

Quote:
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How many dividers does the Bowery come with? The Ona website shows it with just one. In this photo it has two. I think I may have seen another photo with three dividers.
Good catch. It kinda looks like the additional divider isn't OEM, and made of a smoother material. I think Ona sells separate add'l dividers too.
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Old 08-28-2015   #72
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.. Least favorite is the Domke F5XB, I just found it too small and the zipper can be frightening to close/open all the time in fear of scratching your gear. also the front-pocket is a joke.
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Originally Posted by MCTuomey View Post
Yes! And the strap length is too [email protected] short for large, unsightly types (me). ...
Hmm. I'm 6', not small, and on my third strap (I wore the first two out, this one is going but I have several spares in stock..). I have to shorten the strap so that the bag doesn't hang too low and get in the way when walking.

Currently mine has a Nikon F6 fitted with 25-50/4, a TC-16A, and a 180/2.8 AF in it, as well as three extra rolls of film and a spare set of batteries. I leave the zipper open when shooting. My phone slides into the front pocket.

This same bag went with me to Europe for a three-week trip in 1998 carrying Nikon FM2n+MD12 with 20, 35, 50, and 80-200mm lenses it it, on sabbatical in 1996 with M6 and 35/50/90 lenses, to Australia in 2001 with the same Leica kit, and the British Isles with Panasonic L1, 11-22 zoom, 25/1.4, and 35 Macro.

Lots of other kits over the years too. The zipper has never scratched anything.

Seems to be fine for what I've used it for. 26 years on and still going... :-)

G
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Old 08-28-2015   #73
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The Bowery only comes with one divider which is disappointing. Thankfully, I have plenty of other camera bags to steal another from! So yes, this one has a second divider from a Dome F5XB.

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Originally Posted by Rob-F View Post
How many dividers does the Bowery come with? The Ona website shows it with just one. In this photo it has two. I think I may have seen another photo with three dividers.
On the long end it's approximately 55"

Quote:
Originally Posted by MCTuomey View Post
Sweet rig - I need to look at the Bowery. How long is the strap, if you don't mind measuring?
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Old 08-28-2015   #74
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Originally Posted by uhoh7 View Post
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No concern for scratches from those metal zippers?

Personally I avoid metal zippers like the plague around cameras.
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Old 08-28-2015   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
Hmm. I'm 6', not small, and on my third strap (I wore the first two out, this one is going but I have several spares in stock..). I have to shorten the strap so that the bag doesn't hang too low and get in the way when walking.

Currently mine has a Nikon F6 fitted with 25-50/4, a TC-16A, and a 180/2.8 AF in it, as well as three extra rolls of film and a spare set of batteries. I leave the zipper open when shooting. My phone slides into the front pocket.

This same bag went with me to Europe for a three-week trip in 1998 carrying Nikon FM2n+MD12 with 20, 35, 50, and 80-200mm lenses it it, on sabbatical in 1996 with M6 and 35/50/90 lenses, to Australia in 2001 with the same Leica kit, and the British Isles with Panasonic L1, 11-22 zoom, 25/1.4, and 35 Macro.

Lots of other kits over the years too. The zipper has never scratched anything.

Seems to be fine for what I've used it for. 26 years on and still going... :-)

G
don't get me wrong, it is a good bag and I love my Domke F2.
but compared to the Think Tank and Lowepro, for me, I prefer the other 2 more
but maybe I don't like it as much because it's a replica and not a real Domke
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Old 08-28-2015   #76
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Thx for the measurement, Max!
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Old 08-28-2015   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
Hmm. I'm 6', not small, and on my third strap (I wore the first two out, this one is going but I have several spares in stock..). I have to shorten the strap so that the bag doesn't hang too low and get in the way when walking.
G
Fine, for you (not sure what the "hmm" means). I'm 6'3" and 225# and at max extension that strap puts the bag high on my hip, where it impedes my elbow while walking. A no-go. I've got a little used one I'll sell you
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Old 08-28-2015   #78
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I've given up on the quest for the perfect bag. I now quest for the most bags. I regularly change the gear from my "Man Bag" to my f803 to my f6 to my Vinyl Doctor bag to my, my...... I forget now.
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Old 08-28-2015   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MCTuomey View Post
Fine, for you (not sure what the "hmm" means). I'm 6'3" and 225# and at max extension that strap puts the bag high on my hip, where it impedes my elbow while walking. A no-go. I've got a little used one I'll sell you
I might take you up on that.

It could be that the replacement Domke shoulder straps are longer than the original. The original of mine wore out so many years ago that I can't remember whether it was shorter or what. But that's one of the best things about the F5XB: the strap is easily changeable compared to many of the bags in this class.

G
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Old 08-29-2015   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
I might take you up on that.

It could be that the replacement Domke shoulder straps are longer than the original. The original of mine wore out so many years ago that I can't remember whether it was shorter or what. But that's one of the best things about the F5XB: the strap is easily changeable compared to many of the bags in this class.

G
Good point, G. None of my current bags feature replacement straps - when the strap's worn out, the bag's done for. Despite the poor fit for me, Domke materials and construction are first-rate and meant for long-term use.
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