October 26, 2008: Bag #5
I had a few ideas for this bag:
- Make a reversible bag, for variety.
- Make a bag with some sort of design on the flap and inside (just a stripe, in this case), but with hidden stitching, unlike the previous sew-and-cut designs.
- Make a bag with mostly-hidden straps and fasteners (smaller, plastic, black fasteners, mainly hidden under the flap in the "blue-out" configuration, though very visible in the "black out" configuration).
- Make a bag where the closing flap overhangs the body of the bag a bit, to avoid the "Timbuk2 rain gap problem" (as we head into the rainy season in SF).
- Try out a thicker, somewhat stiffer and higher-friction webbing for the strap, both to avoid the sliding-around-the-torso problem bag #3 had, and maybe also the "shoulder strap bunching up in the D-ring at the edge of the bag" problem.
- Try both oval-shaped and D-shaped rings for the attachment points from the shoulder strap to the bag, to see which works better.
- Try out some webbing that has little reflective strips sewn into it.
- Still use the same general methods I used in the previous bag.
- I think the design and the stripes came out decent-looking, and works with either side out.
- The overall geometry came together, mostly-- after visualizing in 3D, I just cut some flat shapes out, sewed them together, and it actually looks like a bag.
- Melting the cut ends of the webbing in an open flame really helped stop them from unraveling during use.
- The stiffer webbing works well for the shoulder strap.
- The webbing with reflective strips sewn into it is amazingly reflective (most of the photos above are taken with flash, and the reflective strap jumps out).
- I put fasteners for the top flap's straps on the inside and outside of the bag (female versions, to avoid having duplicate straps), so it can strap shut with either color on the outside. This ended up working and being fairly unobtrusive.
- The plastic "triglide slider" I used (not sure the official name-- a slider with two slot cutouts, for adjusting strap length) was much better than the metal ones I used in the past-- thicker and easier to grab
- [Dec '08 note: The larger overhanging flap does help keep the contents dry in a light rain, when biking with the bag at an angle over my shoulder, unlike bag #3]
- Well, it's a pain not having pockets or pencil-holders. I wasn't sure how to do them in a clean-looking way on a reversible bag, and I wanted to get it done in a day, but I'm already missing them. [Dec '08 note: this is part of the plan for bag #6]
- I was going quickly and didn't measure anything, so it came out a bit smaller than I planned. [Dec '08 note: actually, I find this size pretty convenient, good for holding a bike lock, notebook, and a few random things, but still small enough that when I'm wearing it at a show or on public transit I don't feel like I'm always bumping into people with it ]
- I didn't quite mentally visualize the way the overhanging top flap would turn inside out correctly. (Like the other bags, I sewed this one inside-out in most places, then turned it right-side-out through a hole I left, but what was a narrow slit between the body and the overhanging flap ended up looking all puckered up in certain places once I turned it inside out. Just a little detail, though.)
- The overhanging flap and the shoulder strap somewhat interfere-- I'll have to see if the shoulder strap holds the overhanging flap open in an undesirable way. [Dec '08 note: nope, not a problem]
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