Why do most gadget bags open the wrong way ?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by benjiboy, Dec 24, 2011.

  1. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,327
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I don't know if it's just me but I've often wondered why shoulder carried gadget bags (of which I have a few) have lids that have the hinge on the side that's next to your body when it's on your shoulder which means that you have to hold the lid open with the hand on the opposite side of your body to get to the contents with the hand on the same side when it would be far more user friendly to have the lid hinged on the opposite side to the body so when open it would stay open and give much easier access to the contents with just the one hand.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 24, 2011
  2. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

    Messages:
    6,498
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Perhaps tradition - purses have generally opened that way if they have a flap.

    Perhaps convenience - carrying a bag with the clasp against the body might be uncomfortable and damaging to garments.

    Perhaps because they are often used only for safe storage of gear when transporting rather than for being "worked out of". The only bag of mine that I work out of is a Domke and I often flip the lid "inside out" (outside in, really) to make the bag open and to make the gear accesable. Msotly, though, I set it down when working rather than walking with it on my shoulder.
     
  3. semi-ambivalent

    semi-ambivalent Subscriber

    Messages:
    700
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2011
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I once carried my Domke F2 "backwards" for a day just to see if it was any better. It certainly made access easier but I rationalized that if I fell or the bag was stripped off my shoulder the contents would spill out easier than if even an unclipped cover was covering it. But one day does not a valid test make; I use it in the usual fashion and swear occasionally. I'm more concerned about the mystical affinity my camera straps have for the handle of the parking brake and seat adjustment levers in just about any car I've even owned. :laugh:

    s-a
     
  4. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,327
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have A Domke F2 and the Domke US postal Service shoulder pad, and has never slipped off my shoulder.
     
  5. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,327
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    To me Brian If a camera shoulder bag is difficult to "workout of of " and needs to be set down to use it's about as much use to me as tits on a bull.







    2
     
  6. Mainecoonmaniac

    Mainecoonmaniac Subscriber

    Messages:
    3,855
    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2009
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The world discriminates against lefties, South Paws.
     
  7. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,327
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Ain't that the truth, I'm left handed.
     
  8. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

    Messages:
    6,498
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Well... then you're likely to be frustrated. They all seem to be difficult to work out of. The most successful I have been is with the Domke F2 or F3 (can't remember which is which anymore) and the flap "flipped backward". In general, my bags are heavy enough that setting them down while working is a welcome relief. Good luck to you.
     
  9. polyglot

    polyglot Member

    Messages:
    3,472
    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2009
    Location:
    South Austra
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Most of the bags I've seen have the top flap latching onto the (out)side of the bag rather than the top lip. If you turn that around, you'd need to dig between the bag and your body to get to the latch, which would suck.

    For a satchel, I have a Crumpler 7M Dollar Home with the flap arrangement; I find that my elbows hold the lid in place just fine while I'm digging through the bag. Problem is that I can load it up so much that it will cause spinal damage, so I've switched to a backpack (Kata 3N1). In theory the backpack swings around for good access but in practise that functionality basically sucks unless you only want to retrieve a 35mm body from the side of the pack.
     
  10. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    17,919
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Honolulu, Ha
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Urban Disguise bags are easy to work out of while hanging on your shoulder. The main compartment is zippered on the top down the middle, so you don't have to lift the flap to get to your lenses. I have the UD50 and UD30.
     
  11. semi-ambivalent

    semi-ambivalent Subscriber

    Messages:
    700
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2011
    Shooter:
    35mm
    You know, I tried one of those with my first bag and didn't like it. Can't now remember why. Glad to hear it works well for you; perhaps it's time to try one again.
     
  12. r-brian

    r-brian Member

    Messages:
    613
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2003
    Location:
    Albuquerque,
    My Galen Rowell bags open from the body side out. Galen helped develop them and I guess hanging from the side of a mountain by one hand, he wanted a bag he could get into. RIP Galen.
     
  13. NB23

    NB23 Member

    Messages:
    1,073
    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2009
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Haha! :D:D:D

     
  14. BrianShaw

    BrianShaw Member

    Messages:
    6,498
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Now that's the right idea for a bag that can be worked out of while still on the shoulder!
     
  15. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

    Messages:
    20,328
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I will only buy camera bags that are top loading backpacks. I will not even waste my time to look at the popular dump my camera on the ground style backpack.
     
  16. MattKing

    MattKing Subscriber

    Messages:
    16,155
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2005
    Location:
    Delta, BC, Canada
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I have an old camera bag that I picked up used from a thrift store. Instead of one single zipper down the middle, it has a 2 inch wide flap with zippers on each side. The zippers are connected with a single tye, so one just pulls the tye, and both zip or unzip.

    It works great for an OM body, but medium format or 35mm with built in winder bodies are wider/deeper than is optimum for the compartments under the zippered flap.

    I have an athletic/gym bags with the same sort of closure and better room inside, but it lacks the dividers and padding I want.

    And of course, as I am left handed, the double zipper zips in the wrong direction :sad:.
     
  17. tom_micklin

    tom_micklin Member

    Messages:
    165
    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2004
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I've used f64 bags for years for exactly that reason. They open on the body side and access is very easy. I like them especially for large format. Getting at film holders, etc.

    Tom
     
  18. Sirius Glass

    Sirius Glass Subscriber

    Messages:
    20,328
    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Years ago, I had one shoulder camera bag that opened the way the OP described and the top served as a stable level tray. I could never find another one like that.
     
  19. LarryP

    LarryP Member

    Messages:
    156
    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2011
    Location:
    charleston s
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Benji I have the same problem, must be those right handed bags we're having to use. On an unrelated note being a lefty has at least one advantage , if you're not keen on loaning something just tell them it's left-handed:smile: .Most people then look confused and decide they don't really want to borrow it. I usually wear the bag "backwards" if I'll be in and out of it frequently.
     
  20. MFstooges

    MFstooges Member

    Messages:
    209
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2010
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Most of these bags have compartment on the top flap for thin stuffs like filters etc. When carried reversed the top can open more than 180 degree. I found out the hard way when forgetting to zip this compartment, I opened the top an it spilled couple stuffs down the cliff.
     
  21. Paul Jenkin

    Paul Jenkin Member

    Messages:
    483
    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    Location:
    Essex, UK.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Like most of us I have a few bags (and have owned many more since the days when I first started photographing in the mid 1970's).

    For my "daily" bag, I use a Billingham Hadley (M6 TTL + 4 lenses + film + iPod + wallet, keys. Very comfy and easy to use. I had a Lowepro "Stealth Reporter" at one point (a large one) and it was a nightmare for the reasons the OP outlined.

    I had (still have) one of the original Slingshot 300 bags but this also opened the wrong way round andstuff fell out as it was facing away from the photographer. I wrote to Lowepro about this to see if anything could be done to improve what was, otherwise, a great bag. At the next "Focus on Imaging" show, I went to the Lowpro stand and met up with the Product Manager. He explained that they'd just introduced a new range called the "Classified Sling" which, when slung round to the front, opens up with the enrance at the top and the hinge on the far side - away from the photographer. This makes it easier to get into and also feels like you can keep your kit away from prying eyes / fingers when travelling.

    I have the 220AW version and my wife has the 180AW version. Great pieces of kit. Comfortable, practical and not "obvious" as being camera bags. Worth checking out.
     
  22. PeteZ8

    PeteZ8 Member

    Messages:
    410
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    Location:
    Newtown, PA
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Check out Kata as well, they have a few nice size shoulder bags that open the "correct" way. I was looking at a few in my local store recently although for some reason I can't seem to find them on their site right now. If I get back to the store again I'll try to get model numbers. They were really, really nice bags.
     
  23. PeteZ8

    PeteZ8 Member

    Messages:
    410
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    Location:
    Newtown, PA
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Bags I looked at were the Kata WS-604 and WS-606, sadly now discontinued. I may grab the 604 for my MF gear while they still have it.
     
  24. Leigh B

    Leigh B Member

    Messages:
    1,035
    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2011
    Location:
    Maryland, US
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Duhhh... Turn the bag around.

    - Leigh
     
  25. Seele

    Seele Member

    Messages:
    194
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2004
    Location:
    Sydney Austr
    That does not always work; the outside might have external pockets and you would not want them against your body.

    The bag I use has the top hinge on the outside top edge and works very well, it can be held down by a short velcro flap, and the zipper that holds it down properly has two handles so it can be zipped up either way, or both directions at once. The brand was "Oyster" although not marked as such, I bought it in the early 80s at Jessops, the branch in Holborn, London; I replaced the strap as it got threadbare but it's still my go-to bag: certainly got my money's worth.