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  1. #1
    kraker's Avatar
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    Which bag for a Mamiya C3 + some more stuff?

    Hi all,

    I'm looking for a better bag for my MF gear. The problem of the "digital age" is that most -if not all- info I can find on bags lists how many small digital bodies and lenses you can fit inside. There's no way to know whether the Mamiya brick will fit. Well, if the manufacturer lists some internal sizes, that might give me an idea. Trouble is, all shops have some bags, no shop has all bags, so although I've tried, "just bringing your gear along and trying a bag" doesn't really work. Besides, then you can only choose from what the local shop has in stock, and I may miss a nice bag just because the shop doesn't have it.

    I'm sure APUG is a good place to ask as well...

    So, what I want to take with me is:

    - Mamiya C3,
    - 1 extra lens (or should I say: 2 extra lenses?); maybe another one in the future (the lenses aren't that big, though...),
    - Zero2000 pinhole camera (always nice to bring that as a second camera),
    - "Some stuff" (some filters, some rollfim (5-10 rolls), notebook, ... you know, just "some stuff"),
    - Nice to have: enough space in there to fit a Metz 45 CT1, although I will not take this with me very often.

    I'm not 100% sure whether I'm looking for a backpack or a reporter-style bag. Because of the weight, a backpack might be a better choice, but to have the camera "at the ready", I much prefer a reporter-style bag.

    I was looking at the Packington from Billingham yesterday. Still need to measure the size of my equipment... Seems like a very nice bag, if it's big enough.

    If any of you has some advice, either on backpacks or reporter-style bags, I'd be happy to hear (read) it.

    Open for suggestions!

    shuttr.net
    -- A sinister little midget with a bucket and a mop / Where the blood goes down the drain --

  2. #2
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    This would be a good choice, I use Mamiya TLR gear and Billingham bags, and it can fulfil both functions, if you want to carry it as a backpack you can buy the backpack harness that just clips on at three points.
    Ben

  3. #3
    kraker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by benjiboy View Post
    This would be a good choice, I use Mamiya TLR gear and Billingham bags, and it can fulfil both functions, if you want to carry it as a backpack you can buy the backpack harness that just clips on at three points.
    Really? I didn't have a good look at the Billingham accessories yet, but that certainly sounds interesting!

    shuttr.net
    -- A sinister little midget with a bucket and a mop / Where the blood goes down the drain --

  4. #4
    Mike Wilde's Avatar
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    I have almost your precise outfit in a rolling backpack

    I run a c330f, with 65,80, and 180, pentax spot meter, filters, collapsible bounce circle, notes, business cards, release forms, grey card, DOF cards, Filter factors cheat sheet, cable release (i.e the usual camera bag clutter) I also cary a Metz 60 and battery.

    I use a rehabilititated and modified heavy duty nylon rolling school bag type backpack. I have fitted it with internal padding from a recycled 1/2" thick closed blue cell foam sleeping pad.

    The internal space I have divided up with 1/4" foam core board and clear plastic tape. There is room at the top centre for the camera, so with the front unzipped a bit the camera comes out easily. One side of the centre is the 180 lens compartment. The other side of the centre at the top is a continuation of a lower level, and houses the Metz with its head tilted straight up.

    The bottom row of the divided space has four slots , one for the bottom half of the flash (handle part), the battery pack, a 65lens comparmnt, and a spare compartent that usually houses a backup rangefinder camera, and a small 4x5" sample portfolio.

    Between the front padding and the front pockets I slip the collapsed bounce panel, and a bouce card for the flash.

    The outside has a number of pockets, the largest of witch, at topo center holds the spot meter. The pack ahs different straps to suppliment the zippers, through whih I can buckle on my tripod

    It works well for getting out with this heavy camera rig. On smooth surfaces, its collapsing handle pulls up and it is wheeled. Over rough trials the handle stows, and the backpad straps are revealed and to rig is carried. I have added a supplimentary hip belt that stows under, and attaches to a padded flap to spread some of the weight off of my shoulders.


    I used this rig for a 10 day trip to New York City last December, and it worked very well.

  5. #5

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    I used one of the large Lowepro Nova bags (sorry, don't remember the model number) for my C330 outfit. It easily held two bodies, 55mm, 80mm, 135mm lenses plus filters, adapter rings, hoods, lightmeter and film. The bags are fairly well-made and not very expensive here in the USA. Don't know if they're available in your country, however.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by kraker View Post
    Hi all,

    If any of you has some advice, either on backpacks or reporter-style bags, I'd be happy to hear (read) it.

    Open for suggestions!
    I don't know how big the pin-hole camera is, but I found the Lowepro Mini trekker easily ample for a C220, extra lens, Voigtlander R2 plus two spare lenses, filters, films, flash etc. You just need to play around with the dividers to get your optimum fit. In fact with these types of bag I think you're best to fill the thing with equipment (or styrofoam blocks) to stop anything jiggling about. Currently I carry an RB67 with three backs, flash and extension tube in the same pack. I could get a compact or rangefinder in too. Spare C-series lenses are much easier to pack in than RB ones!.

    I prefer a back-pack for landscapes as it's easy to do long walks with one of these. A shoulder bag is much more tiring and less stable. However the trade-off is that you need to take the back pack off and leave it on the floor to access all the bits. However, if you put a back pack on someone else, It's much easier on your back and legs and can be accessed whilst attached to the back!. If you want constant access to the bag whilst shooting and need it handy, the shoulder style is better.

    I think whichever type of photography majors in your style may be the most influential over choice. If you do wild and isolated landscapes, go for a backpack. Weddings and street photography, go for a shoulder bag.

  7. #7

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    I've been very happy alternating between a domke f-804 super satchel (for when i'm carrying various combinations of 5d & lenses and c220 and lenses and 645 and lenses - i can get two camera bodies and extra lenses in there easily) and the domke f-803 - which is a smaller bag, but i can still get a camera and a couple of lenses in there.

    Now if only the f-804 were just a little bit wider for my new laptop

  8. #8
    kraker's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and suggestions so far. You've all given me some ideas; I'll have a look at the suggested bags, on the internet, or -if I can find them- in a real shop.

    As to backpack versus shoulder bag... One of the bags I currently use is a 'normal' backpack ('normal' in the sense that it's not a photobag, no extra padding or anything like that). After giving it all some more thought, I think I would opt for a serious shoulder bag and keep my current backpack (a "Trunk & Co" "Ridesize" by Samsonite, for those interested) as a second option. Or, as Ross noted, use the backpack for the outdoors and the (to-be-purchased) shoulder bag for the city shooting.

    shuttr.net
    -- A sinister little midget with a bucket and a mop / Where the blood goes down the drain --

  9. #9
    Ole
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    It's amazing what will fit in a Lowepro S&F Rover Light - I use mine for everything from 35mm SLR with five lenses to 5x7" with six lenses and ten film holders. I haven't tried putting my Mamiya C3 with three lenses in it yet, mostly because I know it would fit with room to spare. And what would I use that spare space for? ...
    -- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
    Norway

  10. #10

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    Like Mike, I use a regular (non-photo) backpack for outdoor use. I removed the laptop insert from a large Eastpak backpack and replaced it with a home-made insert for my C330 + three lenses + Metz 40mz. When I go street shooting (without most of the extra "stuff"), I prefer my Domke F2. It's a bit pricey, but very heavy duty. Excellent bag.

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