Tom Bihn Western Flyer


Originally posted on


The Western Flyer might just be the ultimate overnight bag: classic lines, well-thought-out features, three comfortable carrying methods to choose among, the choice of backpack straps or a zip open (and shut) back pocket for the handle of rolling luggage and, of course, the materials and construction you’ve come to expect from TOM BIHN.

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It’s also the smallest of our three travel bags. The Tri-Star is larger than the Western Flyer, and the Aeronaut is larger than the Tri-Star; check out our carry-on Co-Pilot travel bag, too. It meets U.S. and international carry-on sizing requirements and fits in the overhead compartment of CRJ commuter planes.

The Western Flyer has two main compartments of equal size. The front compartment has a vertical divider that zips out of the way if it’s not wanted. Available for purchase separately are three sizes of Packing Cubes designed especially for the main compartments of the Western Flyer. Also available are the Packing Cube Backpack (Tri-Star/Western Flyer) and Packing Cube Shoulder Bag. Either half of the divided front compartment can fit a pair of shoes — Tom’s (he wears size 12) personal Holy Grail in any travel bag. (You may want to first put your shoes in an All Fabric Packing Cube or a plastic bag.) The back compartment is large and undivided; it has Annex Clips that can either be removed or used to clip our Horizontal or Vertical Brain Cell laptop case securely inside the Western Flyer. Consult our Laptop Bag Fit Guide to determine which size of Brain Cell you need for your laptop.

For access to all things small-and-easily-lost, the front of the Western Flyer features three zippered pockets, all with #8 YKK Aquaguard® water-repellent zippers (cord pulls are included at no charge). On the right is a subtle-but-clever curved zipper pocket: unzip it partially and it’s a useful pocket for a boarding pass. Unzipped entirely, it’s an expandable water bottle pocket. The bellows that make the pocket expandable can be snapped up so your water bottle doesn’t fall out; unsnap them for greater access to the pocket.

On the left side are two horizontal zippered pockets. The top zippered pocket spans the full height of the bag; the second goes about halfway. Both horizontal zippered pockets have O-rings inside. To one of these O-rings, an included 8″ Key Strap is attached, useful for tethering and keeping track of your keys, pocket watch, Swiss Army knife, or other small item.

A comfortable, padded handle sits directly above the center of gravity for a more balanced, comfortable carry. Two padded grab handles on the short ends facilitate pulling the bag out from the overhead compartment or a locker, or from under a seat.

The Western Flyer offers you the choice of comfortable hide-away backpack straps or a zippered back pocket for the handle of your rolling luggage. For longer sprints through the airport or across town, the backpack straps (same as those on our Aeronaut and Tri-Star convertible carry-on travel bags) are comfortable and help one carry a heavy load more easily. The padded, contoured shoulder straps feature a removable/adjustable sternum strap and can be tucked away in their own compartment when not in use. (The sternum strap is included. Add a waist strap for $5.) The rolling-luggage-handle carrying option is a unique design that offers two pockets — one for magazines/newspapers and one for your boarding pass or map — as well as a zip-open slot that allows you to slip the bag over the handle of your rolling luggage. Or, you can opt to carry the bag on your shoulder: two D rings accept our Absolute Shoulder Strap (almost anyone else’s shoulder strap will work too).

The Western Flyer is made with an exterior of our U.S. made, 1050 denier, high tenacity ballistic nylon: twice the abrasion resistance of 1680 denier fabric. It’s lined with our ultralight, super-tough, 200 denier Japanese Dyneema®/nylon ripstop fabric; a #10 YKK Aquaguard® water-repellent zipper closes the main compartment.

Take a trip: buy this bag and get out of here!


U.S. high tenacity 1050 denier ballistic nylon — or — ultralight 400d Dyneema®/420d nylon ripstop
200 denier Dyneema®/nylon ripstop fabric lining
#10 YKK coil zipper on main compartment
#8 YKK coil zippers on pockets
EVAZOTE® foam shoulder straps (if you choose backpack straps)
PORON® foam handle


Made in USA 
100% finished seams


Dimensions: 18″ x 12″ x 7″ / 455 x 305 x 180 mm
Backpack Straps, 1050d high tenacity ballistic nylon: 2 lb 10 oz / 1200 grams
Backpack Straps, 400d Dyneema®/420d nylon ripstop: 2 lb 3 oz / 985 grams
Rolling Luggage Pocket, 1050d high tenacity ballistic nylon: 2 lb 6 oz / 1075 grams
Rolling Luggage Pocket, 400d Dyneema®/420d nylon ripstop: 1 lb 13 oz / 835 grams
1600 cubic inches / 26 liters (ASTM Standard Measure)
Optional, removable 1″ / 25 mm waist strap


About nomadewalker

Inquisitive Mind, Compulsive Reader, Obsessive Marsupial Traveler, Breakfast Lover, Quotidian Observer!
This entry was posted in Bags, Personal Items, Suppliers and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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