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Old 06-14-2013, 02:37 AM   #101  
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My LW 737 Stealth is over 5.5 years old...had to put Loctite on the bottom screws, take a file to razor-sharp burrs on the skidplate made by sidewalks/concrete steps, I've lost a couple zipper pulls, and the frame slightly bent courtesy of PHL rampers - but its still going strong.

Its WAY overkill for corporate flying, but for an airline job I would never own a different bag.
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Old 06-14-2013, 03:21 AM   #102  
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Strongbags........crap.

don't waste your money, stick with LW, I wish I did.
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Old 06-14-2013, 06:10 AM   #103  
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I was a big proponent of the Costco method ($100 bag, free return), but when Costco got rid of the 'Kirkland Signature Executive' (its back now, I believe), I had to go with a different option.

I went with the Strongbag Vortex 2 22". Had it for 3 years now, its been around the world. Wheels, zippers, and pull handle are as solid as the day I bought the bag.

Pros:
  • metal on all sides but the top, not just a metal frame (like LW), so the contents are more protected (the top of the bag, obviously, is not hard sided)
  • fits in ERJ and CRJ bins (yes, seriously - it fits!) Caveats: sideways, and the bag can't be too overstuffed
  • lighter than the LW
  • I can replace and repair everything myself
  • Since it's hard-sided, you can add whatever you want to any side of the bag by drilling out a hole to attach, like another handle, with no reinforcement necessary

Cons:
  • occasionally won't fit wheels in/out in old Boeings, or you have to get creative, like putting a pillow under the bag (for the life of me, I don't know why this bag isn't 1/2" shorter, so this issue wouldn't exist)
  • I have to remember to tighten the nuts under the grab handle on top of the bag about once a year - if I forget, the nut falls off into the bag, and then I have to go fish it out, which usually requires removing all the contents of the bag to open the lining - just 5 minutes, but a pain. Or maybe I am a sissy and can't tighten a nut properly.
  • no longer available to purchase at the Stop Over Store. It's hard to do a direct comparison on the LW and the SB when Stop Over Store doesn't carry the SB (SOS is owned by LW now, so they don't carry the competition)

Mainline rampers broke both of my plastic slide rails on the underside of the bag in one single incident (dropped hard onto the bin lip or the bin door was closed on the bag, I'm thinking). SB replacements arrived 2 days later via priority mail, 5 minutes with a screw driver and the bag is good as new. I've seen a LW bag's frame get bent when a ramper did this - that's some major damage.

Very happy overall with my purchase.
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Old 06-15-2013, 08:36 PM   #104  
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I've had a PN (née luggage works) bag for 14 years now. It's been rebuilt 4 times. The main zipper is going so I believe this will be the end for my bag. It's been great, the biggest issue I've had is the handle, then the side pocket zippers. I would like a bigger bag for my 4 day trips in the winter where I carry a lot of clothes since I run outdoors. I am looking at the Strong bag and may go that way.
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Old 06-16-2013, 10:17 AM   #105  
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LW is a much better bag for me, there is a reason you see more of them
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Old 06-16-2013, 10:26 AM   #106  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cactusmike View Post
I would like a bigger bag for my 4 day trips in the winter where I carry a lot of clothes since I run outdoors. I am looking at the Strong bag and may go that way.
If you do decide to go with another LW, consider the "Suiter" model.

The additional pocket on the flap adds a good amount of storage place so I can fit all my winter stuff in, as well as my Macbook Air, all chargers, cords, etc.

However, when you do that, the bag does get very heavy, but will still fits in mainline aircraft overhead bins.

I pack pretty light, and carry quick dry/moisture wicking workout clothing. So I do like has been discussed in multiple other threads and do a wash/dry after the workout.
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Old 06-18-2013, 03:30 AM   #107  
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I live about an hour from the LW factory in MO. Anybody ever gone there to buy one? Is there any benefit to doing so?
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:04 AM   #108  
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I'd say the SB would get the edge for numerous reasons above, EXCEPT:

First of all its made in China for a similar price point that LW is made in the USA (I believe). I mean seriously? If you save that much on labor you better get WAY more product for your money and you just don't. YMMV on that one.

More importantly, like others mentioned, it doesn't fit wheels in/out in hardly any narrowbody aircraft bin. The bag was designed by a 737 pilot who'se primary concern was fitting it in the 737 jumpseat area, which supposedly is one of the most restrictive. So I guess it fits there (haven't tried it) but you can't get it on hardly any full mainline flight smaller than a 767 except maybe a few here and there that have expanded bins, maybe.

Not sure about putting a pillow under it to elevate its bottom (wait, what are we talking about again?) but do the walk of shame from row 40-something to check your bag because it wouldn't fit even though any other carry on bag would have just one time and you'll be cursing the day you ever heard of that bag.

Absolutely asinine they designed it like that. Total, epic, flat spin fail.
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Old 06-18-2013, 12:16 PM   #109  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gloopy View Post
it doesn't fit wheels in/out in hardly any narrowbody aircraft bin. . . .you can't get it on hardly any full mainline flight smaller than a 767 . . ..
Huh?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sniper View Post
occasionally won't fit wheels in/out in old Boeings, or you have to get creative, like putting a pillow under the bag (for the life of me, I don't know why this bag isn't 1/2" shorter, so this issue wouldn't exist)
It fits in all but some classic 737 bins if you put the wheels out. It fits in the 737 bins too if you elevate the bag (with a pillow, for instance). It fits in all RJ bins.

Quote:
First of all its made in China for a similar price point that LW is made in the USA (I believe).
The SB is made in China, assembled in China. The LW bag is made in China too, but assembled in the US (the tags on the inside of a LW bag = 'made in China').

I wish both bags were made in the US. Neither are.
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Old 06-18-2013, 10:27 PM   #110  
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To say SB doesn't fit in narrow body bins is way wrong. Especially with UA installing the extended bins in the Airbii (which were my biggest headache) it's fairly rare that it doesn't fit. Most airlines have gone to the extended bins because of the "If you're in group XX we won't have bin space" nightmare we all see. I would say I only turn it sideways one commute leg a month. Worst case, go shake some hands and see if you can stow it up front.
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