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Filson Bag Thread: With Pictures - Page 330

post #4936 of 4943
Mgrennier, exactly. The Ernest Alexander is heading into the "more urbane" end of the spectrum and the Frost River heading into the "more rustic".

My Frost River simple brief went up nearly 50% in price in a year! A pretty incredible increase which cannot be attributed to foreign currency fluctuations.

The Ernest Alexander weekender however is optimized for carrying clothes rather than gear. And clothes tend to be more voluminous and less heavy than gear. Consequently, the bag is lighter and less boxy than Filson equivalents. And the capacity is high for its relatively small footprint. So I may give it a whirl. It does not have that "throw it in the back of pickup during a hailstorm" appeal of Filson but on the other hand l, it may look far better with your sport coat when you walk into the business class lounge.
post #4937 of 4943
Considering what I've read here about the Filson quality being on the demise, I wondered if I don't want my future bag (= duffel bag) to have some metal studs on the bottom. I don't think it's a good idea to put the duffel down on wet surfaces, or am I wrong here?
post #4938 of 4943
Duffel doesn't have any structure so while presumably 4 studs will keep those points off the ground, the rest will simply sag and touch the ground
post #4939 of 4943
Filson has for more and more turned into a "lifestyle" brand and the price will only continue to increase as the gap between Filson and other "lifestyle" brands makes Filson a relatively good value. Good example of this happening in the past is the new balance 990 running shoes which now sells for $200 +. while the design hasn't changed the shoe has become increasingly popular as a casual sneaker and those shoes sell for more than typical running shoes

Filson is more and more offering to their lifestyle customers than it is to their traditional hunting and outdoor clients but they all are going to see a bump in price
post #4940 of 4943

Below is a link to an album I’ve created to illustrate what happens when you wash a Filson bag (Tan 257). I normally wouldn’t wash a Filson bag, but this was my school bag that sat on the floor of a low level biohazard lab every day. In addition to any microscopic organisms that may be stuck to the bottom of my bag, there was also indigo stains on the back pockets, oil stains on the corners of the bag, and various areas where the bag rubbed up against bleach disinfectant. I now use the 257 as a beach bag.


Washed the bag in a front loading washing machine, no spin cycle, cold water, and normal detergent. Dried the bag upside down in the laundry room and then left it outside for an afternoon to fully dry. Yes, the indigo stains washed off, so did all the dirt.


Result? Washing the canvas will definitely clean the bag itself, but even on the gentlest cycle, the bridle leather gets damaged. After washing, the leather was dehydrated/felt crunchy and areas that were most worn lost some of the dark brown color.  The leather also became wrinkly on the surface. The zipper became wavy but also became less sharp and zipped much more quickly and smoothly. 


To restore the leather, I used a heat gun and Red Wing Leather Conditioner. Melted the leather conditioner into the leather. I did this process repeatedly until the leather was soft and pliable again. Color of the leather was also restored. 


Verdict: I do not recommend washing a Filson bag unless you absolutely have to. It just doesn't look the same after. I also own a navy 258, which is my workhorse bag, so I had the opportunity to compare new v. washed Filson bags.




Link to Album: http://imgur.com/a/3VqOt?gallery


post #4941 of 4943
With the relatively high cost of skilled American labor and an increasingly affluent customer base, brands like Filson (now often part of larger conglomerates focused on annual growth and increased profit) will of course look to where they can cut cost and where they can raise prices. It is a risky enterprise as you risk alienating your loyal outdoor enthusiast customer base when you cater to a more fickle fashion conscious one. And American heritage brands have been clearly in - influenced by the hipster love of many traditionally American working class brands of a certain pedigree or tradition. No surprise the same company owns Shinola and Filson. If Filson didn't already exist, someone would have had to invent it by now - like they did with the Detroit watch brand glomming on our cultural nostalgia for mid century American manufacturing might.

More specifically, I have old (Talon zipper) and new Filson pieces and I don't frankly see this drastic change in quality that others perceive, but I readily admit this may be that I am not as discerning. But I do readily see steady price increases (way above rate if inflation) and new models which use less leather and simpler construction. And catalogues that are clearly more lifestyle oriented.

On the other hand, in all fairness, the other brands offering similar construction and materials are often NOT notably cheaper than Filson even when made in Asia. Will Leather Goods and RL come to mind here. So it seems it is still a case of Filson raising the price to what the current market will bear.
post #4942 of 4943
Originally Posted by Schnurretiger View Post

Considering what I've read here about the Filson quality being on the demise, I wondered if I don't want my future bag (= duffel bag) to have some metal studs on the bottom. I don't think it's a good idea to put the duffel down on wet surfaces, or am I wrong here?

i think unless you place your Filson in a puddle, it shouldn't be an issue. Most of the complaints have been about the perceived decline in quality of the leather rather than declining quality in the twill.
post #4943 of 4943
Anybody have a 266 Sportsman they are willing to sell? I think the 266 Sportsman is just about perfect in terms of shape, organization & size. When I went to buy it, I tried packing it with my stuff for a standard 2 night trip. It almost worked but didn't fit my eagle creek folder I use for dress shirts, SC, etc. I opted for the Med Travel instead which is only an inch larger in each dimension, but increases the volume signifcantly. I've used the medium travel for 3-4 yrs when I'm not flying, maybe once a month for my standard 2 night trips. My only gripe is that it flips over when packed full and carried on the shoulder. I plan to drop down to the smaller eagle,creek folder and give the 266 a shot if I can find one. If it works, I'll sell the med travel.

I've also used a tan 256 daily since 2007. It has the old, non padded shoulder strap which I much prefer. I picked up a very old 257 via eBay a few yrs ago but never use it. I just don't need the extra space. I was sad to learn that the 266 is discontinued. I'm browsing eBay now for one, but if anybody has one, let me know.
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