For those of us that have DSLR cameras or even those with SLR cameras don’t like to advertise that we are carrying expensive/valuable equipment with us when we are on vacations, out and about or just going for a walk in a park. The problem is finding good options that don’t cost excessive amounts of money but allow you the ability to protect your equipment at the same time.
I’ve come across a really great solution that I have been using for some time now and I really enjoy having the option available and I even come to use this bag as my day to day bag when going just about anywhere. I’m able to carry the lenses and other equipment that I need with me for the trips I make. I have enough room to keep a very flexible amount of gear with me.
There are 2 versions of the main bag that everyone really likes and I also use myself, black and olive. I personally own both bags as I like the ability to swap for a little more formal bag (black) and the more casual or rugged look of the olive.
The bag has several different names but the place you need to order from remains the same (Gravity Trading), these are the bag names:
GT® Heavyweight Canvas Messenger Bag
These are the links for the bags on Amazon:
GT® Heavyweight Canvas Messenger Bag – (Black or Olive) ***Current Link***
Also this is a re-branded version of the Original Rapid Dominance R31 bag
GT® Heavyweight Canvas Messenger Bag – Black ***Current Link***
Old links (may not have Gravity Trading ordering available):
Original RAPID RAPDOM BRANDHeavyweight Classic Messenger Bag- Olive
Rapid Classic Canvas Messenger Bags
Original Heavyweight Classic Messenger Bag Olive Green – This is an old link that sometimes has the bag available from Gravity Trading.
The key to getting the right bag with a zippered main compartment it to order from the company “Gravity Trading“. They are the only company that is trusted to deliver the right product and not pull a bait and switch on you with another brand that doesn’t have a main compartment zipper.
Now for the part that makes it a Camera bag:
DSLR Camera Paddy, Make Your Own Camera Bag – Orange
The reason why this Item is prefered over other camera inserts is the dimensions. It’s the largest camera insert on the market right now and fits a messenger bag very well.
Product Dimensions: 4.5″d x 13″w x 9″t
But there are certainly other options out there to get, like:
Tenba makes a GREAT messenger bag insert with similar dimensions as the above, just not as tall but it is deeper (Inside Dimensions: 13W x 8H x 5-8D in.), also it does not have the top organization flap (that not only helps to protect your gear from the top but has several mesh pockets to keep things more organized).
Here is an image and link for you:
Tenba Photo Insert for Messenger Bags
What if you don’t like these options, well there are literally 100s of options out there for you, just check out this: Amazon Camera Insert List.
Shoulder strap padding:
Domke 725-310 FA-031 U.S. Post Office Shoulder Pad
If you are going to carry any bag for an extended amount of time it is a very wise decision to have a padded strap and this shoulder strap pad gives you very comfortable option. This product is even a certified US postal office item for use by our nations letter carriers.
Now I have tried to give you the cheaper options to purchase as some of the items out there can get pretty pricey and the whole point of this, besides the “stealth” factor, was to provide a camera bag that doesn’t cost an excessive amount, like many do, and meet the individual needs of the person that will be using it. Can you get carried away, most certainly! But the other factor is that if you already have a messenger type bag laying around that you want to use to carry your camera then by all means just complete the bag with an insert and roll. I hope you enjoy this post and find a way to get something that fits your needs that wont cost you more than it needs to.
Now if you can afford it there are other great bags that are already out there that a designed to be stealthy and protect your camera gear at the same time like the Think Tank: Retrospective line of camera bags. They are very nice bags but they also have a very nice price tag, so to speak. Their padding in this line is thinner than what is traditionally done in a camera bag but it also allows for the bag to flex easier and mold to your body and as long as you are not a klutz you should never have a problem with damage to your gear. However if you are a klutz then maybe you should consider the options mentioned earlier. I personally went with the earlier as I have any friends that are klutzes and I need to pretect my stuff from them…