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Bronze Coin Bag

Review is copyright 2016 by Wil C. Fry. All Rights Reserved.

Published: 2016.07.31



Copyright 2016 by Wil C. Fry.
Some rights reserved.

Back Story


After first purchasing the Zicac Men’s Shoulder Bag and finding it slightly too small, I went searching for a new “man purse”.

My primary difficulty is that most stores — at least in my area — do not carry such “man bags”; almost my only source was internet shopping. At brick-and-mortar stores, I found plenty of backpacks, bags made for carrying laptop computers, and women’s purses galore, but nothing to suit my purposes. I love online shopping for books, batteries, camera accessories, music, and other items that don’t need to be touched in person before ordering, but for an item like this, having it in front of me would be a huge help. But no such luck.

Until I stepped into Earthbound Trading Company in the Killeen Mall. There, I found a bag that seemed like it would do the trick. I learned after buying it that it’s called the “Bronze Coin Bag”. The only brand listed was the store’s name.


Cost


As I searched for a replacement for the Zicac bag, I decided to raise my price limit, seeing quite a few bags online that might fit my needs in the $70-120 range. Fortunately, this bag was only $25.



Items that easily fit into the Bronze Coin Bag
Copyright 2016 by Wil C. Fry. Some rights reserved



The dangling coins that gave the bag its name. I immediately removed them after buying the bag.
Copyright 2016 by Wil C. Fry.
Some rights reserved.

Construction And Design


What struck me immediately when first picking up the bag were the nine tiny coins that give the bag its name. Each hung from a short length (1 cm) of green string, and each string was encased with tiny amber beads. These gave the bag a decidedly feminine appearance, at least to me. Also, they seemed incredibly impractical — likely to be snagged, and certainly might jingle when I move. I decided before inspecting the rest of the bag that I could simply remove the coins with a knife if the rest of the bag turned out to be what I wanted. And that’s what I did — as soon as I got out of the store, I cut off the nine coins and their beaded strings. The result: the bag now appears unisex.


Sunglasses hanging from a D-ring on the bag’s side.
Copyright 2016 by Wil C. Fry.
Some rights reserved.
The bag is made of canvas, with polyester lining in the main pocket and the three largest zipper pockets. Two pockets under the flap are unlined. The canvas is stiff enough so the bag holds its shape while still being flexible. The stitching is neat and tidy for the most part. The pull tabs on the zippers were not as weighty as those on the Zicac bag, but still feel sturdy. Four of the six zippers pull smoothly; the small one inside the main pocket sticks a bit if you’re not careful, and the zipper on one front pocket has to go around two corners, so it can be tricky too. The D-rings (six of them, three on each side) aren’t impressively strong, but they appear to be more for decoration than for use — I’ve already used them for holding light objects like sunglasses. The shoulder strap is not detachable (a downside), but it is long enough for me to wear the bag cross-body, with the bag at my left hip and the strap on my right shoulder. It requires nearly full extension for this, with only a couple of inches left over (I’m about 188 cm, or 6’2”).



The top and side zippered pockets in the front flap
Copyright 2016 by Wil C. Fry. Some rights reserved



The two front pockets that are revealed when the flap is raised.
Copyright 2016 by Wil C. Fry.
Some rights reserved.
In the front flap, which covers the entire front of the bag and is held down by two hook-and-loop attachment points, there are two large zippered pockets. Both are large enough for my oversized phone (Samsung Galaxy Note 5). One zipper is across the top front, and the other is vertical, hidden behind a fold of canvas (see image above). The flap raises to reveal two unlined pockets on the front of the bag (see image at right); one with a hook-and-loop flap and the other with a zipper. The former is large enough for a flashlight or multitool or even a normal-sized phone, but not large enough for my phone; the latter is large enough for my phone and at least one more similarly shaped item.

The main compartment is large enough for a large paperback (“trade paperback”, about 9”x6”), which I might sometimes carry, in addition to my normally-carried items such as my long wallet, multitool, small notebook (5”x7”), pack of gum, and pens. There is one small unzippered pocket in the lining of the main compartment, and one small zippered pocket. The latter, I will use for my small phone charger and earbuds. The main compartment can be mostly closed with a zipper, but since it is covered by the flap, I will likely leave this zipper open. I am even considering removing this zipper, because it can get in the way.

On the back (hip side) is the final zippered, lined pocket, which is large enough for the 5”x7” notebook.


Size


I already mentioned that my issue with the Zicac bag was its size. This “Bronze Coin Bag” is larger, but not ridiculously so — I did not want a laptop sized messenger bag.

The store’s website lists the bag’s size as 10.5”x3.5”x11”, which I confirmed with my own measurements. When full, the thickness is closer to 4.5 inches. The height and width will vary by a half inch or so, depending on contents. (Empty, I measured the bag as 10 inches wide and 9.5 inches tall.)

This bag easily holds the items pictured above — book, notebook, phone, wallet, sunglasses, pens, gum, multitool, flashlight, earbuds, and charger.



My phone pictured in one of the front pockets, for scale.
Copyright 2016 by Wil C. Fry.
Some rights reserved.

Conclusion


As always, only time will tell if the bag is durable, but it seems like it will be. If I had to guess, I would say the first part to break will be the zipper of the inner pocket; it’s the smallest zipper and on the most delicate material. While I would have preferred a gray or light brown color, the muted green isn’t bad.

I feel comfortable wearing this bag and it seems easy enough to get everything in and out of it. As always, I will update this review if my opinions change.








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