If you are a klutz like me, walking around with ALL your camera gear can be a bit nerve wracking. I’ve been known to literally trip over my own two feet – in fact, that’s the exact scenario in which I broke my foot last December – when going about my daily business. Introduce thousands of dollars worth of gear into that scenario and, well, I am sure you can see where I am going with this. Usually, I have my camera with a lens attached and maybe one additional lens in my everyday camera bag/purse. I’ve made countless road trips and flights this way, but it’s really really heavy when you load it up to it’s full capacity. On top of that, if I am flying, I then lose my purse capacity… and since I always travel with my laptop, that means I have to have an additional carry on bag or risk putting my laptop in my suitcase. Neither or these are a good option, especially if you are travelling with a herd of children, which I usually am. I knew I was going to need a better solution when I was prepping for speaking at Click Away since I’d be hauling all my gear with me.
Enter Think Tank’s Airport Roller Derby.
This bag is amazing. Can you even call it a bag? It’s more like a suitcase for your camera stuff, but it’s utterly amazing. I couldn’t stop raving about it! With 4 dual wheels this is an ideal bag for rolling upright, tilted back, or tilted to the side depending upon your preference. I probably had upwards of 50lbs being lugged around in this sucker and yet those four tiny wheels made it feel like it was just floating through the airport, down the sidewalk, around the city. I was able to push it with just one finger to show someone how easily it rolled. As you can see below, I really took advantage of this little work horse and made it my pack mule. I piled on a heavy signature album (that in itself weighed about 6 lbs, which is a lot for a book!), my overfull Kelly Moore bag (filled with everything from discount cards to snacks to notebooks to my knitting), and a full water bottle. It still rolled along or stood upright perfectly. Just look at all the gear I fit in there! I had two camera bodies (a Canon 5DM2 and a 5DM3), four lenses, 2 flashes, my computer charger, my camera charger, my film camera with a lens attached (a Nikon f2 Photomic and boy, is that sucker heavy!) and two other lenses plus a few rolls of film. You can’t see it, but I also have my laptop and a bunch of press print cards and the like in the top flap. And if I wanted to, I could fit a few other bits and bobbles in there too! Y’all, that is an insane amount of heavy and expensive equipment loaded into one carry-on sized container.
As if this wasn’t enough, Think Tank has also managed to cram in additional features like interior zippered pockets, outside pockets for easy access stuff like your phone, a tripod mount, cable and lock tethers so people can’t snatch your gear in the event you have to leave it somewhere, and even a little raincoat for your entire Airport Roller Derby. If you are one of those that has to transport lighting on location, they’ve just rolled out (ha! no pun intended!) a new bag just for you, the Production Manager 40.
All in all, I can not express how much I love my Think Tank. I’ve known about them for a while but never really had the foresight to purchase a bag before my trips. I can’t believe I didn’t because now all I can think is how did I get along without this bag before?! The customer service is great, the product is of utmost quality, and their reputation is stellar with good reason! Two thumbs way way up, Siskel and Ebert style.