windsor

Super Member
I have some older Hartmann bags that are in good shape but have developed a bad odor.(vomit) I have several and they all have this condition. Nothing has been spilled on them and they were not stored anywhere to absorb this smell. I think the plasticizers they use for waterproofing are breaking down and out-gassing. I'm concerned my clothes packed in them will absorb this odor. Anyone else ever had this problem and have a solution? I have tried spraying with Febreze and airing out and it helps but does not eliminate the problem. For what these bags sell for (retail 475.00 I think) I don't think the customer is getting full value.:mad:
 

AlanC

Sartorial Sultan<br> Moderator, Trad Forum
You might contact Hartmann and see if they have any suggestions. I believe Andy has suggested using odor absorbent kitty litter to help remove odors like that. Try putting some in cloth bags inside the luggage.
 

jamgood

Elite Member
I have an old LL Bean poncho (the type that is so huge you can make a pup tent of it, i digress) and some Bobby Jones rain pants that were each made of a similar (to each other) rubberized cotton material. They each developed the very strong vomit scent, unprovoked. I tried bleaching the poncho without success in killing the odor. I keep both in the car trunk (boot) sealed in plastic for dire emergencies.

Have a large old Hartmann belting leather suitcase with cotton lining. Just smells musty from lack of use. No scent of upchuck.

Is Hartmann still based in Lebanon, Tenn. or did they go offshore?
 

AlanC

Sartorial Sultan<br> Moderator, Trad Forum
Is Hartmann still based in Lebanon, Tenn. or did they go offshore?
I'm pretty sure they are still based there, but I believe a lot of their stuff is made offshore (I have a Hartmann card case/wallet made offshore). I think their upper end belting bags are still made domestically.
 

ChicagoTrad

Senior Member
People with shoes that have a musty smell have recommended doing a rinse with a water/baking soda. It might be worth a try if the other things don't help.
 

mannaman

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I made the experience that Hartmann has a great customer service.
I acquired a belting leather briefcase in Florida and brought it back to Germany. Unfortunately, the guy who checked my luggage for bombs after I checked it in was unable to open the lock (it was not locked, just closed), so he decided to break it.

I called Hartmann and they sent me a replacement lock a couple of days later, free of charge. Overseas! I wasa really impressed.

And yes, still Tenn.

I will PM you the email of a lady at cs.
 

smr

Super Member
I made the experience that Hartmann has a great customer service.
I acquired a belting leather briefcase in Florida and brought it back to Germany. Unfortunately, the guy who checked my luggage for bombs after I checked it in was unable to open the lock (it was not locked, just closed), so he decided to break it.

I called Hartmann and they sent me a replacement lock a couple of days later, free of charge. Overseas! I wasa really impressed.

And yes, still Tenn.

I will PM you the email of a lady at cs.
I've had similar experiences, and the cs people in TN will help any way they can; very nice people.
 

jmonroestyle

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I have had a similar experience with other brands of luggage such as Tumi, Boyt, Eastpack, and Andiamo. I owned high end ballistic nylon and cordura nylon duffle/cargo bags from all these companies, and after a number of years they all developed that vomit smell. I am thinking it is most likely the chemicals in the rip stop coating that is applied to the underside of the ballistic and cordura nylon materials, and or any plastic materials used in the linings of the bags that is breaking down and exuding the odors. I have never had any success eliminating this odor, and I will not pack my nice clothes and boots in these bags, so I just throw them away and buy new bags. These bags are very well made, and would have lasted for decades.

Now I don't buy very expensive luggage anymore, because of the future smell factor. Instead of Tumi and Andiamo, I stick with more moderately priced luggage such as Briggs and Riley and Eagle Creek.

Jess
 

mannaman

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I also own several pieces of Tumi, luggage (garment bags, wheel-a-ways) and lots of briefcases. Some of them are 10+yrs old and do not smell like vomit. That is really awkward.
 

Luckyguy

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
I own many Tumi bags (Garment bag, duffel bag, wheel-a-ways, etc.) and a few Hartmann belting leather bags and briefcase for over five to twenty years and I have never noticed any odor like that. Sorry to hear about your unpleasant experience with the Hartmanns.
 

mannaman

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Sorry, but I cannot imagine that Tumi or Hartmann uses fabric that emits vomit odors. If it is really a technical problem, it will happen to every piece from that fabric. And mine does not stink at all.

On the other hand: Puking in ones suitcase is usually something you remember...at the latest on the next morning after a night out on a business trip
 

wvuguy

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
Hartmann Factory Store
1303 West Baddour Parkway
Lebanon, TN 37087

615-449-8000
Yup, I just visited the FS in Lebanon TN two weeks ago. I bought a football-grained leather checkbook-style billfold for a very reasonable $18; it was probably marked down that low.....from $80 full-retail.....because it wasn't the classic/smooth belting leather so identifiable with traditional Hartmann. The best deal in the store, FWIW, happened to be a ballistic nylon, full-size, rolling garment bag for about $280.

And, the factory indeed still IS right next door, though I couldn't bet my life they're not producing anything offshore. But, considering their prices at full-retail.....and the FS store wasn't exactly brimming with what I'd consider great deals.....a Hartmann salesperson would, IMHO, have trouble looking you in the eye if his products were coming from anywhere other than Tennessee.
 
Last edited:

windsor

Super Member
You may find it hard to imagine but it indeed is happening. I have some Hartmann...in tweed and belting leather that does not have this problem. The ones that do are made from what they call Rangeweave, I believe and they could be twenty years old. Thanks to all who offered suggestions. I will try them.
 

CHenry

Starting Member
The sour organic smell is caused by the degrading of the urethane-based fabric waterproofing. There isn't much you can do, and this kind of problem is also common to older camping goods made of coated nylon materials, tents, tarpaulins and ponchos especially. Masking it or trying to adsorb the breakdown products will have to be a repeated exercise and unfortunately doesn't do much good.
 
G

Guest-920195

Guest
I have some older Hartmann bags that are in good shape but have developed a bad odor.(vomit) I have several and they all have this condition. Nothing has been spilled on them and they were not stored anywhere to absorb this smell. I think the plasticizers they use for waterproofing are breaking down and out-gassing. I'm concerned my clothes packed in them will absorb this odor. Anyone else ever had this problem and have a solution? I have tried spraying with Febreze and airing out and it helps but does not eliminate the problem. For what these bags sell for (retail 475.00 I think) I don't think the customer is getting full value.:mad:
I have same problem. It is so bad, two bags—I paid in excess of $800 for both—they are now on side walk for trash pick up. It’s a shame. The bags were still in good condition.
 
Your email address will not be publicly visible. We will only use it to contact you to confirm your post.

IMPORTANT: BEFORE POSTING PLEASE CHECK THE DATE OF THE LAST POST OF THIS THREAD. IF IT'S VERY OLD, PLEASE CONSIDER REGISTERING FIRST, AND STARTING A NEW THREAD ABOUT THIS TOPIC.