SirSuturesALot

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
125
http://www.saddlebackleather.com/briefcases.htm

The descriptions from the above website paint the picture of an incredible bag, but I'm having a hard time believing them. I did a search across multiple boards and found that 98% of the time there was a post promoting these bags, it was suspect and most likely made by the shilling owner himself. (For example, he did this on SF and was subsequently banned.)

Nonetheless, the claims are just too good to pass up without additional investigation so I'm wondering if anyone have any actual experience with this company and their goods?

FYI, I was able to find one substantial review of the bag, and it was not good:
http://www.nathanbranch.com/2007/09/092807.html
 

fullgrain

Senior Member
770
Funny, I was about to ask the same question, after reading a poster's mention of it yesterday. I too, found the copy a bit too good to be true, and when I read that line about the imperfections a sign of quality handstitching, I kind of wen't hmmm.

It did look like a nice bag, but not worth the price premium over, say, customhide. I'd be interested to hear folks' experiences too.
 

DSD

New Member
89
Saddleback Bags

I also found the claims impressive and ordered the bag a few weeks ago. It is a nice bag but I was a bit disappointed in it in some areas. I did not have any stitching issues per se but found that the leather on the sides near the stitching was 1/4 of the thickness of the leather everywhere else and looked prone to rip. In fact, a small tear developed in one area. I sent the bag back and am deciding what I want to do about a replacement. It is very cool-looking bag but seemed carelessly made in some respects. In the seam areas you could also see excess glue (?) that was used to bond the leather - it made glue stains in some areas that made it either look very handmade or rather cheap, depending on your point of view.

Personally I did not like the fact that it was stamped inside with a "100% genuine leather" and "made in mexico" as it made the bag seem somehow like something you would pick up from a street vendor in Mexico if you were a tourist. That may be more my issue than an issue with the bag itself. It does appear very stout but certainly not finely crafted, IMO. I do like the fact that the bag lends itself to more than one use in that it could be used as a good travel bag, weekend bag, gear bag, etc and not only as a briefcase.

Bottom-line for me - a nice leather bag but lacking in some respects and certainly hyped a bit above the reality of the product.

Regards,

DSD

PS - I just ordered a flap-over SAB in London Tan :)
 

giff74

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
120
I LOVE MY BAG!!!

Let me preface what I am going to say. I was looking more for Indiana Jones than I was Dow Jones. I wanted rugged, heavy, tough and kind of mean looking. Kind of like a good muscle car, instead of the Ferrari for once.

I have carried my bag from coast to coast with laptop and tons of stuff piled into. I have found my bag holds up very to the challenge of airport security scanners, plane overheads, plane under seat storage, taxi's, the Ritz Carlton and Ritz crackers.

It's also important to point out that I sometimes wear rubber soled shoes, have had a phone/blackberry attached to my belt while wearing a suit and wear lots of RTW clothes. I guess I am not the tradition member here, I often put function before form, but to date none of my clients seem to mind.

To get to the heart of the matter. All of the stitching is not exactly equal to the edge and the rivets that hold the center strap on are not exactly even. To me this thing shouts hard working character. It is NOT a soft, subtle, "prissy" bag. It's for someone who needs to carry a bunch of stuff and at the same time doesnt want to be carrying a bag that they are afraid of getting a scratch on.

Just my two cents after a couple of years with my satchel bag.

Giff
 
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DSD

New Member
89
Pics

I have my replacement bag on the way and will see how this one is compared to the one I had to return. I will take some pics later in the week and post them if Giff does not get a chance to. I also found some of the posts that you mentioned where it appears the owner posted some misleading threads trying to drum up business. Interestingly on other sites where I have seen some comments on the bags, it is often someone with only a few posts on that forum.

I did find another review on a website

http://the-gadgeteer.com/review/saddleback_leather_company_briefcase

and it was positive. I was told my bag came over from mexico in a shipment with 500 other bags so it does not sound to me like there is one old master craftsman with a couple of helpers making the bags by hand "with the old craftsman making or personally checking each and every one before it leaves" as is stated on the website for the product....

Regards,

DSD
 

marlinspike

Advanced Member
2,221
United States
VA
Hampton
Seems to me that with such a small and casual bag you might as well get something like a Billingham Tura that is known to be of the highest quality and last decades (just realized they have bigger sizes...still though Billingham makes comparable sizes too).
 
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