Author Topic: [IC] TKL Brief - a padded carry bag for keyboards and number pads  (Read 28716 times)

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Offline norbauer

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I've been thinking about making a nylon ("tactical style") keyboard carry cases to go my CNC aluminum cases, which should also fit any TKL boards. Would anybody have any interest in such a thing? I used to own an industrial sewing machine and use to play around with making bags, backpacks, etc., and have always thought it would be fun to design something like this. When I was lugging my keyboard case to and from the NorCal meetup recently the idea occurred to me that it would be cool to have a custom case to schlep it around in. :)

It would be sort of inspired by this Jack Spade case


And the mil-spec type construction methods and materials used in the rugged packs made by GoRuck.

I was thinking of putting a bullion wire patch on the front—this sort of thing:


But with my little Norbauer logo/emblem thingie on it. (It's a stylized crowned portcullis, which I've always used as a logo for my various creative ventures, since I once worked in the British Parliament, which uses a similar design).

It would be pretty small and unobtrusive, but I think kind of cool.

I was thinking of including an interior pocket for a USB cable and a longer zippered interior pocket for small tools.

Two questions: 1) any interest/appeal?, 2) what sort of features would you like to see in your dream keyboard carry case?
« Last Edit: Sun, 17 June 2018, 13:20:31 by norbauer »

Online exitfire401

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #1 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 00:57:35 »
I'd be down for one. Especially once you do a RF87 case ;)
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Offline jchan94

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #2 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 01:00:13 »
I saw "tactical", and was lowkey expecting something like this..

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Offline OfTheWild

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #3 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 01:07:53 »
Needs to have more MOLLE loops on the front so I can attach all my EDC gear for things like opening cardboard boxes, or shining light under my desk to find the screw i dropped.  :thumb:
-Dana

Offline mech0nly

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[IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #4 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 03:04:45 »
Wow, it reminds me about eva case from OTD


Will it have cushion inside? Hope it strong enough carrying heavy alu keyboard for a long time.
I'm interested ;)


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« Last Edit: Tue, 14 March 2017, 03:19:39 by mech0nly »
keyboards are keyboards

Offline arcsay

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #5 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 08:56:19 »
I'm up for this, I can't find a case to fit my NorbauTouch.

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #6 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 09:42:49 »
Needs to have more MOLLE loops on the front so I can attach all my EDC gear for things like opening cardboard boxes, or shining light under my desk to find the screw i dropped.  :thumb:

Oh, I would love to add MOLLE loops. I didn't realize anybody would want them. This is a common feature of military-style tactical packs.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MOLLE

Offline FoC_Tow

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #7 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 11:37:13 »
Would love to get one but am not much of a tkl guy unfortunately.

Maybe I could fit my VE:A with a diy sepperator in between halfs tho =)

Any chance for a 75 or 60 version?

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #8 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 12:34:20 »
Would love to get one but am not much of a tkl guy unfortunately.

Maybe I could fit my VE:A with a diy sepperator in between halfs tho =)

Any chance for a 75 or 60 version?

If the TKL case works out and people seem to like it, I'd totally be happy to give a 60/75 carry case a try.

Offline afrokobe

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #9 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 12:38:01 »
yes please :)

Offline Slash Emperor

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #10 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 13:41:23 »
I'd also love to see this MOLLE-compatible.

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #11 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 13:42:38 »
I'd also love to see this MOLLE-compatible.

Awesome. I've already added it to the prototype design I'm working on. :)

Offline OfTheWild

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #12 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 18:03:40 »
not to make too many requests... but can the inside be soft velcro so we can add dividers and panels? This is also super common with tactile bags but it would also make it great for doing the smaller boards in the TKL sized bag or for adding cables or whatever.
-Dana

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #13 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 18:26:33 »
not to make too many requests... but can the inside be soft velcro so we can add dividers and panels? This is also super common with tactile bags but it would also make it great for doing the smaller boards in the TKL sized bag or for adding cables or whatever.

Interesting. Maybe we could make one of the larger interior panels soft velcro (the one opposite the zipper and USB pocket) to accommodate that. Such an addition may be going too far in the direction of "tactical" and away from the sort of simple, elegant styling I would also like the bag to have, but it's definitely worth considering. I'm currently waiting on samples and swatches and will have a better sense after I've looked at those what will and won't work. I was hoping to have the interior of the bag be an interesting color to make it easier to see inside and also just to make it more interesting, and sourcing the same color of Velcro could prove a challenge.

Offline bmmcwhirt

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #14 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 23:07:25 »
Tactical usually implies hard water tight case of mil grade plastic or kydex.

Unfortunate, I might have been interested in a real tactical case.

Offline iamtootallforthis

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #15 on: Tue, 14 March 2017, 23:39:14 »
I am interested in this but a big factor for me buying it or not would be cost.

Offline norbauer

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Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #17 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 00:00:45 »
I am interested in this but a big factor for me buying it or not would be cost.

Totally understandable. Same here! :) I'm currently just messing around with various ideas and it's too early to say about the cost, but as with my recent CNC cases, I always treat cost control as a paramount concern. It's tough when making stuff at low quantities, but with a bit of diligence I've found it's usually possible to get stuff made at reasonable prices as long as you make that a goal. In any case, I can promise it would cost a decent amount less than your average Jack Spade bag (all made in China, not that I object, but usually starting around $300) and Goruck, which is also around $250 price point for the smallest and simplest of their designs, only going up from there. I can figure out a better price for us on something like this, I'm fairly sure. But we'll see. I'll need to finish the prototype first before I can start getting quotes, however, so it'll be a bit of time. At this point, I'm just collecting ideas and people's thoughts.
« Last Edit: Wed, 15 March 2017, 00:02:51 by norbauer »

Offline Puddsy

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #18 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 00:35:37 »
This is a ridiculous idea. I love it.
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Offline OfTheWild

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #19 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 00:42:19 »
not to make too many requests... but can the inside be soft velcro so we can add dividers and panels? This is also super common with tactile bags but it would also make it great for doing the smaller boards in the TKL sized bag or for adding cables or whatever.

Interesting. Maybe we could make one of the larger interior panels soft velcro (the one opposite the zipper and USB pocket) to accommodate that. Such an addition may be going too far in the direction of "tactical" and away from the sort of simple, elegant styling I would also like the bag to have, but it's definitely worth considering. I'm currently waiting on samples and swatches and will have a better sense after I've looked at those what will and won't work. I was hoping to have the interior of the bag be an interesting color to make it easier to see inside and also just to make it more interesting, and sourcing the same color of Velcro could prove a challenge.

I dont think you're getting what i mean. Check out the inside of a timbuk2 bag if you get a chance. Its lined with a fuzzy fabric that you can stick velcro dividers to. Photography bags are also usually made this way. Most 'tactical' cases do this as well to allow for rearranging of dividers or adding 'velcro tactical panels' like this: https://prometheusdesignwerx.com/collections/soft-goods/products/6x6-admin-tile?variant=35133983882

Anyway, I dont want to get you sidetracked. This is a cool idea! I am likely in for this since its way better than carrying expensive stuff around wrapped in towels.
-Dana

Offline FoC_Tow

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #20 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 01:29:58 »
Camera bag style fabric which allows Velcro devider attachment would be awesome.

Probably down for one either way tho xD

Offline Data

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #21 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 07:01:46 »
I'd use something like this for storage or very light travel.  For serious travel a hard case like the Pelican would be absolutely mandatory.  A soft case might be OK for plastic keyboards but we're not exactly talking about those...


Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #23 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 09:54:15 »
Tactical usually implies hard water tight case of mil grade plastic or kydex.

Nonsense.

https://www.google.com/search?q=tactical+bag&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiOvbC53NfSAhUHj1QKHURJCZ0Q_AUICSgC&biw=1280&bih=1272

Don't get me wrong, it's a great idea, just not what I expected. I think the 'case' vs 'bag' is the difference.

https://www.google.com/search?q=tactical+bag&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiOvbC53NfSAhUHj1QKHURJCZ0Q_AUICSgC&biw=1280&bih=1272#tbm=isch&q=tactical+case&*

Ah, ok. That's a fair point. I changed the name in the thread title.

I guess I had taken to calling it a "keyboard case case," which for some reason amuses me, since the idea grew out of making a carrying apparatus for the CNC cases I recently made and will probably be making again soon. So I guess I got attached to that term and didn't think that calling it a "bag" would probably be clearer.

In principle, a hard case for a keyboard would be awesome, but I think making something custom probably wouldn't offer much advantage over adapting a Pelican case, so I don't really have much to offer there that would be better than an off-the-shelf solution.

Offline cynviloq

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #24 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 12:36:03 »
norbauer, at this point everything you've offered has been on my want list so far (NT case, RF87U case, carry bag) so you can basically count on +1 purchase from me for any idea.

How are you approaching the carry handles? For me, a keyboard case generally would go into another bag most of the time so I'd rather not have beefy handles that a typical carry bag would but understand the tradeoff of needing it for the heavier CNC cases... maybe handles that are foldable or even tuckable into the bag.

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #25 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 12:52:51 »
norbauer, at this point everything you've offered has been on my want list so far (NT case, RF87U case, carry bag) so you can basically count on +1 purchase from me for any idea.

How are you approaching the carry handles? For me, a keyboard case generally would go into another bag most of the time so I'd rather not have beefy handles that a typical carry bag would but understand the tradeoff of needing it for the heavier CNC cases... maybe handles that are foldable or even tuckable into the bag.

I've been giving some thought to this too. Rather than doing the big style of rigid leather handles you often seen on Jack Spade style bags, I'm thinking of maybe a hybrid approach with simple low-profile nylon webbing handles but with a thin layer of supple calfskin leather to give it a slightly nicer feel where the webbing rests in your hand. That is to say: it would be nylon webbing with a sewn-in-place sleeve of soft leather where your hand goes.

I'm thinking of also covering the piping at the seams in this same leather, as in my experience leather piping gives a much cleaner look. I find the Goruck shoulder bags, for example, to look kind of frumpy at the seams owing to the lack of piping. Tom Bihn bags always have piping at the seams, which makes them look nice, but I find that leather just looks nicer than the nylon that they usually use (Perhaps the leather lends rigidity to the piping, which keeps the seams looking crisper.)

Thanks so much for the kind and encouraging words, btw. :) That kind of thing really means a lot to me and seriously keeps me motivated in exploring projects like these.

Offline bmmcwhirt

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #26 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 15:44:55 »
Tactical usually implies hard water tight case of mil grade plastic or kydex.

Nonsense.

https://www.google.com/search?q=tactical+bag&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiOvbC53NfSAhUHj1QKHURJCZ0Q_AUICSgC&biw=1280&bih=1272

Don't get me wrong, it's a great idea, just not what I expected. I think the 'case' vs 'bag' is the difference.

https://www.google.com/search?q=tactical+bag&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiOvbC53NfSAhUHj1QKHURJCZ0Q_AUICSgC&biw=1280&bih=1272#tbm=isch&q=tactical+case&*

Ah, ok. That's a fair point. I changed the name in the thread title.

I guess I had taken to calling it a "keyboard case case," which for some reason amuses me, since the idea grew out of making a carrying apparatus for the CNC cases I recently made and will probably be making again soon. So I guess I got attached to that term and didn't think that calling it a "bag" would probably be clearer.

In principle, a hard case for a keyboard would be awesome, but I think making something custom probably wouldn't offer much advantage over adapting a Pelican case, so I don't really have much to offer there that would be better than an off-the-shelf solution.

True and between Pelican and the other similar cases there is probably a case that closely fits a keyboard.

Have you given thought to having the top and bottom have a hard material sewn into it to give it just a little rigidness and added protection? I've seen it done in the bottom of duffle bags before.

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry case for TKL keyboards
« Reply #27 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 16:25:45 »
Have you given thought to having the top and bottom have a hard material sewn into it to give it just a little rigidness and added protection? I've seen it done in the bottom of duffle bags before.

I'm currently looking at various closed-cell foams to use as padding for the bottom, which is a semi-rigid foam that won't readily take on water. The sides will be something thinner and more supple (sort of like dive suit neoprene) to avoid making the bag too bulky needlessly, but the sides will still be padded in some form or another.

Offline sherryton

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #28 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 16:37:21 »
I think the divider suggested by FoC_Tow should be used! I think there was a similar bag case for the hhkb.

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #29 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 18:13:39 »
I think the divider suggested by FoC_Tow should be used! I think there was a similar bag case for the hhkb.

Oh, cool. If anybody has pics, please post here. :)

Offline megaforce

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #30 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 18:15:06 »
What type of material are being considered?  Ballistic nylon, leather, waxed canvas?

Looking forward to this!

Edit: Also dig the style of the Go Ruck packs and rifle cases:

http://www.goruck.com/gr1-explained

http://www.goruck.com/rifle-case-black-/p/GEAR-000971
« Last Edit: Wed, 15 March 2017, 18:20:02 by megaforce93 »

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Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #31 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 18:18:33 »
What type of material are being considered?  Ballistic nylon, leather, waxed canvas?

Looking forward to this!

Outer shell: either black cordura or black ballistic. piping should hopefully be covered in black calfskin leather, assuming I can get the prototype to come out right.
Handle: nylon webbing with calfskin grip
Interior: ripstop nylon in lighter color (purple or red maybe), possibly with some kind of velcro attachment panel

I'm not a big fan of waxed canvas because of how it accumulates scratches over time. I know it's fixable with a heat gun, but it still just looks kind of rough and thus just isn't quite my style.

Offline megaforce

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #32 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 18:23:18 »
What type of material are being considered?  Ballistic nylon, leather, waxed canvas?

Looking forward to this!

Outer shell: either black cordura or black ballistic. piping should hopefully be covered in black calfskin leather, assuming I can get the prototype to come out right.
Handle: nylon webbing with calfskin grip
Interior: ripstop nylon in lighter color (purple or red maybe), possibly with some kind of velcro attachment panel

I'm not a big fan of waxed canvas because of how it accumulates scratches over time. I know it's fixable with a heat gun, but it still just looks kind of rough and thus just isn't quite my style.

Cordura or ballistic would be perfect! Also added some links in my post above for some "tactical" bags.

Now if we could get a khaki or coyote brown  ;) Any color would look great regardless with those materials.

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Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #33 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 19:17:01 »
Incidentally, I made an error earlier: it's lambskin (not calf skin) I'm thinking of using for the leather accents. It's the same material used in high-end driving gloves and feels really nice.

Offline -musubi

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #34 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 19:57:04 »
This would be pretty nice to have as long it doesn't break the bank!

Offline bmmcwhirt

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #35 on: Wed, 15 March 2017, 20:50:18 »
So would be overkill and way to expensive, but the best leather I've ever had on a product was the sharkskin boot on my K2 rollerblades.

Do you have any sketches yet of what you have in mind so far?

Since I cant visualize what you have in mind yet let me share some of my preferences.

I personally don't like zippers. The break and can get stuck. So buckle or velcro would be my preference, with snaps a third option. Buttons come off too easy unless they are riveted like on button fly jeans.

I really like the idea of modular attachments. So interchangeable handles and shoulder strap and a place to have a carabiner for attaching the bag to my backpack.

These are things I would like but this isn't my project and there is no way you can please everyone. Do feel free to take my ideas if you think they fit your design though.

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #36 on: Fri, 05 May 2017, 18:36:11 »
I've made a bit of progress on this.  :D

The interior is designed to hold a keyboard with dimensions of up to 40cm x 20 cm x 5cm.

Fabrics: black ballistic on outside, silver gray light Cordura type material on interior with deep royal purple (!) seam binding. Extremely leather piping at seams and leather over nylon webbing for handles. This thing is going to be hardcore nerd hipster swank, with a touch of pseudo-badass, I promise.  :rolleyes:

The exterior outward-facing side has MOLLE loops for easy access to (and showing off of) everyday carry stuff like flashlights, pens, etc.



There is a small patch pocket for a USB cable and a larger zippered pocket for small hand tools, keycaps, etc.





Logo patch (silver color metal hand-stitched against black felt):


I should have a physical prototype of the bag in a few weeks. Woo!

Any suggestions are exceedingly welcome.
« Last Edit: Mon, 04 September 2017, 11:32:47 by norbauer »

Offline sth

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #37 on: Fri, 05 May 2017, 18:47:19 »
what sort of tactics does this bag apply to?
11:48 -!- SmallFry [~SmallFry@unaffiliated/smallfry] has quit [Ping timeout: 245 seconds] ... rest in peace

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #38 on: Fri, 05 May 2017, 18:53:25 »
what sort of tactics does this bag apply to?

Mostly this

Offline sth

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #39 on: Fri, 05 May 2017, 18:58:28 »
what sort of tactics does this bag apply to?

Mostly this
Show Image


hmm how about some of this
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Offline pr0ximity

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #40 on: Fri, 05 May 2017, 19:24:15 »
Sign me up for one
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Offline futurecrime

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #41 on: Fri, 05 May 2017, 20:10:38 »
I'm interested depending on price and colour options. Also would like to see a matching numpad bumbag.

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #42 on: Fri, 05 May 2017, 20:24:01 »
Also would like to see a matching numpad bumbag.

Ha interesting. Maybe a MOLLE numpad pouch to go on the front!  ;D

Offline K.Mak

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #43 on: Thu, 11 May 2017, 03:44:00 »
Definitely interested as I'm not a huge fan of the sleeves that are widely available. While they are colorful, I don't like that most of them just use a string as a closing mechanism, I would rather have a magnet or button.

My favorite keyboard cases were the hard cases that Keychatter used to sell before they changed management. Haven't been able to get a hard walled case since that time.

Offline FoC_Tow

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #44 on: Thu, 11 May 2017, 05:55:04 »
Count me in for one too!

If only we could get a 60 version aswell xD

Offline Phenix

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #45 on: Thu, 11 May 2017, 06:21:11 »
could there be the possibility to add an 'tablet holder'?
this could make up as an portable work station nicely.
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Offline Owl-

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #46 on: Thu, 11 May 2017, 09:26:35 »
What velcro are you using? if its some cheap velcro that fluffs up easily and attracts more dust - please avoid. I seriously dislike velcro overall. Would prefer an alternative like button securement or some compact slim clasp
« Last Edit: Thu, 11 May 2017, 09:29:07 by Owl- »

Offline Robotical

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #47 on: Thu, 11 May 2017, 10:01:20 »
Count me in for one too!

If only we could get a 60 version aswell xD

I would settle for the ability to swap foam inserts. :)

Offline Phenix

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #48 on: Thu, 11 May 2017, 10:02:55 »
Count me in for one too!

If only we could get a 60 version aswell xD

I would settle for the ability to swap foam inserts. :)
this.

custom foam inserts rule.
Winter is coming.

Offline norbauer

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Re: [IC] Tactical Carry bag for TKL keyboards
« Reply #49 on: Thu, 11 May 2017, 12:16:02 »
If only we could get a 60 version aswell xD

We'll see how this project does. If people seem to like it and figuring out how to get it made isn't too painful/expensive, I'll definitely consider a 60% version. I could make designs for carry bags all day. I love these things.   :D